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Open mike 20/10/2021

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, October 20th, 2021 - 114 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 …

114 comments on “Open mike 20/10/2021 ”

  1. vto 1

    town planning – water – sewer – waste

    core functions of local government

    being ripped from locals without consent

    votes will be falling from labour all over the place

    some very poorly political miscalculations methink

    aint gonna return for a third term methink

    the left can never stop itself from this sort of thing

    meme ca plus

    • vto 1.1

      not to mention the most foolish idea that all of these things will be done better by wellington than locals

      ha ha ha ha ha ha

      piss off wellington


      • garibaldi 1.1.1

        Right on vto. Both Parties playing into the hands of the greedies and promoting mayhem in the suburbs. What could possibly go wrong ?

      • Robert Guyton 1.1.2

        3 Waters recognises a looming disaster across the country for local councils because of the parlous state of the "waters" infrastructure through underinvestment. If nothing new is done, ratepayers stand to be required to pay exorbitantly. The Government has proposed a solution. Councils have perceived that some of their number will go, as the "core functions" are taken off them. A great deal of anxiety has swept through the sector. The counter-proposals from councils have been…difficult to hear.

        • vto

          The sole reason for taking it off Councils has been its cost.

          So fund it.

          Dont need new structures or or ownership or pulling into the dark hole of wellington. Just fund it and leave it as is.


          This remains a full-blown vote loser

          • Robert Guyton

            I don't think cost is the sole reason. There's the question of competency; these issues should been attended to already. Kicking the can down the road is generally a political decision. Problems with the cycle of elections, new councillors, capture by staff etc. all have conspired to create a massive problem. I think the extent of the problem is being understated.

            Again, my prediction: the Govt will take 2 waters and leave councils with storm water. Just a reckon 🙂

            • tc

              Cost and priorities that remain longer than an election cycle so projects get completed not derailed or refocused.

              It's alot worse than these councils let on. Chatting with the contractors who actually know is a real eye opener.

          • roblogic

            Reward incompetence and malfeasance? What a stupid idea

          • Tricledrown

            Agree vto a new bearaucracy costing more .Those councils who have spent $100's of millions upgrading their water and waste water will be subsidising Those who have not upgraded.

            A massive vote looser and Mahuta seems like a dictator in her portfolio.Because covid is taking all the limelight 3 waters is not being examined by the opposition or media.

            Labour this is a dumb idea.

      • Gezza 1.1.3

        “Même ça plus chose” I think is the correct shortened phrase.

        Yes, I’m a former public servant but was never a bureaucrat. I made sure Inworked in jobs that delivered outputs & outcomes.

        I worry that Labour is increasing the size of the bureaucracy with people who have no direct knowledge or expertise in the fields of their agencies. Which is how we got Cave Creek, Leaky Buildings, & Pike River. All these bureaucrat people are often good for is coming up with checklists & covering their arses when things go wrong because they didn’t know their “business”.

        • Sabine

          plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose

          the more it changes the more it stays the same thing

        • Patricia Bremner

          Water is life. We need clean drinking water, good waste water practices and better unified drainage ready for the coming climate caused surges. If we can not agree to improve this there will be huge burdens placed on future generations.

          What a wonderful legacy we are leaving./sarc We don't seem to be able to solve local problems in some places. Imagine a patchwork of systems some sound some porous in the combination with rampant covid and the loss of key local people to it.

          We only need to look to Australia to see their problems with each State's patchwork of differing views on covid prevention and how that has ended up.

          Some Councils have done well, but many have had minimum maintenance for years. Some have had their neglect kill people. The coming costs of sea rise means many Councils will try to placate their most influential members. We have seen NIMBY behaviour swaying almost all Councils.

          Rates taxes are now at $70 a week and more, cheap for the wealthy home owner but a burden for the poor one. No Council has raised the rebate much either in all those years.

          This is the beginning of Unified Planning. We are talking a plan for the future here, not a prop for the present. Yes there will be pain anger and fightback from threatened interests. Huge changes are needed to overcome the neglect.

          Where would our Airline be without Government support in hard times "because it is a strategic asset" So is water, and we already have large overseas entities wanting ours, while Cities are already taking it from nearby places to supliment poor planning.

          The number of "shortfalls in infrastructure" this Government is facing is critical.

          They have a huge number of important projects underway, and an army of critics and partisan parties to negotiate with including iwi. Yesterday for the first time in years cross party planning took place to try to mitigate aspects of our housing conundrum. I am the first to say that is not the whole answer, but if it encourages developers to consider smaller homes near transport hubs, yes it is a necessary helpful change.

          The infrastructure to support such inner city intensification and modernisation needs services of a magnitude no Council is currently considering, except in newer developments. We will argue about this, but those who think this Government is all "Kindness" and "No Spine" may get a surprise. They move when they see it is required.

