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Open mike 16/08/2016

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, August 16th, 2016 - 51 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

openmikeOpen mike is your post.

For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose. The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).

Step up to the mike …

51 comments on “Open mike 16/08/2016”

  1. Paul 1

    Excellent discussion on the government’s new proposed bulk funding of education.

    • Garibaldi 1.1

      Bulk funding, performance pay, privatisation, Hekia Parata. It’s our worst nightmare come true. Top marks to Catherine Delahunty , she leaves Chris Hipkins for dead. I am deeply saddened to be witnessing the acceleration of inequality in this country and it is most apparent in our schools , which is a bad indicator .

      • In Vino 1.1.1

        Well, let’s hope that the teacher unions get some support if they actually stand firm and fight. Who else will?

  2. Paul 2

    Why does sport in New Zealand prevail over the news?

    Compare New Zealand

    with China

    with France

    with Germany

    with Russia

    • tc 2.1

      Ticks the distraction box Paul. Then comes the fear and dog whistling memes that P houses, road incidents, crime, various offshore ‘terror’ events to help sell the new spying measures and more.

      Doesn’t leave much room for actual local hardcore fact based issues like our waterways, housing, education, health, industrial accidents etc

      JK’s bestie Richie only has to scratch his arse and he’s back filling up the vacuous space that passes for the NZ msm.

      DP is being refined and trialled out with some new players like Quinn and will be a useful tool in nact re-election strategy.

    • locus 2.2

      Because the NZ Herald is owned by APN? And papers from APN, News Ltd., and Faifax are setting the bar high for their readers?


    • James 2.3

      Because it’s the latest sporting event in the world and IS news.

      Shock horror. People are interested in different things.

      • James 2.3.1

        ^ largest (sorry no edit on mobile)

        • Draco T Bastard

          How many people are actually following it?

          • alwyn

            “How many people are actually following it”

            Quite a lot, if you believe the MSM news sites which list their most popular stories.
            On Stuff we find that 7 of the top 10 are about the Olympics.
            On the New Zealand Herald it is 3 of their top 5.
            Hard to say that people really aren’t interested given that result.

            • Draco T Bastard

              What’s the percentage of the population actually reading them?

              What’s the percentage of population put off even going to the MSM because it’s dominated by sport?

      • Garibaldi 2.3.2

        Crap — it is not news, it is only sport (or in your case ‘bread and circuses’).

        • TC

          Exactly so not a lead story then and the football world cup is the largest event.

          olympics is just a current distraction which runs till the paraolympics concludes probably with some drugged athletes stories stretching it out till xmas distractions can commence.

  3. Cinny 3

    Watching Trump give a speech live from Youngstown about foreign policy, the man is insane. He wants to keep Guantanamo open and establish a Commission of Radical Islam, says he will work with Israel, Nato and Russia. USA is screwed, what a choice, poor buggers.

    • Yep and the madness will spread if tump gets in – gonna be an outrageous next few years.

    • Lanthanide 3.2

      The speech was notable for how he delivered it – prepared remarks. Almost all of the time, he’s just turned up somehow and spoken off the cuff, which is what has gotten him in trouble.

      I think it’s too little, too late. It might arrest his decline in the polls, but probably won’t do a lot to reverse it.

      • TheExtremist 3.2.1

        Trump is going to get completely smashed (unless your CV, who insists, despite all evidence to the contrary, that Trump is going cream it).

        • Lanthanide

          Before the convention, it was hard to really discount CV’s position.

          But since the convention, Trump’s well and truly blown it. Unless there’s a big turnaround in his polling, CV’s simply in fantasy land.

          • TheExtremist

            Trump has 9 or so weeks to turn it around. Impossible I would say – everything out of his mouth is either a lie, a vainglorious boast or a word salad

            • Lanthanide

              Even if he just becomes somewhat rational in his positions, I don’t think he’ll be able to turn the numbers around sufficiently to win.

              Seems like his only chance is a black swan event or a new scandal emerging about Hillary, possibly the emails that wikileaks say they have and they’re saving up to deliberately release to change the course of the election (and given the alternative is Trump, this hardly seems responsible of them).

      • McFlock 3.2.2

        You can’t turn a demagogue into a statesman.

        Frankly I think that going to prepared statements is a mistake – they needed to find a happy medium between impromptu (and completely nuts) and scripted (and wooden). Now I think they’re boldly grasping the worst of both worlds.

      • Andre 3.2.3

        He’s managed to deliver a scripted prepared speech all the way through without losing it at least once before. But it bores his audience, which is the immediate feedback he can feel. It just makes the inevitable train-wreck in the next 48 hours even bigger.

