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Open Mike 16/05/2017

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, May 16th, 2017 - 98 comments
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98 comments on “Open Mike 16/05/2017”

  1. Rosemary McDonald 1

    Mike King quite rightly tells the Government and the Misery of Health just what they can do with their new happy clappy Draft Suicide Prevention Plan.

    Good coverage from RNZ…http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/morningreport/audio/201843931/government-plays-down-mike-king-quitting-suicide-advisory-panel

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/checkpoint/audio/201843892/prime-minister-not-surprised-by-mike-king's-resignation

    and Stuff…http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/health/92586882/comedian-says-suicide-panel-would-be-funny-if-people-werent-dying

    and the Herald….http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?
    c_id=1&objectid=11856284
    ———————————–
    “One of the first things the panel agreed on was that there should be a clear target for the country to move towards.

    “We want the NZ public to take this seriously – we wanted to set a clear percentage goal on suicide prevention. So we decided to reduce suicide by 20 per cent over the next 10 years,” he said.

    But the draft proposal has removed that target and is extremely vague in its aspirations, King says.

    In a letter to Ministry of Health director of mental health Dr John Crawshaw, King resigned from the panel saying he is growing “increasingly concerned” about the plan.

    “The plan has buried all new ideas in such impenetrable language they are beyond recognition and unlikely to ever see the light of day.

    “It is a strategy that is so broad in its effort to please everyone it will eventually collapse under the weight of public expectation. This will please no one except you and the politicians you serve,” King wrote.

    “It would be funny if people weren’t dying,” he added.

    King says the draft plan ignores recommendations from the panel, continues to fund “failed experiments”, is an almost word-for-word repeat of the last strategy – and will further isolate vulnerable Kiwis.”
    ———————————————–
    They use these high profile individuals to give credibility to these Expert Advisory Panels, Technical Advisory Groups and the like. More often than not it is a pantomime of discussion and consultation, and any Plan or Strategy produced has largely been writ by some petty minded bureaucrat without much if any reference to the work of the panel.

    Its usually predetermined….and often as KIng points out…a copy and paste of previous documents.

    Its about time someone called them out on this….these Advisory Groups are more often than not shams…its fraudulent, and borders on corrupt.

    Respect to Mike King for not only refusing to take any further part in this but, for going public. If they are going to use his fame to validate their little performances, then its only right he uses his fame to expose their crap.

    • ianmac 1.1

      The interview with the Director of Mental Health was incredibly dense and non committal.
      From 1:36.
      http://www.radionz.co.nz/audio/player?audio_id=201843938

      • Whispering Kate 1.1.1

        I could not believe it when Mike King on the AM Show this morning said that there were 570 accepted suicides in the past year but there were another 500 plus that were not in the official stats. People who were found at he bottom of cliffs, people who had any alcohol or drugs in their systems and had left a note/letter. obvious car crash deaths – all were not entered in the official stats. How can that be – if that is not fudging the statistics I don’t know what it is. Surely that is a kind of fraud.

        Every day this Government shows utter contempt for their citizens – its getting worse by the minute. No wonder people are suffering from depression in untold numbers.

        • michelle 1.1.1.1

          They don’t have to fudge them Whispering Kate they just don’t bother collecting them

      • michelle 1.1.2

        was the interview dense ianmac or the director or both

    • Draco T Bastard 1.2

      More often than not it is a pantomime of discussion and consultation, and any Plan or Strategy produced has largely been writ by some petty minded bureaucrat without much if any reference to the work of the panel.

      By the sounds of things they’re not referencing back to the academic research available either.

      Its about time someone called them out on this….these Advisory Groups are more often than not shams…its fraudulent, and borders on corrupt.

      If there’s not change then it doesn’t border on corrupt but is corrupt. They’re there to prevent change rather than bring it about. A show of Doing Something while doing nothing.

      • Rosemary McDonald 1.2.1

        The Misery of Health are the experts on this.

        When the Gummint decided not to take the ‘paid family carers’ to the Supreme Court back in 2012 the Miserly announced a Technical Advisory Group of ‘stakeholders’ had been set up to gather information and work on a plan. Upon closer scrutiny, every single member of that TAG had some kind of financial relationship with the Ministry or wider government. Every single bloody one of them.

        We never saw a report from the group…and they were sworn to secrecy regarding discussions during their meetings.

        I spent far too much time over the next few years periodically looking into various Advisory Groups, their members, terms of references, periodic reports (if any), draft plans/strategies and ultimate policy/law changes.

        TBH…what I learned was just about enough to make one lose the will to live.

        This shit totally undermines our government, our democratic system.

        There is often a legislative requirement for ministries and department to ‘consult’…almost inevitably results in a pantomime.

        And nothing ever fucking changes.

