Open mike 18/09/2013

Written By: - Date published: 6:27 am, September 18th, 2013 - 118 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post. For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the link to Policy in the banner).

Step right up to the mike…

118 comments on “Open mike 18/09/2013”

  1. “A massive shale formation found in the Kiwi Nation is so huge and untouched, the New Zealand Herald reports: ‘It’s literally leaking oil and gas’

    “An independent report released in October 2012 says this shale field could hold more oil than the combined reserves of Chevron, ConocoPhillips, and Royal Dutch Shell…

    “Geologists have discovered at least 300 spots where oil and gas are bubbling at the surface.

    “These two companies (both trading below $10 a share) control over 5,000 square miles of the emerging oil field… and production has already started….

    “On the North Island of New Zealand — about 268 miles from Auckland — sits the small town of Hastings.

    “For decades there’s been nothing remarkable about this small port town… until now.

    “Massive oil deposits surrounding Hastings have been found that are 10x larger than the infamous Bakken oil field.

    “And the major permit holders to these deposits are two companies that I’m about to detail for you today….

    “The geographical similarities between the Bakken and East Coast Basin are striking.

    “And the government can already see the dollar signs.

    “The Taranaki Basin on the North Island is already under development. So it’s clear the officials there are embracing fracking as a tool to their economic growth.

    “‘I would love to see other regions experience the same economic boost, and fracking is one of the technologies than can allow that to happen.’ — Energy and Resources Minister Phil Heatley”

    http://stockgumshoe.com/reviews/crisis-and-opportunity/new-zealands-bakken-sniffing-around-christian-dehaemers-oil-teaser/

    [lprent: How many aliases does one person need? There are 5 handles being used from this IP today, several of them new.
    Adding your IP to auto-spam for my attention until I either find out this is an organisation with a static IP or I get a reduction in the numbers of handles being used. ]

    • TeKarere 1.1

      Have a nice day, lprent ! Kia Ora.

      [lprent: An explanation would be more useful. At present I’m allowing through a couple of handles like the one you wrote 8 minutes before this one. Lexing the comments tends to indicate a single person rather than many.

      The previous slow shift in handles could be just outright laziness. But three new handles in a day is clearly deliberate.

      I could always ban that IP from being able to even read the site. Any resulting screams will allow me to find out if the IP is shared. ]

      • lprent 1.1.1

        No answer. I hope you like this page… http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Astroturfing
        Because that is all you will see of this site for a while.

        • ghostrider888 1.1.1.1

          file? pls.

        • weka 1.1.1.2

          Don’t know if this was intentional Lynn, but I just posted a comment, went off while it was loading and when I came back to the tab I found that wiki astroturfing page had loaded. I used the back button on the browser and got the “Your access to this site has been limited” message page. Funny.

          Edit: I actually lost the comment I was making – couldn’t back space to the text box page, and reloading gave me a blank text box. I did recover it using Lazarus, but normally I can find a way to get ts to let me reuse the txt I’d typed before.

    • Ennui 1.2

      Ah, jiust like the Bakken shale…splendid…and the energy return on energy invested is?????? Probably too fekken much.

  2. Retired Engineer 2

    A beautiful morning light today. Not a Mallard to be seen.
    Delightful.

  3. Paul 3

    The media’s fascination with multi-millionaires and their big toys.
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11126180

    • millsy 3.1

      It is even more disturbing that his tenants didnt know who he was or what he did….

      • Paul 3.1.1

        Some of the numbers highlight the extreme wealth and inequality within our country now.
        What a sad shadow of the nation Micky Savage envisioned.
        (The corporate media just loves telling the stories and tittle tattle of ‘the rich and famous.’)

    • amirite 3.2

      and Herne Bay cougars who are drooling over Spithill…eewwww I wish I haven’t read that article.

    • Saarbo 3.3

      This explains why Auckland house prices are continuously increasing, this possibly means (Spithall investing in Auckland residential property market) that their are some pretty sophisticated investment advisors backing the Auckland property market…scarey for renters because rental cost tends to increase with the value of homes.

      Tim Watkin on the RNZ panel on Monday reckoned that given the demand for housing in Auckland it would be nearly impossible to bring the cost of housing down in Auckland…he was responding to Chris Trotter suggesting that the Greens/Labour housing policy would reduce house prices in NZ. Auckland house prices are a huge problem, I cant see how the problem can be fixed without reducing the cost of homes?

      Really need to reduce the attractiveness of investment housing I think.

      • Paul 3.3.1

        Yes multiple property ownership is a huge problem.
        More houses for some, like Coutts and Spithill, so none left for others.
        Easy one to solve.
        Capital gains tax.
        Inheritance tax.

        And bring down houses in the common good.
        Selfish property speculators need to make some sacrifices.

        • amirite 3.3.1.1

          Yes. Lecturing the plebs on the need of diversifying the investment portfolios while they’re pumping their dollars predominantly into real estate.

        • bad12 3.3.1.2

          Unfortunately neither Capital gains nor inheritance taxes will effect the Auckland property market,

          The middle class have a love affair, fueled off of tax breaks and accommodation supplement payments for 2nd and 3rd properties as rental invesments,

          ”The surge of former owner-occupied houses becoming rentals was most evident in Mt Eden,(up 19%), Mt Wellington(up 24%), and Remuera (up 10%)”, unquote Bernard Hickey,

          In 20 years across New Zealand 100,000 formerly owner-occupier homes have become rental investments, like Working for Families paid to the middle class, no political party is willing to directly address the real problem of ‘housing affordability’ for first home buyers,

          Besides more than a few of the politicians being heavily ‘invested’ themselves it would be political suicide for any Government to directly threaten the middle classes fatted golden cow…

          • Colonial Viper 3.3.1.2.1

            And it’s more than that. It’s also physical. You can’t cram 35% of your country’s population in 0.21% of your land area and not expect serious problems. It’s stupid.

