Open mike 16/12/2023

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, December 16th, 2023 - 47 comments
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47 comments on “Open mike 16/12/2023 ”

  1. Ad 1

    Judicial appointments are recommended to the GG by the Attorney General Judith Collins.

    Who recommended Judith Collins to be KC? Herself, recommending her own application?

    Does anyone remember during the campaign Nat columnists critiquing NZ as a left-leaning bench?

    Looks like preparation for National tilting judges rightwards by appointments.

    No proof yet but must mean stronger scrutiny of new judicial appointments under Judith.

    • CharlieB 1.1

      I believe Luxon recommended her and the GG appointed her..

      • Anne 1.1.1

        I believe Collins asked Luxon to recommend her because even though she is Attorney General she can hardly recommend herself. Not a good look.

        As far as the GG is concerned she is duty bound to appoint whomsoever the PM wishes her to appoint.

    • Peter 1.2

      Will there be a formal investiture or somesuch? Hopefully when Judith heads out to it she goes in the right direction and doesn't incidentally stop off for a quick, casual cup of tea on the way.

      I'd hate for her to end up in the totally opposite direction, it actually be a formal dinner, had been planned some time before and was really a meeting with Chinese business people.

  2. Bearded Git 2

    Willis’s “Ferrari” categorisation of the new ferries was silly like many things she does/says.

    Much more apt would have been to describe them as the “Volvo” option (Solid safe reliable long lasting low depreciation) which is what NZ needs.

    Though the best bet, from all the discussions I have heard, would have been three rail capable smaller “Volvo” ferries that would fit into the existing docking facilities instead of the two larger ferries ordered.

    [I replaced this with your second version of this comment, which was almost identical, and deleted that one to avoid confusion and two threads developing – Incognito]

    • Johnr 2.1

      It is my understanding that the existing terminals are unable to handle the freight growth, as well as reaching their use by date.

      Like the Coromandel road it's another demonstration of ignorance from this govt.

      There is a truism in project management. That old triangle of Cost, Time, Quality. You can only have two, you can't have; low cost, quick time and high quality. Two is the best you can hope/work towards.

    • Grey Area 2.2

      Likewise, I had a gut feeling that three ferries somewhere in size between the current ones and the now-defunct mega-ferries would have been the way to go. The Hyundai ferries just seemed to create significant issues in addition to their obvious benefits – terminal size, wash in the Sounds, no rescue tugs big enough etc.

      • Belladonna 2.2.1

        Just the reduction to two ferries increases the risk of point-source failure. If something happens to one of them (and the possibilities are legion) – then your lift capacity is reduced by 50%. With 3 ferries – the risk is reduced to 33%.

      • Cricklewood 2.2.2

        We dont have a big enough rescue tug for the current ferries.

  3. Visubversa 3

    Great explanation of a current phenomenon.

    "There was something about this exchange that got right to the heart of the recurring pattern of the trans debate, which so often goes something like this:

    • Person raises difficult questions or concerns
    • That person is swiftly accused of hate and bigotry
    • The evidence used to prove this bigotry is false or dependent on words being redefined.
    • All of the focus then goes on proving the bigotry, often by arguing the redefined words, rather than the person’s original concern.

    (Side note: this is exactly how the charity Birthrights were able to claim that by saying ‘obstetric violence is violence against women’, I was ‘disputing that obstetric violence could happen to trans or non binary people’. Same pattern.)"

    • Barfly 3.1

      I normally try to keep well away from the whole trans huha but just to be pedantic obstetric violence could occur to trans men and the non binary so I guess I'm agreeing with you there. Generally i tend to agree with most of the TERF positions regarding trans women. Apologies for the sloppy phrasing and formatting I haven't shaken off last nights painkillers yet.

      • Visubversa 3.1.1

        There are only one sort of person to whom obstetric violence could be administered. Those are female people, women, and sometimes girls. There is not a single person on this earth who has been born from anything other than a female body. You can call yourself anything you like, but every drop of your blood tells the truth about your sex.
        And “TERF” is a slur, usually accompanied by threats of violence.

  4. Barfly 4

    Well turned 65 today – yay I have aged out of the coming RW attack on supported living one annoyance though is that I remember back in the 2000's the accomodation supplement for superannuats only counted superannuation as 50 cents in the dollar for the purpose of calculating the accomodation supplement – I guess that went the way of the Dodo during one of the many changes they had in the 2000's frown bah humbug.

