Open mike 20/10/2019

Written By: - Date published: 7:00 am, October 20th, 2019 - 164 comments
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164 comments on “Open mike 20/10/2019 ”

  1. Ad 1

    I am happily surprised that not enough UK Labour MPs crossed the floor against the Brexit amendment to withhold approval.

    The Remain war may be lost, but there's still honour in the fight.

    • ScottGN 1.1

      The Remain War Ad? You mean the campaign that has been waged mostly by the cultural and financial elites of the capital against the ordinary people of the UK who had the temerity to imagine a different future for themselves?

      • Andre 1.1.1

        A different future brought to them by the likes of Nigel Farage and Boorish Johnson?

        • ScottGN

          Brought to them by whomever they want I guess, it’s their choice after all.

          • Andre

            Given the vast amount of bullshit and outright lies leading up to the referendum, and that the referendum was between a vague idea that anyone could project their fantasies onto versus a concrete reality, was it really their choice? Or is the better path forward a second referendum after the definite deal is nailed down, so it becomes a genuine fair choice between two definite realities?

            • Dukeofurl

              "Given the vast amount of bullshit and outright lies leading up to the referendum, "

              The Remain scare lies were proven to be false within days of the result. And continue to do so. The economy didnt crash.

              The UK will save billions from the total amounts going to the EU , not just the EU budget amount but there are other billions such as the customs duties and levies(£ 2.6 bill) plus nett EU VAT (£3.0 bill) adjustment amounts

              • Andre

                There were no lies and bullshit coming the leave side? They presented a true, honest and complete picture of what leaving would actually entail? Really?

            • ScottGN

              Politics, in case you hadn’t noticed is generally a ‘vast amount of bullshit and outright lies’ and the referendum was politics so go figure.

              As for a second referendum, however nicely you dress the idea up, it is nothing more than remainer desperation to overturn the democratic will of UK voters. Anyone who is a democrat and believes in the rule of law should resist the idea completely.

              • Andre

                In all the democracies I'm eligible to participate in, decisions and results are subject to re-evaluation after a period somewhere between 2 and 6 years. Nothing is locked in forever. After circumstances have significantly changed, there is nothing whatsoever undemocratic about putting the revised question to the vote.

                • ScottGN

                  In western democracies decisions and results aren’t subject to re-evaluation after a period of time. Rather it’s the personnel appointed to make those decisions that are required to re-affirm their continued fitness by the voting populace to make those decisions. They are not the same thing.

                  • Andre

                    You want to explain what's undemocratic about holding a new vote after circumstances have significantly changed relative to a previous vote?

                    • ScottGN

                      No I don’t particularly. Mostly cos there ain’t gonna be a new vote and circumstances haven’t actually changed significantly enough to justify one. Unless, of course, you’re an embittered remainer casting about for any chance to rewrite history.

                  • Andre

                    Y'know, I really don't have an interest in whether Brexit or remain happens. I've got no roots in the UK or the EU, and it's unlikely I'll ever visit either again in my life.

                    But I am interested in a people's right to self-determination. From that perspective, it really looks to me like the original referendum was an exercise in how not to make a substantial decision.

                    Putting up a vague nebulous concept that everyone and their dog can project their fantasies onto up against a current reality simply showed the status quo didn't have majority support. That's a very different question to whether there's majority support for a hard Brexit over status quo, or majority support for the current Brexit deal.

                    Looks to me like those opposed to a second referendum are embittered leavers who think any cost is worth it. Since they now have the result they want, they want to deny any possibility of reconsidering to those that may have changed their minds in the interim based on new knowledge.

                    • Dukeofurl

                      You have just described how messy democracy really is …. and it all mirrors the travails of the Kaipara District Council and its Mangawhai sewerage scheme… or Napiers new Swimming pool or any other local council in the country.

                      Greece had a referendum on the harsh EU bailout scheme, it lost 61% to 38%, but the government had it anyway.

                      Norway had TWO referendums about joining the EU, both lost but Norway is effectively an EU member anyway, as its covered by Diktats from Brusells

                    • Andre

                      @Duke – yeah, democracy is full of anti-democratic outcomes. But that's not a reason to stop advocating for outcomes that are more democratic.

      • The Al1en 1.1.2

        Greater London voted 60% to remain.

        • ScottGN

          Yeah and it still wasn’t enough to overcome the turnout for Leave in the rest of England and Wales. It needed to be about 80%.

      • Ad 1.1.3

        Their future is clear:

        – Northern Ireland effectively integrates into Ireland

        – Scotland leaves

        – UK becomes England meaning London with the rest sucked dry.

        Just like New Zealand would be without CER.

        • ScottGN

          CER is not analogous with EU membership. In stark contrast with the UK NZ still retains control over affairs that the UK has had to cede control of to Brussels. A better comparison would be to liken UK membership of the EU to what our situation would be if we had taken up Australia’s (still standing) offer to join their Federation. And I’m sure you’ll agree there’s a healthy majority of opinion against Federation in this country.

          Indyref 2 is by no means a certainty either. There doesn’t appear to be a groundswell of support for it, and, like the first one I suspect the whole enterprise is likely to founder on the inhospitable shore of monetary policy. Scots are not showing any sign of warming to the idea of giving up Sterling in favour of the Euro.

          • Dukeofurl

            The Northern Ireland situation is an historical anomaly, but if its bad for UK to leave the EU its even worse for Scotland to leave UK.

            The SNP once campaigned to leave the EU,

          • Ad

            The UK still has plenty of national sovereignty within the EU. I know you know that. CER is the only thing that kept us afloat in the 1980s, and has functionally integrated us as countries. It's a close enough analogy for NZ.

            The UK are about to find out that life on the outside is very cold. There's no changing their course now – they are going even with the new extension.

            When UK leaves the customs union and single market, then the EU will start carrying out checks on British goods. Expect delays at Dover and Rottterdam and most other ports, traffic bottlenecks, supply route disruption – even with this amount of lead time.

            In time the 28% of their food they get from the EU will settle down, as will the supply of medicines. In time.

