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Open mike 20/08/2022

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, August 20th, 2022 - 135 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:


Open mike is your post.

For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

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

Step up to the mike …

135 comments on “Open mike 20/08/2022 ”

  1. PsyclingLeft.Always 2

    Police are investigating alleged assaults by an orchard owner against migrant workers in Central Otago, including an incident where a worker says he was made to lie on the floor, stood on, and sworn at.

    Another Pacific Island worker alleged he had his ear pulled by the same man, while others say he regularly called the workers names including calling one man “lazy arse”.

    There was an “atmosphere of fear” at the farm they were assigned to, the workers told investigators from the Human Rights Commission, but they didn’t know how to report their problems, and so they stayed quiet for six months, until they moved north earlier this year.

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/300659862/stood-on-and-sworn-at-police-investigate-alleged-assault-on-migrant-workers

    An investigation by Equal Employment Opportunities Commissioner Saunoamaali'i Karanina Sumeo found that migrant horticulture workers are living in cold, damp and overcrowded housing, have been denied paid sick leave after falling ill and have faced excessive restrictions placed on them by employers.

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/300657983/human-rights-abuses-of-rse-workers-completely-unacceptable?rm=a

    Jerf van Beek

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/300093382/leading-horticulture-figure-jerf-van-beek-stood-down-in-wake-of-inquiry-into-migrant-worker-exploitation?rm=a

    Modern day slavery NZ : Its here…and a disgusting blight on our Orchards,Vineyards and Farms.

    Kiwis wouldnt ever put up with working for these scum bags…..

    National fuckwits Blinglish and sir Key said that Kiwis dont WANT to work !

    Indeed, not for these type of maggot….

    Please…. Stand Up for our Brother and Sister Workers !

  2. Just a thought for a Saturday morning (and the application of a fair amount to hindsight).

    I think the Labour Party has done remarkably well after their 2020 landslide victory, managing all the 65 hyper egos that constitute the parliamentary party.

    A number of these egos were new to the rigours of parliamentary life, swept in on the wave of popular approval for the way the Coalition handled the pandemic.

    Inevitably (with hindsight again) some of these egos will ignore Keith Holyoak’s advice to ‘breathe through your nose.’

    That only one has crashed and burned is testament to a well-managed ship of state, to which much praise must go to the PM and her office. If only one ‘misfit’ got through the selection process and made it into the House this shows, IMO, good management processes.

    Superb, if you compare this with other parties, with particular reference to the Upfendoff case, where the selection panel knew of the candidate’s short-comings but chose not to tell the electorate.

    It really can’t be easy to manage a large number of new and inflated egos in the context of the routine of government. So, generally, well done, Labour.

  3. weka 4

    Morning everyone.

    • Macro 4.1

      And those cats were only having a cat nap! But they can be very heavy sleepers 🐱https://media.tenor.com/WpzY3WQvRNgAAAAM/cat-sleep.gif

    • Incognito 4.2

      With cats it is mind over matter, especially when they want to be fed and use the Force on their hapless owners feeders & carers.

  4. DB Brown 5

    While we get distracted by brazen nutjobs, there may be stealth lunacy creeping in the back door.

    Christo-fascism has destroyed the GOP in America and riddled Australia's Liberals. By stealth or by arrogance, they don't care, they just want power. Are we subject to the same steady takeover from delusional cult members?

    • Ad 5.1

      THe FBI investigation for sex crimes at the Southern Baptist Convention is the play to watch.

      Unprecedented and right into the heart of darkness.

      • DB Brown 5.1.1

        God forgives all for a vote and a token fee.

        Those who feel they only answer to a higher authority often behave very lowly.

    • Drowsy M. Kram 5.2

      What happens next in the saga of Scott Morrison and his secret ministries? Stay tuned for Monday [20 August 2022]

      Both sides need to rebuild trust

      For those who remain, they will be faced with rebuilding the trust of a public weary of political scandals.

      And for Labor, there's only so long they can wallow in their opponent's misfortune.

      The challenge it faces is to rebuild the trust the nation puts in politicians to govern transparently.

      Ex PM Morrison's machinations are an object lesson in how to circumvent democratic conventions, and undermine trust in all politicians and political institutions.

      ANZ loses the Key to transparency
      Oh and there’s that issue of the ANZ Bank selling a house to then CEO David Hisco’s wife for more than $3 million less than it was worth back in 2017 – a Hisco-related perks issue that Sir John failed to mention in last month’s press conference into his former CEO’s expenses.

      His pro-transparency press conference.

      That was Then, This is Now #28 – John Key on transparency

    • swordfish 5.3

      .

      By stealth or by arrogance, they don't care, they just want power. Are we subject to the same steady takeover from delusional cult members?

      An almost perfect description of the Critical Theory Cult … Wokedom relatively weak among the wider population … but dominant among cultural, political & administrative elites … a self-interested top-down authoritarian PMC vanity project guaranteed to create new forms of social injustice … in key respects, the antithesis of traditional liberal, universalist, egalitarian Social Democracy.

      Ironically, you’re – at the very least – Cult-adjacent.

    • Descendant Of Smith 5.4

      I've been critical of the infiltration of school boards by the religious for years and sat on boards myself to help negate their influence.

      There was a list published in the media 15 or so years ago of a list of 40 or so wealthy fundamentalist Americans who decided that New Zealand was the appropriate bolt-hole – and small enough to influence government – that they would move here. I recall there was one who had bible messages on his burger chains cups, etc on the list and about 5 had been granted residency under at that point

      I also recall ACT having to suddenly sort out quite a few candidates for one election some years back as well as 5 or 6 were not NZ residents.

