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Open mike 21/04/2022

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, April 21st, 2022 - 94 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 …

94 comments on “Open mike 21/04/2022 ”

  1. Stephen D 1

    https://www.newsroom.co.nz/council-disowns-report-revealing-consent-breaches

    This story alone explains why we need Three Waters. And why iwi must be involved.

    • RedLogix 1.1

      First of all I have personally been involved in designing and building a very similar consent offtake monitoring system – only somewhat simpler as it involved just one weir, one offtake gate and one downstream flow. What seems pretty simple turns out to be a fair bit more complex that you might expect – but in the end I got it running extremely well. We took the need to get it right very seriously and it is one of those projects that I look back with pride. Put simply, all the years I was aware of afterward we never breached consent rules for even a minute.

      This Canterbury scheme however seems far more complex than my small system and I am not in the least surprised that from time to time it has allowed breaches of consent. Especially where there are substantial manually controlled gates involved and ambiguous, low resolution data sources.

      Nor am I in the least surprised that a Greenpeace spokesperson would put the worst case 'shocker' interpretation on all this. Nor would it surprise me if ECAN management historically failed to fully understand the limitations of the data they were working using and the weak assumptions they were using to determine compliance.

      However the article goes on to describe the steps taken since 2019 to greatly improve matters – to the point where:

      “Since this more accurate monitoring has been put in place very few exceedances have occurred, and we are generally satisfied with the rate of compliance with the 30 cumec limit.”

      That looks more like a technical success story than reason to hand over effective control of the asset to the iwi chiefs.

    • Drowsy M. Kram 1.2

      https://www.stats.govt.nz/indicators/river-water-quality-clarity-and-turbidity

      Yep, iwi should be involved. Framing Three Waters as an iwi vs kiwi issue is just sad, as are the views of the 'creative' behind the 2005 electioneering slogan. Racism, both casual and strident, will continue to be mined/fuelled for political and other purposes – sad.

      https://teara.govt.nz/en/photograph/33891/iwikiwi-billboard

      https://www.newsroom.co.nz/ideasroom/dame-anne-salmond-iwi-and-kiwi-beyond-the-binary

      Give Nothing To Racism (2-minute video; Taika Waititi / NZ Human Right Commission)
      Racism starts small. Sometimes it lives in everyday actions and comments that we laugh off, nod in agreement to, excuse, and therefore accept. But we don’t have to. We can stop casual racism from growing into something more extreme. We can give it no encouragement. No respect. No place. No power. We can give it nothing. http://www.givenothing.co.nz

      https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/national/442497/taika-waititi-fronts-anti-racism-campaign-aimed-at-teachers

      • joe90 1.2.1

        Framing Three Waters as an iwi vs kiwi issue is just sad,

        It's a cynical ploy to frame 3Waters as zero-sum, concession to Iwi is a loss to Kiwis. A deliberate effort to cast Māori as potential wrong doers, the blame-worthy enemy who's going to steal your shit, to engage and enrage the base.

        • gsays 1.2.1.1

          I have for a long time thought that what is good for Maori is good for all of us.

          I bemoan the state of my local wai, the Oroua, not much chop from Feilding south

  2. Stephen D 2

    This one may well be a technical success story. There are plenty of others where Ecan has not down such a great job. Nitrate levels, being an example.

  3. joe90 3

    Eighty years ago hundreds of thousands of Poles were deported to forced labour camps in Russia's far east The majority of those deported were women and children.

    Russia's at it again.

    https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/1516758940561948672.html

  4. weka 4

    More sexism. SSDD and just as tedious when it was the original manels

    • weka 4.1

      This is misogyny, far beyond tedious.

      • Sabine 4.1.1

        just found this and thought you might find it interesting.

        Lupron and side effects. Btw, it appears that these women got lupron to prevent early puperty and / or promote a 'taller' growth. Madness.

        https://revealnews.org/article/women-say-drug-used-to-halt-puberty-has-ruined-their-lives/

        • Anker 4.1.1.1

          When are people going to wake up to the fact that gender affirming medicines for teens with Gender dysphoria is dangerous

          • Sabine 4.1.1.1.1

            Like with the Contergan Children (thalidomide) in Germany. When they and their injuries, their lack of sexual organs, their lack of sexual function, their inability to orgasm, their bodily issues – young people on crutches for life, etc etc etc, when all that becomes so public and so everywhere that you can not hide these children away anymore, then maybe something will change. So probably in a decade or two. And even then you will find that those that did the surgeries, that wrote the prescriptions etc will claim that they did it to safe lifes, and not to fill their coffers, even though their coffers are overflowing with blood money.