      • RedLogix 1.1.4

        Having worked 8 years in this industry I think you've gotten the wrong end of the stick here vto. This is a long-overdue reform that will create a number of regional water entities across logical geographic boundaries – it isn’t about centralising everything in Wellington.

        Water supply is a high-tech industrial process that requires a range of specialist skills to meet modern standards and expectations. Small councils simply cannot attract and retain the people necessary. Just as an example – we had one of our staff move to a smaller council to an apparently more senior role, but return just a few years later very disappointed at the lack of support and resources available to such a small organisation.

        Last I counted in 2013 the Wellington Region alone had 14 organisations responsible for water in one form or another serving a population of barely 650,000. While the formation of Wellington Water in 2014 rationalised this somewhat – it has to be stood in stark contrast to say the UK where there are just 14 entitities serving the entire nation.

        Modern water systems are not for well-meaning, under-resourced amateurs.

          • RedLogix

            Yes. I've worked in both small and large settings, private and public. Each has it's strengths and weaknesses. But since councils first started providing water services over 100 years ago the world – and the nature of the task – has changed.

            I have to admit to being a little biased here – having lived and worked in multiple countries in the past two decades, I have to tell you that while NZ remains my home and close to my heart – it really is a small nation. Just one large scale water supply authority typical everywhere else in the world could do the whole of NZ standing on it's ear.

            On a tangent I recently discovered this extraordinary bit of water history. The WA Goldfields project built over 120 years ago still staggers my imagination. The whole story of it is one of vision, audacity and for the era a mind-bending scale. And also of parochialism, small-mindedness and ultimately a tragedy.

            But in time it proved the backbone of the state generating value vastly beyond it's originally contested origins.

            The Goldfields Water Supply Scheme was designed by WA’s Chief Engineer, Charles Yelverton O’Connor, to provide a reliable source of water for the goldfields. It was an inter-basin transfer water system which extended 560 kilometres from Mundaring Weir (Dam) in the west to Mount Charlotte Reservoir at Kalgoorlie in the east. The scheme included two main reservoirs, the main conduit of the pipeline, eight pump stations, holding tanks and regulating tanks. Pipes were made of 30-inch diameter steel and the original pumps at the eight pumping stations were capable of delivering 5 million gallons (22.73 million litres) of water per day. Work was completed in early 1903.

            At the time of its opening the scheme was recognised as the largest engineering undertaking of its time. The amount of steel used in construction was greater than any steel structure elsewhere in the world. It attracted worldwide attention. Never before had water been pumped so far or lifted so high.

            Incidentally O'Connor came to WA from 20 yrs on the West Coast where among other things he led the building of Westport's harbour.

            • SPC

              Being on the ground level of such a project here would have provided the confidence to look at the blank canvas and go big on the water scheme.

    • Subliminal 1.2

      Nelson Council has decided to opt in for which I am very glad. Seems to me a no brainer to accept funding and expertise and to take away yet another voice of dissent every time we the people decide to make water quality better.

      • Patricia Bremner 1.2.1


      • Maurice 1.2.2

        Unfortunately there is only one place for "other funding" to come from … the people in other areas. So let's TAX other people to solve our problems?

        Eventually we run out of both other people’s money and created debt

        • SPC

          Central government has cheaper debt funding cost, that quite apart from councils having debt caps that prevent long term infrastructure action.

        • KJT

          If we don't have essential infrastructure.

          We will not be able to earn any money.

          BTW. It is OUR money, we earned. Not "other peoples".

      • Tricledrown 1.2.3

        It may get initial funding but in the longterm it will mean a new tax for every household on top of rates and central govt taxes while councils who have already taxed rate payers for upgrades will effectively pay again.

        The govt should directly fund upgrades for areas who have poor quality water.

        Not installing a whole new bearaucracy which no doubt such up a good percentage of any rate payers funding.

      • RedLogix 1.2.4

        At last we can agree on something subby yes

  2. Dennis Frank 2

    Revival of bipartisan politics after a hiatus of 14 years has substantial political implications.

    It is the first time National and Labour have shared a stage to announce a policy breakthrough since then opposition leader John Key joined then prime minister Helen Clark in 2007 to announce a compromise on the controversial “smacking bill”.

    Political commentator Ben Thomas, a former press secretary in the Key government, said such cross-party announcements have proven to be good for opposition politicians in the past, noting that both John Key and Todd Muller benefited from supporting the government on the anti-smacking and zero carbon legislation, respectively.

    “If you look at the smacking bill, the government’s intention was to get some political cover, as they didn’t need it to pass the legislation, but by bringing the popular leader of the opposition along, it was seen as a bit of a masterstroke by Clark at the time,” he said.


