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Open mike 18/11/2015

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, November 18th, 2015 - 184 comments
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184 comments on “Open mike 18/11/2015 ”

  1. vto 1

    The Women of Pike River doco exposes…

    The laws failed to protect the 29 men. Why doesn’t the chief law-maker take some responsibility?

    The owners failed to protect the 29 men. Why don’t the owners take some responsibility?

    Governments – irresponsible and not trustworthy

    Owners – irresponsible and not trustworthy

    Failures all round

    Complete and deadly failures from our current system.


    • tc 1.1

      Yup and the system failed to hold anyone accountable which was no surprise at all with this owned govt.

    • Pascals bookie 1.2

      Yep V. Just disgusting all round.

    • rawshark-yeshe 1.3

      Of all the promises Key has broken, his promises to these courageous families are the very worst example of his natural venality.

      Key’s legacy is a trail of snail slime across all we hold dear and decent.

      Brilliant in-depth documentary making; so rare in these tabloid days. Here if you missed it:


      Brave natural warriors, defeated by unnatural justice and criminality.

      • Rosie 1.3.1

        Last nights doco is essential viewing. Thanks for posting it rawshark-yeshe, for those that missed it.

        The grief, already unbearable for some of those women, is made so much worse by the massive injustice of no justice, no accountability, no burial for the men, an uncaring government and Key’s lies and insincerity.

        Tomorrow is the fifth anniversary. Love and respect to all families.

        • vto


          No respect to John Key or government

          No respect to owners

          No respect to people who support and vote for this neoliberal system.

          Shameful. Especially as these people are the ones who constantly call for accountability and responsibility from so many others. Scum bastards

          • Rosie

            “No respect to people who support and vote for this neoliberal system.”

            vto. I have some real confusion about the National supporting voting patterns of the West Coast.

            They were betrayed and mislead by the Key Government. Forget about what damage the Key regime has done to NZ society in general, It IS personal, in their communities. Surely they can see that, but then post Pike River, in 2011 and then in 2014 they party voted National in the 44% – ish range.

            Why did they do that? Why did the community not stand in solidarity with the victims and do their bit to vote the bastards that betrayed them out?

            • vto

              Don’t know Rosie, all I can put it down to is a lack of knowledge, understanding and thinking….

              I have a family member who always votes National yet complains about the things they do. When questioned on why the continued support the answer is nowhere to be seen amongst the mumbling and excuses ….

              With Pike River, very few people understand how the situation arose. It takes time to read, consider and come to a conclusion – few people do that. They only allocate time for a wave, pandas and flags.

              • Grindlebottom

                What’s your family member’s occupation vto, out of interest?

              • Rosie

                You’re probably quite right. Even so, you would not have had to read the commissions findings or Rebecca McFie’s excellent book, if you lived in the area, instead, relying on local talk, I would have thought.

                I throw my hands up. Really, I do.

                PS. One thing that did bring a little smile to my face watching the doco last night was seeing Jo Hall in the background of some of the shots, outside the hall Key was entering and in a meeting room. I couldn’t see all the writing on her t shirt but you could see FERAL on part of it. Whatever it said in full, it must have been a fingers up to Slater.

                Good on her. She suffered so much. losing so many sons and those bastards (Key and Slater) kicked her while she was down.

    • ianmac 1.4

      It seems strange that those who break even the most minor laws are examined, taken through the Courts and punished without fear or favour. Except for those who ran Pike River. Very alarming.

      • savenz 1.4.1

        Agree with all of the above. Pike River is shocking in every way.

        No justice has been served.

  2. Citizens Resistance 2

    Great result against bad New Zealand Corporate Talley’s, locked out workers gain a win. Interesting to see the details of the Employment Courts finding today.


    • Ad 2.1

      Awesome work from the Unions there, and I sincerely hope that the Maori lrunholders who were called on to boycott Talley’s for supply do so.

      I never, ever buy Talley’s anything at the supermarket.

    • tracey 2.2

      Talley’s probably shold have focused on their workers rather than the Royal visit…

    • Rosie 2.3

      Yes, a rare bit of great news yesterday! Well done workers for hanging in there for what was a really hard slog up against the Talleys.

  3. North 3

    Obama to Key re TPP…….” Well done ‘my son’ “.

    Kelvin Davis…..I guess you’re noting that cheap old “my son” line in Parliament the other day was never original.

    • Paul 3.1

      From the article you link:

      ‘They will talk about a formal signing ceremony early next year and how other countries may join the existing grouping of 12 TPP countries’

      It’s not signed yet.

      Remind everyone you know.

  4. Paul 4

    Dairy prices in decline again.
    Kids living in garages.
    Unemployment expected to stay high.

    Who will Bennett and English blame next?

    Lazy workers
    The Labour Party
    The GFC
    The Christchurch earthquakes

    What distraction will Key pull out of the Crosby Textor handbook next?

    Polar bears and pandas
    A surprise visit by Will and Kate
    The knighting of the whole All Black team
    A selfie with Barack Obama
    Declaring war on Syria
    Another Instagram by Max?

  5. b waghorn 5

    As someone who feels a little like a pakeha tuhoe and would love to see the uruwera lifted out of the doldrems this is very interesting.
    BTW Mr Climo is the reason I love reading .and I’ve meet Nikapuru several times .

    • weka 5.1

      Nice one b, that’s a very interesting read and good to see something a bit more indepth. The thing that stands out for me is the core of it is Tūhoe identity and the importance of maintaining culture.

      There’s going to be a challenge for lefties. It’s time we started seeing iwi as having governance rights rather than being private enterprises. If Tūhoe want to manage welfare, education, health etc for their people, let them.

      I’m a strong believer in the state providing for the common good, but it’s obvious now that the state is no longer competent at many of those things. Let Māori lead the way on this. The tricky thing is going to be the power structures used, but for Māori at least it’s hard to see them being any worse off than they are now.

      • Rosie 5.1.1

        Looking at your last paragraph made me click on b waghorn’s link out of interest, but it is coming up with an error notice. I’m wondering if the article is about Tuhoe self governance.

        They have a strong and proud past of being self sufficient and independent under the leadership of Rua Kenana and his community at Maungapohotu in Te Urewera in the early 20th century.
        Tragically this independence caused real irritation among the authorities and had disastrous consequences for the community during Te Urewera’s first Police raids, well before they returned in 2007.