      I try hard not to fall down conspiracy rabbit holes but I do suspect with the plethora of American style politics and policy's – three strikes, pay less tax, anti-government, increasing homelessness and putting homeless in motels a la The Florida Project and so on it has been going on for a while.

      I've hunted a few times for that list thinking I should see how many have residency now but have never been able to find it again.

      • Patricia Bremner 5.4.1

        YesD.O.S The Evangelical mob tried to take over a School in Rotorua, but the staff and parents managed to avoid that, in the 90s We had a couple on our Board, and when I read them the secular rules for NZ schools I became Satan's sister lol. Those folk are dispersed now and people became wary of their affiliations. I would like to see that List. There may be a few surprises.

  5. weka 6

    • joe90 6.1

      Debate me, bro!

      Idiots.

    • mauī 6.2

      "Reality is just not the point".. Yet the Platform interviewed the main protagonists of the Stuff – Fire and Fury doco, and at least attempted to test them, question them and get their side of the story, which I thought is a basic of journalism to get both sides. Something which stuff appeared to go out of their way not to do.

      • weka 6.2.1

        Fire and Fury literally showed the protestors in their own words. And interviewed some of them.

        • Robert Guyton 6.2.1.1

          They seemed stunned, confused, lost.

        • Drowsy M. Kram 6.2.1.2

          There's no pleasing some people sad

        • mauī 6.2.1.3

          And you can literally find angry commentary made in any protest, at the extreme ends. Have we forgotten about Hone Harawira? At least he was usually given right of reply by the mainstream media.

          I'm at a loss to understand how it can be called fair, even believable journalism. Taking sound bites from people, putting them alongside scary music and 1984 imagery, with biased expert commentary who make tenuous links is, dare I say it Alex Jones stuff.

          • Robert Guyton 6.2.1.3.1

            Don't really see them hounding the media off the scene though. The angry, middle-aged woman was an eye-opener – most of all, to herself, I imagine, were she to watch the footage. That's quite disturbing.

          • DB Brown 6.2.1.3.2

            We all listened to that garbage first hand, day in, day out. You can deny it was the stuff of the protest all you like but it came out of the mouths of family, friends, former friends, flatmates and other persons starting with F. Then they concentrated the stupid on parliament grounds till it was stupid fuck plus.

            A steady stream of implied threats "you shall pay", "you will see", and absolute nonsense "you're a government shill", "Jabcinda's a man", "where's Clark" while they 'flood the zone' aka send you all manner of bullshit earnestly pleading you read some incoherent toddlers 'research' or listen to endless clips where they trot out some knee surgeon to talk viruses to an avon salesperson for two fucking hours.

            Perhaps you think we didn't hear the underlying message:

            'Loss of trust in state institutions'
            'Loss of trust in corporations'
            'Loss of trust in science'
            'Poor mental health funding'
            'Institutionalised minority bashing'

            and 'sociopathic white supremacists co-opt locally aggrieved persons and promise 'freedom' in exchange for sanity, social standing and reality'.

            Contrary to popular opinion, we are not asleep.

            • Descendant Of Smith 6.2.1.3.2.1

              "locally aggrieved persons"

              to be honest many of the rabbit (rabid) hole fallers aren't aggrieved about anything. They have never protested in their lives or stood up against power or previously made a stand.

              It is as weird as shit as to why they have suddenly turned vociferous spouting nonsense they know little about, quoting charlatans as truth-seekers and continually calling me and others sheep all the while displaying cultish behaviour.

              You do really get a sense of the algorithms in the social media space moving from drip-feeding knowing you are pregnant before your husband does five or six years ago to a torrent of self perpetuating dribble once you have dipped your toes in the conspiracy water. I used to get a nice and surprising mix of different recommendations in my various feeds that were useful. The algorithms are definitely much more aggressive and focussed now than they used to be. I started noticing this a few years back after a family member was killed in a workplace accident. On their birthday and anniversary of their death family would get inundated with advertising for the workplace they died in causing further anguish and reminders to the point we just don't go online if we can help it those days. Their name. death and the workplace are forever linked together in internet land.

              I notice it only takes one query about something now to get advertising around that item and how connected it is across the different platforms – look something up in a retail shop – within less than an hour you are getting ads on Facebook or youtube or Stuff for the same or similar items.

              I have no doubt with facial recognition you will be starting to see advertising in places like movie theatres targeted to the actual shopping habits of the people who are at that session.

              The speed, accuracy and intenseness of the algorithms needs to be tempered in some way – maybe a compulsory randomness and apposite generator built in that maybe generates 50% of the recommendations to stop the spiraling.

              • DB Brown

                You make interesting and valid points. Yes, some of the grievances were fictional (many, in fact), but the underlying angst (whatever the cause) was there to be tapped into.

                I was contemplating the algorithm issue recently. Spying is all, of course, about money (pissant proxy power) and power (information being power).

                Corporations make a lot of money herding us into easily reachable demographics so all this spying is not going to stop unless governments legislate themselves a spine (lol) or public backlash is so great it affects bottom line (more likely) or – we build something better?

                Until I see a better model where we get useful info piped to us but are not spied on constantly… I'm all for making spying online illegal until a legal case for each case can be made. NOT a financial case, a case for the 'greater good'.

                Some kind of filter that lets our computer know – this is a public service vs – this is a public nuisance. Perhaps.

  6. Anne 7

    I didn't see Sharma's latest offering on this morning's TV3 "The Nation", but I did see the debate. Janet Wilson, Judith Collin's former press secretary, was the only one who was mildly reasonable. The young PR woman had no idea what she was talking about. But the piéce de resistance was Josie Pagani – the woman who has spent the last 10 years wreaking revenge on Labour because they failed to pamper her inflated ego.

