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Open Mike 20/02/2018

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, February 20th, 2018 - 64 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 …

64 comments on “Open Mike 20/02/2018”

  1. Ed 1

    Great to see the PM is investigating this and that Matt Nippert is reporting it.

    This is a most concerning story and a lot of police time should be put into solving it.

    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern orders security agencies to look into case of burgled professor
    The Prime Minister today weighed in on the mysterious case of the professor and the break-ins, instructing the nation’s intelligence agencies to look into claims made by a Christchurch-based China expert.
    Last week the Herald broke news University of Canterbury academic Anne-Marie Brady told an Australian parliamentary committee she linked her work to a spate of recent burglaries and her sources on the Chinese mainland had been interrogated by state security officials.
    Brady gained international profile in September after publishing research detailing the extent of China’s influence campaigns in New Zealand focusing on a nexus of political donations, appointment of directorships and information management.
    Brady told the Australian parliament her office on campus was broken into in December, and last week her home was burgled – with computers, phones and USB storage devices stolen with other obvious valuables ignored by thieves.

    Chris Trotter also weighs in.

    “That Professor Anne-Marie Brady has had her home and office broken into, and her lap-top stolen, is deeply troubling. That the perpetrators were brazen enough to warn her that their attack was imminent, only heightens that concern. The most compelling reason for feeling uneasy about Associate-Professor Brady’s misfortunes, however, is their obvious potential to seriously damage Chinese-New Zealand relations.
    Brady is a China specialist who has won international acclaim for her research into the methods used by the Chinese government to monitor and, where possible, influence the conduct and opinions of Chinese nationals living abroad; as well as for describing the Communist Party of China’s (CPC) efforts to build maximum support for the “Motherland” among the world-wide Chinese diaspora.
    What has sharpened international interest in Brady’s work is her disclosure of the presence of former Chinese nationals in the caucuses of New Zealand’s two largest political parties; most particularly, the fact that one of those Members of Parliament has historical links with the Chinese intelligence community (if only in a pedagogical capacity).

    • One Anonymous Bloke 1.1

      Trotters article reads like an apology for ‘harmony’.

      The most compelling reason for feeling uneasy about Associate-Professor Brady’s misfortunes, however, is their obvious potential to seriously damage Chinese-New Zealand relations.

      Wait, what? Brady’s “misfortunes” are the problem?

      • Ed 1.1.1

        Chinese money and power and the craven behaviour of our politicians is the problem.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 1.1.1.1

          That problem is as old as the hills.

          Large countries should desire to protect and help the people, and small countries should desire to serve others. Both large and small countries benefit greatly from humility.

          Lao Tzu. My emphasis.

          Whereas the primary impulse in this case looks like fear: fear of being exposed, fear of ideas, of dissent; and of course fear of the economic consequences of upsetting the river crabs.

    • You got the blockquote on the first quote so why didn’t you use it on the second?

      Proper formatting makes things so much easier to read.

  2. Ed 2

    ‘Clean Green NZ.’
    Another 4 examples of what a sham this is.
    We so need to clean up our act.
    And stop lying and denying the state of our environment.

    Anger over lack of warning for algal bloom

    …..the river was running green with a blanket of white foam caused by the algal bloom.
    ……there’s masses of dead eels killed by the algae
    …..there had been cases of children at Horeke with skin rashes after swimming in recent weeks.

    Influx of stomach bugs as Auckland’s water quality drops

    Auckland Regional Public Health Service (ARPHS) has reported a steadily increasing number of people with the microscopic parasite cryptosporidium, with 53 instances so far in February, compared to 29 in January and 11 in December.
    Symptoms of cryptosporidiosis, which is contracted through contact with faeces, include diarrhoea, nausea, vomiting, stomach cramps, lack of appetite, and a fever, though some people show no symptoms.
    During periods of heavy rainfall, an often pungent mixture of sewage and stormwater is pumped out onto the city’s beaches as an emergency measure to prevent it overflowing onto private property.
    Following several recent storms, Aucklanders were warned to stay away from more than 30 beaches due to health warnings because of these overflows earlier this month

    Animal effluent warning for popular swimming river

    Residents have been told not to swim, wade or fish the Makino Stream and Oroua River because of the waste contamination.
    Manawatu-Whanganui Regional Council staff last night discovered a significant amount of effluent being discharged into the Makino Stream near Rata Street.
    The council’s manager for strategy and regulation, Dr Nic Peet, said the discharge most likely came from the yards where sheep and beef sales were held every Friday.