        Can yourself or bw direct me to a google search related to the article perhaps?

        • weka

          Looks like the Herald site in general is down, I’d try again a bit later. The article is about the intitiatives that Tūhoe are taking to address the welfare, health and education needs of the people in their rohe, according to their own kaupapa. That includes to what extent they can get the funding to replace state services. It’s definitely worth a read if it comes back.

          edit, it’s back now.

      • b waghorn 5.1.2

        When it comes to welfare I still don’t have a strong set of opinions due to its complexity but surely a one size fits all method is going to fail.
        Nikipuru or Joe as I knew him had his house tipped over in the Tuhoe raids so to come through all he has and be on a positive path is awesome.

    • maui 5.2

      It will be very interesting to see how this turns out over the years. All power to Tuhoe if they can give their people’s lives more meaning. I wonder if they can create some sort of Co-op scheme where they house and feed their people in return for modest labour or casual work.

      I think they’ll take a more holistic approach to governance and will be much more adaptive. Considering most of the rest of the country’s ruling institutions are enslaved to neo-liberal ideas, Tuhoe might get through the economic and climate disasters that the 21st century throws at us the best.

  6. millsy 6

    I dont think privatization of social services into the hands of a tribal elite is going to help anyone. It seems to me that Tamiti Kruger wants his own fiefdom and control the lives of those in his rohe.

    • b waghorn 6.1

      Have you got any evidence he’s just in it for himself.? Is it possible that trying something else might work.?

  7. Whispering Kate 7

    Listening on the news this morning about Auckland’s homeless, hearing the Salvation Army spokeswoman talking of a homeless family living in a Housing Corp garage being evicted from it. They had a child who had a terminal illness and the S.A. lady was saying that Housing Corp could have at least allowed them to stay in the garage.

    What a vindictive, nasty underbelly we have in this country in our Government social agencies. What is this punishing element getting out of kicking people out of their homes because their income cannot support housing rents. Very saddening that it has become a “punishment regime” they are now putting in place. Vindictive is all I can say about evicting a family out of a garage and on to the street with a very sick child who needs vital warmth and a roof over its head. The people seen sleeping on the streets is a national disgrace.

    We, each and every one of us is a heart beat away from homelessness from many different circumstances. We should be very very afraid.

    • Draco T Bastard 7.1


    • Rosemary McDonald 7.2

      Perhaps someone could ask Paula Rebstock how these families are to survive when their rent is about the same as her hourly rate of pay.


      It bodes ill for Natrad airing these stories…http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/289945/akl-kids-sleeping-in-cars-and-garages

      The “vindictive, nasty underbelly” WK comes not only from the elected representatives but also from those who have been part of the bureaucracy for years.

      These “public servants” can be so removed from the real world that they forget they are making policy that actually puts the lives of children at risk.

      Perhaps they really don’t care.

      (I have looked in the eyes of some of these public servants..cold, dead, and happy to condemn)

      • Whispering Kate 7.2.1

        Rosemary I think its a bit rich this country calling Australia in for their Human Rights abuses with Christmas Island – what about the basic Human Right of having a roof over one’s head. Absolutely appalling the track this Government is going down – reminds me of Rachett Ruth in the ’90’s.

        I wonder how low the National voters of this country will stoop before their conscience and moral compass sees the light – it will take the AK housing market to crash and then lets see them whinging. Sickening.

        • Draco T Bastard

          I wonder how low the National voters of this country will stoop before their conscience and moral compass sees the light

          I’m sure that many would be happy with the return of the poorhouses and even with outright slavery. Some don’t actually have a conscience.

          • North

            While they’re so alive with the ‘Cocktail Party Grimace’ and the “Gorgeous Darling…..” and the fucking ‘Double Shot’ coffee wank. Pigs ! All of them !

            “Well you must admit……many of these people just don’t want to work……wah wah wah”

            While their fucking idols the Talleys are found guilty of bad faith in the workplace thereby shitting on a fundamental plank of The Law while His Gaucheness gives the Big Talley the knighthood quid pro quo the funding.

            And Marie Antoinette Tolley plumps for three times the already outrageous grand a day of public money for soldier Rebstock to produce the goods politically convenient for her.

            Where the fuck are we ? Haiti ? Papa Doc ? We’re meant to respect their daubed gargoyles ?

    • tracey 7.3

      well said

  8. ianmac 8

    Anyone else getting multiple Pledgeme Scoop requests? 5 more late last night?

  9. tracey 9

    Josie Pagani tweeted that ISIS is worse than TPP but you can’t tell that from the protests.

    Has she taken to the streets for anything in the last 20 years? Her sneering disregard for those who choose to protest is frightening in one who claims such strong Labour affiliations. I wonder if she tweeted it from a cafe in a wealthy area while she supped coffee during a wroking day.

    • maui 9.1

      Sounds like she should be joining our troops in Taji cheering them on. Ignoring hospitals that get caught in the crossfire and the like. She is on a war footing and the baddies need to be wiped off the face of the earth.

    • Barfly 9.2

      “Josie Pagani tweeted that ISIS is worse than TPP but you can’t tell that from the protests.”

      But Josie…New Zealand isn’t signing up with ISIS……………

      • tracey 9.2.1

        and our PM has been fighting the war on terrorism for months or years, hasn’t he? That’s why we sent troops, that’s why we have to be surveilled. It’s like Josie doesn’t know that ISIS is being eradicated already.

    • North 9.3

      Pagani is a fraudulent thing. Just like that other goon who departed his claimed leftist roots years ago but still flaunts and vaunts.

  10. For those of you interested in learning more about the events in Paris I’ll be on Raglan radio at 9:35 am. That is in five minutes:


  11. Penny Bright 11

    Currently – I’m over in Brisbane at the 2015 Australian Public Sector Anti-Corruption Conference.

    However – Im taking the time to post this ‘Whistle-blower ALERT’ – which may be controversial to some people.

    So be it.

    Please be reminded of the following?

    STATE housing is PUBLIC.

    SOCIAL housing is PRIVATE.

    Alan Johnson, Co-convenor of the Child Poverty Action Group, and employee of the Salvation Army, supports SOCIAL housing, and supports the Tamaki Redevelopment Company (TRC).

    Please note that the Salvation Army ‘Policy and Research Unit’ – for which Alan Johnson works – is an ‘honorary member’ of the private sector lobby group, the Committee for Auckland.

