Open mike 20/01/2016

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, January 20th, 2016 - 187 comments
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openmikeOpen 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 …

187 comments on “Open mike 20/01/2016”

  1. Paaparakauta 1

    John Keys’ relationship with the next US president will be different from that with his Hawai’ian neighbour.

    What are the implications for our foreign policy.

  2. Murray Simmonds 2

    A tour boat caught fire and sank. Everyone survived, thanks to a superb rescue effort following a well-managed evacuation by the captain and crew.

    Yet millions will be spent on an investigation that may take up to a year and a half.

    I’m struggling to understand why.

    • McFlock 2.1

      Because the next crew might not be superb.

    • All incidents like this should be used as an opportunity to examine the processes in place that the crew and rescue teams followed to see what worked well and what didn’t.

      It’s an opportunity to continually learn and update safety procedures to increase the odds of the next incident also ending without loss of life.

      The only concern I ever have about these things is if the investigation process becomes corrupted and results in a witch hunt.

    • Stuart Munro 2.3

      Empire building by the MSA.

  3. One Anonymous Bloke 3

    Does a witless fool understand the difference between a voluntary donation and a demand for money?

    Apparently not.

    • Muttonbird 3.1

      Haha. Seymour, right?

      He did get his agenda through though, and that was to paint Little and Labour as communist and overbearing, and taking away from Little’s message which is equality of eduction opportunity for all children.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 3.1.1

        True, although it was tucked away at the bottom of the article, at which point ~95% of the audience has already stopped reading.

      • millsy 3.1.2

        Ironically Seymour’s beloved charter schools don’t demand a single cent from parents.

        Probably will be why they will end up being popular.

    • Draco T Bastard 3.2

      It was a New Zealand tradition that parents had always contributed to schools

      And it was traditional for the rape of wives to not be counted as rape. We got rid of that because we realised that it was wrong.

      Tradition is usually wrong in fact which is why we keep changing things for the better.

      We’re a generous open society

      Well, we used to be. These days we’re more of a selfish, cheap, me,me,me society thanks to Act policies that were brought in during the 1980s by the 4th Labour government.

      It is worth noting that for every $1.80 parents donate to schools, taxpayers contribute about $100.”

      Which is just proof that the government isn’t properly funding schooling.

    • tinfoilhat 3.3

      Another disappointing ‘article’ from the MSM. I see the Herald has made it even more like puerile clickbait……

      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11576508

  4. fisiani 4

    Any idea who will get the nod to stand for Labour in the Hutt? Given it’s a safe Labour seat I presume there will be lots of interest.

  5. Penny Bright 5

    Seen THIS ?

    Secret spraying of glyphosate all over Auckland, without the knowledge or consent of citizens and ratepayers?

    Helping to make Auckland ‘the most liveable city in the world’ – by secretly poisoning people whose health and well-being is significantly affected by glyphosate?

    https://weedmanagementadvisory.wordpress.com/

    BREAKING NEWS: Official Information Act documents reveal extensive covert spraying of glyphosate in Auckland streets – see Reports & Submissions for WMA Report and News for WMA Media Release

    ========================================================

    THIS IS A SPECIAL FRONT PAGE “Back to the Future” REPORT

    “The only consideration for Council should be the health and welfare of the public” Meriel Watts – July 2015

    TOXIC CHEMICALS RETURNING TO AUCKLAND

    When the second Back to the Future film was released in November 1989 it portrayed a future 2015. Now we are that future, and unbelievably Auckland Council and Auckland Transport is emulating the character Biff and are returning thirty years into the past to change our present and future.

    They are returning us to a toxic dark age that will see 1.5 million people once again facing chemicals on their streets and parks, berms and playgrounds on a regular basis.

    This is no conjecture or fictitious fairy tale – it is cold factual policy that is already being actioned.

    We knew there had been a collective dragging of the feet on the part of Auckland Council and Auckland Transport (AT) in getting on with the task of implementing the hard won 2013 Weed Management Policy (WMP), what we didn’t know was that there was a hidden agenda.

    An agenda at the highest level of Council to gut and neutralise the vision, principles and objectives of the WMP and execute a return to chemical control across the region.
    …..
    ________________________________________________________

    In my view – this is a scandalous breach of municipal power and authority regarding the promotion and protection of public health
    within the Auckland region, for which I predict significant repercussions at the highest levels for those involved.

    Read the details for yourselves ..

    Penny Bright
    2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

    • Molly 5.1

      Thanks Penny.

      An important change to take notice of. A huge step backwards in terms of environmental toxicity for residents.

      • Ffloyd 5.1.1

        Just read that the Alternative flag is going to be flown on Harbour Bridge. Is this a diversion??

    • Rosie 5.2

      Hi Penny. How long has herbicide been off the streets and parks of Auckland? Has it been since 2013 when that WMP you refer to was introduced?
      Being herbicide free sounds very progressive. Safer for the environment, humans, bees and animals. I’m impressed. Sorry it may return. Thats incredibly backwards.

      Almost as backwards at the Wellington City Council who spray everything into oblivion and ignore basic H&S protocols. Eg. A worker was out spraying the roundabout outside my house in 115km gusting winds last year (I checked metservice as I couldn’t believe what I was seeing) and they never wear any PPE. I’ve never seen any worker provided with gloves or masks, or if they are provided with them they don’t wear them.

      I’ve tried raising the issue of using glyphosate and also it’s excessive use with both parks and gardens and the GWRC and it’s fallen on deaf ears.

      Another reason our so called Green Mayor is a phoney and a hypocrite.

      Good luck with attempts to keep Ak herbicide free in public spaces.

    • grumpystilskin 5.3

      Penny,
      When there’s a heavy dew I can often smell it in the GI area, not far from where I live.
      I know that smell anywhere as we had it in the garage when I was a youngster.
      Not a scientific method I know..

    • weka 5.4

      FFS, try explaining what is actually going on. NZ city councils routinely spray glyphosate to control weeds, to call it covert is just daft. Are you saying that they had stopped in Auckland and have now resumed without telling anyone?

      Just to be clear, I’m completely against the use of glyphosate in most situations it’s currently used in, so my comment here is about issues being sensationalised and presented very poorly without actual information that informs people. All I can see here is some alarmist rhetoric but no explanation of what the problem is. That doesn’t help the cause.

      • Molly 5.4.1

        Hi weka. I didn’t consider that point, although I did read the linked piece which says that areas that had fought to be treated chemical free now are being given the same treatment as everywhere else.

        Knowing the changes that have been brought about locally with the new service provider procurement policy by Auckland Council, I took the information on face value as a consequence of larger service providers taking the cheapest (more efficient methods) to look after our road verges and parks and reserves.

        One of our local community groups took it upon themselves to look after a neglected piece of bush reserve, handslashing the weeds and setting bait traps for unwanted pests. They did this for several years, but after procurement the new service providers came in and just sprayed chemicals.

        Like you, I’m not a fan of glyphosate being used indiscriminately on our environment. I am wary of not having full transparency in what is being used.

        • weka 5.4.1.1

          I must have missed that. I did try reading both Penny’s comment and the linked articles several times but couldn’t get past the nonsense. Are you saying that the council used a non-herbicide method for a while and have gone back to a herbicide method? And that the former was done at the request of the community and the latter done in secret without discussing with the community?

          Pretty sure this has happened in other places, just not secretly. I seem to remember that Dunedin trialed the steam weedkilling machine in suburbs that had kerbs, and then a few years later they stopped (because of some dispute over the contract and the cost of the machine I think). Then they started using pine oil, which caused a whole set of other problems that they pretty much ignored. Haven’t heard what they are doing now. It wouldn’t surprise me if they’re using glyphosate again, because while they might want to find an alternative and be responsive to the community the bottom line for them is that the weeds have to be killed and they have to do that within their budget. In other words, the culture war hasn’t been won within councils by any means regardless of what policy they have from year to year.

          If the Auckland council have done ridden rough shod over the community on this, that’s bad and they should be called on it. But both the comment and the linked piece are the kind of rhetoric and misleading sensationalising that put people off and actually stall progress. That’s what made me grumpy.

          Edit, I’ve just reread the link and it’s very unclear what it’s talking about. It assumes a level of knowledge about the Auckland situation that I and most non-Aucklanders won’t have (and probably many Aucklanders). And it doesn’t actuall say what’s happened. Bizarre.

