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Open mike 18/09/2012

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, September 18th, 2012 - 137 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

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137 comments on “Open mike 18/09/2012 ”

  1. Pascal's bookie 1

    Here’s something for Labour to bang on about till the next election, commission a local version, and keep on banging on about it till everyone groks it:

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/09/17/tax-cuts-for-the-rich_n_1889686.html

    • Draco T Bastard 1.1

      Ah, reality comes in to bite the neo-liberal economists again but I’m sure that they’ll just continue to ignore it. After all, if they went around acknowledging that their theory didn’t work then they wouldn’t be able to continue to justify capitalism.

      • Neo-Liberalism is only one facet of capitalism.

        • millsy 1.1.1.1

          Quite.

          After the great depression both sides of the political fence agreed to putting the capitalist system in chains so as to serve mankind. About 30 years ago, the chains were unlocked by those who had forgotten what damage it will wreak to society.

          • TheContrarian 1.1.1.1.1

            Indeed.

            Unbridled anarcho-capitalism is a distinct type of capitalism.

            • Pascal's bookie 1.1.1.1.1.1

              Yeah. It sits within the set of capitalisms marked: “Do not actually exist” on the ven diagram of ‘What is capitalism’

            • SpaceMonkey 1.1.1.1.1.2

              Yeah… it doesn’t exist… anarcho-capitalism is an oxymoron.

              • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anarcho-capitalism

                indeed it does exist (though I can’t think of any real world examples – which is a good thing)

                Though neo-liberalism, taken to tit’s logical conclusion, would lead to a system not to dissimilar to Anarcho-capitalism. Prebble once mused that police could be privtised which would fit into a Anarcho-capitalism model

                • lprent

                  though I can’t think of any real world examples – which is a good thing

                  I always thought Somalia was the nearest thing to its inevitable result…

                  Like classical liberalism, and unlike anarcho-pacifism, anarcho-capitalism permits the use of force, as long as it is in the defense of persons or property. The permissible extent of this defensive use of force is an arguable point among anarcho-capitalists. Retributive justice, meaning retaliatory force, is often a component of the contracts imagined for an anarcho-capitalist society. Some believe prisons or indentured servitude would be justifiable institutions to deal with those who violate anarcho-capitalist property relations, while others believe exile or forced restitution are sufficient.[47]

                  The problem is that given those set of characteristics and that there is no institution to constrain violence, then I’d expect it to rapidly do a Somalia…. Warlords and personal fiefdoms.

                  It has been raised here many times as a question for libertarians of various shades. For some reason they seem to avoid answering this as an objection. The nearest that anyone gets to it is postulate something that looks astonishing like “because I said so….”

                  • the rule of law could arbitrarily set in an anarcho-capitalist society based purely on the whims of which ever agency or individual owns the contract for the police force. But then again, another person has no constraint on owning and creating their own security force so, you are quite right, the end result would be rulers of their own fiefdoms.

                    Somalia is a good case study I guess but it doesn’t have the massive corporatism (as far as I am aware) which would result from a Western anarcho-capitalist society. 

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      nah, it’s a load of wank.It’s square circleism, which is why it dosenae exist. Sure, there’s people blathering about what it might look like, but that doesn’t make it exist. FFS, timecube!!

                      What do you need for capitalism? you need defined property rights, enforced by a legal authority. Pretty hard to build that in anarchy, which is the fucking absence of legal authority.

                    • It’s anarcho-Capitalism because it advocates removal of the state.

                      But you know best.

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      have a read of what they say. lots of talk about what sort of things would be ‘justifiable’. Justifiable to whom? is a question that doesn’t get mentioned a lot.

                      That’s not anarchy, it’s minarchy.

                      You could argue that capitalism might be emergent from a state of anarchy, but then you just delay the squaring of the circle. How can you set up the social infrastructure capitalism needs without enforceable property rights? And if you don’t have enforceable property rights how is it capitalism?

                      It’s just silly.

                    • You might find this interesting, PB:
                      http://c4ss.org/content/4043  

                      Only had a quick scan myself as quite busy but will have a longer read later 

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      From a quick read, yeah, s/he seems to get it. Thanks.

                    • mike e

                      Feudalism basically Contrarian

                  • Jokerman

                    anarcho-capitalism IS happening already! (there is a distortion of Gen X values for ya

          • SpaceMonkey 1.1.1.1.2

            I’m not sure they had forgotten at all. They could quite possibly have been saying to themselves… “we’ve got 30 or so years to make a killing out the chaos this will cause before the whole thing implodes.” The financiers make money on rising and falling markets… volatilaty is good.

      • Bill 1.1.2

        DtB. The theory works just fine and as intended. The lies given to us over the reason for applying the theory and its intended consequences are the problem.

        • Colonial Viper 1.1.2.1

          +1

          its like saying that the Americans and the EU are stupid for bailing out the bankers yet again. Haven’t they learnt this strategy doesn’t work?

          When in fact it works very well, for the bankers and their top echelon mates.

    • Bill 1.2

      Says a lot about the ridiculous world of disconnected, politically driven theory we live in when somebody has to do a study to ‘find’ – to all intent and purposes – that ‘hitting your thumb with a hammer’ results in a sore thumb.

      The question is why we allow such crackpot bullshit (repeated hammer + thumb = pleasure) to gain any measure of importance in our lives? And if the answer is because we ‘have no choice’ insofar as all ‘our’ politicians push crackpot b/s, partly or wholly because self promoting corporate, politically motivated media generally embrace such crackpot b/s and denigrate any politician who doesn’t – then what are we to do?

      Any answers?

      • Dr Terry 1.2.1

        Bill, one answer might be for Kiwis to become less self-depreciating in favour of self-assurance and assertion. That is a big ask!!

      • Jokerman 1.2.2

        ontological reductionism.
        levels of discourse
        reduction by levels of discourse
        may lead to epistemological reductionism

      • Jokerman 1.2.3

        ontological reductionism.

        levels of discourse
        reduction by levels of discourse
        may lead to epistemological reduction

      • Jokerman 1.2.4

        Spring Creek mgmt “going through the motions”.-bowel motions upon the Greymouth

        Islamic anti-U.S backlash reaches over 30 countries
        FF?-increased U.S commitment to M.E?

        “let us not Love with words or tongue, but with actions and in truth”

    • David H 1.3

      And it’s taken them how long to figure this out??? 1 person can only spend so much in 1 day where as 100000 spend enough to sustain a small town.

    • felix 1.4

      “Tax cuts for rich linked to income inequality, not income growth”

      In other news, finger cuts for concert pianists linked to more clumsy playing, not less.

    • aerobubble 1.5

      Just did a ‘future lifetime’ costing of rich people’s unpaid fines and charges, its trillions of dollars
      lost to the tax payers. Its a pity because welfare is one of the most cost efficient ways of
      providing for the poorest yet found, lowers cost to disease, ends ghettos, abates crime at
      its beginnings, unlike wealth that sees the richest run off with massive unreturned stolen money.
      The rich even have schemes, Ponsi schemes,… if only we were to stop the rich starting
      finance companies….

      …or are we to expect a percentage of people in whatever walk of life to fall through the
      gaps, and so a lifetime costing of some benefitaries is essential moronic, worse
      discriminatory, since those entitled to welfare aren’t criminal financial fraudsters.

  2. Logie97 2

    KidsCan and feeding the masses.
    From what we saw on Campbell Live last night, the “food” provided was lunch-box fillers. Doughy, bland snack bars, tiny raisin packets and catering size tins of baked beans and a small tub of peaches in syrup and some loaves of bread. Yes, some schools are getting (One-piece-of-fresh-fruit-one-day-a-week) – that is not a daily ration either. Yet Key and Co are being let off the hook here by this really well meaning organisation – being frequently quoted on programmes like Q+A as the answer – they are a start, yes, but not the answer.

    • Bored 2.1

      I semi watched Campbell whilst on the phone: what really pissed me off was the comments from viewers at the end, three of five said words to the effect that the parents were to blame (read it has nothing to do with money). It would seem to me that we have a very nasty attitude as a society to those less well off than ourselves, “kill the poor” seems to be the default setting for “middle NZ”. No wonder Key gets elected.