    Venom dripped from her mouth, particularly towards Jacinda Ardern. She claimed Labour had been asking for it because their back-benchers have nothing to do but sit around all day twiddling their thumbs. That is a lie! I have seen back-benchers in various stages of exhaustion over the years because they have so much to do. They all have background portfolio responsibilities and are expected to sit on several select committees .

    No-one raised the communication difficulties everyone has experienced since the start of the pandemic. Oh no, that would spoil the punch-up.

    • Bearded Git 7.1

      What gets me is the media brings Pagani on as someone from the Left, where she clearly now favours the Right.

      • PsyclingLeft.Always 7.1.1

        Or…was always heading Right. While white-anting Labour for all she was worth. TBH I'd never heard of her until 2 elections ago. I asked on the Standard about her…and really, her true Blue colour was pretty much known

      • alwyn 7.1.2

        I would think it is more accurate to say that Pagani can validly use Jim Anderton's comment. "I didn't leave the Labour Party. The Labour Party left me".

        The party moved in different directions of course. I Jim's case it moved to the centre. In Pagani's case I imagine she thinks that the Party has moved to a rather odd combination of hard left opinions and racism.

        That would seem to be an accurate description as far as I can see.

        • Stuart Munro 7.1.2.1

          Anderton could make the claim with some justice – Pagani – not so much.

          Labour has taken some strange turns, but it does seem to be gradually finding its way home.

          Pagani, like fellow rump Blairite Starmer, inspires nothing but contempt.

        • Incognito 7.1.2.2

          You can imagine what Pagani thinks; I can only imagine what you think and since you’re commenting here, only relevant is what you think and write here – hiding behind other people’s thoughts or feelings is weak and pathetic and reeks of cowardice. Be a real man and tell us how you really feel about the Labour Party …

          • alwyn 7.1.2.2.1

            What do I think of the Labour Party?

            I voted for them in quite a lot of the elections in the last 40 or so years. In fact I voted for them in 1981, 1984, 1987, 1999 and 2002. Why not recently? Because they are quite useless and they have been a disaster for New Zealand.

            I wanted to be able to vote for them in 2017, because no Government should have more than 3 consecutive terms, but I thought they were completely incapable of forming a decent Government. I have been proved right.

            Does that answer your question?

            • Incognito 7.1.2.2.1.1

              At least, it is a more honest answer, thank you.

            • Patricia Bremner 7.1.2.2.1.2

              Alwyn, give us your version of "A decent Government"

              • alwyn

                That isn't a moral description of course. An alternative word would be competent. It is a Government that does, on time and at a reasonable price, carry out the activities required of it. It also only does the things that are required and are beneficial to society.

                I regard these sort of things as ones which demonstrate that the current lot are incapable of doing a decent job.

                Kiwibuild. The amalgamation of the Polytechs, Providing an effective health system. Reducing homelessness. Providing suitable roading. Reducing violence in communities. Providing sensible public transport. etc, etc.

      • observer 7.1.3

        It's not even about left or right.

        Josie Pagani's bitter commentary on Ardern is only about one thing: "It should have been me!".

        If I were a cartoonist I'd draw her at the back of the church, yelling while the voters put the wedding ring on Bride Jacinda's finger.

        • Anne 7.1.3.1

          She once claimed to have known Britain's Prince Edward but decided he wasn't the right one for her. Not sure what P. E. thought about it. 😮

        • newsense 7.1.3.2

          And again. Your name is most apt in the sense of your most accurate observations.

          Jacinda got elected and hung in through plenty of grim times and then had some luck with the final circumstances.

          But also it worked because of a lack of complication in some of her thoughts and presentation of them. And sure she’s a post Key figure rather than a partisan firebrand, but she’s done well on many many things.

  7. joe90 8

    Consequences.

    (but why weren't they voting before?)

    Not Just Kansas; Women Motivated to Vote in States with Repro Rights at Risk

    As we detailed in our analysis last week, the electorate in Kansas changed dramatically in the days after the Supreme Court’s Dobbs decision leaked. Kansans turned out in record numbers in the primary and delivered a victory for abortion rights, a win fueled by Democrats out registering Republicans by 9 points since the Dobbs decision was announced, with a staggering 70% of all new registrants being women.

    Now, as we move ahead through additional state primaries and toward the midterm elections, there is evidence that what happened in Kansas isn’t an outlier. In states like Wisconsin and Michigan where reproductive rights are at stake this year, we’re seeing a meaningful gender gap in registration, whereby women are out-registering men by significant margins. In states like Rhode Island and New York where reproductive rights are protected by Democratic leaders in government, no gender gap exists.

    https://insights.targetsmart.com/not-just-kansas-women-motivated-to-vote-in-states-with-repro-rights-at-risk.html

    • arkie 8.1

      Republican crises of conscience aren't much help now, but good to see some have a conscience:

      Collins revealed that he had sleepless nights after learning that doctors refused to extract the fetus from a 19-year-old woman whose water broke at 15 weeks of pregnancy.

      "That weighs on me," Collins remarked. "I voted for that bill. These are affecting people and we're having a meeting about this. That whole week I did not sleep."

      https://www.rawstory.com/south-carolina-abortion-ban/

    • DB Brown 8.2

      There's also lot of angry Dad's now motivated to vote against GOP.

      I had hoped their implosion/division (Truth vs Trump) would seal the GOP's fate – so I could shallowly have a told you so moment to some TS authors, but attacking women's rights might be the actual straw that breaks the elephants back.

      • joe90 8.2.1

        Accurate or not, the thought is nice.

  8. Treetop 9

    I have given the Sharma McAnulty relationship a bit of thought. McAnulty was a list MP for a term and he was selected as a junior whip. In the 2020 election he won the seat of Wairarapa and became an electorate MP and a chief government whip. Sharma and McAnulty are of similar age and they possibly clashed.