  6. Ad 6

    Hope everyone is observing the impending political confluence of:

    – the Prime Minister’s speech coming up in Auckland at the end of January
    – the signing of the Trans Pacific Partnership in Auckland with all its massive media focus in February
    – Waitangi Day
    – Big Gay Out
    – Parliamentary Speech from the Throne

    He will be laying out pre-budget signals particularly in transport, treaty negotiations, legislative reform, tax signals, the works.

    The PM has a massive media surge about to occur over the next month.
    The broad Opposition need really strong things to say to even get a look in.

    If anyone thinks this lot have run out of steam, the momentum has been building for a while and is about to hit.

    • BM 6.1

      The wise political person wouldn’t even try and compete, they’d save their scarce ammunition for a time where they can cause more damage.

      • Stuart Munro 6.1.1

        The wise person would certainly take advice from a far-right tr0ll.

        This lot never had more than steam going anyway – no policy, no guts, no brains, no growth, no jobs and no shame.

        It’s astonishing really, that such a thoroughly worthless set of crooks can even briefly hijack the system of governance of a first world nation. The first act of any true nationalist government would be to make an example of them to be remembered for generations.

        • BM 6.1.1.1

          And what would that be?

          • Stuart Munro 6.1.1.1.1

            Sulla wiped out corruption in less than 3 years – can’t argue with a successful methodology.

            • BM 6.1.1.1.1.1

              What, create a dictatorship?

            • tinfoilhat 6.1.1.1.1.2

              Stuart your continued calls for violence have no place amongst the political left please desist.

              • Enough is Enough

                His calls may have no place amongst the political left…

                but in my view it will be the inevitable consequence of the oppression that the each government has exerted over the poor since 1984.

                Key and English can only push the poor so far before something will break.

                Unless both National and Labour change their current economic policy direction in the next few years, I sadly believe there will be a violent uprising.

              • Paul

                I do not propose violence.
                However, there are many people from the neo-liberal era who should be tried:
                Tony Blair, Donald Rumsfeld, Dick Cheney and George Bush need to be tried for the invasion of Iraq.
                A number of international bankers need to be arraigned for their corrupt banking practices of the 1990s and 2000s.
                EXXon Mobil an others need to be tried for their duplicity over climate change, which will result in ecocide.

                These are all serious crimes.

              • Stuart Munro

                Sulla was almost unique in not using violence – he impoverished corrupt officials and made them live out their lives in poverty. Just the thing for Key & Brownlee.

                • Paul

                  It would be good for some of the 62 to see what life is like without so much.

                • Stuart Munro

                  It was considered unusually cruel, and corruption ceased to be an attractive activity.

                • tinfoilhat

                  “Sulla was almost unique in not using violence – he impoverished corrupt officials and made them live out their lives in poverty. Just the thing for Key & Brownlee.”

                  I think you need to read more history Stuart – Sulla was most certainly a violent dictator.

              • Stuart Munro

                Who the devil are you to determine what is or is not the political left?

                There are an abundance of left theorists who advocate countering economic violence with other forms.

                I don’t insist on violence, but I want the guilty punished. In an exemplary fashion.

                Sulla’s cure for corruption would do nicely.

                • tinfoihat

                  @ stuart munroe

                  You are a nasty, violent piece of work and no part of the left that I belong to.

                  • Stuart Munro

                    I’m a little confused – are you a rightwinger? You don’t seem to be able to spell your own name.

          • Tom 6.1.1.1.2

            .. that’s *so* Machiavelli

    • Rosie 6.2

      “If anyone thinks this lot have run out of steam, the momentum has been building for a while and is about to hit.”

      Do you think think this is the moment when we right up close to “being on the cusp of something very special” that we were promised?

  7. Rosie 7

    Rob McCann from White Ribbon is STILL out of the building.

    I resent an email to Rob McCann late last week asking him to put forward his reasoning for retaining the PM as an ambassador for White Ribbon when the PM has consistently demonstrated his lack of suitability for such a role, including the fact that he himself is an abuser.

    I simply get the same out of office reply.

    Again Key will not be held to account for his behaviour and attitude towards women and through their silence, it looks like White Ribbon are protecting him.

    • Paul 7.1

      He should be back from holiday soon?

      • Rosie 7.1.1

        I think he’s decided to take a permanent holiday, from this issue at least. He’s not likely to front up now, not when the issue “is so last year” and everyone has conveniently forgotten. Another PR win for Key.

  8. Paul 8

    More evidence that 2016 is going to be a shocker.

    ‘Dairy price fall at Global Dairy Trade auction pressures Fonterra payout

    World dairy prices have fallen again at auction, leaving farmers resigned to Fonterra dropping an already low payout.
    The average auction price dropped 1.4 per cent to US$2405 a tonne at the Global Dairy Trade (GDT) auction. That compared with a 1.6 per cent fall in the last auction a fortnight ago.
    Federated Farmers Dairy chairman Andrew Hoggard said the disappointingly weak GDT result would put more pressure on Fonterra’s “poor” forecast payout of $4.60 a kilogram of milksolids.’
    OCD revealed this week that tough international market conditions had forced it to lower its milk forecast by 30 cents to $4-$4.30/kg.
    The dairy company’s chief executive Steve Koekemoer said, in an email sent to suppliers, the payout fall was because of weak demand and an oversupply of milk products in the global market, resulting in continous downward price pressure.’

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/farming/dairy/76040784/dairy-price-fall-at-globaldairytrade-auction-pressures-fonterra-payout

    Sadly, Key and co have no plans to deal with the tsunami about to hit us.

    Other economic woes…..

    Why This Slump Has Legs
    http://www.theautomaticearth.com/2016/01/why-this-slump-has-legs/

    Hollande: France Is in An “Emergency Economic Situation”
    http://fortruss.blogspot.fr/2016/01/hollande-france-is-in-emergency.html?m=1

    ‘Dairy futures point to weak demand’
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11575842

    NZ sharemarket falls again
    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/business/294349/nz-sharemarket-falls-again

    Weak growth and dairy prices weigh on kiwi
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11575715

    With wave of Iranian oil imminent, a shudder in Saudi Arabia
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11575666

    China GDP drops to 25-year low
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11576210

      • Paul 8.1.1

        This in the business section of stuff.
        The only thing that is patently wrong about this article is the word ‘surprisingly’. If their editors paid attention and did their job, it would have been obvious to them.

        ‘IMF warns global growth could be ‘derailed’ over the next two years

        Global growth could be “derailed” over the next two years if key transitions in the world economy are not successfully navigated, the International Monetary Fund has warned.
        It has surprisingly downgraded its predictions for global growth for 2016 and 2017, cutting growth estimates by 0.2 percentage points across the board for advanced economies, for emerging markets, and for the world, over both years.
        The move will wipe away billions of dollars in potential global GDP.
        The IMF says ongoing problems with China’s economic rebalancing, the huge fall in global commodity prices and rising US interest rates are seriously hampering global growth efforts.
        “This coming year is going to be a year of great challenges and policymakers should be thinking about short-term resilience and the ways they can bolster it, but also about the longer-term growth prospects,” IMF economic counsellor and director of research Maurice Obstfeld warned.
        “Unless the key transitions in the world economy are successfully navigated, global growth could be derailed.”

        http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/world/76066458/imf-warns-global-growth-could-be-derailed-over-the-next-two-years

        • Paul 8.1.1.1

          ‘Rod Oram: Preparing for economic pain

          The Reserve Bank offered a seemingly reassuring economic forecast on Thursday. Our GDP growth has slowed to an annual rate of about 2 per cent but it will recover next year thanks to brisk construction activity and tourism, and some strengthening of commodities.
          But the Reserve Bank added that the outlook crucially depends on China. If its problems deepen and its growth slows further, then things gets tougher for the global economy. We are not immune……………

          …..But what’s going on in China is far more profound. The country is undertaking its biggest, most complicated and difficult strategic shift in its 35 years of modernisation, a senior bank economist told this columnist in an interview in Beijing this week. Other interviewees during the week fleshed out many areas of that journey……………

          ………Consequently, China’s debts have quadrupled in the past seven years to US$28 trillion, equal to 282 per cent of its GDP. Such a high level means China has less room for errors of policy-making or performance…….