        • Draco T Bastard 1.2.1.1

          Upon closer scrutiny, every single member of that TAG had some kind of financial relationship with the Ministry or wider government. Every single bloody one of them.

          We never saw a report from the group…and they were sworn to secrecy regarding discussions during their meetings.

          Which tells us that it was corruption from the get go and that every single person involved in it should be in jail.

          This shit totally undermines our government, our democratic system.

          And it’s been going on for a long time and needs addressing with some decent rules and laws against corruption.

          And nothing ever fucking changes.

          And that’s because the people are letting the corrupt arseholes at the top get away with it.

          This shit needs to be reported and the people need to demand the changes needed.

          • Rosemary McDonald 1.2.1.1.1

            “…and that every single person involved in it should be in jail.”

            And every single one of them will protest that they were representative of some aspect of the disability/carer community…and hey…they had a job, a place on the committee/board of the advocacy group/NGO and they do know what they’re talking about. And besides, the system is set up that ONLY official DPOs (Disabled People’s Organisations) have an automatic seat at the table. Of course…the fact that these DPO’s and Carer organisations receive gummint $$$ adds to their credibility and impartiality.

            There has just been a rewrite of the NZ Disability Strategy and two rounds of public workshops were held around the regions. Organised by the Office for Disability Issues. Partner and I went…’cos boy oh boy do we have issues regarding supports for those with very high and complex care needs. The person who took the lead at our table works for a provider and is also deeply involved in an official DPO. My partner…obviously the highest care needs person at the table (who unlike many in this category is capable of speaking for himself)… was effectively shut down and our extremely valid concerns never made to the whiteboard up the front. The same thing happened with others in our informal network at other regional meetings.

            The Draft Strategy was aspirational garbage and not a patch on the original that had clearly defined Objectives. Partner refused to attend second meeting upon reading the crap in the draft. However, I did pop into the venue and have a wee chat with the top nob from the ODI. I told her that my partner would not be participating this time and why. Usual platitudes. I told her the Draft was rubbish, and failed to address any of the most significant issues…even the ones that the UN gave the Gummint a stern ticking off over. Ho hum. I suggested, as a parting shot, that when the participants were all assembled she asked for a show of hands of those paid for or associated with a government funded organisation.

            Looked like I’d asked her to to swallow a rotting dead rat.

            Now there is a “Systems Transformation” process underway involving selected ‘members of the disability community’. “This is sooo important we want to get it right!!!”
            Yep…you guessed it…including the person who excluded my disabled partner’s concerns at the first meeting.

            And bugger me if the same names don’t pop up over and over again on all manner of different advisory groups (and the honours lists)…and they wonder why we are still fighting the same battles we were a decade or so ago.

            I’m going fishing. 🙂

            • Draco T Bastard 1.2.1.1.1.1

              Representative Democracy represents power and not the will or needs of the people and what you’ve just described shows that to a ‘T’.

  2. Ed 2

    Bill English’s neoliberal dream.
    A country where students should hungry.

    “Tertiary institutions are being forced to feed many of their students, with a new survey finding that one in six students at one Auckland institute are going without food regularly because they can’t afford it.

    Unitec, the country’s biggest campus-based polytechnic with 9100 fulltime-equivalent students, is asking its staff to donate food and linen to help students struggling to pay rising rents and other living costs.

    A survey answered by almost 2000 of its students has found that 17 per cent agree that they “regularly go without food or other necessities because I can’t afford them”.”

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11854811

    • Draco T Bastard 2.1

      In my first semester I had to borrow $1000 on my Student Loan to pay the bills. Did the dame for the second semester but the only reason I could do that was because my second semester was in a different year. Would have needed the money for the third semester as well but wouldn’t have had access to it as it’s only available once per year.

      Instead a student deal from Kiwibank of a $2000 overdraft got me through. In my third year I won a $7000 scholarship which managed to pay off the overdraft and get me through this last semester – especially now that I’ve moved. If I hadn’t of moved I still wouldn’t have been able to pay off the overdraft and even before I moved I was on a good deal for Auckland.

      Education is no longer about what’s good for the country but what makes a profit and the effect is to prevent people from learning the skills that a developing country needs and putting the people who do do the learning into deep hock – so deep in fact that they can’t really get out.

  3. Ed 3

    Bill English’s neoliberal dream.
    A country where there is no plan for mental health.

    “Mike King says a target of cutting suicides by 20 per cent in 10 years is “absolutely realistic”, as he berates the Government for its failure to include a measurable goal in its new draft suicide prevention strategy.

    The comedian and television presenter stepped down from his post on New Zealand’s suicide-prevention panel today, claiming the Government’s recently released draft plan to prevent suicide is “deeply flawed” and self-serving.

    The panel was established to help shape a strategy to reduce suicide over the next 10 years. Its Draft Suicide Prevention Plan was released to the public last month.

