Open mike 19/05/2019

Written By: - Date published: 7:00 am, May 19th, 2019 - 124 comments
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Open mike is your post.

For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).

Step up to the mike …

124 comments on “Open mike 19/05/2019 ”

  1. patricia bremner 1

    Australia is ignoring climate change, by continuing to support mining. Coal fired power stations and coal for China.
    There will be even more fires next summer.

    • Sabine 1.1

      honestly at this point we can assume that everyone is ignoring climate change.

      The little bit of investment in renewables is not to compat climate change but to future proof if at all that is actually possible.

      Aussie is doing what most of the world does. Nothing. Business as usual, lets not rock the boat.

    • Jenny - How to get there? 1.2

      Sabine 1.1
      19 May 2019 at 7:35 am
      honestly at this point we can assume that everyone is ignoring climate change……

      Not everyone.

      The real victory has been for someone prepared to go out in front on this issue.

      “We have a new beginning for our environment. I will be a climate leader for you.”

      Zali Steggall

      As I have said before, climate change will become the deciding issue in all elections. There is no middle ground on this issue. Those who spend their time looking for this middle ground are wasting their time.

      The issue is money, or the environment.

      Speaking of the role that climate change played in the overall Liberal Party victory Tony Abbot, in his own unique way, admits to the Liberals failing morally, but succeeding financially.

      “Where climate change is a moral issue, we Liberals do it tough. But where climate change is an economic issue, as a result, tonight shows we do very, very well.

      Tony Abbot.

      • Sabine 1.2.1

        when we the people stop looking for a leader and just start marching then we maybe have a chance.

        But i 'will' be a leader……damn it who ever this person is, why aren't you leading already.

        We have had decades of lipservice and i personally look at these people and all i see is someone who would not pass a KPI meeting at McDo but c an sprout platitudes and thus we are to elect them to parliament cause they say what some want to hear.

        if climate chance by now is not an issue then this planet is fucked already. It should have been an issue several decades ago.

        No people need to start leading themselves and then maybe the highly paid do nothing crowd in suits and taxpayer paid limousines will start doing something at last.

        • Jenny - How to get there?

          All politics is pressure

          We don't look for leaders, we create them.

          We create them with our actions on the ground.

          Cometh the hour, cometh the man/woman

          In a small way, the Greenpeace protest on the steps of parliament against the issuing of oil exploration permits, caused the Prime Minister to step aside in going to her scheduled meeting with the Indonesian Ambassador, to announce to the protesters that she would allow no new permits to be issued.

          In a big way, the massive grass roots protests against nuclear ships gave us the leadership to ban them.

          As of yet, we have not seen this sort of protest movement around climate change, but we may.

          If we build the movement, if we keep the pressure up, just as they have in the past, our leaders will rise to the occasion.

          • Sabine

            well the mass movement better start now cause we are already late.

            and for me the change will not come so as long as pulling boats up and down the country is still considered acceptable. I use the boat example as to me it is simply wasteful without purpose but cause havoc to the environment in so many ways and it happens without fault every weekend.

            but some like to wait others don't. But the one thing i never expect is a politician to lead. They don't ever lead. They only ever follow – and even then only kicking and screaming and this is the same for the larger population, Oz and US a shining example.
            . .

            • Drowsy M. Kram

              "But the one thing i never expect is a politician to lead. They don't ever lead. They only ever follow."

              I agree with that as a generalisation, but there are exceptions. Parliament voted in favour of Sue Bradford's 'anti-smacking' bill (by 113 votes to 8), and ignored the result of a subsequent citizens-iniated referendum that aimed to overturn the legislation. Angela Merkel's decision to accept large numbers of Syrian refugees might be another exception – you will have a better idea than me of whether that is an appropriate example.

              But you’re right, of course. In a democracy it's very difficult for the Government to take the lead on programmes that are unpopular, however necessary they might be. China’s ‘one child policy’ would never fly in India.

              • Sabine

                nope Andrea Merkle did nothing to special there,

                Germany has been accepting refugees for a long time now, I grew up in a very provincial town in bavaria with kurds, iranians, palestinians, vietnamese, chinese, south africans, syrians, iraquis to just name one. In this town you can get some excellent ethnic food btw. In saying that this will change. My generation will probably be the end of the World War 2 residue that feels that we might should be generous to others lest we allow a repeat of history, and we already did with the crimes against the muslim population in ex Yugoslavia. We stood by and did fuck all.

                What she did was to prevent a disaster that would otherwise have happened with people illegally entering the country and it costing more to the tax payer then allowing people in in an orderly fashion and being able to weed out those that might not be genuine.

                As for the 'anti smacking' law, i was here in the country and could not believe the brouhaha about it, seriously. I mean it is the least of things to do to not beat your children to death or into submission and that a law was needed for that kind of surprised me. What did not surprise me was the reaction of the Women and children are chattle crowd that insist in its right to 'train' their children as they see fit.

                And to finish, where is Sue Bradford now? ( i know as i follow her on FB).

            • Jenny - How to get there?

              “But the one thing i never expect is a politician to lead. They don’t ever lead.”


              Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, does.


