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Open mike 17/10/2021

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, October 17th, 2021 - 99 comments
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99 comments on “Open mike 17/10/2021 ”

  1. Dennis Frank 1

    Wizard put out to pasture: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/oct/15/new-zealand-council-ends-contract-with-wizard-after-two-decades-of-service

    You may have forgotten that Labour officially endorsed wizardry, so here's a reminder of that history:

    The Wizard, who was born in England, began performing acts of wizardry and entertainment in public spaces shortly after arriving in New Zealand in 1976. When the council originally tried to stop him, the public protested. In 1982, the New Zealand Art Gallery Directors Association said he had become a living work of art, and then, in 1990, the prime minister at the time, Mike Moore, asked that he consider becoming the Wizard of New Zealand. “I am concerned that your wizardry is not at the disposal of the entire nation,” Moore wrote on his official letterhead.

    “I suggest therefore that you should urgently consider my suggestion that you become the Wizard of New Zealand, Antarctica and relevant offshore areas … no doubt there will be implications in the area of spells, blessings, curses, and other supernatural matters that are beyond the competence of mere Prime Ministers.”

    Not just implications. Imprecations. Incantations. Chants, even. Sadly, the Labour Party failed to follow through on the initiative, and under Helen Clark reverted to merely copying the National Party.

    Jacinda has displayed a noteworthy talent for enchanting people, but few observers would use magical thinking to account for that. There's a lack of evident espousal of witchery in her messaging. Unlike several of my old female friends – one of whom has the number plate BRMSTCK on her EV.

    Cultural commentators tend to forget that an entire generation of teenage rebels in the 1960s went on to explore the possibilities of magical thinking, and the culture of Western civilisation got transformed as a result. Political scientists are too stupid to learn from the political consequences – that goes without saying – so they remain a fertile area of investigation for thesis writers of the future.

    The Wizard, whose real name is Ian Brackenbury Channell, 88, had been contracted to Christchurch city council for the past two decades to promote the city through “acts of wizardry and other wizard-like services”, at a cost of $16,000 a year. He has been paid a total of $368,000.

    Chch was a hotbed of leftism through the 1970s. Notable survivor from that era is Murray Horton, still operating his Campaign Against Foreign Control of Aoteroa (CAFCA). As Ad pointed out yesterday, the foreign control over Aotearoa is primarily exercised by a couple of Aussie banks – but that's the economy. Sovereign control of Aotearoa still resides in the British Crown. A triumvirate of foreign control can be discerned if you factor in Facebook, Five-Eyes, and the century in which the CFR has directed the USA foreign policy regardless of the coming & going of US presidents…

      • Dennis Frank 1.1.1

        It was 1969, and he was starting a new position in the Department of Social Science and Sociology at the University of New South Wales, where he specialised in religion and revitalisation movements.

        During this period, he was looking into new ways to challenge social and political ideology. But he wanted to activate this by steering clear of violence, and instead, confronting people with what he refers to as ‘unusually creative responses.’

        It was the zeitgeist. Yippies using street theatre to warp mass consciousness alt-left. Establishment left had spines permanently horizontal in obeisance to their overlords. The real pioneers of the technique were Kesey & the Pranksters, after he liberated LSD from the chem lab around '62 & they got into freaking straights with day-glo.

        Exposé on that origin of hippie came via The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test. I read my brand-new paperback copy early 1970 and it was a revelation. Shadbolt was using the technique in Albert Park that year when we first saw him. Jumping Sundays, the media called it.

        • swordfish


          Oh christ on a bike !, save us from self-indulgent middle-class hippies, affluent New Age fantasists with vastly more money than sense … & worst of all … far, far worse than anything else … spoilt narcissists of dubious talent terrorising the general public with ostentatious displays of street theatre … everyone fiercely competing against each other to be the centre of attention as a desperate substitute for the cloying indulgence of their comfortably-off parents after leaving home … [a bit like Woke Twitter when you think about it].

          Could there be anything worse than the smug self-indulgence of the children of the Establishment ?

          “If I was invisible for the day I think I’d kick a mime artist to death. At least he'd go with people thinking he's great at his job":

          Comedian Frankie Boyle

          • Dennis Frank

            Yeah yeah laugh but there's always been a world of difference between the trend-setters & the trend-followers. You're right about the narcissism bit. The yanks did rather go to an extreme with that. Jung would explain it as compensatory reaction to a childhood of extreme repression.

