- Date published:
6:00 am, May 17th, 2023 - 75 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:
Open mike is your post.
For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.
The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).
Step up to the mike …
I know we've been speculating a bit on Luxon's future as leader of the Nats, but surely his disasterous performance this past few days has added extra piquancy to proceedings. The whole taxpayer receipt thing as a marquee policy is just wild. You've had the right leaning journos bending over backwards to make excuses for the guy, which is a terrible sign. Then yesterday and his ridiculous, insincere, and thoughtless Americanesque "Thoughts and prayers" comment on the Wellington hostel fire… I mean FFS. Unforced errors day after day.
Take it easy on Luxon please Sanc. We don't want him replaced before the election.
I thought it was terrible judgment for him to turn up at the scene of the fire. What is this fire about, other than a failure of regulation and a failure of a housing market inflated by speculation? And Luxon and the Nats oppose regulation as a cost to business – and are dead keen to re-inflate the housing market (and therefore increase their personal wealth) by scrapping the brightline test, getting foreign buyers back, etc.
Having Luxon standing in front of a scene of the tragic incineration of poor people was just a reminder that he and his cronies will make all such problems worse. Then he compounds it with meaningless, repetitive, dull and unoriginal babbling. Perhaps he got bad advice suggesting that putting in an appearance would show his human side and help people "get to know" him? God forbid – I already know him too much.
Meanwhile, when considering the polls on preferred PM at five months out from an election the current incumbent has the lowest ratings of any PM since MMP was introduced.
Luxon is behind 2 of the Opposition leaders but ahead of the other 5 in the 8 elections for which numbers are available.
However keep up with your dreams of how popular Chippie is and how everybody hates Luxon.
Luxon is the only thing the left have going for it, why on earth would you actually be hoping he gets rolled?
The incumbent prime minister is polling at low 20s and has the charisma of a telemarketer.
God forbid they roll Luxon, if they roll Luxon, you're looking at Nicola Willis or god forbid, Erica Stanford
Regardless of whether the left sees it or not, both of those women would be extremely popular as leaders and drain middle class female votes from Labour.
It's neck and neck in party polls because of Luxons unrelatability, if you put Stanford or Willis up against Hipkins and we're looking at a 2008 or 2011 result for National.
The people who liked Key but then voted for Ardern in 2017 and 2020 will rush back to the National party with open arms for Nationals.
Stanford imo is Nationals next pm.
Luxon is probably quite safe at the moment, his caucus are too busy writing their acceptance speeches and trying to quietly cut the throats of their fellow tory MPs to pay much attention to what he is doing.
I think Labour has just lost the Christchurch vote.
Christchurch voters will be pissed off with Labour every time they take a drink of disgusting chlorinated water.
All National has to do is to promise to restore unchlorinated water to Christchurch and there will be a landslide to National.
All Christchurch had to do in 2016 was to spend some $40 million to secure the water supply against contamination. There are 400,000 residents there- it would cost only 20 flat whites per person to remedy! https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/national/313670/christchurch-city-council-to-vote-on-chlorinating-water
The council has spent millions on upgrading our water supply in order to meet government requirements. But, the goal posts keep shifting.
Our water is fantastically managed here, and we have never had an outbreak of sickness due to water quality that I am aware of.
My understanding is Chlorine has been used intermittently in the Chch water supply? Back in 2018(??) Chch were talking about using UV and ozone treatments to avoid the use of Chlorine. What happened to that?
Yes it has, if required. But only as long as necessary.
The council has spent a fortune upgrading our infrastructure to meet what they understood to be the standard for an exemption. But, they have now found the goal-posts have moved.
People in Christchurch will be hopping mad over this. I don't think the government realises how bigger deal this is for Christchurch.
Heavy rain eh – "Chance in a million!"
As far as tsmithfield (@3.1.1) is aware, ChCh has "never had an outbreak of sickness due to water quality". Was that also the case in HN, prior to 2016?