      • muzza 2.1.1

        Its the inevitable result of a broken down divided society, who has been told at an individual level, its all about you. Worst of all. people who are inclined to feel its actually all about them, also think they understand what is happening in the world, ou know they watch CNN, SKY News etc, which creates a disconnect inside them, that the poor, and those in poverty, is largely a choice they have made, its all their fault for being poor and impoverished.

        What these people fail to appreciate is that this has been designed, like the financial system, it cant currently be any other way, but because people are so stupid/selfish, they don’t realise that they too are set to become the poor and impoverished, somewhere along the timeline.

        Perhaps if people could get this through their thick heads, they may start to understand their views are going to become a self fulfilling prophecy they will not have seen coming.

        When our fellow human beings lose, we all lose!

        • Bored 2.1.1.1

          Thanks Muz, I will put the positive side back on. Occasionally I get a very dark attitude with my fellow humans, which sort of clashes with my preferred modus operandi of doing something about it for other humans. And If the glum thing overcomes me I will take sly pleasure in the discomfort of newly impoverished “aspirants”.

      • Kotahi Tāne Huna 2.1.2

        Where there is greater inequality, more people will be deprived of the jobs, incomes, housing and cars which are the markers of status. Vulnerable to the humiliation of
        relative poverty, they will be particularly sensitive to feeling disrespected and looked
        down on and unwilling to ignore incidents which appear to involve a loss of face…

        “It’s just gettin’ worse an’ worse round here. Rotherham’s just dog
        rough now, it’s fuckin’ dog rough man. All you get…is people eyein’ yer all
        time and a lot of ‘em aren’t hard at all, ‘cos hard doesn’t have to bother.
        …who wants to live with every time yer go out of the door some fucker’s
        lookin’ at yer? There’s this bloke on our street…, parks his (car) there and he
        eyes me out all time. One of these days his goin’ t’ catch me in a bad mood
        and I’m gunna …ask him what his problem is. … There’s something wrong
        with ‘em, they’re not right in the head. There’s just more and more fuckin’
        weirdo’s about. You’ve got to keep yourself fit an’ strong, and you’ve fuckin’
        got to be able to fight because more an’ more now it’s comin’ down to that
        ‘cos it’s the only thing these wankers respect. I mean if they know yer ‘andy
        and they know you’ve got hard friends – (John’s) popular just cos he’s
        fuckin’ hard, he’s respected and it’s all there is for us now. They walk past yer
        and they stare at yer and first to look away is the weaker one and once they
        see you as weak, then you’re a target to ‘em. Unless they know you’ve got
        heavy friends. … It’s fuckin’ rough.”

        Wilkinson R. Why is violence more common where inequality is greater? Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences 2004;1036:1-12

        Bored, I think we are witnessing a symptom rather than a cause.

      • Mary 2.1.3

        Why isn’t anyone pointing out that this “food in low decile schools because low income families don’t have enough money to feed their children” caper is just one more banana skin on the big slippery reversion to Poor Law thinking? Nobody wants to see hungry kids at school, but we can’t let this get in the way of what this means in the bigger scheme of things. We’ve already accepted food banks as a legitimate part of our formal welfare system – government refers people to food banks for God’s sake, and who would’ve predicted that back in 1991? We’ve also got Whanau Ora – sounds great because it’s supposedly about giving power back to Maori and who can say that’s a bad thing? Won’t be long though when we hear Key and Bennett saying it’s such a success that we’re handing welfare over to the community to deal with because “they’re so good at it”. They’ve all but done it with our young people. The Left are playing right into the hands of the greedy money fiends by letting us slip slowly but surely back into the deserving/undeserving mire which our current welfare system was designed to get us out of. It’s not hard to see what Key/English/Joyce/Bennett et al are doing and why they want this to happen.

        • weka 2.1.3.1

           We’ve also got Whanau Ora – sounds great because it’s supposedly about giving power back to Maori and who can say that’s a bad thing? Won’t be long though when we hear Key and Bennett saying it’s such a success that we’re handing welfare over to the community to deal with because “they’re so good at it”.

          Problem is, Maori are better off running their own welfare, simply because the mainstream is so crap at it. 

          • Jokerman 2.1.3.1.1

            Maori are better at serving the social needs of their communities, if funded appropriately.
            Hear thru the kumara vine that funding discrimination is occuring at the DHB board level regretably
            centralisation of contracts etc

          • millsy 2.1.3.1.2

            No real issue with Whanau Ora as long as it isnt used to replace the current welfare system, though it seems to me, from the series that was running in the herald some weeks ago, it appeared that tribal groups were using it to dicate to members how they should live their lives. One woman was told to give up her phone/internet service, even though it would be a false economy.

      • Pete 2.1.4

        It would seem to me that we have a very nasty attitude as a society to those less well off than ourselves, “kill the poor” seems to be the default setting for “middle NZ”. No wonder Key gets elected.

        I think Chris Trotter was right on the Union Report this week. There really is a nasty streak of authoritarianism in this country.

        We’ve never really had to fight for our freedoms (yes, I know the World Wars, but we were never directly imperilled), they were just developed as this country progressed. We imagine ourselves as a caring society, but that is just part of the national myth.

      • millsy 2.1.5

        The ultamite irony is that those people you mentioned will have benefited from Labour’s 1935-84 welfare/social security state. From free school milk to Housing Corp loans and everything in between.

        • aerobubble 2.1.5.1

          Its pretty simple, when the powerful get arrogant they ignore their duties and start
          blaming the great unwashed. Welfare is the most efficient way to save trillions in
          costs on the people, from disease, to poor housing, to poor nutrient, to ghettos,
          to having a healthy skilled workforce. Essentially National aren’t about to attack
          everyone, remove all business and in work welfare, they are only going to remove
          all support from a very few, those most likely to be ignored by the system.
          Its just nasty and despicable, and yes you guessed it, cost more in the long run.
          In more crime, more disease, more run down housing, more social disruption.

      • David H 2.1.6

        Bored 2.1

        Yep go and read some of the comments on the program. I had to recheck that I was still living in NZ. I tell you it’s scarey the way this is going, it’s standard Nact practice divide and conquer, but this time we are all wired up to the web, and the war is in here!

        I think that more and more people are getting fed up with the party line bullshit, and are looking for something different, I can’t say that whats written in here is true, it’s not, it’s opinion, it’s the opinion of a broad spectrum of people and in here apart from the trolls we are all equal (well moderators above equal) and no laughs at what you say. Unless it’s complete troll or stupid talk then the above equal part comes in. And the fact that the name of the Standard and other blogs have been mentioned in the MSM (thanks Bryce and Gordon) people have to come and look (I could be talking out of my ass here But Lprent are the visits by new people up and new members up as well?) If they aren’t then lets hope for more media coverage and a member to win Lotto to help fund. There are some very knowledgeable people in here from all walks of life. Unfortunately until we get more readers their voice is lost in the babble of MSM drivel.

        What I am trying to get at is this unless we adapt to the way things are happening on the net, in the Blogs, the MSM and to the way the Nats are using the net we will lose and keep losing. They have the joyous intelligence of The Whale, and of course their tame troll Farrar. And of course Hooten, king of the shout down what ever he is.

        You can see it in the coverage of the ABC fight, Half of the insider leak I suspect was probably from the fantasy of Whale and his boyfriend Duncan. The response was immediate and in some cases way over the top and it keeps happening. And we get bad press the Rabid left blog shit from the likes of JA on the Herald and the same on Stuff.

        We have Paula Benefit stripping away our rights, Widows will lose about $8.30 a week, if you miss 3 calls benefit slashed, turn down a job, benefit slashed, fail a drug test? Yep Again benefit slashed. And I really don’t have the energy or knowlege to go into what Parata is doing to education I need to learn. I am shocked at the bullshit coming from Brownlee in CHCH. Then there’s that happy Joyce creator of the latest white whale MOBIE so that makes him Capt Ahab and we all know how that ended.