            Dunno if it's that simple tho. I had that. I didn't lose the plot like the narcissists. Gotta remember that growing up in a world where the political left and right are threatening you with competing forms of totalitarian govt, not to mention nuclear war, did make a rebel wave that was rather fervent…

    • Treetop 1.2

      I would like to know if the wizard is pro or anti vaccination?

      I have a wonderful photo of the wizard taken in 1991 on a ladder in the square in Christchurch when I did my decade trip there.

  2. Dennis Frank 3

    Legal ructions in Aotearoa: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/oct/17/explosion-of-ideas-how-maori-concepts-are-being-incorporated-into-new-zealand-law

    “What we’re seeing now is a Cambrian explosion of activity where the superior courts are in several contexts affirming tikanga Māori,” says high court judge Christian Whata. It’s a shift which could profoundly alter the way New Zealand law is applied in areas as diverse as defamation and trust law. Ultimately, it represents the indigenisation of a legal system which has been dominated by English thinking since its inception.

    The Cambrian explosion is a geological metaphor. So the old thing about restless natives is ramping up to a higher level.

    One of the few Māori serving in New Zealand’s higher courts, he has recently been appointed to the Law Commission (a government thinktank charged with guiding legal reform) to define and chart the future relationship between tikanga and state law.

    A welcome move. Seems to indicate a shift in the hierarchy from pretending to be progressive into actually making progress.

    “What is tikanga? I’m not an expert on that. It’s a massive topic in itself. How can tikanga be used in a state law context? That’s its own topic. Should [we even] use tikanga in a state law context?” Despite the immensity of these questions and the courts’ usual preference for more incremental change, to some extent they have little choice but to keep up.

    Worthy questions, those. Worth an essay onsite here! My intuitive response to the one about the state is yes, but I'll defer to those with more grasp of tikanga first.

    • Gezza 3.1

      I've got family guests, so I can't devote any time to this at the moment, but yes, I think the time is ripe for NZ to develop some of its own legal code & jurisprudence around, & incorporating concepts like tikanga Māori.

      I believe the Peter Ellis appeal is a bold step in the right direction & suspect that will be around Ellis's mana, which survives him, & also affects his family's mana. The English law idea that when you die you no longer have a reputation to be restored (for example) so you have no need of redress, in my view is wrong. Your mana remains & should be legally capable of being restored.

  3. Dennis Frank 4

    Peter Martin, a political reporter for Bloomberg News, reports on Xi's exemplary demonstrations of how to lose friends and depress people (contrary to Dale Carnegie's `how to win friends & impress people' advice).

    A global poll released in June 2021 showed that negative perceptions of China were near historic highs in nearly every one of the 17 advanced economies surveyed. These setbacks matter. As global politics is increasingly defined by Sino-American rivalry, the ability to compete diplomatically will help shape the history of the twenty-first century.

    Taken together with economic, military, technological, and ideological prowess, diplomacy is a key part of what makes any power great. American strategists have long defined it as a core element of any nation’s power: diplomatic, informational, military, and economic capabilities are often reduced to the acronym “DIME.”

    As in `ain't worth a dime'. Geopolitics from an establishment perspective. The future, as defined by the past. Automata rule, ok? Am I being too hard on the control system? Probably. Establishment folk do sometimes improvise.

    The foreign media began to brand this new confrontational approach “wolf warrior diplomacy” after a series of Chinese action movies that depicted Rambo-like heroes battling China’s enemies at home and abroad.

    Yeah, I get it. Copy the Reagan model. Must've made quite an impression on Xi at the time. Martin explores the historical development of the regime's diplomacy.

    Diplomats were instructed to ask permission before they acted, even on the most trivial matters, and to always report what they said, did, and heard to their superiors. They were banned from dating or marrying foreigners. They were told to stick rigidly to pre-approved talking points, even when they knew these often failed to resonate with foreign audiences.

    Born of necessity more than seventy years ago, these rules and practices are still in place today. Zhou’s approach has survived and evolved through revolution, famine, capitalist reforms, and the rise of China as a global power. “We’re very different to other ministries,” one diplomat said. “We’re unusual in that we’ve had a strong culture that’s lasted since 1949.”

    Dunno if this `diplomats as automata' praxis has accomplished a hell of a lot for China really. Seven decades of the Chou model correlates with rise of China, sure, but correlation ain't causation. Globalising is coming together. Using a separatist policy in that context is likely to ensure minimal gains.

  4. chris T 5

    Far out. James Shaw is a bit awkward on Q and A this morning.

    At least he fronted I guess. Which is more than other politicians do.