Alas, many Kiwis remain wilfully deaf to some 'inconvenient' wake-up calls.
Thanks Drowsy. I personally am in favour of local solutions. In this case it sems the regulator is being a bit heavy handed?
And people don't realise if you take a bacterium like Campylobacter, some get no illness, some mild, minority will be hospitalised and even die from the complications.
Put those proportions into a city of 400,000 and you get significant number of serious illness and death for a slip up like Havelock North.
Absolutely. Although it seems that unless you get above 5ppm, Chlronation has little impact on Campylobacter. (PDF) Effect of Drinking Water Chlorination on Campylobacter spp. Colonization of Broilers (researchgate.net)
Can't see how you draw that conclusion.
The council got their own assessment done and established that things were below standard and it will take about 5 years to fix.
How is that not local?
It is local. It's the water regulator that isn't.
But the water regulator hasn't done anything according to above so how can they be heavy handed?
Christchurch told to chlorinate its drinking water after bid for exemption | RNZ News
The water regulator has told Chch to chlorinate its water against it's wishes.
I’m picking up on TSimithfields point that the Council ” spent a fortune upgrading our infrastructure to meet what they understood to be the standard for an exemption. But, they have now found the goal-posts have moved.” https://thestandard.org.nz/open-mike-17-05-2023/#comment-1950187
Maybe this, from the same article, had something to do with it.
In February 2021, a weeks-long boil notice water was issued for parts of Banks Peninsula after dead animals were found in the Akaroa water supply.
"Disinfection of drinking-water supplies with chlorine is widely regarded as one of the most significant
public health interventions, reducing the incidence of waterborne disease globally," a 2017 WHO report said.
Originally though it was clearly a council decision around 2018.
The council voted for chlorination in January because some of the city's 156 wells are at risk of contamination during flooding.
At the time, it promised chlorination would last only a year.
But a council report released last week said that was not long enough to upgrade some of the wells and stop the chlorine.
Regulators are often viewed as "being a bit heavy handed" prior to a failure.
Of greater ‘concern’ (to me, being somewhat risk-averse) are 'regulators' that don't learn from past failures:
Maybe the manifold problems we currently face locally and globally are crowding out lessons from the past?
What 'past failures' in Christchurch are you referring to?
Was noting the common perception that regulators/regulations are "a bit heavy handed" at times – see "optimism followed by disappointment".
Re ChCh and regulatory failures, leaky buildings 'spring' to mind.
I'm sure you can think of examples if you put your mind to it – regulatory failures can occur for a number of reasons.
The CTV building collapse may have been due in part to inadequate regulations – the ChCh (and later Kaikōura) earthquakes prompted a regulatory rethink about what is considered acceptable earthquake risk in Aotearoa NZ – and some might say 'not before time'.
Hopefully, regulatory organisations all over NZ are currently re-evaluating the risks associated with flooding, and revising their recommendations, regulations and standards accordingly.
And then there's water fluoridation – there's always fluoridation!
These aren't examples of "Regulators are often viewed as "being a bit heavy handed" prior to a failure." Quite the opposite.
Nearly 7 years after the tragic consequences of Campylobacter contamination in Havelock North's water supply, it seems odd (to me) that some (many?) Cantabrians are so vehemently opposed to the chlorination of Christchurch's water supply. What's the story?
Sometimes, giving pesky experts the brush-off is for the best.
Noting the common perception that regulators/regulations (in general, not only in ChCh) can be "a bit heavy handed" at times, and particularly when you're on the receiving end…
DMK to LB @3:41 pm
LB to DMK @4:27 pm
Sorry LB, I missed out a step. Do you recall examples of 'interested parties', feeling constrained by ‘heavy-handed’ regulation, lobbying successfully for light-handed regulation prior to a failure and/or other negative outcomes?
No obvious prior lobbying for less restrictive regulations in that case – 'just' multiple failures to meet the building design, permitting and construction standards/regulations of the day.