    Check for yourselves.

    http://www.committeeforauckland.co.nz membership

    The TRC is jointly owned by the Crown and Auckland Council (Central and Local Government).

    Alan Johnson supports the transfer of 2,800 Housing NZ properties (STATE houses) to the TRC.

    (Alan Johnson told me this to my face).

    Once these 2,800 STATE houses are transferred to the TRC – the next step will be their privatisation to ‘social housing’ providers / developers.

    Beware the ‘weasel words’!

    That is why I for one am opposed to the ‘Hikoi for homes’ – because in my view, there is another agenda, a PRIVATISATION agenda happening behind the scenes.

    I support some of the work being done by Child Poverty Action Group, but NOT this action on housing.

    I’m a ‘whistle-blower’ and will call it as I see it, based upon FACTS and EVIDENCE.

    I stand with those directly affected State tenants who are opposing the privatisation of STATE housing, and opposing the TRANSFER of 2,800 Housing NZ properties to the Tamaki Redevelopment Company.

    In my view – it is time for a major review and ROLL BACK of neo-liberal ‘Rogernomic$’.

    In my view, essential services such as the provision of STATE housing, should be owned, operated and managed under the ‘not for profit’ PUBLIC SERVICE, not the ‘commercialised / corporatised / PRIVATISED ‘model.

    Throwing the ‘corporatised’ Housing NZ baby out with the bath water and replacing it with the PRIVATE ‘social housing’ model, in my view is fundamentally flawed.

    In my view, STATE housing should remain under public ownership, operation and management, where looking after State tenants and State houses, should be the Numbef One priority.

    This WAR on the POOR – has got to stop.

    In my view, people need to be aware Remember folks!

    STATE housing is PUBLIC.

    SOCIAL housing is PRIVATE.

    Alan Johnson, Co-convenor of the Child Poverty Action Group, and employee of the Salvation Army, supports SOCIAL housing, and supports the Tamaki Redevelopment Company (TRC).

    Please note that the Salvation Army ‘Policy and Research Unit’ – for which Alan Johnson works – is an ‘honorary member’ of the private sector lobby group, the Committee for Auckland.

    Check for yourselves.

    http://www.committeeforauckland.co.nz membership

    The TRC is jointly owned by the Crown and Auckland Council (Central and Local Government).

    Alan Johnson supports the transfer of 2,800 Housing NZ properties (STATE houses) to the TRC.

    (Alan Johnson told me this to my face).

    Once these 2,800 STATE houses are transferred to the TRC – the next step will be their privatisation to ‘social housing’ providers / developers.

    Beware the ‘weasel words’!

    That is why I for one am opposed to the ‘Hikoi for homes’ – because in my view, there is another agenda, a PRIVATISATION agenda happening behind the scenes.

    I support some of the work being done by Child Poverty Action Group, but NOT this action on housing.

    I’m a ‘whistle-blower’ and will call it as I see it, based upon FACTS and EVIDENCE.

    I stand with those directly affected State tenants who are opposing the privatisation of STATE housing, and opposing the TRANSFER of 2,800 Housing NZ properties to the Tamaki Redevelopment Company.

    Penny Bright.

  12. Penny Bright 12

    Apologies for the duplication in my previous post.

    Don’t know how that happened, and although I clicked on ‘edit’ – it wouldn’t let me 🙁

    Sorry about that.

    Penny Bright

  13. tracey 13


    Tolley wanted to pay Rebstock 3000k per day, sow e need to be very grateful she ONLY got 2000k a day, thanks to Paula Bennett. WHAT planet are these peopel living on… look at the struggles of those Talley’s workers while a Government supporter was breaking our laws.

    • Morrissey 13.1

      If that had been a Labour minister advocating such a pay extravaganza, we would hear about it morning, noon and night, on radio, television and in the papers until the next election.

      • Ch-ch Chiquita 13.1.1

        Oh, but you don’t understand. If we will not pay such amounts they will take all their talent and go overseas (/sarc).

        I volunteer to deliver these people, and their feeling of entitlement, their plane ticket.

  14. Morrissey 14

    She’s notoriously soft on politicians, but she’s a terror to choreographers.
    Is Susie Ferguson the weakest performer on RNZ National?

    Morning Report, RNZ National, Wednesday 18 November 2015, 8:50 a.m.

    If you’ve endured TV3’s pisspoor The Nation you may have noticed RNZ National’s Susie Ferguson, who occasionally appears as a panelist. She sits silent most of the time, with a sardonic half grin on her lips, rarely contributing anything of value or interest to the discussions.

    Susie Ferguson first came to our attention two years ago, like a woman unwittingly blundering into the crosshairs of Chris Kyle’s semi-automatic 7.62 NATO Mk 11 sniper rifle, when she conducted a particularly foolish radio interview with movie executive Neil Foley….

    Open mike 25/07/2013

    This morning she was back at it, when she interviewed Justin Bieber’s choreographer Paris Goebel, who is a New Zealander. Ferguson’s producer must have thought that was an idiot-proof assignment. Unfortunately, Ferguson took it into her head to treat Paris Goebel as if she were not a choreographer, but a felon….

    SUSIE FERGUSON: In these clips you’ve got quite a few New Zealanders, and quite a lot of the filming was done in New Zealand as well. Is that right?


    SUSIE FERGUSON: Why was it that yoooouuu… chose to go THAT way?

    Long, awkward pause…

    PARIS GOEBEL: Ahhhhmmm, ‘cos I’m FROM New Zealand?

    SUSIE FERGUSON: [closing in for the kill] But was it as straightforward as that? ‘Cos obviously, you know, you’ve worked in a lot of different places, why was it for this, for Justin Bieber’s album, y’know he’s a Canadian, and I guess, y’know, you just wanted to go back to your roots.

    PARIS GOEBEL: I guess it just makes sense….

    ….ad absurdum….


    More Susie Ferguson inanity….