        And it keeps happening. And why does it keep happening ? Because there is bugger all opposition to the plans of the Natcs, they get away with lying, cheating, bullying, etc and still they are not taken to task

        Why NOT?

        There needs to be change major change in the Labour party they need to get back the people who at the moment know that NO ONE gives a shit about them. They are the forgotten kids of 16 and 17 they are the next generation of voters, but if they see the shit that Key pulls, and gets away with, ALL the fucking time, no wonder they just don’t bother. The infighting in the Labour Party must stop it has to. it is diverting attention away from what is important, but what is important to the LP at the moment ? It seems that power rather than their constituents is the important thing. They forget we voted them in. DID they not get the message that was sent at the last election? it seems not. They need a complete clean out a democratically elected leader Get the cronies out of the picture, (this ME politics is bullshit.) how many more seats do they have to lose (hopefully to the greens BUT I fear not) to finally get the message?

        Wow sorry i needed to clear my thoughts and a sleepless night don’t help. go ahead and pick it apart I look forward to any and all criticism. Oh and please DNFTT.

      • Dr Terry 2.1.7

        Bored, I think you are on to something here.

      • AAMC 2.1.8

        On a more positive note, here are some creative young people trying to build some momentum to do something about it..

        #FeedOurFuture
        https://www.facebook.com/FeedingOurFuture

        Lets pick up some shovels and as an act of civil disobedience, turn up at every low decile school and plant fruit trees in their grounds, as a symbol of the community wanting to feed it’s children.

        • muzza 2.1.8.1

          I would say the civil disobedience is NOT taking action to assist where it is obviously needed!

          Well said AAMC

          • Logie97 2.1.8.1.1

            Several schools ran Enviroschools vegetable gardens with the assistance of grants, and Professor Delorus Umbridge of the 2009/2011 National Government scrapped the funding, but was forced to reinstate it partially because of public outcry.
            Other schools are planting areas of the ground in orchard through grants from their local councils. It will take a good 5 years plus for these trees to start producing sufficiently though … what happens in the meantime?
            Well for one, hopefully Bill Scrooge and Joky Hen and their mean administration will be history.

  3. There is an interesting article in this morning’s Herald discussing a JB Were report which raises concerns about NZ’s financial system and suggests that the Reserve Bank should be taking an active role in suppressing the value of the kiwi dollar.

    Researcher Bernard Doyle is quoted as saying “[t]he RBNZ is one of the few central banks running relatively orthodox monetary policy” and that it was a “rarity in the global economy,” with positive interest rates and no policy to print money. “Unfortunately, in a world where the major central banks are breaking all the rules, this is not an advantage,” he is quoted as saying.

    With the US, Europe and the UK printing dollars and providing cheap credit the NZ dollar will inevitably continue to increase in value as Asian banks seek out the highest interest rates.  So the export sector is in for another clobbering.

    And the Government’s response?  Do nothing and leave it to the market.  The only problem is that there is clearly not a free market operating.  

    Key naturally said that concerns about the financial system were “nonsense”.

    Oh for a government that actually thought it should try and achieve some good … 

    • prism 3.1

      ms
      Thanks for bringing that to us. Most illuminating.

    • Draco T Bastard 3.2

      Key naturally said that concerns about the financial system were “nonsense”.

      Him and his rich mates are doing well out of it so it must be good and if other people aren’t doing well out of it, well, that’s their choice.

    • muzza 3.3

      Are they short on the Kiwi $$ then….Or perhaps telling their clients they should be.

      Whatever the case, when a mob like JB Were publish a report, there is good reason for it, and its not altruistic!

  4. King Kong 4

    I see it is the first anniversary of the occupy movement. So how did that storming of the Bastille, that many here were sharpening their pitchforks for, pan out? snigger.

    • Urban Rascal 4.1

      CHANGE OF FOCUS: The Occupy movement has influenced the national dialogue about economic equality, with the word “occupy” itself becoming part of the public lexicon.

      VARIED IMPACT: The protest movement is credited with a range of more concrete accomplishments, from influencing New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s about-face on a millionaire’s tax to helping to save an Atlanta church and veterans’ homes from foreclosure in Atlanta and Minneapolis. In Rhode Island, Occupy Providence won a temporary day center to serve the homeless during the winter.

      http://news.yahoo.com/summary-box-occupy-achieved-6-months-174602618.html

      Small achievements are still achievements, and Occupy has taught societies a lot and connected struggling classes around the world. Connecting struggling classes worldwide is a pretty massive change in global discourse. The fact that your even scoffing at it while probably watching spanish mining strikes, a French socialist president and the Arab fall on the the tele news, all which are connected to the change in discourse, shows how clueless you are to the flow on effects of a connected global movement.

      Maybe the PoAL with make it a bit more relative to NZ for you monkey breath.

    • mike e 4.3

      they’ve taken a leaf out of your book and are going to climb the empire’s state building and get shot to pieces like your arguments do most days here primitive primate!

    • prism 4.4

      King Kong They just did that to amuse you oh reader of philosophy.

    • Dr Terry 4.5

      The article, KK, reports that the occupy movement remains intact and in good heart in the USA, for starters.

  5. ‘Dodgy’ John Banks protected by ‘shonky’ John Key?

    The (NOT-SO) ‘HONORABLE’ John Banks – showing all the class of a rat with a gold tooth?

    http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=449542975077413&set=a.449542061744171.101311.100000651420214&type=1&comment_id=1279393

    Penny Bright

    ‘Anti-corruption campaigner’

    http://www.dodgyjohnhasgone.com

  6. prism 6

    Heard a quote from Jay Leno –
    “Politics is show business for ugly people”.

  7. David H 7

    Watching Key on TV3 this morning and when asked about Tainui not coming to a Hui on Water? With a shrug of his shoulders, “It’s a free world” What a bullshit answer. That’s the sort of answer you give if you just don’t care about the question, or what the out come could be, It just shows what a culturally insensitive pig he can be. And he is just going to bulldoze these thefts through at any cost and to hell with the consequences. And the bribed and blind middle class are going to hand it to him on a plate, and the rest of us will pay for it for ever.

  8. I found this really nice map of what they expect to be able to extract from Afghanistan.
    About a trillion dollars worth it seems

    • mike e 8.1

      you didn’t include the opium or marijuana and Carlyle Haliburton and blackwater(now has a new name).
      The US war machine has already made $1.4 trillion Dollars out of Afghanistan!

    • Colonial Viper 8.2

      What century is it going to be before they can get a stable enough security situation to set up any mining operations of scale?

      • insider 8.2.1

        Mining and trading has been going on in Afghanistan for about 6000 years. The current events are just a blip.

    • Bill 8.3

      Sheesh, trav. That map misses the return on the US$7.8 b investment in the TAPI pipeline…of which NZ is a part funder.

    • ianmac 8.4

      Remember the proposed oil pipeline to shift oil from the north of Afghanistan to the Pakistan borders. Was it the real reason for USA getting into Afghanistan?

      • insider 8.4.1

        no-one remembers it because it was a myth or literally a pipe dream with no prospect of success.

      • Bill 8.4.2

        The Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India pipeline (TAPI) just got signed off the other week. It’s a gas pipeline. Not oil. It was first proposed back in the mid-nineties and the NYT reported at the time on how it was a wonderful idea insofar as it sidelined Iran and Russia.

        But the Taliban never controlled the north of Afghanistan and so could never have guaranteed its safety, hence, perhaps the massacre at Mazar e Sharif in 1998 was, at least in part, a clumsy attempt by them to secure control of the vital NW region?

        Pre 2001 the Taliban had attempted to give over Osama bin Ladin on a number of occasions. But the US were never exactly helpful in securing his extradition to a third country.

        By late 2001, the only pre-text that would have allowed the US to invade was if the state of Afghanistan could be tied to the terrorism of Sept 01. (To invoke Article 51 of the UN Charter) And so we are sold the story of the Taliban being in cahoots with Al qaeda and therefore responsible for the twin towers etc.

        And the Taliban tried to give up Osama bin Ladin again. And again the US were less than helpful.