          • Molly 4.1.1.1.2

            Well, apparently when they look for robust clinical evidence of benefits – and find none.

            Cue:

            Netherlands; https://www.voorzij.nl/more-research-is-urgently-needed-into-transgender-care-for-young-people-where-does-the-large-increase-of-children-come-from/

            Finland; https://segm.org/Finland_deviates_from_WPATH_prioritizing_psychotherapy_no_surgery_for_minors

            Sweden; https://segm.org/segm-summary-sweden-prioritizes-therapy-curbs-hormones-for-gender-dysphoric-youth

            France; https://segm.org/France-cautions-regarding-puberty-blockers-and-cross-sex-hormones-for-youth

            the UK in the form of the Interim Cass Review; https://cass.independent-review.uk/publications/interim-report/

            But here in NZ, we were late to the party, and it was only 2020 when the curriculum guidelines for Relationships and Sex Education were created and slapped on as an addition to the TKI – from the Ministry of Education.

            For those unaware, the TKI guidelines set out the curriculum for all primary and secondary students in NZ. They specify what learning outcomes are needed, to meet curriculum requirements. Curriculum resources can therefore be created by teachers, schools or purchased from third-party organisations.

            https://hpe.tki.org.nz/guidelines-and-policies/relationships-and-sexuality-education/

            Guidelines can be found here on this page for both primary and secondary students as a pdf download.

            There is a lot to unpick – and justifiably critique in these documents – but the one relevant to this point can be found in both documents (Pg 30 of Yrs 1-8 guide):

            In science, ākonga can:

            • consider variations in puberty, including the role of hormone blockers

            This means that every child within the NZ education system is introduced to the idea – (and due to the diversity of curriculum that can be taught we have no idea how) – that puberty is something that can reasonably be avoided, and puberty blockers are the method to do so.

            Our Ministry of Health follows "gender affirming health care" for transgender NZers, including children. (Without getting into details, note that "gender affirming healthcare" is a pre-determined diagnosis and treatment, not equal to quality healthcare).

            https://www.health.govt.nz/your-health/healthy-living/transgender-new-zealanders/transgender-new-zealanders-children-and-young-people

            Puberty blockers

            For young people where these feelings continue into puberty or emerge during puberty, particularly if associated with distress, it is important to see a health professional. Puberty blockers are a medication that can be used to halt the physical changes of an unwanted puberty.

            Blockers are a safe and fully reversible medicine that may be used from early puberty through to later adolescence to help ease distress and allow time to fully explore gender health options.

            Service providers that can help access blockers include:

            • paediatric services
            • youth health services
            • endocrinologists
            • primary health care teams.

            Late to the party, and staying for the hangover. NZ education normalises the idea of delayed puberty, while offering – without reserve – off-label medications that have no robust clinical evidence of benefit.

            In fact, the countries above, that have reviewed evidence have found that the net result is harm.

            If this bothers you, write to both the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Health, asking them what evidential base did they use as reference for these TKI outcomes, and medical response.

            If your concern is for high-quality appropriate care for transgender youth, then you should be bothered. The likelihood of iatrogenic harm from the current approach is high, and the evidence of that occurring is starting to accumulate and be collected.

            • Molly 4.1.1.1.2.1

              It appears that Norway has now reviewed and found evidence of harm, and ordered immediate cessation of use of puberty blockers.

              Unfortunately, the only evidence I have of this is a Tweet but will post an English language link when it becomes available.

    • Sabine 4.2

      But where else would failing male athletes retire to to earn a little extra crust for the old days.

      And who else would tell the little dears just how to shut up, and suck up then some blokes in suits with fancy titles. Privilege, it is +/-8 inches uncut with a suit and he/him and she/her pronouns.

      • weka 4.2.1

        If we just stopped insisting on being female the problems would go away.

        • weka 4.2.1.1

          fucking neoliberals. The hierarchy of oppression sans class analysis is a tool of the patriarchy. And liberals bought into it for the odd seat at the table. But they will never let us have shared power, because then we would dismantle neoliberalism and the whole damned hierarchical structure.