    The next poll will be most interesting. Pipsqueak reckons he must consult his caucus before declaring an Act view of the new law, but he expressed personal disapproval of it. If his colleagues go along with him on that, the right will have a new pivot point.

  3. Dennis Frank 3

    Labour and National's historic truce on housing all began when Judith Collins wrote a letter to Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern in January proposing a bipartisan solution.

    In June, Housing Minister Megan Woods and Environment Minister David Parker wrote to National confirming they saw merit in the proposal to increase the supply of residential housing, according to Collins.

    "They welcomed National's contribution to further development of policy to allow a serious uplift in new housing in urban areas," Collins says.


    JC deserves credit for initiating the bipartisan effort. It proves her capable of being more than merely divisive. I suspect the public will reward her with a poll boost. If it stalls the rise of Act, and the next poll shows a plateau of Act support, her leadership status will probably no longer be under threat.


    “It is a significant political step for both parties, which face pressure from urban property owners who are unhappy with more housing being built in their neighbourhoods. By both backing the bill, the parties have essentially agreed to not capitalise on that vote.”


    • Gezza 3.1

      "I suspect the public will reward [Collins] with a poll boost."


      That's an interesting speculation, Dennis. Wonder if you'll be proven right? Collins has basically been collecting brickbats & down votes all year. Perhaps some of the voting public ARE tired of reacting negatively to Collins' many ill-judged antics.

      I think she will certainly be pleased that so much media reaction to this move has been favourable. 👍🏼

      • Dennis Frank 3.1.1

        We'll see. Perhaps the next RR poll will feature on 3/Newshub soon. Seems noteworthy to me that both major parties are taking a stand against the urban capitalists. The obvious move for Act is to take advantage of their bipartisan representation of the rest of Aotearoa by marketing itself as the party of the nouveau riche. Pipsqueak: "Yeah, we're the aristocracy of the future. You got it."

        Dunno if he'll have the balls to go for it. If he does, I bet he fronts with a smoke & mirrors act to deflect attention from his lunge for the plum.

      • Graeme 3.1.2

        Interesting political trade off by National. They’ve thrown votes ACT’s way by shitting on the ratepayer lobbies, but picked up truck loads of funding from developer lobbies. Puts ACT in an interesting position.

        Think the government (Woods?) has played both of them like a piano.

    • Ad 3.2

      Next poll Act and National are close to even.

      Act just needs to repeat: “Jacinda sucks”; that’ll do it.

    • chris T 3.3

      Not sure it do much poll wise actually.

      Might just be me missing the obvious, which wouldn't be a first, but seems to have gone largely under the radar with the whole Covid thing going on.

    • vto 3.4

      poll-wise Jacinda is going to gather all the negative on this (and there will be large large amounts of it, guaranteed) and Judith will get away scot-free..

      what on earth was Jacinda thinking

      • chris T 3.4.1

        I think for once, not just PR value tbh

        • vto

          you might be right ct.. what I do know is that the screeching from these inner-city neighbourhoods will reach fever pitch over this..

      • chris T 3.4.2

        Think it is actually a clever move by Ardern.

        They were looking a bit control freak, closed shop, with the whole Covid, can't say nothing till Tuesday/Friday 4pm

        Gives the impression they are open to others input.

        Kind of shows how dim Collins is for rollng with it.

        • KJT

          Just maybe. Politicians on both sides are looking at solving one of the countires ongoing problems together.

          Not a bad thing.

          National could follow on from that by making constructive suggestions to help solve the 3 waters problem, instead of Luxon spouting bullshit.

    • McFlock 3.5

      I suspect the public will reward her with a poll boost.

      That wouldn't be a "reward" so much as "defibrillation".

  4. Gezza 4

    Swinging sparrows & sparrows in my kitchen

  5. Cricklewood 5

    If, as mentioned be some experts we go down the path of 'allowing businesses to fail' the govt needs to legislate to override the personal guarantees often needed to secure a commercial lease.

    This will avoid at least the spectre of complete financial wipeout and the forced sale of the homes of small business owners and I would extend that to putting requirements on banks to avoid these situations as well.

    The pain needs to be shared atm Banks are creaming it.

    • Sabine 5.1

      We have allowed businesses to day since last year. But i am sure that someone is working hard on cracking this issue. One day. One day. Until then, some owners will have to sell their private belongings to pay a lease on a commercial property that is still at the cost of before 2019 – because nothing was done to force property owners to drop their leases either to a more accurate reflection of the business market, or to have a large enough sum ready to pay oneself out of a lease with a lumpsum.