Won't someone please think of the children!
But children aren't ratepayers, and dentistry is 'free' for under 18s.
Ryall was a member of the Health select committee at the time. Same ol' National – delay repeal delay – unless it's tax cuts for the rich, and flogging off public assets.
"Nearly 7 years after the tragic consequences of Campylobacter contamination in Havelock North's water supply, it seems odd (to me) that some (many?) Cantabrians are so vehemently opposed to the chlorination of Christchurch's water supply. What's the story?"
Just FTR, chlorination has no effect on campylobacter until concentrations reach over 5ppm. ((PDF) Effect of Drinking Water Chlorination on Campylobacter spp. Colonization of Broilers (researchgate.net))
I'm not sure why Chch are so opposed, and why they have resisted Fluoridation in the past. Both seem a no brainer to me.
"In 1979, the president of the New Zealand Master Builders’ Federation condemned the “ever-increasing burden of new standards and regulations” imposed on his members."
I'm not sure I understand that one. Houses built in NZ prior to that statement were solid and sound. The CCTV building was built in 1986, long after the 1979 statement. What is your point? That harsher regulations made buildings less safe?
"This bill, the Health (Drinking Water) Amendment Bill, is a sledgehammer to crack a nut. It is a heavy-handed, overkill approach to address concerns about water quality in New Zealand. … And what about the cost?"
Without reading through the link, what was the purpose of that bill? NZ has been fluoridating water since the 1960's.
Are you sure about that? You seem to be comparing broiler chickens to municipal water networks – apples and oranges?
From what I've read, the generally accepted expert consensus is that free chlorine concentrations around 0.6 – 1 ppm at point of treatment, to maintain a chlorine concentration of least 0.1 ppm (and up to 0.5 ppm) throughout a water distribution network (water treatment station to tap), is effective for controlling Campylobacter in public water supplies.
The point is that regulatory regimes can swing from perceived heavy-handedness ("harsh" and burdensome, or appropriately cautious – depending on your PoV) to (more relaxed and/or less safe) light-handed approaches (due to lobbying by interested parties, e.g. builders, farmers, and (potentially unwarranted) optimism), and back again (due to 'disappointment'.) The leaky homes debacle, and unsafe levels of nitrate in drinking water, are examples of the disappointment phase.
Ideally, regulations should be formulated according to expert evidence-based assessments of risk and opportunity – the appropriate balance of (pre)caution and optimism. In the cases of leaky homes, and the expansion of dairy farming on the Canterbury plains, perhaps the regulators were 'encouraged' to err a little too much on the side of optimism? C'est la vie.
"Are you sure about that? "
No, it was a completely weird comparison. Covid brain, for my sins.
"The point is that regulatory regimes can swing from perceived heavy-handedness ("harsh" and burdensome, or appropriately cautious – depending on your PoV) to (more relaxed and/or less safe) light-handed approaches (due to lobbying by interested parties, e.g. builders, farmers, and (potentially unwarranted) optimism), and back again (due to 'disappointment'.) "
Yep, totally agree. So it's about finding a balance. I'm not opposed to chemical water treatment, but I am pro local solutions. I'm doing some more reading on why Chch is so opposed to chlorination. According to this article, opposition to chlorination at a council level is such that they had a "target for completely removing chlorine from Christchurch's drinking water", and have spent millions on water safety plans to achieve that.
You say quite rightly that ChCh values its water purity. I'm an old ChCh boy and remember its artesian water. Where I live now is the same.
But the goal posts have shifted. The posts are now in a park that was once a rubbish dump, next to a dairy farm and with century old sewage and waste water pipes running alongside.
It shouldn't be a political issue. Water is common to us all, but as the article cited above states- "earthquake damage, climate change, disused landfill sites – as many as 1000 – and deteriorating infrastructure", "inept", "negligent" and 'complacency"- all mean the goal posts have shifted into a different ball park.