    I do think that McAnulty did not have enough time in Parliament to have been the wisest pick to become a chief government whip. I do think that Sharma needed to be careful about anything he states.

    I would like to see an independent inquiry into how McAnulty handled Sharma.

    Politics is about team play and not ego play.

    • Populuxe1 9.1

      Unlike Sharma he was actually elected by his constituency and worked his way up through the system.

      • Treetop 9.1.1

        Sharma is the electorate MP for Hamilton West. Sharma is no slacker when it comes to proving he can work hard and for the benefit of people. Medical school and some surgical training is not for the faint hearted.

        • Peter 9.1.1.1

          Doctors are not god.

          Getting into medical school is hard enough in the first place let alone the rigours of what comes next. Obviously many excellent candidates don't make the cut to even train to be doctors. Undoubtedly many who miss out would have made fine doctors.

          That's why, when some doctor 'goes astray' and does something bewilderingly dumb, or shows human frailties beyond expectation, we see clearly that the qualities we wish all doctors had are not present in all of them.

          We ascribe some sort of 'super person' status to them. We give them the benefit of the doubt – "oh, but he's a doctor, he wouldn't do that."

          Two eye doctors have been in the news in the past week to do with terrible incidents. Another in the past fortnight has made the news for 'inappropriate behaviour' to do with female patients.

          One shocking case most clearly demonstrating a 'fall from grace' involved a young doctor. For all the effort, dedication and intelligence to get to be a doctor, how could it be as it was and end as it did?

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Murder_of_Amber-Rose_Rush

          • Treetop 9.1.1.1.1

            Doctors are not god. I have read enough Health and Disability Commission decisions to know that. I also read about the conduct of doctors in the media.

      • Belladonna 9.1.2

        Look, I get that you don't like Sharma – but please stick to the actual facts.
        Sharma is indeed an electorate MP for Hamilton West, just as McAnulty is for Wairarapa.

    • psych nurse 9.2

      Sharma is male, he's a Doctor of medicine, they all think they are god. They only have to be in an organization for five minutes to expect to be in charge of everything.

      He probably expected to have an important role and hasn't been promoted above his competency. All nurses can identify the type.

      • Anne 9.2.1

        When I was in hospital earlier this year frown I said to the nurse… "but the surgeon said such and such." The nurse gave me a piercing look and said in all seriousness… "Don't take any notice of the surgeons. They haven't a clue what is going on." surprise

        I had the impression it was the nurses who run the hospitals, not the doctors and surgeons.

      • Treetop 9.2.2

        When it came to the care an ex partner received from a DHB the nursing staff showed diligence and the doctors made error after error. Went in for a simple op, had 3 surgeries in a week and the third surgery was for a treatment injury. Returned from surgery moribund and died 3 hours later.

        Why take a dying person to theatre?

    • newsense 9.3

      You can see by the way Sharma has conducted himself that he is unscrupulous.

      He lied about travel allowances and ramped everything up to 11. The whips office is there to help him, but he was unhappy and again here he is unhappy. Even in this he is behaving not as someone who has a shred of legitimacy, but someone who is trying to spread shit everywhere. He’s made claims and thrown insults and perjoratives, drip fed things and not provided evidence.

      He’s performing a hit job, nothing more.

      Im sure there are a lot of people who voted for him who are feeling particularly betrayed. But again the clear message is that this is about him. I mean the piece in Stuff comparing him to Rishi Sunak, the billionaire who propped up Boris, shows the grandiosity of his support and its lack of morals.

      If there was a basis for anything more I’m sure it will happen. Currently there’s nothing.

      Labour needs to select a strong candidate in Hamilton West and fight the good fight.

      • Treetop 9.3.1

        I do think that Sharma is bright enough to know what defamation is.

        Will McAnulty take a defamation case against Sharma?

        I have not read the Sunak comparison.

        • newsense 9.3.1.1

          He knows that Labour won’t give him the oxygen of a case. Politically it’s hard to know what motivates him.

          But the lady who defended him based on ethnicity reminded me of Morgan Godfrey pining for a Maori PM and thinking Shane Jones was the closest chance, despite everything.

          I don’t think he’s worried about his financial future, but maybe MPs life is more exciting than GP practice and he’d like it to continue.

    • Peter 9.4

      I too have given the Sharma McAnulty relationship a bit of thought.

      I have concluded all I know is stuff through various media and to make some judgement about how MacAnulty operates as whip or any other role is presumptuous. Or is that 'preposterous.'

      The context of your comment "Politics is about team play and not ego play," reads as though a judgement has been made about and he is unsuitable for his job.

      An independent inquiry into how McAnulty handled Sharma? How about independent inquiries on every MP who is bad mouthed by someone?

      • observer 9.4.1

        Newshub gave Sharma a platform, and then belatedly realised they should do some fact-checking:

        https://twitter.com/NewshubNationNZ/status/1560769684085313538

        They're starting to work out (slowly) that a guy who promises "hundreds of pages" of evidence and delivers none, a guy who makes private messages public, a guy who secretly records his colleagues, a guy who is too busy to speak to the PM or caucus but suddenly available for media on his own terms …

        … just might not be a reliable truth-teller.

      • Treetop 9.4.2

        Sharma could sharpen up his team skills. The government needs to show transparency on what transpired between McAnulty and Sharma. Having a big ego is not the way to go. Dealing with the facts is the way to go.

    • Incognito 9.5

      Politics is about team play and not ego play.

      Well said, there's no I in politics!

    • Patricia Bremner 9.6

      Treetop McAnulty was in Parliament for 3 years before Sharma.

