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Open mike 21/12/2009 to 22/12/2009

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, December 22nd, 2009 - 61 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

mike

Topics of interest, announcements, general discussion. The usual rules apply (see the link to Policy in the banner).

Step right up to the mike..

61 comments on “Open mike 21/12/2009 to 22/12/2009 ”

  1. lprent 1

    There is a problem with the cron jobs for scheduled posts on wordpress at present after the upgrade to 2.9 (not something I test for when looking at new versions *sigh*).

    I will be your cron job for today

  2. Andrei 2

    Lynn quite often the capta doesn’t appear or it shows up as ***invalid***.. It was like that all yesterday for me and this AM as well

    Obviously it is fine now it is “completely” not that that is relevant

    [lprent: Damn – another site issue. Oh well I’m on holiday so I have time to deal with it. Last time it was a buildup of the generated graphics in the tmp directory.

    There is a work-around. Login and you’ll find that you don’t have a captcha. The only restrictions are that you have to get past the captcha on the registration and have a valid e-mail address. ]

    • felix 2.1

      The other workaround is to right click where the image should be (whether you can see this or not depends on your browser) and open the image itself, perhaps in a new tab.

      Has worked for me when I’ve had this problem in the past anyway.

    • lprent 2.2

      Any particular browser and operating system? I’ve tried 5 so far in windows and linux.

      The tmp directory it uses doesn’t seem to have much in there.

      Edit: Umm while I’m out of login, I should have a look at fixing the layout of the re-edit as well.

  3. prism 3

    Laura Dekker was born at sea and presumably has been at sea ever since. Fourteen years and being encouraged by her father to sail round the world? She has only just started on her life and is being encouraged to put herself at such risk. And if she needs rescue and receives it who pays?It would be unreasonable to make a whimsical decision to be at one with the sea, a water nomad, a free being and then want someone else to pay for it.
    One of the saddest stories is the one of the Brit who was in a lone-hand race and was so far out of it he started fibbing about his location and got so far from the truth as well as his goal port and the other competitors that I think he drowned himself.
    These people who live on boats sailing around all the time can’t have much connection with any country and any giving relationship with a community or their own country. Their children are separated from real-life relationships with other children outside their tight little closed community. Sort of like a sea-cult.

  4. prism 4

    Unbelievable. There has been a massive breakdown in the Channel tunnel and will probably be no Eurostar trains going through before Christmas with thousands of people probably unable to make alternative travel bookings in France and Britain. Eurostar have a 50 year contract to run the thing. Those pressing for public-private or completely private operations need to bear this type of thing in mind when thinking about provision of quality services needed by the general public.
    Trains broke down in the Chunnel one after another apparently. There was a reference to change from cold air outside the tunnel to warm air inside – as if that might have been a reason for the breakdowns. 2,000 got stuck in the Chunnel overnight. There was little communication with passengers. It must have been hell for the workers too trying to deal with an obviously inadequate emergency plan. Passengers in one carriage had to wait half an hour to get half a litre of water to share between a large number. No mention has been made of the toilet facilities. The airconditioning broke down. The passengers opened the emergency doors manually and walked along lines to get to another train.
    The pride of modern technology and modern management techniques – most useful would have been golf carts for ferrying passengers with perhaps some horses pulling carts that could run along the rail lines.

    • BLiP 4.1

      heh! Reminds me of a few years ago when the private company running BritRail, can’t remember the name, had a series of massive failures due to a build up of leaves on he tracks. At the time, the company said the failures occurred because Autumn took them by surprise!!

    • prism 4.2

      Interesting point on TV report today about the Chunnel problem and Heathrow down too. There is no bus service to ferry these hapless people (and their children) to where they are supposed to go for getting transport.
      Where is the co-ordination? Whose responsibility? Where private companies operate they are likely to go into a silo mode. It’s not their responsibility to be concerned about ease of transport and providing needed services for the public. If there is government oversight over transport it knits the systems together.
      The TV showed a long line of resigned people trudging along the street dragging their luggage and pushing their children’s pushchairs. They have been waiting for four days to get away. It’s an indictment on both private and public lack of planning for emergencies.

  5. ianmac from Abudhabi 5

    Prism: The immortal lines “Have a madiera m’dear!” hold true forever. Blocked lines? New girlfriend?

    • prism 5.1

      Interesting but enigmatic comments. I remember the madeira but don’t remember the others PB and Ian. Must listen to the tape or I think its vinyl, again. Haven’t played LPs for a long time. Think everything still works.

