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Open mike 19/01/2015

Written By: - Date published: 6:23 am, January 19th, 2015 - 193 comments
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193 comments on “Open mike 19/01/2015 ”

  1. Paul 1

    The Super Rich and Us
    BBC episode 2

    You can probably also get on you tube.
    Well worth a watch.
    Although focused on the UK, much of the information, analysis and conclusions can be applied to New Zealand.

    Would love to discuss with anyone who has watched both episodes.

    • Olwyn 1.1

      I have not seen that show, but did you see this piece about some of our own young-and-wealthy in NZ? The writer seems to be pointing to a kind of social-life stratification that has arisen with the growth of inequality:


      • Olwyn 1.2.1

        Thanks rhinocrates 🙂 I will watch the first episode tonight.

        • greywarshark

          Looking at a zine insert in an old Press. Promotion for designer clothes and bags. Practical handbag Karen Walker $605, Printed silk shirt $290, Patent loafer shoes $300. $529 day dress, Designer jacket $580, Skirt with full length slanted Zip $300.

          Cripes. Frankie went to Hollywood, came home and instituted the sort of economic principles that enable them to have Rodeo Drive, Beverly Hills where if you have to ask the price you can’t afford it! So I’m told.

          • Olwyn

            Frankie went to Hollywood, came home and instituted the sort of economic principles that enable them to have Rodeo Drive…

            Well said! 😀 Someone said in this morning’s Herald,”We’ve got houses more expensive than LA. How is this possible? A dump in Pt Chevalier demands a million dollars, which gets you a mansion in Beverly Hills.”


            In our case, the Pt Chev dump was $100,000 not all that long ago. Now the rent generated by a string of them keeps certain little princesses in private schools and patent leather loafers. While keeping others, of course, in a state penury and chronic anxiety.

    • gsays 1.3

      hi paul,
      i have got thru nearly 7 nmins of the first episode and i feel like showering.

      without knowing what happens next, i am goiong to throw in my two cents.

      change imo, will not come from wellington.
      also i will not look to wellington for leadership. i do still vote etc, but have little or no faith in the politicians for change.

      i am at the point of acting and behaving in the way i want things to be.
      this, to me, simply means sharing.
      sharing food, time, resources, love, enthusiasm, forgiveness.
      now i dont mean lets all sing kumbayah, and every thing will be ok, but modelling this behaviour or example shows others an alternative.

      grow a garden and share the surplus.
      volunteer some time at a community level- scouts, op-shops, spca, community gardens, community law, reading recovery at yr local school.
      i firmly believe that the young are the key to any fruitful change.

      getting with some mates and give up a morning a week doing projects at someones home, and moving round the group.

      perhaps advocate at local council level and get cabbges, brocolli, lettuce, orchard trees growing where annuals would normally be.

      i am going to stop here as i may have gone off on the wrong tangent.

      what say you?

  2. Pete George 2

    It looked a bit like Whale Oil may have been up to their old tricks of blogging for hire after a post under Slater’s name reversed recent support of Uber and instead backing the “hard working taxi drivers” and taxi companies.

    Curious – Whale Oil versus Uber post sounded like un-Slater-like language.

    And since then it gets more curious as comments denying payment from taxi companies have now quietly disappeared.

    This could mean nothing apart from being curious. Or it could be that Slater is still a hired gun as detailed in ‘Dirty Politics’.

    More curious – Whale Oil versus Uber smells dirty

    • good spotting..

      ..i wd have headlined it..’whale u-turns – slimes uber in process’…

      • Pete George 2.1.1

        A bit ironic after you accused me of copy/pasting Slater/Ede yesterday.

        • phillip ure

          you can’t even take a compliment with a modicum of grace..

          ..can you..?..you silly little whining-man..

          ..and are u telling us u have never copy/pasted from slater..?

          ..i don’t fucken believe you..

    • tracey 2.2

      Interesting indeed but why anyone would think Slater or those that lurk behind him in the shadows, have changed are barking mad. They suffered no consequences, so have no reason to grow any ethics.

      • Pete George 2.2.1

        They are suffering consequences, which could be fairly consequential while they try to support an expensive blog and at the same time trying to launch a $million plus new media enterprise. The reality seems to be that they still rely on their sworn enemy, the supposedly dying old MSM.

        The current state of consequences: When credibility has crumbled…

        • mickysavage

          I will piss some people off for saying this but I would like to commend Pete for following up this story. Every time I saw a “Concrete Cancer Coverup” post my first thought was who is paying Slater to say this.

          The difference between TS and Whaleoil is that we will just rock on without income because we blog for fun whereas on his side it is a business and if he does not live up to the financials the shareholders will be disappointed …

          • Te Reo Putake

            Stopped clock, MS.

            It’s just a shame Pete’s too busy writing the follow up post to his innocently and totally unintentionally racist dog whistle about aoteroa/new zealand to comment more. You are writing that post, aren’t you Pete? You promised, remember? Y’know, the one where you discover that on being outed as a racist you suddenly realised you really love te reo and maaaris and why can’t we all get along?

            In the meantime, here’s a song:

            • Pete George

              I remember, Patience TRP. Things have gotten busy for me. I’ll post that when the time is right for me.

              It’s a shame you have to keep resorting to unreasonable rants. It makes you look like little more than a pissy prick. I’m not sure what you’re trying to achieve.

              Here’s something else in the meantime – The soft and loud of “Pākehā”

    • millsy 2.3

      It wouldnt suprise me. But I thought he would be more of an Uber man…?

  3. “..Mitt Romney’s Re-Invention As Anti-Poverty Warrior..”

    (ed:..romney is clearly borrowing from the john key playbook..eh..?..)

    ..remember how key pretended to care for the poor..?

    ..to get elected..?

    ..remember how he visited that ‘poor-street’..?

    ..and then he took that ‘poor-child’ to waitangi..?

    ..held her hand..?

    ..and the whole nation went:..’awww!!..he cares..!’..”



    • disturbed 3.1

      Well spotted Phillip,

      I watched Obama today on TV and he was sounding very much like Key also in his defence of pressing for widespread surveillance.

      Key must be coaching both sides during golf?

      Key wont choose any side as he is a sly fox and knows he then can work with whom wins the next US election, if he is still around or if not he will set up in US again and work with them there.

      Key is not a Kiwi any more, he is anybody who is super rich or powerful to be their puppeteer.

  4. vto 4


    Sheesh, not a good look for DOC, not a good look for the new silly Conservation Minister Maggie Barry, not a good look for 1080 supporters, and certainly not a good look for the wee birds…

    1080 is surely in the same position as 245T was, formaldehyde was, atomic testing was, asbestos was, the list goes on …..

    The government assures us 1080 doesn’t do the things this article indicates.
    The government assured us the same thing with the rest of the list.

    The evidence and the history is in when it comes to the NZ government and its credibility in such circumstances …………

    And it is also noted that it seems most people in the areas where 1080 is used most (except farmers who have an ulterior motive – Tb) oppose 1080. Plus the Ban-1080 Party got more votes than Peter Dunne in the election.

    • weka 4.1

      Not sure that article makes sense.

      Before Christmas the Department of Conservation (DOC) said it could not find 25 rare and endangered rock wren in the Grange Range of the Tasman Wilderness Area in Kahurangi National Park, which was subject to a 1080 drop for the first time in October.

      In answers to Official Information Act questions from Golden Bay 1080 opponent Bill Wallace, DOC said it had identified 39 rock wren that lived at the site.

      DOC Westport conservation services manager Bob Dickson said that of the 39 birds, 30 were sighted directly after the operation but only 14 had been found later.

      1. 39 birds before drop

      2. 30 birds at some undetermined time after drop

      3. 14 birds later still

      4. heavy snow but it’s unclear whether that was before the 14 birds or after

      5. no birds after heavy snow

      6. DOC intentionally used that site as part of the drop to see how rock wrens would stand up to 1080. This means there should be some actual research to OIA at some point, which is good. Hopefully the anti-1080 people will do that and publish it online.

      “The government assures us 1080 doesn’t do the things this article indicates.”

      DOC know that there is a bykill with 1080 drops, it’s clear from the article. Anyone got a doable alternative to 1080 yet?