    • Observer Tokoroa 1.3

      Yes: Patricia Bremner

      Burn Burn Burn

      The Australian people since birth have been brainwashed by right wing False Prophets – such as the miarculous Tony Abbott.

      In fact, Abbott appears to be Australia's only scientist. Which is to say that Australians Love Fire more than Life itself.

      But we must not be smug. We have thousands upon thousands of low order Flat Earthers and Zilch Climate hobos. Headed by Tauranga currently.

      • Robert Guyton 1.3.1

        "Which is to say that Australians Love Fire more than Life itself. "

        Makes you think, that…

      • Sabine 1.3.2

        But we must not be smug. We have thousands upon thousands of low order Flat Earthers and Zilch Climate hobos. Headed by Tauranga currently.

        so very true.

        • Sam

          The left lost another sitter again in Australia as it did in the UK and United States over the last 3 years and yet there is still zero critical examining of our own out of it'ness and why people just can't elect left wing governments, instead electing to blame everyone and everything else for our own shortcomings.

      • Jenny - How to get there? 1.3.3

        Sabine 1.3.2
        19 May 2019 at 8:12 am
        But we must not be smug. We have thousands upon thousands of low order Flat Earthers and Zilch Climate hobos. Headed by Tauranga currently…..

        Ironic then, that Tauranga is in the cross hairs of climate change, as the New Zealand city most likely to be flattened by an extreme weather event, before the turn of the century.

  2. The Chairman 2

    We've committed to an overhaul but we won't be raising benefits at this election – Carmel Sepuloni

    The left need far better representation. Shame on you Labour.

    • James 2.1

      Dont worry – it’s the year of delivery. Jacinda said so.

      • Sabine 2.1.1

        James, what is the margarine covered milk toast aka Mr. NO Bridges for Northland doing?

        Oh helping to create a christian support party?

        me thinks you protest much but support a party that is has no mates and does fuck all all day other then collect wages and drives around in taxpayer funded limousines.

        • James

          shows how little you know.

          You dont drive around round in a limousine- you get driven.


          • Robert Guyton

            "You don't drive around in a limousine"

            What, they drive themselves? Chauffeurs drive around in limousines, James.


            • James

              read the context of the conversation Robert.

              Normally your put downs / cheeky replies are the most clever of people here – but this one is a bit of a stretch.

          • Sabine

            oh damn,

            and we – the taxpayer pay the driver, right?

          • Gabby

            Jeez jimbo, you mean the lazy farquhar couldn't even be bothered driving?

    • Robert Guyton 2.2

      Eeyore and his pin-on tail!

      • Incognito 2.2.1

        The tail is wagging the donkey.

        • Poission

          Pigeon scrambling for crumbs.

          or as John Raulston Saul (unconscious civilization ) puts it.

          “The neo-conservatives, who are closely linked to the neo-corporatists, are rather different. They claim to be conservatives, when everything they stand for is a rejection of conservatism. They claim to present an alternate social model, when they are little more than the courtiers of the corporatist movement. Their agitation is filled with the bitterness and cynicism typical of courtiers who scramble for crumbs at the banquet tables of real power, but are always denied a proper chair.”

        • Robert Guyton

          Wagging – sp?

    • Sabine 2.3

      beneficiaries receive the heating allowance.

      beneficiaries now pay less going to the doctors.

      the children of beneficiaries can apply to Winz for driving lessons.

      while these measures are not a direct benefit increase they do increase the amount received considerably.

      so you might want to take that into account.

      • Kay 2.3.1

        @Sabine I'm not sure who you're replying to there, but you are aware that for most of us, that heating allowance is swallowed straight up into the rent. In the rare circumstances where one's rent isn't more that one's entire core benefit, eg those in State Housing, the extra few dollars a week for a few months a year gets earmarked for little luxuries like medications, necessary toiletries, food, money on the bus card, that sort of thing.

        So while of course it's better than nothing it's a token political gesture by a government that historically has already proven it has no concern about the well being of beneficiaries, it only pretends to. And rest assured, the SECOND the other crowd get back in, the heating allowance (at least for beneficiaries- it'll be too politically difficult for them to take it off the oldies) will be the first thing they scrap.

        • Sabine

          to the chairman.

          i don't care if if if………. my friends gets 20$ heating allowance. That is twenty dollars that other wise she would not have. It can go to rent, food, heating. She is still getting it.

          Her doctor visits are now 18 rather then 35. She needs to see a doctor often. the difference goes to food, rent, or heating, or toiletries. her choice.

          the fact is that any country only has so much money, that money comes from the working population, small businesses ( and only small businesses as our large businesses don't pay taxes or get money shoveled up their arses to bail them out when they fuck up – be they insurance companies or dairy milk extractors).

          So unless our government grows some spines and guts, and our population does the same you will always have the issue that there is only so much money to go around, and sadly our government has not got guts, and our population does not have guts either, or we would demand better not by hitting the streets but by opting out of the bullshit.

          My staff got a pay increase, not because they is doing better, not because i am doing better but because the government legislates it. and while i am happy for people to earn more money, at some stage i will look at my earnings and stop working, go on the dole as will my staff…….great ey?

