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Open mike 21/10/2021

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, October 21st, 2021 - 77 comments
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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 …

77 comments on “Open mike 21/10/2021 ”

  1. Dennis Frank 1

    The House of Representatives is expected to vote on Thursday to refer Steve Bannon to federal prosecutors for potential criminal charges relating to his defiance of Congress… The House committee investigating the 6 January insurrection has been steadily tightening the screws on Bannon. At Tuesday’s hearing, Liz Cheney, the representative from Wyoming who has been a leading critic of Trump’s role in inciting the 6 January assault in which five people died, directly accused Bannon of planning the attack… Cheney added that Bannon and Trump’s refusal to comply suggested that “President Trump was personally involved in the planning and execution of January 6th”.

    https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2021/oct/20/steve-bannon-contempt-house-of-representatives-prosecutors

    Alternatively, could just be that Steve & Donald are entitled to view themselves as above the law. That stance has been embedded in the collective psyche of rich folk for centuries. So they feel security in their traditionalism, and plausible deniability works. I reckon they enjoy calling Congress's bluff – they're both players adept at gaming the system of democracy.

  2. Dennis Frank 2

    The world’s first robot artist has been detained by security forces while attempting to enter Egypt. Art is bad enough, but the prospect of art performed by a robot understandably triggered acute paranoia.

    But because of “security issues” that may include concerns she is part of a wider espionage plot, both Ai-Da and her sculpture held in Egyptian customs for 10 days… https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/oct/20/egypt-detains-artist-robot-ai-da-before-historic-pyramid-show

    "People fear robots, I understand that. But the whole situation is ironic, because the goal of Ai-Da was to highlight and warn of the abuse of technological development, and she’s being held because she is technology. Ai-Da would appreciate that irony, I think.”

    Exhibitions of irony have been the hallmark of postmodernism since its inception so good to see postmodernism ain't quite dead yet.

  3. Dennis Frank 3

    The focus has had to shift to stopping further transmission rather than investigating where cases came from.

    https://thespinoff.co.nz/society/21-10-2021/siouxsie-wiles-what-the-data-is-telling-us-about-new-zealands-delta-outbreak/

    Right, so the Health Dept has switched from trying to figure out how the virus is spreading to focus on containment. Given up, too hard, not enough staff to do it.

    Or, knows exactly how it has been spreading, and who's doing it, and doesn't want to tell the public.

    One explanation correct, or both? Unless & until we get an official explanation, we can only guess. My guess is that they have identified the spreaders, and have decided to use privacy law to protect the offenders. I presume Labour's Minister for Political Rectitude issued that instruction. Fortunately privacy law prevents public identification of that person. Can't hit an invisible target…

    • SPC 3.1

      It's about priority when there are scarce resources.

    • weka 3.2

      Fuller picture (from your link),

      For most of this outbreak, Ministry of Health has been reporting the number of cases from the last 14 days that have not been linked to known cases. These are sometimes called “mystery cases”. During September these hovered at between five and 15 per day, as case investigations and genomic sequencing was able to link the cases to each other.

      But since early October the number of unlinked cases has been steadily rising and that number is now approaching 200. Because delta moves so much faster and infects so many more people, the outbreak has put huge pressure on our public health units who do the contact tracing and case investigations. The focus has had to shift to stopping further transmission rather than investigating where cases came from. This just makes it all the more important that wherever you live, if you have any symptoms that could be Covid-19, please get tested.

      My emphasis. The government by definition cannot know how the mystery cases got covid. They can focus on the down stream transmission. Afaik they've only stopped contact tracing the mystery cases, the known cases are still being traced back.

      So no, I don't think Labour are hiding anything from us. What would be the purpose?

      Much more likely is it's prioritising resources and using all the modelling tools they have to choose which is the best approach given the situation.

      I know it's challenging, and actually frightening, but we have delta in the community now. We've lost the elimination battle, although I think the government still needs to be critiqued on what it is doing, maybe there is a small chance. It's also frightening both for those in lockdown and those in covid-free areas, what the government will do next. Will it allow covid across all of NZ? What measures should it take to prevent that (high vaccination rate is a high priority, but not wholly sufficient)? Should Auckland be expected to keep carrying the load for the rest of the country? For how long?