      • Treetop 9.6.1

        Yes and as a list MP.

        I do think there is a difference between an electorate and a list MP when it turns to custard. One requires a by election the other is a space on a list.

  9. Kat 10

    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/lifestyle/national-deputy-leader-nicola-willis-as-youve-never-seen-her-well-survive-anything/TGOU2ON576RE3SZHUOUCZ7QT6M/

    "Successful in the real world at business, family oriented, authentic, capable, hard working, competent and a parent of 4 children.

    The sort of politician NZ needs to heal the deep division and damage embedded into our country over the past 5 years……..

    Is this Nicolamania in the making……..

    • Drowsy M. Kram 10.1

      The sort of politician NZ needs to heal the deep division and damage embedded into our country over the past 5 years……..

      Where's that Nicolamania (nice) quote come from, and does columnist Cloe Willetts, or indeed National's Nicola Willis, have an opinion on the nature and cause(s) of "the deep division and damage" now apparently "embedded into our country"?

      We’ll survive anything!” – believe it.

      If another meteorite hit the Earth, I’d be more worried for humans than for cockroaches.
      https://theconversation.com/how-did-cockroaches-survive-the-asteroid-that-led-to-the-extinction-of-dinosaurs-177118

      • Kat 10.1.1

        The Nicolamania quote comes from the comments to the article and appears to reflect the general opinions of the target audience. It is obviously a puff piece to bolster the professional but homely/family image of the deputy leader of the National party. And of course they will have an opinion on the nature and causes, its all the Ardern govts fault.

    • AB 10.2

      Ruth Richardson's favourite recipe left in the microwave for 25 years and now ready to eat (apparently). The clever bit is that 25 years on 'high' doesn't spoil the meal, because when you open the container it's always empty. Someone else ate it ages ago. All that matters is the mountain of blather that surrounds, justifies and transcendentally sanctifies the (notional) meal with a pseudo-religious zeal.

    • Robert Guyton 10.3

      The "pyjama party movie night' image is terrifying!

  10. Treetop 11

    Just to add that the current Chief Government Whip is Duncan Webb, he took on the role 14 June 2022. Webb is age 55 and has been a lawyer.

    I have found in life that the right thing to do when there is a dispute which will not go away is to establish why it has occurred.

    • Chess Player 11.1

      I don't understand the reluctance to have an inquiry, even if there is not much to inquire into, as it's a well-understood mechanism in politics to take the heat out of things.

      Maybe Ardern is hoping that the Greens will provide a distraction soon, when they have their big vote between James Shaw and checks notes James Shaw.

      • Robert Guyton 11.1.1

        I reckon it'll be James, but a week is a long time in politics.

      • observer 11.1.2

        it's a well-understood mechanism in politics to take the heat out of things.

        Well, yes. But it requires an agreed understanding of the issue – in effect, of the simple meaning of words.

        If (for example) there's an allegation that MP X spent public money on a private trip, which has happened in Parliament before, then there is something to investigate. Concrete facts. The answer is usually "it was against the rules", or "it was technically within the rules but not a good look".

        But the issue Sharma claims is "bullying" is defined by him as "something that happens to me". He has rejected any suggestion at all that he might ever have been at fault during the past 2 years, despite the testimony of his own staffers. Therefore, there is no possible outcome to an "independent inquiry" that will satisfy Gaurav Sharma. He is never going to accept a finding that (for example) …

        "party whips did not behave in a way that is any different from their predecessors, but these expectations should now be updated for a modern workplace" … and also "Sharma had demands of his staff that created unnecessary stress, and that should have been handled better."

        That kind of outcome, balanced but with mild criticism, would get a very predictable response from a man who has no self-awareness whatsoever. He is the only victim, and an "independent inquiry" must say so.

        Anything else, and he'd be demanding an "independent inquiry" into the "independent inquiry", which was carried out by a Labour stooge, etc, etc, etc.

        Labour/Ardern have given up on him, and so he's not worth any more of their time. That judgement is hard to argue with.

        • newsense 11.1.2.1

          Spot on observer.

        • Chess Player 11.1.2.2

          Well, yes. But it requires an agreed understanding of the issue – in effect, of the simple meaning of words.

          Nope – it just requires someone to say 'let's have an inquiry'.

          • observer 11.1.2.2.1

            An inquiry without terms of reference? There's a reason that never happens. As you well know.

            I really don't think you're stupid so it's tiresome when you pretend to be.

      • Bearded Git 11.1.3

        There is no evidence supporting the need for an enquiry; simply wild, vindictive and bitter accusations.

        Tell me what the parameters would be Chess?

        • Incognito 11.1.3.1

          B&W

        • Chess Player 11.1.3.2

          The parameters would be:

          An independent arbiter

          He says this, and presents evidence

          They say that, and present evidence

          Arbiter rules

          Quite easy really – should be really quick

          Much quicker than what’s happening now

          Of course, you do have to find a trusted, independent, arbiter

          • observer 11.1.3.2.1

            It seems you've already forgotten what Sharma has alleged.

            Here's his original complaint:

            https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/129551695/labour-mp-gaurav-sharma-launches-broadside-as-parliamentary-service-party-whips-work-through-employment-matters

            "Sharma suggested some of the most powerful offices in Parliament were working to enforce a culture of fear and bullying where MPs felt that they could not speak freely.

            He named “the whip’s office, the offices of the leaders of various parties, along with the Office of the Leader of the Opposition and the Prime Minister's Office”.

            Those leaders alongside Parliamentary Service were allowing for the bullying of MPs and staff members, which he said had become “rampant”. No evidence to support this claim was provided.