    • mac1 5.1

      "Which is more than other politicians do."

      Seen on Q & A recently. MPs Verrall, Chhour, Jackson, Packer, Bridges, Bishop, Shaw, Luxon, Seymour, Robertson, Hipkins, Collins, Mahuta.

      Just a brief survey of this blog and the Q&A site brought up these names.

      One very incorrect 'reckon'. This kind of comment epitomises the danger of social media.

      • dv 5.1.1

        Thanks for the check. Mac

      • Cricklewood 5.1.2

        Kris Faafoi seems to be doing a pretty good job hiding from media currently…

        • Patricia Bremner

          Kris Faafoi has a thankless task. Organise billets for those returning plus sports people business people arts people emergency quota of returns, essential workers with everyone wanting his attention "NOW". With the outbreak of Delta MIQ spots are under pressure. He has tried to be fair to those stranded those with visa requests in the pipeline, while he has done sterling work in the commercial sphere, and has stood the buffeting from all sides for months on end.

      • chris T 5.1.3

        /mind saying that in Wnglish?

        I was just talking about Shaw on Q and A this morning

        • Drowsy M. Kram

          mac1's reply @5.1 relates to the last sentence in your brief comment. 5.1 begins by quoting that sentence, making it difficult to fathom the depths of your confusion.

          • chris T

            Are you trying to pretend politicians don't hide.

            Ardern from Hosking. Collins a couple of weeks ago from everybody. Faafoi has gone AWOL

            TBF. having meet him a few times before he became a politician and thinking he was a twat, Hipkins always fronts

            • Drowsy M. Kram

              Are you trying to pretend politicians don't hide.

              No. What an odd question.

              Still can't fathom your "/mind saying that in Wnglish?" comment @5.1.3.

              • chris T

                I just had no idea what this meant

                And apologies for the spelling mistake. I am thinking you knew what I meant even though it is there


                Just a brief survey of this blog and the Q&A site brought up these names.

                One very incorrect 'reckon'. This kind of comment epitomises the danger of social media."

                Edit: I mean wtf has social media got to do with it?

                • Drowsy M. Kram

                  I just had no idea what this meant

                  You really had no idea what a list of 13 politicians who recently appeared on Q & A meant, in the context of your comment @5? Extraordinary!

                  • chris T

                    Well obviously, but it isn't the ones hiding as pressure is on them, Like Collin's a few weeks ago, Fa'afoi and Ardern with Hosking

                    Edit: Throwing some associate minister at question time and you giving a list of mps who have fronted on their behalf doesn’t change the fact the others didn’t There is 120 of them ffs

                    • mac1

                      You wrote "TBF. having meet him a few times before he became a politician and thinking he was a twat, Hipkins always fronts."

                      TBF means 'to be fair'. Well, Chris T, in your comment at #5, you were not fair. You made a very wild claim, with no substantiation, which is what I called you on, with 13 recent examples as evidence.

                      Now, what was that about being a 'twat'?

                • dv

                  Chris have you heard of The Standard, a popular social media site?

            • fender

              "Ardern" from Hosking"

              I'd call it a boycott rather than hiding. And who could disagree with withdrawing from that toxic sicko. When a so-called professional treats the PM in such a rude and disrespectful manner consistently he really should be sent home and told not to return. Calling any woman guest a lying hussy should result in a final warning at the very least.

              If I saw that prick down here in Kapiti I'd break his nose.

              • Jester

                Ardern was unable to answer Hoskings basic questions and came across terribly. Hipkins, Robertson and Little still go on his show.

                • fender

                  Is that supposed to be an excuse for his misogynistic abusive bullying?

                  Does Kate let him treat her that way?

            • chris T

              In what way was it "unfair"?

              • mac1

                Saying people don't do things when they do do things is unfair. It's also untrue. Facts makes for truth and trust.

                So the 2021 Nobel Peace prize winner, Maria Ressa, tells us. "A world without facts means a world without truth and trust."

      • chris T 5.1.4

        I think we might have to agree to disagree, as obviously you are not getting my point and I am not getting yours.

        Probably mt fault tbh.

        • Pete

          If an MP, (or anyone for that matter) does not accept an invitation to appear on some media entertainment show, does that mean they are 'hiding?'

          • In Vino

            Good point. Absolutely not. No politician should feel in any way obligated to appear on any programme generated by commercialism (ie, a right-wing outlet) where they are likely to be grilled by some right-wing nut job.

            To create a level playing-field, we need impartial media with intelligent, disinterested interviewers. Kim Hill on RNZ is about the last example that I have heard make a reasonable effort at being so.