          • Sabine 4.2.1.1.1

            If this is neo liberalism then every party in our government without exception is neo liberal. As they all voted for Self ID in NZ. There are the parties who spearheaded the law, who mocked people in open hearings for not wanting to have Self ID and they should be carrying and in the end will be carrying the responsibility for the misery that will be caused via the many many children de-sexed for gender ideology and conformity, but the opposition parties had no issues going along with it and are thus guilty by association and enabling of harm.

            Sexism on the right : own gestational carriers privately.

            Sexism on the left: own gestational carriers publicly.

            same shit to the gestational carriers. – owned, without agency.

            • weka 4.2.1.1.1.1

              yes, our government is neoliberal.

            • Anker 4.2.1.1.1.2

              Hi Sabine, Slightly off topic but understand you are based in Rotorua, so just wanted to post this article on Tamati Coffeys latest piece of legislation

              "The Rotorua District Councils Representation Arrangement Bill. Do the people of Rotorua know about this?

              https://theplatform.kiwi/opinions/ardern-struggles-to-defend-unequal-suffrage

              • Sabine

                Yes, i know about it, but not thanks to the news or Labour. Thanks to Winston Peters, thanks to the Hologram, thanks to some Nationalistas.

              • Sabine

                Submission period increased thanks to some National MPs that complained about the short submission period.

                https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/politics/public-submissions-on-rotorua-maori-wards-bill-extended-after-concerns-about-rushed-process/SQOH7543B5L2OWK5P42EAXRUNU/

                National's justice spokesman Paul Goldsmith said the initial two-week submission period was "outrageously short".

                The Government was trying to "sneak through" the bill, despite it being a significant change to electoral laws.

                "Bringing through constitutional change in an obscure local bill is not the way to do things."

                He said the effect of moving away from the population-based criteria for Māori wards would effectively change the principle of each vote being equal.

                Although the bill was restricted to the Rotorua district council, it would open the door for other councils to follow suit.

                "So [Labour] are just sneaking it through and it will then be presented as a fait accompli."

                The extension to submissions will also allow more time for the usual Attorney-General report on the bill's implications before MPs have to vote on it again.

        • Sabine 4.2.1.2

          Remove the protected category of sex and you are there. We are then all they/thems and that includes the men.

          Case in point those that want to remove 'sex attraction' i.e. homosexual, heterosexual, bi-sexual cause bigottry to replace it with 'gender attraction' either same or opposite. Unisex people fucking everything and everyone, and thus yhou can't discriminate. Unless of course they need kids, and then they damn well know who the gestational carrier is going to be. The human dairy cow. Money is to be made.

          • weka 4.2.1.2.1

            not to worry, some progressive men think we will be liberated once science figures out how to do uterus implants into men.

            sorry for all the sarcasm, just fucked off I can't write posts about this.

            • Sabine 4.2.1.2.1.1

              First they need to figure out which organs to remove to make space for the expanding uterus unless they carry it in a pouch something like a colonosty bag. Never mind the placenta and stuff.

              But for what its worth, they probably have no issues with a few hundreds / thousands of men dying trying to carry a pregnancy to term or even just carry it for a month or so before their bodies give up.

              Until that day is achieved they now what a gestational carrier is, a women/female by sex and not ideology to exploit by the many for the good of a few.

            • tsmithfield 4.2.1.2.1.2

              Weka, I just wanted to say I have enjoyed the thoughtful and fair contributions you have made to this debate.

              As an old, pale stale male, I haven't felt it is an appropriate topic for me to comment on, as the issues are something I don't have any personal experience with at all. So, I have stayed on the sidelines with this one.

              • weka

                thanks 👍 I think reading and listening is not a bad approach for people that aren't particularly involved. It's a complex set of issues and dynamics.

    • yeanah 4.3

      Still obsessing with terf bullshit? I think you need to get a new hobby before you ruin your life a la Linehan.