          So you might actually just for a moment ask yourself who should pay for all that stuff that you would like to distribute and come up with a good plan cause the current lot as much as the last lot have got no plans.

          And this is why we can't have nice things. And this is why we have poor people.

          Because we don't want to tax businesses, we don't want a CGT we don't want to rock the boat.

          Laslty, i did not vote for Labour, as i saw no reason to vote for National light. I wasted my vote on the Greens to get no gummibears. Next time i will be voting for Legalise Aotearoa, as they are the only party that actually has prison reform in mind, will allow for people to use the herb for medicinal reasons without having to debase themselves before Chloe Swarbrook or people like Peter Fucking Dunne, and they will create jobs and raise the tax revenue, and maybe then, beneficiaries can have an increase in their weekly payments.

          • Kay

            Sabine, you are aware there has not been any real increase to the core benefit rates for over 2 decades now? Perhaps $1-2 a week every April 1st depending on the rate of inflation. In fact, for 3 years in a row recently we got exactly 0c. The largest increase has been a whole $5 a week that came with Bill's GST rise, he still thinks that was more than enough to compensate us for the price of everything going up by 2.5%. And everyone wonders why the MSD budget is blowing out on emergency hardship grants and Temporary Additional Support that is meant to be short term but so many of us now have to claim long term just to get by.

            Now let's also look at this from the general economy perspective. EVERY cent a beneficiary receives goes straight back into the economy. No Kiwisaver, no savings for an emergency. Landlords, power and telcos, transport companies, medical costs,supermarkets. And of course, 15% tax back via GST which is promptly recycled back into next weeks benefit. Plus, don't forget that for whatever reason, benefits are taxed, and what we get is net. And no, we don't get a refund. No idea how that works, but we are taxpayers too. Many beneficiaries also work part-time and are paying tax. It's a giant money go round.

            I once again bring up the basic cost/benefit consequences- why are our politicians- and by extension voters- so happy to keep us on starvation rations "because there isn't enough money" but somehow there's always enough money for the logical consequences of poverty, ie increased hospitalisations and costs to the criminal justice system?

            Back before our income slid so far backwards vs cost of living I could meet with a friend weekly at a cafe for a coffee, maybe something to eat. You know, a bit of normal life, but also support a local business. That stopped happening a long time ago. Multiply that small loss of business by many of us, and small business can- and do- go out of business. A coffee from McDonalds is much cheaper.

            I totally agree, we need a government that will grow a spine and get some guts but it's not going to happen. Our population is now so indoctrinated into believing we a) have a cushy lifestyle at their personal expense and b) we're all a bunch of lazy drug-addled scroungers, even sick and disabled and get a job. 30 years of divide and conquer has been highly successful.

            • The Chairman

              Thanks for your insightful input, Kay. To a large extent you're dead right.

              However, I disagree voters by and large support the status quo. Labour and the Greens both campaigned on poverty and fiscal management (pointing at the cost/benefit consequences you rightly highlighted) which a number on the right also acknowledge, thus understand the need for change.

              Additionally, if Labour did now what they have implied they plan to later do, we'd be on a far better path to achieving that change.

              Therefore, it's not voters that are holding them back. I believe the public support for change is there. It's our representation that is falling short and continually letting us down.

              A lot of traditional Labour supporters are losing faith due to Labour's continuing failure to deliver.

              The way Bryan Bruce has been talking of late, I wouldn't be too surprised if there was a hard hitting documentary coming soon holding Jacinda to account.

              • Robert Guyton

                Who knew a wet blanket could emit a doleful moan!

                • Incognito

                  We could build a water bottling plant on it!

                  • Robert Guyton

                    But is it water?

                    Seems more like sour grapes.

                    • greywarshark

                      It just needs a loving squeeze and the water that has made it soggy will drip away and lo the wonderful lightness of being.

                    • Robert Guyton


                    • Incognito

                      I’d be very concerned if we couldn’t find a market for it. It would be another failing of the Left to make good use of The Chairman.

                    • Robert Guyton

                      James'll take a barrel-full. That's one customer.

                    • Incognito

                      I was more hoping for an exporter.

                    • Sam

                      When deplomacy and war is unwise then a third option must be made available. We need a change in mindset from preventing climate change to managing the risks and risk arbitrage.

                      In in my opinion 3 key technologies will be vital in maintaining New Zealand's population with in 5 million to 10 million people. 1) is energy policy, 2) is communications technology and 3) transport technology. Research into new and advanced ultra light materials such as nano technology is rather slow so I doubt the chances of a revolutionary technology arriving in time to curb the 6th extinction event will materialise by the end of the century. So we have to swap out the motor pool and drive hard towards wind and solar farms while at the same time processing climate refuges while living with in population limits.

                    • Robert Guyton

                      " drive hard towards wind and solar farms "

                      Sam – might I recommend you watch the Susan Krumdieck clip at the top of today's "How to get there" thread – it's excellent! But sobering.

                    • Sam

                      To be perfectly honest I don’t care what level New Zealand’s population is stable at.