            Talkback radio is commercialised cacklemush, and the right wing of society would like to eliminate state radio (or any kind of radio independent to their commercially-driven system) and hold a right-wing monopoly over the media, pretending it is independent because there is an artificial competitive market.


        • Molly

          If it's of any help Chris T, I took your original comment to mean that you thought Shaw's performance was so lacklustre he might as well have not been there, but kudos to him for trying.

          Could be wrong, but don't understand why you are being harried on this particular comment. Seems of little consequence.

  5. Patricia Bremner 6

    Covid is getting close and very real. Thank you for yesterdays confirmation of our commitment to community, Jacinda Ardern and all the many people involved. I await the final totals with a sense of hope.

    However, we have just had an unsettling email from our Doctor's surgery team. They have reorganised into Red and Green zones, to help when covid arrives. (definitely when not if) A portable cabin for the red zone , the surgery the green zone. Full PPE for all staff, patients to remain in cars 'till they are checked.

    We are glad they are as prepared as possible, but the tone of gravity with the mention of no relief staff if they get sick, their efforts not to take the virus home, and their fully vaccinated status, all felt too "close to home".

    We have known this excellent team for forty years, and know this is preparing to meet the enemy head on. I am thankful for these brave people who will strive to keep us safe, and I realised how lucky we are to have a wee safe bolt hole. They stressed vaccination was key in keeping this manageable. Again thanks to everyone who turned up to be vaccinated, you helped your local medical team.

    Anyone who is dithering, don't wait, do it asp, 1st now 2nd in 3 weeks plus 2 weeks to build immunity and by 29th of November you will have "done your bit" for your health your Doctors and Nurses and others in the community.
    Thank You in advance. “Let’s Do This”

    • Ad 6.1

      The double-vaccinated have much less to fear now. That's almost all older people already.

      Peak fear is passing, replaced with peak re-organisation.

      This is a good phase.

      • Patricia Bremner 6.1.1


      • weka 6.1.2

        What's the current estimate of deaths if 90% are fully vaxxed?

        What's the estimate for long covid?

        "less to fear" is accurate and fudges reality at the same time.

        • Jester

          Shaun Hendy said 7,000 deaths a year if 80% of over 5 year old's vaccinated. We are only vaccinating over 12's but are probably over 80% by now. So hopefully less than 7,000.

  6. Bruce 7

    From RNZ on Tiwai Pt

    "The latest tests released by the company have found 83 percent of groundwater samples exceed drinking water standards as well as regional council guidelines for aluminium and toxic fluoride.

    New Zealand Aluminium Smelters says no one uses the groundwater for drinking."

    But I think a few people eat Bluff oysters

  7. joe90 8

    Little wonder you weren't involved in the catering at all, sport.


    But it turned sour when almost half of the 112 diners fell ill after eating the turkey.

    A long-time restaurateur's legal battle to overturn a conviction brought by the NZ Food Safety Authority (NZFSA) looks to have ended after more than three years before four courts.

    But Robin Pierson, owner of Gisborne's Bushmere Arms, says he has not decided what he will do now to protect the reputation of his restaurant and bar. He maintains a norovirus is responsible for the outbreak which affected 50 to 53 diners, whose symptoms included vomiting, diarrhoea and stomach cramps.


    • Treetop 8.1

      Covid can be a wedding spoiler even if everything was meticulously planned for the day.

      I would like to know what the situation would be due to a level lockdown regarding all costs?

    • dv 8.2

      Brian Gould give more bGround.


      We are told that Jacinda and Clarke, while visiting a hotel out of Auckland, had identified it as a possible venue for their wedding reception – but the negotiations had broken down when the couple had stipulated that their friend, the celebrated chef Peter Gordon, should be responsible for the catering. The proprietor was unwilling to accede to this request and the negotiations had therefore broken down.

      We are further told that the disappointed proprietor had produced, as a term in the “contract” that had yet to be agreed, a cancellation clause that required the couple to pay a cancellation fee of $5000.

      One does not need to be a lawyer to recognise that such a claim would be unlikely to succeed, but this does not deter the Herald from giving prominence to the story. Leopards, after all, do not change their spots.

  8. joe90 9

    Word of the day – agrivoltaics.

    In Jack's Solar Garden in Boulder County, Colorado, owner Byron Kominek has covered 4 of his 24 acres with solar panels. The farm is growing a huge array of crops underneath them—carrots, kale, tomatoes, garlic, beets, radishes, lettuce, and more. It’s also been generating enough electricity to power 300 homes. “We decided to go about this in terms of needing to figure out how to make more money for land that we thought should be doing more,” Kominek says.