      [permanent ban for blatant trolling and misogyny. – weka]

  5. “Luxon said the government has been blaming international factors for adversely affecting inflation but Singapore is at 2 percent, Australia is at 3.5 and Japan is at 1 percent while dealing with the same challenges.”

    https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/political/465554/high-government-spending-fuelling-inflation-rate-luxon

    Some current inflation rates:

    USA 8.5

    UK 7.0

    Euro Area 7.5 (Spain 9.8 Germany 7.3 Holland 9.7)

    Canada 6.7

    NZ 6.9

    Singapore 4.3 (not 2% per Luxon)

    https://tradingeconomics.com/country-list/inflation-rate-?continent=g20

    Luxon talking rubbish/lying again and again and again………..

    • alwyn 5.1

      So, can we say that

      When Luxon selects inflation rates that suit his argument he is "talking rubbish/lying again and again and again……….."

      And to be consistent we should say that when Bearded Git selects inflation rates that suit his argument he is "talking rubbish/lying again and again and again……….."

      • arkie 5.1.1

        You can’t think of an economist that thinks competition lowers prices, so economics is well outside of your area of expertise.

        • alwyn 5.1.1.1

          You are either deliberately misquoting what I said or you simply don't understand it. I suspect the latter.

          What I said is "There is nothing at all in the theory that says that small is always more efficient than large". I have highlighted the critical part of that statement.

          You were claiming that it was always the case. You must try harder.

          • arkie 5.1.1.1.1

            You and your strawmen. You are an bad faith commenter and anyone can read any thread you 'contribute' to and see that amply demonstrated.

            Please stop trying.

          • Incognito 5.1.1.1.2

            Paraphrasing ≠ quoting.

            • alwyn 5.1.1.1.2.1

              Alright. For your benefit I shall reword it.

              His attempt at paraphrasing what I say is a false representation of what was said.

              • McFlock

                In that case, your characterisation of Arkie's comment is equally false.

                Whatever the economies of scale save in "production" duopoly power hands directly over as profits rather than lower prices. Basic economic theory suggests increasing competition will force "producers" to redirect those savings towards consumers, while possibly diminishing those scale-based savings (depending on thresholds for efficiencies in production rather than a straight line relationship between units "produced" and the per-unit cost of that production).

                • alwyn

                  Maybe, maybe not.

                  The basic theory would have a great deal of trouble explaining the fact that a company like Amazon exists, and undercuts every one it competes with.

                  • McFlock

                    Nope. Because basic economic theory isn't just one chart of supply vs demand, or economies of scale, or monopoly vs competition.

                    But keep arguing the supposed advantages of having a duopoly supply the bulk of groceries to a country's population. Really nails your flag to the mast.

                  • Incognito

                    We were discussing competition within NZ and the existing supermarket duopoly, not Amazon. The Publisher of your textbook is rescinding the deal and wants your advance payment back, all three lollies.

                    • alwyn

                      Fail.

                      This started off when arkie proposed " It would be fantastic to imagine supermarket buildings being repurposed, housing multiple individual businesses and stalls" and I suggested that Supermarkets supplied a superior service, at a lower price, than did hordes on little speciality shops.

                      .https://thestandard.org.nz/open-mike-15-04-2022/#comment-1883202

                    • Incognito []

                      So, you were discussing Amazon, but failed to mention this to us?? No wonder you made no sense because arkie was talking about the supermarket duopoly in NZ and started their comment as follows:

                      An interesting article about the government apparently considering splitting the supermarket duopoly:

              • Incognito

                Well, this is what you wrote in your comment here (https://thestandard.org.nz/open-mike-15-04-2022/#comment-1883360):

                First you quoted arkie:

                "Many little businesses have to compete for customers, this leads to lower prices, isn't that basic economics to you?".

                Then you gave this answer:

                No, and I can't think of any Economist I know who would agree with it.

                Looks quite clear to me that you think that competition is not good for lowering consumer price and that economy of scale and less competition thanks to the duopoly is preferable for consumers.

                Let us know when your economic textbook comes out: Economics-101 by a Dummy.

                • alwyn

                  Oh dear. You are a fan of the selective quote are you.

                  If you are going to quote what I say quote it in full. Otherwise I will start assuming that you are a politician.

                  The full context of those comments includes a lot more than you are quoting, but you know that and just pretend it isn't there.

                  I would suggest that you and arkie would both benefit from reading Economics for Dummies. It is not the best of introductory works but it will certainly teach you more about the subject than you know now.

                  • Incognito

                    Arkie and I both have your textbook on pre-order as colouring-in book for the pre-schoolers in our extended families.