            He said Parliamentary Service was led by people whose self-interest was stopping it from upholding the proper running of Parliament. He went further, saying the service itself was being “used” by party whips to “bully and harass their MPs”."

            (italics added)

            So there should be an inquiry into Parl Service, the offices of leaders of at least 2 parties, and the whips. That makes it bigger than even the Francis report.

            And all based on claims by one unhappy MP who consistently refuses to offer evidence.

            It doesn't get anywhere near the threshold required. There's a reason courts have pre-trial hearings and don't clog up the system with every vexatious litigant. The world does not revolve around one angry man.

            • Chess Player 11.1.3.2.1.1

              Well, I guess you either have the inquiry and come to a swift resolution, or, you continue to down-play the accusations and allow the festering boil to grow.

              If Ardern had taken this to an inquiry, no-one would be talking about this now, as we all know inquiries are like working groups – a lengthy sentence to obscurity.

              However, a mistake was made with Ardern's decision-making, and the 'threshold' you refer to will soon be breached.

              Not a threshold of evidence, but a threshold of perception.

              And with humans, perception is ultimately more powerful than mere 'evidence'.

            • Bearded Git 11.1.3.2.1.2

              Excellent Observer.

              Chess: if you read what Observer says above you surely can see that an inquiry would be a joke.

              Sharma’s ego and sense of entitlement have got out of hand; he has, in reality, made a fool of himself. Labour are well rid of him.

              Hoskin with his attempt to smear Jacinda as a liar via his ZB interview with Sharma, should hang his head in shame, though I guess he doesn’t know the meaning of the word.

        • Ad 11.1.3.3

          Lock Ardern and Sharma in a shipping container overnight.

          Who emerges, wins.

          My bet is Ardern.

    • Ad 11.2

      There's going to be an inquiry whether Labour thinks it's justified or not.

      Sharma will now go to this Commissioner:

      Former Auditor-General Appointed As Independent Commissioner For Parliamentary Standards Appointed | Scoop News

      Also Boshier as Ombudsman will I think step in for Sharma and the blatant injustice of the "non-invited" job review with all others in Caucus.

      Next step Employment Tribunal I expect.

      • Treetop 11.2.1

        Good luck to Provost on her new appointment. The morale in the police is not that great when it comes to being degraded or reporting incidents of bullying amoung the ranks.

  11. Ad 12

    Forget Sharma.

    The most important things to New Zealanders are:

    inflation / cost of living (53%), closely followed by

    – housing / price of housing (51%), followed by

    – healthcare / hospitals (27%), and

    – petrol prices (25%)

    That was from a sample over 1000 from February this year. It won't have changed.

    Got back on message Ardern and show us what good difference you are making.

  12. Ad 13

    Raising the middle finger to NZTA one more time, Bevan Woodward gets a judicial review going against the decision to not even trial cycling over the Auckland Harbour Bridge, despite a direct request from the Minister of Transport.

    Legal challenge over Auckland Harbour Bridge cycling trial (1news.co.nz)

    Bevan has spent 10 years on this already and will likely never give up.

    • Belladonna 13.1

      Yeah. As a tax and/or ratepayer (not sure which side will be picking up the legal bills) I'm not exactly enthralled by his crusade.

      And, as someone who regularly travels around Auckland and sees the behaviour of both motor vehicle drivers (not just cars – buses, vans, motorcycles), AND cyclists (some of whom seem to have an active deathwish) – I am firmly on the side of Waka Kotahi.

      Opening up a single lane on the Auckland Harbour Bridge to cyclists, on the proposed trial basis (i.e. without any significant safety infrastructure) really is opening the gates to a multiple-victim tragedy.

      • Ad 13.1.1

        NZTA needs to deliver sunlight and the High Court is the best place for it. Let's see the chance to see their design consultants shredded.

        NZTA have actively conspired to kill a cycleway over the harbour for the best part of 15 years.

        They have found technical reasons to kill at least four proposals. The first of which didn't require NZTA funding and which Bevan Woodward led himself. Each time NZTA ensured there was little for the Minister to defend and much in the public arena for ZB listeners to froth about. They are obviously waging a successful war against this Minister.

        NZTA and indeed Kiwirail and AT have managed to generate cycleways on every other major arterial in Auckland including the motorways and railways, but not the Harbour Bridge.

        Roche the NZTA Chair is well overdue for replacing as is most of the Board – particularly after multiple fiascos and blowouts this term: Transmission Gully, Northern Gateway, Waikato Expressway, and a comprehensive inability to enable national network resilience in a wet winter.

        • Poission 13.1.1.1

          The science is against cyclists on the bridge,as the road amplifies the wind shear.

          https://www.mdpi.com/2076-3417/11/9/3982

          Make him provide a surety against costs.

          • Ad 13.1.1.1.1

            The number of times I've been on a major infrastructure job and some 50 year old dork comes up and says "Nah mate this is crap I would have done it this way cos my mate is an Injinuur', never fails to amaze me.

            We have had four feasible and costed proposals already.

            The wind shear was easily accounted for on Grafton Bridge when they put shields on it, same on the Crimson Cycleway, same on multiple others.

            When it is necessary to stop traffic on the Auckland Harbour Bridge for wind, they do so. Happens every year.

            • Poission 13.1.1.1.1.1

              There is no money,we are already an at risk economy with our CA deficit blowout,and serious questions are being asked about the quangos (ratings).

              The NZ $ depreciated >4 % this week alone over 15% in the last 12 months.when you can come up with a single project that will be delivered on time and under budget,and without significant underestimated problems for maintenance or design f/ups.And at the end of the day it has no economic advantage.

              • Ad

                1-in-100 year climate events don't wait for us to find the money.

                "Since we don't have the money, we're going to have to think." – Lord Rutherford.