    Rooftops are so 2020. If humanity’s going to stave off the worst of climate change, people will need to get creative about where they put solar panels. Now scientists are thinking about how to cover canals with them, reducing evaporation while generating power. Airports are filling up their open space with sun-eaters. And space doesn’t get much more open than on a farm: Why not stick a solar array in a field and plant crops underneath? It’s a new scientific (and literal) field known as agrivoltaics—agriculture plus photovoltaics—and it’s not as counterintuitive as it might seem.


  9. Andre 10

    Yet another reason to never go to Australia. Vegemite pizza. Truly a crime against humanity.


    And you all thought this was satire, didncha?

    • Puckish Rogue 10.1

      Just stick with whatever combination of sausage, ham, pepperoni, cheese and onion and be done with it

      Adding more stuff to pizza just works it worse

      Thats also a scientific fact.

      • Andre 10.1.1

        Anchovies and kalamata olives, when I'm making it myself.

        Although, since I needed to use an oven to test some materials at high temperatures for a project at work, the last one I made tasted like hot epoxy and vinyl ester. I don't recommend that.

          • Andre

            Oh I dunno.

            The cheese-eating surrender monkeys have a habit of taking individual things that are quite interesting on their own, and blending them into some sort of weird unidentifiable goo that's even more wrong than vegemite. That looks like another one of those.

            • joe90

              The surrender monkeys ain't the only ones to do stomach-churning things with unmentionables.

              I joyfully and easily eat all manner of shellfish from gulper clams to mussels much to the astonishment of my children. I cannot, however, bring myself to eat woodcock with the trail left in place to cook and the juices to run free.

              I found a recipe on the internet for ‘flambe woodcock’ where after cooking them whole with the guts intact the entrails were scooped out and mixed with bacon, olive oil, mustard, port, and lemon juice to make a puree.

              The puree and woodcock are then warmed in a frying pan for a few minutes before tipping cognac over and setting alight. Simple as that and it is apparently delicious. Other cooks roast the bird intact then scoop out the ‘trail’ into a hot pan, add some red wine and seasoning and spread on bread or toast when heated.


            • Sabine

              Oh no sir, you are greatly mistaken.

              this is nicois as it gets and it is delish, and easy to make.

    • Forget now 10.2

      Pizza is basically cheese on toast. Putting marmite on that is not that uncommon – down in the southwest anyway. That exta vegemitey one from Adelaide does look pretty vile though. The entire point of a (small) smear of marmite on top of cheese on toasted bread (crumpets by my preference) is the slighty caramelised brittleness it gets during the grilling, putting a lake of it under the cheese just seems weird to me!

      It's all rather moot though, as that NZH article concludes:

      The vegemite pizza is not available in New Zealand.

    • Molly 10.3

      Worked in a 'prestige' restaurant on Hamilton Island in the 80's.

      Diluted Grenadine to accompany the monkfish, and chicken served with watered down Vegemite.

    • weka 10.4

      I don’t know, vegemite, cheese, white carbs, sounds classic. Just needs some pineapple.

    • Patricia Bremner 11.1

      The Givalittle page to help Tairawhiti get a mobile clinic for vaccines and medical needs for their remote area has reached $90 000 from public donations. Wonderful news. Good among the thoughtless Jester.

  10. Herodotus 12

    Up in Auckland were we not fortunately that the weather arrived today? Everything appeared to align for a successful day. My thanks to all those unseen volunteers and community leaders who heavily contributed to the last few weeks success.👏🏿

  11. chris T 13

    "But, a few men do cause immense harm to both women and men. And many other men, consider that sex-based harm to be women's problems and do not bother to keep track or speak out against those members of their sex."

    BTW There have been quite a few women that have caused harm. Especially to their kids, so you might want to take a step off your pedestal for a sec.

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

    • weka 13.1

      If you want to argue that men as a class aren't responsible for most of the violence against humans, then you can do it in OM rather than derail my post (the derail is in accusing a feminist of putting herself or women on a pedestal when she was talking about men). However if you do run that argument I will expect you to provide evidence as you go.

      Otoh, you could just stop taking it personally when women point out the problems they have with men as a class and subgroups of those men, and instead make the time to learn what we are talking about.

      • chris T 13.1.1

        "If you want to argue that men as a class aren't responsible for most of the violence against humans"

        I haven't and they obviously have been, but this doesn't make us all bad as a group.