    Grave concerns for well-known swimming hole

    Dead fish and cattle excrement greeted Chrys Berryman on his return to a favourite childhood swimming hole near Waimate. “On arrival I couldn’t believe my eyes, the grass was long and cattle excrement was everywhere, even up to the water’s edge, despite there being an electric fence.
    “Dead fish were in the shallows and the final blow was when an Environment Canterbury app said we couldn’t swim there because the E.coli levels were too high.”
    Berryman contacted ECan with his concerns
    “I have one suggestion that would have an immediate impact, permanently fence off the reserve area and do not run cattle there.

    • alwyn 3.1

      Well, I suppose that the Labour Party honeymoon is still going, albeit at a rather passionless level.
      Like all honeymoons after an MMP election however it has been like those of the Praying Mantis. The dominant female has cannibalised her mates. Both the New Zealand First and the Green Parties have had their heads bitten off. The parties are dead. They just don’t know it.
      Labour will be rather unhappy that they are only in the high 40’s of course, and that National are still very close.
      At this point in the election cycle after the last change of Government the National party were, in the equivalent polls, up in the high 50’s and the Labour Party were down in the high 20’s.
      The public can see that the Government parties simply cannot carry out their pre-election promises. New Zealand First simply don’t care very much. Winston has the baubles of office and isn’t much interested in anything else.
      The Green Party have been shown up as impotent, bowing down before King Winston on their promises like a Kermadec sanctuary, and The Labour Party are having to admit, at least to themselves, that they simply have no idea on how to carry out their wild promises. Have they, for example, arranged to buy any of the enormous quantities of land they would need to even start on Kiwibuild? How is Robertson going to put together a budget when he simply doesn’t have the money to carry out his parties promises without raising taxes or borrowing enormous amounts.
      The honeymoon of sorts will no doubt continue for the rest of the year. The general public really doesn’t pay that much attention and will focus on the baby boom. Staunch Labour voters will however be asking. “Is this really as good as it gets?”

      • You_Fool 3.1.1

        I ma trying to work out who is more delusional, you or Tanz…

      • AB 3.1.2

        I think I predicted a number of these responses in my comment yesterday but attributed them to DPF rather than Alwyn.

        • alwyn 3.1.2.1

          Well, you did get quite a bit of the explanation about the poll correct didn’t you?
          I hadn’t seen them till you referenced them here.
          I don’t think your description of yourself is totally fair though. You aren’t totally boring, even if you are, rather to often, a sad, droning git.
          You are very wise in making your predictions though. If, as you did, you stick to the truth you are much more likely to have people agreeing with you than you are if you simply drift off into fantasy.

      • David Mac 3.1.3

        Key’s honeymoon went on for 9 years and he chewed the souls out of his coalition partners. It wasn’t a honeymoon, New Zealanders at large dug him. Now we dig Jacinda.

  3. Drum 4

    Just wanting to wish those on the West Coast, Golden Bay and Nelson a safe 48hrs. This severe weather system is due to arrive at the top of the South Island today.

    • prickles 4.1

      Thanks Drum. All quiet so far though very wet and some surface flooding. Completely calm so far – barely a breath of wind. Council has been proactive in getting the flooding signs out early and people do seem to taking notice of the messages to stay home. Most of the schools and many businesses – including the Westpac Bank – are closed for the day or from lunchtime. We are holding tight.

  4. Ed 5

    And then there were 5.
    Joyce joins the race.

    • logie97 5.1

      Conversations around the Mike and Kate dinner table usually produce a coordinated National Party line in the following day’s Herald … until today – one fawning over Joyce and the other liking Mitchell.

  5. Ed 6

    This might be the perfect week for a thread on the Standard about the ‘security consultant’ and ‘expert hostage negotiator’ Mark Mitchell and the chapter he features in Dirty Politics. It’s unlikely the msm will mention it.
    As far as they are concerned, he’s an ex police dog handler and a ‘sharp shooter ‘ who’s been ‘in the line of duty’.

    • Fireblade 6.1

      Mark Mitchell on the AM Show.

      Garner: “Have you killed anyone?”

      Mitchell: “um, look, when I’m asked this question I always say that in a war, um, there’s always casualties on both sides. I’d prefer to leave it at that, um, but I accept that people will be a bit curious about that”

      Garner: “So we can read between the lines is that what you’re saying?”