    Open mike 24/12/2014

    Open mike 17/08/2015

    Open mike 05/11/2015

  15. Draco T Bastard 15

    This is why abortions need to be freely available:

    A new study quantifies some of those fears: At least 100,000 Texas women—and as many as 240,000—between the ages of 18 and 49 have attempted to self-induce abortions, according to a report released today by the Texas Policy Evaluation Project (TxPEP). The study also found that it is possible that the rate of women attempting to self-induce abortions is rising in Texas as a result of the state’s additional restrictions on abortion care. The report points to previous studies that have explored the correlation between a rise in abortion restrictions and the prevalence of self-induced abortions. A 2008 national study found that about 2 percent of women reported that they tried to terminate pregnancies on their own. In 2012, a year after Texas passed several new abortion restrictions, a study of Texas women seeking care at an abortion clinic found that about 7 percent reported attempting to end their pregnancies without medical assistance before seeking clinic care.

    Eventually this will result in death.

    • mac1 15.1

      My immediate reaction to “Eventually this will result in death”, is that abortions do…………… always.

      • tracey 15.1.1

        death has many guises. Did you think of the notion of sacrificing a woman for a child too?

        • mac1

          Tracey, I am very aware of that notion, and the conflict brought between the two separate rights.

          I believe that it has been most poignantly expressed in the song “Queen Jane” which is one of the Child ballads. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Death_of_Queen_Jane

          The song has been beautifully sung by Micheal Domnhaill and by Loreena McKennit. This is Domnhaill’s version. It is one of the most moving pieces of music I know, especially with the uillean pipes. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7aeNwpU19pA

          Then of course the problem was not the issue between abortion and allowing birth, but between caesarean section and the death of both mother and probably the child, in times of medical inadequacy. But the rights of the mother versus the child and the inherent danger to a mother in pregnancy and childbirth were the issues. The song speaks both of the sacrifice which Queen Jane considers and wants to happen, and the agonising of the father, King Henry.

          The song though does beautifully portray the notion of sacrifice and danger.

          • Tracey

            I only asked, mac1, because through history women have been sacrificed over and over and over for the hope of, or the fact of, a boy child.

            The song is about a woman at full term.

      • Draco T Bastard 15.1.2

        Nope, a foetus isn’t alive.

        • Grindlebottom

          That depends on the definition of alive, doesn’t it? I’d class a foetus as alive, just not capable of independent survival in the early stages of development. Some will object to the characterisation but looked at objectively, like any other developing offspring in a womb, it’s parasitic on the mother.

          • McFlock

            It also lacks sentience.

            • Ergo Robertina

              That’s a very unequivocal statement – are you sure about that?
              When does sentience begin – all at once?

              It puzzles me the seemingly ideological determination of people to run this argument and, essentially, deny reality.
              I support abortion law reform but that’s because I’m uncomfortable about abortion – in other words, it’s more humane to carry out the procedure as early as possible.

              • McFlock

                The earlier in the development, the more sure I am.

                • weka

                  The problem I have with the ‘it’s not viable’ argument is what happens when science gets to the point of making it viable.

                  • McFlock

                    Well, my impulse is to say that it’s still not viable. It still ceases to function almost immediately without intensive support.

                    But then the alternative treatment to abortion might end up being to transfer it from the womb into some artificial equivalent.

          • Draco T Bastard

            just not capable of independent survival in the early stages of development.

            Which is what prevents it from being classified as life.

            • Colonial Viper

              stop kidding yourself with cleverness DTB.

              Next you’ll claim that murder of a woman in her first trimester doesn’t also involve the murder of the foetus.

            • Grindlebottom

              Your definition is too narrow DTB. What characterises life is an organism that has all or most of several characteristics. A foetus has an organised multicellular structure, its cells respond to external stimuli, it consumes nutrients & expels waste, undergoes cell division and multiplication, increases in complexity and size as it grows and develops. It has life, even if it’s completely dependent on its mother for continued survival as it develops.

              I’m not talking about when a foetus should be considered a conscious human being which is a separate matter altogether.

              I should correct my earlier observation that a foetus is parasitic. I was wrong. To be parasitic it has to be a separate species from the host.

              • weka

                It’s part of the woman’s body, and like other parts she gets to decide what happens to it.

                • Grindlebottom

                  I don’t have any argument with that up to the point where the foetus is viable weka. After that it’s a grey area for me. I wouldn’t like a woman aborting in the 9th month for example if there was no health or safety issue for her. It becomes a bit more complicated for me working back from there as we’ve a baby born at 20 weeks in the family who’s survived & thrived.

                  Edit: Actually 20 weeks can’t be right: I need to check that. But it was an emergency caesarian and not many weeks beyond 20. The baby was perfectly formed but would fit in my hand.

              • Draco T Bastard

                Your definition is too narrow DTB.

                No it’s not as I included the entire scientific definition:

                The smallest contiguous unit of life is called an organism. Organisms are composed of one or more cells, undergo metabolism, maintain homeostasis, can grow, respond to stimuli, reproduce (either sexually or asexually) and, through evolution, adapt to their environment in successive generations.[1]

                By that definition a foetus is not a life.

        • Magisterium

          Why is that relevant? Mosquitos are alive and I kill every one of those I see.

        • Ergo Robertina

          Why do you say that, Draco?
          How could a foetus not be alive?

          • Draco T Bastard

            Because it’s not self sustainable. Sure, it’s in the formation stage of life but it is not yet life.

            • Ergo Robertina

              So a month-old baby who depends on its parents to sustain its life with food and shelter is not alive?

              • McFlock

                A month old baby is has brain activity and is not a lump of decaying and cyanotic cells within moments of being removed from the body of a specific person.

                Anybody can feed or house a particular baby. But a particular fetus needs a particular womb to reproduce its cells enough to one day possibly become a living, thinking, person.

                • Ergo Robertina

                  What about a baby born at 24 weeks’ gestation connected to an incubator to enable survival? Are they alive?

                  • McFlock

                    legally, yes.
                    Personally, I wouldn’t be committing to it until it can live for more than a few minutes outside of an artificial environment. And then whether it has any higher brain function.

                    Babies are ok, but they’re pretty one-dimensional for the first few months after full term.

                    • Ergo Robertina

                      But given your comments below, you see the life as being ”legally” equivalent with that of a plant? How does that work?

                    • McFlock

                      At the moment there seem to be three different uses of the word “life” in this conversation:

                      biological, as in a cluster of cells, such as a plant;
                      legal, as in whether the killing of that thing would count as homocide in a court of law; and
                      the one that is most relevant to the abortion ethics discussion: human life. Not just a cluster of cells, a human being.