                    I was pretending not linking to the comment and arkie also pretended not linking to the same comment. However, none of us is as pretentious as you: less competition is good!

      • Bearded Git 5.1.2

        Alwyn,

        I chose major G20 countries to compare with NZ which seemed reasonable to me as they would tend to be trading in similar markets to NZ. I didn't contradict Luxon's 3.5% figure for Australia-it would be interesting to know why this is so low (it is forecast to rise to 4.5% by 30/6).

        I did find it odd that Luxon got Singapore's inflation rate badly wrong.

    • Poission 5.2

      The main part of the cost increases was Housing costs.

      The main driver for the 6.9 percent annual inflation to the March 2022 quarter was the housing and household utilities group, influenced by rising prices for construction and rentals for housing.

      Prices for the construction of new dwellings increased 18 percent in the March 2022 quarter compared with the March 2021 quarter, the largest increase recorded since the series began in 1985.

      “Construction firms have been experiencing many supply-chain issues, higher labour costs, and also higher demand, which have pushed up the cost of building a new house,” senior prices manager Aaron Beck said.

      https://www.stats.govt.nz/news/annual-inflation-reaches-30-year-high-of-6-9-percent

      Constraining immigration,and enforcing RMA requirements for short term residential accommodation,are quick ,efficient,and cheap ways to reduce housing constraints.

    • Jimmy 5.3

      Finance Minister looking in to claims government spending may have contributed to runaway inflation.

      Image

      • mac1 5.3.1

        This picture just encapsulates the pressures that MPs, and all public figures, are under when not only does the technology exist to excerpt a demeaning still shot from a film, but then allows the ability to distribute the same extremely widely; especially when the original was not produced for this purpose.

        I'm just glad I got out of the public eye before this crap became prevalent.

        It always has been there, though, for political purposes. Who remembers Hitler's 'jig' purportedly captured when attending the 1940 capitulation of France signing?

        https://www.professorbuzzkill.com/hitler-jig-myth/

        • Jimmy 5.3.1.1

          You have to have a sense of humor about these things. Like being hit in the face with a dildo.

          • Drowsy M. Kram 5.3.1.1.1

            Not condoning that thwack, but pity the dildo – oh to be a fly on those eyebrows.

            Judith Collins admits she 'might have' laughed out loud at Steven Joyce's 2016 dildo incident

          • mac1 5.3.1.1.2

            I really appreciate being told I have to have a sense of humour. I've got one, some would say far too often displayed. But I've also got a sense of propriety, of fairness, of appreciation of the travails of public life.

            I don't want my political representatives to be so 'thick-skinned' that they are not sensitive to what we need them to be aware of, lke poverty and injustice; nor so ill-attuned like Boris Johnson, or Chris Luxon.

            At least, I believe that can't be said of Grant Robertson, though some will of course disagree, who is the brunt of this belittling concoction.

            It's a cartoon but without the skill, the wit, the political incision of a good cartoonist.

    • Ross 5.4

      Luxon talking rubbish/lying again and again and again………..

      Yeah I'm sure that will go down a treat with those visiting their local foodbank.

      Meanwhile, this graph clearly shows inflation increased significantly throughout 2021 in New Zealand. That date is important as it's a year that Ukraine wasn't invaded by Russia. Bugger.

      Inflation – Reserve Bank of New Zealand (rbnz.govt.nz)

      • Incognito 5.4.1

        The governor, Adrian Orr, has told an International Monetary Fund seminar that it had been caught on the backfoot, like many other central banks, by supply chain shocks and the Russian invasion of Ukraine, which had exacerbated inflation pressures.

        https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/business/465494/reserve-bank-not-in-a-good-place-admits-governor

        Ouch!

        Leading economist Shamubeel Eaqub told Newshub Late New Zealand has yet to see the impacts of Government spending on inflation.

        "Most of the inflation so far has been on food, fuel and housing, so we haven't seen that impact of a lot of Government spending in the last couple of years because of the pandemic coming through to inflation yet," he said.

        https://www.newshub.co.nz/home/money/2022/04/leading-economist-shamubeel-eaqub-warns-inflation-caused-by-government-spending-will-come-in-year-or-so.html

        Double ouch!