      “1080 is surely in the same position as 245T was, formaldehyde was, atomic testing was, asbestos was, the list goes on”

      I think there are good reasons to oppose 1080 but that list isn’t one of them. 1080 has obvious immediate effects, and probably has some residual toxicity effects, but it doesn’t have the long term toxicity effects of the poisons you list. I get why you made the list but I think it confused the issue (mixing up toxicity with the value of hindsight about badly used/damaging technology)

      • vto 4.1.1

        Yes the reason for the list was pretty clear I think.

        It seems to me, from reading various and from being on the ground in regions subjected to 1080 and speaking to hunters, trappers and the like, that 1080 has limited effect. In order to close out those limits the most common suggestion from those on the ground is follow-up with heavy trapping programmes over a sustained period.

        Another weapon in the battle is the looming explosion in self-setting traps. This could be the final solution, of sorts.

        Anything to get away from the random saturation of untrustworthy chemicals (NZ the only place that hasn’t banned 1080), especially in light of that list and the lack of trust we can put in governmental decrees when it comes to chemical like this ……..

        Another weapon would be a Conservation Minister who has a clue. Any clue. Maggie Barry … pffft, shamefully useless

        • Paul

          Barry’s qualification is her garden show.
          What a joke!

          • vto

            Yes. Maggie Barry as Conservation Minister is an absolute joke. Mind you – who else in the right wing Nat government would have a clue in this area – all concerned with irrigation, oil, roads and colonial-type expansion as they are?

            A newpaper, the Press I think, a couple of months ago put a series of basic conservation questions to Barry and to the Labour person Ruth Dyson…

            … Barry outright refused to answer due to her absolute cluelessness. Dyson answered all very well.

            Sums up the difference

            • Kiwiri - Raided of the Last Shark

              The greatest strength of Maggie Barry in that portfolio is that she reinforces National’s “con” in conservation.

          • phillip ure

            and she has perfected that school-marm voice..

            ..(and as she told/reminded us all..she has given birth..

            ..and this gives her an edge over women who have not birthed – so she told us..)

            ..i can’t think of any other qualifications..

          • Bearded Git

            On the contrary this is an excellent appointment Paul. She will look and act like an idiot and the government’s image will suffer.

            • vto

              Hmmmmm, I imagine that she will not act like an idiot – she will avoid any such risk. She will keep her ineptitude well hidden behind smiles, empty blather, and gardening shows of the past. This will be enough to satisfy many…. unfortunately

        • weka

          Fair enough vto. I agree ground control and R and D into trapping is a good way to go. I’d like to see the anti-1080 lobby get organised and do the research and start putting some trials into practice. I know lots of people and organisations do trapping already but it’s hapazard and afaik no-one is collating research. If we want to convince the govt and DOC, they’ll have to have the numbers to back it all up.

      • Draco T Bastard 4.1.2

        DOC know that there is a bykill with 1080 drops, it’s clear from the article. Anyone got a doable alternative to 1080 yet?

        No, they don’t. Although, in a few years, once we come to the end of being able to fly large aircraft, the question will become moot and we’ll have to deal with a collapsing natural environment as the possums, rats and stoats kill everything.

        • weka

          Another good reason to kickstart a groundbased industry now.

        • Bearded Git

          1. 1080 has been used for 40(?) years and simply doesn’t work except in the very short term. The 1080 industry (chemical companies, companies with cushy contracts to spread it, DOC bureaucracy) perpetuate the myth that it works.
          2. There is evidence, and increasing anecdotal evidence, that native birds, notably Kea and Rock Wren, are being killed in large numbers by 1080.
          3. The alternative is already out there. That is the mass use of increasingly sophisticated multi-kill traps and predator free fences over large and slowly expanding areas of bush. (Many areas will have to be abandoned to their fate at least for now)

          In order for 3 to work all of the money spent on 1080 and additional funding, perhaps say $50 million a year, is needed, but it would be money well spent and would create some jobs.

          • greywarshark

            @ Bearded Git
            I understood that Doc were already only using 1080 in inaccessible areas. I don’t see why they should be abandoned to their fate for now.

            But the new traps and the interest there would be in kaitiaki of the native birds – setting traps, getting possums for fur, and looking after the areas they live in, which would involve clearing vines etc, by experienced fit bushmen and women, would be a valuable task for the country and provide work for these capable and skilled people.

            1080 could become a very rare thing. But surely it has been shown by data collected, monitoring to have been beneficial even if some birds and animals have been collateral damage?

            • Karen

              There is no alternative to 1080 in many wilderness areas of NZ, and the idea of abandoning the native species in these area to their fate is appalling.
              I suggest that all those who think there is an alternative should first read the comprehensive study undertook by the Commissioner for the Environment Jan Wrightson.


              • disturbed


                PCE is Jan Wright, not Wrightson.

              • weka

                “There is no alternative to 1080 in many wilderness areas of NZ”

                But there are alternatives in many areas where 1080 is being rolled out. It now routinely gets used in places that are accessible to other methods (and not just DOC land, it’s being use for rabbit control on private property now too).

                A big part of the reason for the increase, and the reason for DOC not using other methods is funding. Another part is philosophy.

                TARA not TINA 😉

                “There is no alternative to 1080 in many wilderness areas of NZ”

                Why? Can you please point to the bit in the report that supports the reasons?

                • Karen

                  Read Jan Wright’s report.

                  • weka

                    Does that mean you can’t tell me why you believe there are no alternatives? One sentence would be fine (eg terrain too rugged). Otherwise you really have just done a TINA.

                    • Karen

                      You’re smarter than that Weka. Do a bit of research yourself.

                      Rugged terrain is one part of it, also huge areas of wilderness are a long way away from population centres. The need to set then check and reset traps at regular intervals in accessible areas is difficult enough without looking at the vast number of areas that are extremely difficult and dangerous to access. The problem is immense and getting worse.

                    • weka

                      Here’s the thing. I know about trapping from talking to people who do it for a living or do it as voluntary work. I also know about rugged terrain. What I don’t know is what you think. I started to read the 85 page document you suggested and then I realised it’s not something I need or want to read right now and I was only reading it to understand what you meant. I do however want to know what you meant. Me doing my own research is asking you to clarify. Thanks.

                      I disagree that there are no alternatives in many wilderness places. I think that 1080 is probably the best option currently in select places, but I know that DOC use and are intending to use it in many places that could be managed in other ways.

                      People go into these difficult places all the time. The difficult strategy argument is a red herring IMO, not because it’s not true at all, but because it’s overstated and bandied around as an escape clause.

                      I would have more respect for the pro-1080 people if they were just honest and said this is about money and what we can do now without having to set up a whole raft of systems that we would have less direct control over (yes, DOC would have to develop relationships with trappers and others, including local groups, and learn how to manage and maintain those relationships).

                      “The need to set then check and reset traps at regular intervals”

                      Do you know much about trapping possum for fur? Trappers put out a line, and then they have to go back and check the line the next day. These are techniques that are already being done. I think DOC check their stoat lines once a month (more often would be better, but I gather that’s a cost/benefit ratio they’ve worked out).

                    • Murray Rawshark

                      NAct’s alternative would be to build private toll roads in wilderness areas, because we all know heaps of possums get run over.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      I know about trapping from talking to people who do it for a living or do it as voluntary work.

                      In other words, you know practically nothing about it. Here’s the thing – neither do the trappers that you talked to. Anecdotes do not make up sufficient data to make decisions on and opinion is even worse.

                      People go into these difficult places all the time.

                      1. That doesn’t mean that they can be effectively trapped
                      2. [citation needed]

                      People went to Rangitoto all the time as well and it still took a 1080 drop to clear off the opossums and wallabies.

                      I would have more respect for the pro-1080 people if they were just honest and said this is about money

                      But it’s not about money. It’s about the resources necessary to trap the entirety of NZ. Sure, we measure that, imperfectly, using money but that doesn’t make it about money.

                    • weka

                      “I know about trapping from talking to people who do it for a living or do it as voluntary work.”

                      In other words, you know practically nothing about it. Here’s the thing – neither do the trappers that you talked to. Anecdotes do not make up sufficient data to make decisions on and opinion is even worse.