          …………….For the past 20 years, many companies and economies around the world have geared themselves up to met the demands of a burgeoning China. They made lots of money along the way.
          But for the first time ever, the world has to adjust to a faltering China.

          http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/71960711/Rod-Oram-Preparing-for-economic-pain

      • Paul 8.1.2

        And more stock market news
        Japanese stocks plunge into bear market

        http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11577004

    • alwyn 8.2

      Here is something to cheer you up Paul.
      A net 29% of New Zealand firms surveyed plan to increase their staff this year.
      http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/better-business/75982446/want-a-pay-rise-nz-companies-plan-to-boost-staff-in-2016
      That is in spite of all the doom and gloom you are trying to portray.
      Come on. Just once admit that New Zealand is doing fairly well, isn’t it?

    • grumpystilskin 8.3

      Dairy was always going to fall, the bubble was created by rumors of a clamp down on the milk powder import market in China. Stock was bought in case it was going to happen.
      I remember hearing someone on RNZ talking about this a few months ago and they mentioned this often happens when people get wind of possible future trade restrictions. ie: buy and hold, just in case.
      And no, I can’t remember who said it.

    • Draco T Bastard 8.4

      It is utterly impossible, as this country has demonstrated again and again, for the rich to save as much as they have been trying to save, and save anything that is worth saving. They can save idle factories and useless railroad coaches; they can save empty office buildings and closed banks; they can save paper evidences of foreign loans; but as a class they cannot save anything that is worth saving, above and beyond the amount that is made profitable by the increase of consumer buying.

      It is for the interests of the well to do – to protect them from the results of their own folly – that we should take from them a sufficient amount of their surplus to enable consumers to consume and business to operate at a profit. This is not “soaking the rich”; it is saving the rich. Incidentally, it is the only way to assure them the serenity and security which they do not have at the present moment.

      Almost, but not quite, to the full truth: The rich are the problem.

  9. greywarshark 9

    Not when this government has made it quite clear that the rights of people with disabilities can be arbitrarily cast aside.
    Rosemary McDonald in Open Mike 19/1 expressed concerns about euthanasia for the people who need it and want it now, because disability may possibly get caught up in the practice. And that can’t be dismissed as a possibility, under governments which are influenced primarily by thoughts of efficiency and wishes to reduce spending.

    The disabilities lack of support needs to be seen as part of that lack for most other people. Under the neo lib government materialism and capital accretion are the main aims and measures of a worthwhile life. People themselves and their attributes and needs, are at the fringes. They may be called in to centre stage at times, but can be banished to the fringes again quite arbitrarily. The only reason that government does anything for welfare and supporting people is so that they can still pretend that this is a responsive state, is still a democracy for the people. That’s all bullshit at present.

    When, or if, the mass of people who are living monetarily below comfortable standards, and who realise how constricted their human lives have become, actually arouse themselves, there will be change. But lack of vision, and a willingness to work to change must happen. I’m reading a book by a man whose family came to NZ after WW2 and who returned to Europe, revisiting NZ in the 1990s. He was struck at the difference that neo lib had made on the ethos that he experienced.
    At the end of his record of his visit he says:

    The people of NZ have it in their power to use this crucial point in the country’s history to transform the political culture, and map out a new route to the summit. Go for it NZ. Let’s not rely on politicians or messiahs. Each one of us must remember –
    If it is to be, it is up to me.
    Michael Mence 1999

    • Rosemary McDonald 9.1

      Thanks for bringing this issue up again greywarshark…

      I’m going to cut straight to the chase and Godwin be damned.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ich_klage_an

      “A woman suffering from multiple sclerosis pleads with doctors to kill her.[3] Her husband gives her a fatal overdose, and is put on trial, where arguments are put forth that prolonging life is sometimes contrary to nature, and that death is a right as well as a duty.[4] It culminates in the husband’s declaration that he is accusing them of cruelty for trying to prevent such deaths.[5]”

      this movie was commissioned by Goebbels.

      and….https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c2kV83nPWnM

      we should all watch this one…if nothing else it might help the pro euthanasia people understand where the anti brigade are coming from in terms of the disabled community.

      This shit happened within living memory.

    • Ergo Robertina 9.2

      ”And that can’t be dismissed as a possibility, under governments which are influenced primarily by thoughts of efficiency and wishes to reduce spending.”

      The lack of resourcing in disability and palliative care services in New Zealand makes a move toward euthanasia less likely, as those services would need to be better funded to provide a viable alternative if there was a choice.

  10. greywarshark 10

    While revisiting old songs – the lyrics from Lost in Love apply to those of us who love the old NZ we had. Perhaps this can be the theme song for those who fight to retain what was good.

    AIR SUPPLY LYRICS
    “Lost In Love”

    I realize the best part of love is the thinnest slice
    And it don’t count for much
    but I’m not letting go
    I believe there’s still much to believe in

    So lift your eyes if you feel you can
    Reach for a star and I’ll show you a plan
    I figured it out
    What I needed was someone to show me

    You know you can’t fool me
    I’ve been loving you too long
    It started so easy
    You want to carry on
    [Chorus:]

    Lost In Love and I don’t know much
    Was I thinking aloud and fell out of touch?
    But I’m back on my feet and eager to be what you wanted

    So lift your eyes if you feel you can
    Reach for a star and I’ll show you a plan
    I figured it out
    What I needed was someone to show me
    [Chorus]
    Now I’m lost, lost in love, lost in love, lost in love
    Repeat
    http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/airsupply/lostinlove.html

    From the 2005 album, “The Singer and the Song” – old guys with a good message.

    • Paul 11.1

      She is a brilliant cartoonist.

      • Wensleydale 11.1.1

        Agreed. She’s like a less grotesque version of Trace Hodgson (my personal favourite), and her vicious observations never cease to amuse.

    • Once was Tim 11.2

      When I read Paul’s comment “she’s a brilliant cartoonist” I immediately assumed he was referring to Murdock. ((S)he is as well and always has been)

    • Rodel 11.3

      Yes–Murdock on TPPA absolutely Brilliant!

  11. alwyn 12

    There is an interesting article in the latest economist about carbon emissions from ruminants (in this context sheep and cattle for us laymen).
    http://www.economist.com/news/science-and-technology/21688374-researchers-new-zealand-are-trying-prevent-livestock-belching
    It appears that the Governments approach to the problem by funding some scientific research, rather than adopting the Green approach of shooting them all and becoming Vegans is paying off.

    It includes the statement that “means New Zealand’s production of milk has trebled since 1990 while methane emissions from dairy cattle have only doubled over that period”. That means that the methane per unit of milk has dropped by a third”
    It also says “the number of sheep in the country has almost halved, with a concomitant emissions reduction, yet as much lamb and mutton is produced as ever”.
    I hadn’t thought that such spectacular results would really be possible in such a short time.

    Maybe we can help to feed the hungry millions (or billions) of the world after all.

    • weka 12.1

      Still telling blatant lies about the Green Party alwyn 🙄

      We already know how to feed everyone on the planet without destroying it. It’s the neoliberals/capitalists and greedy fucks that are preventing that.

      • Paul 12.1.1

        He knows that.
        He is trolling for a reaction.
        Badly.

      • alwyn 12.1.2

        A simple yes or no.
        Does the New Zealand Green Party think there is too much dairy farming in New Zealand?

        • Draco T Bastard 12.1.2.1

          Well, I do. We need to cut back on the farms and rebuild our natural environment. Having better than 50% of our land mass in farming is poisoning our land. Better to drop it back to ~15% and replant native bush in the land freed up.

          Keep that bush to the tops of hills and significant bush tracts next to streams and rivers and we can then take our treated sewage and drop it on that bush. The bush treats it further and the nutrients run down onto the farms meaning that our farms won’t need artificial fertiliser. The riparian planting next to our rivers and streams will stop run-off from the farms getting into the rivers keeping them pristine.

          Do that and we have sustainable farming and a sustainable society.

        • weka 12.1.2.2

          Everyone who understands ecology knows that there is too much dairy farming in NZ. But that’s not what you said. What you said was a blatant lie about the GP.

          • alwyn 12.1.2.2.1

            Then perhaps you will tell us just what you plan to do with the cows?