            There will be a sharp fall on the Pound no matter what. After that comes plenty of foreign takeover activity because it's all cheap.

            A fair number of UK farms will be wiped out when the EU subsidies stop. So expect accelerated takeovers there.

            Animal product exports into the EU restricted or prohibited.

            No more EU research and development funding.

            Then of course the travel inconveniences: EU pet passport no longer valid, new driving permit, no access to EU healthcare, mobile devices get charged on global roaming rates.

            Thankfully the withdrawal agreement gives British cities living in the EU the same rights they have now.

            But for the UK, massive loss of immigration. Probable decrease of business travel and tourism.

            A big jump down in the economy overall.

            A transition period to 31 December next year.

            A degraded democracy. 2020 is the year the UK Labour Party has to figure out a way to survive. The Conservatives will just keep pushing the patriotic button and smash them.

            Scotland leaves within three years.

            A diminished and damaged UK.

            It'll take a while to balance out whether the UK fee to the EU was worth it.

            But the UK won't recover for years if at all.

            With Brexit everyone loses, but the UK loses the most.


            • Dukeofurl

              Re running the old discredited Remain scare tactics agains ?

              "George Osborne released a Treasury report on the long-term economic impact of leaving the EU. The headline message from this report was that leaving the EU would cost each household an average of £4,300 each year. Using economic modelling, ….."

              Treasury here cant model next years economy and the UK numbers mostly came from modelling a drop in migration to the UK.. just as we could boost the economy , and did, by boosting migration well above usual levels . Since when is that free money that doesnt cost as well for growing infrastructure and social dislocation.

              • Ad

                Brexit-With-Deal will have a less negative economic impact than a No Deal scenario. Both will be negative.

                You are welcome to find a UK or EU or even OECD economist who says Brexit will have a positive economic impact on the UK.

                Go right ahead.

                • Dukeofurl

                  "welcome to find a UK or EU or even OECD economist who says Brexit will have a positive economic impact on the UK. "

                  I just showed that 'economic modelling' is mostly voodoo science.

                  As the UK kept their pound , perhaps you would like to ask Greece how staying in the EU with the euro has worked for them.

                  leaving the EU fisheries alone – although it will take up to 5 years- will be a boost for Britain especially the northern ports

                  The Irish were stiffed by the EU as well over the bank bailouts , they were mislead in thinking the EU would cover the government saving of the banks . They didnt , Ireland had to 'pay it all back' meanwhile Iceland just said Goodbye to its banks and let them sink.

                  • Ad

                    You did nothing of the kind. You didn't even bother to cite a European or UK forecast example. Just typical laziness on your part.

                    Euro membership is different to EU membership. But I'm sure you could see that already.

                    Iceland is an irrelevancy abut the size of Christchurch.

                    Fishing is yet another smelly pro-Brexit lie. Fishing is .12% of the UK economy. Prepare for "origin" documents for each boat and each catch. Who knows if they will be able to sell their shellfish into the EU at all?

                    Ireland had the freedom – while within the EU – to form its own corporate tax settings and has completely re-set its economy. It's booming.

                • mikesh

                  "You are welcome to find a UK or EU or even OECD economist who says Brexit will have a positive economic impact on the UK."

                  I don't anyone is saying that Brexit will have a "positive economic impact" on the UK, at least in the short term term; however, I think the negatives are being overstated deliberately for political purposes, and the benefits of remaining overstated.

                  Yanis Varoufakis, who at the time of the referendum campaigned on behalf of the Remain option, was arguing that the UK should remain in the EU and reform it from within. Fat chance of that though, so it's probably better she gets out.

                  • Ad

                    Those who promoted the benefits of leaving have been shown to be liars, and they are the ones in power continuing to both tell and implement those lies.

                    Remember in 2012 when the London Olympics were opened? The UK proposed itself to the world as a place of inclusiveness, global cooperation, expansiveness, confidence, renewed tradition, and a great sense of fun?


                    Since the referendum, immigration into the UK has crashed, the Pound has nosedived, and the government is proposing a minimum immigrant entry salary into the UK of 36,000 Pounds which is great if you're a banker but little else.

                    Thankfully for the UK the economy is overall so strong that this is as good a time as any to Brexit.

                    • mikesh

                      I was not in London in 2012 so I'm not likely to remember it. However, I think that what has been lost since then was probably lost long before the referendum. The GFC in 2008 was probably a more important influence.

                      Better they get out now before EU policies weaken Britain further.

              • Nic the NZer

                Most of the spin in the forecasts is done with a simple ruse. The leave forecasts bias towards scenarios where the UK enters a mild recession on leaving and the government doesn't react. This causes a deep recession. The model has the same outcome of course when looking at similar scenarios with the UK in the EU.

                We know this as later bank of england forecasts didn't match up and they admitted treasury put pressure on them to fiddle the earlier ones (which they had).

            • ScottGN

              And yet it’s the areas where sovereignty has had to be ceded to Brussels that have rankled the most over the years and been the main drivers of the referendum result.

              CER is not the same as EU membership, it’s a trade and freedom of movement deal between NZ and Australia. And good on us for getting it when we did. Given the state of politics in Australia nowadays we would never be able to achieve anything like it today. Since we got it however, we’ve got plenty of trade deals with other countries too. Ironically Britain would love a CER type deal with Europe and the freedom to strike other deals across the globe but they can’t while they stay in Europe.

              As for the idea that Britain is going to feel the cold shoulder of economic ruin outside of the bloc. This may well come to pass but guess what, history is littered with examples of nation-states making decisions that run counter to their economic prospects, usually because there are other, higher interests at stake. Times made indeed be tough in Blighty, probably for quite some time. It seems though that enough people there have decided the risk is worthwhile.

              • Ad

                It's not going to be a complete and utter disaster. It will have negative effects.

                The 52% who voted for it could not calculate the risks of the proposal, and they will realize that history is being written against them.