                      Stop being a fuckwit Draco. My statements were clearly in response to Karen and weren’t implying that the experiences of those hunters shold be used for DOC to make decisions on. You just made that shit up and dumped it on my argument. Try reading and listening and asking for clarifiation instead of this stupid shit argument.

                      Hunters know a lot. A lot. They spend huge amounts of time at the coal face. Suggesting they practically nothing just demonstrates your ignorance and pretty much makes your opinions on this topic abstract armchair ones.

                      “People go into these difficult places all the time.”

                      1. That doesn’t mean that they can be effectively trapped

                      Well, the places that people are effectively trapping already suggests otherwise.

                      2. [citation needed]

                      If you really don’t understand this, I suggest looking at material from tramping clubs, alpine clubs, tourism (esp helicopter-based), botanists, geologists, University field workers, road contracters, hunters and fishermen.

                      You will of course be missing out on the huge amount of experience-based knowledge that’s a primary source, but whatever.

                      People went to Rangitoto all the time as well and it still took a 1080 drop to clear off the opossums and wallabies.

                      How fascinating. Just as well I didn’t suggest that all that was needed was people going into places all the time. If you actually got off whatever shit you have going on in your head and read what I am saying intelligently you would see that several times now I have stated that if the anti-1080 crowd want govt policy to change, they need to to the trials to prove that other methods will work.

                      “I would have more respect for the pro-1080 people if they were just honest and said this is about money”

                      But it’s not about money. It’s about the resources necessary to trap the entirety of NZ. Sure, we measure that, imperfectly, using money but that doesn’t make it about money.

                      THanks for that bit of pedantry, that’s really helped me understand why you would even bother talking to me.

            • Bearded Git

              good points grey.

              Like everyone else I’m looking for the magic bullet that solves the problem long-term because I hate tramping in quiet forests.

              Maybe a combination of my traps and predator proof fences, very selective 1080 and MORE MONEY could help sort it while investing in research in better and better traps.

              • greywarshark

                @ Bearded Git
                I wish. If only we could get a government that actually wanted that as being a good thing in a good, well run country for all of us.

                By the way thinking of bird noise. If you know could you advise – what is the bird that sings two upward notes followed by two downward – and it might then add another couple of upward notes.

          • Draco T Bastard

            1. True. That’s why it’s spread at about the time the targeted species are reproducing to maximise that effect.
            2. They are being killed by 1080. No one disputes that. What is in dispute is how many native species would be killed if we didn’t use 1080. Most reliable estimates indicate that many native species would have been wiped out decades ago if we hadn’t been using 1080.
            3. That would be most areas would be left to their fate for now resulting in the eradication of many native species. You obviously haven’t considered the actual physical requirements of getting those systems out and keeping them maintained.

      • gsays 4.1.3

        hi tracey,
        “DOC know that there is a bykill with 1080 drops, it’s clear from the article. Anyone got a doable alternative to 1080 yet?”

        yes. turn the problem into an asset, by that i mean a bounty of $1 a oppussum ear. if thaty doesnt work make it $2, $3, etc.
        petfood, pelts, fur.

        take the youth into the bush, teach them bush, lifecraft, hunting skills. give them a good sense of self and independence.

        personally 1080 is an absolute abhorrance, a horrifically cruel and inhuman way for any creature to die.

        i am surprised phil ure is not more vocal on this.

        • weka

          Yep all that 🙂 If we want that to happen someone is going to have to do the legwork on trialing systems to prove they work.

          • Karen

            If you can’t be bothered reading Jan Wright’s research maybe just look at Forest and Bird’s Q & A about 1080.

            But really, you should put some effort into being better informed.

            • weka

              Well I appear to be better informed than you Karen, or at least I’m participating in this conversation with more good faith than you. I’ve asked you above to clarify your statement that TINA to 1080 in many places. You haven’t, you’ve just posted links to organisations that support your belief.

              And fuck off with the slur on can’t be bothered/should be better informed. It’s an 85 page document for god’s sake. I have no idea why you wouldn’t just explain your beliefs.

              • Karen

                I have referred you to Jan Wright’s report because it is a comprehensive piece of research that expleins why we still need to use 1080. This is a complex issue, so it required a complex report. I referred to this research as I believed you actually wanted to understand the problem.

                As you were unwilling to read it I then referred to Forest and Bird’s Q&A on 1080. This is short and written by the people who do much of the trapping in this country. I find your response disappointing and will not be continuing this conversation. I have better things to do.

                • weka

                  Karen, I already understand why 1080 is used in NZ. I understand it from both the formal side that you are linking to (from reading and listening to the debates), and I understand it from having spent a lot of time in the bush and seen the difference between bush that’s been 1080-ed and bush that hasn’t (I have not doubt that 1080 works in lots of situations).

                  I think what you’ve failed to grasp, or are unwilling to look at is the politics involved. This is a political blog, so it’s normal to look at those issues. DOC and the govt take a specific stance that has to be understood within the neoliberal and budgetary contexts.

                  There are also philosophical issues esp in DOC. To give a very good example of this, DOC’s position on gorse and broom for decades has been that they’re introduced weeds that must be eradicated. They’ve taken the slash and burn approach (or its modern herbicide equivalent). In the meanwhile increasing numbers of people went out and trialed landrestoration, including native reforestation, by using the gorse or broom as a nursery cover. This has now been proven beyond doubt to be an effective technique for many situations. Finally DOC are getting on board and are starting to make use of this. But DOC were wrong, they were blinded by their beliefs. It took other people to get them to change.

                  Am happy to post some links to support that last paragraph later if needed.

        • b waghorn

          I’ve done a bit of possum hunting for doc and for fur it’s tough work in forest country , when I did it for fur I needed 20 a day witch is harder to do than you’d imagine.
          At $1 a possum you would need 150 a day minimum to cover costs and make a living wich would be pushing it to say the least especially if you want to get numbers down.

          • weka

            It’s always sounded like hard work to me, and not for everyone. The people that do well seem to be the people that love being in the bush.

            Bounties could be on top of the fur price. Plus if the infrastructure, incentives and support were put in place it, it would make it easier.

            • b waghorn

              If it was to happen they should model it on how the deer cullers operated you get payed a wage but have to collect the tail s to prove you getting out and killing them .
              To really make a difference they would have to be targeting mustilids and cats to.

              • weka

                Did the deer cullers take the meat out?

                I wondered if the possum fur hunters could be paid extra on top of their own business to run stoat and rat lines as well.

                • b waghorn

                  No to meat recovery as far as I know .
                  Really to get big numbers efficiently you have to work on a kill and move on ,even plucking fresh killed possums is time consuming .
                  One Job I worked we weren’t allowed to pluck fur for that reason.
                  One of the reasons 1080 is favoured is because it kills animals that feed on dead carcases of poisoned animal’s ,not sure how effective on cats and stoats but it is deadly to dogs.

                  • weka

                    “One of the reasons 1080 is favoured is because it kills animals that feed on dead carcases of poisoned animal’s ,not sure how effective on cats and stoats but it is deadly to dogs.”

                    I think work is still being done on how useful that is, but it’s a problem for trapping, if the bodies are just being left in the bush. Free stoat and rat food. Someone should do the research on if that worsens or lessens predation on birds.

                    I think establishing a possum fur/meat industry is crucial to solving the possum problem long term. This doesn’t mean every possum has to be taken out, but certainly the easier ones could be. If you can get money for the fur, the meat, and a bounty on the ears or tail that more than covers the extra work, then the whole thing becomes more sustainable (economically and in terms of effectiveness).

                    I used to talk to the told timers who made money out of skinning possums, so I’ve seen this work to some degree (ie more work doesn’t have to mean less reward).

    • The government assures us 1080 doesn’t do the things this article indicates.
      The government assured us the same thing with the rest of the list.

      The evidence and the history is in when it comes to the NZ government and its credibility in such circumstances …………

      This is the logical fallacy known as non sequitur. It argues:

      Premise 1: the government was wrong when it declared product X was safe.
      Premise 2: the government has declared product Y is safe.
      Conclusion: therefore, product Y is unsafe.

      The conclusion doesn’t actually follow from the premises. It’s a very common fallacy and is the main reason we keep juries from knowing defendants’ criminal records – to prevent them formulating the false argument “Defendant was guilty of crime X, is now charged with crime Y, therefore is guilty of crime Y.”