                  • Grindlebottom

                    Biologically a growing foetus is alive. So is a premature baby. I explain why above. If it is alive it must have life. When it ceases to do all those things I mention above it is dead. It is no longer alive.

                    • McFlock

                      this bit?

                      A foetus has an organised multicellular structure, its cells respond to external stimuli, it consumes nutrients & expels waste, undergoes cell division and multiplication, increases in complexity and size as it grows and develops.

                      well, yes, in the sense that a plant is alive.

                      But somehow I think the protestors I saw outside the hospital the other day weren’t saying people shouldn’t mow their lawn…

                    • Grindlebottom

                      But somehow I think the protestors I saw outside the hospital the other day weren’t saying people shouldn’t mow their lawn…

                      Ahhh, yup … lost me a bit there, but as long as we’re agreed something alive has life the above I think is another issue.

                    • McFlock

                      Yes. A fetus has just as much “life” as a plant.
                      How that strictly biological interpretation applies to the abortion discussion, I have no idea.

                    • Grindlebottom

                      The claim was made above that a foetus is not alive. It is. That’s all. The abortion discussion is therefore not about whether a foetus is alive.
                      The debate is about whether and when that life should be deliberately terminated. I’m of the view it’s the woman’s right to decide, and I don’t like the idea of women being forced to carry a child they don’t want to. But I’m conflicted about it when the foetus is a fully formed and viable child. The issue of viability itself is even more complicated now by improved technology.

                    • Grindlebottom

                      Seen. The question of whether something is alive is biological. Whether and when it is considered an independent human being is another matter. I explain my view on that in the abortion context above. It is not set in stone. Good night McFlock.

                    • ropata

                      IMO a foetus is “nascent life” not actual life and not a full human person.

                    • McFlock

                      Grindlebottom, cutting plants is not murder, even though plants are “alive”.
                      The abortion discussion is about whether it’s ending a human life, not plant life.

                    • Grindlebottom

                      McFlock. Yes. I have already agreed that. The issue of abortion is not whether a foetus is alive but whether and when it is a human and whether and when that life can/should be terminated.

                    • McFlock

                      Well, only if you’re a biologist sticking purely to the meaning of “life” that is most irrelevant to the discussion

                    • Grindlebottom

                      It wasn’t irrelevant to the discussion McFlock.

                      Open mike 18/11/2015

                      The discussion just persisted way past the point where it needed to because the abortion debate is not about whether a foetus is alive. It is, which you grudgingly acknowledge.

                      The abortion debate is on issues like whether and when a human foetus is a human person, whether and when it is a child and independently viable outside a womb (subject to someone being willing to care for it), and whether and when it has an independent and inherent “right to life” – which in the abortion context means the right not to have its life terminated.

                    • McFlock

                      It is a biological cluster of human tissue cells. By a strictly biological definition it is “human” and “alive”.

                      But it is not a human life, or a live human.

                    • Grindlebottom

                      You can choose to believe that. Others can choose to believe otherwise. It’s a matter of semantics what a human being is. A human foetus to me is a human being, just in its embryonic developing form, not its juvenile developing or adult form.
                      I don’t consider it a human person though.

                    • McFlock

                      this entire subthread has been semantics.

        • Colonial Viper

          “Nope, a foetus isn’t alive.”

          OMG what bullshit. At least be honest about what you are advocating for. Termination of a pregnancy is termination of a life. Support it if you want, but dont kid yourself.

          • Chooky

            too many people on the planet is also termination of life

            …it is about time people woke up to this fact

            …and stopped being so anthropocentric

            …not to mention chauvinist ( eg Catholic Church )

            …too many humans ( in the billions) on this planet are causing this planet to die …and with it all other forms of life

            …abortion is the least of our problems

    • tracey 15.2

      but only to women

    • tracey 15.3

      Note how quickly and substantively the responses moved to the unborn child, ignoring the danger being faced by already alive women?

  16. Morrissey 16

    Inanity Watch

    * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

    “The next step for the people of Paris is the process of healing up.”

    * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

    —-Heather Du Plessis-Allan, Story, TV3, Tuesday 17 November 2015

    Inanity Watch, also known as Mediocrity Watch, aims to keep you informed of—or, to quote the epically mediocre Simon Dallow, to be “right across”—the shoddiest, least professional, most insulting journalism and taxpayer-subsidised-sensitive-singer-songwriting from all over the world, but especially New Zealand. It is produced by DeakerWatch®, a division of Daisycutter Sports Inc.

    More inanity and mediocrity….

    Open mike 15/12/2013

  17. alwyn 18

    What did we expect from Annette King?
    MP for Rongatai, Ms King, has shown she is either a liar or else merely completely stupid.
    When claiming that the standards for getting on the waiting list for surgery she compared the minimum pain value for getting surgery in 2013 with the average value in 2015 and claimed that people were worse off.
    I suppose it was worth it though. The hard-left, and lazy, journalists in the MSM happily published her claims without checking them and they became a front page story.
    The real numbers get fitted into the paper on an inside page some days later.
    I suppose we have to accept these things from the OAP in Wellington’s south. She has to try something of course. I have heard rumours, from some Labour party supporting friends, that she is under severe pressure to relinquish the Labour nomination in the seat to little Andie. Anyone more closely involved willing to comment?

    • Clean_power 18.1

      Mrs King will never leave of her own volition. Mr Little wants her there and she will hang on to the job/perk/sinecure forever and a day.

      • tracey 18.1.1

        If only Labour had 300k per intended retiree to sweeten the post like National, aye clean-power (seeing as you are a fan of uninformed comment)

    • joe90 18.2

      average acuity (severity of the condition) for patients who had received surgery for their hip or knee. We said 70.

      On the upside, those on fifty points will be delighted to know they’ll be treated at seventy.

      • alwyn 18.2.1

        Good God Joe.
        You really are as stupid, or mendacious, as Annette is.

        • joe90

          In pain, with little or no hope of anything other than m-Eslon SR and we are unable to offer surgery at this time, actually.

          • alwyn

            I have commented before on this subject and the fact is that at least you are told the truth. Under King you would have been put on the waiting list and then dropped after 6 months so they could claim that nobody was on the waiting list for more than that period.
            You have my sympathy about the m-Eslon.
            Horrible stuff isn’t it? I couldn’t stop taking it fast enough after the op.