      It's a novel virus, delta is a novel strain, we have to figure this out as we go along. Has any other country been in our position before?

    • Pete 3.3

      Maybe how it is being spread can be listed in the paper.

      "Today Mary got it it. She got it from Luong at her work, who got it from Tamati at the Auckland Domain, who got it from Maria at Zebleckis Laundry in Dominion Road, who got it from Gin Zing at Countdown Blenheim, who got it from Bill at church in St Heliers …

      (Surnames withheld on here for privacy reasons but obviously full names would be used in the papers.)

      • Sabine 3.3.1

        Stephen King did that in his book the Stand.

        Half a page of small print of how a virus spreads. Scary as Fudge to be honest. And yes, maybe this should be printed out every once in a while as it seems many don't understand how it does spread.

        If anyone and everyone would treat this virus as if they and everyone had it maybe it would reduce the spread?

      • Adrian 3.3.2

        Fuck off Pete, Covid has not been in Te Waipounamu for almost a year and if it does get here it will come via a bloody anti-vax Jafa.

        • Patricia Bremner 3.3.2.1

          Or someone returning to Christchurch and home isolating/in MIQ and spreading it to their family. It is easily spread. Auckland is doing us all a favour and many are paying a huge mental physical and financial toll. Your year free of covid is due to excellent choices by the government and luck.

        • Sabine 3.3.2.2

          or it will be via a vaxxed jaffa who does not know he has it cause asymptomatic.

          So wear your mask, keep distance, sanitze and get on with it.

    • miravox 3.4

      My guess is that they have identified the spreaders, and have decided to use privacy law to protect the offenders.

      Offenders?

      And the MoH hasn't decided to use privacy laws. It must abide by privacy laws when talking about people's health conditions.

      • Dennis Frank 3.4.1

        I was referring to the govt rules for managing Delta. Those who breach such rules are offensive offenders. Punishment is the natural justice outcome. Politically-correct morons are incapable of grasping the principle of natural justice – and, lest you are inclined to kneejerk into legalistic banality as happened last time I mentioned it, I mean that concept as generally understood (not the lawyer's term of art).

        Whenever any public service manager decides to use privacy law as a fig-leaf to cover his/her moral nudity and protect the wrongdoer from being held accountable by the public, that decision is evidence of moral corruption. Nothing to do with health. devil

        • miravox 3.4.1.1

          Do you have any evidence that all, or even "most" people pass on Covid by deliberately flouting the rules? They're not just people who have gone to the supermarket, filled up the car, or some other banal task after say, visiting a place of interest before it was identified as a place of interest? Because until someone says so, my reckons are that most people would be mortified if they found out they infected other people with covid, rather than deliberately spread it.

          Health privacy laws aren't a fig-leaf ever. They're essential for every person who interacts with health services. Even more-so when there is so much blame attached to an illness like covid. Do you actually think people with symptoms would come forward for testing in the numbers they do if they knew they were going to be named and shamed just because they have a disease?

          • Dennis Frank 3.4.1.1.1

            I have several times pointed out that the govt keeps failing to provide the evidence. Did you not see those messages?? We can't comment on the evidence until they do so. Withholding that evidence keeps everyone in the dark.

            Any suitable contender for naming and shaming is one who broke the rules, as I pointed out. Why not read what I actually wrote instead of hallucinating a fantasy version?

            • McFlock 3.4.1.1.1.1

              This is what you wrote:

              Right, so the Health Dept has switched from trying to figure out how the virus is spreading to focus on containment. Given up, too hard, not enough staff to do it.

              Or, knows exactly how it has been spreading, and who's doing it, and doesn't want to tell the public.

              One explanation correct, or both? Unless & until we get an official explanation, we can only guess. My guess is that they have identified the spreaders, and have decided to use privacy law to protect the offenders. I presume Labour's Minister for Political Rectitude issued that instruction. Fortunately privacy law prevents public identification of that person. Can't hit an invisible target…

              Your main assumption is that one needs to know every single link in the chain of transmission in order to effectively cut the rate of transmission. This is incorrect. Firstly, the presence of unknown links is by definition the presence of less obvious and less frequent transmission events. Why hunt down the more difficult fruit when we are having difficulty cutting the links of higher spread likelihood, and need to stop known cases spreading it further?