      Mitchell: “Year, well, you know, I operated and worked in a high risk environment”

      Disgusting. This meathead shouldn’t even be an MP and definitely shouldnt be the leader of a political party.

      • greywarshark 6.1.1

        I don’t think that having been in the defence forces and been in an active environment at the coalface is sufficient to say that someone shouldn’t be an MP.
        Look for something more against him, he certainly doesn’t impress me.

        • Fireblade 6.1.1.1

          Mark Mitchell wasn’t in the defence forces. He was a hired gun. This man chose to go there for the money, knowing he may have to kill and it appears he has. That’s disusting and I stand by my statements.

      • Chris 6.1.2

        I think it’s a perfect qualification for leader of the national party.

      • Ed 6.1.3

        And he isn’t honest.
        He won’t answer a straight question.
        So that deals with the “he tells the truth” line spouted by Jenna Lynch.

        Let’s assume he did kill people in that siege.
        Is New Zealand ok with a mercenary killer as their PM?
        Is New Zealand ok with someone who will people in their own country for money as their PM?

        More journalists must ask Mitchell this.
        How many people did you kill in Iraq?

  6. Andre 7

    Another possible thin slice of helping to manage CO2 in the atmosphere, as well as improving agriculture. Crushed basaltic rock is somewhat of a fertilizer, as well as a CO2 absorbent as part of its weathering process.

    https://cleantechnica.com/2018/02/19/transforming-agriculture-using-crushed-rock-can-slash-pesticide-use-increase-yields-promote-carbon-capture/

  7. greywarshark 8

    OMG the concept of using expensive CRSPR technology to enable wealthy people to keep replacing spent DNA each day so they can live as long as 500 years.

    Science like this is not the friend of ordinary people. Capitalism, self-centredness and greed is rampant, destructive.

    • alwyn 8.1

      If you are going to post something like this can you please post a link to where it is discussed by experts.
      You didn’t just make this up without any evidence it is even possible have you?

    • greywarshark 8.2

      Why should I do everybody’s work for them particularly trolls who just sit and tap out their disagreeable, sneering, uncaring, unhelpful and wilfully ignorant comments because they don’t give a damn about anyone anyway.

      Right having had my rant, I’ll give a clue from now on. The source was on Radionz this morning. But you can search it out, it will give you something to do, and keep your skills of looking for reliable sources and checking facts all brushed up and bright.

      I am not going to put so much time into my comments as they don’t get the attention when about something that affects us all and comes laden with sources deserves.

      • alwyn 8.2.1

        Thank you for your courtesy.
        I am pleased to see that you are having a cheerful morning and are in a good mood.
        Some of us read your comments you know, and want to follow up on them. They do get attention when they are interesting.
        Now, as that dreadful Americanism says.
        “Have a nice day, y’all”

  8. greywarshark 9

    Radionz
    Plastic bags 100 million in ten months of Foodstuff and Countdown supermarket chain before they withdraw them – in NZ alone. Referred to on news piece on micro particles of plastic found on Raglan beach but also found in some rock salt, honey, yikes.

    The spread of toxic growth over a lake and down a river from which farmers draw water was expected by Council’s water tests but not notified to the area so people could take defensive measures.

    • AsleepWhileWalking 9.1

      In “The Salt Fix” the author talks about nano-plastic particles in sea salt, and additives in table salt. Pink Himalayan salt OK.

  9. Philip Ferguson 10

    Demystifying bitcoin, another of those weird products of late capitalism:
    https://rdln.wordpress.com/2018/02/19/bitcoin-what-it-is-how-it-works-and-why-its-not-the-future/

  10. Venezia 11

    Jacqueline Rowarth has resigned position as EPA chief Scientist – at last! RNZ National Midday news.

    • greywarshark 11.1

      Just looking at agriculture and whos who and came across this interesting list of movers and shakers, with Jacqueline Rowarth at the top. These are people who have done much in NZ, some of it outright good and some of it not so. It would be a handy reference to the people behind our primary sector.
      https://idealog.co.nz/venture/2012/03/primary-farm-40

      • Macro 11.1.1

        Can you link to something that Rowarth has done that is good for NZ other than enriching farmers?

        • greywarshark 11.1.1.1

          You do that Macro. I just looked up some stuff, didn’t find anything much and put up the klist of 40 I think farming people who gathered together make iinteresting raading as a resource. As I said.