      But then, hey, all these tall poppy business people, they all need cutting back a bit, right. If they would have had some foresight (something that we can not ask the government for) then they would have planned for a 5+ year plague, lockdowns, and so on. So they deserve what they get. Right? s/

    • Gezza 5.2

      “The pain needs to be shared atm Banks are creaming it.”


    • vto 5.3

      "The pain needs to be shared atm Banks are creaming it."

      Recall the GFC, created by the banks… the banks got saved… so wrong, so very wrong…

      But really, let them fail. Pandemics are a well known risk. It aint as if this is something new in the world – they are common. Taxpayers and wage and salary earners are not there to underwrite businesses. No way.

      And also keep in mind that such sentiment runs both ways… if wage and salary earners are going to be required to share in the downside then they must also share in upsides… good luck

      • chris T 5.3.1

        Kind of unfair. As usless as they can be, you can;'t just let big banks go bust.

        Too many peoples livehoods and actual lives involved, in more ways than one.

        You kind of want to avoid people offing themselves rather than telling their partner they no longer own their house and all their savings have gone

        • vto

          Yes I appreciate my point lacked those hard political realities. I guess I was pointing out that this entire issue is very fraught and much more complex than high level thoughts typically allow.

          Keep in mind that in saying this "you can;'t just let big banks go bust. Too many peoples livehoods and actual lives involved, in more ways than one."….

          … actually happens all the time. Small people, and one-offs get shat on by this kind of thing constantly. They don't matter though do they – just one person here, another over there, not enough to make a headline… it is apparently only important if large numbers of people suffer…


          I know because I have been one of those such sufferers – kicked in the head and stomped on by exactly what you refer to – where was my saviour? ha

          • chris T

            That is a fair point.

            A lot of big businesses have gone tits up and lives have been screwed.

            Big banks though man. That could get very ugly.

            Lot more people invested

          • chris T

            Having said that. I realise totally that my point seems to send innense bias on behalf of big banks over other people just trying to make a living with their hard worked business.

            So kind of admit I am a bit of a hypocrite with it.

            I think I kind of look at how many people will be screwed over it. And unfortunately banks win.

            Maybe they should have to pay some mega tax, insurance thing to run.

            I know actual insurance companies are insured by mega insurance companies

        • mikesh

          Government should be provided with a shareholding proportional to the size of the necessary bailout if the bank is ‘too big to fail’.

          • chris T

            Kind of used to think the same thing, but politics and banks could be a bad mix.

            Not sure I want the Greens having a say in my savings, or the Nats.

            Get your point though. Would put onus on them

            • KJT

              Yep. Can't have the Greens stopping the banks from funding hydrocarbon pollution and clearing native bush and wetlands.

        • Rapunzel

          No one ever wants that sort of desperation – at least now it's become visible to people who never recognised how easy that can come about until covid knocked on their doors

          At least there has been back-up but TBH most people continue on relatively normally with better understanding for those who genuinely can't & lost income

          There was none of that with the GFC you battled on sometimes for months with no work so you mortgaged the house & eventually battled thru

          People left for work in Aus, couldn't sell at a loss or even rent their home in 2011-12 what a surprise to return in 2015 & the next year sell it for twice the price the following year

          At least NZ has a govt prepared to back all its people, the more they're included the less people will feel pushed to the edges – it's a start

      • Cricklewood 5.3.2

        Killing off personal guarantees for commercial leases wont hurt the taxpayers one bit and will stop people becoming suddenly destitute which certainly would.

        The second half of that would be requirements on mortgage holders to provde relief to commercial landlords if needed.

        Shared costs.

        • Enough is Enough

          Yes you have nailed it.

          Despite fundamentally changing the law of contract, removing personal guarantees and allowing business to default, would just kick the financial pain to someone who has everything they own secured by an Aussie bank.

          Unless there was some relief offered to that person, I only see the banks winning with this proposal.

          • Graeme

            It’s a very complex issue that will take the wisdom if Solomon to resolve. For every tenant like Sabine, and ourselves, (we’re paying 2018 rent and have taken 5% of our rent in last month) who are genuine cases there will be 10 who will have a go to try and screw over their landlord for a lower rent.

            Designing a program that gets just the genuinely affected without creating a lot of sad boundary cases that fester in the media will be hard.

            Then you get businesses that were marginal / failing before covid but have zombied on thanks to the government support. Whole thing’s a huge stinking can of worms

            • KJT

              There has already been cases of big firms using their clout to aviod paying leases during covid.

              Even though they certainly have the means to do so. (Have to protect those commercial landlords from tenants bad faith while at the same time helping those with genuine hardship.

              Pleasently surprised talking to small business owners I know, how many of their commercial landlords have come to the party on rent.

              From experience a while back, big trade creditors are supportive with arrangements when you cannot pay on time. IRD also.