      • vto 4.2.1

        Yes I understand that pm, but there is a pattern isn’t there and that is what tips the scales against that particular logic fallacy.

        It is all about the pattern, though appreciate it is a difficult mix to bake.

        • Draco T Bastard

          Nope, it’s all about the science and research. Anything else is BS.

          • vto

            I disagree. The use by politicians of anything, including science and research, paints a glaze across the particular issue. The history of such political use necessitates this.

            It is the mixing of politics and science that is the problem. That is the pattern being looked at.

            • Psycho Milt

              It’s not clear to me there’s a pattern at all. If we’re assuming a pattern of malicious false assurances of safety, we’d need some evidence of malicious intent. If we’re assuming a pattern of incompetent false assurances of safety, we’d have to compare the number of incorrect assurances with the number of correct ones, and decide whether the proportion of incorrect ones is higher than would be accounted for by ordinary human error.

              In this instance, the claims about 1080 require us to believe that either DOC staff are incompetent to figure out the least-worst, most cost-effective way to prevent extinction of native wildlife, or that they’re maliciously participating in a programme they know will advance the extinction of wildlife. The first one is highly unlikely, and the second one is just plain nuts.

              • vto

                Perhaps a touch more nuanced. I imagine it is more due to reliance on poor science that happens to suit political purposes, so half incompetent and half intentional (on politicans part, not DOC)

              • weka

                “In this instance, the claims about 1080 require us to believe that either DOC staff are incompetent to figure out the least-worst, most cost-effective way to prevent extinction of native wildlife, or that they’re maliciously participating in a programme they know will advance the extinction of wildlife. The first one is highly unlikely, and the second one is just plain nuts.”

                Well that’s the problem with the outside rationalists perspective. THe argument is logical, but it doesn’t follow quite that black and white in real life. DOC do make mistakes, and not just with 1080. But that doesn’t make them incompetent in the absolute way you’ve just implied.

                One of the problems is that DOC have been on a learning curve re 1080 and early on made claims about birds not being killed. I don’t know if they didn’t know or just communicated poorly. I don’t think they lied intentionally. DOC exist in this weird situation where the regional offices are in communities that include large parts of the population that are very critical of many things they do. So they’re often defensive. Even now their communications around 1080 have this edge, instead of being up front, open and proactive.

                So it’s not just about the science and research. The cultural and social, and as vto points out political issues are also a big part of this.

          • Rosemary McDonald

            The Animal Health Board needs to be brought into any discussion about the use of 1080. Any discussion about the control of possums on DOC land that borders farming areas. That borders farms with dairy cows…who can catch TB from possums. No one wants to drink ‘TB milk”. There is a vaccine for TB, that could be used on the dairy herd BUT unfortunately the usual test for a TB infection will give a ‘positive’ if the cow has been vaccinated.

            So, much work has been done, here and overseas, to develop either a test that does not give a false + for a vaccinated cow, or a vaccine that does not give a false positive when a cow is tested for TB infection.

            All going well, cows can be vaccinated against TB, and the need for mass drops of 1080 on DOC land adjacent to dairy farms will wane.

            A lot of this work has been done in the UK in response to the culling of badgers…also TB carriers, who were infecting dairy herds with TB.

            As an aside, I did a bit of research into this after a Natrad programme on the worldwide shortage of BCG…the tb vaccine. Bladder cancer patients were complaining that their treatment (of BCG into their bladder to quell tumour growths) was being jeopordised because of the shortage of BCG.

            I may be drawing a long bow here……

  5. North 5

    Does anyone sense that “Je Suis…..” is plummeting head first into the grotesque ? That it is a facile catch cry the raison d’etre of which is to uphold eurocentric exceptionalism and licence us as soldiers of the same ? That in time it will take on comedic colours carrying no more moral authority than and all the meaning of “Yeah, Right” ? I do. Particularly when I think about the biennial 100 fold slaughter carried out in Gaza and the virtual absence of “Je Suis…..” about that.

  6. AsleepWhileWalking 6

    UK State pensions cut – only 45% to get full new payout – applies to new retirees from April 2016. They say that nobody will be worse off….

    Hopefully NZ welfare doesn’t end up footing a higher pension payments (under the reciprocal agreements) due to this change.


  7. a heads-up for roliing stones fans..

    ..clack yr zimmer-frames over to the radio-dial..

    ..and turn that knob..

    ..keith richards is interviewed on nat-rad..just after 10.00am..

    • and if u miss this ‘cos yr lining up 4 yr pills/whatever..

      ..it will be in the nine-to-noon section on the nat-rad websits..

      ..(get the grand-kid to ferret it out for you..what other use are they..?..)

      • Lindsey 7.1.1

        You patronising little so and so! – one entry might be taken as humour – two is just insulting. As a Rolling Stone fan of many years, I will listen to the interview on line later. I can’t do it now, because I am at work. You know about work don’t you? It is the thing people do so they can pay taxes to fund schools, hospitals and benefits.
        I may be of pension age but I and many like me still have my marbles and my mobility.

        • JanM

          But not your sense of humour, obviously 🙂

        • Realblue

          “You know about work…?” No sadly Phil Ure does not.

          • phillip ure

            yes i do..

            ..it’s called http://whoar.co.nz/

            ..and the history of ‘work’ can be seen not only in the daily round-up of local/global news/items of interest..(i start @ 5.00-5.30 every morning..)

            ..but also in the hand-picked search-engine of approx 100,000 entries..

            ..the very best of the best..



            ..that’s ‘work’ with a big ‘w’…

            • Realblue

              What’s it pay Phil? I thought the State paid your bills. If so shouldn’t you be looking for full time paid work?

              • Clemgeopin

                Why don’t you mind your own business instead of being so impertinent and indulging in such a personal attack.

        • phillip ure

          (@ zimmer-frame wielding rolling stones fan..)

          i think that is the first time i have seen that claimed as some sort of respectability/’authority’..

          ..”..As a Rolling Stone fan of many years..”..(says ‘angry’ of westmere..)

          ..(and a ‘harrumph..!’ or two wouldn’t have been out of place..eh..?..)

          ..did you miss out the junkie-years..?

          ..and given the music u love is totally drug-drenched..

          ..you’d be all up for legalising all drugs..eh..?..

          ..(i mean..u aren’t anti-drug..?..are u..?..

          ..if so..you had better burn all those old 78 rpm rolling stones records..

          (..i’m presuming you ‘gave-up’ long before cd’s arrived..eh..?..)

          ..’cos they are so much in praise of/riddled with cannabis/heroin/cocaine..

          ..they almost fail drug-tests..

  8. Worth a thought.

    Democracy is supposed to be rule of the people, by the people, and for the people. But in order to rule effectively, the people need political knowledge. If they know little or nothing about government, it becomes difficult to hold political leaders accountable for their performance. Unfortunately, public knowledge about politics is disturbingly low. In addition, the public also often does a poor job of evaluating the political information they do know. This state of affairs has persisted despite rising education levels, increased availability of information thanks to modern technology, and even rising IQ scores. It is mostly the result of rational behavior, not stupidity. Such widespread and persistent political ignorance and irrationality strengthens the case for limiting and decentralizing the power of government.

    It’s American, but the general point is certainly applicable here. The public aren’t “stupid” if they vote Nat and the left should take into account the information gathering and filtering used by the broad public when making their voting decisions. Sadly, the Nats, with Crosby Textor are much better at it.


    • Colonial Rawshark 8.1

      Bear in mind that those voters who believed that Labour was not fit to govern, and as a result voted for someone else or did not vote at all, were very quickly proven right by Labour MPs like Parker, Nash and Shearer.

      • Clemgeopin 8.1.1

        Good point. Hopefully better sense of unity, common sense and loyalty will prevail from now on.

      • rhinocrates 8.1.2

        Oh I do, indeed. Three dodged bullets right there.

        I think that people do make rational choices in voting, based on an assessment of the unity and competence observed, not on some quantitive rational assessment of policies.

        Psychologists often refer to Emotional Intelligence or EQ, which is the ability to perceive and behave effectively socially. The smirking idiots like Hipkins who said on national TV (!) that Labour’s real enemies were within, that David Cunliffe was a “fink” and the others like Goff who leaked like the Titanic must have been congratulating themselves on being machiavellian geniuses when the public could read perfectly that bumbling and backstabbing narcissists like these could never be trusted with national governance.