                • Dukeofurl

                  Greenland withdrew from EU

                  Singapore withdrew from Federation of Malaysia

                  Czechs and Slovaks split up

                  The EU benefits mainly countries with large agricultural sector or they are new entries which get EU giveways. Plus large manufacturing companies can send their assembly and production plants to low wage areas- even so a car plant in Slovakia will have contract only workers shipped in from Romania.

                  Is Britains Cornwall and Devon really an underprivileged area that needs EU regional assistance.

                  • Ad

                    Greenland is the population of Nelson, so no one gave a damn. It's a client state of Denmark and the US military, beset by suicide and depression and ecological ruin.

                    Singapore isn't in the EU, nor Malaysia. You can run an argument about size optimization for states and the role of Lee Kuan Yew over thirty years, versus Malay integration, if you like.

                    Cornwall and Devon are dominated by massive private estates, some of them royal. They don't benefit from EU projects. Some may get subsidies as you say, but you can find out what the benefits are for each location here:

                    We'll only really figure out the benefits of the EU once the UK leaves. The EU has done a spectacularly poor job of either reforming internally or selling its positives.

    • Anne 1.2

      I watched quite a bit of the Commons last night and the more I see Boris Johnston, the more he comes across to me as a patronising, boorish, lying bastard who should be kept well away from the levers of power.

      Jeremy Corbyn on the other hand speaks clearly, cogently and you get the impression he is the one telling the truth.

      I cannot understand why the British media in particular try to portray Corbyn as the boorish, lying one and Johnston as the people's saviour when anyone with half a brain can see for themselves it's the other way round.

      • joe90 1.2.1

        A referenced list of Johnston's sexism, racism, homophobia, lies, gaffes, scandals and assorted fuckwittery.

        • greywarshark

          Golly – that is a real Blip's list. (Or can I say golly now?)

          He is one of the great AotW. A rambunctious spieler who speaks loud and confidently and attracts the enthusiasm of the mindless but aspirational (a febrile and easily ignited mass). I have seen a group excited by the declamations of someone voluble appoint that person as leader on the spot, to their discomfort.

          As for ScottGN raising the narrow majority of people fed blatant lies, and voting for change with the smallest majority to holy writ, one can only wonder at the simple-minded mantra of theory being spouted in the face of practical and informed reason. This also from Bryan Gould.

          The people in UK were unaware that their vote of dissatisfaction was likely to be used to break up the basics of their society, so they did not understand the need to apply themselves to attending workshops on the political ramifications and learn all the consequences, known and possible. Can I just have my understanding confirmed by one of the wise here: –

          1 Was the referendum a binding one?
          2 Or was it considered by the populace more as an expression of feeling, a snapshot of that point in time, more like an important poll?

          Law grinds the poor, and rich men rule the law.

          Oliver Goldsmith
          Author Profession: Poet
          Nationality: Irish
          Born: November 10, 1730
          Died: April 4, 1774

          • greywarshark

            Was the referendum a binding one or not? So many people making statements of what should be done and does anyone know this important point? I want one of the wise people who come here with ideas about how right Brexit is and listen to the voice of the people blah blah. Is everyone, we and the UK voters, informed about the facts of this matter.?

            • Dukeofurl

              No, it wasnt binding in the sense you mean, but legislation since passed committed the UK to leave. That would have to be repealed to stop Brexit.

              • You always cloud the issue dou. Thank you, if you are right about that information – not binding. I wanted to establish the point, not have your brownwash over it afterwards.

                • Incognito

                  Although legally the referendum was non-binding, the government of that time had promised to implement the result.[1] The succeeding government initiated the official EU withdrawal process on 29 March 2017, meaning that the UK was due to leave the EU before 11PM GMT on 29 March 2019, when the two-year period for Brexit negotiations expired.[2]


                  I don’t guarantee there is no ‘brownwashing’ with Wikipedia 😉

                  • Dukeofurl

                    Just as NZs first MMP referendum wasnt legally binding either.

                    The 2nd vote wasnt part of the 'process' or mentioned during the first vote

                    The 2nd vote was indroduced by Bolgers government to kill off MPP, along with the massive Shirtcliffe led campaign against MMP who predicted – yes just like the Brexit one- that old chesnut economic ruin

                    • Incognito

                      Always good to provide a link, even if it is to Wikipedia, to give comments a certain level of validity, if you know what I mean; it sometimes helps to make it less personal. Nowadays, we don’t just take people’s word for it because we can’t, sadly.

                    • DoU Brexit was what we were talking about. You diverted the thread to NZ. Can't you keep to the point when you find something elsewhere to scotch your argument. I wasn't talking round the subject of referendums – it was this UK one, and how the law was drawn up. Badly I think. But you go off-piste and hey presto you made a point which has little relevance.

                  • Thanks Incognito – I did want to hear something pretty factual, not just Dous version or opinion.

                    So it was cloudy then, as to whether it would go ahead. If a local Council came up with that sort of policy machinery that had great loopholes in it, voters, ratepayers, taxpayers, small business etc would have been up in arms about it. When it is an august body that sits on green leather? seats, they shouldn't get a free pass out of jail.

                    Them and their policy writers and those whose job it is to keep legislation fit for purpose should get a boot in the backside (no important vote like that should pass on a simple majority – 75-80% rather.) Give them the Bad Sir Brian Botany treatment. A delightful rhyming piece:

                    Sir Brian went a journey and he found a lot of duckweed.
                    They pulled him out and dried him and they blipped him on the head.
                    They took him by the breeches
                    And they hurled him into ditches
                    And they pushed him under waterfalls and this is what they said:…


                    • Incognito

                      To save the ship (Britannia) from the rocks they steered it into a storm and now they’ve lost all bearings. The Officers say “trust us, we know what we’re doing as we were borne to steer this ship so stay calm and carry on”. The deckhands and crew below deck are in for a rough sailing while the Officers dine in their quarters. As it has always been and always will be.

            • mikesh

              I don't think the referendum was binding, but nor do I think it was just an "expression of feeling". I'm pretty sure the people who voted to leave believed that that the UK would leave if enough people voted the same way. Or that the UK would walk away from the EU if the opposite turned out to be the case.