              Pity that banks have been less helpful.

      • Tricledrown 5.3.3

        Only the whistle blowers were punished of the Ponzi scheming bank's.

        1929 showed it was a mistake to let the Banks fail. BUT the best option used was to Nationalise those banks as in NZ ie BNZ then sell them off when stabilised not loosing taxpayers money and allowing corrupt practices to be rewarded. The 1998 economic correction showed this in Mexico and Ecuador. With new computers that were powerful enough to look at numbers profitability and over all benefits to economies.

        But the power of big business has not been blunted and the Trump administration removed protections to stop banks printing and ponzi scheming ie loan to deposit ratios and massive management bonuses .

        • KJT

          Then in the GFC.

          Iceland let the banks fail….

          • Tricledrown

            Iceland bailed out local depositors to the tune €5.8 billion euros.All overseas depositors lost everything. Given the size of Icelands economy they could not afford to bail out the banks.

            That's why NZ does stress tests on our banks and are trying to get them to cover their deposits as opposed to govt bailouts.

            Our govt paid for insurance in 2007 but remember South Canterbury Finance Bill English forgot to renew the policy sitting on his desk for 6 weeks. So we all paid for that ponzi scheme.

    • Patricia Bremner 5.4


  6. Dennis Frank 6

    Initial reports of a looming crisis of capitalism will have many thinking `deja vu all over again'. But the blip theory of economics can be considered alongside the gradualist evolutionary view. What evidence of a paradigm shift do we have?

    Q: You point out in your books and speeches that markets pay no attention to social justice and income distribution. Yet capitalism is built on the notion of free markets. How are we going to change things?

    A: Through politics and through a change in societal norms. Let me just give you a couple of examples. This kind of awareness has led the vast majority of the people in the Business Roundtable [an association of chief executives of leading U.S. companies] to support a move away from shareholder capitalism to stakeholder capitalism. Even if not all of them really mean it in their heart of hearts, that change in the way they conceive of it will have effects over time.


    Over the next 30 years, we have an enormous amount of work to do to make the green transition, to make sure that everybody has an adequate education, to have a decent infrastructure and so forth.

    Stiglitz is very Green/socialist, eh?

    Professor Stiglitz — winner of the 2001 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences, a former chief economist at the World Bank and a professor at Columbia University — said in a pre-conference interview that the private sector had proven incapable of responding alone to the global health challenge and that government had a big role to play.

    As usual with socialists, the interview is big on telling us what we already know and small on feasible solutions that promise good outcomes.

  7. Bruce 7

    Judith plan," I snap my fingers you do it, "

    Judith Collins on National's target for ending lockdowns https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/political/453883/judith-collins-on-national-s-target-for-ending-lockdowns

    • chris T 7.1

      " country would reopen to the world at a vaccination rate of 85-90 percent of the eligible population "

      While I am no fan of Collins, not actually sure why you disagree with this. as long as the countries were each classified as to risk in all their current situations,

      Do you mind elaborating?

      • I Feel Love 7.1.1

        Will Collins elaborate? I think the point is she says these blank meaningless things without the subtleties. Like "85%" of all? Or eligible? Of NZ? Of the world? It's just meaningless, simple sloganeering.

        • I Feel Love

          90% sounds great but is it enough? Also that 10% may mean 30-40% of māori. Def means all under 12s right now.

          • chris T

            "90% sounds great but is it enough? "

            Yes I think it is. Other countries seem to think less is.

            Honestly. Do you actually want the country to stay closed, when it has been let lose now and shutdowns are no longer the best option?

          • Sabine

            90% currently seems to be pushed and achievable. That still means at some stage someone from government will have to actually articulate what happens when that 90% is achieved.

            And maybe that needs to happen to entice people to get their jabs.

        • chris T

          Think she probably means NZ. It actually says eligible, and frankly it is more fricken straight than anything the current govt has said.

          Well till we we find out Friday, because although they obviously know, they can't say it till Friday

      • Bruce 7.1.2

        "Collins said there was no reason why the target couldn't be reached.

        "We need to get on. We've got now now around 80, close to 85, percent of people have had at least one vaccination. After a big effort to get people vaccinated. There's another six weeks to go. There's no reason why everyone can't get the rest."

        There shes said it, no reason at all, shes said it so I have every confidence it will now happen just as she proposes.

        yea right

        • I Feel Love

          Well Collins wouldn't even have let the virus get in. "Forever", get a grip, it's been what, a few months? Every country is struggling with this.

        • chris T

          We actually do need to get on, unless you want a load of unemployed people.

          Businesses are dying

          • Drowsy M. Kram

            Businesses are dying

            Cellular organisms live and die; businesses succeed and/or fail – get a grip.