                    • greywarshark

                      To be perfectly honest Sam you are coming up with some good points, and we can add them to the ones churning round in the concrete mixer. We do need to keep the contents on the move so they don't settle into a hard to shift lump. But what about some steps to lighten the load?

                      Research into new and advanced ultra light materials such as nano technology is rather slow so I doubt the chances of a revolutionary technology arriving in time to curb the 6th extinction event will materialise

                      No use relying on every new technology. In a world where people are finding micro plastics at depths of thousands of feet in the ocean, adding nano technology bits is going to kill off even further animals. Think again.

                      When deplomacy and war is unwise then a third option must be made available. We need a change in mindset from preventing climate change to managing the risks and risk arbitrage.

                      In my opinion 3 key technologies will be vital in maintaining New Zealand's population with in 5 million to 10 million people.

                      Then you say at 2.10pm: To be perfectly honest I don’t care what level New Zealand’s population is stable at.

                      Why don't you come up with one doable small step to make things better instead of fretting about the big stuff. Tell us and then say how you are going to go about it. We don't need any more Nostrodamus prognostications, we need helpful, kindly action good for all. 'That's your mission Sam should you choose to accept it.'

                    • Sam

                      Its arguable that the fetus is apart of the woman so her choice really. I really couldn't careless what normal people get upto in there own time. I'v done more services to society and humanity. I'm perfectly fine with giving New Zealand my prime years from 25-35 and I'm fine with going down the other side on my own time.

              • Siobhan

                Some fair enough points there Chairman, with one quibble.

                "fiscal management (pointing at the cost/benefit consequences you rightly highlighted) which a number on the right also acknowledge, thus understand the need for change"

                There is no real change in fiscal management proposed. Or even 'implied'. Just some swapping deck chairs on the Titanic.

                All our Political Parties believe in Austerity Budgets.

                Sorry, 'Fiscal Responsibility.

                Yet as far as I know there has never been a radical change of direction and improvement in societal outcomes for all, without increased spending.

                Our leaders have sold this concept to most voters under the guise of 'Household Budget Balancing'. Which is ironic in a nation addicted to household dept through Mortgages.

                Also hilarious, as any home owner should know, to claim 'surpluses' by not maintaining the property let fixing any problems before they get out of hand.

          • cleangreen

            Welll said Sasha,

            “Laslty, i did not vote for Labour, as i saw no reason to vote for National light”

            How about voting for NZ First then?

            I opted tom vote for NZ First also as they are more gutsy and ready to introduce things like using the “reserve bank act” to print money, to do the same as all our big economic trading partners are?

            So by printing money to restore our “esssential infrustructure” makes prefect sense as Michael Joseph Savage did this post depression in 1937 as that is a better plan then just instead of selling our last public assets as is still happening all over this country now.

            Our Napier Port and Auckland port are next to go.

            When is the maddness going to stop.

            • Sabine

              nope. they are not gutsy, see CGT and Weed, not even a little

              these are two issues here in NZ that would have been fairly easy if anyone currently in government were actually concerned with bettering society rather then passing the KPI meeting at the election boot for another few years of grift.

              The one is that we don't want to take from the rich to to give to the poor.

              The second we have no issue locking our young, our maori/pacifica population, our men up for something to silly as weed, all the while meth is wreaking havoc and people are dying of synthetic weed – thanks Peter fucking Dunne.

              So i fail to see where they have guts.

              We need to get our prisons empty of people that actually do not 'crime'. I don't consider growing / possesing /using weed as a crime. but we not only here – but all over the civilised world cause tremendous harm with our stupid 'war on drugs/brown people' bullshit and do nothing and to boot we pay for the misery we cause. Billions of dollars to lock humans up in chicken cages with no way out once released.

              The money that we would save ….i mean think of it. At least half of our prisons would be empty, records could be cleaned up allowing a lot of men and women a chance to live life again properly, have careers, travel etc.

              But no. That would be going to far for the sensibilitys of some who would never ever go to prison if caught snorting cocaine of the backbench.

              CGT, we need to raise revenue to pay for stuff. But not like this. No surely there must be ways we can raise money from those that don't own houses and farms and businesses. Right? sure, Yeah, Tui.

              no guts, no glory, but hey they have jobs, get decent salaries and as James told me today we even pay for their drivers of the government issued limousines. Maybe there we could save some money, but then the dears in expensive suits n shoes would have to take their own car or gasp take the train, what would the world come to it if we had a government with guts rather then just 'feelgood' papers that amount to nothing.

      • The Chairman 2.3.2

        Energy payments are minimal. Moreover, short-term. Designed to meet winter increases in energy costs and not long-term daily costs/needs.

        Labour promised $8 GP visits, but only delivered on $18 visits, which was the same amount National offered.

        Not all beneficiaries have dependent children.

        Benefit rates are far too low and need increasing now. Labour are aware of this but refuse to rectify this with pace.

        • Sabine

          i don't dispute any of this.

          i just point out that despite all their faults they did a few things, and in the case of my friends it helped.

          that does not say its ok.

          but as i stated above, we need to come up with better plans than just distributing money that we take from others.

          one thing would be free healthcare so that instead of offering emergency care we start offering preventive care and thus reduce costs.