              But now you've gone from that to suggesting they know all the transmission events (lol) and are hiding that information using the privacy act.

              The privacy act isn't an excuse to lie. If they have identified the links to all cases, it would be recorded that there are no unlinked cases. It's pretty standard.

              • Dennis Frank

                Your main assumption

                Nope. I didn't assume that.

                But now you've gone from that to suggesting they know all the transmission events (lol) and are hiding that information using the privacy act.

                Nope. Didn't suggest that.

                If they have identified the links to all cases, it would be recorded that there are no unlinked cases.

                I didn't mention that hypothetical either!

                Must be a good day for red herrings…

                • McFlock

                  1: Nope. I didn't assume that.

                  and yet:

                  the Health Dept has switched from trying to figure out how the virus is spreading to focus on containment. Given up, too hard, not enough staff to do it.

                  2: Didn't suggest that.

                  yet:

                  My guess is that they have identified the spreaders, and have decided to use privacy law to protect the offenders.

                  3: I didn't mention that hypothetical either!

                  So they had identified the spreaders and were using privacy law to protect the "offenders", yet they did that without linking the cases that were spread?

                  Nice trick, that.

            • miravox 3.4.1.1.1.2

              I have several times pointed out that the govt keeps failing to provide the evidence.

              I did note that. I thought maybe were hinting at secret evidence that allowed you to label everyone who has tested positive for covid an "offender",

        • Patricia Bremner 3.4.1.2

          Frank, Are you trying to undermine the current efforts? Some of your reckons are rather dubious.
          “using the privacy law as a fig leaf” Get real mate!!

          • Dennis Frank 3.4.1.2.1

            I've been pointing out how the govt are undermining their own efforts. Yesterday I reiterated my support for their overall effort, while criticising this one particular defect. Perhaps you weren't paying attention!

            • McFlock 3.4.1.2.1.1

              Perhaps your support is less earnestly expressed than your inventive and diligent exploration of diverse avenues of criticism.

              • Patricia Bremner

                devil That's the one McFlock. Thanks.

                Nothing to do with my attention span after all!! Just how you couch your reckons Frank!!

                • Dennis Frank

                  Well if you really didn't get my point, Bremner, ought I try again? Or are you in denial? It's not all that obscure.

                  1. Rule-breakers ought to be held accountable. That's due to the public suffering the consequences of their misbehaviour.

                  2. You could take them to court and impose a fine, but if they're poor that penalises their kids, eh? So naming and shaming is a better option.

                  3. The govt is not naming and shaming them. Likely reason: privacy law. A feeble excuse because it only applies to health issues – not criminal behaviour.

                  4. Lack of punishment incentivises others to copy the rule-breaking, thus accelerating the pandemic. So the govt is actively undermining its own containment strategy.

                  Do you get it yet??

                  • McFlock

                    2. You could take them to court and impose a fine, but if they're poor that penalises their kids, eh? So naming and shaming is a better option.

                    because "public shaming" doesn't impact their kids?

                    3. The govt is not naming and shaming them. Likely reason: privacy law. A feeble excuse because it only applies to health issues – not criminal behaviour.

                    "Likely reason" or "straw man"? Also, the privacy act is not restricted to the health sector, so the claimed feebleness of your imagined excuse is based upon an error in law.

                    4. Lack of punishment incentivises others to copy the rule-breaking, thus accelerating the pandemic. So the govt is actively undermining its own containment strategy.

                    Except court is still a punishment, see your own point 2. So the government isn't undermining a damned thing.

                    You are.

  4. Policy Parrot 4

    While the government is proceeding well at attacking the housing crisis from the supply end, now is also the time to consider tackling the demand side.

    Now traditionally, a lot of investors and elderly people keen on low risk investments would put their a significant portion of money into term deposits and government bonds, reassured in the knowledge that these would prove to be reliable and stable. The problem was that the commerical interest rate was so low, that it did not generate a satisfactory return.