        If you look at the proposed route of the TAPI pipeline and the position of major bases (which can will remain operational under either a residual US led force backed by mercaneries or by mercanaries on their own – there are already thousands employed in Afghanistan), there is a rather obvious correlation…SW Afghanistan running up to Turkmenistan.

        btw. India finally signed on to the TAPI project (welching on an agreement with Iran for a different pipeline) because they got nuclear technology from the US. And the only reason they got nuclear technology from the US was because P Goff gave up NZ’s veto on the matter.

        • Clashman 8.4.2.1

          After 9/11 the Taliban agreed to give Osama up if the US provided some evidence that he was involved/responsible for the attacks. The US wouldn’t/couldn’t.
          Its also interesting that the FBI’s most wanted page for Osama bin Laden never included any apportion of blame for 9/11
          “The FBI page states: “Usama Bin Laden is wanted in connection with the August 7, 1998, bombings of the United States Embassies in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, and Nairobi, Kenya. These attacks killed over 200 people. In addition, Bin Laden is a suspect in other terrorist attacks throughout the world.”

          When asked why there is no mention of 9/11 on the FBI’s web page, Rex Tomb, the FBI’s Chief of Investigative Publicity, is reported to have said, “The reason why 9/11 is not mentioned on Usama Bin Laden’s Most Wanted page is because the FBI has no hard evidence connecting Bin Laden to 9/11.”
          http://www.twf.org/News/Y2006/0608-BinLaden.html

          • Bill 8.4.2.1.1

            Before 9/11 the Taliban had Osama on trial for the Tanzania and Kenya bombings. But they had no evidence and so asked the US to supply what evidence they held for the prosecution. The US had already sent them a few cruise missiles and in response to a request for evidence sent a taped ’60 Minutes’ TV interview and a copy of some published magazine article. And so, the Taliban let him go.

            And there are other, on record, instances of the Taliban in discussion with the US seeking to be rid of Osama. (The US didn’t recognise the Taliban as the government of Afghanistan so there was no extradition treaty) All they wanted was some…any…pretext from the US and they would have handed him over to Saudi Arabia. But when you read the record, it appears the US wanted Osama to be just where he was.

            Pre 2001, the Talban even tried to extradite him to Saudi Arabia becasue he had broken a religious edict to not speak of terrorist events. And the Saudi’s refused to ‘play ball’.

            • Colonial Viper 8.4.2.1.1.1

              And don’t forget that Osama Bin Laden came from a very wealthy Saudi Arabian family with extensive oil and other business contacts in the US.

    • insider 8.5

      I’ve heard of wars for oil, but wars for copper and iron? Give me a break. That kind of idea is just so BC.

      • mike e 8.5.1

        what about lithium

        • insider 8.5.1.1

          Well half the world’s lithium is in Bolivia. If it is anything like as large the price will likely drop. but it’s all unproven. And it’s hardly a rare metal and war engendering

          • Colonial Viper 8.5.1.1.1

            Afghan mineral resources are worth a lot of money, sure. But that’s just icing on the cake.

            The main course are the pipeline routes for oil and gas, allowing the volatile Persian/Middle East area to be completely avoided. That’s where the real strategic driver is. The ability to bypass the Straits of Hormuz and to bypass Russia is absolute magic.

    • joe90 8.6

      I’ve heard of wars for oil, but wars for copper and iron?

      West Papua.

      • McFlock 8.6.1

        Bougainville.

        • mike e 8.6.1.1

          Chile

        • insider 8.6.1.2

          post colonial nationalism v self determination. Neither of these are about copper.

          • McFlock 8.6.1.2.1

            In the same way that Western African wars had nothing to do with diamonds.
                   
            Hypothetically (of course) I would be interested to see how much of a flying fuck PG would have given if the Panguna mine didn’t exist. Or indeed how much of a grievance the locals would have had if the’d received more than 1% of the mine profits (another 19% to PNG govt). 
                
            Many/most wars are, at the root, about money. You just need a bit more copper to get the same conflict intensity than you do oil or gold.
             

      • joe90 8.6.2

        Neither of these are about copper

        Bullshit, while Freeport McMoRan continues to pay Jakarta it’s all about copper.

  9. Jackal 9

    Public subsidizing polluting industries

    National’s Climate Change Response (Emissions Trading and Other Matters) Amendment Bill (PDF) effectively kneecaps the ETS and ensures that New Zealand will fail to meet its international obligations. Giving the public only two weeks to make submissions on that bill, the amendments to the Climate Change Response Act 2002 puts a very flimsy case for economic growth ahead of the environment… In other words it lets the polluters off the hook…

  10. millsy 10

    With those who serve, the government is giving with one hand and taking with the other

    Market rentals for base housing, coupled with the dirty little secret of NZDF housing getting sold off and taken apart bit by bit, which will eat up the 7% payrise that all NZDF personell are getting.

    Is there any reason why soldiers cannot form a union?

    Those who see the forces as a possible respite from transience, insecurity and poverty should really think again…

  11. Colonial Viper 11

    Decimation of a formerly secure US middle class community

    “A culture that does not grasp the vital interplay between morality and power, which mistakes management techniques for wisdom, and fails to understand that the measure of a civilization is its compassion, not its speed or ability to consume, condemns itself to death.” – Chris Hedges

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/guest-post-are-you-seeing-what-im-seeing

    • Dr Terry 11.1

      CV, take credit for this excellent and true quotation.

    • Dr Terry 11.2

      CV, take credit for this excellent and true quotation..

    • Draco T Bastard 11.3

      Pablo over at Kiwipolitico has a good article about the infeasibility of the US service economy.

      The basic problem of reliance on services as the core of economic activity is that making money through facilitation is not equivalent to being productive. Nor is working hard synonymous with productivity. Americans work the longest hours and take the shortest vacations of all OECD countries. By that standard they should be light-years ahead of the democratic capitalist world in terms of real productivity. But they are not. That is because hard work and income earned in services does not, in the larger scheme of things, add real value to productivity. It may make the national quality of life better, but it does not advance the overall condition of the productive apparatus. It is the economic equivalent of silver–it is nice and attractive, very malleable, easy to buy, wear and replace, but is no substitute for the economic iron required to build and progress a nation.

      And we’re following the same path to economic stagnation and collapse.

      • Jokerman 11.3.1

        i rememeber when the ‘services economy’ was the current propaganda in Aoteoroa; Yawn and despair. More of the sl word (for those that do not Think like moi)

  12. ianmac 12

    A bit ironic that the Topless Princess Kate and husband should be welcomed by traditionally garbed women in the Solomon Islads who were – umm – topless. We are a weird lot aren’t we?

    • prism 12.1

      ianmac 12
      it’s all down to culture, fashion and societal norms – that get to be tourniquets on us

  13. The Onion is running a story (obviously satire) that Obama’s popularity has spiked after he punched a Wall Street Banker in the face.  Makes you wonder though …

  14. MEDIA ADVISORY:

    Photo of a banner that will be outside John Banks electorate office
    27 Gillies Ave Newmarket between 12.30 and 1.30pm
    TODAY Tuesday 18 September 2012

    http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=449542975077413&set=a.4495

    The purpose of this protest is to hand over a letter to John Banks c/- his electorate staff, to ask whether he would be prepared to be the MP to present the following petition to the House (given that he is purportedly so concerned about the slackness of local government electoral law?

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/political/115686/banks-welcomes-changes-to-'unfair'-donations-law

    Mr Banks says the changes are well overdue.
    “As Charles Dickens said in 1838 the law is an ass – and it’s important that the Government cleans it up. No candidate for public office should go through what I had to go through.”

    In order to prevent this happening to any other candidate – I look forward to The ‘Honorable’ John Banks, MP for Epsom, agreeing to present this petition, at his earliest available opportunity.

    “That the House conduct an urgent inquiry into the findings of the Police investigation into the allegations that the Hon. John Archibald Banks, CNZM QSO, submitted a false donation return in respect to the Auckland Council Mayoral election 2010 – that it was not unlawful for the Hon. John Archibald Banks, CNZM QSO to sign and transmit his candidate’s declaration of expenses without first personally checking and verifying that the information provided (by another party) was accurate.”