          At some stage someone has to do the math, and no i don't expet either National or Labor to do so. Cause the money – unless we start printing it – needs to come from somewhere and currently its the few that work and small to medium sized businesses that carry the burden.

          So what are your plans to increase the welfare for people? From whom would you take the money to distribute to the poor? And please consider that Labour is not going to to a CGT. And they are not going to decrim Weed to create a new agri business and revenue stream.

          So please one of you who constantly cries about how stuff ain't enough, please tell me where you are going to take the money from, and then tell me what the chances are that anyone at Labour/Greens/NZFirst had/has/and will have the guts, spine to push it through.

          Cause i – a cheap house homeowner, was all for the CGT.

          • Pat

            Theres the ever question, seldom answered……There are two responses to that I believe. First, the wherewithal must largely come from where its available (those with excess) and the second response is as you note, the will/ability lacks to implement it and not just from the politicians.

          • The Chairman


            When Little was leading the party, he pointed to the $20 billion military spend as a revenue source. Now we have Jacinda and all of a sudden there is no more money.

            Additionally, there was no need for her to totally drop the CGT. She could have put it to referendum.

            • Sam

              Why use defence money for something else?

              • The Chairman


                • Sam

                  and what would one of those priorities be?

                  • The Chairman

                    Vastly increasing benefit rates. The investment in this alone will produce savings largely across the board.

                    • Sam

                      assure me then that that extra top up will improve the conditions of New Zealand's most vulnerable and won't just go into subsidising the capitalists lifestyle.

                  • The Chairman

                    Are you questioning the capability of beneficiaries to spend the top ups wisely?

                    • Sam

                      Budget: $120 dole increased to let's be generous. $240

                      rent – landlord $200

                      food – Pak n Save $40

                      Did I miss anything? Now assure me that money will improve the living conditions of New Zealand's most vulnerable.

                    • The Chairman

                      It is largely agreed upon direct government transfers is the best way to improve the conditions of the most vulnerable.

                      Some will be just coping with those costs you mentioned, thus anything more will be of assistance. Others are living rough (in cars etc) so course more money will be of assistance.

                    • Sam

                      Well I'm not entirely sure even if we doubled benefits that that would significantly reduce the number of people living in cars.

                      Just fundamental for every unit of wealth there is at least one unit of inequality that everyone is willing to put up with, and neither can be zero. So my fear is that any increase in benefits will cause extra digits of inequality and Iv got Thomas Picketys book of research, Capital in The 21st Centruy to back up my claim.

                      Im not arguing that we shouldn't subsidise low wage work ect because I think we should. I just want to insure that we end subsidies to the already wealthy as well.

            • Incognito

              The accidental PM accidentally dropped the CGT, Chairman.

            • Nic the NZer

              Cutting elsewhere in the budget is largely irrelevant. The question is if bulstering beneficiaries budgets pushes the economy over a major inflation threshold (e.g beneficiaries buying up so much stuff that price rationing kicks in). That seems vanishingly unlikely so the government doesn't need to consider its budget position and a trade off for this decision.

              Of course this kind of budget focused decision making is exactly what is holding back left wing politics. Primarily by causing it to not deliver on election promises time and time again.

    • A 2.4

      This is as good as it gets

  3. A 3

    Rockland County, NY has just banned unvaccinated children from any public place (schools, churches, supermarkets, playgrounds….even walking down the street) for 30 days to either try and get ahead of the measles outbreak or coerce vaccination. This is much more extensive than the Seattle which has only banned the unvaccinated from schools.

    It is entirely predictable that the full public ban will be extended elsewhere, possibly indefinitely.

    • Sabine 3.1

      in the time of my youth, children with measels / rubella/ mumps etc and such were kept at home for 3+ weeks.

      They were quaranteed at home to prevent outbreaks, or issues for non vaccinated people and pregnant mothers.

      So yeah, don't vaccinate you kid if you don't believe in it for religious reasons, or because the science scares you or what ever. But keep these kids at home. I don't understand what is so hard about that.

      And in saying that, and i guess many that work in open plan offices that live through 5+ month of constant cold/flu going around because some workers choose to go to work sick, stay at home for at least three days. Sorry if you can't afford it, but maybe just maybe your co-worker who is not yet sick can't afford it either.

      In NZ if you run a food business and you or your staff have the runs longer for 24 hours you are forced to stay at home, you have to list that in a diary (food control plan) and come inspection time you actually have to produce that to the council person.

      Now why can't we expect that of people who don't vaccinated their kids or themselves?

    • One Two 3.2

      Rockland country issued the emergency declaration in March..

      It was overturned by the courts in April…and county appeal was then turned down.

  4. joe90 4

    A memorial day special from the POS who advocated torture and familial retribution.

  5. joe90 5

    Either take a punt on tRump having a get out of gaol free card, or go down with the ship.

    Straddling the fence isn't an option.

  6. Morrissey 6

    Two bimbos, a pompous ass and a cowardly "humanitarian consultant". These people are representative of New Zealand journalism?!?!?!?