            • mikesh 3.3.1.2.1.1

              “And it’s more than that. It’s also physical. You can’t cram 35% of your country’s population in 0.21% of your land area and not expect serious problems. It’s stupid.”

              Not necessarily. It would depend on population density overall.

          • Ron 3.3.1.2.2

            What is also obvious is that with so many MP’s having rental properties (and Trusts to hide them) one would not expect any MP’s to vote for any bill that affected their income streams.
            Maybe a good socialist government could expect its MP’s to not be involved in property speculation?

          • Saarbo 3.3.1.2.3

            Yes, but the main group affected by over priced housing isnt 1st home buyers, it is actually people who rent homes (Rent is a function of the house valuation). This is why over priced housing is the No 1 issue in New Zealand’s poverty issue. House price increases have contributed more to inequality than any other one factor. But it is an incredibly difficult issue, because a reduction in house valuations will probably slow the economy/spending down leading to all of the negative consequences that this brings.

            Many people over the years have been picking a housing bubble burst in Auckland but it keeps climbing, and it does seem that governments (Both L & N) havent been keen on reigning it in regardless of the negative consequences for home renters, generally our poorest.

            Obviously one answer is for state houses to do away with market based rents, to break the relationship between house valuation and rental cost. Labours existing policy will help increase supply of housing, combine this with CGT I would imagine that these initiatives will be helpful. But apparently demand in Auckland is still going to outstrip supply by quite a margin so I reckon stopping the tax deductibility of investment housing will have the biggest impact. I cannot understand what the point of encouraging people to invest in rental housing is…it simply transfers wealth from the poor to the wealthy.

        • mikesh 3.3.1.3

          “Easy one to solve.
          Capital gains tax.
          Inheritance tax.”

          Also, make interest non deductible for tax purposes. Not just for rental properties but for businesses generally.

      • bad12 3.3.2

        The Labour/Green housing plans removes some of the demand from the Auckland housing market, building and selling 10,000 100m homes in a year would remove that whole segment of new home buyer from the market while not unduly effecting that market as the homes will not be sold on the free market,

        There will still be a huge demographic wishing to buy into the current Auckland market including those who are upwardly mobile wanting a bigger, better home and a large swathe of the middle class still in love with rental property,

        While that middle class get to claim interest payments on the rental from their personal tax and also collect the accommodation supplement via the tenants this form of investment will continue unabated,

        i would assume that if rules are not put in place for the Labour/Green housing to have a Government buy back based upon original price plus equity those lucky enough to be put onto the ‘property ladder’ by such Government largesse will go on to continue the house price inflation in Auckland by using these properties as leverage in the future to gain ‘rental investments’,

        i had a little chuckle at last nights Campbell Live which featured a school teacher earning 50 grand a year who could not ‘afford’ to live in a house Her mother had sold Her,

        My pick is that She not only gets the tax rebate on interest paid on that property but the tenant also collects the maximum amount of accommodation subsidy which all up gives Her an extra dip into the tax base of 2 or 300 a week,

        The monetarism attached to the Neoliberal ethos finds this ‘rewarding’ of the winners in society to be a far better use of the tax base than it does the building of State Housing which would have achieved the same dampening effect in the Auckland housing market by removing a mass of tenants thus dampening the demand for rental properties,

        The faces may change,but, i fear the song, as far as the bread and butter issues for those who occupy the bare seats of the ‘have not’s’ table, will remain largely the same…

      • Steve 3.3.3

        The trouble with the housing market is it is very heavily geared and therefore prices are strongly driven by mortgage interest rates. International interest rates have been close to 200-300 year lows with central banks worldwide printing money in an attempt to kickstart the global economy after the GFC.

        New Zealand is no exemption as this graph shows.

        As wages have moved up little in the last decade a large component driving house prices is the reduction in interest rates.

        For example interest rates were around 11% in 2008 and now are around 5.5%. Effectively a homebuyer with a small deposit borrowing just $400,000 in 2009 can today effectively service a loan of $800,000. This is particularly true with rental investors as they heavily gear to capture tax advantages.

        The thing that will really bring property prices down with a thump is an upward movement in interest rates. This is starting to happen internationally as central banks tentatively remove the life support of QE. Select 1year at the bottom of this graph to see the almost doubling of rate in 10year US treasurys during the last few months.

        The current situation in Auckland looks like a very fast inflating bubble. Any trend upwards in interest rates is likely to deflate this market rapidly as landlords and homeowners struggle to service the increase in loan repayments and the sellers overwhelm the buyers.

        • bad12 3.3.3.1

          Which would tend to suggest that the next Labour/Green Government will need to take control of fixing interest rates,

          What you are saying is a recipe for the Government presiding at the point where interest rates start the upward lurch to not be the Government at the election following…

          • Steve 3.3.3.1.1

            Which would tend to suggest that the next Labour/Green Government will need to take control of fixing interest rates

            Trouble is that’s not really practical for a Government to take control of interest rates particularly in a small country like NZ. If the international cost of money goes up because lenders are demanding a bigger risk premium then there’s little the Government can do to control the cost of lending under current legislation.