            I remember when I was a kid I knew lots of farm children. They all had pet (ie orphaned) lambs. They children were in two groups. One group knew damn well that the lamb was going to the works and that was how they got their pocket money. The others were told, and may even have believed, that the lamb went too to another farm up the road and lived happily ever after.
            I suppose that the Green Party will tell us that they are going to create lovely zoos for the surplus cows and they will happily live out their lives.

            I’ll admit I got a bit carried away about the Vegan touch. I am amazed though how many of the Green supporters I know are of a vegetarian bent and think that every one should follow their example.

            • weka 12.1.2.2.1.1

              Everything that comes out of your mouth about the GP (including the above) is just outright lies about the Green Party. I don’t even believe your anecdotes. You really are a shitty troll, but thanks for giving me even more evidence of how distorted your commenting is, it will be a handy reference.

              • alwyn

                Yes Dear.
                However please amuse me.
                Just which bit of this comment is a lie? After all if there is too much dairy farming in New Zealand we must presume you are going to reduce it, and we are going to have a lot of surplus cows.

                Of course you claim it is ALL lies but that comment on your part clearly falls into the category politely called a terminological inexactitude.
                Now try and point out anything that is a lie in this comment.

                • weka

                  Why would I reply to that? You’re trolling is boring. I’ve already said you’ve given me enough reference material to show what a dick you are when it comes to lying about the GP. I don’t have to explain it, people can see what you are doing, I’ll just keep naming it.

                  • alwyn

                    If you continue to read comments I make, and as far as I know there is nothing to force you to do so, you might remember these quotes from genuinely famous people before you compose a response.

                    George Washington said:
                    “The foolish and wicked practice of profane cursing and swearing is a vice so mean and low that every person of sense and character detests and despises it.”

                    Joseph Cook said:
                    “A single profane expression betrays a [person’s] low breeding.”

                    and Eric Hoffer said
                    “Rudeness is the weak [person’s] imitation of strength.”

                    On the other hand you may be a fan of the old version of the US TV show “The Tonight Show” where Johnny Carson said:
                    “Never use a big word when a little filthy one will do.”

                    • weka

                      Funny, not least because I haven’t been particularly profane in this conversation. And because that’s the best you’ve got?

                      I’m very comfortable swearing in the appropriate context, and the standard is certainly one place where it’s appropriate. Swearing can enrich language and communication as many here know. So I have no problem at all standing up and telling you to fuck off for being a creep.

                      I also think that your inability to present actual arguments that make sense exposes you to more ridicule than you would otherwise get. That is of course up to you. You know how it works here. I’m not a fan of the ridicule culture on ts (or the internet in geneeral) and speak out against it quite a lot, but the inability to form an argument and instead to troll is one area where I think people deserve stronger language than normal, because they’re basically trying to mindfuck with the place and relating with them as normal social humans just doesn’t work.

                      By all means carry on playing your little games, I’m happy to keep pointing out where you are telling lies about the Green Party (although seeing as how you tell a lie pretty much every time you mention them I could probably find a way of shorthanding from now on, I’ll give it some thought).

            • Pat 12.1.2.2.1.2

              obviously the cows will be culled, and sold to the US for hamburger….exactly as they currently are due to stock rationalisation due to low powder price….or possibly sold to china as breeding stock, provided they are red coloring.

        • Paul 12.1.2.3

          Of course there is.

          ‘Agriculture is the dominant use of land in New Zealand and has had the most widespread impact on water quality. In 1993, the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research summarised available data on the quality of water in rivers. They concluded that “lowland river reaches in agriculturally developed catchments are in poor condition” reflecting “agriculturally derived diffuse and point source waste inputs in isolation or in addition to urban or industrial waste inputs”. The key contaminants identified in lowland rivers were dissolved inorganic nitrogen, dissolved reactive phosphorus, sediment and faecal contamination. Small streams in dairy farming areas were identified as being in very poor condition.[2]
          Sediment from erosion of hills and river banks is also a source of pollution of waters.
          In recent years water pollution has increased since stocking rates of grazing animals have become higher, and there is an increasing use of fertilizers. Horticulture, arable farming and plantation forestry generally have a lesser impact than dairy farming.[1]
          In 2001 Fish and Game New Zealand started the high profile “dirty dairying” campaign to highlight the effect of pollution from dairy farming intensification on the ecological health of freshwater environments. As a reaction to this campaign Fonterra, the largest dairy company in New Zealand, along with a number of government agencies instigated the Dairying and Clean Streams Accord to address water pollution due to dairy farming. The aim of the Accord is to limit the access of stock to waterways. Fonterra exports the majority of its produce, and encourages farmers to limit environmental impacts as a method of getting environmentally aware consumers to purchase their products. In a report released in October 2008 Fish and Game and Forest and Bird were highly critical of the Accord.’

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Water_pollution_in_New_Zealand#Agriculture

        • reason 12.1.2.4

          Do we have too many cows in the cruel dairy industry ????

          It depends how much fecal matter and excess nitrogen you are comfortable polluting our rivers,streams, lakes and estuary s with……..

          National are happy with our water ways having so much faecal pathogens that they are unsafe to swim in ……. they have legislated this gift to us.

          But apart from our rivers filling with shit other cow negatives include …….

          These big heavy beasts are hard on the land and require a huge amount of water to produce 1 liter of milk …..

          The dairy farms are mono culture and parasite numbers build up requiring more and more chemical drenches given to the cows …..

          Our current ‘modern’ farming methods using chemical fertilizers are a cheat on nature ……. short term yields of grass/milk may increase but the soil is degrading……….. and the runoff from the salted up soils pollute our water ways….. sometimes killing them with toxic algae blooms

          We import palm kernel as a cattle feed from the corrupt gangster nation Indonesia ……………. tales abound of dead birds, insects, bandages, other seeds and vegetation etc being mixed in and present with this feed …….. with our cut back and slack bio-security under National this could be how foot & mouth disease or other foreign threats like fruit flies enter New Zealand.

          The high milk prices drove up farm prices and farm debt soared with many expensive dairy conversions ……. A fair few farmers are now in the process of going broke and will probably be forced to sell their farms …….. to the highest overseas bidders

          National used record high milk prices to paper over their economic vandalism. …….They seemed blindsided by the fact other countries could breed cows increasing herd numbers and milk production……

          Jumping in boots and all into the dairy boom was nationals great economic plan ………………… That and a property bubble where young New Zealanders are excluded unless they have parents who already own property.

          John Key is our cow boy……………….. 100% pure.

          “Some naively take the view that every drop of water that makes it to the sea is a waste” ……..

          https://garethsworld.com/blog/environment/dairy-dirty-environment/

  12. Sirenia 13

    Before Christmas the media was full of big spending stories. Not surprising considering there are more people in NZ than ever before. But after Christmas there were stories of Christmas spending actually being down and the example of Dick Smith and others. Some people obviously have a lot of money but most are just struggling to get by. Those writing and being interviewed on the big spending stories also have no idea about the stress caused by not having money, so assume everyone has a big income like them.

    • Paul 13.1

      I sense the media was either being played or was making up news for its advertisers.

      • Draco T Bastard 13.1.1

        The MSM have been spinning to make it look like everything is fine. I’m pretty sure that a plurality of the population was wondering how others could have so much.

  13. Paul 14

    Further distractions ahead of signing the TPP.
    Yes, we are allowed to vote for a flag that symbolises our sovereignty.
    But we have no say in our actual sovereignty.
    Rapidly becoming a tin pot dictatorship.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11576769

  14. another white out – as snoop says

    “Somebody was actually like am I gonna watch the motherf***ing Oscars,” he posted. “F*** no. What the f*** am I going to watch that bulls*** for? “They ain’t got no n***** nominated. All these great movies and all this great s*** y’all keep stealing from us. F*** you! F*** you!”

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/entertainment/news/article.cfm?c_id=1501119&objectid=11576717

    • weka 15.1

      While it makes sense for the Academy to try and diversify its membership, what does it say about the existing predominantly white membership that two years in a row it chose all white actor movies?

      • alwyn 15.1.1

        Have you considered the possibility, just once, that the best performances this year were by white men and women? Or do you find the idea unbelievable?