    But key measures – including a 20 per cent reduction in suicides over 10 years – have been removed from the plan.

    Health Minister Dr Jonathan Coleman did not answer a question from the Herald about why the target had been removed.”

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11856284

  4. AB 4

    Call me naïve (in the true sense not the Ngaro sense) – but I have been wondering about this scenario:
    If I buy a house by raising a mortgage, then put a tenant in whose rent pays the mortgage (or a portion of it) why does the tenant then not legally ‘own’ that portion of the house they paid for? And why do they not get a commensurate share of any subsequent capital gain if it is sold?
    I appreciate the logistical/administrative complexity of doing this – it’s more the principle of the thing.
    i.e. why should I be able simply to cash-cow another human being like this?
    Happy to be put straight by wiser heads on here.

    • Blackcap 4.1

      I guess its that in most cases the rent received does not cover the mortgage, forget not also the insurance and rates and maintenance that you as the owner must pay. So the capital gain/loss is the risk portion that you have for holding the asset and so if there is a capital gain in the end then that is your compensation for risk.
      Your example could work, where the rent is a portion of capital purchased, but you would have to increase rents substantially to cover costs. And then where is the incentive to purchase a property to lend?

      So in effect rents are being “subsidised” by the prospects of future capital gains for the landlords.

      I think in NZ we forget that house prices can and will fall and can fall quickly under the right conditions. It just has not happened for a long time so we are cognitively unaware of this possibility. Which leads to the inevitable “house prices never fall, its a safe investment” mentality which purports to push house prices up yet again. one day they will however come tumbling down.

      • Draco T Bastard 4.1.1

        I guess its that in most cases the rent received does not cover the mortgage, forget not also the insurance and rates and maintenance that you as the owner must pay.

        At some point the rent will cover the mortgage, the insurance and the landlords living expenses.

        So, why should the landlord get income from doing nothing?

        It just has not happened for a long time so we are cognitively unaware of this possibility.

        And that seems to be because the government has been working to ensure that they don’t and thus creating a huge bubble.

    • james 4.2

      You understand the word “Rent” right?

      You are paying for the ‘use’ of something that does not belong to you.

      Using your idea – the renter would also need to be responsible for maintenance, rent, insurance, and a share of the losses should the house value go down.

      If you want what the model you mention – there is nothing stopping you from doing a ‘shared ownership’ model with friends.

      • AB 4.2.1

        “You are paying for the ‘use’ of something that does not belong to you.”
        Not quite – you are actually paying someone else for the use of something that does not belong to them either. (Because they owe a mortgage on it). All they are really doing is passing the renter’s money on to the bank.
        That was the point I think.

        “If you want what the model you mention – there is nothing stopping you from doing a ‘shared ownership’ model with friends.”
        It’s not what I want that I’m asking about and what I want is of no interest anyway. It’s why a right exists to cash cow other human beings in this way.

        • Psycho Milt 4.2.1.1

          Not quite – you are actually paying someone else for the use of something that does not belong to them either. (Because they owe a mortgage on it).

          It might look like that, but it’s deceiving. When you buy a house and take out a mortgage to pay for it, you own the house. It’s your house. Also, in a related but separate transaction, you’ve used your house as collateral on a loan.

          You can rent out the house and use the rent received to pay back the loan you took out, but it remains your house and, more importantly, your loan, with all the risks and obligations that entails. That’s the whole point of renting: you aren’t responsible for the house and aren’t a debtor to the bank. If a renter wanted a share of ownership of the house and of any capital gain, they’d have to also take on a share of responsibility for the house and a share of the obligations arising from the debt – I wouldn’t fancy trying to negotiate that with a prospective landlord.

    • Draco T Bastard 4.3

      i.e. why should I be able simply to cash-cow another human being like this?

      Because that’s how capitalism works.

      If we want to stop that then we need to get rid of capitalism.

    • Alan 4.4

      no, the rent gives the the right to occupy, nothing else.

  5. History question: is this our James???

    “james
    8 March 2008 at 7:16 am
    i want know from national if there going to bring back the employment contracts act keys statement proves to me there is a hidden agenda in national they just dont learn i heard this week english supports assets sales that party never learns.
    if keys tried to get this reporter fired this is very very serious that is what dictators do john keys is same as vladamire putine.”

    Did Key try to get ‘wage drop’ journalist sacked?

    • gsays 5.1

      i do not think so, our james has better spelling and grammer.

      oops… haha, by the above i do mean grammar, obviously…

    • james 5.2

      Nope – not me, but I appreciate your fixation on me that you go back searching for old post.

      You need a better hobby.

    • The decrypter 5.3

      Bingo. Same james who has now strayed to the right somewhat? If so we’ve only got about 16 weeks to convince james to flee from the dark side back to his old home over here. It can be done. Every vote counts.Some old General once muttered some thing like “I shall return”; and return he did.