            What you are saying is a recipe for the Government presiding at the point where interest rates start the upward lurch to not be the Government at the election following…

            Not neccessarily – would depend on who the electorate decided to blame. The finger could well be pointed at the banking community rather than the Government. It would also depend on how the Government dealt with any such “crisis”. If they chose to protect the banks rather than the electorate, as in Cyprus, they would certainly be out at the next election.

            • Colonial Viper 3.3.3.1.1.1

              “Trouble is that’s not really practical for a Government to take control of interest rates particularly in a small country like NZ”

              Its really easy to do if you wanted to; the trade off is that of reduced policy space available to the govt eg in monetary policy and taxation.

          • srylands 3.3.3.1.2

            “Which would tend to suggest that the next Labour/Green Government will need to take control of fixing interest rates”

            Yes because that generally works out so well.

            Why do you persist in pursuing fantasies? The next Labour/Green Government is not going to take control of fixing interest rates. For so many reasons that seem obvious to the whole world except for you sitting in your safe subsidised house.

            • Te Reo Putake 3.3.3.1.2.1

              The NZ Government already subtly controls interest rates, via the nominally independent Reserve Bank. I think what Bad12 is suggesting is that the guidance and parameters be changed, presumably along with changes to the inflation band targetting.

              Perhaps if you ever decide to holiday in NZ you might spend some time familiarising yourself with how things are done here. In the meantime, you could learn a thing or two here:

              http://www.rbnz.govt.nz/monetary_policy/about_monetary_policy/0072140.html

            • bad12 3.3.3.1.2.2

              Lolz, we shall see how you squeal like the little stuck piglet when interest rates turn you into an even bigger cash cow milked by the banks…

            • KJT 3.3.3.1.2.3

              Funny how idiots like Srylands have never noticed the interest rate fixing that already happens.

              Because the reserve bank fixing interest rates has worked so well??

              Not to mention “LIBOR”. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Libor_scandal

              http://kjt-kt.blogspot.co.nz/2013/05/the-reserve-bank-debt-and-property.html

              “In New Zealand we have the “Reserve Bank Act”.

              Which basically requires the reserve bank to kill the rest of the economy, whenever Auckland house prices, or wages, rise.

              Originally enacted, as a circuit breaker, to cap excessive inflation in the 80’s, politicians have kept it, long past its use by date, because in their limited view, what works once, briefly, will work perpetually.
              It could be argued that it was somewhat successful in curbing very high inflation, on that limited occasion, though others would note that the end of very high inflation ended with the slowing of the rise in oil prices.

              Now, every time the New Zealand productive economy struggles off its knees, the reserve bank delivers another knockout.”

              Actually the State, us, should take over the issuance of debt altogether. And get away from paying through the nose for US banks to lend us money “printed” in the USA and China”.

        • geoff 3.3.3.2

          Nice post, Steve. So do you think the NZ housing bubble will burst?

          • Steve 3.3.3.2.1

            Thanks Geoff.

            I do believe that without any significant increase in median incomes the bubble will burst in the more over extended areas such as Auckland. Whether this happens slowly over time, with real values falling gradually, or suddenly, really depends on what happens in global financial markets.

            What I am sure of is that being highly leveraged in the Auckland market at the moment is a high risk place to be.

        • Draco T Bastard 3.3.3.3

          The trouble with the housing market is it is very heavily geared and therefore prices are strongly driven by mortgage interest rates.

          Nope, house prices are driven by the availability of money and the private banks print that stuff with, effectively, no restrictions.

          To pull house prices back two things need to happen:
          1.) Foreign buyers to be banned
          2.) The government creates our money and not the private banks

          This will reduce demand and reduce the amount of money available to buy houses.

          Anything else, especially if it’s routed in the failed neo-liberal paradigm, won’t work.

  4. LynWiper 4

    Indeed a lovely morning….how refreshing to have hope again. Wishing the united Labour Team all the very best for the months ahead.

  5. neoleftie 5

    Interesting and valid ideas framework coming down the pipe from progressive uk purple book.
    Valid ideas for nz too.
    http://www.progressonline.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/The-Purple-Book.pdf

  6. neoleftie 6

    Quick read shock horror excess speculative investment priming the global market for another GFC
    http://t.co/rX3OgVwfEk

  7. millsy 7

    So now what?

    With Cunliffe at the helm, it is just a start.

    The next step is a policy programme to take Labour into the 2014 election. Whether or not I vote for Labour will depend on what policies that Labour will adopt for that particular campaign.

    Policies that could be of use to Labour (which can capture core votes and can be appealing to centre voters):

    Encourage co-ops in all shapes and sizes
    An investment fund for oil, gas and mining royalties
    A grand accord on mining — allowing mining to go ahead in some areas with other areas being locked up and having the key thrown away.

    • neoleftie 7.1

      That’s a good start Millsy.
      Cooperative work places
      Regional investment initiatives
      Regional training schemes targeted to skill requirements.

      • Ron 7.1.1

        two things I would love to see considered
        1. Establishing worker representation on boards of private companies.
        2. Identifying what we could call Companies of significant interest to NZ and the state taking a shareholding. We could model it along the lines of the current regimes sell off of state assets. I am sure we would get support from National if we did that
        I would suggest a stake in Fletcher’s and Fulton Hogan’s as a good start to further the interests of the people of New Zealand

  8. Te Reo Putake 8

    Council elections update No94: some facebook number crunching.

    Michael Laws for Mayor: 778 likes

    Michael Laws is a Complete Twat: 3323 members

    • Colonial Viper 8.1

      Mate, I see that union members backed Cunliffe ahead of Robertson more than 3:1. Good stuff eh!