        • Nic the NZer 5.4.1.1

          This narrative about spending and govt spending lead inflation in NZ is based on the idea that NZ wages were raised significantly. Instead we have a cost of living crisis because what actually happened was that many industries have been disrupted and have raised their prices, but this has not been passed on to the median wage. Of course if you take economics seriously you to some extent need the idea of demand side inflation to actually manifest in the wage data. On the other hand if you just use economics to assign blame in your massively simplified narrative that inflation must be the govt fault then all the data lining up is beside the point.

          Cutting government spending or raising interest rates isn't going to change a lot of the drivers of inflation, though it may eventually generate a recession which could certainly impact prices. Its worth highlighting that most NZers have recently received real wage cuts as their wages went up less than the inflation rate in recent history. Seems like self inflicted austerity probably isn't the best policy solution at present, but my following of the last 14 year economic history of Europe suggests its likely to be tried first.

      • Patricia Bremner 5.4.2

        Ross we were invaded by covid… remember that? Wuhan covid 19, followed by Delta, then Omicron.

        All that support by the Government for workers and business and Health,……Health systems vaccines and millions to the food charities……..

        now the pain plus Ukraine/Russia effects.

        Also the cumulative effects of climate change floods and fires during droughts. Much dearer fruits and vegetables, replacing of roads and bridges, facing the rising seas around our coasts, the creep of housing onto food growing areas…..

        All of that. A pandemic world wide has stressed a shaky system.

        So, if the Government said “here is your help, but you have to pay for it.’ How many would have died?

        • Patricia Bremner 5.4.2.1

          Some Business model Charities took money for their workers, but have contributed little to relief for their supposed target "market" Look up the list.!!

          Some play the religion card for tax… An absolute rort!!

          Some tax laws need to be enforced.

    • Patricia Bremner 5.5

      Our son on the Gold Coast tells of properties rising by 25 to 30%, food costs and petrol costs starting to bite. It appears their property cycle is 3to 4 months behind ours. So watch their inflation.

      • alwyn 5.5.1

        What I find very interesting is that the motor spirit price in New Zealand has remained pretty well constant in New Zealand since the cut in tax on 15 March.

        Meanwhile in Australia the price has dropped by about 47 cents/litre in the same time period. That might stop biting your son quite so much.

        Anyone have any idea on why this might have happened? Both countries import most of their fuel so it can't be local production.

        https://www.globalpetrolprices.com/New-Zealand/gasoline_prices/

        https://www.globalpetrolprices.com/Australia/gasoline_prices/

        • Incognito 5.5.1.1

          It is sad sight seeing you drooling over your cherry-picked data.

          This might perk you up: https://www.mbie.govt.nz/building-and-energy/energy-and-natural-resources/energy-statistics-and-modelling/energy-statistics/weekly-fuel-price-monitoring/

          Even you might be able to spot the sudden drop in fuel prices around 15 March 2022.

          • alwyn 5.5.1.1.1

            "Even you might be able …"

            You didn't even get to the end of the first sentence I wrote did you? If you had you might have noticed the last few words "since the cut in tax on 15 March".

            I was talking about why Australia had shown very a marked drop since them but we hadn't.

            • Incognito 5.5.1.1.1.1

              According to your own link, over the period from 10-Jan-2022 to 18-Apr-2022 shown in the graph there was no such drop by about 47 cents/litre in Australia!? It appears you cherry-picked the maximum on 21 March, i.e. apples & oranges.

              The Ozzies got a fuel tax cut of 22 cents/litre on 29 March.

              Any more diversion trolling from you? Try a different country.

              • alwyn

                I hadn't realised that the 22cent cut in the budget had taken effect immediately. That accounts for a decent chunk of the 47 cents in the time period.

                On the other hand can you tell us why Australia, after a 22c cut is now back to about the same price as it was at the start of the year while we, after a 28.5c cut are still about 25c above the price at the beginning of the year?

        • SPC 5.5.1.2

          There is a Marsden Point factor.

          • alwyn 5.5.1.2.1

            I suppose so. It totally closed on 1 April, didn't it. On the other hand I believe Australia is down to just 2 refineries and that about 90% of its oil supply is imported refined product. Could the 2 refineries make that much difference?

            If so I might have to reconsider my views on keeping Marsden Point going.