        How are Mary 1, Myra Hindley Rosemary West going?

        You see when we speakof evil women we say their names and don't paint the who sex with it.

        Nwlson Mandela's missus was into necklessing people. I don't blame her for it because she was a chick

        • weka

          what's your point? That male violence isn't done by men, they just happen to be male people?

          • Molly

            weka, just noticed this had been moved to OM. Was trying to think of a good response, but saw yours. Much more succinct, but exactly what I wanted to ask.

            @chris T – What she said above.

  12. joe90 14

    Thread on the likely Covid end-game in the US – a death rate of 40/100K a year, twice the current flu rates, and costly burdens on resources and systems but probably deemed tolerable enough to avoid radical public health measures.


    • Molly 14.1

      Good data in an article in the Scottish Herald.

      Scotland has 3.8 million people double vaccinated with Pfizer.

      It also stresses that the 616 who have died from the disease after being fully vaccinated represent just 0.016% of the 3.8 million people to date given both doses.

      The report states: "These individuals had several co-morbidities which contributed to their deaths.

      "Of the [616] confirmed Covid-19 related deaths, in individuals that have received two doses of Covid-19 vaccine, 80.4% were in the 70 and over age group."

      Further on, it states that the death rate drops drastically if a booster shot is given.

      Prof Ferguson said: “I’d like to see us be a little more aggressive in rolling out booster doses, because the sooner we can, the sooner we’ll reap the benefits of that and I think the data supports that not just after six months, probably after four months after second doses, you still get a very big effect of booster doses.”

      Data this week from Israel has found that the rate of hospitalisation for Covid was just 2.6 per 100,000 among over-60s who had had a third booster shot, compared to 28.5 per 100,000 for individuals the same age group who have had just two Pfizer doses.

      The double vaccination target is just the beginning – not the end goal.

  13. chris T 15

    Weka. I realise this now. Which is why I apologised.

    Molly. I wish people could work out it wasn't the fact they were dudes.

    There have in hisotry been plenty of evil powerful women.

    Jence my Mary 1 post.

    The point is it is power and privilege, not sex. Some few dudes were the ones that got it. Totally agree.

    But all the other dudes in past history prior to about 1800 starving their arses off and just trying to fee their kids, with their wives

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

    • Molly 15.1

      Hold on to your hat, Chris. The ride might get wild from here on out.

      Class distinctions also matter. Within the power structure, without consideration for sex, there are mechanisms that serve to keep the elite classes immune from the privations of the lower classes.

      That deserves attention as well, and should be recognised. I would wholeheartedly support any who chose to address this inequity, and only if they had not considered the distinct experiences of racial minorities or women would I bring those extra considerations up. Because to solve issues like this with effectiveness, you have to make sure to identify the problem as fully as you can.

      As regards power and privilege in our current society – if you believe there currently exists equity between men and women, then I would disagree.

      • chris T 15.1.1

        "If you believe there currently exists equity between men and women, then I would disagree."

        In what respect fo you mean equity?

        Money? Status?

        The PM, Leader of the opposition and Governer General are all woman.

        Probably the 3 most up there jobs in the country.

        There is a chick "The queenster! running the commonwealth)

        Did you need a female ABs coach?

        • Molly

          The point is it is power and privilege as a whole, not the noticeable few. Some few 'chicks' are in positions of power. Totally agree.

          But all the other 'chicks' in our present society are still dealing with sexism in society, work and relationships, while just trying to feed their kids, with or without partners.

          (BTW, can we start referring to the categories as women and men now? I feel like I've wandered on to an 80's movie set.)

          • chris T

            Id prefer females and males, as man and women tends to have turned into some weird made up inner touchy feely gender thing if ok, but all good. Will do.

            I don't think you got my point I agree with you.

            But just the other way round

            Most blokes males aren't walking around actively oppressing females.

            Apart from "noticeable few" males the rest of us are just trying to look after our kids and work our arse off, like our partners.

            Just an aside but it reminds me of the whole pay equity thing.

            Jobs predominently female? Not enough women studying STEM, they must be oppressed! WTF?

            There is nothing stopping females doing STEM. They just may not be into it as much as males. Why are no females asking why there is not enough men doing child teaching?

            But I totally agree their have been far to many "noticeable few" that were male and not enough "noticeable few" that have been female.