      • Te Reo Putake 8.1.1

        I can’t take all the credit, CV. but thanks for noticing!

        • Boadicea 8.1.1.1

          EPMU members should be wondering why their execs wanted to make a recommendation to vote for Robertson.
          Seems like Union members should bring their execs back to planet Labour
          It has parallels with the Caucus: too many MP were out of synch with the membership and the country.

          • Te Reo Putake 8.1.1.1.1

            Er, not actually the case, Boadicea. The EPMU senior leadership made no recommendation and asked the voting delegates to consult with their members and vote accordingly. Which is what happened and I assume the EPMU vote was similar to the overall affiliate vote; overwhelmingly in favour of DC.

    • Rogue Trooper 8.2

      lol

  9. this one should really go viral..

    ..so if you can help make that happen..plse do..

    http://www.upworthy.com/people-should-know-about-this-awful-thing-we-do-and-most-of-us-are-simply-unaware-jl2-36b

    ..it got me..i got/am quite emotional..anger/prickling-eyes and all..

    phillip ure..

    • Chooky 9.1

      @ phillip ure

      thanks for that……beautiful and tragic!…puts anthropocentrism in perspective

      have passed it on

  10. and bad/shocking news for shane jones..eh..?

    ..penthouse has filed for bankruptcy..

    ..(does he have a support-group..?..who can rush to his side..?..

    ..tissues at the ready..?..as it were..?..)

    ..phillip ure..

  11. joe90 11

    The UN report on the Ghouta attack and the HRW response.

    http://www.hrw.org/news/2013/09/16/dispatches-yes-it-was-sarin-un-report-says-now-what

  12. Wairua 12

    Some people may find this amusing ..

    ‘Why some Australian women loathe Tony Abbott – especially now.’

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/women/womens-politics/10313055/Why-some-Australia
    n-women-loathe-Tony-Abbott-especially-now.html

    “Thing is, merely saying someone is not sexist does not alter reality if they truly are. Tony Abbott has been Prime Minister for a week and has just announced his ministry and cabinet. Of eighteen cabinet ministers chosen by Abbott, only one, Julie Bishop, the new Foreign Minister, is a woman. In Gillard’s cabinet, there were seven. Of the 12 parliamentary secretaries chosen by Abbott, only one there is female, too. Abbott has excused his selection by saying that he’s “disappointed” there aren’t more women in his cabinet, but that it’s been chosen “on merit” and there are women “knocking on the door” of cabinet in the outer ministry – still, of course, heavily outnumbered by men. That Abbott’s cabinet contains a Treasurer who couldn’t correctly add up a costings document, an Attorney General who believes religious rights trump human rights and an agriculture minister who thinks equal marriage rights for gay couples might somehow affect his daughters’ chances of finding husbands, the “merit” defence does not carry much weight. Especially not, as the Labor Opposition Leader pointed out today, Australia now has less female representation at cabinet level than Afghanistan.”

    • fender 12.1

      “….. and there are women “knocking on the door” of cabinet…..”

      Let me guess….Abbott turns up the radio to drown out the knocking…

  13. here is a how to monster tory warmongers..and corporate media-trouts..master-class..

    ..’tis beautiful to behold..

    http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article36255.htm

    ..phillip ure..

  14. fender 14

    Another one bites the dust.

  15. Rogue Trooper 15

    an odium for the moldboard plow.

    “Unruly, reckless, often crude, and always curious, the Franks (as Muslims called them) were, like the Japanese at the other end of Eurasia, aware of the innumerable ways in which civilized neighbours excelled their own attainments. By 1500, therefore, Western Europeans had acquired an impressive array of learning from their Byzantine and Muslim neighbours, and had imported an equally impressive array of technologies from distant China. In short, they profited greatly in terms of wealth and power from their uninhibited sampling of ideas, goods, and practices circulating within the Old World Web. This held fateful consequences for America and world history after 1500.
    By 1000, in the lands between the Loire and Elbe rivers, mounted knights and moldboard plow teams capable of cultivating flat, water-logged clay soils protected and supported one another very efficiently. From this core area, knights of Latin Christendom expanded their domain in every direction. Moldboard agriculture followed behind, but never caught up with the military frontier because climatic differences made the heavy plows impracticable in dry Mediterranean lands, as well as in Irish bogs and in the freezing winters of northeast Europe.
    Within limits set by the mild winters and year-round rainfall the Gulf Stream and prevailing westerly winds brought to the plains, agricultural production swelled as peasant villagers developed a sustainable type of farming that employed labour almost uniformly throughout the year. By dividing arable land into three fields- one sown in autumn to harvest in late spring, one sown in spring for autumn harvest and one left fallow to be plowed (for weed control) in summer- plow teams could work almost all year round, interrupted only for Christmas and during weeks when planting and harvesting required everyone’s urgent effort. This regime allowed a single plowman’s share of cultivated land to amount to about thirty acres- far more than needed to feed himself, family and domestic animals.
    Cooperative cultivation of open fields in NW Europe therefore permitted peasants to sustain fighting men who had a clear self-interest in guarding them against destructive raiders, together with priests and monks who attended to their relations with God. Surpluses extended the demand for artisans’ wares into peasant homes, furthering urban skills and tightening local trade and transport links. And when noble and clerical rent and tax receivers developed a taste for superior artisan products and commodities from afar, urban dwellers, recruited from the fringes of society, often led by pirate traders, began to supply them with their wants.
    Tightening their links with the rest of the Old World Web, Western Europeans encountered far more sophisticated and more highly skilled peoples than themselves.Yet, as long as local agricultural and artisanal production expanded as rapidly as they did between 1000 and 1270, and Christian knights continued to be generally successful in battle, crude Westerners could feel confidant that God was on their side as they plumbed foreigners’ knowledge and skills for purposes of their own.