    Just a few weeks after the dissenting journalist and free speech hero Julian Assange was forcefully dragged out of his place of asylum by British police, World Press Freedom Day was "celebrated" in Wellington earlier this month with a farcical event organized by the….(wait for it!!)…. British High Commission.

    Of course, New Zealand has many fine, decent, and brilliant journalists, politicians and academics. In spite of that fact, the British High Commission managed, with uncanny precision, to unearth the four worst people it could find in Wellington on that day.

    Anyway, for any masochists out there who want to watch this frightful performance, here's a brief rundown of the five worthies on your screen….

    On the LEFT is Nicola Young, one of the less distinguished National (i.e. Tory) MPs in this country. Her father, whose seat she inherited, was one of the less distinguished National MPs of the 1970s.

    SECOND FROM LEFT is Tova O'Brien, an undistinguished "political correspondent" who in several years of anodyne television appearances—I can't in all conscience call it reporting— has revealed only that she doesn't know much at all about politics either here or overseas. Note that her only response to the challenge of the young woman here is a winsome giggle.

    In the MIDDLE is the British High Commissioner Laura Clarke, who is without question the alpha male in this building. She exudes born-to-rule ascendancy, and the Kiwis on either side of her are in her thrall. She seems amused at Julian Assange's mistreatment.

    Squatting SECOND FROM RIGHT is a waste of space called Richard Harman, who is notorious in this country for the curmudgeonly expression on his face as he delivers his pompous and deeply reactionary views. Harman has been a figure of fun since election night 1981, when he was humiliated live on air by the Labour Party leader Bill Rowling. In this clip, it's Harman who cites that eminent scholar and unimpeachable authority Luke Harding. (Tova O'Brien no doubt has not even heard of Harding.)

    On the RIGHT is one Dr Andrew Ladley, billed grandly as a "humanitarian consultant" and "public lawyer." Oddly, he has nothing at all to say, but nods his head in agreement as Harman cites the "work" of Luke Harding.

    • greywarshark 6.1

      Oh Morrissey You are so scathing. I suspect all these people deserve such an honest and unbiased report on their work and background. Are you sure you are justified in letting them have both barrels like this?

      • Morrissey 6.1.1

        Not scathing, Mr Shark, accurate. I don't like having to point out that Richard Harman is a scoundrel and a liar, and that Andrew Ladley is a head-nodding coward, but they are facts.

    • francesca 6.2

      Well done that woman !

      Citing Harding!! as if he's an authority, when he's been disgraced with his Manafort rubbish

      Unbelievable , especially after Assange so recently received an award. For what?

      For journalism

    • Adrian Thornton 6.3

      Thanks for that link Morrissey, that is a very similar point I was (probably unsuccessfully no doubt) to make on Incognito's piece today 'Hate Speech Is an Evitable Evil', how can anyone really expect civil discourse to ever reign on the internet, when the establishment MSM itself is totally mired in it's own world half truths, lies and disinformation and the purveyors are so well rewarded? …when has Kim Hill ever let a counter narrative to Luke Harding have time on her show about Trump/Russia? or why hasn't she had Harding back on her show to explain what a bunch of bullshit his book ' Collusion ' turned out to be…it will never happen, so division and mistrust are further entrenched, and all the time enabled by a dysfunctional media, both here at home and abroad.

    • Gabby 6.4

      What's your point morsissey?

  7. OnceWasTim 7


    Paul Brennan's a decent sort of fella as well I have to say. I quite like it when the locums are in (Kim Hill on MR; Lynne Freeman on N2N; and elsewhere – just for a change in style)

    They should play swapsies a little more often

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

    • greywarshark 7.1

      OwT Yes there are good people in RadioNZ and good to hear them in different places FTTT. Ones i don't like I am probably rather biased.

      Do you have any feelings about Nicole McCarthy that you would like to share? Also I think that the afternoon guy Jesse Mulligan is pretty good. Do you know what Simon Mercep is doing now – he seemed to have been dumped unceremoniously and irrationally. What was the story do you know?

      • Morrissey 7.1.1

        Do you have any feelings about Nicole McCarthy that you would like to share?

        Don't know what Tim thinks of her, but here's what I feel about her: contempt. Here are two reasons why:

        Also I think that the afternoon guy Jesse Mulligan is pretty good.

        Really? You can't have been listening to him in October 2016….

        • greywarshark

          Jesse Mulligan the 2019 version is what I was thinking of.

          • Morrissey

            He was still as dismal and as ignorant as ever in early 2018.


            • greywarshark

              Gosh Morrissey I don't know that I can accept your review of Mr Mulligan, except that you are often dismal and ignorant yourself so would be a good judge of that in others.

              • Morrissey

                Really? When I start saying things like "some guy called John Philip Sousa" and "Sometimes when I read this stuff I get the sense that Russia are L-L-L-LOOKIN’ for trouble, are L-L-L-LOOKIN’ to create tension with the U.S.", your charge will have some merit.

                JIM MORA: That song sounds like “Burning Bridges”.
                JESSE MULLIGAN: Never heard of it.

                …Stunned silence….