            But this is just a culture change that is happening. Probably too slowly and in some particuar religiously nutty countries not happening

            • weka

              Barriers to women in STEM


              Also, gamergate,

              Gamergate was an online harassment campaign, initially conducted through the use of the hashtag #GamerGate, that centered around sexism and anti-progressivism in video game culture. Beginning August 2014, it targeted women in the video game industry—notably game developers Zoë Quinn and Brianna Wu, and feminist media critic Anita Sarkeesian. The harassment campaign included doxing, threats of rape, and death threats.


              There is nothing stopping females doing STEM

              • chris T

                Gamergate was getting close to a decade ago and again was a small bunch of arssehole males.

                But way to paint everyone in tetiary education with the same brush as a few arseholes hiding behind computer keyboards

                • Molly

                  "But way to paint everyone in tetiary education with the same brush as a few arseholes hiding behind computer keyboards"

                  But that is not what was said.

                  Gamergate was getting close to a decade ago and again was a small bunch of arssehole males.

                  Interestingly, just had a conversation on this topic last week with my twenty-year old son. Learnt a lot, and went away looking for updates. Found this.

                  A suggestion: I think it might help if you stopped assuming that every time someone uses the word 'men' they are referring to you as an individual. If someone references women being involved in atrocities, I don't go into defensive mode just because I am a woman, I seek to know more.

                  There are social cues, implicit boundaries and many varied and legal ways of making people feel uncomfortable. Women often experience the same discomfort in certain industries because the culture has been formed on the sensibilities and priorities of men.

                  • chris T

                    "There are social cues, implicit boundaries and many varied and legal ways of making people feel uncomfortable. Women often experience the same discomfort in certain industries because the culture has been formed on the sensibilities and priorities of men."

                    I'm sorry, but this is just not my experience in places I have worked in the last 15 or so years. TBF most of them were run by females.

                    Do you honestly think a male primary school teacher is not in the same predicament?

                    It is normally the vibe you are creating within yourself, more than automatically assuming everyone of the opposite bio sex is against you.

                    Though I think my male primary school teacher has it harder than the vast majority of (persecuted females"

                    Edit actually ignore the teacher bit. Re-read your post. Sorry. Cocked that one up agree

                    • Molly

                      See my comment below.

                      Just read this comment which raises a whole lot of responses, that will make it difficult to rest easy. Can we take a raincheck and come back to this some other time?

                  • chris T

                    Hey. Edited my post earlier sorry.

                    Cocked that one up a tad.


                  • chris T

                    Have a good night mate 🙂

                • weka

                  you don't really have any argument do you, just a bunch of reckons.

                  • chris T

                    No offence, but you ain't exactly filling my day with any coherent, relevant ones.

                    I am completely open to any you may have if there is actual evidence behind it.

                    • weka

                      I wrote a whole post Chris. If you didn't understand it, you can just ask.

                      I'm not going to provide evidence for things that you can very easily look up yourself. Start with the stats on which sex commits most violence, then look at which sex commits most violence against women, then look at which sex commits most violence against trans women.

                  • chris T

                    Gamergate again?

                    That is turning into a winge more than an argument?

                    Or aplogies if I missed a relevant one.

                    • weka

                      no idea what you are on about, and you're starting to look like a troll.

                      It would help if you either used the reply conventions on TS, or cut and paste what you are referring to.

                  • chris T

                    I apologise.

                    I obviously got the wrong end of the stick , and this is my fault.

                    • weka

                      when there is no reply button, scroll upwards from the comment you want to reply to until you find the first comment with a reply button that is inline with the comment you are replying to. That way your comments will go in the right place and it will make more sense.

                      I'm less interested in you saying it was your fault than I am in you just getting the basics right. Use the reply conventions, and/or quote what you are replying to so people reading can understand.

                      And if you are going to accuse me of whinging, then be specific about what you mean so I can address it.

            • Molly

              "Jobs predominently female? Not enough women studying STEM, they must be oppressed! WTF?

              There is nothing stopping females doing STEM. They just may not be into it as much as males. Why are no females asking why there is not enough men doing child teaching?"

              These are relevant questions, for which there are no easy answers.

              You may well think that women are not into STEM, but those that are do find that their qualifications often are not enough to get them jobs or pay parity. My partner did a post-graduate university course a few years ago with a female engineer. She was the only one in the course to achieve 100% scores on papers, but in her work environment she was often ignored and did not have pay parity with others with the same qualifications and experience.

              Go look at the experience of women in NZ within the Fire Department, and try to determine what kind of culture allowed those actions to not only occur, but for the perpetrators to be promoted. Apparently, firefighters are the top profession of trust for most people, and yet women were still not safe in that space – solely because of their biological sex.