                • Poission

                  Rutherford also said there was Physics and stamp collecting,as it is physically impossible to ride a pushbike carbon free (the respiration problem) there are better opportunities for investment.

        • Belladonna 13.1.1.2

          So if NZTA have worked effectively, in partnership with other agencies, to implement cycleways alongside other highways (Northwestern, etc.) – it's hardly feasible to say that they are anti-cycleways. Perhaps, just perhaps, they really do have a point that this one is too dangerous and/or disruptive to the regular flow of traffic. Perhaps, indeed, 'A bridge too far'

          • Ad 13.1.1.2.1

            If an NZTA engineer was instructed to, they would put a canal system for yachts on the top of Mt Cook. They've bored through basalt 10 metres thick at Waterview, formed curved lanes 20 metres in the air at 90 degree curves at Pt Chev, designed whole new rail+road tunnels for the Waitemata, and are currently designing underground rail systems multiple kilometres long at over $500m a kilometre in Light Rail.

            That they have found a unique design problem that is too hard for them is preposterous.

            There's no doubt these things are expensive. The Petone and Riverlink systems are stupendous, and the New Lynn to Avondale one was up there. So price it up team.

            Bring on the High Court.

            • Belladonna 13.1.1.2.1.1

              So, not cost-effective either.

              Why we can't just put in a PT option to get cycles across the harbour bridge at 1 millionth of the cost, beats me!

              It would be cheap and easy to put in a cycle shuttle, looping from outside the old AHB offices at Northcote Point, across the bridge, off at Shelly Beach Road and with drop off and pick up at Curran St.

              Run it every 10 minutes (or more frequently if the demand picks up), during peak hours, and every 30 minutes the rest of the time. Run more frequent services on weekends and/or public holidays to accommodate the recreational cyclists.

              Cyclists cycle up to the pick up point at Northcote point and from the drop off point in Westhaven. Functionally exactly the same as the many overseas models where you cycle to the train station, load your bike, and cycle again when you get off.

              Virtually no infrastructural changes required. Cyclists can demonstrate the actual demand in both short and long term. Which gives actual figures for planning for a long term cycle-path in association with the already-in-planning new harbour crossing.

              Actually implementing it (and running it fees free for the first couple of years) would probably be cheaper than a single court case.

              • Ad

                Every step you walk up Albert Street in Auckland's CBD, now costs us about $1.5 million. Whatever cost-effective is. Get your Gold Card ready for that one in 2025.

  13. pat 14

    An exceptionally good interview with Shamubeel Eaqub on housing in NZ where he makes the point the political centre no longer exists.

    If he is correct then that would force a fundamental change for how politics is conducted in NZ.

    https://www.interest.co.nz/property/117201/economist-shamubeel-eaqub-whats-going-housing-market-and-why-hes-now-optimistic

    • Belladonna 14.1

      Listening now, but haven't forgotten that Eaqub headlined in 2012 about why people should rent, not buy. I bet anyone who listened to him is damn sorry.

      He subsequently did a volte-face and bought in 2017.

      Economists, by and large, aren't really terribly good at predicting what is going to happen.

      • pat 14.1.1

        Economists are not alone in that.

        And he was not alone in predicting property crashes post GFC….there were plenty around at the time.

        • Belladonna 14.1.1.1

          I think that that GFC experience is reinforcing the NZ belief that house-price corrections are short term.

          IIRC, the drop in the property market started in 2008, and had substantially recovered by 2010. NZ was in a very different situation than the US – we didn't have their sub-prime loan issue.

          The elephant in the room, that I don't think he addressed, was the Government imposed lending criteria – which is a factor throttling the mortgage lending by the commercial banks. And what changes a National / Act goverment might make.

          The political instability he forecast, doesn't fill me with optimism.

          • pat 14.1.1.1.1

            Our GFC experience was moderate however there was much activity/concern behind the scenes including RBNZ support.

            Assume the Gov imposed lending criteria you are referring to are CCCFA changes from Dec last year….the banks had already begun a self imposed tightening prior …the CCCFA isnt the reason banks are currently reticent…fear of loses is.

            Agree that if he is correct about fragmentation of the political centre then it dosnt exactly encourage stability.

            • Poission 14.1.1.1.1.1

              GFC is different as we had the CHCH earthquakes,which brought into NZ a significant injection of free capital (insurance) the 42 billion was entered on the capital account (not current account) and made the government look good.

              • Belladonna

                But the house prices in London (and for most of the rest of the UK) did the same thing – drop after the GFC, and then a fairly quick (couple of years) correction back to almost the same pre- GFC level.

                • Poission

                  The UK BOE dropped interest rates in 2008 to 2% (from 5.5% and variable mortgages of 7.5%) In 2009 they dropped it to 0.5% where it stayed for 7 years (mortgages 2.5%)

                • pat

                  And what happened to interest rates post GFC?

                  lol…snap

              • pat

                Indeed…a huge source of stimulus and a missed opportunity

                • Poission

                  Lots of wasted money,and huge future costs (opex) for the ratepayers with concrete money shredders such as the conference centre (or worse with the stadium)

                  • pat

                    Lots of wasted money, the wrong things built in the wrong places, the training/employment opportunities wasted, lost investment in future proofed infrastructure.

                    • Poission

                      Wasted investment in infrastructure such as sewage (which was replaced but not future proofed for growth constraining available land)

                      The government investment was less then the GST receipts for the new builds.