              • Edit
                mikesh You are rather loose with your political procedures, a bit easy peasy. For instance what do you consider enough people voting would look like. The whole question about national matters of great world importance, and to those of the country that have their lives affected, is should changes be on a simple majority it 50.5 or 51% to 49%. Those few points at the centre become crucial – so easy to bribe a sizable group to vote for you in ways that are just outside any controlling law. I think you are too trusting to have a vote.

                I say 70-80% should be required for a majority win on matters of great importance as this is.

                • Incognito

                  The British House of Commons can be dissolved and an election held before the expiry of its 5-year term by a vote of two-thirds of the membership of the House of Commons since 2011 under the Fixed-term Parliaments Act 2011. This is the only supermajority required in the British Constitution. [my italics]


                • mikesh

                  "I say 70-80% should be required for a majority win on matters of great importance as this is."

                  I thought we were talking about what people believed might be the outcome from their voting rather than the mechanics of the voting system itself.

          • Bearded Git

            I looked up Golly on the web which is never wrong.

            Apparently it was first used in 1775 and is a euphemism for god….so yes you can use it.

            • greywarshark

              Oh thanks BG. I get so nervous these days. There is a sort of etiquette book on-line called the Urban Dictionary which I consult sometimes but I tend to go into a faint sometimes after reading it.

              I have a 100 year old book of etiquette and may be consulted between the hours of 10.00 and 11.00am on Sundays on any matters of great delicacy on which people of a sensitive and gentle disposition wish to receive the old-fashioned advice that is such an emollient in social matters.

      • ScottGN 1.2.2

        Boris may well be the biggest arsehole who ever lived Anne but that’s irrelevant. Westminster has a job to do, having asked the people of the UK to make a choice, they should get on with implementation of the decision they were given.

        • Sabine

          Having asked 'some' of the people three and a half years ago would be more accurate.

          why i point this out?

          all of those that were a day short of 18 at the time then were not asked, they were told to fuck off, shut up, sit down and live with it.

          all of those that were a day short of death got to vote even tho it would never affect them.

          So no, The People of the UK were not asked, only some were.

          • Dukeofurl

            Pleeeese….its that supposed to be a reasoned arguement ?

            No matter what age you chose, 17, 18,19 etc there will be some who are a day short!

            The whole point of democracy is made by the aphorism about the wisdom of crowds.

            • Sabine

              yes, it should be.

              I would like to point out that anyone who was a day/a week or a month short of 18 did not vote. That is an aweful lot of people who did not get the right to decide their future, yet who is considered old enough to work, pay taxes and such.

              I personally think that indeed the voting age for referendums that impact the life of everyone to that extend should have been at least 15 – which is also the age one is considered old enough to work fulltime and pay taxes.

              In the same i would support a cut of age for people say over 75. Why? They will most likely not be affected by anything much.

              Democracy you say? Ha, democracy depends on the sanity of the populace, and frankly people believing they can go back to the 1850's when everyone knew their place, especially the foreigners, the brown ones, the women ones, the children ones etc etc etc are not what i would consider 'sane'.

              And we, as much as poeple else where we don't have a democracy, we have a selection of the most unsuited people – generally by way of birth, access to money and connections – and we get to choose every few years the least unpalatble option. Yei! Democracy!

              • Ad

                Most young people don't vote anyway. They prefer to shop and look at their phones all day.

                Democracy is kept alive by people over 40.

                • Sabine

                  yeah, that is it.

                  all their own fault for not voting – even when they are not allowed to vote.

                  and no democracy is not kept alive by people over 40 , property rights are, low taxes are, some benefits for some are but democracy?

                  i’ll give you a point for funniest comment of the day.

                  • Dukeofurl

                    "all their own fault for not voting – even when they are not allowed to vote."

                    The best nonsense comment of the week.

                    You have no real idea of what 16-18 yrs think and want, they arent social activists from well off families like you probably think.

                    Remember NZs Sue Bradford , a young activist- daughter of a professor of cell biology

                    The real problem is the 'teenage brain', social media campaigns financed by business and conservative political groups will have a field day with 'teenage brains'.

                    Money will win that game rather than ideas

                    For example Plenty of social tricks in music to get young woman to like it – digital high pitched voices etc.

                  • Ad

                    We trusted them when we lowered the drinking age from 21 to 18.

                    It was a total disaster.

                    Property ownership is not a qualification of voting.

                    The week before the local government elections, hundreds of thousands of young people marched seeking political change. Next week, with voting papers sent out, worst voting turnout in a century.

                    So far there's no evidence they'd use it if they even got it.

                    • Incognito

                      The week before the local government elections, hundreds of thousands of young people marched seeking political change. Next week, with voting papers sent out, worst voting turnout in a century.

                      To young people this makes sense, I reckon, but to you it clearly doesn’t. Ergo, you’re not a young person.

                    • Ad

                      Ergo they have no need for the vote then.

                    • Incognito []

                      Turnout was woefully low. Ergo, voters have no need for the vote then. At least young people get off their butts for and about stuff that matters to them, even if it might be fleetingly. Over time, they will become as apathetic as the rest of the electorate and stop acting for the greater good and opt for fretting about the QV of their house(s) instead.

                    • Dukeofurl

                      Compulsory voting would solve your problems of 'turnout' The results wont change that much , as we can see from Australia

                • Stuart Munro.

                  Not much democracy in mass low skill immigration – our self-styled "masters" imposed that massive clusterfuck on us without asking – they knew perfectly well what the response would be. Not much democracy in rubber stamping offshore land sales when a substantial majority oppose it absolutely, or signing up for a TPP deal with investor state provisions. Democracy is such an implicit virtue even North Korea pretends to it – but try to access your Labour electorate MP about slave fishing and they'll gaslight you from asshole to breakfast – they love slave fishing, and hate NZ workers with a passion. Expect them to do their job however, and you will be disappointed. For decades, the despicable pieces of crap.

                  • Dukeofurl

                    Even the Minister of Finance says he can control only 5% of the governments budget.