            We are moving on, and the current pace is a compromise – too slow for some, too hasty for others.

          • KJT

            And most are doing OK, if not better than usual.

            Unemployment is down. BTW.

      • gsays 7.1.3

        Your selective quoting left out the 'or Dec 1st, whichever comes first'.

        So any talk of %'s is just fertilizer.

        • chris T

          That is a fair point. But I just happen to agree with her for once. It is getting ridiculous, now the thing is spreading.

    • Treetop 7.2

      Collins gave an ultimatum which ever comes first, Dec 1 or 85 – 90% vaccinated.

      Collins will need a magic wand to manage a fully blown pandemic post 1 Dec if every region is opened up at the same time. The country is under resourced with health workers and ICU beds and any staggered opening up will depend on a region peaking and trending down.

      I cannot exclude humanitarian health workers being deployed to NZ.

  8. Dennis Frank 8

    John Minto is perplexed:

    It’s a gang up against wealthy nimbies. Both parties are now more scared of the backlash from the middle class struggling with housing than scared of wealthier homeowners who don’t want higher density accommodation in their streets.

    But let’s be clear – this is not addressing the most critical problem in the housing crisis which is the desperate lack of warm, dry homes for families and tenants on low incomes.


    Thing is, John, God helps those who help themselves. If the working class organised themselves into a political force, Labour would have to factor them into the political equation. Since the working class have been resolute in their stand against political action in common cause for as long as anyone can remember, I'm puzzled about your perplexity John! You're only four years younger than me. You've had plenty of time to figure it out. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Minto

    • Jimmy 8.1

      "God helps those who help themselves". That makes sense just like:

      "The harder I work, the luckier I am"

      • Dennis Frank 8.2.1

        You're right in respect of history. That link provides useful insight into the mass psychology of employment relations. I learnt about that stuff myself in various career situations. However game theory provides a better view than class consciousness: if you identify as a player rather than as a class member then natural human agency is the determining factor.

        As a free agent your chances of being made a victim of life's circumstances depend on how clever you are in relation to any opponents, how lucky you are, and how much willpower you apply to your situations. Depending which choices you make, fate then plays its accompanying hand. In contrast, those who depend on unions are at the mercy of union reps & poor decision-making by them.

    • alwyn 8.3

      " If the working class organised themselves into a political force".

      They did. It was called the New Zealand Labour Party and it was founded in Wellington on 7 July 1916. It was of course taken over by the people of academic-socialist beliefs about 35 years ago and hasn't had anything to do with the working class since.

      • Dennis Frank 8.3.1

        Indeed! Doesn't explain why the working class allowed the middle class to steal their project though. Nor does it explain their apparent lack of effort to co-create an alternative. Nor have I ever noticed any attempt by political scientists to explain why.

        So you & I are free to advance our own theories, Alwyn. How about everyone is working together to deny that the working class have any inherent collective political agency? Too intellectual? How about the theory of universal cluelessness stretching to the horizon in all directions? Well that would only work on the basis of allowing all those who believe they are exceptions to the rule to register that dissident identity. Me first! wink

  9. KJT 9


    What about the "human right" to go to work, with out the danger of getting a potentially deadly illness, and taking it home to your family?

    Why should someones right to aviod a harmless, and it is harmless, compared with most other things we regard as harmless, needle in the arm override others "Human right to life".

    That is without even going into the loss of income, health and jobs for those that get sick. Hundred of jobs plus the delivery of essential materials food and groceries, is at risk if my workplace has covid cases forcing shut down. Watch all those MT supermarket and hardware store shelves, double.

    In many workplaces, mine included physical distancing is impossible, when someone arrives with a cold we all get it. Why should my right to try and keep my family safe be overiddin, by someone who, to put it bluntly, is basically too mis-informed, selfish or stupid, to protect those around them.

    Not to mention the rights of those who cannot choose, those with immune deficiency, who have allergic reactions to vaccines, who have health problems where vaccinations don't work.

    What about their right, to go about their normal day safely?

    Anti-vaccers want "Choice". But they want "choice" without personal consequences. They want their choice, even if it removes "choice" and even the "right to life" for others. A very childish veiwpoint.

    "Choices" have consequences. If you want "choices" then you also have to accept that society has a right to protect the people those "choices" will harm.

    Vaccination is only part of the tool kit. Other measures will be required for some time to come. But it reduces the chances of a disaster in NZ considerably, if enough are vaccinated. The number required looks like well over 90%. Even more in crowded workplaces, schools and hospitals.

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

    • weka 9.1

      There's nothing in my post about anti-vaxxer values around choice. Nor am I anywhere saying that vaccination is wrong. And I said that vaccination is a bloody good tool for helping reduce spread of covid and protect individuals.