        I quite like watching TV of the NFL (the American Football game).
        Should I start a campaign to have it boycotted, and insist that TVNZ must remove it from their pop-up channel?
        After all, the majority of the players, particularly in the “skilled” positions, are clearly Black. I have only seen one Asian looking man, and he only came on a few times a game to punt the ball.
        Clearly there must be prejudice in picking players if they don’t match the racial makeup of the US.
        Alternatively I can take the view that I am seeing the very best and they happen to be, disproportionally Black men. There, easy isn’t it?

        • marty mars 15.1.1.1

          your possibility is rubbish and you know it – you just have to defend the indefensible – the people making this a bigger and bigger issue are in the industry and know more about this from an industry and ‘people of colour’ point of view than a nobody like you al – you just embarrass yourself like a clod.

          • alwyn 15.1.1.1.1

            Oh dear Marty.
            You really don’t like weka very much do you?
            Why don’t you let him (or her) answer. I don’t think that he (or she) will be greatly impressed by what you are saying.

            • marty mars 15.1.1.1.1.1

              Oh al

              I do like weka and most of her comments and that is known and I’ll take it on the chin if she is unimpressed by my comment to you.

              but what about what I said – do you have an actual response to that per chance???

              • alwyn

                Have a look at what the question was you “clod”. I’ll repeat it for your benefit.

                “Have you considered the possibility, just once, that the best performances this year were by white men and women? Or do you find the idea unbelievable?”

                Your answer was “your possibility is rubbish”.

                You therefore believe that weka is completely unable to consider that question? Hard wired and without any ability to think about something?
                I am disappointed that you think that way about her.

                • you seem to be really struggling with this al, allow me to help

                  This thread started with a link showing many people of colour within the industry (“On Monday, Spike Lee, this year’s Oscar honouree for lifetime achievement, and Jada Pinkett Smith announced they will boycott the ceremony in protest.”) and even Academy president Cheryl Boone Isaacs saying there was an issue.

                  now sure maybe you could put your offensive, ridiculous and self serving “possibility” to them but we know that won’t happen don’t we – courage lacking no doubt and I’m sure snoop would love to get a tweet or text from you about your “possibility” but let’s just do a big LOL now around that one.

                  So you really are just a clod exposing your ingrained and wide ignorance but the good news is this is par for your course so the very low expectations people have of you are being met. Well done you.

                • weka

                  As Paul pointed out, alwyn, you’re trolling, badly. At least have the sense to have some coherence to your trolling. And please stop making shit up about people (the GP, marty just now), not only do you look like a dork, it makes the conversations boring.

        • weka 15.1.1.2

          “Have you considered the possibility, just once, that the best performances this year were by white men and women? Or do you find the idea unbelievable?”

          It wasn’t once, it was 2 years running (plus all the other years its happened in the past), so no, I don’t find it believable. It’s also only believable if you think that the films and actors nominated for the Oscars are there solely on merit. If you believe that, and that there are no commercial, political or cultural dynamics at play, you are a fool.

          • alwyn 15.1.1.2.1

            Of course they, or at least the films, aren’t there on “merit”. It doesn’t mean that the voters from the Academy were bigoted though which appears to be your conjecture.
            If they were truly bigoted the would hardly be giving a lifetime award to Spike Lee would they? He is, as I’m sure you are aware, black.
            There have been three black men and one black woman who have won best actor/actress Oscars this century. The voters can’t really be totally anti-black can they?
            As far as an opinion from “Snoop”. Long experience has taught me that the greater the percentage of obscenities in someone’s speech the stupider they are.

      • Magisterium 15.1.2

        IMHO it’s not that the Academy members are white – it’s that they’re old.

        • Sacha 15.1.2.1

          stale crackers

        • weka 15.1.2.2

          Thanks Magisterium, that might just answer the question. Because I’m sitting here thinking, we know what happened last year so what were these people thinking this year? Or were they not thinking?

  15. Free Ko Haapu

    Ko Haapu was a bodyguard for Prime Minister John Key in Afghanistan in 2010.
    He has been detained in Perth since October and faces deportation because he is a member of a bikie gang, despite having no criminal record.

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/294451/'he's-let-down,-he's-upset,-he's-confused

    Free Ko Haapu

    • Magisterium 16.1

      Why should I care? Association with a bikie gang can get you deported, he associated with a bikie gang, now he’s getting deported.

      • Macro 16.1.1

        We don’t expect you to care.

        We do expect NZers to be treated with decency however – but that of course is a foreign concept for RWN ers

      • marty mars 16.1.2

        “Why should I care?”

        I don’t care if you care, the post was for those that do care, or I could write that less politely if you like

      • weka 16.1.3

        I’d love to see the legal definition of ‘associate with’. But of course there doesn’t have to be because Australia is using a proto-fascist process that is discretionary and at the whim of the person in charge.

      • greywarshark 16.1.4

        Great logical progression. Can you pass on to the Oz gummint another clear logical progression that will bowl them over, and end up with the Kiwis and others not being held by these nOzties on flimsy charges and allowed to return to wherever they want to be?

      • instrider 16.1.5

        According to stuff.co.nz he is facing criminal charges and has a court date. His own lawyer says the deportation issue is extra judicial, so he won’t be in court for that. So someone is telling fibs about his history.

        Note that NZ too has a history of not letting people from the same gang in because we don’t like their activities. Good to see the left is cuddling crims again.

        • reason 16.1.5.1

          cuddling crims ?

          Do you seriously think that the roastbusters would never have been charged if Helen Clark was prime minister ????????????

          Do you think helen Clark would have promoted someone like either Mike Sabin or Judith Collins in justice and law areas ??????

          What sort of police force and justice sector could john keys “expert” Mike Sabin possibly give us ?????

          And apparently visitors to our country are getting sexually assaulted by our border staff if they are visiting critics of the National Government ….http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10830683

          National seem to make things more criminal …………..

          And don’t even get me started on their links and support for and from the violent crime creating Alcohol industry ……..

          Didn’t you know National won us the world cup as number one for domestic violence ????

          John Key and the nats would like to extend a special thanks to all the battered woman and abused children who helped make this dream come true ………………..

          Serco a blinding searchlight in Nationals brighter future will try and pick up the profit .

    • Macro 16.2

      Key of course can’t remember him and doesn’t want to know.
      Ko Haapu has been detained since Nov last year. He was arrested after visiting a friend in prison.
      Dutton has been informed I understand – but he is a grubby piece of work and should never have the responsibility of being a Minister. We cannot expect him to act with any decency.
      Now the gulags of Australia under Duttons watch are causing at least one detainee every other day to attempt to kill themselves. If Dutton ever sets foot in NZ he should be arrested and tried for torture.

      • Magisterium 16.2.1

        Agreed on all counts.

        But getting deported is the logical and predictable outcome of joining a bikie gang in Australia without Australian permanent residency or citizenship.

        • greywarshark 16.2.1.1

          Hold on. Taiho. I seem to remember that Ko Haapu is not a member of a bikie gang but is friendly with some who are. Which if true, takes him a step back from the original premise here. If you know different just say.

          That gets us into draconian control laws, specifying that innocent members of the public can be arrested on any arbitrary thing that some shithead doesn’t like after he got pissed yesterday, his daughter gave him the fingers, and his wife didn’t give him anything. ‘Right I’m going to get someone today, he growled teeth gritted.’ (I should write for The Herald. I can make up stuff that is just likelihood but sounds quite feasible.)

          • Magisterium 16.2.1.1.1

            Aussie media and the Immigration Department describe him as a member. But that’s not even really relevant, because the Australian government’s criterion for failing the character test is “association” not “membership”.

            • weka 16.2.1.1.1.1

              Do you really believe that it’s ok for immigration status to be determined by a single interpretation of ‘association’? It’s like the academic who was denied normal academic access to information held by the NZ police because he associated with gangs (i.e. he interacted with them when he did researched on them). What if someone had a child with a gang member and thus ‘associated’ with them over parenting but was themselves not a gang member, not a criminal and not a bad influence on society?

              • Magisterium

                Do you really believe that it’s ok for immigration status to be determined by a single interpretation of ‘association’?

                No. But it’s the law. Visiting your buddy the gang boss in jail when you’re on a visitor visa and the Australian government has a hardon for cracking down on gangs AND deporting people is just fucking stupid.

                • weka

                  I was under the impression that it’s not that clear to the general public and/or people beng affected.