    (It is noteworthy that the first signature on this petition is that of Kim Dotcom.)

    (Photocopies of this petition will be available for media.)

    Actually getting this request to staff at John Banks’ electorate office is somewhat complicated owing to the fact that I have been trespassed from it for 2 years arising from my being arrested in it, on 18 June 2012.

    Perhaps the Police will be able to help expedite proceedings?

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/auckland/local-news/7124255/Protesters-stage-sit-in-at-Banks-office

    (Have appearance in Ak District Court (Albert St) tomorrow Wed 19 September 2012 – matter will be adjourned – but will still have a protest outside
    Court from 8.30am – 9am.)

    CRI- 2012 – 004 – 113 21

    CHARGE: Wilful trespass

    Courtroom 11

    TIME: 9.00am

    Penny Bright
    ‘Anti-corruption campaigner’

    http://www.dodgyjohnhasgone.com

    • ianmac 15.1

      Perhaps Mother Jones would sit in on Key’s discussion to his inner circle. Scary stuff Joe.

    • joe90 15.2

      Esquire: The Worst Thing Romney Has Said About Americans Yet

      To this moment, I guarantee you, Romney is probably astonished at what all the fuss is about. This is simply the way the world is. There is himself, Willard Romney, and his perfect family, and his perfect life, and there is The Help, and The Help gets drunk on the job, and prunes the shrubbery badly, and pockets the silverware, and makes off with the odd can of salmon out of the pantry. He is who he is today because his breeding and his genes and his god have arranged him to be through a serious of immutable laws against which only a fool or The Help would presume to argue. He is what his golden life has made him to be, and his golden life was only the bare minimum of that to which god and nature entitled him. To ask him to doubt any of this is to ask him to doubt gravity or the movement of the tides.

  15. Dv 16

    Govt chases debt of one cent

    No one from the ministry would be interviewed. Instead it issued a statement saying it knows the one cent overpayment looks silly, but that it sends millions of letters a year through a system which doesn’t distinguish between amounts of debt.

    Read more: http://www.3news.co.nz/Govt-chases-debt-of-one-cent/tabid/1607/articleID/269608/Default.aspx#ixzz26mAy1k7f

    Compare to
    Education Pay
    On th NovoPay website.
    Many people may notice differences in their pay of up to plus or minus 10 cents. The reason for this is that Novopay, the new schools’ payroll service, rounds each component of pay separately and the accumulation may result in the up to 10 cents difference.

  16. felix 17

    Season 4 of the excellent “The Thick Of It” is currently playing in the UK, as someone kindly noted in one of the social threads recently.

    Do you think the David Shearer and the Labour leadership team are watching? I certainly hope so. The latest episode, aired a couple of days ago, is all about them.

    http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xtmtk2_the-thick-of-it-s04e02-hdtv-www-movie1k-ch_shortfilms

    (If you don’t have time to watch the whole thing, start about 3 and a half minutes in)

    • Uturn 17.1

      I will look forward to Shearer’s next speech where he refers to the “quiet bat-people” of NZ.

      • just saying 17.1.1

        Utter genius. Who knew British TV had this outstanding satire about NZ’s current ‘shad-cab’?

        First rule of Breakfast club -don’t talk about breakfast club!

        Btw who’s Malcom?

  17. AAMC 18

    Politics isn’t going to solve it unless the community forces them!

    https://www.facebook.com/FeedingOurFuture

    • Uturn 18.1

      Speaking of quiet bat people…

      A site dedicated to feeding hungry children describes them as “…starving to be better people.”

      😯

      How about,

      “We are committed to using our time and expertise to feed our children, the future of our country.”

    • SpaceMonkey 18.2

      Quite true… as Thom Hartmann on RT’s ‘The Big Picture’ pointed out a few months ago, the issue of African-American civil rights wasn’t among any political party’s policies until the protests started and the politicians saw the groundswell of public opinion.

      Meaningful change has to start at a grassroots level, once a critical number is reached, the meme/movement/thinking hits mainstream. I wonder if we are beginning to see this in NZ with the issues of children in poverty and inequality. At present many are in denial or anger (“it’s the parents fault for making bad choices”, etc) which are just two of the 5 stages of awakening:

      http://dont-tread-on.me/?p=454

      Could child-poverty and inequality, in which the state of both are an affront to what it means to be a New Zealander and the principles this country was founded on, be the trigger that results in NZ’s version of the Arab-spring uprisings?

  18. Draco T Bastard 19

    Well, somebody did say a few days ago that the next distraction from NACT would be announcing a royal visit.

  19. captain hook 20

    what I want to know is who is the Mcguiness institute who are “voluntarily” assisting the constitutional advisory panel?
    and why?
    So who is paying them?
    Where do they get their money from?
    These questions must be answered if democracy is to be preserved in New Zealand.

  20. Dv 21

    Is that you gosman?

  21. THE ‘DEAR JOHN’ LETTER – handed over to Electorate staff at PROTEST OUTSIDE JOHN BANKS’ ELECTORATE OFFICE 27 Gillies Ave, Newmarket, today, Tuesday 18 September 2012:

    The following letter was given to John Banks’ electorate staff by Jax (I have been trespassed for 2 years from this office, having been arrested for wilful trespass on 18 June 2012 – Court case tomorrow

    Wed. 19 September 2012 CRI- 2012- 004 -113 21
    Auckland District Courtroom 11, Albert St
    9am (Protest outside from 8.30am)

    _________________

    OPEN LETTER TO THE ‘HONORABLE’ JOHN BANKS – MP FOR EPSOM

    18 September 2012

    Dear John,

    RE: http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/political/115686/banks-welcomes-changes-to-'unfair'-donations-law

    Mr Banks says the changes are well overdue.

    “As Charles Dickens said in 1838 the law is an ass – and it’s important that the Government cleans it up. No candidate for public office should go through what I had to go through.”

    Given your above-mentioned publicly-stated concerns about the local electoral law ‘being an ass’, and needing to be ‘cleaned up’ – I would like to give you the opportunity to ‘put your money where your mouth is’ (as it were), on this matter.

    I am formally requesting that YOU please be the Member of Parliament to present the following petition to the House, at your earliest available opportunity:

    “That the House conduct an urgent inquiry into the findings of the Police investigation into the allegations that the Hon. John Archibald Banks, CNZM QSO, submitted a false donation return in respect to the Auckland Council Mayoral election 2010 – that it was not unlawful for the Hon. John Archibald Banks, CNZM QSO to sign and transmit his candidate’s declaration of expenses without first personally checking and verifying that the information provided (by another party) was accurate.”

    You may find it to be noteworthy that the first signature on this petition is that of Kim Dotcom, whose financial assistance to your 2010 Auckland Mayoral campaign, you may recall?

    Looking forward to your prompt response to this VERY important matter.

    Kind regards,

    Penny Bright
    ‘Anti-corruption campaigner’
    2010 Auckland Mayoral candidate

  22. Paul 23

    Listening to The Panel and an interview with a Banks Peninsula school about their closing down..after Campbell Live’s programme yesterday about another school in Christchurch.
    Sounds like the ideas from ‘Disaster Capitalism’ by Naomi Klein and what happened to New Orleans after Katrina.

  23. xtasy 24

    The Social Security (Benefit Categories and Work Focus) Amendment Bill 67-1:

    This new, 191 page long, bill can be found under the following link:
    http://www.legislation.govt.nz/bill/government/2012/0067/latest/DLM4542304.html

    The new proposed benefit regime is intended to come into force from 15 July 2013, and it contains legal provisions under which the OUTSOURCING of assessments on beneficiaries for work capacity, of “work preparation exercises” and of “administrative services” will be made possible to private non government agencies and service providers.

    There are obligations for ALL beneficiaries, incl. beneficiary parent(s) and caregiver(s):

    ● A NEW section 60 GAG by section 39 of Act to place obligation of beneficiary to work with “service providers”;
    ● Sanctions can be imposed under section 117 if client fails to comply with this;
    ● Attendance of “work preparation exercises” can be expected under section 60Q;
    ● See also section 125A (amended) re contracts with “administration service providers”.