      I probably should have pointed out in the post that people not yet vaccinated are so because of a range of reasons that reducing them all to 'evil antivaxer' is counter productive. But I thought that was obvious from context. Māori and disabled people don't have low vax rates because they're lazy and selfish.

      So I'm really not sure what you are talking about.

      Do you want to remove existing human rights in order to force people to be vaccinated? What would that force entail. If this is what you want, then please speak plainly. I don't want to do another round of dancing around this.

      But please also put it in the context of the actual post.

      • KJT 9.1.1

        I thought I have made it obvious over several conversations about this.

        We cannot hold people down obviously. And I will never agree to that anyway.

        But if someone makes a choice not to be vaccinated. They have to accept, like most "choices" we make in life, that there are consequences for that choice.

        Consequences that protect others, like not being able to work in occupations such as teaching, health care and aged care. Or travel where they can spread covid to many people. For example.

        Maori, amoung others, have low vaccination rates because of access and mis-information. Both I believe can be addressed. It will take some effort, but it is not insoluble.

        And. I didn’t reduce them all to “evil anti vaccers”.

        Mis-informed for many. As I believe I made clear. However the people behind the mis-information do not have good motives.

    • weka 9.2

      Nothing personal KJT, it’s not just your comment. I’m not willing to have my posts derailed by arguments that all unvaxed people are stupid/selfish/lazy/whatever. This both inhibits good debate, but it also works against getting more people vaccinated.

      You are more than welcome to comment under my post if you address what is actually in the post.

      And, we can continue the above discussion in OM 👍

      • roblogic 9.2.1

        The post was all over the place, making a lot of general points about systemic problems. Not surprising that people respond to your most contentious assertions. Are you in Auckland?

        There is a reason that people respond with bitterness and frustration. We are tired of the fuckery of a few antisocial idiots holding a city of 1.8 million to ransom.

        • weka

          then address that in the post. Say what the contentious assertions are and put up an argument. That way I will know if you understood the post or are just going off on something about anti-vaxxers. You did address the race/ethnicity issue, and I responded, so we both know how to do this.

          • weka

            because the impression I had from both you and KJT is that you misinterpreted what I said.

  10. I am going a bit crazy under endless lockdown. And then Weka comes along and suggests we should be "kind" while Auckland is held to ransom by a few munters who refuse to paddle the waka, and seem to be actively trying to sink it. Half of the Christian community is spreading this free-dumb bullshit. The vaccine denial and rhetoric about government overreach is endemic across facebook, in Marae pages, Tradie pages, and "Alternative health" practitioners. Facebook needs to die in a fire.

    Really frustrating. I want to be kind to people, but people also need to be kind to others by getting a f&$ing jab and wearing a f&#ing mask.

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

    [“And then Weka comes along and suggests we should be "kind" while Auckland is held to ransom…” No, that’s not what I said. No-one gets to tell lies on this site about my views (or any author’s), including about a post I have written, and when I am here and available to clarify. If you don’t understand, ask. You are free to tell me how any post come across, and I will clarify.

    If I see anyone doing this again, I will be moderating. We’re all stressed and tense, and Auckland people doubly so. My suggestion is to take a breath and remember that TS is for robust debate and that still has actual meaning here. You cannot just choose to make up shit about other people. – weka]

    • Ad 10.1

      Weka wants people to be kind, but Weka is [deleted]

      [I also don’t take this smeary shit from commenters, even authors. Don’t misrepresent what I say onsite for your own agenda. I would clarify, but unfortunately people are being arseholes, I don’t have time or inclination for long time commenters who should know better, so I’m deleting instead. – weka]

      • higherstandard 10.1.1

        I don't believe Weka has ever stated she is unvaccinated or that living in a rural setting will 'save her'.

        • weka

          I certainly didn't say that living in the country would save me (Ad is outright lying there). I'm booked in for two vaccinations. I explained in the comment, in context, why some people are still unvaxed and aren't lazy/stupid/an anti-vaxer. I've deleted that comment and a quote of it, because people here are stepping over a line here.

      • Cricklewood 10.1.2

        Um really not convinced its a good thing to putting an authors vaccination status out there, if indeed true or has Weka laid her position dowm somewhere?

        • roblogic

          See comment on the "Covid and Kindness" post. (not gonna link because the site messes up internal links).


          • weka

            I've deleted the quote and my original comment, because obviously there are people here that cannot be trusted to not use my personal shared details against me politically, by taking my words out of context.

            Stop and think about what you are doing (Rob and Ad, and everyone actually). If you feel free to misrepresent my views or my life, how are you ever going to convince anyone to amend social media misinformation?

            And, you cannot tell lies about authors on this site.