                JIM MORA: From the movie Kelly’s Heroes.
                JESSE MULLIGAN: Nope.
                ZARA POTTS: I’ve never heard of it either.
                JESSE MULLIGAN: When did it come out?


                • bewildered

                  Jim Mora, Mike Hoskin, I love Putin and Assange, Shapiro…is an idiot, blah blah bloody blah, we get it Moz can you stop please now Its like a fkn broken record I don’t think we are holding out for your daily appraisal of news personalities, media outlets and commentators

            • Gabby

              Jessy's the Eternal Sixth Former.

              • greywarshark

                I never saw Kellys Heroes either. Retires in deep shame.

              • Rosemary McDonald


              • Morrissey

                bewildered: “I love Putin”, do I? And why have you connected Assange and Putin, as though they are a pair?

                Gabby: Sixth formers read insatiably—at least I did. I doubt that Jesse Mulligan did, or does now.

                greywarshark: Don't worry, my friend, I've never seen it either. The problem in Mulligan's case was that he had not HEARD of it, just like he had never encountered the name of J.P. Sousa.

      • OnceWasTim 7.1.2

        All I know is we have a public broadcaster that's struggling, and that there seems to be a few in there decision makers) that are buying into the cult of personality, of demographic targeting and audience share. It's not what PB should be about.

        (Incidentally – today's Media Watch, and the benefits of having staff representation on the Board – not a bad idea)

        It also seems there's been an intake of cadets lately – including on the technical side of things, and some decisions I think that have been a bit weird (like alex behan's departure from Music101.

        Other than that – people have their good days and their bad days.

        (I haven't yet read Morrisey's links but I'd not be surprised if they linked to suggestions of plagiarism and/or pretentiousness).

        Noel (for me) is increasingly tolerable, Jesse so-so (until the next time he claims 'old school status' and keeps the I I I me me me to a minimum)

        • Morrissey

          I haven't yet read Morrisey's links but I'd not be surprised if they linked to suggestions of plagiarism and/or pretentiousness.

          Read 'em, Tim! I don't think you'll find Noelle McCarthy tolerable at all, unless you think—like some on this board—that it's acceptable to laugh at the suffering of political prisoners, and to deride people like Vanessa Redgrave and Roger Waters for speaking up for the victims of mass murder.

  8. Sabine 9

    well i guess if abortion is murder, the the death penalty applies

    For the first time in state history, this week a Texas House committee held a public hearing on a bill that would allow criminal prosecution of women for their abortions.

    The bill currently makes all abortions a crime, with no exceptions. Prosecutors could even bring the charge of homicide for abortions, a crime that in Texas could carry a sentence of the death penalty.

    State Rep. Tony Tinderholt, a Republican, first introduced the bill in 2017, and again this year. The bill has many legislative hurdles to clear before becoming law, but this week's hearing marked the most progress yet by Tinderholt's proposal.

  9. Sabine 10

    this is funny

    In a letter sent Friday to Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, Kim Song — Pyongyang’s permanent representative at the UN — said the incident was “an unlawful and outrageous act”, according to North Korea’s state news agency KCNA.

    “This act of dispossession has clearly indicated that the United States is indeed a gangster country that does not care at all about international laws,” the letter said.

  10. Fireblade 12

    National MP Alfred Ngaro said abortion is "an unholy Holocaust in our nation".

    Jami-Lee Ross has slammed Ngaro's views.

  11. cleangreen 13

    Alfred Ngaro = National's new "divide the vote and rule campaign stategy".

  12. greywarshark 14

    Immigration – how many people can NZ contain and still have a decent society?

    Shamubeel Eaqub: Population strategy needed – In 2016.

    (Have we a reasonable population strategy now in 2019.)

    New Zealand has no clearly articulated population strategy: we do not know how big a population we want, or why and how to manage migration to get there….

    We are also addicted to population growth to pay for unfunded fiscal promises like universal health and super that cannot be paid for with a dwindling pool of taxpayers.

    What did the Greens say in October 2008?

    Greens' family policy slammed

    In 2018 – (Some good graphs here at site.)

    On google under Population control in New Zealand the items soon pass onto tahr and rabbit control. It seems there is not a lively discussion on it.

    Scoop shows a good item on population in NZ, 7 Feb 2019 from Stats NZ. It refers to change in defining migration numbers.

    The latest provisional estimate of annual migration in the year ended November 2018 was 43,400, plus or minus 1,500. This was the first official release of estimates using the ‘outcomes-based’ measure, which replaces the previous ‘intentions-based’ method of measuring migration, which it has replaced (see Net migration trending down).

    The outcomes-based measure is a more accurate measure of migration than the intentions-based measure. This accuracy will flow through into other data uses, including official population estimates. (see Planned revisions below).

  13. Morrissey 15

    Surely TVNZ can find someone better than Mark Crysell

    Watching a piece on TVNZ1 right now about the stresses of teaching. Unfortunately the presenter is Mark Crysell….

  14. Jenny - How to get there? 16

    The real winner of the Australian elections was BAU on the climate.

    Scott Morrison finds the fabled 'middle ground' on climate change.

    "He was able to straddle the Queensland pro-coal folk and also those who are a bit more for renewables and the like. He locked in the base, but the more progressive elements didn't see him as King Canute in the way [former prime minister Tony] Abbott was."