    By 1500, Europe’s population was little, if at all, larger than in 1300 (famine and plague) even though by that time transport and industry were far more efficient. Stout, seaworthy ships now connected all the coasts of Europe, and interregional specialization and exchange had gathered momentum as an ever larger proportion of the population began to enter the market, thus replicating China’s commercialization after a delay of three to four centuries (dumbasses 😉 ); but unlike in China, European rulers and clerics failed to maintain control over the merchants and bankers who managed the new interregional economy.
    European merchants and bankers attended to their own defense by gaining political control of a number of sovereign city-states. They could then deal more or less as equals with other local rulers, who found it impossible to do without loans or to repay their debts without concessions to bankers’ and merchants’ interests.Since moneyed men were continually on the lookout for anything that might turn a profit, a self-sustaining process of economic, social and technological change gathered headway wherever political conditions conceded it the freedom to operate. Time and again, local interests and traditional ways of doing things were displaced by politically protected economic innovators. This situation still persists today, having first transformed European society, and then infected the whole world, marking modern times off from earlier, more stable forms of society.
    Urban self-government in Europe had another distinctive dimension. In Muslim and Chinese society, members of a single, sometimes extended family managed most economic enterprises. The strength of family ties made it difficult or impossible to trust outsiders, thus limiting the scale of most undertakings. Europeans found it easier to trust fellow citizens, regardless of blood relations or not.Extended family ties were unusually weak in most of Western Europe.
    Self-government, in short, could be applied to common enterprises far afield as well as at home, so that large-scale private undertakings, far beyond the scope of any single family became routine and familiar. Shipbuilding and mining attained special vigor due to this sort of risk sharing among multiple private investors. As a result, by 1500 the supply of base metals- especially iron- available to Europeans far surpassed what other peoples had at their disposal.
    It is plausible to believe that transfamilial commercial enterprise in the towns of medieval Europe derived from the practices of rural plow teams. Towns were unhealthful places and had to maintain themselves by attracting manpower from the countryside. In the heartlands of Western Europe, such rural recruits brought with them the habit of working in plow teams whose members came from different families. If a plowman failed to do his share of the work, or did not deal honestly with his fellows, penalties were dire indeed. Aggrieved neighbours could easily exclude him from plow teams.Such discipline, requiring mutual trust and cooperation beyond the limits of blood relations and short-sighted investment, prepared Europeans to trust one another.

    However, such commercial flexibility came at the cost of the security and human warmth that extended families can provide, and the peace that imperial states can impose.
    Indeed, endless rivalry and violence prevailed. 😎

  16. When is John Key going to stop his private sector ways of doing business over the phone, and follow the LAWFUL requirements of the Public Records Act 2005 and ensure full and accurate records are created and maintained, in his ‘public service’ role as Prime Minister of New Zealand?

    http://www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/2005/0040/latest/DLM345729.html
    ______________________________________________________________________________

    http://www.nbr.co.nz/article/key-discounts-covec-report-copper-pricing-%E2%80%98fundamentally-flawed-ts-145981

    “At question time in Parliament today, Prime Minister John Key defended comments that Chorus may go broke if the Commerce Commission pressed ahead with plans for a sharp cut in the regulated price on the copper lines, saying Cabinet had received advice based on commercial and in-confidence briefings between Chorus and Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment.

    In his post-Cabinet press conference yesterday, Key said he could not recall where the advice had come from.

    He said today that those briefings probably would have come after he received a phone call from Chorus chair Sue Sheldon in December last year when she shared her view on the impact of the regulator’s draft decision and gave the government “some understanding of the issues they would face.”

    ______________________________________________________________________________

    Penny Bright
    Auckland Mayoral candidate
    http://www.pennybright4mayor.org.nz

    • karol 16.1

      So, and important result from Cunliffe’s question to Key yesterday! MSM where are you? Gower? Garner? Young? Watkins?…

      • blue leopard (Get Lost GCSB Bill) 16.1.1

        From the many, consistent and frustrated comments I get from people from overseas who have moved here, NZ would have to have the worst quality of media information in the English speaking world (and prob beyond). Including America; where at least you can get some intelligent channels and well-thought out articles in news papers.

        Congratulations NZ Media. /sarc

        (**How about you re-assess your audience, you fuck-wits.**)

  17. joe90 17

    It’s legal.

    Release of Previously Classified August 29, 2013 Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court Opinion

    Today the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court released a previously classified opinion reauthorizing the collection of bulk telephony metadata under Section 215 of the USA Patriot Act. The opinion affirms that the bulk telephony metadata collection is both lawful and constitutional. The release of this opinion is consistent with the President’s call for more transparency on these valuable intelligence programs.

    https://icontherecord.tumblr.com/post/61526105674/release-of-previously-classified-august-29-2013

    http://www.uscourts.gov/uscourts/courts/fisc/br13-09-primary-order.pdf

  18. Rogue Trooper 18

    ooh, 300 Tractors organised by the Grower Action Group (Hort.) churn into protest the HBRC management of water at Hastings today; “RWSS takes focus away from the very real concerns of the Heretaunga Plains.

    oh, and fingerprints and DNA to be exchange between NZ and The US.
    Welcome to Stuckyville, Have a Nice Day 🙂

  19. tracey 20

    Acc changes afoot. Newer and bigger cars which guzzle petrol will have lower levies and older cheaper cars higher. Guess which part of society owns which cars?