    • Patricia Bremner 4.1

      Many Happy Returns Barfly.yes Hope the sun is shining where you are, and don't forget to claim the living alone allowance, (plus lawn mowing, housekeeping if you qualify.) All the very best.

    • Louis 4.2

      Happy Birthday, Barfly.

  5. Matiri 5

    Cost doubles to $500 million within months for the Hope bypass, just south of Richmond. It's maybe 4 km. But that's OK we’re still committed, it's a key project says Simeon Brown.

    • Ad 5.1

      Ain't no doubt Mayor Nick Smith knows how to work it.

      That Ruby Bay bypass is civil engineering art.

      • Incognito 5.1.1

        A ‘Bentley’ bypass when a ‘Toyota Corolla’ option could suffice? What’s $500 million among friends, anyways?

        • Bearded Git

          My thoughts exactly….surely with this kind of blow out funding should be withdrawn immediately?

    • SPC 5.2

      Specific project costs were yet to be developed, but the project could have an investment range of between $400m and $700m, he said.

    • UncookedSelachimorpha 5.3

      ..meanwhile, initiatives to encourage walking and cycling are halted.

      Minister pulls brakes on cycling and walking initatives

      In a letter to local authorities Simeon Brown said he told the New Zealand Transport Authority (Waka Kotahi) to halt work on cycling and walking initiatives.

      • mikesh 5.3.1

        Cyclists, as taxpayers, have a right to use the roads; and, therefor, they have a right to use the roads in safety. I'm not sure that motorists have a right to park their cars at the kerb, and this seems more likely to obstruct traffic than cycle lanes.

      • Grey Area 5.3.2

        Simeon Brown is a malignant little twerp. To see someone like him a Minister with important portfolios is just galling.

        He said "cycling and walking initiatives were a waste of time and money". Let's just do more of the same that's failed us for decades shall we? More roads says National, not real change to improve our communities and environment .

        I'm still struggling looking out for ideas about how we limit the damage these retrogressive, vengeful clowns are already doing. They are more than vindictive and incompetent, I'm wondering if it's not over the top to call them evil.

      • Mike the Lefty 5.3.3

        The Minister for Ford Rangers is obviously enjoying being King of the Roads.

  6. Pat 6

    A thought experiment that may address (some of) the concerns expressed here (and in other places)

    Maori are disproportionately represented in most negative economic/health and social indicators. The causes are usually founded in the reduced economic circumstance, something attempted to be redressed by all manner of initiatives including the Treaty settlement process.

    Maori as a group have the potential to remedy this if we examine the origin of economic prosperity.

    Financial investment …or banking.

    One of the reasons given for a lack of development of Maori assets is the inability to leverage those assets in the mainstream banking system for the benefit of the various Iwi groups.

    The Maori population is approximately 900,000 (in NZ) with a median age some 12 years younger than the general population (25/27 years Maori, 37/39 General)….that is a significant customer base (and workforce asset) to a profitable banking and investment organisation.

    I note that the CoOperative Bank in NZ started as union credit union and is now a fully fledgd bank (with all that enables) with a current membership of around 100,000.

    The key to Maori success is in their hands if they wish to seize it….and they can develop how and when they so desire.

    Curiously this would also place them in the position of (potentially) being a creditor to the State.

  7. SPC 7

    Culture moves on, Gen Z makes way for Generation A, bottom feeders vs the surveillance state. This is deeply Freudian – sleep awake up living by the apple phone I pad device (with camera).

  8. Ad 8

    Good to see that sack of shit Rudi Guiliani go down for US$140m for defaming 2 electoral officials.

  9. Ffloyd 9

    I’ve been wondering as to how Nicola Willis is qualified to be running our country’s finances?

    • Robin The Goodfellow 9.1

      Seems to be as well qualified as Grant Robertson was though I do note that Roger Douglas, as an accountant, was probably more qualified than either of them and see how well that worked out for NZ

      • Stephen D 9.1.1

        Michael Cullen was an historian. He didn’t do too bad a job.