  11. savenz 12

    Interesting and scary theory by Martyn about how National could be planning to set up publicity and a win for their own far right party to fake some political friends and win the next election now that they have destroyed their allies.

    Why Mark Mitchell’s run at leadership is a scam & is this Tracy Watkin’s worst political column of all time?

    https://thedailyblog.co.nz/2018/02/19/why-mark-mitchells-run-at-leadership-is-a-scam-is-this-tracy-watkins-worst-political-column-of-all-time/#comment-417735

    • The Chairman 12.1

      Yes, seen that the other day. And now he has entered the race, this post has become far more interesting.

  12. greywarshark 13

    More knee trembling news about global finances. How far up can the shonky domino tower go. I think it all could fall really fast if one particular support got knocked over. It’s so hard to say when though, that’s the rub.

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/business/350776/is-the-global-economy-facing-a-financial-armageddon

    With global debt at a record high $US233-trillion and interest rates on the rise, Mr Botherway said a day of reckoning was due.
    “Global debt (318 percent of global GDP) is unprecedented, and we don’t know where that will end up. But there is economic precedence that suggests that those scenarios could be very bad.”

    Others are sceptical, however, arguing the doom and gloom was overblown.

    “The people who are saying these things are the same people who were saying that the global financial crisis was the end of the world, and who fairly regularly predict that really bad times are just around the corner,” Simplicity managing director Sam Stubbs said.

    New Zealand was vulnerable on some counts.
    Household indebtedness using a debt to income ratio was at a record high 168 percent;
    the official cash rate sits at a record low 1.75 percent;
    and Auckland’s house prices were considered severely unaffordable at 8.8 times higher than the average income….

    BNZ head of research Stephen Toplis said New Zealand was in much better shape to cope than most countries if things went wrong, with a growing economy underpinned by robust construction activity, record tourism and rising dairy prices.

    Actually Mr Toplis – We have peaked for tourism, which is beginning to poop on itself, construction activity is in the doldrums with Fletchers having shouldered everyone out of the market by undercutting them and so weakening our ability to do things to time and with the proper strength materials and practices, and rising dairy prices just mean that farmers are encouraged in their hell-bent confidence in themselves to be good businesspeople and cream the market.

    And milk is a most perishable product, and is using so many precious resources that the leaders may one day have to take defensive disappearing moves when people lose their tempers after they have lost everything else. If something goes wrong with milk exports, there is a fountain of white stuff to get rid of, can’t make it all into milk powder, it will pollute the country and the cows will be in pain if they suddenly can’t be milked. We should be easing down, going out of irrigation for dairy, that water should be charged for, going up each year like cigarettes do for the smoking addicts, the milking addicts should be taken through a slow withdrawal. With free financial advice on how to produce enough with the minimum of water and imported feed. Subsidies to organic producers also to enourage premium produce for specialised markets.

  13. adam 14

    Silly questions…

    If we pulled out of Afghanistan why are we still there, and how paternalistic is it to to call it mentoring?

    If ISIS has been destroyed in Iraq, why are we still there?

    http://www.army.mil.nz/about-us/what-we-do/deployments/current-deployments.htm

    http://www.nzdf.mil.nz/operations/

    Bring them home.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 14.1

      Both links broken at the moment. Have you checked Hansard for the official reasons?

      I doubt they make sense, but it makes sense to know what it is you’re trying to make sense of.

    • Ed 14.2

      Send them to rebuild Tonga.

    • McFlock 14.3

      Two issues:

      In general, defense force mentoring/training roles help build the stability of a state by assisting in the training (and training the trainers) of its security forces

      Secondly, the destruction of the ISIS state in Iraq is largely complete. The next stage is the more complex assymetric war with ISIS in Iraq. No frontline combat, but ambushes and bombings. So they still need decently trained Iraqi army and police.

      Make whatever moral judgements about it that you want, but those are reasonable answers to your question.

    • adam 15.1

      There is no h.r.c. she lost, get over it.

      There is only terrible policy, and broken election promises. And this along with many other issues, is another example of terrible policy

  14. eco maori 16

    These cops that are following me wherever I go are a bunch of red neck that’s all I’m saying as I’ll start swearing once a red neck allways a red neck ECO MAORI Says Ka kite ano

    • One Anonymous Bloke 16.1

      Keep it up mate. The more resources they put on you the easier it is for the rest of us.