        The best policies in the world don’t count if there’s no intention or ability to carry them out and while people didn’t have the time to sort through all these nice policies, they could see in an instant that Labour was unfit to govern. National was successful in isolating Collins in the public eye while Labour’s dissent looked endemic. The public aren’t being stupid or ignorant in not having the time to sit down and do XML spreadsheets and comparative policy analysis, they’re smart in being able to see how coherent or incoherent a team is.

        The lesson to politicians, as I take it: is don’t insult the public’s intelligence; to be Machiavelli you have to be as smart as Machiavelli (and you’re not) and when you lose, don’t blame anyone but yourself.

        That said, I hope that Andrew Little is now saying “Cut the crap” to caucus well away from the cameras. Very likely he is.

      • dave brown 8.1.3

        CR are you talking about yourself, those who judged the party by its disunity, or those who were convinced that Labour too was ‘dirty’, or a general disgust with pollies?
        That’s a melange of motivations.
        I don’t think Labour is reduced to its rightists, or its disunity, or that it was implicated in ‘dirty politics’.
        Those who think that they can change society without first breaking the hold of the pollies on politics are destined to our remaining 40 yrs in the wilderness.
        Labour is a crawling class contradiction that has to be exploded along with capitalism.
        The left has to hold its nose and fight the rightists wherever they insert themselves as the mercenaries of the bosses and purge them.

        • Colonial Rawshark

          Labour is a crawling class contradiction


        • Draco T Bastard

          The left has to hold its nose and fight the rightists wherever they insert themselves as the mercenaries of the bosses and purge them.


          It’s all very well being a broadchurch but it fails when some in the group are undermining rather than supporting. Those white-anters need to be identified and removed ASAP.

    • Karen 8.2

      I agree this also applies in NZ.

      I used to think people who voted National or Act were greedy or stupid or both, but I later had to add another characteristic to the list – ignorant (uninformed if you think ignorant is a bit harsh).
      Most people are not sufficiently interested in politics to find out any more than what is provided by their favourite radio DJ or TV personality, and most of these are right wing..

      • greywarshark 8.2.1

        @ Karen
        Does that make voters who don’t bother to be informed able to be fairly called wilfully ignorant, confused, uninvolved, uneducated, uninterested, saturated with bullshit?

        Is it fact, that there is a lack of home and school discussion and reasoned analysis of politics? A lack of explanation about the country and the political moves that made it? A lack of useful, easily assimilated information about policy and political direction? Therefore are all citizens and those who vote, unused to understanding present political moves, with an ability to put them in context and compare them to a template of what a good polity is?

        All of the above??

        • Karen

          All of the above.

        • rhinocrates

          As von Clausewitz said, “no battle plan has ever survived contact with the enemy.” Having the right policies is good, but they inevitably have to change to match circumstances when something outside of one’s control occurs such as a rise or drop in oil prices, a stock market crash, an eruption in Iceland or whatever.

          You need therefore the strong constant backbone of principle first to ensure that your policies serve them, and the wit and flexibility that they will be implemented despite changing circumstances.

          The Greek word from which we get “governance” is “kybernetes” (from which we also get “cybernetics”), meaning “steersman” i.e.., a steersman is someone who has a constant goal in sight and is able to navigate a boat correctly through shifting currents.

          Policies are a means by which basic principles are implemented in a current dynamic situation. Labour had plenty of policies and IIRC, polling showed that the public actually preferred them to National’s – but in my opinion they advertised loudly that they had neither principles nor competence, so their policies didn’t matter.

          The lesson that all media advisors learn and pass on, I hope, is that when you try to communicate an overt message, there is a secondary message that will be read instinctively by the recent and they will apply a different, emotional logic to it. National was better at controlling that.

          • joe90

            i.e.., a steersman is someone who has a constant goal in sight and is able to navigate a boat correctly through shifting currents.

            + + +

            Yet they fancy themselves to be navigators.

          • Draco T Bastard

            As von Clausewitz said, “no battle plan has ever survived contact with the enemy.”

            That wasn’t Clausewitz but Helmuth von Moltke the Elder.

            • greywarshark

              Thank you for the info DTB the Leadsman?

              @ rhinocrates

              Was it meant to be ‘the recipients’?
              I think this point is the answer to many of our questions as to why??
              Policies are a means by which basic principles are implemented in a current dynamic situation. Labour had plenty of policies and IIRC, polling showed that the public actually preferred them to National’s – but in my opinion they advertised loudly that they had neither principles nor competence, so their policies didn’t matter.

          • rhinocrates

            “recent”? Curse you autocorrect!

            • Colonial Rawshark

              National, for whatever reason, had messages which better connected with the mood of the people. Labour seemed to have messages designed to connect with its own set in down town Wellington – hence my criticism of those enured within the “Thorndon Bubble.”

              The raising of the retirement age policy was an example. That was a Labour Party policy designed to speak to Treasury types, and appeal to comfortably off middle class fiscal conservatives.

              Utterly ridiculous. And that’s not including how economically inept it is to try and force people to stay in the work force for longer when there are already not enough jobs to go around.

      • Clemgeopin 8.2.2


  9. Those who showed an interest in Dave Kennedy’s “food in Southland” post might enjoy this article in today’s StuffNZ page on forest-gardening.

    • you’ve really tricked out/gone with/embraced the beard there..eh..?

      ..mr guyton..?


      ..r u thinking of auditioning for that zz-top covers-band i’ve heard is being set up in riverton..?

      ..good article/acknowledgement of yr efforts..

      ..(i’ve whoar-ed it..)

      • Robertguyton 9.1.1

        I’ve chosen to go the “man way” there, Phil – no scraping my face bare to style myself as a woman 🙂
        Thanks for your support with “Whoar”. On the subject of beards…you’d look fine in one (overlaying an imaginary beard over my recall of your face from the time you visited my not-long-established Riverton garden way back when), very Rua Kenana, in fact.

        • phillip ure

          last week i was clean-shaven..

          ..this week i am sporting a paul diamond..

          ..(and it’s a ‘styling’-one…i wear it well..(i.i.s.s.m..)

          ..next week..?..who knows..?

          ..they come and they go…

          ..and i m torn between the stylings of the beard..

          ..and showing off the results from my yrs of veganism…

          • Robertguyton

            Wrinkle-free cheeks, huh!

            • phillip ure

              i know..!

              ..’vanity..vanity..all is vanity’..

              ..living in the fucken grinding-poverty i do..

              ..it’s something to feel good about..

              • Clemgeopin

                Hey, Phillip, what about the video you promised a dew weeks ago about your dog on a bike ride with you? Did it happen?

                • yeah..it’s nearly done..

                  ..it is growing/changing..

                  ..and will be a series of clips…

                  ..they should spread much joy/humour…

                  ..he really is a funny little dog…

                  ..i’ll let you know when the first one is up..(next day or so..)

  10. Ad 10

    Did anyone catch the article by Gordon Campbell at scoop on the rollout of GCSB’s Cortex as security intelligence services to the major private sector business of New Zealand? Some nice points there.

    • Draco T Bastard 10.1

      Gordon Campbell on Ian Fletcher resignation & GCSB’s new role

      Cortex is a menu of tools and services. What Fletcher has revealed about it so far is that it will engage the GCSB in providing corporate security protections to the private sector that (a) the firms involved should be paying for themselves and not getting the taxpayer to provide, via the GCSB and (b) that will inevitably entail the sharing of secret intelligence with the private sector that will continue to be denied to ordinary citizens.

      So, the government has stepped in to provide a service for free that corporations should pay for themselves?

      Can anyone say subsidy? The corporations are becoming more and more of a drain on our society and thus need to be kicked out.

      • Ad 10.1.1

        It’s not a bad debate. (thank you for the link).

        If we were going to subsidise (say) Fonterra with GCSB protective services, wouldn’t this be a good use of public resources? After all we’re all pretty vulnerable to Fonterra. Agree with Campbell that we need the public debate. But I would rather GCSB act like a proper arm of the military and subsidize Fonterra’s digital defense, rather than subsidize dairy farmers with New Zealand’s water quality.