    • Winston Smith 20.1

      Newer and bigger cars also have lower emissions than older cars

      • Ennui 20.1.1

        True, but it is still CO2 and there are lots more of them………

      • aerobubble 20.1.2

        You mean because they weigh more and can only be built bigger to reach those lower emission standards, whereas an electric car can have its engine in its wheel opening up space in the car proper.

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Properties_of_water
        Did you know water at just above freezing actually gets slightly more dense at 4 degrees. Can you imagine that, that the sea warming from 0 at the poles actually gets denser for a time and so shrinks, and once globally water is all above 4 degrees, the real effects of sea expansion will begin as the water is not linear as it gets warmer.

        Economically young people, those wanting to have time and money to spare, are refraining from buying cars, and demanding to live and work in cities that have good public transport and housing spread. Unlike Auckland, our one and only, where the elite still dithers over public transport, still has to finalize plans to build density, where all the incentives to build at the top tier of housing still exist, and make it hard for those property developers to build where the demand is.

        Welcome to NZ, the rest of the world is doing away high emission vehicles and so not engaging in stupid comparisons with our notorious fleet of old bombers. If its a good idea, you can be assured that NZ will talk it to death, and delay the solutions.

      • Draco T Bastard 20.1.3

        But the taxes for emissions should be within the fuel – not the ACC component.

    • Draco T Bastard 20.2

      IMO, cars more than 10 years old should be in the recycle queue. Better to design communities so that people don’t need a car.

    • millsy 20.3

      This is the latest in a overall plot — yes, I will call it that — to have ACC behave like just another insurance companies and start turning down more and more claims.

      When people enjoy their levy cuts, they need to realise that they came in the the backs of long term claiment, thrown off ACC, onto a benefit and into hardship.

      • miravox 20.3.1

        +1 Exactly.

        I’d prefer they spent what they have on ensuring as full rehabilitation as possible e.g. physio, pain management and psychological needs, and for them to stop declining accidents as ‘degenerative conditions’ just because someone isn’t 20 anymore or had a medical condition way back when.

  20. burt 21

    The problem will be under Part 6A the staff from Novopay will all need to be taken on by a new contractor…. Lets hope Novopay behave like Labour and ignore the intent of this policy Labour plan to make everyone else abide by.

    [lprent: You haven’t explained what 6A is, nor its relevance to the topic. Moved to OpenMike. Banned for a week for what looks like a out of context comment without explanation. Banned for a further 6 weeks – one per comment I had to move. ]

    • thatguynz 21.1

      Yawn… Fucking idiot – find a new drum to bang.

    • framu 21.2

      you grumble like an old man yet have the logic skills of a preteen – WTF is wrong with you?

      please for the love of (insert deity here) – get a new complaint!

      drying paint is more exciting than this

      (just as trivia – do you know that “watching paint dry” is actually a job? Who do you think comes up with the “drying times” on your tin of paint)

    • burt 21.3

      Yep – On the subject of rewarding failure … I can see why you lovers of power at any price and say anything to get elected get shitty when Part 6A is pointed out – Part 6A is all about rewarding failure.

      Guess it’s too much to ask for you people to objectively look at how insane that policy is ?

      • Ad 21.3.1

        What do you see are the National-led government’s main successes in the last 5 years?

        – Asset sales? How’s that MRP price going.
        – Economic growth? Yeah right.
        – Assisted exporters? That dollar’s still 6th-highest traded in the entire world
        – Run the books into a surplus? Not yet and not likely.
        – Reconstructed Christchurch? Tui billboard
        – Made the place less violent to children, or decreased poverty? Nope.

        Looking forward to going to the hustings on all of that.

        Count the days pal because your allies are walking dead.

      • Hanswurst 21.3.2

        Surely it would be possible to write a program to keep mentioning Part 6A automatically regardless of relevance or context like this, and isn’t there something in the site policy about that?

        [lprent: There is. ]

  21. MeToo 22

    Can one of youse with connections to Cunliffe please tell him that fat jokes lose votes. Even if they are directed at Gerry Brownlee.

    Cheap shots like this in the House are a really good way to keep some of us ex-Labour people staying Green…

    • MeToo 22.1

      *massive disappointment*

    • karol 22.2

      Yes. Cheap shots about weight are a turn off.

      But the rest of Cunliffe’s speech was pretty spirited and he even had Annette King nodding in agreement.

      • phillip ure 22.2.1

        cosgrove calling ryall ‘twinkle-toes’ was also kinda ugly/stupid..

        ..and parker calling (bald) joyce ‘flathead’..also sucked..

        ..they have more than enough ammunition to hand..

        ..that kinda crap just diminishes them..not their targets..

        ..they should cease and desist..immediately..

        ..just argue the ideas/policies..

        ..it’s not smart..it’s not classy..

        ..we expect better..

        ..leave that infantile behavoiur to key..

        ..he does it so much better than anyone else..

        ..phillip ure..