        • weka

          I clarified upthread.

      • weka 10.1.3

        Mod note.

    • weka 10.2

      mod note for you.

      • roblogic 10.2.1

        All good. Keep making up excuses. I hope your solution works. But Aucklanders' tolerance is running out fast.

        • weka

          I'm not making excuses, and given how much time I've put into trying to talk with you today, I'm not going to try and explain further. You're sailing close to short ban if you can't shift out of the accusatory, misleading shit. If you want to make actual arguments you are free to do so (and this I would welcome).

        • Jester

          As I think I've said before, I'm in Auckland and I am over the lockdown and ready to open up tomorrow.

  11. Tricledrown 11

    Looking at testing numbers compared to NSW we are only testing approx at 25% the rate NSW.

    We need our rate to go up to be able to control the virus.
    Especially with the number of unlinked cases.

    The govt is allowing health workers to be prioritised in MIQ.But is not giving visas to those migrant heathworkers already here.
    This should be highlighted by the opposition.

  12. weka 12

    • Molly 12.1

      We must be on the same information quest. Read that this morning, along with:

      Stephen B Levine's 2018 article in Journal of Sex and Marital Therapy – Informed Consent for Transgendered Patients

      and the article which led me to both on the Child Protection resources website:

      In whose best interests, transgender children choices and consequences – Sarah Phillimore.

      What do we know about the implications of medical and surgical intervention for children?

      Not only is a young child likely to be unable to grasp the necessary information to make an informed decision about transition, it seems that the adults around him or her do not yet even possess sufficient information to make a safe, informed decision on the child’s behalf. We appear to know more about the impact of puberty blockers on sheep than we do on children. Note comments from the Science Symposium on 18-19 October 2018 at The Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust, cited below in Further Reading. Grateful thanks to @bettytastic to alerting me to this.

      We do know something of the effect of puberty blockers on the brain development of adolescent sheep however. Professor Neil Evans of the Institute of biodiversity in Glasgow reported impairments to several functions, including a sheep’s capacity to find its way through a maze, which persist after stopping puberty blockers. This raises questions about the possible neurological effects of puberty blockers on children’s psychological, social, sexual and cognitive development. Some of Professor Evans’s references are listed below (Robinson et al 2014, Hough et al 2017 a & b).

      The consequences of a pathway of surgical and medical intervention are not merely physical of course. Stephen B Levine wrote in 2018 in the journal of Sex and Marital Therapy ‘Informed consent for transgender patients’ reminds us that risk needs to be identified across three categories – the biological, social and psychological. Four specific risks arise in each category.

      Biological risks include loss of reproductive capacity, impaired sexual response, shortened life expectancy, Insistence that biological sex can be changed cannot alter the possibility of sex based illness – such as prostate cancer arising. Social risks include emotional distancing from family members, and ‘a greatly diminished pool of people who are willing to sustain an intimate and loving relationship’. Significant psychological risks involve deflection of necessary personal development challenges, inauthenticity and demoralisation – when changing your body does not bring about the desired changes to the way you ‘feel’.

      Of course, the existence of risk does not mean that one should never embark upon a risky endeavour. It may well be that the benefits outweigh the possible disbenefits to a significant degree and the risk is well worth taking. But that conclusion cannot be reached without clear eyed and dispassionate unpicking of the risks AND benefits.

      How can the ‘no debate’ platform and unquestioning acceptance of any child’s expressed wish to ‘transition’ ever reflect the serious ethical duty of medical professionals to be sure their child patient has offered informed consent?

  13. Jimmy 13

    We need Tommy Lee Jones here. We have another fugitive!

    Covid-19: Alleged MIQ escapee still missing, another charged | Stuff.co.nz

  14. observer 14

    Preview of tonight's 6 pm headlines:

    Brian Tamaki in custody. Protests for the cameras. Will lead the news.

    It's often said that a key component of political success is to be lucky with your enemies. Tamaki, Goudie, Slater and co must have been selected by central casting, working in the PM's office.

    New slogan for the vax campaign: "Annoy Brian with a little prick".

    • chris T 14.1

      Problem I see is you could end up making him just a martyr to his weirdo followers. But not much choice I guess

      • Tricledrown 14.1.1

        What would be a good idea would be to give Brian Tamaki a 6 month jail sentence which would prevent him travelling overseas insurance and bank loans would be harder for him to obtain.The Tax department should go over him with a fine tooth comb.

  15. georgecom 15

    I was reflecting on the continued demise of telephone boxes around the country this morning. The continual removal of such as recently even hit the national party. It seems that in many areas the "Retain Judith As Party Leader committees" no longer have venues to hold their meetings. Some committees have however reported that phone boxes are proving too big and they were already looking for smaller venues.

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