        • greywarshark

          This is a good subject for your grandstanding. You can always claim the high ground by going all emotional about the matter whenever commenters discuss it. What it means for the afflicted, young as well as old, when there is a budget just keeping up with minimal inflation and failing to meet needs based on population numbers, plus increased need from antibiotic failure, new organisms from overseas visitors, and RW desire to reduce taxes for the wealthy and run down services for everyone else.

          • alwyn

            I remember when I was studying Economics someone I knew did a study on what could be done with the money in the health budget. I was asked to check the numbers as they thought they must have made an arithmetic error.
            At that time, about 30 years ago, it would have cost more than New Zealand’s total health budget to treat, to the maximum possible extent, kidney disease. That was it, just kidney disease! There would have been nothing else to spend on all the other health needs of the country.
            With the best will in the world it is impossible to treat to the limit all the health needs of the country and why “rationing” is inevitable. I can only assume that the current situation is worse.
            That is why Thomas Carlyle had a grain of truth in his reference to Economics as being the dismal science.
            On the other hand don’t make him one of your heroes. He thought that Slavery was morally superior to a market economy.

    • tracey 18.3

      Except anecdotally she has a point, I have a friend who waited 4 years for his hip replacement, finally getting it last year ONCE the 8 panadol every 4 hours ceased to work on the pain.

      The other hip has needed replacing too. He is back on 8 panadol every 4 hours (and its resultant impact on his stomach) but it is no longe renough for him to be in pain at this dosage to get on the waiting list.

      • b waghorn 18.3.1

        My boss had lots of hip problems which led to him stacking the weight on the hips have been done but his knees are buggered and they won’t do them till he cuts his weight. How someone is supposed to lose weight when they can’t get around is beyond me.

        • tracey

          and then there is the depression from being in pain all the time and not being able to go anywhere, including the garden of your own home.

      • alwyn 18.3.2

        I think that your numbers are a trifle out. The maximum recommended dose of paracetamol (Panadol) is, I believe, 8 500mg tablets per day.
        You are quoting 48/day which seems unlikely. I’m am not a Doctor so don’t take that remark as gospel.

        • tracey

          Nope, that is the number. I stayed with him and helped him take the dose his GP told him to take. And it was 8 every 4 hours, which kinda makes Ms King’s point if you think about it… GP’s over prescribing drugs, beyond recommended doses? I wonder why they might do that alwyn?

          • alwyn

            As I say I’m not a doctor. It sounds awfully high though.
            I always thought it was 4000mg/day (usually 8 tablets)
            I never found it worked anyway. m-Eslon does but it leaves you feeling very strange and it is addictive I believe.
            I repeat. This is an uninformed opinion based solely on what worked for me. I am not recommending anything. Go see your doctor.

            • Colonial Viper

              permanent kidney failure is a major risk at these extremely high doses.

            • Tracey

              You mean he should go see the doctor who prescribed that dose because he doesn’t yet feel enough pain through the high doses to qualify for a hip replacement? That is the system you advocate he utilises?

              • alwyn

                No Tracey, I am not advocating anything at all.
                I was simply stating that the dose you said he was taking seemed to be very high. On the standard 500mg tablet size it would seem to be about 6 times the normal limit. I was surprised that that was what you nominated. I have no opinion at all on what the Doctor may have prescribed because I am not a doctor and I don’t know anything about the patient.

    • tracey 18.4

      If journalists checked claims before publishing Key would be a backbencher

    • North 18.5

      Hey Trollwyn……you still haven’t given us the link to verify your fantastical report of a couple of days ago of the Kelvin Davis / Paremoremo / Serco number. You got no balls Trollwyn ?

  18. Morrissey 19

    Paris and What Should Be Done
    by RON PAUL, November 17, 2015

    The horrific attacks in Paris on Friday have, predictably, led to much over-reaction and demands that we do more of the exact things that radicalize people and make them want to attack us. The French military wasted no time bombing Syria in retaliation for the attacks, though it is not known where exactly the attackers were from. Thousands of ISIS fighters in Syria are not Syrian, but came to Syria to overthrow the Assad government from a number of foreign countries — including from France and the US.

    Ironically, the overthrow of Assad has also been the goal of both the US and France since at least 2011.

    Because the US and its allies are essentially on the same side as ISIS and other groups – seeking the overthrow of Assad – many of the weapons they have sent to the more “moderate” factions also seeking Assad’s ouster have ended up in the hands of radicals. Moderate groups have joined more radical factions over and over, taking their US-provided training and weapons with them. Other moderate groups have been captured or killed, their US-provided weapons also going to the radicals. Thus the more radical factions have become better equipped and better trained, while occasionally being attacked by US or allied planes.

    Does anyone not believe this is a recipe for the kind of disaster we have now seen in Paris? The French in particular have been very active in arming even the more radical groups in Syria, as they push for more political influence in the region. Why do they still refuse to believe in the concept of blowback? Is it because the explanation that, “they hate us because we are free,” makes it easier to escalate abroad and crack down at home?

    It may not be popular to say this as emotions run high and calls ring out for more bombing in the Middle East, but there is another way to address the problem. There is an alternative to using more military intervention to address a problem that was caused by military intervention in the first place.

    That solution is to reject the militarists and isolationists. It is to finally reject the policy of using “regime change” to further perceived US and western foreign policy goals, whether in Iraq, Libya, Syria, or elsewhere. It is to reject the foolish idea that we can ship hundreds of millions of dollars worth of weapons to “moderates” in the Middle East and expect none of them to fall into the hands of radicals.

    More bombs will not solve the problems in the Middle East. But a more promising approach to the Middle East is currently under fire from the isolationists in Washington. The nuclear deal with Iran ends UN sanctions and opens that country to international trade. Just last week the presidents of France and Iran met to discuss a number of trade deals. Other countries have followed. Trade and respect for national sovereignty trumps violence, but Washington still doesn’t seem to get it. Most presidential candidates compete to thump the table loudest against any deal with Iran. They will use this attack to propagandize against approving trade with Iran even though Iran has condemned the attack and is also in the crosshairs of ISIS.

    Here is the alternative: Focus on trade and friendly relations, stop shipping weapons, abandon “regime change” and other manipulations, respect national sovereignty, and maintain a strong defense at home including protecting the borders from those who may seek to do us harm.

    We should abandon the failed policies of the past, before it’s too late.