  22. Greywarbler 23

    Google doodle is for Leon Foucault. What a bummer that he died so early.
    Foucault died of multiple sclerosis on February 11, 1868 at the age of 48 after being made a member of many of the top scientific societies in Europe.
    He was buried in the Cimetière de Montmartre, with his name among those of seventy-two French scientists, engineers, and mathematicians engraved on the Eiffel Tower.

    http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/gadgets-and-tech/news/google-doodle-celebrates-french-physicist-lon-foucaults-194th-birthday-with-foucault-pendulum-tribute-8822360.html

    Reading all the things he worked on and is credited with discovering – he was amazing. And his name is engraved on the Eiffel Tower with 72 other great French brains. Do we have a place in New Zealand that has this sort of graffiti on it? All our clever people noted on marble or something and which we could hear details through a headset as we walked around looking at them?

    • Rogue Trooper 23.1

      Someone Else’s Country

      8 New areas of oil exploration up for offer from the Nacts next year.
      Twice as big as the previous auctions.
      434,000 km2
      yet,
      of the original 23 proposed last auction, only 10 were eventually taken up.
      Companies are struggling to find investment; competing internationally.
      Government struggling to find buyers.

      Oil, and, Water folks; let the show begin!

  23. Rogue Trooper 24

    been another EQC privacy mix-up apparently; Wellington and Seddon clients receiving combinations of theirs and others claim details, etc. (I could mail them a chisel, or whip up a filing cabinet, flatpack will do).

  24. Getting referred to the wiki page for astroturfing when I try thestandard.org.nz – I only got in to post by clicking a link in my web history.
    Either someone’s hacked into the site or the admins joke is on me.

    Edit.
    Now it’s back to normal.

  25. Rogue Trooper 26

    apparently there has been another privacy breach by EQC, mailing combinations of two claiments details combined to a number of folk. Maybe I could mail them a chisel, or a flatpack filing cabinet to assemble.

  26. MrSmith 27

    Just received from EQC after an OIA request :

    “Please be aware that EQC has received a substantial increase of Official Information requests in recent months and a response will take longer to prepare than the 20 working day statutory timeframe. If you consider that your request should be given priority, for example you are experiencing severe health or financial issues, please advise us as soon as possible with supporting documentation so that we may consider whether your request should be escalated.
     
    Presently your request may face a 5-6 month delay as EQC works through the significant demand for such information. EQC is addressing this by employing further staff and implementing smarter systems. This timeframe will be periodically reviewed with the aim of getting a response to you sooner.”

    (Emphasis added).

    @#&*%$* what can I say, if you follow me and do as your told and don’t cause any trouble we have a nice room where you can shower with your friends, otherwise sit in the rain and mud till you change your mind, EQC the stone in your shoe.

  27. Murray Olsen 28

    It seems no lessons have been learned from the GFC. When you read anything about it, it’s likely to blame sub-prime mortgages, but these were only a symptom. The real problem is the derivatives market, played with fantasy money and run by computers using algorithms based on an equation which the operators don’t understand. Within capitalism, there are no long term solutions, but short term ones could be:
    1. Prison for anyone involved in the derivatives market. Fraud is the only word to adequately describe what they are doing.
    2. A financial transactions tax, which would act to slow down the rate of transactions and damp out the problems a little.
    3. An enforced limit on the number of speculative transactions that any dealer can make over a given time period. One a week might be reasonable.
    4. Computers running trading algorithms should only be available to a trader who can publish an article on financial mathematics and the applicability of the Black-Scholes equation in a peer reviewed mathematical journal. In the hands of anyone else, they are weapons of mass destruction and severe penalties should be applied.

    In defence of mathematics – the actual equation is good maths. It just doesn’t describe the economy or the financial market in any way, shape or form. The “econophysicists” and others who try to use Fokker-Planck or stochastic differential equations to do this are modelling it as Brownian motion with a few bells and whistles. They are assuming that the Central Limit Theorem applies and the distribution of events will be Gaussian – the famous Bell curve. That’s what these equations describe. Following this approach, we should get an average of one financial crisis every century or two, at the most. Extreme events should be very rare, but they’re not. The maths is great, it’s just irrelevant.
    The main problem is that the traders don’t care. They know that we’ll bail them out. Again and again. Well, about time we bailed them up instead. Against a wall.

    • Colonial Viper 28.1

      Its become a massive mathematised ponzi scheme underwritten by savers, pensioners, tax payers and ordinary citizens.

      Lost your job and your house and want a govt bailout? Too bad buddy, only the big end of town get that!

    • muzza 28.2

      Very good Murray, that’s nicely put, and on the mark!

      The underwriting of many orders of magnitude worth of planetary energy supply, or human existence, is most likely past the point of no return, but they knew the outcomes when the path was cleared back in the 90’s.

      Now everything that is necessary to keep it together, is laid out, and when the time is right, they will collapse the lot, but that’s a little way off still, IMO!

    • Rogue Trooper 28.3

      well, that was worth waiting up for Murray Olsen. (had a primary teacher Mr. Olsen, seemed like a kind chap). All the best for the improvement of your health.

  28. GregJ 29

    NZ is increasing its metadata & information sharing ties to the US meanwhile in Brazil…

  29. tricledrown 30

    Nick Smith old lizard eyes continuing govt sleaze misleading public and parliament yesterday PinoKeyo lied about sue sheldon of Chorus ph call $600 million bail out today leak of internal email at doc proves nick smith sent a directive demanding to read any recommendations opposing hawksbay dam!