The MoH wore some severe criticism, perhaps why the overview of water quality now sits in the vision of a different and more critical set of eyes.
Don't you think getting rid of a few more cows would help less bugs in your water?
To have it chlorinated is a safety measure, because dairy farming above the aquifer has caused this.
So health concerns are real… and politics over this is ill directed.
Our water is constantly monitored. If there is any sign of water quality deteriorating, then the specific areas of concern are chlorinated.
I challenge anyone here to produce any documented case of sickness in Christchurch due to water quality.
I don't think you realise how precious our beautiful water is to us here in Christchurch. This will be an election issue.
What's my prize?
LOL. Broken sewage pipes after a major earthquake. Who would have thought?
Is that the best you can do?
You challenged anyone to produce documented cases of sickness in Christchurch due to water quality. I provided some. That you are now changing the specifics of your challenge after the fact isn't my problem.
Fair enough. But it doesn't really prove anything. I probably should have qualified the statement a bit better.
After a major earthquake a chlorination plant could be taken out. So, under those extreme circumstances, nothing could really be guaranteed so far as water quality is concerned.
Despite the hate it gets from elitist and idpol "lefty's" Christchurch is about as safe Labour as it gets the only times it hasn't been has been the two post earthquake elections of 2011 and 2014.
It's not called the peoples socialist republic of chch for nothing
Ilam is the only safe National party electorate in the city and even that electorate isn't the safest anymore.
Chch has been down this road time and time again with chlorine and chch voters blame this stuff on council and environment Canterbury.
Chch and Dunedin are safe for labour. They'll do about what they did in 2017 in those cities.
The city labour is going to struggle in, is Auckland and it's going to be a blood bath there.
So it would be relatively painless for national to do an act-in-epsom deal for the top leader in Christchurch..?
TOP wouldn't take such a deal because they'd lose their left wing and progressive voters.
But they would gain a lot of national voters who are scared of the raving loons in act…
And any left/green people thinking of voting for top need to think on..
They could be helping vote in a right-wing govt
And a coincidence the electorate the top leader is standing in is the only national one in Christchurch…illam…?
Who has ever died from chlorine in the water?
And if your really upset about it, they have these really cool things called water filters.
So vote TMP or Greens or labour for better wages and a health system OR the mixed Tory boiler slag and get lower wages mixed with hard user pays – your choice.
when we chlorinate water unnecessarily, we open the door for the source water to be more easily polluted.
All National has to do is to promise to restore unchlorinated water to Christchurch and there will be a landslide to National.
Or they could vote for TOP, and Ilam for Raf Manji.
Nitrates with that, with or without chlorine.
Am assuming that comment is highlighting the fact that chlorine has no impact on nitrate levels….and that the current NZ nitrate level (limit?) is magnitudes above international best practice.
There's a lot wrong with Canterbury water by the looks of it (bacteria + nitrates) because of the powerful dairy industry.
As always with the profit/growth first political right, health/safety take a back seat.
There is indeed much wrong with nitrate levels…however the Christchurch water supply is as yet unimpacted …not so other catchments.
Like the Covid health response antivax shriekers, those people changing their vote would be confusing a Public Health directive with a political one.
It was initially a political directive that enabled the health directive
Chlorination and Fluoridation are not the same thing.
I skim read that but could not find any mention of fluoridation or chlorination.
But does say this:
So you can see the establishment of Taumata Arowai was in response to a Public Health imperative, is says so at the top of this quote from your link.
The health directive enabled the political directive.
It's still political.
The chlorination directive came from the Taumata Arowai, which was established by the Government.
Moreover, it was a pillar of the Government’s Three Waters Reform Programme.
It's driven by a health necessity where local councils have failed to protect the public because they are easily lobbied by, and in some cases actively collude with, cranks and farmers. Dairy interests and anti-fluoride groups have too much influence which has resulted in the delivery of poor and sometimes dangerous quality drinking water (bacteria+nitrates) and water which does uphold maximum health benefits (un-fluoridated).