  19. Grim 20

    In this web exclusive, Sean Stone sits down with Virginia state Senator Dick Black to talk about the ongoing crisis in Syria, and what policies the US and other world powers should adopt to return the region to peace and stability.

  20. Ovid 21

    RIP Jonah Lomu. A legendary sportsman and a great human being.

  21. Magisterium 22

    RIP Jonah 🙁

  22. esoteric pineapples 23

    Inappropriate stock photo of sexy female butt in jeans (if I can be so blunt) used to illustrate story about drycleaning worker who loses her employment case. Even names the worker in question. I don’t have a problem with the photo in itself. Just feel it is out of context for the nature of the story, particularly where the person is named.

    “A dry-cleaning worker who claimed she was told she could not wear pants to work and was criticised and threatened after rolling her eyes has lost her case against her former employer.”


  23. greywarshark 24

    “Rolls eyes!”

  24. esoteric pineapples 25

    Marijuana blamed for Paris bombings (sort of)

    “Paris terror attacks: Ex-wife of suicide bomber calls him a lazy pothead”


  25. Chooky 26

    Let the hacking war commence

    ‘#OpParis: Anonymous takes down 5,500 ISIS Twitter accounts’


    “Hacktivist group Anonymous has reported that more than 5,500 Twitter accounts belonging to Islamic State have been taken down. It comes after the collective declared a “total war” on the militant group following the Paris attacks…

  26. Grindlebottom 27

    Probably not the smartest idea in hindsight to call for one minute’s silence in Turkey.

  27. I’ll be on Vinny Eastwood’s who 5 pm NZ. We’ll talk about Paris, ISIS, False flags and how we know this is one too!

    • Chooky 28.1

      This is interesting too…will the Paris crisis be used by USA and friends ( Saudi Arabia , Israel) for further attacks on Assad ( undermining Russia) and eventually an attack on Iran?


      “As we all grieve for Paris in the wake of the horrific terrorist attacks, some very hard and painful questions must be addressed to what degree are the attacks in Paris blowback for Western meddling in the Middle East? And has the West’s war on terror only generated more terror?

      CrossTalking with Mark Sleboda, Dmitry Babich, and John Laughland.”


      “It is official – the Russian plane flying from Egypt was indeed a victim of terror. Who is really responsible remains unclear, nonetheless there can be no doubt much of the terrorism coming out of the Middle East has its origins in the West.CrossTalking with Alexander Mercouris, David Swanson, and Mohammad Marandi.”

  28. Grindlebottom 29

    Not enough notice. What about a summary?

  29. Morrissey 30

    Jeremy Corbyn: “Who’s funding ISIS? Who’s arming ISIS?”

    Why can’t our Labour leader speak as plainly and honestly as Corbyn does?

    • Expat 30.1

      Hi Morrissey, tell me the last time you saw a member of the media behave towards any labour representative the same as Jeremy’s interviewer did, this is example of unbiased journalism, which is what’s sadly missing in NZ, allowing people to have their say regardless of their own personal view point.

      Corbyn is a good man, I hope he is successful.

      • Rodel 30.1.1

        A good interviewer..as you say Expat, unbiased.
        Compare her professional manner to that of Hoskings, Gower, Henry and co.
        Also can’t help comparing Corbyn’s manner to Key’s.

  30. Expat 31

    I am curious to find out why so many left leaning bloggers are happy to bag the Labour party, they’re not the ones in power, and haven’t been for seven years, any body blaming them for anything has lost sight of the goal.

    There will never be a hard left wing govt in modern NZ, it’s economic suicide, and there will never be enough voters to support it any way, however, the current govt is a hard right wing govt, not centre as they would have you believe. For any person with any degree of compassion, empathy, and fairness for all, will disagree with the current direction NZ is heading, and that’s understandable.

    In todays modern society there are some basic fundamentals that we need to accept, commercial aspects of any economy require businesses, corporations and banks to help build the economy, right leaning govts tend to support this group through all sorts of law and policy changes, the sale public assets, that benefit them, and usually results in a poor outcome for society, to say the least, left leaning govts still need these businesses, banks and corporations to help build the economy but the crucial difference is recognising the need to have policies and laws that protect ordinary citizens and NZ’s long term interests while still allowing all these businesses, banks and corporations to operate profitably.

    If you want to see a change of govt, supporting “all” left leaning parties is mandatory, a lot of people don’t like labour, but without them, there is no one to fill the void, “some times you have to support the lesser of two evils” to at least get a step in the right direction, and changing the govt is the first step.

    For a coalition of left leaning parties to be successful, there needs to be a high level of cohesion and support for one another, no stupid criticisms on public TV, trust needs to be regained. Public support of each others policies that they are in agreement to, show NZ that there is another choice, a credible choice.

    But if you want to change the govt……

    • Anne 31.1

      Thank-you Expat for your sane, sensible comments. It’s a pleasure to read them.

      As far as the Labour knockers go, I think it has become a bit of a sport in NZ. I put it down to a lack of political maturity especially among our so-called political journalists and interviewers. The chances of a Labour leader in particular being treated with respect in NZ is low. More often than not they are continuously interrupted and shouted down by ego-centric interveiwers who are more interested in turning everything into a studio version of a bull-fight.

    • b waghorn 31.2

      My gut feeling on why some bag labour (including the odd journo ) is the frustration at the fact that a crooked little shister like key is in his third term and labour s issues are in no small way part of why.

    • Colonial Viper 31.3

      please explain why we should bother changing the National Government when the replacement one is 90% plus aligned with the National one?

      And I’m not the only one who thinks this way.

      ” In todays modern society there are some basic fundamentals that we need to accept, commercial aspects of any economy require businesses, corporations and banks to help build the economy”

      this is a nonsense.Transnational corporate power is destroying local economies and undermining sovereignty at every turn. It is the core rationale of the TPP.

      If you cant see that you are clearly part of the ruling establishment or its professional courtiers.

      • weka 31.3.1

        “when the replacement one is 90% plus aligned with the National one”

        Citation needed for that.

        • Colonial Viper

          why is a citation needed? Why not just trust your own eyes.

          voted for Nationals social welfare legislation.
          For Nationals spying and terrorism legislation.
          greenlight most of the TPPA
          greenlight oil and gas drilling
          keep blowing up the property bubble
          won’t enforce a living wage


          • weka

            I think the 90% is an exaggeration and minimises the distinct differences.