  6. Ad 6

    Simon Wilson notes how hard National are working to become Labour.
    I think I’d made the point a little earlier,during the Labour conference.

    https://thespinoff.co.nz/auckland/15-05-2017/national-is-cloning-labours-identity-and-other-lessons-from-its-weekend-conference/

    Also v similar to Turnbull’s budget. A Labour budget.
    Although curiously Shorten is up on him by 6% despite the biggest tax-and-spend budget in decades.

    • ankerawshark 6.1

      Ad I thought Wilson article was great. He calls out English on his lies claiming credit for ensuring the care workers got their pay increase and he has clocked what their strategy is for this years election i.e. present themselves as the caring party who are doing great things for people.

      The thing a bout Paula B showing a slide of a pair of blue shoes costing $950.00 is disgusting………………..I think this needs to be highlighted to show the greed and selfishnish of this party. Perhaps one of the clever Standard Writers could post the slide of the shoes on this site with a suitable caption…………..I can think of many myself.

    • Tim 6.2

      Simon Wilson’s been trying hard to become Labour ever since Burma Road.
      He never quite made it then so he probably has some expertise and experience “in this space”
      Oops I did it again.
      I must not comment on social media
      I must not comment on social media
      I must not comment on social media
      I must not comment on social media
      I must go and have a flat white on Ponsonby Road

      • ropata 6.2.1

        A latte and smashed avocado on toast should calm you down and help get rid of inconvenient socialist thoughts. Watch the Lamborghinis cruise by and admire the success of capitalism!
        (?) (sarc)

      • ankerawshark 6.2.2

        HI tim, I had always found Simon anti Labour and a little pro Tory. Just my take on it.

        I liked his article, because I think any swing voters reading it would be exposed to the lies Nats are telling e.g taking credit for the increase in care workers wages. Wilson doesn’t mince words there.

  7. mauī 7

    Who believes this bullshit! Of course unnamed officials who weren’t at a private meeting find the most important of secret vague information has been compromised and given to the most dangerous people in the world Russia. Peak bullshit and CNN is currently having a big cry that their fake news media wasnt allowed to take photos of the ruskies foreign minister.
    http://i.stuff.co.nz/world/americas/92620108/donald-trump-shared-highly-classified-information-with-russians-during-their-white-house-visit

    • lprent 7.1

      I do. It fits his usual pattern of behaviour of boasting, risk taking, and boundary pushing. While these are amusing in a child, they are outright dangerous in his position.

      In my view Trump is simply a uncontrolled dickhead in the wrong position. Fortunately, while he has strained the controls and limits on executive power, to date the other branches of government outside of the executive appear to be holding.

      The real question for NZ is why we should get anywhere near this kind of stupidity of the American public.

      The best thing about a Trump presidency is that I think it will eventually cause some serious clawing back of the power of the executive. You only have to look at the aftermath of the similar Andrew Jackson stupidity in the 19th century to see what kinds of factors are likely to come into play.

      • Draco T Bastard 7.1.1

        The best thing about a Trump presidency is that I think it will eventually cause some serious clawing back of the power of the executive.

        I’m kinda hoping that the same will happen here and that the power of our government will get reigned in.

        Probably wishful thinking though.

        • lprent 7.1.1.1

          The way NZ operates, there really is only the executive council. Everything else is advisory.

          The only reason that I think that it kind of works is because the country is so small, and while kiwis are not interested in politics, they tend to get irritated when the government stands on their friends and family and proceed to directly bend the ears of the idiots who think that they have the power.

          • mpledger 7.1.1.1.1

            I was thinking about that this morning. Trump can work because he can screw over a ton of people but there are plenty more waiting in the wings. In NZ there are only so many people and only so many degrees of separation between people … when someone gets hammered then there are people watching who stay silent at the time but are waiting for the wheel to turn to get their retribution.

            • lprent 7.1.1.1.1.1

              Yeah. It is the bigger state provides more room. But conversely a bigger state also develops much stronger structural defenses as well.

              Our court system isn’t bad as a defense on unbridled power. But it really doesn’t have the constitutional clout that the circuit courts have in the US.

          • Draco T Bastard 7.1.1.1.2

            And the evidence shows that it doesn’t. All those state assets were sold off against the wishes of the people and none of the political parties are keen to bring them back despite the fact that doing so would probably be quite popular.

            We have a government which does what it thinks is best rather than what the people think is best and the result is ever increasing poverty and unsustainability.

            • Enough is Enough 7.1.1.1.2.1

              Then lets vote them out

              • Draco T Bastard

                That won’t stop them doing it again whereas some rules that they can be held accountable to will.

                As I say, it’s not that the government can’t take your house off of you that stops them but the fact that there are rules for them to follow to do so.