  14. Belladonna 15

    My takeaway points

    • No current belief from people that house prices will continue to fall (they think any corrections are short term and temporary)
    • Major throttle on house sales is ability to get a mortgage (controlled by by Reserve Bank).
    • Covid housing boom driven by RBNZ flooding housing market with cheap money. Major, major, error.
    • SE is keen on much more active intervention from government in banking. Culture problem in Wellington. RBNZ will be forced to change (not only in NZ)
    • Believes that there will be a long-term change, making it much harder to get a mortgage – so money flows away from housing to other investments. [Not sure *why* he thinks this]
    • Political division between renters/owners and population shift (no dominant generation). So fragmented, rather than a single dominant group to appease.
    • No 'centre' (group where interests overlap). Changes of government more frequent. Lots of reversal of policies as government change.
    • Politically there is a consensus that there is a problem. Debating over the solutions. Move from empathy to action. (Positive)
    • Wants to see a land tax. For everyone (no exemptions).
    • Housing policy is all inter-related. No 'one thing' you can do.
    • Underbuilt for 40 years. Not building fast enough. Moving towards medium density.
    • Problem: Most housing is being built for owner-occupiers. Not enough emphasis on renters, affordable housing, etc.
    • Places like Gisborne – rental stock is actually shrinking.
    • Immigration. Covid showed that house price increases don't have to be tied to immigration! But it is a driver, and is unpredictable (boom/bust)
    • Expecting to see a bust on the house-building side. Not enough people, with very high incomes (i.e. can get a mortgage), who want to buy. Affordable housing isn't economic to build.
    • Auckland – lose people to provinces, gain from international migration. So rents (comparatively) low, right now. But may change quickly and unpredictably.
    • 1/3 of income should be spent on housing – most people renting spend more, and is expensively supplemented by the govt. (Affordability going to be a major issue for people retiring with a mortgage, or paying rent)
    • Tenancies Act reform has improved things for renters, but not enough.
    • An answer is Institutional Landlords (build to rent) want long term tenancies (no turnover). cf Britain.
    • Most rental stock in NZ is mum & dad landlords. Not really in the business of being a landlord – business is really capital gain – tenants are a sideline.
    • NZ not ready culturally for rent control (Muldoon era).
    • Longer term – the answer is govt and/or institutional landlords for affordable housing.
    • Short-term Accommodation supplement needs to be indexed annually (more expensive, but encourages to find a better solution).
    • newsense 15.1

      That’s a nice summary. But that doesn’t mention the incentives.

      Almost all politicians own property and are benefiting from the price rises. For them there is no crisis which directly and urgently affects them. Similarly across the country there has been and is a lack of will to fix the problem as it is simply not a problem for many and for most decision makers.

      As a society there is no real urgency, no real incentive for urgency, irrespective of who is in charge.

      If insurance becomes unaffordable you think there will be urgent action. There was urgent action during the pandemic. There has been some action on inflation. We have participated on some group action on Ukraine.

      Politically it doesn’t hurt anyone enough and personally it scarcely affects the political class (negatively) at all.

      Yeh let alone when the forces of the reaction arrive and cancel density, public transport and urban planning.

      Nice thread discussion, but I’ll believe any significant action after it is built and in use.

      • Belladonna 15.1.1

        Oh I agree, there was a lot which was left out.
        I was just covering what was said – for those who don't have time to listen to a 30 minute interview.

        Agree that most politicians belong (by default) to the wealthy, older, and therefore property owning classes. Even youngsters like Swarbrick have bought after getting a parliamentary pay cheque.

        It seems that increasing uninsurability (not just price increases, but areas which are uninsurable at any price) – is likely to become an issue. But I don't know what action the government could take – apart from reinforcing the pressure to just move away from the problem zone. I don't want to see taxpayers paying for managed retreat for multi-millionaires!

  15. joe90 16

    I would.

    • joe90 16.1

      Wait for me fellas, I'm packing …

      • weka 16.1.1

        fucking scary thread. But it's not only climate change. It's land/water use and we have a lot of control over that.

      • Belladonna 16.1.2

        A bit of controversy around these photos. Apparently they're a bit selective.

        https://www.rt.com/news/560746-france-longest-river-loire-dry/

        However, no one is denying that France (and the rest of Europe) is in the grip of a major drought, and there has been significant effects on the river systems.

        • joe90 16.1.2.1

          Worst drought in more than 500 years is forecast to continue through until the end of October but not to worry, only one arm of a stretch of France's longest river has run dry.
          /

  16. Joe90 17

    Slater and the sewer.


    https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/1560575888780976128.html

  17. newsense 18

    Bit late for this loltastic insight, but the platforms new expert on ‘Maori Gone Craaazy’ is none other than Graham Adams from (formerly of) the Democracy Project where he hyperventilated about poor old Michael Bassett.

    It rather does line up the crossover between the far right and the Democracy project with its Victoria University logo the first thing on the page.

    Oh lol: Bryce Edwards, Karl Du Fresne, Marty’s Bradbury and head honcho Sean Plunket. Wonder if you’re allowed to call people a c— on the platform as Plunket famously did on his last job. No token Maori as yet? Plunket made it fairly clear in his first inter with Greive that he is not fussed by the Treaty at all.

  18. newsense 19

    Oh lolololol

    It’s the whole Democracy Project team with Geoff Miller and Michael Bassett too.

    Whatever Peter Fraser might have done, writing for something like the platform wouldn’t have been one. But emulating one’s heroes is often a bad idea!

    but it may have slightly more credibility than Whaleoil , even if much of the underlying philosophy is similar.

    This may be the media moment Bernard Hickey was concerned about. Or it might not. Certainly none of the ‘fart tax’, groundswell lot will be admitting they were part of the climate change problem and they’re not newly arrived…

  19. newsense 20

    Calling your website ‘The Resistance’ also pays some homage to the potential to reject democracy openly:

    Guns purchased in the US since Jan 6th potential for armed conflict increases.

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