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    Gayford, pictured here on The Project, before things got wildly out of control. A bold public relations move by the Government to encourage parents to vaccinate their children has gone horribly wrong. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern appeared on tonight’s episode of Three’s The Project, where the plan was for her ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Has Mr. Whippy gone too far by parking on our front lawns?
    Mr. Whippy’s business model has driven it down a dark road of intimidation. Residents in major centres around the country are becoming disgruntled by the increasingly aggressive actions of purported ice cream company Mr. Whippy, who have taken to parking on people’s front lawns and doorsteps in a desperate attempt ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Cleaning up the water
    Today the government released its Action Plan for Healthy Waterways, aimed at cleaning up our lakes and rivers. Its actually quite good. There will be protection for wetlands, better standards for swimming spots, a requirement for continuous improvement, and better standards for wastewater and stormwater. But most importantly, there's a ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Fronting up
    Today I appeared before the Environment Committee to give an oral submission on the Zero Carbon Bill. Over 1,500 people have asked to appear in person, so they've divided into subcommittees and are off touring the country, giving people a five minute slot each. The other submitters were a mixed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear
    Anti-fluoride activists have some wealthy backers – they are erecting billboards misrepresenting the Canadian study on many New Zealand cities – and local authorities are ordering their removal because of their scaremongering. Many New Zealanders ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Democracy – I Don’t Think So
    So, those who “know best” have again done their worst. While constantly claiming to be the guardians of democracy and the constitution, and respecters of the 2016 referendum result, diehard Remainers (who have never brought themselves to believe that their advice could have been rejected) have striven might and main ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • Government says it will now build just one really nice home
    Following publication of this article, the Ministry has requested it to be noted that this supplied image is not necessarily representative of what the final house will look like, and it “probably won’t be that nice.” As part of today’s long-anticipated reset of the Government’s flagship KiwiBuild policy, Housing Minister ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Imperialism and your cup of coffee
    Over the next week or two we will be running three synopses of parts of the opening chapter of John Smith’s Imperialism in the 21st Century (New York, Monthly Review Press, 2016).  The synopsis and commentary below is written by Phil Duncan. Marx began Capital not with a sweeping historical ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Still juking the stats
    The State Services Commission and Ombudsman have released another batch of OIA statistics, covering the last six months. Request volumes are up, and the core public service is generally handling them within the legal timeframe, though this may be because they've learned to extend rather than just ignore things. And ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Hard News: Time for a New Deal: 25 years on
    In 1994, I was editing an ambitious street mag called Planet, from a fabled office at at 309 Karangahape Road. The thirteenth issue of the magazine was published in the winter of that year and its cover embodied a particularly ambitious goal: the end of cannabis prohibition.I wanted to do ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Not impressed
    KiwiBuild was one of the Ardern government's core policies. The government would end the housing crisis and make housing affordable again by building 100,000 new homes. Of course, it didn't work out like that: targets weren't met, the houses they did build were in the wrong place, and the whole ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Solar beats coal
    As the climate crisis escalates, it is now obvious that we need to radically decarbonise our economy. The good news is that its looking easy and profitable for the energy sector. Wind is already cheaper than fossil fuels, and now solar is too:The levellised cost of solar PV has fallen ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • A Step Too Far.
    A Crown Asset? For reasons relating to its own political convenience, the Crown pretends to believe that “No one owns the water.” To say otherwise would re-vivify the promises contained in the Treaty of Waitangi – most particularly those pertaining to the power of the chiefs and their proprietary rights ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Where Money Comes From
    Most people would say, no doubt, that they have a pretty good idea of what money is. They live with the reality of money every day. It is what is needed to buy the necessities of life and to maintain a decent standard of living. You get money, they would ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • Banned by the Green Party leadership: Jill Abigail on women’s rights and trans rights
    The article below was an opinion piece that appeared in the Spring 2019 issue of Te Awa (the NZ Green Party’s newsletter) and on the Greens website.  In keeping with their policy of hostility to women defending women’s right to female-only spaces, Green bureaucrats have since removed the opinion piece.  ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • The fallacy of the proximity argument.
    Longer term readers may remember my complaining that, as a political scientist, it is burdensome to have non-political scientists wanting to engage me about politics. No layperson would think to approach an astrophysicist and lecture him/her on the finer details of quarks and black holes, but everybody with an opinion ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    2 weeks ago
  • Where We Stood: Chris Trotter Replies To Stevan Eldred-Grigg.
    Joining The Fight: Stevan Eldred-Grigg's argument for New Zealand staying out of the Second World War fails not only on the hard-headed grounds of preserving the country’s strategic and economic interests; and not just on the soft-hearted grounds of duty and loyalty to the nation that had given New Zealand ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Universities back the climate strike
    On September 27, School Strike 4 Climate will be striking for a future to pressure the government for meaningful climate action. This time, they've asked adults to join them. And now, Lincoln University and Victoria University of Wellington have signed on:Victoria University of Wellington has joined Lincoln University in endorsing ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Another constitutional outrage
    Another day, another constitutional outrage in the UK. This time, the government is saying that if parliament passes a law to stop Brexit before being prorogued, they may just ignore it:A senior cabinet minister has suggested Boris Johnson could defy legislation to prevent a no-deal Brexit if it is forced ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Ending dairy in Canterbury
    Environment Canterbury has finally proposed nitrogen limits to stop dairy farmers from poisoning Christchurch's water supply. And naturally, farmers are whining about it:A proposed move by Environment Canterbury (ECan) to protect Christchurch's drinking water by setting tough – some would say, draconian – nitrate reductions in the decades ahead and ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Is National the party of climate arson?
    The Zero Carbon Bill is currently before select committee. While its targets are weak, its a generally sensible bill that promises to establish a long-term framework to guide emissions reductions. But National hasn't made up its mind on whether it will support it - and according to Andrea Vance in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago

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