                  • Magisterium

                    Hey, if you emigrate to another country and live there on a visitor visa without understanding its conditions, that’s fucking stupid.

        • Pat 16.2.1.2

          then put him on a plane to NZ….not hold him in isolation in a max security prison for months with no release date or charge….or hearing

  16. Chris 17

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/world/australia/76070676/kiwi-david-petersen-named-as-sydney-police-station-victim

    Odds on this guy and his family have been shafted by Strayan gummit’s hate policies towards NZers?

    • greywarshark 17.1

      How many of the Kiwi detainees are white (pink to be factual)? White Kiwis can be law breakers too. Remember the drugs gang in the 70’s?

  17. Murray Simmonds 18

    This is worth a look:

    http://inflationdata.com/inflation/Inflation_Articles/Inflation_and_Recession.asp

    Why?

    ‘Cos the leading item on RNZ National news this lunch time is that inflation is the lowest its been in quite some time . . . .

    And yes, Pat, I’d noticed all that sudden media spin on our “ruckstar” economy too!

    I suppose its what the idle rich like to portray on the surface while furiously paddling underneath as they try to find a way to save their millions from the impending economic collapse.

    And while we are at the “gloom and doom” stuff, special thanks to Paul (above) for the link “Why this slump has legs”. That’s an absolutely brilliant article that everyone should read.

    Funny, that. I’d picked 2017 as “crunch” year, but its looking increasingly likely that it might come sooner than that.

  18. seeker 19

    This article is a bit of a warning to us all I think.:

    The Cayman Islands…..home to 100000 companies and no tax, more companies than people…..business heaven?
    (……a satellite of planet key?……. a popular watering hole of the International Democratic Union?)
    Check out “Ugland House” … it rather lives up to it’s name.

    http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/jan/18/the-cayman-islands-home-to-100000-companies-and-the-850-packet-of-fish-fingers

  19. Very, very good. I did a paper on Mana Wahine and I was amazed by the distortions created via colonisation and christianity around the role, prestige and mana of women within Te Ao Māori – a shocking revelation for me and really showed the insidious and totally destructive force of colonisation.

    Ngahuia Murphy has received $110,000 from the Health Research Council to complete her PhD studies into Māori beliefs of the womb or whare tangata.
    “I am looking at some of the pre-colonial ceremonies and ritual knowledge traditions around the whare tangata and I’m going to be tracing those ceremonial practices into the context of today.”
    In order to complete her masters Ngahuia Murphy read texts from colonial ethnographers, who studied Māori in the early days.
    “What they have written about Māori women and particularly Māori women’s reproductive body is that it is a source of inferiority in our culture, which completely contradicts our cultural paradigms about the significance of the whare tangata as the house of humanity.”
    Ms Murphy said accounts of Māori girls and women menstruating were derogatory and written as if menstruation was viewed as a dirty thing.
    “What is really disturbing is what they wrote 150 years ago has been reproduced across history up until contemporary times, creating these really oppressive, really powerful narratives about the inferiority of Māori women in our culture.”
    “This is what I want to challenge.”

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/294271/maori-women-viewed-as-'inferior'-by-settlers

  20. Macro 21

    [Hey Macro for reasons that will at some stage become relevant can’t let this comment through at this stage sorry – MS]

  21. Draco T Bastard 22

    PM Wages War On Public Opinion Over Flag

    National is trampling over the laws of this country by flying the alternative fern flag alongside the New Zealand flag on 250 sites, including the Auckland Harbour Bridge, says New Zealand First.

    “National is acting like an advertising agency – not like a responsible government.

    “It’s yet more disgraceful behaviour in the entire $26 million flag farce.

    “Mr Key and National know they face humiliation in the referendum. This latest flag flying ploy shows they are desperate not to be losers.

    “To fly the referendum flag winner beside the New Zealand flag is an exercise in deception and suggesting that it has the same status. Legally it has none.

    There’s nothing that I can add to that. National have gone off the deep end with their desire to change the flag against the wishes of the people.

    • tc 22.1

      More distractions, it works in their favour so they get the MSM shills to keep the JK vanity flag fest frothy.

      How many state houses have they flogged so far?

  22. cogito 23

    The Lockwood tea towel again….

    “Alternative NZ flag to fly over 250 sites”
    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/294530/alternative-nz-flag-to-fly-over-250-sites

    Time to give Key a taste of “mass movement” by rejecting his cynical manipulation of the whole flag process and voting for the current NZ flag.

    **Keep the NZ flag**

  23. Ffloyd 24

    Alternative flag…..is that the one with the dead cat on it???

  24. Ffloyd 25

    Yay!!! JC is back in Christchurch rattling cages. Go John!!

    • Pat 25.1

      yep, good innit…..they ( gov and ICs) will have been getting ready to man the pumps now he has a platform back

  25. weka 26

    I haven’t quite followed all of this but it appears to be saying that Canada cannot legalise cannabis due to existing international treaties but individual states in the US can because the Federal Government in the US cannot compel individual states to make something illegal.

    http://www.msn.com/en-ca/news/canada/trudeau-i-want-to-legalize-weed-but-they-wont-let-me/ar-CCvT8H?li=AAggNb9

    • Macro 26.1

      Hmmm that could be right. Maybe Canada could follow the same route. Provincial Governments are fairly autonomous – certainly you know when you transit from Ontario to Quebec – its almost like going from one country to another – well it is in a way. Just an accident in history and a one day war, and French Canadians won’t let you forget it. 🙂

  26. Draco T Bastard 27

  27. Paul 28

    Lifeboats at the ready.

    The Standard should do a thread on the imminent financial economic crisis.
    I have provided many links to help start this conversation.

    Why This Slump Has Legs
    http://www.theautomaticearth.com/2016/01/why-this-slump-has-legs/

    Hollande: France Is in An “Emergency Economic Situation”
    http://fortruss.blogspot.fr/2016/01/hollande-france-is-in-emergency.html?m=1

    ‘Dairy futures point to weak demand’
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11575842

    NZ sharemarket falls again
    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/business/294349/nz-sharemarket-falls-again

    Auckland property officially off the boil
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11576146

    Liam Dann: Why low prices are bad news
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11576764

    Weak growth and dairy prices weigh on kiwi
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11575715

    ‘IMF warns global growth could be ‘derailed’ over the next two years
    http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/world/76066458/imf-warns-global-growth-could-be-derailed-over-the-next-two-years

    With wave of Iranian oil imminent, a shudder in Saudi Arabia
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11575666

    China GDP drops to 25-year low
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11576210

    • You’re a good writer, Paul. Howabout you write something yourself and send it in via the contribute link? Or, if you prefer, you can email a draft to me and I’ll edit it. Day off tomorrow, so I’ve got a bit of time to colloborate on a post, if you’re keen.