                • ropata

                  NZ has attempted to mitigate the power of its elected dictatorship by switching to MMP but National has still managed to do plenty of underhanded shit by their campaign of PR, deception and intimidation.

                  I am thankful for our legal protections but they are not enough, we also need a strong independent MSM, better education in civics, compulsory voting in general elections, and more engagement with all sectors of society.

                  Since rogernomics our institutions have been captured by the 1% and redesigned to erode regulations, democracy, and accountability to the 99%

    • It’s true mate even your poster boy hero trump admits it. Jeeze did you read that? He admits it.

      • Bill 7.2.1

        What does he admit to Marty? Giving Russia a heads up on a potential bomb plot? Can you cut and paste a source for what Trump admitted or, if it’s from the Washington Post article, cut and paste the direct quote please?

        I’ve read the article. It was a tiresome exercise – like unraveling a tangled ball of string that you’re never going to use. Anyway, I repeated the exercise in an effort to identify any admission you might be referring to and came up blank.

        • lprent 7.2.1.1

          That wasn’t what the story was about Bill.

          Perhaps you should actually read it rather than interpreting what you think it says?

          • Bill 7.2.1.1.1

            I’ve read it. It claims Trump is a security risk and uses vague references to info about laptops as the example.

            It names not one source. It provides not one piece of verifiable information.

            It’s just another piece of bullshit coming from msm that’s meant to lead people on.

            Marty wrote that Trump admitted to something. I’m not sure what it is he’s meant to have admitted to and have asked Marty for clarification.

            • marty mars 7.2.1.1.1.1

              You are right bill. I withdraw and apologise for writing that he has admitted anything. Sorry not sure why I thought I had read it.

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                He’s admitted it now. Obviously that’s just another piece of bullshit that’s meant to lead people on or something 🙄

    • Bill 7.3

      I’m not even sure what the bullshit is that I’m meant to believe 🙂

      Allegedly some info about ISIS planning to use laptops to bring down passenger airliners was shared with Russia. That’s bad, how?

      Oh. And if that’s bad, then when why isn’t it bad that The Washington Post apparently has all the details of the supposed ISIS plot?

      If Trump told the Russians stuff he shouldn’t have told them, then who told the Washington Post the stuff that they now know and that the Russians ought not to know? Did Trump lay a call into the Washington Post too?

      It’s all headless chicken arm waving bullshit designed to get idiots in a lather about a President liberal media don’t like and spraying spittle of consternation over “Evil Russia” into the bargain.

      I wouldn’t call it ‘fake news’ maui. It’s just another episode in the fairly popular, long running and badly written soap that US liberal msm are producing in lieu of informative news pieces. It’s called propaganda 😉

      • lprent 7.3.1

        I’d presume that this is to do with the ban on laptops on aircraft from the Middle East that has been in place for quite a while (March?). The US initiated it. The ban was followed by the UK. The EU are due to discuss the intelligence and come to a decision.

        It was clearly based on some kind of intelligence which I’d guess from the lack of squawking from the middle east, was shared there.

        Perhaps you should read about it?

        But in MY well-informed opinion, Trump is a just an dumb idiot, Russia’s intelligence community has been hacking systems for decades (just as the US and China and everyone else does). The difference is that Russia now has a long history of deliberately targeting the infrastructure of elections of other states and using a veneer of plausible deniability for the credulous fools who’d prefer not to look at it.

        • Bill 7.3.1.1

          How or in what way is sharing info about a laptop ban bad?

          If (as claimed) it’s more to do with the source of that info and all about how sensitive that source is and how crucial it is to keep that source ‘under wraps’, then how is it that the Washington Post is privy to all of it?

          • McFlock 7.3.1.1.1

            Is the Washington Post privy to all the information that Trump shared with Russia?

            Because that seems to have been a leap you made. From what I can see, the laptop ban was the result of intelligence about a specific threat. Even if WaPo has all the details about the ISIS plot (doubtful), that doesn’t mean that they have all the details about how the plot was discovered. And that seems to be the bit that was classified.

            • Bill 7.3.1.1.1.1

              From the article – The Washington Post is withholding most plot details, including the name of the city, at the urging of officials who warned that revealing them would jeopardise important intelligence capabilities.

              And just before that (and in spite of all the arm waving nonsense)

              He (Trump) did not reveal the specific intelligence gathering method, but described how the Islamic State was pursuing elements of a specific plot and how much harm such an attack could cause under varying circumstances.

              • McFlock

                Most alarmingly, officials said, Trump revealed the city in the Islamic State’s territory where the US intelligence partner detected the threat.

                GIVING RUSSIA THE LOCATION THE MOST PROBLEMATIC

                The Washington Post is withholding most plot details, including the name of the city, at the urging of officials who warned that revealing them would jeopardise important intelligence capabilities.