        • Scud 5.5.1.3

          The fuel price at the pump in rural areas of Darwin NT $1.959 for ULP and filling up the ute tomorrow prior to heading out to my bush block.

          An outstation in WA was charging 2lt bottle of milk at $9.50

    • mary_a 5.6

      Oh come on Bearded Git (5) the man of seven houses was probably being facetious (again) …

  6. joe90 6

    Must be Ramadan.

    /

  7. Stephen D 7

    The usual caveats about institutional bias etc etc. But an interesting read.

    https://samf.substack.com/p/absolute-ends-with-limited-means?token=eyJ1c2VyX2lkIjo0ODA3MDgsIl8iOiI3RjZZOCIsImlhdCI6MTY1MDUwNTIzMCwiZXhwIjoxNjUwNTA4ODMwLCJpc3MiOiJwdWItNjMxNDIyIiwic3ViIjoicG9zdC1yZWFjdGlvbiJ9.t2ifv0YBA5xZiUIUnJXZgzZDLiXfBnNKpnK2b6RodG4

    “It is 50 years since I read Hannah Arendt’s essay on ‘Lying in Politics’. The essay was prompted by the unauthorised release of the Pentagon Papers, a classified documentary history of US policy-making in the Vietnam War. What shocked many at the time was the evidence that while Lyndon Johnson’s administration continued to tell the American people that its strategy was working, despite the accumulating casualties, top officials knew it was failing. Much of the commentary surrounding the release of the papers, including Arendt’s, turned on the role of deception and self-deception.

    One passage in this essay stuck with me and influenced my subsequent efforts to understand how political leaders end up making such poor choices about military power. This is the passage.

    ‘Oddly enough, the only person likely to be an ideal victim of complete manipulation is the President of the United States. Because of the immensity of his job, he must surround himself with advisers, the “National Security Managers” as they have recently been called by Richard J. Barnet, who “exercise their power chiefly by filtering the information that reaches the President and by interpreting the outside world for him.” The President, one is tempted to argue, allegedly the most powerful man of the most powerful country, is the only person in this country whose range of choices can be predetermined.’

    I recalled the passage when considering how Vladimir Putin came to decide on his calamitous war against Ukraine. The key insight was that someone so powerful could also be so badly informed. That was the case with Lyndon Johnson in the mid-1960s. Could it also be the case for Putin in 2022?”

    • Stuart Munro 7.1

      The dreams of Russia are focused far in the past.

      The legacy of ancient Rome has always constituted an important component of the Russian cultural consciousness. The revitalization of classical scholarship in nineteenth-century Russia and new approaches to antiquity prompted many of the Russian Symbolists to seek their inspiration in ancient Rome.

      The Russkiy Mir, like the Pax Romana that inspired it, is not attractive to the peoples bordering that unhappy state as it staggers towards oblivion without Gibbons' culprit playing much of a role.

    • weston 7.2

      VP doesnt come across as a gullible fool to me in fact when you hear him speaking in interviews and giving speeches he seems way more on to it than most of his western counterparts imo . The question could be if all power bases were snake pits whose would be the dirtiest ? Id argue america's by a comfortable margin .

  8. Chris 8

    An important challenge for the left is to expose the emptiness of what Luxon seems committed to spitting out at every opportunity – bullshit like this – and whatever's next, which is likely to be tomorrow, and the next day, and the day after that…

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/128415159/inflation-a-real-worry-and-govt-is-to-blame–nationals-christopher-luxon

    Luxon's no Key, and his bullshit is easier to see, but unfortunately it's still not obvious enough for most people. That's a big problem.

    • SPC 8.1

      Does Boris Johnson know that the UK's 7% inflation is due to the Tory governments over spending?

      Does Christopher Luxon know that cutting government spending and handing out the money via tax cuts does not reduce inflationary demand in the economy?

  9. SPC 9

    Economy for beginners.

    1. Treasury warns pandemic will cause recession

    2. Orr QE's money for government response (good, helps government finance prevention of any recession) and to enable more bank lending on property (bad, gets rid of deposit criteria for buying up existing property rather than targeted funds to new building – and so boom in property values)

    3. Responding to supply shortage inflation, as if it was demand led (whether public or private sector spending) inflation and so resorting to interest rate rises or demand restraint (causing a recession/unemployment) is not smart.