    So, perhaps the government could offer a 3 percentage point boost to all term investment/long-term saver accounts as an incentive to keep investment in the banking/productive sector. This money would be calculated and paid at the end of tax year along with any refunds. But, giving money to capitalists, you say? Hold on a moment.

    The government pays an increasingly large amount of money out in accommodation supplements and in first home owner grants. All because first home owners, and single home owners, are being challenged at the market by investors seeking a better return, which is causing a dangerous abberation in our housing market.

    What if much of the investor money moved back to the banking sector, and away from the housing market where it is currently doing so much damage? Of course there would need to be some limits. perhaps, no additional interest on deposits/investments above $1m.

    Food for thought?

    • RosieLee 4.1

      Proceeding well at attacking the housing crisis from the supply end?

      Would you like to provide supporting facts and figures?

      • alwyn 4.1.1

        Kiwibuild is up to about 1200 units I believe.

        That must be making an enormous dent in the demand surely? Not quite the 30,000 or so that was originally promised by this time but not really that bad at all.

    • garibaldi 4.2

      No ,it is not food for thought. If you want to learn about the Banks/Bankers just read any of Countryboy's contributions to TDB (the daily blog). He doesn't hold anything back!

    • SPC 4.3

      Inflation is at 5% – as the OCR goes up (soon to 1%, then to 2% next year, then to 3% in 2023 and so on) so will bank deposit rates (and mortgage costs).

      Those with spare cash/nest eggs at the moment have it in power companies for the dividend returns (which might move back to cash once interest rates rise).

      Those soon to cash up their Kiwi Saver account, or sell their rental who want risk free rate of return via bank deposits (not dodgy finance companies) will just have to be patient. There is the option of gold coins and property trusts and blue chip stocks – or just have it in a managed fund and sell down the level bit by bit.

      PS Cash parked in banks sits there for developers to borrow for their binge on 3 house section build ups.

      • Tricledrown 4.3.1

        SPC nothing wrong with 3 houses being built where 1 existed or only 1 could be built.

        That's good the problem is speculation on existing properties.

        • SPC 4.3.1.1

          Preferable that there is an increase in supply. But speculation can also occur with the purchase of the three properties as rentals – there is still no guarantee of a rise in home ownership as an outcome.

          • RosieLee 4.3.1.1.1

            Or affordable rents, allowing beneficiaries to live with a bit of dignity and working people to save for their own home. It's all still in the hands of the banksters, speculators, "investors". Nothing will change – who do they think they're kidding?

    • Ad 4.4

      The only fund that gets close to competing against investing in houses is Kiwisaver on 100% Growth.

      If the state enabled Kiwisaver providers to enable savers to input into funds with a 5 year maturity and a 10 year maturity, as well as the Year 65 maturity, they would go head to head against the 5-year and 10-year Bright Line tests.

      That's a practical extension of investment funds that are already in operation.

      If they really wanted to push the boat out, NZSuperFund could become a Kiwisaver provider as well. That would be a way to help recycle local savings back into the locality.

      • Patricia Bremner 4.4.1

        Ad Yes!! Now there is one stone for two birds!! Could also add 1 or 2% to NZ bank deposits for 2/ 5/ 10 years.

    • Sabine 4.5

      NZ Super Fund and Classic Group to deliver thousands of new homes through $300m partnership – NZ Herald

      A Tauranga-based national housing company, Classic Group, and the New Zealand Super Fund have established a $300 million partnership that will help build thousands of new homes.

      The Kaha Ake [Stronger Together] partnership, which NZ Super holds an 80 per cent share in, will focus strongly on meeting the chronic demand for quality, affordable housing.

      there, Superfund NZ is going to build houses now.

      • Ad 4.5.1

        It was great to see National and Labour uniting on the density policy this week, but it wouldn't have killed them to use the NZSuperFund housing partnership to illustrate the state partnering with private capital which extends beyond Kainga Ora and HLC.

  5. francesca 5

    Transcripts for those preferring the written word.

    The Nolan investigation on Stonewalls capture of the BBC

    https://fairplayforwomen.com/nolan-investigates-stonewall-1/

  6. weka 6

    I don't have time to do a post on this, but if anyone wants to follow from the start, the Northern Ireland police have just told a lesbian that she has to come down the to station for a voluntary interview over some tweets (@femmeslove is gender critical). If she doesn't she will be arrested and interviewed under caution.