      • Treetop 10.1.2

        This morning on hearing that there will be no facial recognition used in NZ for the Cricket World Cup to be held next month, I considered that this maybe the reason for Fletcher going.

        Need to find out if Australia will use the technology.

        I have a thought or two about Fletcher’s timing, (need to check when he is bailing out).

        • Treetop

          Edit is not working for me.

          Fletcher is stepping down on 27 February 2015. The Cricket World Cup is from 14 February – 28 March 2015.

          Like I said I have a thought or two.

        • millsy

          No beer, no mexican waves, no dancing, no cheering, no clapping.

          We all just sit there and watch the cricket in silence, and if we so much as sneeze, the goons in the flouro vests will come and take us away,

          • Treetop

            Does the first sentence apply to a corporate box?

            The Black Caps are doing such a good job, I just hope that they do not run out of steam during the Cricket World Cup.

      • Clemgeopin 10.1.3

        The greedy wealthy and the crooked corporates are the real thieves of public money. They steal with a straight face and cunning logic wearing flash suits and fancy ties.

      • Murray Rawshark 10.1.4

        Sharing secret intelligence with the private sector is obscene. Getting us to pay for it is even worse. This is one more step closer to fascism. I hope someone from the Greens reads Campbell’s article and asks some pointed questions. Labour will probably support it. They don’t differ from Key on issues like this.

  11. Morrissey 11

    My correspondence with a genius
    by MORRISSEY BREEN (from the 2003 Archive)
    Newsgroups: nz.general
    Date: 2003-10-02 16:00:46 PST

    After nine o’clock this morning, this writer chances on the dapper NewstalkZB “pundit” Leighton Smith talking, in rather elevated, some might say pompous, tones about his grave concern that society is suffering from an “erosion of values”. So impressed is this writer that he (i.e. moi) is moved to compose a letter to the great man, which is sent off, via e-mail, shortly before ten o’clock…..


    Dear Leighton,
    It is interesting to hear you talking this morning of your concern about the “erosion of values”.

    Just yesterday, you were defending Paul Holmes’s racist comments (“People are calling Paul Holmes a racist. Good GRIEF!”)

    How does defending someone who calls a black man a “cheeky darkie” show a “commitment to “values”? And how does calling Muhammad Ali a “nigger”, as you did a couple of years ago, show a commitment to “values”?

    Yours sincerely,
    Morrissey Breen


    Shortly after, the great baritone deigns to reply!

    LEIGHTON SMITH: Coming up to, errrrr, twenty minutes to eleven. Just taking a look at the e-mails. M-m-m-m-m-m-m-m-m-m-m-Morrissey. You’re an IDIOT. Let’s just leave it at that. To the phones now….

    And, errrr, that is it. THAT is, apparently, what the station means by “Tune Your Mind”.

    • vto 11.1

      ha ha, excellent exposure of the fools of talkback and radio

    • greywarshark 11.2

      Good on yu Morrisey. Someone needs to put a pin into that zeppelin Latent Smith.

    • ianmac 11.3

      Reminds me of the response fromTau Henare at the time of the Child “Smacking” Bill. After a reasonable question to him his email reply to me was “You’re an idiot!” The next day Key announced the about face and joined the Bill.

    • Morrissey, I hope you were suitably chastened by the Great One’s incisive brilliance. You should don sackcloth and ashes and flagellate yourself for a week after such insolence.

      • Morrissey 11.4.1

        Morrissey, I hope you were suitably chastened by the Great One’s incisive brilliance. You should don sackcloth and ashes and flagellate yourself for a week after such insolence.

        Actually, what I did was to get in contact with him on air on a few more occasions. I’ll post up one or two of those encounters in the next wee while, along with a brief transcript* of a revealing few minutes of his programme this morning. Keep watching this excellent forum, my friend.

        * All right, all right, Felix, a rough apology for a transcript.

        • ropata:rorschach

          Excellent, can’t wait. I had a good chat to one of their late night hosts sometime in Nov/Dec last year. Can’t remember the name, but he had money on Grant Robertson for the Labour leader, I told him he was dreaming mate.

  12. ma rohemo 12

    FJK, when questioned about his tenure as PM.

    “I would have thought 12 years is possibly a bit long. But certainly in the short term, I anticipate being there for a while.”

    Kind of oxymoronic.

  13. greywarshark 13

    The USA used to try and deal with citizens who were rorting the system eventually, rather than the system itself being rorted and rooted.

    I liked this from 100 years ago today. for 17 January 1915.
    BORN TODAY: (only in the USA) – Vincent Kosuga – American onion farmer “best known for manipulating the onion futures market. Though he made millions of dollars on commodity trading, his actions were highly controversial and attracted government scrutiny.
    This scrutiny led to the passing of the Onion Future Act, which banned the trading of futures contracts on onions.” [Wikipedia]

    Makes you weep doesn’t it?

  14. joe90 14

    Seems we’re anything but a principled player, we’re neck deep.

    Normally, internship applicants need to have polished resumes, with volunteer work on social projects considered a plus. But at Politerain, the job posting calls for candidates with significantly different skill sets. We are, the ad says, “looking for interns who want to break things.”

    Politerain is not a project associated with a conventional company. It is run by a US government intelligence organization, the National Security Agency (NSA). More precisely, it’s operated by the NSA’s digital snipers with Tailored Access Operations (TAO), the department responsible for breaking into computers.


    An intern’s tasks might also include remotely destroying the functionality of hard drives. Ultimately, the goal of the internship program was “developing an attacker’s mindset.”

    The internship listing is eight years old, but the attacker’s mindset has since become a kind of doctrine for the NSA’s data spies. And the intelligence service isn’t just trying to achieve mass surveillance of Internet communication, either. The digital spies of the Five Eyes alliance — comprised of the United States, Britain, Canada, Australia and New Zealand — want more.


    • Bill 15.1

      I suspect that would have been an interesting and revealing read (I went to the Der Spiegel link)…if I understood jargon and could then speculate on potential uses and/or consequences of the programmes being (not) explained.

      Like much specialist writing and reporting, whether it be on the Snowdon files, AGW or whatever, it becomes fairly useless unless somebody is willing to take it and knock it down into every-day speech and every-day frames of reference.

      I’m not thick, but at some point it all became a tsunami of ‘white noise’ that I couldn’t get a handle on. I suspect the NSA and who-ever simply shrug when these ‘exclusives’ are published because they know that most people just won’t ‘get it’.

      • tracey 15.1.1

        But in time articles come out by those who examine, understand and write for those of us lacking. It means we don’t get the full weight of it today but within a month or so we will.

    • nadis 15.2

      Does anyone else find it ironic that Snowden has found sanctuary at one of the few states with more intrusive electronic monitoring of its citizens than the USA?

      Just waiting for the Russian whistleblower to turn uo in the US.

  15. tracey 16

    Interestingly Simon Power seems to understand the concept of Conflict of Interest even if his successor as Minister of Justice didn’t.


  16. Draco T Bastard 17

    Farmers not exempt from country’s laws

    There are a few tell-tale signs leading me to the conclusion that dairy farmers are very close to the brink.

    What brink is that, you ask?

    It’s the brink of being totally “out and proud” about unashamedly asking Kiwis to subsidise them even more than we’re already doing.

    What subsidy is that, you ask?

    If we stopped the subsidies dairy would collapse overnight. In fact, I’m pretty sure that most farms would and not just dairy simply because the physical resources needed would no longer be available.

    We seriously need to look at what resources we have available at a sustainable level and then fit our economy within those bounds. This would, IMO, close down about 50% of our farms.

    • vto 17.1

      That was a good opinion piece, highlighting the farmers “expectation” delusion.

      I particularly enjoy it when they claim that NZ would be poorer without them and, in the same dumb simplistic manner, reply that;

      without teachers they wouldn’t be able to read the cowshed instructions
      without nurses they wouldn’t have decent births
      without road workers they wouldn’t get their milk to port
      without port workers they wouldn’t load the ships
      without house builders they die from the cold

      and then they have the smart-arse cheek to take the rivers and other public resources, and then not just that, but shit in them as well and dump their businesses refuse in the public estate

      fuck they annoy me ……..

      • b waghorn 17.1.1

        You got it vto all us farmers want to achieve in life is to fuck the planet its what gets us up in the morning. And if we accidentally feed a few people on the way I guess that can’t be helped.