    But there is no middle ground on climate change. Scott Morrison policy on climate change is really business as usual.

    But unfortunately business as usual on the climate is not tenable in Australia, which is posited by scientists to be one of the worst hit of all countries.

    What this means, is that the instability in Australian politics will continue, and Scott Morrison's tenure as Australia's Prime Minister is likely to be very short.

    The first real crisis for Morrison's administration will be over Adani, just as it would have been for a Bill Shorten administration. Because Labor just like the liberals were pretty much in support of this mega coal mine project.

  15. Jenny - How to get there? 17

    The real winner of the Australian elections was BAU on the climate.

    Scott Morrison finds the fabled 'middle ground' on climate change.

    "He was able to straddle the Queensland pro-coal folk and also those who are a bit more for renewables and the like. He locked in the base, but the more progressive elements didn't see him as King Canute in the way [former prime minister Tony] Abbott was."

    But there is no middle ground on climate change. Scott Morrison policy on climate change is really business as usual.

    But unfortunately business as usual on the climate is not tenable in Australia, which is posited by scientists to be one of the worst hit of all countries.

    What this means, is that the instability in Australian politics will continue, and Scott Morrison's tenure as Australia's Prime Minister is likely to be very short.

    The last six Australian Prime Ministers were rolled from their position by inner party turmoil in disputes over climate change.

    This situation has not changed.

    The first real climate change crisis for Morrison's administration, will be over Adani, just as it would have been for a Bill Shorten administration. Because Labor just like the liberals were pretty much in support of this mega coal mine project.

  16. Some Eco Maori Music for the minute.

  17. Kia ora The AM Show.

    Its a unusual phenomenon all the strike that happened when Labour is in power.

    The Pike River mine reentry is today that is cool te tangata will be happy.

    Well Mark I agree with that statement. The All Blacks are Rugby.

    There is a real power imbalance between all employees and employers with under 20 employees with the 90 day sack at a wim employment laws not just people who work in parliament.

    You would think that mental trauma should be covered by ACC I say because it's a injury that can't be seen and is quite common ACC not covering it is just a easy cop out to save $$$$.

    Its te tangata te tangata if we make our retirement policies to hard for new residents then we will will end up with a section of our society in hardship and the kaumatua are already vanurable. Change is needed because some take advantage of our soft retirement laws for new residents it's just needs to be balanced.

    Social media is a worry Graham you have to sift through the bullshit and find the truth not many people have those SKILLS. I don't do photos everything I do is public knowledge

    I agree all tamariki should have a plan set in pohatu for trades or any good skill start at schools to set them up for LIFE.


  18. Some Eco Maori Music for the minute.

  19. Eco Maori 21

    People do need to learn to be critical thinkers information is the same as Tangata don't trust it verbal or data unless you can verify it. Its the same as Tangata don't trust them unless you know you can trust them. I say a bit of shady stuff being going down with the right neck winning power when the polls show there opposition was in a winning position. The right neck are dirty cheats.

    Artist Jessica Savage Broer photoshopped this image to include President Donald Trump. She said she wanted to make the point that people need to use critical thinking skills.


    Artist Jessica Savage Broer photoshopped this image to include President Donald Trump. She said she wanted to make the point that people need to use critical thinking skills

    Ka kite ano links below

  20. Eco Maori 22

    Here is one reason why the leftys lost in Australia there is another Eco Maori can't say as it right up there with the worst behaviour seen in the last decade.

    One thing that has been so far underplayed is News Corp’s newspaper monopoly throughout the region. Those newspapers have mounted a sustained propaganda campaign in favour of the new mine. On the reef coast they have downplayed the damage to the Great Barrier Reef owing to the climate crisis. And if anyone can be blamed for turning Bob Brown’s visit into a harbinger of doom, it’s these papers Ka kite ano links below.

  21. Eco Maori 23

    Kia ora Newshub.

    With Parliament staff problems it all boils down to Mps not being held accountable for there actions that's when the scab fester and turn into a big mess.

    Its sad that Gloria has to have police guard her in NZ the redneck rising out of the dirt we all know who has impowered them.

    When people flee the police they are out of control if they were in control they would not flee don't chance them.

    My HUAWEI phone is going good this is a minor hick up I sure they will have their own backup system in place. . Ka kite ano

  22. Eco Maori 24

    Kia ora Te ao Maori News.

    I have commented on the subject of Parliament staff I did not realise how bad it was now that the bad behaviour has been exposed it can be cleaned up.

    Its good that more funding is going to the ambulance free service.

    Awatea Mita Kia kaha I Tau toko you in your championing Prisoners rights Yes a lot of our prisoners are vulnerable for 1 they would not be there 2 they have a hard time navigateing the system as it changes so fast if you are in jail for 5 years unless you have someone who's got your back when you get out your stuffed

    Yes The true Maori story of our history need to be heard from Maori and not just the European point of view.

    Passenger trains from Waikato to Auckland is great that will lower Aotearoa carbon footprint.

    Ka kite ano P.S I need to get my hard ware sorted

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