  4. Pat 4

    have just listened to Little and Woodhouse on immigration, and pose a question for comment for the day.

    What are the advantages of increased population?
    (a policy that was never put to the public for debate by either party/ government)

    • DH 4.1

      I wonder if a larger population is the goal Pat. It seems to me people naturally think ‘larger population’ when it’s really about ‘growing population’

      If we had zero population growth NZs construction industry would not have a lot of work and construction makes up a pretty significant chunk of today’s GDP. How many new buildings would go up if there was already enough to go around?

      If one was to look at growth as the real objective one might ask the question; what if the growth was to be halted? It looks to me like the Govt can’t halt the population growth because it’s now sustaining the economy.

      • Pat 4.1.1

        ” It looks to me like the Govt can’t halt the population growth because it’s now sustaining the economy.”

        yes, but what advantages does increasing our population bring?…and assuming you see advantages what is desirable population target for NZ?

        • DH

          I think you may have missed my point there Pat. Mine was there is no desirable population target because that target doesn’t exist. The politicians only want population growth, they don’t want a larger population per se.

          As for advantages. Population growth creates certain types of demand for goods & services that a static population doesn’t. It’s an economic stimulant. Is that an advantage? I don’t think so, others may.

          • Draco T Bastard

            Population growth creates certain types of demand for goods & services that a static population doesn’t.

            Which, of course, is also why they want more export markets. It increases the number of people that can be sold to. They seem to forget that each nation wants the same thing and so the growth that they want isn’t really there.

          • Pat

            don’t think i missed your point….a short term stimulus to the economy that is politically advantageous……but no long term advantage is what i take from your posts

            • DH

              Pretty much, with reservations. Politicians can milk immigration for a very long time so it’s certainly to their advantage.

              Look at the present situation for example. We have a severe housing shortage which can only be attributed to population growth. They could halt immigration now and it would take up to a decade or more to build the houses & commercial properties that would fully satisfy today’s demand.

              The economic stimulant isn’t all a short term sugar rush. It has stages and the second stage is (probably) a big construction boom that could run for years after the population growth is halted. I’d be surprised if National don’t make that a plank at the next election, it’s reached that time.

              When it’s been thoroughly milked & all possible gains exhausted, well, kickstart the immigration cycle again.

              • Pat

                and yet this “short term” economic stimulus can hardly be considered entirely positive…so on balance is it an advantage?

                • DH

                  I don’t personally believe it’s of any overall benefit, but then my opinion doesn’t count for much.

                  My thinking is the catch with immigration is the benefits are enjoyed early and the real costs imposed late. Politicians of the day can bask in the reflected glory of a stimulated economy and the pollies of tomorrow have to sort out the mess. Tomorrow’s mob just start the cycle again & pass the crap onto the next lot…. and so on.

                  I do think the politicians from both sides are cynically deceiving us when they talk about immigration. It is growth for growth’s sake and they will never admit it, instead feeding us bollocks about the alleged utopia of a larger population.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    It is growth for growth’s sake and they will never admit it, instead feeding us bollocks about the alleged utopia of a larger population.

                    To a certain point a larger population makes a difference but, like many things, it’s subject to diminishing returns. IMO, we’re way past the point where a larger population makes us better off because of the limited size of NZ and we already have enough population to do anything we want.

                    The problem we have now is because of the focus upon trade, and especially exports, we have a massive misallocation of workers. As an example we have 7% of working age population in farming instead of the 2% needed to feed ourselves. Freeing up those people from farming would give us many thousands of people to put into health, R&D and many other aspects of the economy that would be better for NZ than farming. And that doesn’t even take into account the damage that excessive farming is doing to our environment.

    • s y d 4.2

      Ahh, well Pat, you see in a perfect free market economy, supply and demand will determine the equilibrium price for goods and services, all other things being equal, old chap.

      As an example, with an increase in population, demand for, say, land and housing will naturally increase, supply is relatively inelastic as it were and thus the equilibrium price will tend to rise – this is a good thing and is simply a market law and a reflection that all is well in the world and such. One does love ones asset to appreciate.

      A corollary of this increased population is that supply of labour is also increased and what would normally be a rather inelastic curve can then be made veeeery elastic. So we can then see that with increasing labour supply the equilibrium price will come down, even when there is a large demand for said labour generated by house construction due to increasing population. Again this is a good thing and is simply a law of ecocomics and an indisputable truth. One does loves unit costs to come down at the same time as margins increase.