  10. Macro 10

    OMG I've seen it all now – Dancing Kiwifruit! lol

  11. Stuart Munro 11

    With no effectual response to global warming, we're going to see more of this: Thousand tonnes of dead fish poses problem for King Salmon | RNZ News

    Salmon is the rising star of the NZ aquaculture scene – its feed conversion ratio runs between 1 & 1.1 kg of feed per kg of grown fish, and the adult fish retail at $30+ a kilo – yielding a profit margin that would make John Key blush. But the moment your water temperature creeps over 18 degrees, fish live or die on a coin toss.

    So – here is a litmus test of whether the cohort of managers formed in the post-Brierly period can manage for a sustainable future, or whether they will take no effectual action and let their industry die as global warming pushes through the 2 degree line and heads for 4, which will end salmon farming that has made no provision for temperature moderation.

    Throwing a thousand tonnes of dead fish into landfill is pretty lame too. Composting them has been done since the 1950s, and recycling them using Black Soldier Flies is also well established. Unlike other flies, the BSF do not feed as adults, so they are not a plague vector if they are used to process putrescible waste.

    Watch this space as our aquaculture industries decline to develop temperature moderation, and fail to compost or otherwise gainfully repurpose this high fertility resource. And when NZ's productivity continues to languish at 1970 levels, you'll know why.

    • weston 11.1

      How are the salmon farmers supposed to effect 'temperature moderation ' stuart ? I thought they were aiming to shift their operations into more open areas of the ocean in order to do just that or are you implying that some artificial device exists to bring temps down inside the nets ?

      I dont buy farmed salmon i find the industry repugnant .To keep what are normally wild migrating fish in a cage feeding them food they wouldnt ordinarily eat and polluting the area around the ' farm ' in the process is i think anti nature and deserves to fail .I hope it does .
      If i remember correctly king salmon applied a year or so ago to get gov money to develope some kind of composting ability did nothing come of that ?

      • Stuart Munro 11.1.1

        How are the salmon farmers supposed to effect 'temperature moderation

        This is a matter each must determine according to their locale. Trout farmers in Jordan have used evaporative cooling – spray jets rather like those used by NZ dairy irrigators. But their situation is recirculating raceways, not sea cages, which are harder to cool because the water moves through them. It may be that sea cages must be abandoned in most areas, and farming transitioned to onshore tanks which can be kept at the optimal 13 degrees. My concern is that farming should not proceed without adapting, praying for cool seasons that will become increasingly rare, on the basis that sea cages have exceptionally low capital costs. The industry is profitable enough to support a greater level of capital investment.

        A Dunedin company was composting factory fish offal with bark for decades, and very popular their product proved, especially with rose growers. But given that:

        trucks from Havelock and Picton made 160 trips to the Bluegums Landfill in Blenheim, dumping 1269 tonnes of dead fish (RNZ link above)

        It would seem that composting efforts fell a bit short of requirements in this instance. Composting fish typically calls for 4 or 5 parts of cellulose material (wood chip or sawdust or straw) to 1 part of fish – so it isn’t hard to imagine an excess mortality on the farms might meet a shortfall of organic matter – which is one of the advantages of BSF.

  12. Obtrectator 12

    A seriously disconcerting story from the Guardian:

    https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2022/apr/20/dentists-would-not-treat-my-toothache-now-my-health-has-been-wrecked-for-ever

    It's a longish read, so I'll sum it up. The writer developed a severe toothache – intermittent at first, then constant; one tooth to begin with, then several; infection confined to mouth only, then started to wreak havoc through much of her body. Dentists' investigations revealed no evidence of any dental disorder, so insisted that the pain must have other causes, and refused to touch it. The main motive for withholding treatment seems to have been fear of proceedings against them should anything go wrong.

    Could this culture of fear in the medical profession spread to NZ? One would like to think not, but a recent personal straw in the wind suggests we shouldn't get complacent. Obtrectatrix uses a wheelchair and asked a well-known handyman franchise to make a couple of ramps so that she could get out on to the deck in it. They refused point-blank. "That's medical – we're not touching that." A couple of bloody ramps, not a series of brain-surgeries! What had they to worry about, for the love of Pete?

  13. joe90 13

    Marvelous beasties.

  14. joe90 14

    Straight out of Edgar Allan's story.

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