This is why the Fluoridation bill and Three Waters exist, but they are political directives which didn't come out of nowhere. They are required for Public Health.
While Public Health is a necessity, the decision on how that is overseen and administered is political.
I suddenly remember why it is pointless engaging with you.
Something I am picking up with Chris Luxon's media appearances – apart from grinning, he shows no feeling or emotion or expression – robotic in other words. His visit to the tragic fire site yesterday a case in point. Jacinda and Chris Hipkins on the other hand always visibly show they are affected by a particular situation.
That is because he really doesn't care and worse (for a politician) he is a bad actor.
Diesel here in the upper south around $1.70 a litre today, with discounts. So if "transport costs "i.e price of diesel was blamed for the large component of price rises since Covid/Ukraine, when are the money grabbing bastards who used that as a reason to raise prices far in excess of the real input, going to lower their prices to reflect the lowest actual cost of transport fuels in years ? Don't hold your breath.
Wait till the govt takes the discounts off in the middle of winter on an election year. while the RB keeps going nuclear every quarter. Eeek.
Shits gonna hit the fan.
Last year, after the breakdown of a giant fire fighting ladder truck, FENZ assistant national commander and Wellington region manager Bruce Stubbs told RNZ: "There are no concerns for public safety.”
When asked by Morning Report today if having this second truck at Loafers Lodge would have helped the rescue, Stubbs said: "I don't know."
Well done Martyn, sure as hell a better response than some commentators here.
Agree, I think he is bang on the money.
Thanks for the tip.
While on the site, I watched The Working Group. The bit of gossip I picked up is that Taine Randell is going to be standing in East Coast Bays for Labour.
Well, I'm told that all the world loves an optimist.
If Erica Stanford can get 20,466 votes and a majority of 8,764 over a Labour Party candidate who got 11,702 in the 2020 election I wouldn't think he has a snowball's chance in Hell in 2023. Stanford would look like going back to a more typical majority of 15,000 or so.
Have they offered Randell a list place in the top dozen or so and is he running in the way that Finlayson used to pretend to run in Rongatai?
My political analysis ends with Randell's name recognition,
True. An ex-All Black captain is always going to have name recognition.
New Zealand must be the only country in the world where there will be obituaries in every paper in the country for someone who played, even if only in a single game and 50 years ago, for the All Blacks. To go onto the field wearing that black jersey is to become instantly immortal.
I think Taine is still a non-starter though. Now, if they could get Richie McCaw as a candidate they might have a chance.
True about that black jersey and the silver fern. (… the Addidas and Altrad logo, but that is another story.)
Without wanting to defame him, or jeopardise this site, my recollection is that McCaw would bat for the 'other side'. No evidence or anything, just a hunch.
Astonishing to hear Luxon offer "Thoughts and Prayers" to the Loafers Lodge victims. Obviously doesn't realise that those worthless sentiments (trotted out by right-wing US politicians after every mass shooting) are social media code for "I couldn't give a damn". Or maybe he does realise.
I doubt he does give a damn in this case – his concern is for the landlord class and not the likes of Loafers Lodge residents.
But only, of course, after he has repealed two others!
As a orthodox Christian, I'd like to know what Prayers. And If he thinks we should shut the country down on Sunday to Morn the loss?
So much Death in Northland at the moment, we need a break.
Sorry about the links above being from the Troy press – the ODDITY and the Granny.
Chlöe Swarbrick's pre-budget piece highlights the bold moves that are needed and the decisions that keep us in the 'middle-of-the-road':
The problem is (always) how those who finance our persistent deficit view such….and you never find out until its too late.
The greater our reliance on offshore supply of necessities the greater our need to consider such…and we are almost totally dependent on offshore supply.
Wouldn't water filtering kits remove most of the chlorine?