      So you see Pat, it’s a win-win situation and simply an outcome of the interplay of supply a dn deamnd and the invisible hand.
      You do remember the invisible hand? It’s an important part of the perfect free market economy, but I digress.

    • DH 4.3

      And what about you Pat, what’s your thoughts on it?

      • Pat 4.3.1

        in short ….it is a bogus argument….if you cannot make your society/economy work with x amount of population, increasing that population doesn’t change that fact.

        couple of recent examples…..

        Ireland, Celtic tiger, massive inflows of population and capital, bubbles and debt, underlying basis of society/economy unchanged…….massive crash, and they fin themselves worse off than they were pre boom.

        Greece, higher population and density, similar economy (tourism and ag based) however their higher population has been of no benefit in resolving their fundamental problems.

        NZ has enjoyed (though disappearing) a relatively unpolluted environment that has supported our lifestyles and economy solely due to our lack of population density through our (short) history….it is this which currently makes us a highly desirable destination for migration, both short and long term despite our distance from the rest of the world and the associated costs.

        Kiwis (despite what we may tell ourselves) are inherently no less prone to destroying our environment than any other group, increase that density and we risk destroying that which makes us desirable and arguably advantaged.

        • DH

          Are we capable of prospering, or even holding our own, with a static population though Pat? Take Japan for example. A highly industrialised nation and they’ve been struggling for years with their zero population growth. Realistically what chance does NZ have, we don’t have much industry worth mentioning so what will drive our economy?

          • Pat

            the point is those solutions will be the same irrespective of population size….ipso facto, population increase is not the solution.

          • Draco T Bastard

            …we don’t have much industry worth mentioning so what will drive our economy?

            What has always driven the economy – development. Increasing productivity frees up people to work on other things.

            It is only capitalism and the drive for ever higher profits for the shareholders/bludgers that requires an ever growing population.

  5. Rosemary McDonald 5

    Government takes another shot at charities…removes the right to appeal tax privileges status.


    “When New Zealand’s oldest women’s rights organisation, the National Council of Women, lost their charitable status in 2010, their members fought back, eventually regaining it on appeal in 2013. However, their experience demonstrated the risk to charities in New Zealand who engage in activities that cause embarrassment to the Government and which could be defined as “political advocacy”.”

    God forbid charities actually do any advocacy….

    • TC 5.1

      Nobody does nasty like nact do, its a masterclass in a cut here a snip there a law change over there etc

    • Wensleydale 5.2

      I think National know they’re probably going down in flames at the next election, so they’re engaged in a scorched earth policy. Push as much toxic legislation through as we can before we’re hurled from the battlements, and let the new government deal with the aftermath. It buys their benefactors and accomplices time to bed in the ideological poison, and if everything goes according to plan, it’ll be so difficult for the incoming administration to extract and/or neutralise, they’ll likely not even bother.

      Bastards, one and all.

  6. Repateet 7

    Being a young innocent thing I don’t understand why, when someone stands up in Parliament and tells a downright lie, that someone cannot stand up and say that what was said was a lie.

    Is it that somehow the thought of being evil and brought into disrepute by the suggestion that there might be a liar there, is actually a greater evil than the fact that someone is a proven liar.

    Brought about by the fact that John Key did his lying scumbag act in Parliament today but it was not allowed to be pointed out for what it was.

    • McFlock 7.1

      Apparently an insult to someone’s reputation is worse than an insult to their intelligence…

    • Wensleydale 7.2

      Apparently, calling a proven liar “a liar” is unparliamentary behaviour. The Westminster model is like some bizarre parallel dimension, where up is down and black is white, and even if something is demonstrably true… it shall not be mentioned for fear of besmirching the reputation of some smirking arsehole chortling on the front benches.

      Key’s a bit like Voldemort in regard to his reputation for playing fast and loose with the facts — He Who Shall Not Be Named.

      • DoublePlusGood 7.2.1

        Well, then Labour, the Greens, and NZ First all must therefore, in succession, make a complaint to the speaker about John Key lying in the house and all, in succession, get thrown out and censured by the chair.
        And then, they must refuse to leave.
        Meek compliance will get them nowhere.

    • Rodel 7.3

      Repateet. I agree and I’d like to hear, ” The honourable XXX is a liar.”
      What really irritates me though, is the use of the honorific? term, “honourable” ….The ‘honourable Gerry Brownlee ‘etc. What arrant, up themselves, pretentious nonsensical language.

      Imagine an MP going home to their spouse or whatever and proudly saying…..”Guess what dear-As from tomorrow at work, I qualify to be called ‘Honourable’.

      (would be eye-rolls abound in our house amidst the laughter).

      But ! but! -they actually take it seriously!

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