      • SPC 9.1.2

        Both Muldoon and Douglas were accountants. Richardson a lawyer who adopted an economic ideology. Like English a literature degree (but working at Treasury English would have absorbed an understanding of public sector accounting and government economic statistics) and he hired Willis as an intern (pre government 2008) and then she worked for Key 2008-2012. Then came the Fonterra job and back to politics via year at NZ Initiative.

        Generally history, economic and political history in particular, gives important perspective.

        The accountant with a basic competence for government would understand the concept of provision for a future cost (including maintenance of existing infrastructure – including public housing and also an aging population) and also the notion of an across time budget balance (an understanding of the economic cycle).

        But that is not enough. A wise accountant would seek to retain assets that rise in value across time, for they keep future borrowing costs down – which provides on-going capacity to make investments.

        There is the modernisation of an economy – new infrastructure (say broadband), R and D base for industry sector competiveness, worker training etc. That means a strategy for lower business borrowing costs and incentivising venture capital formulation and investment in (sustainable) economic growth. The key term driving productivity gains.

        That means a tax system that discourages speculation on ownership of existing assets with borrowed money.

        Basically there is little indication Willis has any idea.

        • bwaghorn

          Then came the Fonterra job and back to politics via year at NZ Initiative.

          Gee if I was cynical I'd suggest the fonterra job was a hand picked gig to give a purpose built tool for the right "real world " business credit on the cv, otherwise she might get called a career politician!!

      • Belladonna 9.1.3

        Muldoon was also an accountant….

    • Anne 9.2

      She's a brash loudmouth with a spiteful streak. End of story.

      • Grey Area 9.2.1

        I agree about the spiteful streak, Anne.

        The nastiness just oozes out. She can't help herself.

    • Belladonna 9.3

      Bluntly, the same way that every other Finance Minister has been qualified – by being a member of the largest party in the government, and having the finance portfolio within that party.

      There are no formal qualifications required for the job. I think that only the Attorney General has a requirement for a related qualification (being a lawyer) – and that may be convention, rather than a legal requirement.

  10. Drowsy M. Kram 10

    A week is a long time in politics – our coalition govt exemplifies short term ‘planning’.
    Imho, Aotearoa NZ will fast become even more of a playground for speculators.

    Ditching the ‘Ferrari’ ferries [16 Dec 2023]
    In other words, it was a choice that will enable the Government still to deliver tax cuts.

    But it leaves us with a crucial question. Should we be a country that builds resilient infrastructure for the long term or one that focuses on short-term patch-ups when necessary?

    The policy bonfire of environment protection: 10 examples that threaten public health [15 Dec 2023]
    With health and well-being already seriously impacted by environmental degradation, the new Government must be asked why it would undo existing environmental protections, and what consequences this would have for our communities.

    Anne Salmond on the Treaty debate: Māori and Pākehā think differently
    [15 Dec 2023]
    New Prime Minister Christopher Luxon needs to step in, stop the minor parties’ anti-democratic posturing and weave the people back together, writes Dame Anne Salmond

  11. Adrian 11

    Today my wife and I went to the 2nd Toitu te Tiriti March in Blenheim , twice as big as last weeks one all instigated by local rangatahi and led impressively by Honey Marzola Wairepo. She is only 18 and did it because “Blenheim is a little shy “ so she and friends organised one, It is a big ask to front a protest of any type but she carries it off with style and mana. I congratulated her afterwards for her leadership and asked if she wished to be in politics, the answer of course was a resounding yes. She’s on her way, she’s the real thing, look out for her. The future is in good hands if Honey is an example of her generation.

    • Patricia Bremner 11.1

      Thanks for that Adrian. yes

    • Ad 11.2

      +100 time to march and speak up again

      • Obtrectator 11.2.1

        Just be sure to do it while you can, in case this lot decide to take a leaf out of the UK's book regarding "inconvenient" protests ….

        • Ad

          In September 2019 about 170,000 New Zealanders – led by students – marched for more climate change urgency.

          Thousands more turned out in March this year. Far, far more than anything that turned out against vaccinations.

          It can be done and the latent demand is strong.

  12. Hunter Thompson II 12

    Christmas wishes to all TS contributors. The world and its inhabitants are facing huge problems, but as individuals we can all do something.

    How about:

    1. Plant a native tree

    2. Help a friend or neighbour in some way

    3. Donate what you can reasonably afford to a charity.

    Sure, those things won't end the conflict in Gaza or Ukraine, but at least they're a start.

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