              There are men involved in child teaching, a quick Google search comes up with a 2018 article:

              As early as 1971, women already made up 62 per cent of NZ primary teachers, although they were then only 41 per cent of secondary teachers.

              By 2004, those numbers were 82 per cent in primary schools and 57 per cent in secondary schools.

              The proportions have actually been relatively stable since then, with women rising to 84 per cent at primary and 60 per cent at secondary level.

              Despite this long history, most primary and intermediate school principals were men until 2012, and most secondary principals are still men. Last year 55 per cent of primary, and only 33 per cent of secondary, principals were women.

              (Note: Although men teaching children was a low percentage, the percentage of men as principals – the authority over the teachers was higher than proportional. The power positions were allocated to men.)

              There is a distinct difference in talking about individual lived experiences as a particular sex, and a collective experience of a sex.

              The first relates to the very distinct and unique experience of a particular person. They may or may not experience the general common experiences of their sex, and that is just life.

              However, there are wider experiences of being a woman – or a man – and it is the attributes of those regular commonalities that are being referenced when we talk about biological sex differences in society.

              • chris T

                "but those that are do find that their qualifications often are not enough to get them jobs or pay parity."

                This is a fair point worth actual investigation, and I also suspect if true it might be a who you know thing as well. But again. It will be a small bunch of arsehole males, not a whole sex working in the industry.

                • Molly

                  "It will be a small bunch of arsehole males, not a whole sex working in the industry."

                  Once again, not all individual males experience the privilege of men as a biological class. However, the power structures within our society are formed and maintained most particularly by men.

                  I’m going to think about what you are writing, and think about how I am explaining myself and try and figure out why we seem to be misunderstanding each other. I might not reply again because it’s an early night for me, but didn’t want you to think I’m abandoning this discussion for good.

              • RedLogix

                She was the only one in the course to achieve 100% scores on papers, but in her work environment she was often ignored and did not have pay parity with others with the same qualifications and experience.

                This is pretty much the common experience of all juniors – having a cervix is certainly not the whole explanation in play here.

                As a working engineer let me do a rough description of my current work team – totaling about 40 people across controls, process and operations:

                • Fully 45% of the entire group are women
                • The lead process engineer is a woman.
                • The cultural and ethnic diversity is pretty typical of Australia as a whole, with a tilt toward Asian's.
                • Our Chair of the Board is an Asian – and a woman.
                • Our CEO is of Nigerian heritage

                Chris T has a point – that workplaces of the last 15 years or so have changed a fair bit. As a contractor I get to move around quite a lot so my experience is reasonably representative I'd suggest.

                • Molly

                  That's good. If my son training to be an engineer completes his degree, I'll send him your way. (BTW, he's in the process of selecting his branch of engineering. Would you mind sharing what branch you are in, and what are the recommendations and pitfalls that you consider related to that branch?)

                  His older brother was put off engineering when he volunteered for a year at a local vintage railway workshop. Unknown to me, the workshop was covered in pictures of naked ladies, and tea break talk was often sexual. He was young, and only told me how uncomfortable he felt after he had left.

                  Goes without saying why his younger sister didn't follow his volunteer path.

  14. joe90 16

    Queenie got her boy off the hook.

  15. Ed 17

    We ignore these developments in Singapore at our peril.

    There the business classes and the expatriates pushed to open the country.

    And everyone is paying for it.

    Note that 80 per cent of the population are fully vaccinated – and they are now re-imposing restrictions.

    I may post on this in more detail tomorrow if time permits.


  16. RedLogix 18

    @ Molly

    I started in Electrical but if I had my time again I'd probably do Process Engineering. After a wobbly start in my 20s I found myself doing Industrial Automation and have never looked back. Decades later and I still look forward to each day. Or night as it happens right now.

    There is a huge diversity of roles in Engineering and not all of them are strictly professional as such. The key thing is to have an abiding interest in the nature of the work. That alone will carry anyone a long way.

    Honestly I haven't seen a porno parlour like your son encountered since the 80s. If they still exist it would be mostly in marginal non-professional settings like the one described.

    As for sexual talk, the most wonderfully vivid banter along these lines belonged to a female Control operator I worked with in Canada. Takes all sorts. blush

    • Molly 18.1

      Thanks RedLogix. You seem to be aware how unusual and fortunate you are to have a job you enjoy, I appreciate you taking the time to share.

      I hope you're right about the changing culture, there do seem to be changes in some of the bigger companies especially.

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