    Sole Parent Support:
    ● This new, more restrictive benefit is covered by new sections 20A to 20H;
    ● already announced “social obligations” will be expected.

    Supported Living Payment:
    ● The new benefit that can be granted on grounds of sickness, injury or disability, and which is supposed to replace the invalid’s benefit, is covered by sections 40A to 40K;
    ● Supporting living payment recipients exempted ONLY if terminally ill, or if found to be suffering from conditions that are likely to deteriorate or “not improve”;

    Consequential Amendments:
    Re “supported living payment” benefit – see clause 88 re some changes in schedule 6 for present IB

    Drug Testing Obligations:
    and easily WINZ will place such obligations on job-seeker beneficiaries that are asked to have drug tests done on them for jobs where employers require this;
    ● A 50 per cent cut to the benefit can be imposed if a client/applicant fails such a drug;
    ● section 12J is to be amended to limit rights of appeals to the Appeal Authority if “medical” reasons are given (see sections 116C and 102B) for failing drug tests;
    ● WINZ will “compensate” employers for costs of drug tests where clients “fail” to pass them, and will then reclaim those costs from the clients (!);
    ● Beneficiaries who fail an initial drug test will also have to pay for re-compliance drug tests;

    Social Obligations by beneficiary parents:
    a) Enrol newborns with GP;
    b) Participate in ECE;
    c) Ensure attendance of school by children in their care

    Stopping benefit payments for clients who face a warrant of arrest after 28 days of issue:
    ● 10 days notice, then a “cut” of the benefit can and will be imposed;

    ● an immediate “stop” is imposed if a beneficiary – against whom a warrant has been issued – poses a “serious risk to the public”

    Disability Allowance changes and other ‘preferred supplier arrangements’:
    ● Possible “preferred supplier arrangements” for “procurement of goods and services” for welfare recipients in certain circumstances (see s 69C and also sections 125AA and 132AD);
    ● Under section 82 the C.E. can determine payment to preferred supplier or beneficiary for goods or services required as advance or special assistance needs (see also section 125AA);
    ● See also section 124 (1BA) for further provisions re “special assistance”.

    Regulations:
    ● Section 132AD provides for regulations that can set harsher standards and criteria for how “disability allowance” funds paid to beneficiaries are to be used for “specified expenses”;
    ● Other sub-sections under section 132 provide for regulations to be made for the granting, expiry and re-granting “specified benefits” and so forth.

    Re Application for Benefits:
    ● New sections 11E and 11H for “job seeker support” (incl. sick, injured, disabled) applicants, setting out “pre benefit activities” expected of them; new sections 11G and 11H set out consequences for applicants “failing” to meet such “activities” (incl. their spouse/partner);
    ● All beneficiaries appear to have to re-apply for their specified benefits (after 12 months);
    ● See also new sections 80BE and 80 BF re expiry, re-granting and so.

    Work Ability Assessments:
    ● Section 88F sets out job seeker obligations for seeking employment, and under 88F (2) the C.E. must determine the capacity to work for a job seeker – granted that support because of sickness, injury or disability; this basically allows the C.E. to “over rule” medical based assessments (in some forms)!
    ● Hence a “deferral” for “job seekers” is discretionary and based on C.E.’s determinations;
    ● Section 88H (2) allows job seeker (with sickness, injury or disability) to “apply” for “deferral”.
    ● New sections 100B and 100C to require beneficiaries to attend and participate in work ability assessments (virtually ALL beneficiaries);
    ● Section 100B (4) leaves it to the C.E. to determine the way such assessments are conducted;
    ● Procedure(s) for doing this are determined by the C.E. or her/his staff (!!!)
    ● Section 100C also leaves it up to the C.E. to determine appropriate times and frequencies of re-assessments!

    The existing medical appeal rights to a ‘Medical Board’ will in future be covered by a new section 10B (re-enacting section 53A), it changed only a bit

    Sanctions:
    ● New sections 116B and 116C replace existing sections 115 and 116A for imposing sanctions of beneficiaries not meeting a range of obligations;
    ● Other sections address matters how other sanctions for non compliance are imposed;

    ● Section 116C (2) lists some exemptions from sanctions to be imposed for failing drug testing, like drug dependency, medication that is prescribed and needs to be taken by a client

    Abatement:
    A harsh abatement regime under section 88B (6) for jobseeker support (52 week earnings to benefit comparison); so if a person earns as much as she/he could get on a benefit within 52 weeks, that may mean, NO benefit, as a client/applicant may be expected to “save” and provide for unforeseen job-loss.

    Ineligibility:
    Section 88D penalises unemployed “job seeker” beneficiaries if “fellow workers” (of a union the client/applicant belongs to), caused industrial action (strikes) leading to resulting “unemployment”. This basically makes it yet more difficult to defend worker’s rights.

    Appeal rights denied in certain cases:
    When it comes to forms of certain payments of advances, of disability allowance costs and some other “special assistance”, there is NO right to appeal WINZ decisions!

    This bill is a MONSTER bill, not only due to some controversial, excessively harsh provisions; it is so overly complex, it will be impossible to properly implement and apply in praxis. It further “over-amends” an old Act that has previously received endless amendments. The proposed changes make the Social Security Act extremely difficult to use and apply, as it is very difficult to do this already. Staff will face an administrative nightmare to use the law after all these changes. It would have been a better solution to bring in a whole new statute!

    Ultimately all this will just re-enforce the reality we have already: That beneficiaries are second class, stigmatised and disowned citizens and residents in this country.

    • just saying 24.1

      http://blog.greens.org.nz/2012/09/18/take-your-vitamins-nz/

      Thank gods for the Greens providing some goddamn opposition…

      Jan Logie
      Take your vitamins NZ
      Published: September 18, 2012
      by Jan Logie

      ….Because yesterday the Government confirmed plans to reform the sickness benefit system.

      Basically they’re getting rid of the sickness benefit merging it into the wider job seeker benefit, albeit with some exemptions from work readiness activities if someone is deemed too sick….

      …This legislation will require people diagnosed with cancer to focus on what they’re capable of, in terms of employment, rather than what they’re not. This will change once they’ve been diagnosed as terminal. If they want to keep working or look for work then great but if not surely a reasonable society would let someone battling cancer focus on that battle and not siphon their energies off into proving their work readiness or availability.

      To require people who are sick to engage in work readiness activities and look for work assumes they don’t know what’s best for them. It even seems to assume their doctor doesn’t know either.

      The evidence that shows the negative health impacts of income support is contestable and I don’t think it can be used to draw the conclusions that this Government has drawn. There is some evidence that receiving income support has negative health consequences, but this has not to my knowledge considered if this would still be true if the benefit wasn’t set below the poverty level. It also ignores the research that shows it’s actually worse to be in low paid vulnerable employment with poor conditions than it is to be on welfare….

    • weka 24.2

      Looks like they want to abolish Sickness Benefit.

      I agree, it’s hard to make sense of all of that. Will the MSD have published something that interprets it? 

      • xtasy 24.2.1

        I met a fair few people who have due to permanent health conditions been on the sickness benefit for years, while it is only meant to be a type of benefit for short to medium term sick and disabled or “incapacitated”. Really some of them should be on IB, but as most struggle to cope with WINZ staff, do not understand the law and their rights, they never dare to challenge decisions.

        Cost saving has already been the agenda for years, and the government drums it into people’s heads, that there are 13 per cent of working age people on benefits, which is unaffordable. But why not compare the 320,000 benefit reliant with the total population then?

        Much spin and manipulation, that is the truth. So many more thousands are supposed to take up jobs, while manufacturing goes down the toilet, jobs are harder to get and poverty is rampant even amongst low paid workers. So they are supposed to make a living by delivering each others pizza and burgers, cut each others hair and mow lawns, I suppose.

        Divide and rule, that is the agenda.

  24. belladonna 25

    Of course the unemployment benefit is a lot less than sickness or invalid benefit, the outcome is obvious.