                Ok, so the Wapo sources also broke classification (although at least they have a public interest justification).

                But there’s also this:

                The officials declined to identify the ally, but said it is one that has previously voiced frustration with Washington’s inability to safeguard sensitive information related to Iraq and Syria.

                So no, they did not give WaPo all the facts. And the problem is that Russia could well have been in a position to identify the ally and even source simply from the city, while it’s less likey for WaPo to be able to do that.

                • Bill

                  Unnamed officials who were not at the meeting didn’t share everything they didn’t know with the Washington Post while claiming that that if the alleged intelligence partner got wind of the very stuff they were telling the Washington Post about, then the intelligence relationship would be threatened and not only that, but ‘evil Russia’ might even be able to take steps to prevent that same source that’s located in a specific city from spying on Russia.

                  It’s like wee Johnny standing in front of teacher with cylon eyes and a dog turd in his hand breathlessly going on about how he’d been told that James hadn’t washed his hands after peeing before eating his school lunch and that he’d heard his mum say that James was known for spreading diseases.

                  The only intelligent reaction is a variation on the theme of “fuck off”.

                  • McFlock

                    Yeah, but at least their story is consistent.

                    Whereas you had to switch from Wapo knowing everything to not knowing everything.

                    • Bill

                      I’m devastated by the incisiveness of that comment McFlock –
                      devastated I tells ye.

                      You sure you don’t want to throw a nyah, nyah, nyah-nyah, nyah on the end for good measure?

                      Go on! 😉

                      Then I’ll pass you a bicky from the plate of elevensies (even though it’s 4 O’Clock) and we can both pretend you haven’t slipped from that pin head you were dancing on and wound up with it piercing your arse.

                    • McFlock

                      lol

                      Yeah, I got really bored when you got all cartesian to defend trump.

                      See, the thing is that the unnamed officials could either spill the beans that trump decided to give the russians shit that was specifically supposed to be secret, or they could either give Wapo enough information to verify the story and bring it to light. And apparently they leaked less to Wapo than trump leaked to the russians. Yes, this is highly irregular, but so is trump’s relationship with the russians. Desperate times, and all that.

                      You want to compare it to school kids? Fair enough. Johnny tells teacher that he heard from someone that james had a stash of drugs on the school grounds, and that he checked it and took one packet to give to teacher so teacher could verify it wasn’t bullshit.

                    • Bill

                      I was criticising a newspaper’s supposed news piece because it was a pile of steaming crap. That’s not defending Trump.

                      The unnamed officials (both ex and current) – and none of them were actually at the meeting – didn’t have any beans to spill according to the only named and therefor challengeable source in the entire piece. Everything they allege is, at best, based on claims of hear-say, or completely unsubstantiated.

                      There was an obvious enough opportunity to build a story that would feed into the meme that Trump’s an undesirable clown who’s in the pocket of an evil Russia.

                      Now I like a good story. But when it come to news I want verifiable facts, or failing that, really quite convincing circumstantial evidence that stands up to all manner of scrutiny including, but not limited to a simple application of logic.

                      There’s what I’d call a Bush culture doing the rounds at the moment (‘You’re either with us or against us.’) that I’ve no time for at all because it’s dangerous in terms of demanding accountability.

                      So again. Regardless of what I do or don’t think of Trump, the Washington Post piece, which is front paging everywhere, is garbage.

                      If they want to offer up some evidence to back what they’re claiming, then fine. But until then, it can only be regarded as scurrilous rumour and ought to be called out on that basis.

                      On the school kid level, it’s making shit up to get someone in trouble. There is no wee packet of drugs getting handed to teacher in this instance.

                    • McFlock

                      Ok, how would you report it?

                      Let’s say you’re a respected news agency that has an official who “was familiar with the exchange” telling you what happened, and a bunch of current or former officials (but who still have connections) back up the story and how serious it is.

                      How would you report it in a way that satisfied your standards of journalism?

        • xanthe 7.3.1.2

          “The difference is that Russia now has a long history of deliberately targeting the infrastructure of elections of other states” can you point me to this info, I genuinely am interested in this stuff and how its promoted by the press.

          • lprent 7.3.1.2.1

            I’m working – so you should to. Google it. The most interesting ones have happened over the last 15 years or so.

            The obvious one was the Ukrainian election before the Orange revolution and its aftermath in things like turning off gas supplies. But you will also find it in most periphery states around Russia like power into Georgia, targeted cyber-attacks in Estonia, and a number more. It has been a pattern of interference for decades. Incidentally it is also one of the strongest motivations for those periphery states to want to get into the EU and/or NATO

            The only thing that has been of note recently is the export of the pattern to states further afield.