  15. eco maori 17

    https://drive.google.com/file/d/1NthtQO4b4HZD61R3lKYow_b9T61jbVWr/view?usp=drives here’s a photo of that amazing picture on Pitau Road of a Maori Chief right behind one of my clients Ka pai Ka kite ano

    • eco maori 17.1

      TVNZ 1 NEWS great coverage of the human influence globe warming. Have we ever had a cyclone like Gita I think not Ka pai.
      Ka kite ano

      • eco maori 17.1.1

        I see the ECO MAORI effect everywhere TVNZ 1 NEWS the kumara never tells how sweet it is Ka pai

        • eco maori 17.1.1.1

          TV NZ 1 news that’s awesome graphics Dan

          • eco maori 17.1.1.1.1

            Those mokos in America actions makes ECO MAORI proud
            for the way they are stepping up to the line and Letting the World know that America gun laws are inhumane and idiocy. The national rifle association need to be neuter.
            I Back those mokos grandchildren 100% Kia kaha.
            Ka kite ano

            • eco maori 17.1.1.1.1.1

              Good evening Hillary & Jeremy my wife decided to bring 2 of our mokos home from the farm they are keeping us on our toes lol crusher a Jeremy lol
              Ka kite ano

  16. David Mac 18

    The new season of John Oliver’s show has started on HBO and show 1 is a ripper. John’s take on the Parkland School shootings.

    • savenz 18.1

      Great link. Heartening to see the kids demanding to be heard on this issue and calling out the BS.

      • David Mac 18.1.1

        Yeah, The Andy Griffith Show insight is gold. I liked the young woman’s quote too “I’m too young to vote, I am old enough to purchase a war weapon.”

  17. Ed 19

    Another reason not to eat meat .
    Antibiotics.
    And, yes they are heavily used in industrial farming here.

    “Nearly three quarters of the total use of antibiotics worldwide is thought to be on animals rather than humans, which raises serious questions over intensive farming and the potential effects on antibiotic resistance, which can easily be spread to people. Once resistance takes hold and drugs become ineffective, treating even common diseases becomes problematic. Dame Sally Davies, England’s chief medical officer, has warned that antibiotic resistance is one of the most severe threats facing humanity, and if strong action is not taken urgently that even routine operations such as hip replacements may become too dangerous.”

    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/feb/08/huge-levels-of-antibiotic-use-in-us-farming-revealed

  18. Ed 20

    Reduce the dairy herd.
    Rachel Stewart says by 80%.
    Or keep watching the slow death of our once amazing environment.

    https://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/ninetonoon/audio/2018632639/too-late-for-world-renowned-fresh-water-springs

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  • Another step towards restoring rights for screen production workers
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  • Enhanced Taskforce Green for Southland and South Otago
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  • Employers and Industry take the lead to connect students to vocational education
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  • Rental reforms a step closer with the introduction of the Residential Tenancies Amendment Bill
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    5 days ago
  • Biosecurity Minister announces world first eradication of pea weevil
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  • Temporary Accommodation Service activated for Southland flooding
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  • Bridges: Over-hyped and under-delivered
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  • Police to trial eye in the sky in Christchurch
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  • Momentum of trade talks continues with visits to promote Pacific and Middle East links
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  • Coalition Govt’s investment in Customs nets record drugs haul: 3 tonnes stopped at borders in 2019
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  • Separated scenic cycleway starts
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  • Earthquake-Prone Building loan scheme: eligibility criteria announced
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  • Travel restrictions to remain in place as coronavirus precaution
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  • Over $1 million to help Tairāwhiti youth into employment
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  • School attendance has to improve
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  • Crown and Moriori sign a Deed of Settlement
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  • Waikato Expressway driving towards completion
    Transport Minister Phil Twyford today with Māori King Tuheitia Pōtatau Te Wherowhero VII officially opened the country’s newest road, the $384 million Huntly section of the Waikato Expressway. The 15km four-lane highway with side and central safety barriers takes State Highway 1 east of Huntly town, across lowlands and streams ...
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  • Kaupapa Māori approach for homelessness
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  • Government steps up action to prevent homelessness
    1000 new transitional housing places delivered by end of year to reduce demand for emergency motel accommodation. Introduce 25% of income payment, after 7 days, for those in emergency motel accommodation to bring in line with other forms of accommodation support. Over $70m extra to programmes that prevents those at ...
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