                    Do you think any MP has any say over slave fishing – why do you concern yourself so much that the rebuffs matter.

                    Did you not have a happy childhood?

                    • Stuart Munro.

                      Everybody has issues that strike close to the bone.

                      It was my career. Government collaborated with illegal practice and basically fucked my life. We expect illegality from Gnats, they are corrupt subhuman scum who, at best, belong in prison. But Labour pretended, and still pretend to progressive values. Slavery is not consistent with that pretention.

                      The fisheries have failed to develop. They are not measurably more sustainable. They have failed in their treaty obligations, and their international labour standards responsibilities.

                      We ordinary mortals suffer life-ruining consequences if we fall short of our responsibilities. As democratic citizens we get the government we choose to accept. I do not accept Labour's toleration of slave fishing – they need to clean up their act. I'd like a few personal apologies too, from all the worthless lying stooges I've raised it with, who by collaborating, have chosen to be accomplices after the fact.

                    • Dukeofurl

                      Sure . At least that makes sense. I shouldnt have been so dismissive. I found my Mps office very helpful on a small matter.

            • Incognito

              There are a few aphorisms doing the rounds such as the invisible hand and free market wisdom and its rational consumers. These are statements or constructs rather about us. I think it’s high time we wise up.

            • mikesh

              Perhaps parents should also cast a vote on behalf of their infant children, who will also be affected in the future lives by the decision. Such infants do not have time to visit the polling booths themselves in between breast feeding episodes and sleeping.

              • Incognito

                Doable, if both parents take turns at breastfeeding and looking after the sleeping defenceless infants. Assuming both parents are together in the same household otherwise a babysitter needs to be called in.

          • ScottGN

            For what it’s worth I support lowering the voting age to 16 generally. And doing so would have almost certainly delivered a different result in the referendum.
            The vote was conducted under the electoral rules in place at the time though and to suggest that it is somehow invalid because of that is nonsense.

            • aj

              One could suggest the result is invalid because of the number of campaign rules broken and outright lies told by the leavers.

              • ScottGN

                Then I suppose one could ask the courts to rule on assertions of electoral malpractice? Be my guest…

                • aj

                  Fake news, lies, misrepresentations etc have always been a part of political campaigns. I think it's safe to suggest that in recent years the bar has become very low. I don't think any rational person would argue that this is good for democracy. 'A lie is halfway around the world before Truth has it's boots on.

                  Where is this trend going to take us? I'm not sure there is a solution to this in law. It will have to come from the voters, but so long as there is political benefit to be gained by trickery and deception you won't see any progress.

                  • Dukeofurl

                    The UK electoral laws regulatory found both sides of the Brexit debate referendum committed technical breaches of the law.

                    As they do to this day, MPs , parliamentary parties local electorates breach the disclosure laws

                    The Guardian only highlights the 'failures' from one side only , doesnt mean there werent many others


                    Green Party (Bristol accounting unit)

                    Late delivery of 2017 annual accounts.

                    Offence. £200 (fixed monetary penalty). Paid 3 October 2019.

                    We Are Europe (permitted participant in the EU Referendum)

                    Failure to submit a return containing a statement of all payments made in respect of referendum expenses.


            • Dukeofurl

              Fanciful dreams always give the result you want , thats the reason for using them.

              Should we only have those over 50 vote on retirement and super questions 'because its their future'…thats just as silly as your talk about 16 yr voting

              • Sabine

                To an extend yes.

                You still try very hard to not understand what i have said.

                I am all for people who don't receive the super – aka our overloard in parliament – to not vote ever on restriction super or raising the retirment age.

                Yeah, i would not mind a bit of exclusion for people who are not affected by the choice to make to make these choices for others.

                But the vote of Brexit was 3.5 years ago, and the only ones screwed over royally in this case are those that are now in their twenties and they still have the same incompetend and un – affected lords fucking up their lives with no recourse.

                How democratic is that?

                • Dukeofurl

                  The House of Lords is strongly pro Remain…. what do you think that tells you about the age and social class who have benefited most from the EU and continue to so.

                  • McFlock

                    That's a fair point. Maybe some of them realise you can shear more wool from a healthy flock than a sickly one.

              • mikesh

                A UBI would not be of much benefit to me since I am already receiving National Super. However I would still vote for it on the grounds that it would be good for the country.

            • Sabine

              nowhere di i say it is 'invalid'

              i just took umbrage at the option that ' the people' of the UK got a say.

              Only those of voting age got a say, everyone else got shafted. Just in case you have a hard time understanding what i said.

              • Dukeofurl

                Look up the word referendum and find out what it says instead of your Trump like absurd claims.

                Ask the Swiss about a center piece of their political system…yes referendums.

                • 17 million voted leave and 16 million voted remain. Hardly conclusive.

                  Cameron should have insisted on a super-majority for such a momentous change-55% or 60%.

                  • Andre

                    MMP here only won by 54 to 46. Cameron's mistake was not making it a two-step process like changing to MMP here.

                    edit: and in 2011 it was ‘only’ 58% in favour of retaining MMP.

                    • Accepted-that would have been a good option.

                    • Apples with oranges. MMP was still an internal voting system.

                      Brexit breaks down carefully crafted measures and agreements with other nations using diplomacy and collaborative approaches, in some countries after nasty armed encounters. The Irish are a close example, have found the system okay and useful for general value. The free interflow to and from Europe which breaks down dislikes and disdain with familiarity from one country to another, modernises cultural backwaters, and stopped the UK from being insular in cultural attitudes, is being thrown out petulantly.

                      The hatred of EU bureaucracy isn't because it is worse than that of the UK itself. And the EU backs modern safeguards for human rights and respect that the USA is unable to match, being fuller of BS than the EU. People who have settled outside the UK are being forced to repatriate as their mutually agreed social benefits will come to an end.

                      It is a repeat of what Australia is doing to NZ, gradually. And seems connected with what the USA is doing as it flexes its flabby muscles, preparing to introduce automaton forces. If the USA continues in its reckless, hapless way and the UK binds into its systems, it is possible that the west will be involved in war again.