            • Xanthe 7.3.1.2.1.1

              Ok i have googled cyber estonia and been to wikipedia
              ” As of January 2008, one ethnic-Russian Estonian national has been charged and convicted.[5]”
              And
              “The Estonian government was quick to blame the Kremlin, accusing it of being directly involved in the attacks. It was later revealed that the allegations were baseless when Estonia’s defense minister, Jaak Aaviksoo, admitted that he had no evidence linking the cyber-attacks to the Kremlin”

              But thats just wikipedia , I guess we all just know the russians did it anyway

              Me… i really not convinced.. not to say they didnt , i just developing a strong distust of this sort of allegation.

              Will do more googling as suggested … but … ? What can be really trusted?

  8. Wayne 8

    Maui,

    On what basis do you say it is wrong, apart from your own assertion.

    When serious journalists write an article in such an emphatic way, it means that they have rock solid evidence of the truth of the events they are reporting.

    As for your crap assertion that CNN is “fake news media” well, that says it all.

    You are obviously a complete convert of the Trump propaganda machine, and no doubt think that Sean Spicer is the oracle of all truth.

    • Bill 8.1

      You want to supply just a single verifiable piece of info from that dogs breakfast of a Washington Post article Wayne?

      It’s tittle-tattle. Gossip. Innuendo. Wide eyed loon, arm waving nonsense. And becoming far too commonplace

      • lprent 8.1.1

        Most journalism is. The difference is if the people making it are credible.

        Generally The Washington Post are a pretty credible source when it comes to anything related to US federal politics. While you might disagree with their interpretation (as I usually do – they are as conservative as hell), their facts are seldom overturned or proven by history to be unreliable.

        Just as RT are a rubbish when it comes to being credible about almost anything.

        • Bill 8.1.1.1

          No Lynn. The newspaper cannot be seen as a source (not a primary one). It uses or supplies sources. That’s what builds its credibility as a news source.

          What sources is the Washington Post using or supplying in this instance? What number of those can be in any way identified or verified? Same questions apply to the information the Washington Post is relaying.

          In the absence of even one named source that second tranche of questions about the information itself has to be pursued. Except, the whole thing sinks in its own bullshit anyway.

          Like I’ve pointed out. If this information (whatever it’s actually meant to be) was so top secret that neither Russia, US allies nor any number of officials were to be privy to it, then how in the name of fuck does it transpire that the Washington Post has all of it?

          I’m not going through this bullshit ‘credibility Olympics’ again. All news-sources are suspect and should be subjected to measures of critical evaluation. Some less so and some more so depending on the issues being reported.

    • mauī 8.2

      Come on Wayne, you think serious journalism is having unnamed officials leaking info from a private top level meeting? This is credible how? Particularly when the two targets Trump and Russia are the most despised things in US politics. Again alarm bells should be ringing by now.

      Sorry I didn’t realise applying some critical thinking means I’m now part of the Trump propaganda machine.

      • Bill 8.2.1

        Sorry I didn’t realise applying some critical thinking means I’m now part of the Trump propaganda machine.

        Heh – Yup. Probably makes you a Putin mole too…a Kremlin stooge…and all round ‘bad person’ 😉

      • lprent 8.2.2

        Duh! How do you think that most political stories, there here and everywhere else happen?

        Are you really that naive?

        • Bill 8.2.2.1

          Where the source has genuine reasons for anonymity, the information itself is then held up to deeper scrutiny. In this and many other instances of late there are no named sources and no verifiable information being provided.

          • mauī 8.2.2.1.1

            Yep in NZ we have applied scrutiny to leakers like a rugby stripper and Nat MPs personal assistants, and there hasn’t been much reason to disbelieve their accounts. In the case of the reporting I’ve just seen on CNN there is no scrutiny of the trump leakers and there is just breathless innuendo of how bad this is for Trump. Not sure whether to laugh or cry really, more the latter really when so many people take CNN reports at face value.

      • Wayne 8.2.3

        maui,

        As I am sure you know journalists have used unnamed sources as the basis of political and other stories for decades. That was the whole basis of breaking open Watergate.

        Just because they are unnamed, does not mean they have no credibility. The journalists typically knows who they are, and the basis of their information. In this case I am certain the journalist is talking directly to senior intelligence officials. Either the source was in the room, or the source has the confidence of someone who was in the room.

        The fact they are willing to talk to journalists speaks volumes of what they think of Trump, and his actions to date as President.

        The denials by the Trump administration are very specific, saying sources and techniques were not discussed (and sources and techniques can be tightly defined). That means everything else was discussed, probably enough to give substantial knowledge of sources and techniques, even if they were not directly stated. For instance I am sure the President would not say, “we have a source inside ISIS HQ who says ISIS are planning laptop attacks”, but he could say “we have rock solid evidence from within ISIS that ISIS are planning laptop attacks”.