    • weka 25.1

      SB and UB are the same rate (IB is higher). The difference is that on SB you are not required to look for a job. Looks like they’re not going after IB this time round at a legislative level, although they are messing with it via policy.

      • xtasy 25.1.1

        Sickness beneficiaries have already been “work tested” since May last year – in at least some cases, where case managers or other WINZ staff (Regional Health Advisors, Regional Disability Advisors) considered them “capable” of doing some work (usually part time).

        http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10723662

        Hence there have already been many cases, where WINZ staff members interpreted certain information supplied by doctors on new medical certificates (called now ‘work capacity certificates’) in their own “biased” manner. Yes, they have in some cases definitely over-ruled what doctors may have decided, pressuring sick persons to look for jobs.

        So much is not known in the wider public, it is NOT funny.

        It will all get much worse, if this bill gets passed as it is written.

  25. So key is doing gagagags as well as the fake hui and it’s all for the court case to come.

    Prime Minister John Key says a decision by some Tainui iwi to boycott the Government’s water consultation hui strengthens the Government’s legal position should the matter end up in court.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/7692845/Water-hui-boycott-strengthens-Governments-position-Key

    On his way into caucus at Parliament this morning he was asked about the unity around the water issue at the national hui last week called by King Tuheitia.

    He suggested that from the media reports he had seen there wasn’t unity.

    “There are kind of more positions than Lady Gaga’s got outfits.”

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/maori/news/article.cfm?c_id=252&objectid=10834827&ref=rss

    Deliberate and it will fail, as I have said on my post

    His deliberate ignorance is not an advantage it is a weakness and the more he speaks, the more that weakness is revealed. He thinks he is smarter than he really is – but he isn’t.

    http://mars2earth.blogspot.co.nz/2012/09/undo-gag.html

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    2 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #37, 2020
    2,082,476,000,000,000 Viability of greenhouse gas removal via the artificial addition of volcanic ash to the ocean  (not open access, unfortunately) walks us through the numbers on a particular means of CO2 removal, addition of volcanic tephra to the ocean. The mechanism is straight chemistry and the cost is fully an order of ...
    3 days ago
  • Barbados to become a republic
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Party Like It’s 1989: Bait and Switch is a Bad Look, Mr Hipkins
    At the 2017 election, the New Zealand Labour Party promised a Fees Free Policy for tertiary students. Basically, it would make the first year of university education free in 2018, with a second year in 2021, and a third in 2024. It also promised to restore Post-Graduate access to the ...
    3 days ago
  • Will the tropics eventually become uninhabitable?
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    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
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  • A first-hand look: What it’s like to live in a 2020 California wildfire evacuation zone
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  • A flaw in our electoral transparency regime
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Don’t Steal This Book
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    RedlineBy Daphna
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  • Climate Change: Carbon prices must rise
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Climate Change: Disclosure
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Tackling the hard issues – trust and relationships
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    SciBlogsBy Genomics Aotearoa
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  • Equality Network – September Newsletter
    Read the Equality Network newsletter here ...
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  • The Left’s Lost Allies.
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    5 days ago
  • Legal Beagle: Low-Hanging Fruit
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    5 days ago
  • Closing the Gap thinks that Labour’s proposal to raise the top tax rate is great but………
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    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    5 days ago
  • Climate Change: No nonsense
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • My Climate Story: Coming full Circle
    This blog post is a follow up to my recap of Al Gore's Climate Reality Leadership Training I recently participated in. One of the exercises we were asked to complete was to write about our respective "Climate Story". This is a slightly updated version to the one I had submitted during ...
    5 days ago
  • A bill to criminalise wage theft
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Liam Hehir: What the voting age debate tells us about our disconnected political media
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    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    5 days ago
  • Why Pay Taxes?
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    5 days ago
  • Now everyone’s a statistician. Here’s what armchair COVID experts are getting wrong
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    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    5 days ago
  • More timid bullshit from Labour
    Over the weekend, Labour released its welfare policy: an increase in benefit abatement thresholds. And that's it. Faced with clear evidence of ongoing hardship among beneficiaries and a call from its on Welfare Expert Advisory Group to raise core benefits by between 12 percent and 47 percent, Labour's response is ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • The Police Kill as Part of their Social Function
    by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh (Bogota; 09/11/2020) The murder of Javier Ordoñez in the neighbourhood of Villa Luz in Bogotá, Colombia at the hands of two policemen brings to the fore the issue of police violence and its function in society. First of all we should be clear that we are ...
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    5 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #37
    Story of the Week... La Niña Update... Toon of the Week... Quote of the Week... Coming Soon on SkS...  Poster of the Week... SkS Week in Review... Story of the Week... Humans exploiting and destroying nature on unprecedented scale – report Animal populations have plunged an average of 68% ...
    5 days ago
  • The 2019 measles epidemic in Samoa
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    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    5 days ago
  • Shifting all Isolation/Quarantine Facilities to a Single Air Force Base: The Need for a Critical Ana...
    Prof Nick Wilson*, Prof Michael Baker In this blog the arguments for and against shifting all COVID-19 related isolation/quarantine facilities to a single air force base at Ōhakea are considered. The main advantage would be a reduction in the risk of border control failures, which can potentially involve outbreaks ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    5 days ago
  • The difference between Green and Labour: a tale of two Finance Ministers
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    Cut your hairBy calebmorgan
    6 days ago
  • Bryce Edwards: Political Roundup – The missing election policy on free dental visits
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    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    6 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #37
    A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week: Sun, Sep 6, 2020 through Sat, Sep 12, 2020 Editor's Choice With California ablaze, Newsom blasts Trump administration for failing to fight climate change Trinity River Conservation Camp crew members drown ...
    6 days ago
  • Letter to the Editor
    Dear Sir, As we head into the run up to the upcoming election I feel it is my duty to draw your attention to the lack of fun we are currently forced to ensure by the Adern regime. In their efforts to keep the nation’s essential workers, health compromised people, ...
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    1 week ago
  • Participating in Al Gore’s Climate Reality Leadership Corps Training
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    1 week ago
  • Dysfunctional Design
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    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 week ago
  • Josh Van Veen: Can we trust the polls?
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    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    1 week ago
  • The UK wants climate action
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • In the US, the End of Days.
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    1 week ago
  • Government too slow in deploying military to assist with Covid-19 response, former defence minister ...
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    Democracy ProjectBy Geoffrey Miller
    1 week ago
  • Underwhelming
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Five things we know about COVID-19, and five we don’t
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    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    1 week ago
  • Stewardship land is conservation land
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The price of Green co-operation just went up
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Swimming with whales: you must know the risks and when it’s best to keep your distance
    Chantal Denise Pagel, Auckland University of Technology; Mark Orams, Auckland University of Technology, and Michael Lueck, Auckland University of Technology Three people were injured last month in separate humpback whale encounters off the Western Australia coast. The incidents happened during snorkelling tours on Ningaloo Reef when swimmers came too close ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Driving Out The Money-Changers Of Reactionary Christianity.
    Den Of Thieves: They describe themselves, and the money-making rackets they dignify with the name of church, “Christian”, but these ravening wolves are no such thing. The essence of the Christian faith is the giving of love – not the taking of money. It is about opening oneself to the ...
    1 week ago
  • Could academic streaming in New Zealand schools be on the way out? The evidence suggests it should b...
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    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • A Time To Begin Again.
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  • Labour’s tax trauma victims and how they might help the Greens
    If there was any doubt left, we can surely call it now. Time and date. End of. Finito. Perhaps you thought you saw a flickering eyelid or a finger move? You were wrong. Labour has given up on tax reform for the foreseeable future. One of the key remaining left/right ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    1 week ago
  • Bryce Edwards: Political Roundup – Labour gives up on tax transformation
    Will the rich get richer under Labour’s latest tax policy? Based on the analysis in reaction to yesterday’s announcement, the answer would seem to be yes. The consensus from commentators is that inequality and severe economic problems will remain unchanged or even be made worse by Labour’s new policy. Although ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    1 week ago
  • Labour on energy: Business as usual
    Labour has released its energy policy, and its basicly business as usual: bring forward the 100% renewable target to 2030, build pumped storage if the business case stacks up, restore the thermal ban and clean car standard (but not the feebate scheme), and spread a bit of money around to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Overshoot
    California is burning down again. In Oregon, the city of Medford - a town the size of Palmerston North - has had to be evacuated due to the fires. In the Atlantic, Tropical Storm Rene has become the earliest "R"-storm to form since records began, beating the previous record by ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Says it all
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Secret Lives of Lakes
    McKayla Holloway The helicopter carries a team of four Lakes380 scientists and me; we hug the Gneiss rock walls that tower over Lake Manapouri. It’s arguably one of New Zealand’s most well-known lakes – made famous by the ‘Save Manapouri’ campaign of the 1970s. My chest is drawn back into ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Winning Joke: Why The Traditional Left Will Just Have To Live With Rainy-Day Robertson’s Disappoin...
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    1 week ago
  • The Adventures of Annalax: Volume VIII
    When we last left our intrepid Drow Rogue, he was sitting in a tavern with his companions, only for a crazy Paladin to burst in, and start screaming about the Naga. It soon turned out that ...
    1 week ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #36, 2020
    Slight tweak to New Research Articles in NR are categorized by domain, roughly. This introduces the problem of items that don't neatly fit in one slot, or that have significance in more than one discipline (happily becoming more frequent as the powerful multiplier of interdisciplinary cooperation is tapped more frequently). ...
    1 week ago
  • Pressing the pause button after an adverse event happens to a vaccine trial participant
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    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    1 week ago
  • ‘Compassionate conservation’: just because we love invasive animals, doesn’t mean we should pr...
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    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Is Euthanasia a health priority for New Zealand at present?
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    1 week ago
  • Tuhia ki te rangi: a new space for student science communication
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    SciBlogsBy Sarah-Jane O'Connor
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  • If not now, when?
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • TikTok suicide video: it’s time platforms collaborated to limit disturbing content
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    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Is that it?
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Methane is short-lived in the atmosphere but leaves long-term damage
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    1 week ago
  • Community Values
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    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago

  • Government backing Māori landowners
    The Government will provide up to $1.69 million through the One Billion Trees programme to Māori landowners to make their whenua more productive through the planting of forests, both native and exotic, and improve economic and environmental outcomes, Forestry Minister Shane Jones has announced. “Around 1.5 million ha of land ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    9 hours ago
  • New tools to make nature more accessible
    People planning to head outdoors now have a resource that lets them know how accessible an area is for people with varying levels of mobility, Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage announced today. The Halberg Foundation, Sensibel, and the Department of Conservation (DOC) have launched Accessibel, a new tool which helps ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • PGF makes Māori history more accessible
    One of the most significant battle sites of the 1860s Land Wars will receive $2.96 million from the Provincial Growth Fund to improve the site and help tell the New Zealand story to visitors, Māori Development Minister Nanaia Mahuta and Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones have announced. Nanaia Mahuta ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Making it official: The journey of te reo Māori | Kia whakapūmautia: Ngā piki me ngā heke o te r...
    The journey towards recognising Māori as an official language and taonga has been captured as a web series and launched today during Te Wiki o te Reo Māori, announced Associate Arts, Culture and Heritage Minister Carmel Sepuloni. “Te reo Māori is a living language, and understanding its significance, and pathways to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Better-than-forecast GDP reflects decision to protect New Zealand
    Today’s better-than-forecast GDP figures show the expected impact of the decision to act quickly to protect New Zealanders from the global COVID-19 pandemic. GDP fell 12.2% in the June quarter from March, reflecting decisions to close New Zealand’s borders and enter Alert Level 4. “This result was better than the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Boost for COVID-19 related Pacific education needs
    The Government is investing $39.7 Million over four years to support the educational needs of Pacific learners and families in the regions hardest hit by COVID-19, with Auckland getting an immediate boost, Associate Minister of Education Jenny Salesa says.   “Like all New Zealanders Pacific families want learners to do well ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • More resources for kiwi conservation
    New Zealand’s goal of 100,000 kiwi by 2030 is being helped by an extra $19.7 million in funding to accelerate iwi and community efforts to protect kiwi, Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage announced. “$19.7 million of Jobs for Nature funding is being invested in kiwi conservation activities including increased predator ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Improving access to affordable electricity
    Ensuring New Zealanders can get the best deal on their electricity takes a step in the right direction today with the South Island launch of the EnergyMate pilot run by the Electricity Retailers’ Association, says Minister of Energy and Resources, Dr Megan Woods. EnergyMate is an industry-led programme providing coaching ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government achieves 50 percent women on state boards
    Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter announced today that the Government has reached its target of 50 percent on women on state sector board and committees – setting a new record level of women on state sector boards. “This Government is committed to having more women in leadership roles - ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Record transport investment to help economic recovery and save lives
    Transport Minister Phil Twyford released today the final Government Policy Statement on land transport (GPS) 2021 which outlines the planned $48 billion investment in services and infrastructure over the next decade. “The final GPS supports our Government’s five-point plan for economic recovery by confirming our record investments in transport infrastructure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Advancing clean energy technology
    Three ambitious and cutting-edge research programmes that will lift New Zealand’s advanced energy technology research capability over seven years, have been supported by Government today, says Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods. The projects will each receive a share of $40.7 million investment from the Strategic Science Investment Fund. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Major milestone reached in Pike River Re-entry
    The critical area for forensic examination known as Pit Bottom in Stone has been reached in what is a major milestone for the Pike River re-entry project, Minister Responsible for Pike River Re-entry Andrew Little announced. “The infrastructure located in Pit Bottom in Stone is of very significant interest in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Economic recovery guides Govt response to retirement income policy review
    The Government is working on how New Zealand’s retirement income policies and settings can best support Kiwis in light of the COVID-19 economic recovery, with the help of the Retirement Commissioner’s latest review, Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Kris Faafoi said. “The Retirement Commissioner’s three-yearly review into New Zealand’s retirement ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Iwi community hub opens in Murupara
    A new digital hub and development centre in Murupara will be instrumental in growing the region’s productivity, said Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development Fletcher Tabuteau at the official opening of two community initiatives today. “I’m pleased to be here celebrating a significant milestone for two projects set to make a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • PREFU shows economy doing better than forecast
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Spruce-up for Ōtaki community facilities
    The Kāpiti Coast town of Ōtaki will receive $1.4 million in Government funding for two projects providing scores of jobs for locals while improving community facilities, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones has announced. The Māoriland Charitable Trust will receive a $900,000 Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) grant to upgrade the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • PGF funding for Jobs for Nature programme
    The Provincial Growth Fund will provide $11.88 million to fund fencing and waterway projects nationwide that will improve the environment and create jobs in their communities, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones has announced. “These projects will create more than 100 jobs nationwide with work starting within the next couple ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Procurement to promote jobs, Māori and Pasifika businesses and sustainability
    As part of the COVID-19 recovery, the Government has strengthened its procurement rules to ensure its annual $42 billion spend creates more jobs, uses more sustainable construction practices and results in better outcomes for Māori and Pasifika, Government Ministers announced today.   Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford says the $42 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Timaru’s Theatre Royal to be upgraded and new heritage facility built
    The Government is supporting a major upgrade of Timaru’s iconic Theatre Royal and the construction of a new connected Heritage Facility museum and exhibition space with $11.6 million from the Government’s Infrastructure Fund, Jacinda Ardern announced today. “We heard the call from the community and the council. The Theatre Royal ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • District Court judge appointed
    Chrissy Montague (formerly Armstrong), barrister of Auckland has been appointed as a District Court Judge with Family Court jurisdiction to be based in Wellington, Attorney-General David Parker announced today. Ms Montague commenced practice in Auckland in 1987 and went into general practice dealing with Wills, Estates, Trusts, Conveyancing, Relationship Property ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Approval given to Commercial Film and Video Production Proposal
      A Proposal to provide for the development and operation of commercial film and video production facilities in areas of Christchurch has been given the go ahead. Hon Poto Williams, Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, has approved the Proposal, which was prepared and submitted by Regenerate Christchurch. Minister Williams ...
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