                    • Dukeofurl

                      The two step process for MMP here was designed to kill the MMP project.

                      The second ballot was not in the original proposal at all, which had 2 questions

                      1) change – 85% Yes

                      2) choice of 4 types of ballot – MMP 70% for that option

                      The second MMP referendum had the usual scaremongers out , like Brexit they claimed economic ruin !


                      Once we had a second ballot in NZ for Mps who didnt get 50% of the vote first time round 1908 -1913

                    • Andre

                      @Duke so the first MMP referendum (non-binding) had turnout of 55%, of whom 85% (1.2M) wanted change. Then the second referendum (binding) had turnout of 83%, of whom 54% wanted change.

                      I wasn't in the country then, so I've got no idea of the general mood of the country then (except for the timeless general disgust at politicians).

                      But it seems to me when presented with a non-binding question for yet-to-be-defined change (1st MMP and Brexit), there's a whole lot of meh going around, with the greatest motivation among those wanting to send a middle finger message to pollies. But for the 2nd MMP referendum, there may have been a sense of "shee-it, this is really happening" which turned a lot of the previous mehs into voters.

                      In terms of raw numbers, the first MMP referendum had 1031k votes for change (and the MMP option got 791k), 186k for status quo. The second referendum got 1033k votes for change, 885k for status quo. So fuck all difference in how many people wanted change, but a vast increase in the turnout for status quo.

                      It's not hard to imagine a similar thing happening if Brexit get a second referendum.

                  • Discussion got derailed after this – MMP and Brexit and whether the voting was similar is not an equivalency.

                    Different political planks. Have fallen off the Brexit, national fortunes and world history one.

        • Anne

          Can't agree ScottGN. The outcome of the referendum was narrow. Not much in it at all. Many who voted Leave were later to recant and say they didn't understand what Leave meant and if there were another referendum they would vote Remain. That's not made up. It was widely reported in the British Press.

          And it is highly relevant having an arsehole as a leader. They can do so much damage in the course of their term in office. Look at Trump. A disaster in every sense of the word.

          We had one of our own once who, admittedly, seems tame in comparison to Trump. I refer to Muldoon.

          • Dukeofurl

            Leave meant leave. A simple idea at its heart. What you really mean was didnt understand 'all consequences' Even now can ordinary people understand the Irish backstop and the Irish sea border concepts.

            Do the people who voted for 'Scottish independence' had any real idea of the consequences .

            From what I understood about Scotlands independence vote was some thought the EU would pay for Scotland budget top up they get from Westminister now.

            Look at NZs MMP many people even now dont know how it really works, especially if you lose electorate seats the gain is made in list seats. A common mistake made by media people who should know better

            • McFlock

              Whatever the brexit outcome, I reckon it's done the Scottish independence movement no end of good.

              Brexit's a complete clusterfuck in conception, election, and implementation. I'm glad I'm on the other side of the planet.

              • Dukeofurl

                "it's done the Scottish independence movement no end of good."

                So leaving the EU is bad , but leaving the UK is good. Only twisted logic could suggest that.

                Scotland will have to have the Euro, a hard border with England and no more Westminster subsidies. Good luck with thinking the EU will pay the core government operating expenses

                • McFlock

                  I didn't say independence was good, I said the last few years have done the independence cause no end of good.

                  Because 62% of Scots voted against brexit, and they're seeing it inflicted upon them in the most stupid manner imaginable.

                  Now maybe the money transfers go more one way than the other. The hard border isn't as much of an issue for Scotland as it is for Northern Ireland. But Scotland could well be better off in the EU and outside Britain than the other way around.

            • greywarshark

              dou Excuses for rigid authoritarianism. The folk won't bother so don't set it out in plain terms so they can understand. In a pros and cons way – which could be done with the general aims easily.

              If you believe it's not worth the bother because people won't read it or understand it, you are reflecting the worst aspects of the Westminster system that cater to class-oriented mendacity.

            • Anne

              What you really mean was didnt understand 'all consequences'

              Indeed it was. There are lots of people who will never understand electoral systems – or any other system – because they haven't the marbles and it would seem to include more than a few of our media.

              I accidently bought a HoS today thinking it was the SST (yep wasn't wearing my glasses 🙁 ) and read HDPA's latest article. Talk about a diatribe of misquotes, misinterpretations, misunderstandings and mischievous inaccuracies.

              David Slack would have been a far more enjoyable read. 🙁 🙁

              No, I ain't going to link to it.

          • mikesh

            "Many who voted Leave were later to recant and say they didn't understand what Leave meant and if there were another referendum they would vote Remain. That's not made up. It was widely reported in the British Press."

            I heard of one person who said that. Was there also another?

            • Anne

              According to the British media not long after the result came through, there were lots of them. But you'll have to take my word for it because I'm not going to hunt for them. Got better things to do with my time.

              You can have a go.

              • mikesh

                Nah. It would probably be like looking for a needle in a haystack (if you'll excuse the rather hackneyed simile).

        • mikesh

          Boris may well be the biggest arsehole who ever lived Anne but that’s irrelevant.

          What does an actor need a conscience for anyhow? – Jiminy Cricket

  2. Buster12 2

    Awesome game last night well done the ABs.

    • Ad 2.1

      Like mercury over rusted steel.

      England had some luck with the two intercepts.

    • gsays 2.2

      Fantastic performance last night.

      I had a friend come and watch and be bought a mate.

      We were talking about team culture and the article on Stuff about all the players unload the baggage from the bus. He reckons the ABs always clean up the changing room after a test.

      It reiterates the message 'Go fast, go alone. Go far, go together'.

  3. She's got it all sorted if you are feeling confused. Sounds a bit like today's Mother Beeton's book on etiquette of old.

    11.30 Kitty Flanagan's 488 Rules For Life Radionz today

    The very witty Kitty Flanagan has helpfully put together a comprehensive guide to modern behaviour, and help everyone around you be a bit less irritating, with her new book, 488 Rules For Life: The Thankless Art of Being Correct.