        As for being part of the Trump propaganda machine that was based on you using his meme that CNN is “fake news.”

        • mauī 8.2.3.1

          We might be talking about different versions of the media. The one I’m thinking of is part of a corrupt establishment, the one that feeds debate questions to a candidate prior to a live debate and who pulls unfavourable tv programming at the request of their political masters.

        • Drowsy M. Kram 8.2.3.2

          “When serious journalists write an article in such an emphatic way, it means that they have rock solid evidence of the truth of the events they are reporting.”

          The serious journalists might even write a book or two…

        • Anne 8.2.3.3

          In this case I am certain the journalist is talking directly to senior intelligence officials. Either the source was in the room, or the source has the confidence of someone who was in the room.

          Yes. It’s obvious the sources were senior intelligence operatives – people with sufficient standing for the recipients to know it was credible material.

          There is another possible source… a remote listening device. After the Comey dismissal, I’m sure the US intelligence community would have been on high alert. They may have decided that the circumstances existing around the time of the ambassadorial visit were sufficiently extraordinary to warrant an extraordinary response.

    • xanthe 8.3

      “When serious journalists write an article in such an emphatic way, it means that they have rock solid evidence of the truth of the events they are reporting.”

      and pigs fly!

      when serious journalists who are actually journalists have rock solid evidence they point to it!

  9. barry 9

    UN condemns latest N Korean missile test
    http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-39931103

    Strangely i missed the condemnation of the many other missile tests this year
    e.g.
    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-nuclear-missile-tests-north-korea-range-reach-pyongyang-california-site-a7715331.html

  10. Andre 10

    There’s a bizarre and frightening guilty pleasure about watching the Repugs squirming about the Chump’s latest turd in the punchbowl.

    http://www.msn.com/en-nz/news/world/lawmakers-express-shock-and-concern-about-trump-disclosure-of-classified-information/ar-BBBb9GY?li=BBqdg4K&ocid=mailsignout

  11. Enough is Enough 11

    National’s Housing Come Back?

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11857003

    Too little, too late?

    • Sacha 11.1

      34,000 -8,300 to be demolished = 2.6k new houses per year, half of them for sale.
      Auckland alone is already 30-40,000 homes behind. Still, good to see this govt copying useful policies, in their usual half-arsed way.

  12. Andre 12

    Random thought of the moment: Trump certainly knows how to take his last bit of stupidity out of the news. By creating an even bigger stupidity to replace it. So how is he going to top this one? And what’s his team doing behind all the smoke?

  13. Ed 13

    Bill English’s neoliberal dream.
    A country where polluting pays.

    “The dairy industry’s year-three report on its commitment to mitigating the environmental impact of farming shows it has achieved six of 13 goals that were set out in 2013 but hasn’t yet made a dent in nitrogen loss, underlining the long-term nature of the task of improving waterways.

    Nitrogen leaching in the 2015/16 year was a national average 39 kilograms of nitrogen per hectare per year, unchanged from the previous year. Of the 13 regions surveyed using the Overseer computer modelling system, seven actually had an increase in nutrient loss, the worst being Canterbury, which climbed to 64 kg/N/ha/year from a 50 kg N/ha/year rolling average for 2013/14 and 2014/15. Otago has the second-worst deterioration, with an increase to 39 kg N/ha/year from 33 kg N/ha/year.”

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11856893

  14. Climate change report indicates challenges for NZ agriculture

    “Vivid presents three alternative scenarios, the first of which named Off
    Track New Zealand exploits low-cost reduction technologies without
    significantly cutting agricultural production and consequently does NOT
    meet the zero emissions target. The other two scenarios, named Innovative
    New Zealand and Resourceful New Zealand, both meet the target in different
    ways; the first implies a 25-30% reduction in livestock numbers and a
    shift away from pastoral to arable, horticulture and forestry, while the
    second envisages an even greater transition to forestry with an additional
    1.6 million hectares. The report notes apologetically this may entail a
    difficult transition for rural economies.”

    https://allanbarber.wordpress.com/2017/05/13/climate-change-report-indicates-challenges-for-nz-agriculture/

  15. Muttonbird 15

    This is what happens when you let the private sector loose on education and don’t insist on qualified teachers/tutors which National has done in spades.

    These so called education providers are falling over when finally scrutinised and I imagine now the blowtorch has been lit more will do so.

    Not that education is the primary purpose of theses outfits. They are a cover for the current government’s immigration rort which allows their employer mates to keep wages down while getting fatter and fatter.

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/330899/private-tertiary-institution-closed-after-widespread-plagiarism

  16. james 16

    lprent or mods – Seem to be getting a lot of DNS issues with thestandard.org.nz over the last few days.

    Even happens when clicking on a link within the site (say from replies tab), get a dns error then loads.

    Unusual behaviour – thought I would mention in case it indicates another problem….

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