        • Draco T Bastard

          Well, that is certainly the message that is coming through loud and clear in the MSM from farming spokespeople. If it’s not true then I suggest:

          1. Getting better spokespeople and
          2. Working to ensure that farmers that do fuck the planet are driven out of farming for good

          You can’t sit there and whinge about how farmers are portrayed while farmers are fucking the environment while getting massive subsidies and doing nothing to stop either. We really can’t swim in our waterways any more and it really is due to farming.

          • b waghorn

            Firstly that is just a rubbish article full of nothing useful.
            Secondly farmers don’t make the rules government does so instead of attacking farmers in large general terms which sounds like whinging to me,focus on getting the changes needed .

            • Draco T Bastard

              Firstly that is just a rubbish article full of nothing useful.

              It was full of facts that you’re now denying.

              Secondly farmers don’t make the rules government does

              Often at the behest of the farmers (Check out the canning of ECan and the present RMA changes) and there’s nothing stopping you from doing more than the rules require to protect the environment.

              Really, you’re just whinging while denying your own responsibility.

        • vto

          b waghorn, I realise my post comes across pretty negative but that’s it. As for this… “You got it vto all us farmers want to achieve in life is to fuck the planet its what gets us up in the morning. And if we accidentally feed a few people on the way I guess that can’t be helped.”

          that has no relevance to my point. But it is a typical farmer response exactly along the lines the article was opining on. Quite ironic.

          and it also highlights another point that annoys me “in this space”, to use that horrid term…

          farmers have claimed for generations that they want to leave the land in better shape than when they got it, however that is clearly a fabrication as the land is in worse shape now than a generation ago. And the generation before that and the generation before that…

          .. the facts show that farmers have left the land worse than when they got it.

          This is an unfortunate fact for farmers. How about you confront this and offer your thoughts rather than provide the typical farmer response of harrumphing and storming off. Man up and answer the facts. please

          • b waghorn

            There is large amounts of plantings and qe2 covenanting going on in nz there would be more creeks and rivers fenced off now than ever. Taupo and Rotorua farmers are responding to nitrogen caps . it shows a lack of thinking to just lump all farmers into a heap as greedy selfish fools.
            As for my comment it was more targeted at that rubbish article of the kind that the msm like to churn out to to polarize people .
            And I still believe the left lose a lot of votes to the right because the farmer bashing generally comes from the left .
            I have asked a few people on the standard to out line all these subsidies they rabbit on about but other than theoretical carbon taxes the silence has been defining if I wasn’t so polite I’d call them liars.

            • vto

              Thanks, appreciate it and please keep it up as it is difficult to discuss these matters in a robust manner face to face I find.

              Regarding your point about plantings and QEII etc, you are right and that is good but I wonder if it is enough to outweigh the damage occurring elsewhere. At least it is moving in the right direction.

              I think the most important thing is that recently (like since that dipshit and antagonistic Fed Farmers president Don Nicholson left) it appears that the farming sector is acknowledging the impact that NZ farming has had on the rivers and land etc, and is moving to rectify.

              Also, while it may not appear so, these points are not aimed at farmers personally as they are merely responding to market signals and business rules and norms etc. Anybody who was farming would likely act in the same manner, including myself probably if I was a farmer. In fact have done just so in the long distant past … The problem is the market signals and busness rules and norms, not the particular people.

              The subsidies that are referred to are generally those such the free access to farming resources e.g. water, which inflates a farms value and income without associated cost which the public bear in lost environment. Another example is cleaning up the damage that has been done e.g. Lake Ellesmere and Lake Rotorua.

              There is definitely a chasm between the farming sector and the rest of NZ – a chasm that has widened over the last ten-fifteen years as the damage done over previous generations has become more apparent for people to see and as rivers have dried up. That chasm hasn’t been helped by the reaction of farmers to this awakening – which imo has been along the lines that article highlighted. Farmers haven’t liked losing their position near the top of the respect tables and don’t seem to appreciate and understand why this has happened. It is natural to react angrily to this…. but as said above it seems to be changing.

              These are big big issues for our country, some of the biggest.

              • b waghorn

                Greenys need a two track approach ,on one hand keep lobbying for the environment and on the other support and encourage those farmers who are leading the way to sustainable farming stop just gifting the rural vote to national.

      • millsy 17.1.2

        Without MAF, DSIR, Massey and Lincoln they wouldnt have had access to farming methods that made them the world beaters they are today.

  17. Today’s meme floating ’round the Twitterverse: #FiveWordsToJoinNational

    … Look, actually greed is good
    … GCSB is just Norton AntiVirus
    … Global warming isn’t really happening
    … Those poors make bad choices
    … The Right Honourable Judith Collins
    … My good friend Cameron Slater
    … John Key’s a Financial Genius!
    … Mummy and Daddy are rich
    … All teachers are bloody communists
    … I am all right Jack

    etc, etc

  18. Ad 19

    Is it Trotskyist to want Hilary to lose so the U.S. can have a Republican triple lock House/Senate/President so the world and Democrats can see how bad they really are?

    • i want warren to beat clinton..

      ..and then become president..

      ..then we wd see some real change..

      ..(clinton won’t deliver that..that much is a guarantee..)

      ..there wd be less collateral-damage that way..

      ..and it will happen sooner..

      • millsy 19.1.1

        In the 1930’s the business sector plotted to overthrow FDR. It was only foiled when the guy who the elites approached to lead the coup and run the country blew the whistle on the whole thing.

        Dont think it wont happen again if/when Warren gets in.

    • Ad,
      Dems and Repubs are basically working for the same team (bankers and moneyed elites) so all you’d get is more corporatocracy. The chance of restoring a New-Deal type of regime in the USA appears pretty slim. It would need to be accompanied by a mass movement like Occupy but an order of magnitude more powerful and obnoxious.

    • Murray Rawshark 19.3

      I think it’s delusional to expect the Democratic hierarchy to ever see anything.

  19. Colonial Rawshark 20

    Iceland likely to formally withdraw application to join EU

    Smart, gutsy move.


  20. hoom 21

    There is so very much completely bizzare about this story I don’t know where to start…

  21. Morrissey 22

    Jim Mora says “Je suis Charlie”. Then he asks, in baffled wonderment:
    “Do we all now have to be inoffensive and diplomatic?”

    The Panel, Radio NZ National, Monday 19 January 2015
    Jim Mora, Nicky Pellegrino, Ellen Read, Julie Moffett

    A few years ago on this programme, the poisonous right wing historian Dr Michael Bassett snarled, snorted and then croaked, with Stygian malice, that Nicky Hager was a Holocaust-denier. Not a word of demur was uttered by host Jim Mora, producer Susan Baldacci or anyone else in the studio.

    Of course, the fact that Bassett’s statement was ridiculous didn’t matter; what DID matter was that he made the statement, and effectively derailed the prospect of any serious discussion of the revelations about Bassett and his cronies in Hager’s 2005 book The Hollow Men. That extraordinary outburst was followed by…. nothing but silence.

    A charitable listener might have concluded that Jim Mora and the others were simply taken aback by Bassett’s ferocity, and were unable to believe that he had spoken those words. After all, how WOULD you ask a brutal ideologue to repeat what he’s just said? Perhaps you would say, ever so tentatively: “Sorry, Dr Bassett, but could you just say that again, clearly this time? Because it SOUNDED like you just called Nicky Hager, of all people, a Holocaust-denier! Ha ha ha ha ha!”

    Or, like any sane person would do, you would simply presume that you had mis-heard and just plough on with the next discussion. That’s clearly what Jim Mora decided to do on that infamous occasion; he obviously took the view that nothing was to be served by dwelling on the matter, and that anyway, poor old Michael Bassett had pretty well lost his marbles.

    Perhaps, though, part of the reason Jim Mora said nothing on that occasion was because he harboured some cock-eyed notion that even the most cynical and depraved liar has the right to say what he likes, even when what he says is complete and utter balderdash. This afternoon (Monday 19 January 2015) Jim Mora expressed support for the right of unfunny cartoonists to heap the foulest abuse on the weak and suffering. He even said, with only a little of his trademark sardonicism, “Je suis Charlie.”