    She covers the important things: work microwave etiquette involving last night's fish curry, walking and texting, wearing far too much perfume on public transport, or what to do with the last of the toilet paper.

    Oh, and whether middle-aged men should have ponytails. (Spoiler alert… They shouldn't.) It began as a bit of a joke on Kitty's popular segment on ABC TV's The Weekly, and her publishers reckon the resulting book has the power to change society.

  4. Adrian Thornton 4

    Russiagate conspiracy nutter, 2016 loser and unashamed war monger Hillary Clinton drags US politics down into the gutter yet again…

    Hillary Clinton suggests Russians are 'grooming' Tulsi Gabbard for third-party run

    Gabbard had a pretty good reply though…

    Great! Thank you @HillaryClinton. You, the queen of warmongers, embodiment of corruption, and personification of the rot that has sickened the Democratic Party for so long, have finally come out from behind the curtain. From the day I announced my candidacy, there has been a …

    the rest here….

    • Dukeofurl 4.1

      "Hillary Clinton suggests Russians are 'grooming' Tulsi Gabbard for third-party run"

      Clinton never mentioned Tulsi Gabbards name !

      Gabbard has outed herself as Moscows plant.

      Kamala Harris’s press manager has been more specific about Gabbard s Moscow connections.

      Gabbard is often featured on RT News.

      “Gabbard is an interesting case, because she does have some foreign policy objectives that align with Russia, so it would make sense that a candidate who is known as an Assad apologist is seeing favorable tweets and headlines from some sort of Russian apparatus.”

      • Andre 4.1.1

        Maybe Stein can start calling herself a Democrat now to take the heat off Tulsi.

        If I were a political satirist right now I'd be seriously considering alternative careers. How could anyone make up stuff that tops what really happening?

      • Adrian Thornton 4.1.2

        Too bad it's not the 1950's useful idiots like you, Andre and Joe 90 would have been right in your element disseminating paranoia, outing actors, artists, writers etc with the panty hose wearing pervert McCarthy..oh well I guess lates better than never with you dummies.

        By the way that link to daily dot is a real low brow shit piece of propaganda, it's so over that top it really could have come staight out of the 50's, but you are in sooo deep you lot can't see the plainly obvious here you go guys, this should be up your ally..

        • Andre

          We love you too, Adrian! Pucker up now for a big sloppy one 💋

        • Ad

          Gabbard is nothing.

          She'll be lucky to even keep her seat.

          • Adrian Thornton

            Even if that were true, it's hardly the point.

            • Ad

              Gabbard protests, but only Gabbard cares. An unremarkable politician. You won't hear her name again after this cycle.

              • Adrian Thornton

                Wrong as usual.

                • Ad

                  Ok she's winning then.

                  • Adrian Thornton

                    Of couse I forgot with you lot winning is everything, even if that means leaving all your ethics principles and morals on the floor to gain the win…

                    But to give you an answer, again your analysis is flawed as per usual, Gabbard is and has alwyas been about changing the direction of the Democratic party, primarily from one that supports and often enacts aggressive foreign interventions, to one that dosen't.

                    I am not actually a Gabbard supporter, but I do happen to support that particular extremely important foreign policy platform that she is pushing.

                    I would say that her own plan for these elections would be that she would like to see Sanders win, and picks up a (well deserved) position in his administration.

                    • Dukeofurl

                      You would flip in an instant , if Sanders was the democratic candidate and Gabbard was the 3rd party spoiler

              • mauī

                If you believe she is unremarkable, who is going to be the remarkable 2020 candidate to defeat Trump then?

                • McFlock

                  Oh, great. This time Gabbard's the Chosen One. What happened to Bernie's cred?

                  • Adrian Thornton

                    Grow up man.

                    • McFlock

                      Sop the dems have several nominees who might do the job and beat dolt45, then?

                      Good to know. Tell Mauī

                    • mauī

                      Sounds a bit like – we'll go along with whoever the party chooses and hope for the best.

                    • McFlock

                      I'm sure if you squint really hard and ignore logic and basic English, you might see it that way.

                      Last time I counted the nominees, "several" good 'uns would leave at least a "solid half dozen" banalities, and "a couple" of duds have already withdrawn.

          • mauī

            Gabbard is a nothing… and all the neoliberal posterboys are here to tell us so.

            This is a hoot!

            • Ad

              Show evidence otherwise.

            • Adrian Thornton

              Yeah it is hard to imagine what sort of mental gymnastics must go in in the top four inches of a person who is trying to tell themselves that they are at all 'progressive' or left , while at the same time defending Clinton and the centrist liberal ideology…must be quite a workout.


              • McFlock

                Dude, three years have passed. This is unhealthy. Let her go.

                • Adrian Thornton

                  Not sure what you are talking about, Clinton is the one who attacked Gabbard yesterday, Clinton is the one who keeps trying unsuccessfully to remain fact I don't give a fuck about her.

                  • McFlock

                    lols whatevs.

                    • Adrian Thornton

                      What do you mean "laugh out loud, whatever"? are you saying Clinton didn't attck Gabbard yesterday?

                    • McFlock

                      If the grooming hat doesn't fit Gabbard, then the imprecise reference wasn't a slur on Gabbard. If the hat does fit Gabbard, then it's a simple truth that the hat fits Gabbard.

                      But whatevs, you're totally not bovvered anyway, you don't look bovvered at all, lol

                  • Dukeofurl

                    You are repeating falsehoods Adrian, Clinton never mentioned Gabbards name – she said a democratic candidate. She also talked about Jill Stein and Trumps possible Russia links.

                    Kamal Harris's people were talking about Gabbard and Moscow 2 weeks back

                    You dont GaF , but bought the whole matter up. geez

      • Dukeofurl 4.2.1

        Clinton didnt mention Gabbrad by name but she did say Moscow had компрома́т on Trump!

      • Ad 4.2.2

        Trump is the best Democrat asset since Barry Goldwater.

        • Andre

          Maybe a bit premature for that judgement … especially since arguably Goldwater laid the foundation for Nixon's '68 win.