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  • The Abigail Article; Martyn Bradbury’s Article, and My Response
    . . This blogpost is different to my usual format of reporting on issues… Since July 1011, I have blogged on a variety of political issues; near always political and/or environmental; mostly highly critical of the previous National Government. Other issues included Israeli occupation of Palestinian lands and repression of ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    3 days ago
  • Police will have to wear silly Buckingham Palace hats from now on, says Police Minister
    Those close to the Police Minister believe the initiative may be the result of Nash “seeing a great deal” on AliExpress. In a move that comes seemingly out of nowhere, Police Minister Stuart Nash announced this afternoon that he expects all frontline staff to don bearskin hats, famously worn by ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    4 days ago
  • A sensible crackdown
    The government has released its Arms Legislation Bill, containing the second tranche of changes to gun laws following the March 15 massacre. And it all looks quite sensible: a national gun register, higher penalties for illegal possession and dealing, tighter restrictions on arms dealers and shooting clubs, and a shorter ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • California bans private prisons
    Private prisons are a stain on humanity. Prison operators explicitly profit from human misery, then lobby for longer prisons terms so they can keep on profiting. And in the US, prison companies run not only local and state prisons, but also Donald Trump's immigration concentration camps. Faced with this moral ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Why PPPs are a bad idea
    When National was in power, they were very keen on Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) - basicly, using private companies to finance public infrastructure as a way of hiding debt from the public. They were keen on using them for everything - roads, schools, hospitals. But as the UK shows, that "service" ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • A Movement That No Longer Moves.
    Moving And Shaking: There was a time when people spoke matter-of-factly about the “labour movement” – a political phenomenon understood to embrace much more than the Labour Party. Included within the term’s definition was the whole trade union movement – many of whose members looked upon the Labour Party as ...
    4 days ago
  • NZ ‘left’ politically embracing extreme postmodernism
    by Philip Ferguson Much of the left, even people who formally identify as marxists, have collapsed politically in the face of postmodern gender theory of the sort pioneered by American philosopher Judith Butler. For Butler even biological sex is socially constructed. “If the immutable character of sex is contested, perhaps ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    4 days ago
  • The obvious question
    The media is reporting that the (alleged) Labour party sexual assaulter has resigned from their job at Parliament, which means hopefully he won't be turning up there making people feel unsafe in future. Good. But as with everything about this scandal, it just raises other questions. Most significantly: why the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • The moment I found out that you found out, I acted swiftly
    By Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern I am every bit as angry as you are. I am every bit as disappointed as you must be. The people with power, oversight and the ability to do something about these processes within the Labour Party should be ashamed. Whoever those people are, I ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    5 days ago
  • This is why people hate property developers
    Property developers think there is an "oversupply" of houses in Auckland:High turnover rates and falling prices may be a sign that there are too many new houses going in to some parts of Auckland, commentators say. [...] Property developer David Whitburn said there was a "bit of an oversupply" in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Australia to Pacific: “Fuck you, you can all drown”
    World leaders are meeting in New York in two weeks for the 2019 Climate Action Summit, where they are expected to announce new and more ambitious targets to stop the world from burning. But the Australian Prime Minister won't be there, despite being in the USA at the time:Scott Morrison ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Implausible ignorance
    Labour Party president Nigel Haworth resigned yesterday over the party's sexual assault scandal. But while that's good news, its unlikely to take away the stench of a coverup. Because according to Paula Bennett in Parliament yesterday, pretty much everyone in the Prime Minister's office was involved as well:I have been ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Labour’s Fatal Flaw.
     Two-Faced? Labour insiders' commitment to the neoliberal status quo puts them at odds with their party’s membership; its trade union affiliates; and a majority of Labour voters, but this only serves to strengthen the perception they have of themselves as a special elite. Among the lesser breeds, they’ll talk up a ...
    5 days ago
  • Ten reasons the Tories do NOT want an election
    There has been a lot of talk about Boris Johnson wanting an election, and he has blustered with great gusto about 'chicken' Jeremy Corbyn refusing one, but I think there are many reasons why he is secretly glad he has been refused the opportunity:The Tories are an utter rabble,tearing themselves ...
    5 days ago
  • Prorogation Illegal, rule Scottish judges
    Scottish appeal court judges have declared that Boris Johnson’s decision to suspend parliament in the run-up to the October Brexit deadline is unlawful. The three judges, chaired by Lord Carloway, Scotland’s most senior judge, overturned an earlier ruling that the courts did not have the powers to interfere in the prime ...
    5 days ago
  • Let me explain what I meant by Everyday New Zealanders
    By Simon Bridges. The following is a press release from the office of Simon Bridges, leader of The National Party. Key ora, New Zealand. Happy Maori Language Week. Look, I’m writing to you today because I want to clear something up. There’s been a lot of kerfuffle around some things ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    6 days ago
  • Yes, the SIS is subject to the Public Records Act
    I understand there's some stuff going round about how the SIS "was removed from the list of public offices covered by the Public Records Act in 2017". The context of course being their records derived from US torture, which will be disposed of or sealed. The good news is that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • An evidence-based discussion of the Canadian fluoride/IQ study
    Dr. Christopher Labos and Jonathan Jarry discuss the recent Canadian fluoride/IQ research. They provide an expert analysis of the paper and its problems. Click on image to go to podcast. The critical debate about the recent ...
    6 days ago
  • Climate Change: Australia in denial
    Australia is burning down again, and meanwhile its natural disaster minister is denying climate change:Australia’s minister responsible for drought and natural disasters, David Littleproud, has said that he doesn’t “know if climate change is manmade”. Clarifying earlier comments that the question is “irrelevant” when considering the Coalition government’s response to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Philippines activist speaking on the Duterte tyranny
    Auckland Philippines Solidarity is excited to host Professor Judy Taguiwalo for a speaking tour of NZ in September. She is a well-known activist in the Philippines and was a political prisoner under the Marcos dictatorship. Professor Taguiwalo briefly served as a Cabinet member under President Duterte but was forced from ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • Disgust
    I have no special insights to offer on the Labour sexual assault coverup. All I have is disgust. Disgust that an organisation could fail its people so badly. Disgust that they punished the victims rather than the perpetrator. Disgust that its party hacks are apparently blaming the victims for demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Speak Up for Women calls out Greens’ censorship
    This open letter to the Green Party was penned after an opinion piece by Jill Abigail, a feminist and founding member of the party, was censored by the Greens’ leadership. (Redline has reprinted her article here).The intolerance of the Green Party leaders and their acceptance of the misogyny of gender ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • Member’s Day: End of Life Choice, part 3
    Today is a Member's day, and David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill continues its slow crawl through its committee stage. They're spending the whole day on it today, though the first hour is likely to be spent on voting left over from last time. After that they'll move on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Flight to Los Angeles turned back after passengers decide they don’t want to go anymore
    An ambitious plan to fly to Los Angeles petered out into a brief sight-seeing trip and a desire to return home and get some sleep before work tomorrow. Air New Zealand has confirmed a flight to Los Angeles last night was turned back about a quarter of the way into ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    6 days ago
  • Indigenous Futures: defuturing and futuring – an analytical framework for policy development?
    There appears to be consensus – by omission – that the concept of indigenous futures should be accepted at face value. So I scavenged the internet to see if I could locate an academic descriptor or a framework around how we think about it as a concept, and whether it ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    7 days ago
  • Cadbury rumoured to be releasing the Pineapple Trump
    Here’s another novelty chocolate to shove in your gob, New Zealand Cadbury could be seeking to make itself great again with a rumoured new release: Pineapple Trumps, a spin on its classic chocolate-encased pineapple treat and do-it-yourself tooth remover. The global confectionery manufacturer and bumbling “before” character in an infomercial, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    7 days ago
  • The coming resource war.
    During my time in the Pentagon I had the privilege of sitting down with military leaders and defence and security officials from a variety of Latin American nations. Sometimes I was present as a subordinate assistant to a senior US defence department official, sometimes as part of a delegation that ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    7 days ago
  • Māori Language Week with The Civilian
    Kia ora, Aotearoa. It’s that magical time of year. Te Wiki o te Reo Māori. In English, the week that frightens talk radio. As you probably know by now, all your favourite media outlets are participating, some more successfully than others. Stuff has changed its name to Puna for the ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    7 days ago
  • Will Horizons act on climate change?
    Local body elections are coming up next month. And it looks like all Palmerston North candidates for Horizons (the Manawatu-Whanganui Regional Council) want to take action on climate change:Climate change is set to be a key issue in Palmerston North for the next three years if those wanting to get ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • BORA reform is stalled
    Eighteen months ago, the government promised to strengthen the Bill of Rights Act, by explicitly affirming the power of the courts to issue declarations of inconsistency and requiring Parliament to formally respond to them. So how's that going? I was curious, so I asked for all advice about the proposal. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Corbyn and Brexit
    As the Brexit saga staggers on, the focus is naturally enough on the Prime Minister and his attempts to achieve Brexit “do or die”. But the role played by the Leader of the Opposition is of almost equal interest and complexity. The first problem for Jeremy Corbyn is that he ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    7 days ago