    As well as allowing Michael Bassett to tell the most incendiary lie imaginable on his programme, Jim Mora has allowed the likes of Jordan Williams, John Barnett, John Bishop, Nevil “Breivik” Gibson, Chris Wikaira, Barry Corbett, Garth “The Knife” McVicar and Stephen Franks [1] — to name only the most odious — to make provocative, partisan and highly contentious statements, rarely even demurring, let alone challenging or contradicting them. And today, in the same vein, he has expressed solidarity with the people who choose to engage in crude racial goading of a racial minority in a virulent French rag.

    Try to engage in more measured, reasonable commentary, however, and Mora and his producers will run you off the programme. Just look how quickly they banned “Bomber” Bradbury after he had the temerity to draw attention to the crass and irresponsible behaviour of John Key. [2]

    You support abusive cartoonists, but banned Bomber Bradbury. What’s going on?

    Dear Jim,

    You asked: “Do we all now have to be inoffensive and diplomatic?”

    Interesting to hear you sticking up for free speech—or in this case, free racial abuse.

    While you seem perfectly happy to endorse the right of Charlie Hebdo to unleash the foulest abuse against an oppressed minority, you—or was it your producers?—banned Martyn “Bomber” Bradbury for daring to criticise the misconduct of the prime minister.

    I am sure that I am not the only one of your listeners to note the irony of your new stance.

    Yours sincerely,

    Morrissey Breen
    Northcote Point

    [1] http://thestandard.org.nz/open-mike-23082014/#comment-872149

    [2] http://gordoncampbell.scoop.co.nz/2011/10/10/gordon-campbell-on-rnz’s-banning-of-bomber-bradbury/

    • Mora is being perfectly consistent.
      * If you make incendiary/false/defamatory comments about minorities or private citizens, then that’s “Free Speech”
      * If you abuse the establishment or criticise the powerful, you are banned.
      * If you are a whistleblower or reveal dirty secrets, then expect a visit from the cops.

      Kiwi jonolism 101.

    • Te Reo Putake 22.2

      Um, what race dya reckon’s been abused, Moz? I’d hate to think you’re lumping together many different peoples because of a shared characteristic. There’s probably a word for that, but buggered if I can remember what it is.

      • North 22.2.1

        So apart from that aspect TRP, viz. Morrissey’s reference to “race”, what’s your take on the thrust of what Morrissey says, as neatly encapsulated by Ropata:Rorschach @ 22.1 ? You know…….the incendiary being “Free Speech” when deployed against the unfashionable while much less directed in reverse is heinous speech.

        Disingenuous is your feigned loss of memory about the “probably” applicable “word”. Care to come right out and say what it is you think Morrissey’s up to…….”many different peoples”…….”shared characteristic” ?

        Would “hate to think” you’re trying a gratuitous, irresponsible, snippy, Bassett move on Moz. Would “hate to think” the elusive word(s) begin with ‘A’ and ‘S’ with a hyphen chucked in there somewhere. “Je Ne Suis Pas….” for such passive aggression……if that’s what you’re up to.

        I know you have plenty of wiggle room here TRP. That obviates the need to respond dismissively, or from high-horse, or even vulgarly…….as of late seems to be your wont.

        • phillip ure

          @ north..

          “..as of late, when memory is not strangely derelict – seems your wont..”

          ..+ 1..

        • Te Reo Putake

          Well, to start from the top, North, I replied to Moz in a subtle way that I’m sure he appreciated. He’s a stickler for accuracy, as we all know.

          R:R makes a good, if somewhat strained point. Mora was inconsistant with Bomber. Matthew Hooten has done worse, but has still been kept on. He (Bomber) should not have been dropped. Or, more pertinently, should never have been picked in the first place given his history of brain fart ranting. Bomber is as Bomber does.

          Free speech (or freedom of expression) has limits, but I have no problem with taking the piss out of religion. You can’t insult what doesn’t exist, so Gods all all kinds can do one as far as I’m concerned. However, insulting faith gets tricky. The insult becomes personal. So context is important.

          The difficulty in some folk’s understandings of the concept of free speech is basing it on a false equivelance. Denying the holocaust, for example, is not free spreech, it’s a hate crime.

          • Morrissey

            I replied to Moz in a subtle way that I’m sure he appreciated. He’s a stickler for accuracy, as we all know.

            Actually, I am. When I am a little loose with my terminology, as you have rightly pulled me up for here, I am happy to be corrected.

            Mora was inconsistant [sic] with Bomber. Matthew Hooten [sic] has done worse, but has still been kept on. He should not have been dropped.

            Very good, Te Reo. So far so good.

            Or, more pertinently, should never have been picked in the first place given his history of brain fart ranting.

            Nonsense. Bomber Bradbury’s contributions to that show, like Gordon Campbell’s and (recently) Dita Di Boni’s, stood out for their lucidity and honesty. He memorably drove Michelle Boag into a near fit of apoplexy one day by insisting that she explain why the rich should not be forced to pay their taxes. Your words describing Bomber are not only disrespectful, they’re utterly wrong.

            Bomber is as Bomber does.

            That’s a vacuous statement if ever there was one.

            Free speech (or freedom of expression) has limits, but I have no problem with taking the piss out of religion. You can’t insult what doesn’t exist, so Gods all all kinds can do one as far as I’m concerned. However, insulting faith gets tricky. The insult becomes personal. So context is important.

            Good, Te Reo. See, you CAN write sensibly!

            The difficulty in some folk’s [sic] understandings of the concept of free speech is basing it on a false equivelance. [sic] Denying the holocaust, for example, is not free spreech, it’s a hate crime.

            What about the cartoons that Der Stürmer and Völkischer Beobachter published in the 1930s and ’40s: were they free speech too?

            • Te Reo Putake

              “1030s and ’40s:”

              I laughed so hard I was nearly sic.

              • Morrissey

                Thank you, my punctilious pal. I’ve now corrected it, so your quibble will be an intriguing little diversion for scholars of the future.

                • Te Reo Putake

                  I’m just disappointed that you missed ‘spreech’. I’d like to think I’ve invented a new word that is apt for a discussion about Bomber Bradbury; a combination of speech and screech.

                  PS, whaddya reckon about Bomber’s own attacks on free speech via the medium of selectively removing comments from The Daily Blah that challenge his worldview? He’s almost RadioNZ like in his determination not have alternative views upset the zeitgeist.

                  • Morrissey

                    I’m not too impressed by his behaviour lately.

                    And “spreech” is a logical substitute for “sprechen”, I guess.

  22. Colonial Rawshark 23

    A million UK families now facing energy poverty – half of them working.

    Decision to privatise energy utilities a key factor.

  23. heads-up..!

    ..the gadget man on tvone on now. 7 pm…is pretty cool..

  24. Draco T Bastard 25

    How to talk about Money in Politics

    Confused about what the heck is going on out there with money in politics? Look no further! Your speed guide to the issue of money in politics is here!

    It’s about money in US politics but I’m sure much applies here as well despite our electoral spending limitations. Especially this bit:

    Money has always been a part of elections, but in recent years – and especially since the Citizens United decision in 2010 – campaign spending has exploded. The big problem, though, is that elections are now paid for by corporations and the super rich, and politicians do what the people who pay them want. (“Sorry, taxpayers.”)

    Why? Because the candidate with the most money wins 94% of the time so politicians care a lot about getting their hands on the moolah.

    Getting money out of politics is essential to the health of our democracy.

  25. joe90 26

    Nearly fifty years on and MLK remains relevant.


  26. felix 27

    So little Matty Hooton was missing from nine to noon today, and in his place was another Public Relations/Corporate Communications/Lobbyist.

    What the fuck, Radio NZ?

    Why is our public broadcaster being made available to these private interests under the guise of “commentary”?

    Isn’t that what Whaleoil and Kiwiblog are for?

    • hoom 27.1

      I only half heard it.
      Mike Williams seemed to be making a rare good strong argument for Govt intervention in the Housing market ie Govt is only thing big enough to actually make a big enough dent.
      And she whoever she was just like ‘oh I disagree obviously’ no evidence or better solution.

    • Morrissey 27.2

      Isn’t that what Whaleoil and Kiwiblog are for?

      No, that’s what installing Richard Griffin as Chairman of the Radio NZ Board of Governors is for.

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