          • Ad

            Nixon was pretty close against Kennedy – didn't need anyone else hitting the ball up for him.

            Trump was a revival programme for the Republicans first time around.

            Mid-terms he was better for the Dems.

        • Adrian Thornton

          The Russiagate conspiracy is the best asset Trump has, didn't see the Democrates losing their shit over all the things that Trump has done to make peoples lives worse in the US and around the world, didn't see them vote against the biggest military budget ever or the huge tax cuts for the wealthest in the States…nope their main focus for three whole years has been Russia Russia Russia.

          All this while poll after poll showed that the majority of US citizens don't care about Russia or Russiagate.

          And yet here you lot are, stepping right in line with a narritive that no one wants to hear, supporting a debunked conspiracy that is seriously in danger of helping re-elect Trump…job well done boys…keep flogging that dead horse.

          • Dukeofurl

            'didn't see them vote against the biggest military budget ever or the huge tax cuts for the wealthest in the States

            Yes they did vote against tax cuts. You are telling lies again.

            Tax Cuts , House votes 205 against 227 for . Senate 49 against 51 for

            Trumps Defence budget is more trickier to consider as the Democrats only been control of the House this year

            • Adrian Thornton

              OK yes you are right,that was wrong on the tax cuts, what I was meant to say was that the Democates didn't use that as their or similar Trump policies to form the spearhead of their push back to Trump, they instead kept using Russia as their main (blunt) weapon of attack.

  5. joe90 5

    Will the but her emails/the server, the server crowd stfu and go back to despising her for being her?

    A State Department investigation into former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s private email account found no widespread effort by her aides or other staffers to mishandle classified information.

    The three-year-long investigation by State’s Bureau of Diplomatic Security concluded that 38 individuals committed a total of 91 security violations involving emails sent to or from Clinton’s private server.

    • Dukeofurl 5.1

      Obama was the 'dream candidate' he ended up just like Clinton would have as President …and after.

      'Barack Obama to make $1.2m from three Wall Street speeches"

      • Andre 5.1.1

        Somehow it seems a little less offensively corrupt to be hauling in megacoin from Wall Street speeches after your term in office than if you do it immediately before running for office.

  6. Peter 6

    Trump is strategically brilliant – well so he reckons.

    "Trump's Great and Unmatched Wisdom"

  7. Little birds and big adults can both be vulnerable, needing food and housing. Do we have to set up Give a little accounts in a country that has squeezed $7 billion of returns from various places but much from paying beneficiaries less than required and puting barriers in their way for bettering their lives. And having flexible workers who sacrifice their health and wellbeing while they work here and there at odd hours and often on call so hard to plan. Having a birthday party for your 5 year old, phone call, we are short-handed. Letall have a sweet life in NZ again and start spending that $7 billion on human investment giving enjoyment, education and security in people's lives.

    So many of us need help. Perhaps the government could pay the poor to look after the nation's animals. The government has been instrumental in causing businesses to fold and import companies grow fat on replacing our own manufactures. So look for other jobs that need doing so we can put those spare hours into paid kaitiaki work. 💡 💡

  8. Andre 8

    Wonder who it was that got through to the bilious fake-bronze baboon that it's actually illegal for a government employee to award government contracts to their own businesses, and what arguments they used? Let alone that it's a glaring breach of two separate constitutional clauses, and therefore clearly impeachable as a standalone offence.


    …an overall decline in most aspects surveyed. This is not surprising given the culmulative effects of overcrowding and understaffing experienced thoughout New Zealand prisons.

    For instance:

    (a) poor ventilation in cells, and cells being too hot in summer and too cold in winter. In Auckland at the end of December last year we received reports of night time cell termperatures of 27 degrees.

    (b) lack of access to toilets, specifically insufficient access to toilets while being transferred, and while in yards and in day-rooms. As one person put it, “going toilet in a small bottle on a moving vehicle is extremely hard. A number of us spilled it, missed altogether, and overfilled the bottles.”

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    Minister for Racing Kieran McAnulty has announced the approval of a 25-year partnership between TAB NZ and UK betting company Entain that delivers at least $900 million in guaranteed funding for the racing industry over the next five years. Entain, a UK based group that operates multiple sports betting providers ...
    1 week ago
  • Government project delivers more reliable and resilient water source to Northland
    The Government has delivered the first of three significant water security projects in Northland, boosting regional business and climate resilience, with the opening of Matawii reservoir today, Regional Development Minister Kiri Allan announced. A $68 million Government investment supported the construction of the reservoir, along with two other water storage ...
    1 week ago
  • Trade Minister to US to attend Ministerial meetings
    Trade and Export Growth Minister Damien O’Connor will travel to Detroit tomorrow to represent New Zealand at the annual APEC Ministers Responsible for Trade meeting from 24 – 29 May. Whilst in Detroit, Damien O’Connor will also host a meeting of Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) Ministers ...
    1 week ago
  • Murihiku Regeneration energy and innovation wānanga
    I want to start by thanking Ngāi Tahu and the Murihiku Regeneration Collective for hosting us here today. Back at the  Science and Innovation Wananga in 2021, I said that a just transition in New Zealand must ensure Iwi are at the table. This is just as true now as ...
    1 week ago
  • New Ambassador to Mongolia announced
    Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta today announced the appointment of diplomat Dr James Waite as Aotearoa New Zealand’s next Ambassador to Mongolia. He is currently the Deputy Head of Mission at the New Zealand Embassy in Beijing, a role he will continue to hold. “New Zealand and Mongolia share a warm and ...
    1 week ago
  • Government commitment to Māori Education continues
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    1 week ago
  • More students to benefit from next round of Creatives in Schools
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    1 week ago
  • Speech to WasteMINZ conference, Hamilton
    Tena koutou katoa and thank you all for being here and welcoming me to your annual conference. I want to acknowledge being here in Tainui’s rohe, and the mana of Kingi Tuheitia. I hate waste. So much so that when we built our home in Dunedin, I banned the use ...
    1 week ago

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