  • A ditch for him to die in
    Last week, English Prime Minister Boris Johnson boldly declared that he would rather die be dead in a ditch than delay Brexit. Unfortunately for him, the UK parliament accepted the challenge, and promptly dug one for him. The "rebellion bill" requires him to ask for and secure yet another temporary ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Warning! Warning! Danger Jacinda Ardern! Danger Marama Davidson! Warning!
    Lost In Political Space: The most important takeaway from this latest Labour sexual assault scandal, which (if I may paraphrase Nixon’s White House counsel’s, John Dean’s, infamous description of Watergate) is “growing like a cancer” on the premiership, is the Labour Party organisation’s extraordinary professional paralysis in the face of ...
    1 week ago
  • Union solidarity with Ihumatao land occupation
    by Daphna Whitmore Every Sunday for the past two months unionists from First Union, with supporters from other unions, have set out to the Ihumatao land protest, put up gazebos and gas barbeques, and cooked food for a few hundred locals and supporters who have come from across the country. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: The wrong kind of trees?
    Newsroom today has an excellent, in-depth article on pine trees as carbon sinks. The TL;DR is that pine is really good at soaking up carbon, but people prefer far-less efficient native forests instead. Which is understandable, but there's two problems: firstly, we've pissed about so long on this problem that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • No freedom of speech in Turkey
    Canan Kaftancioglu is a Turkish politician and member of the opposition Republican People's Party (CHP). Like most modern politicians, she tweets, and uses the platform to criticise the Turkish government. She has criticised them over the death of a 14-year-old boy who was hit by a tear gas grenade during ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Speaker: Tadhg Stopford: Why I’m standing for the ADHB
    Hi there, just call me Tim.We face tough problems, and I’d like to help, because there are solutions.An Auckand District Health Board member has nominated me for as a candidate for the ADHB, because her MS-related pain and fatigue is reduced with hemp products from Rotorua.  Nothing else helped her. If I ...
    1 week ago
  • Good little vassals
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security has published their report on whether the SIS and GCSB had any complicity in American torture. And its damning. The pull quote is this:The Inquiry found both agencies, but to a much greater degree, the NZSIS, received many intelligence reports obtained from detainees who, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Who Shall We Turn To When God, And Uncle Sam, Cease To Defend New Zealand?
    Bewhiskered Cassandra? Professor Hugh White’s chilling suggestion, advanced to select collections of academic, military and diplomatic Kiwi experts over the course of the past week, is that the assumptions upon which Australia and New Zealand have built their foreign affairs and defence policies for practically their entire histories – are ...
    1 week ago
  • The Politics of Opposition
    For most of the time I was a British MP, my party was out of government – these were the Thatcher years, when it was hard for anyone else to get a look-in. As a front-bencher and shadow minister, I became familiar with the strategies required in a parliamentary democracy ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • More expert comments on the Canadian fluoride-IQ paper
    The Green et al (2019) fluoride/IQ is certainly controversial – as would be expected from its subject (see If at first you don’t succeed . . . statistical manipulation might help and Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear). Anti-fluoride campaigners have been actively promoting it ...
    1 week ago
  • The return to guerrilla war in Colombia
    by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh On August 29th a video in which veteran FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) commander Iván Márquez announced that they had taken up arms again was released. There was no delay in the reaction to it, from longtime Liberal Party figure and former president Uribe, for ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Air New Zealand identifies this enormous plot of unused land as possible second airport site
    Air New Zealand couldn’t believe its luck that this seemingly ideal piece of real estate had so far gone entirely unnoticed. Air New Zealand’s search for a site to build a second Auckland Airport may have made a breakthrough this afternoon, after employees scanning Google satellite imagery spotted a huge, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Redline on the Labour Party
    No-one on the anti-capitalist left in this country today puts forward a case that Labour is on the side of the working class.  There are certainly people who call themselves ‘socialist’ who do, but they are essentially liberals with vested interests in Labourism – often for career reasons. Nevertheless, there ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • New Fisk
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour’s failure
    When National was in government and fucking over the poor for the benefit of the rich, foodbanks were a growth industry. And now Labour is in charge, nothing has changed: A huge demand for emergency food parcels means the Auckland City Mission is struggling to prepare for the impending arrival ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Ardern attempts to vaccinate Clarke Gayford live on television to prove that it’s safe
    Gayford, pictured here on The Project, before things got wildly out of control. A bold public relations move by the Government to encourage parents to vaccinate their children has gone horribly wrong. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern appeared on tonight’s episode of Three’s The Project, where the plan was for her ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Has Mr. Whippy gone too far by parking on our front lawns?
    Mr. Whippy’s business model has driven it down a dark road of intimidation. Residents in major centres around the country are becoming disgruntled by the increasingly aggressive actions of purported ice cream company Mr. Whippy, who have taken to parking on people’s front lawns and doorsteps in a desperate attempt ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Cleaning up the water
    Today the government released its Action Plan for Healthy Waterways, aimed at cleaning up our lakes and rivers. Its actually quite good. There will be protection for wetlands, better standards for swimming spots, a requirement for continuous improvement, and better standards for wastewater and stormwater. But most importantly, there's a ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Fronting up
    Today I appeared before the Environment Committee to give an oral submission on the Zero Carbon Bill. Over 1,500 people have asked to appear in person, so they've divided into subcommittees and are off touring the country, giving people a five minute slot each. The other submitters were a mixed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear
    Anti-fluoride activists have some wealthy backers – they are erecting billboards misrepresenting the Canadian study on many New Zealand cities – and local authorities are ordering their removal because of their scaremongering. Many New Zealanders ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Democracy – I Don’t Think So
    So, those who “know best” have again done their worst. While constantly claiming to be the guardians of democracy and the constitution, and respecters of the 2016 referendum result, diehard Remainers (who have never brought themselves to believe that their advice could have been rejected) have striven might and main ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • Government says it will now build just one really nice home
    Following publication of this article, the Ministry has requested it to be noted that this supplied image is not necessarily representative of what the final house will look like, and it “probably won’t be that nice.” As part of today’s long-anticipated reset of the Government’s flagship KiwiBuild policy, Housing Minister ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Imperialism and your cup of coffee
    Over the next week or two we will be running three synopses of parts of the opening chapter of John Smith’s Imperialism in the 21st Century (New York, Monthly Review Press, 2016).  The synopsis and commentary below is written by Phil Duncan. Marx began Capital not with a sweeping historical ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Still juking the stats
    The State Services Commission and Ombudsman have released another batch of OIA statistics, covering the last six months. Request volumes are up, and the core public service is generally handling them within the legal timeframe, though this may be because they've learned to extend rather than just ignore things. And ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Hard News: Time for a New Deal: 25 years on
    In 1994, I was editing an ambitious street mag called Planet, from a fabled office at at 309 Karangahape Road. The thirteenth issue of the magazine was published in the winter of that year and its cover embodied a particularly ambitious goal: the end of cannabis prohibition.I wanted to do ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Not impressed
    KiwiBuild was one of the Ardern government's core policies. The government would end the housing crisis and make housing affordable again by building 100,000 new homes. Of course, it didn't work out like that: targets weren't met, the houses they did build were in the wrong place, and the whole ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Solar beats coal
    As the climate crisis escalates, it is now obvious that we need to radically decarbonise our economy. The good news is that its looking easy and profitable for the energy sector. Wind is already cheaper than fossil fuels, and now solar is too:The levellised cost of solar PV has fallen ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • A Step Too Far.
    A Crown Asset? For reasons relating to its own political convenience, the Crown pretends to believe that “No one owns the water.” To say otherwise would re-vivify the promises contained in the Treaty of Waitangi – most particularly those pertaining to the power of the chiefs and their proprietary rights ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Where Money Comes From
    Most people would say, no doubt, that they have a pretty good idea of what money is. They live with the reality of money every day. It is what is needed to buy the necessities of life and to maintain a decent standard of living. You get money, they would ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • Banned by the Green Party leadership: Jill Abigail on women’s rights and trans rights
    The article below was an opinion piece that appeared in the Spring 2019 issue of Te Awa (the NZ Green Party’s newsletter) and on the Greens website.  In keeping with their policy of hostility to women defending women’s right to female-only spaces, Green bureaucrats have since removed the opinion piece.  ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • The fallacy of the proximity argument.
    Longer term readers may remember my complaining that, as a political scientist, it is burdensome to have non-political scientists wanting to engage me about politics. No layperson would think to approach an astrophysicist and lecture him/her on the finer details of quarks and black holes, but everybody with an opinion ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    2 weeks ago
  • Where We Stood: Chris Trotter Replies To Stevan Eldred-Grigg.
    Joining The Fight: Stevan Eldred-Grigg's argument for New Zealand staying out of the Second World War fails not only on the hard-headed grounds of preserving the country’s strategic and economic interests; and not just on the soft-hearted grounds of duty and loyalty to the nation that had given New Zealand ...
    2 weeks ago

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