            • Colonial Viper

              please name four of those “distinct differences ” you say exists which are more than just tinkering on the edges. I cant think of them…

              • weka

                welfare reforms

                asset sales

                restoring Ecan


                Corporate manslaughter

                Living wage

                I’m sure I could pull a few more things off Labour’s policy page but that’ll do to start with.

                • Pat

                  think it is the economic model supporting everything that is the issue Weka…..what you have listed is that which is considered “at the edges” by those espousing a tangible difference between National and Labour.

                  • weka

                    That’s a bit academic Pat. I was taking it at the level of why should people bother voting Labour instead of National. The reason is that Labour have some actual good policies (despite not being left wing enough) and they will do far less damage than National. That Labour will still do some damage is not a good reason to vote National, that’s daft. Lesser of evils is not nothing.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Labour voted for National’s spying and anti-terror legislation.
                      Labour voted for National’s welfare reforms.

                      There is no daylight between National and Labour on those issues.

                      Labour talks about a living wage. Is Labour going to lift the minimum wage up to a minimum wage level? No, it is not.

                      Restoring ECAN – so what – that is tinkering.

                      Corporate manslaughter – has Labour drawn up a bill on this?

                      Asset sales – is Labour going to reverse an of National’s asset sales – no.

                      So sorry, your list is irrelevant or just tinkering or posturing.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      That Labour will still do some damage is not a good reason to vote National, that’s daft. Lesser of evils is not nothing.

                      Labour is part of the problem weka. And you know what the problem is – a slide into societal destruction via climate change, fossil fuel depletion and corporation led austerity.

                    • Pat

                      “academic” it may be Weka, but if you believe that the underlying cause of society’s ills is a fundamentally flawed model of course you would seek wholesale change for anything less would be perceived as having no impact on those things you seek to change….we can all go to hell at 90 mph or 100 mph ..either way were still heading for the same destination.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      BTW weka, thank you for pointing out those instances where people have been making up shit about me. You taking the time to do that is very much appreciated, cheers.

                    • Ad

                      Personally I’m looking for something more than that Weka.

                      I want someone to say that “this is the kind of country I want, and I have the courage to operate the instruments to achieve it.”

                      I want poverty eradicated as a goal, and housing for everyone, food on the table for families, cities that work, jobs for everyone, and I want a strong well funded state that can help everyone do that for generations to come.

                      I am so over abstract nouns about love, country, hope, vision, etc.

                      I want a political party with a plan. And I’ll start being interested in party politics again when I see that.

                    • Chris

                      It’s easy to be seduced by the argument that Labour’s the better of two evils but it’s not that simple. In a political system like ours where there’s two main parties and both of those parties are as good as the same in a number of key areas there’s no room for an alternative. It’s the cultural damage this causes which we should be worried about. When the thinking of a nation becomes so entrenched over generations. User pays in tertiary education is one example. Ask a student whether they think education should be free and they’ll look at you like you’re from another planet. Labour needs to start thinking about this kind of damage that’s caused by an ineffective opposition, rather than constantly looking to work out what to say to become the government. If Labour gets its values right first getting into government will follow.

                    • weka

                      ok, you all get that I’m a Green party member right? And I’ve been voting Green since they first stood for parliament. In regards the actual change needed, you’re trying to teach your grandmother to suck eggs here.

                      CV asks what’s the point of changing the govt when the two main parties are so similar. I guess he’s being rhetorical, but hey, I took the question at face value. I’m not making a case that Labour are doing the right things or that they’re going to radically change the way NZ is governed in the way that we all want They’re not. I’m saying that there are still significant differences between National and Labour (esp if we got a Labour/GP govt) that make it worthwhile voting on the left.

                      If we cede that bit of ground, as CV is apparently suggesting, the non-vote will increase, and we will have another term of NACT. Now if we had time, it could be argued that a 4th term could be galvanising to the left. Maybe Labour would finally collapse/split. Or another party would emerge. Or people would finally vote Green. But the whole point is we simply we don’t have time. AGW is here, now. We have a rapidly shrinking window to do the things to lessen the chance of runaway CC. I’m not saying that Labour will do those things. They won’t. I’m saying that the rest of us will have more of a chance under a left wing govt of shifting the culture so we all do those things. Government is not going to save us, we are going to lead the way and government will eventually get in behind. Thus as it ever was.

                      This is why the lesser of evils is significantly better. Even just to give activists some breathing space to refocus on what’s important instead of running round putting out fires all the time.

                      CV, you’re welcome. And I think your list of tinkering is wrongly characterised, if I get the chance later I’ll hash it out.

                • Expat

                  Hi Weka, What about human rights, to add to the list.

                  If C Viper thinks there is no difference between the main parties then he must have his head in the sand or been listening to the MSM, brainwashed by BS

                  Wake up NZ, there can be no change in direction without changing the govt, and getting rid of NZ’s most dishonest govt ever!

    • Tracey 31.4

      I’m curious to find out why a small number on here and in the Labour Party are happy to bag the Green Party because they are not the ones in power, and although never held Treasury benches have been able to implement some of their policies from outside that structure (both under Labour and the national Party). If you want to see a change of govt, supporting “all” left leaning parties is mandatory, a lot of people don’t like the Greens, but without them, there is no left government in any form base don current polling, “some times you have to support the lesser of two evils” to at least get a step in the right direction, and changing the govt is the first step.

      For a coalition of left leaning parties to be successful, there needs to be a high level of cohesion and support for one another, no stupid criticisms on public TV, trust needs to be regained. Public support of each others policies that they are in agreement to, show NZ that there is another choice, a credible choice.

      But only if you want to change the govt…… and if you want to see a different way of leading change rather than a harsher or smilier version of what we have had for too many decades, you will see the place the Greens have in NZ. As long as some in LP and here see the Green party as the enemy, national wins, again, and again, with short hiatus for a slightly right leaning LP

  31. Chooky 32

    +100…”For a coalition of left leaning parties to be successful, there needs to be a high level of cohesion and support for one another, no stupid criticisms on public TV, trust needs to be regained. Public support of each others policies that they are in agreement to, show NZ that there is another choice, a credible choice…”

    Thus far Labour and NZF seem to be supporting each other…but the Greens have been undercutting Labour and NZF…a decided turn off of former Green voters

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