    She hasn't been told which tweets are at issue. She has been told who made the complaint – David Paisley (yep, that David Paisely.)

    She is the third woman to be threatened with arrest in this way. Men have also been through various similar processes. These include police recording hate incidents against people's names without actually charging them, on the basis of complaints.

    I've been following @femmeslove on twitter for ages, and she's a joy to read, a strong woman who speaks her mind, but I would never have picked her as someone with offensive tweets.

    Short interview here with her today in that video, starts about 5mins in?

  7. Anker 7

    Thanks for posting Weka.

    • francesca 7.1

      It’s got down to if someone tweets something that offends someone else, and makes a complaint, even if no crime has occurred, the UK police will come to have a little cautionary talk.The tweet and your name will be recorded in a register of hate speech.Their guidelines come from Stonewall, which has manoeuvred itself as a very handy way for govt institutions to outsource their LBGTQIA policies
      As some other person responded
      !984 is a dystopian novel, not a manual.

      • Sabine 7.1.1

        When they speak of crimes against Transpeople being up the waazoo, that is what htey are speaking of. Never mind the bodies of actual dead women strewn across the UKs landscape.

        • Anker 7.1.1.1

          SUFW have been labelled a hate group, although a High Court Judge in Palmerston North, stated this was not the case. Yet people continue to refer to it as such. I anticipate that when the hate laws come in, there will be all sorts of attempts to accuse Gender Critical Feminists of hate speech. And there will be cries and howls if the Palmerston North verdict has set a president

  8. bwaghorn 8

    UK trade deal, most tariffs gone, get in there labour!!

  9. Fireblade 9

    102 new cases in NZ today.

    GET VACCINATED.

  10. francesca 10

    Even Margaret Atwood has fallen from grace. The letter she co signed with many other writers included these statements

    “To that end, we say: nonbinary people are nonbinary, trans women are women, trans men are men, trans rights are human rights. Your pronouns matter. You matter. You are loved.”

    But it has not been enough to save her from being blasted as a transphobe

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-10110001/Handmaids-Tale-author-Margaret-Atwood-branded-transphobic-row-gender-neutral-language.html

    By the way, consider this comment

    'We're just also recognizing that, when discussing repro rights, biology, and many other things, saying 'women' is often inaccurate or outright exclusionary.'

    We don't have consensus any more as to the meaning of the word woman

    I'm still going by the dictionary definition of adult human female. Particularly when discussing repro rights,biology, etc I would stick with the word woman .It's getting too bizarre.If we say transmen are real men, and transwomen are true women, is it time to ditch the trans part.

    So then we get

    Transwomen can ejaculate , therefore women can ejaculate, transmen can menstruate, therefore men can menstruate.We can talk about pregnant men and women.What a party we could have

    I can go with the notion that transwomen are women in the sense that they culturally conform to the stereotypes of womanhood, and feel comfortable in that role (Good luck to them, I don't), but nobody would surely claim an act of will can bring on periods and a heightened risk of cervical cancer.

    Transwomen are not women in the biological sense.That should not be controversial.

    • Sabine 10.1

      Cancelling women into something no one can define but anyone can be? Oh, noes, they would never………, surely.

      s/

  11. Anker 11
    • Yes unless you adopt all aspects of gender ideology and their “new” language, you are transphobic.
    • people are entitled to identify how they like, but it doesn’t trump biological reality, that there are only two sexes and that is immutable and in many instances sex matters.

    but Margaret Atwood would have to spout the ideological line to avoid being called transphobic. I hope given she is an elderly lady she doesn’t get the death and rape threats jk Rowling got and continues to get

  12. Jimmy 12

    102 new cases of Covid today. Numbers expected to double in 10-12 days.

    "Only 1.7 per cent of people hospitalised in the delta outbreak have been vaccinated"

    Covid 19 Delta outbreak: 102 cases – a new daily record, hospital numbers hit high – NZ Herald

    Time to get off your a** and get vaccinated! No more excuses.

  13. Patricia Bremner 13

    Awaiting tomorrows announcement.

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