  6. prism 6

    Just got 63 cents interest on my bank account and 12 cents taxation off it. I am sure that one of our problems with lack of savings is the way that fees and taxes eat into them. Once I had $100 in a credit union. I didn’t do anything it just sat there. They charged $25 yearly to handle a/c. Why not spend it when it would have disappeared in 4 years and earned $6 a year.
    Inflation is always diminishing savings even though it is lower than it used to be but then the interest paid is lower as well. Its time the government bit the bullet and cut the taxation on ordinary savings way back, and stopped taking it out in cents, pay nothing till you earn $100 I say. Taxmen leave my cents alone!

  7. Bomber 7

    Appointing a homophobic bigot like Brian Neeson to the Human Rights Tribunal is like appointing Paul Henry to the Broadcasting Standards Authority! John Key may as well appoint hood wearing, cross burning Klansmen to the Human Rights Review Tribunal if Neeson is the new benchmark. This hateful bigot who has a well tracked history of attempting to DENY human rights is now on the fucking tribunal reviewing human rights? Tell me this is some sort of sick, sick Joke. The Human Rights Review Tribunal has no moral authority whatsoever with a bigot like Neeson on it.

    For the love of Christ, Neeson has intellectually argued AGAINST giving certain groups human rights, he is a human rights vandal NOT a human rights defender!

    Disgusting decision National, disgusting decision.

    • Gosman 7.1

      Why are you just regurgitating the stuff you posted on your blog here Mr Bradbury? Is that because you’re worried noone will bother reading it there? I suppose you have a point then.

      So is the position of the liberal left now that the only people who get to be appointed to various Government agencies have to be liberal lefties?

      If so then I look forward to the Stalinist purges of the Public sector when next Labour gets back into power. I’ll be an old man mind you. 😉

    • Just watch the religious nuts take over Bomber! .I thought this sort of welfare went out with the first Labour Government here and the UK. The people that will suffer most under this type of sytem will be the Solo mums and gay people .Who according
      to these religious bigots will look down their beaks and lecture on morals ? Then decide whether they “deserve” payment .
      The whole thing makes me sick . Robert Tressell wrote all about it in the Ragged Trousered Philanthropist way back in the 1930s . English should be sent a copy.

      • Gosman 7.2.1

        We are discussing a single appointment to a Government agency with limited powers not a complete re-prioritisation of social welfare here.

        The agency in question would have, I suspect, a number of people with far more liberal viewpoints than Mr Neeson.

        It isn’t as if Mr neeson can use his new posituion to role back the entire pro-gay legislation that has been enacted since the mid 1980’s is it?

  8. Tim Ellis 8

    Don’t bigots have human rights as well?

    I don’t have any time for Mr Neeson, but it seems he has a perspective that is shared by many. I don’t see why his views should excuse him from serving on the tribunal.

  9. Bill 9

    Chavez was accused in some media of being responsible for torpedoing Copenhagen ( along with China, Bolivia and Brazil et al) and of referring to Obama as the great satan and so on

    Here’s his speech in full.

    http://www.zcommunications.org/znet/viewArticle/23421

    • Quoth the Raven 9.1

      It seems they all blame each other. Ed Miliband blames Venezuela in part – he said it himself on BBC, but it only mentions his aides in this article:

      Only China is mentioned specifically in Miliband’s article but aides tonight made it clear that he included Sudan, Venezuela, Bolivia, Nicaragua and Cuba, which also tried to resist a deal being signed.

      And Chavez should have little to say considering fully half his government’s revenue comes from oil and gas.

      • Bill 9.1.1

        And Chavez should have little to say considering fully half his government’s revenue comes from oil.

        Probably more, but no more than any other government’s revenue. Everything runs on oil QtR and so almost all revenue depends on it.

        Chavez has as much right to say whatever as any other head of state. Fact is, his speech was more realistic and truthful.

        BTW Brown finger pointed Chavez, not Milliband.

        • Quoth the Raven 9.1.1.1

          Probably more, but no more than any other government’s revenue. Everything runs on oil QtR and so almost all revenue depends on it.

          I’m talking direct revenue and it’s a huge amount more than other governments. It’s comparable to middle eastern oil nations. See Energy policy of Venezuela

          BTW Brown finger pointed Chavez, not Milliband.

          No it was Miliband I saw him on television.

  10. Mac1 10

    @Tim Ellis.
    Yes, bigots have human rights as well, but I wonder if people who argue that consider the flip side of that coin- responsibilities. I know the Right is very big on personal responsibiity. A bigot has the responsibility to change his/her thinking if they understand that they are wrong. But isn’t that the definition of a bigot- one who knows she/he is wrong but won’t change? The COD says that a bigot is one who “irrespective of reason attaches disproportionate weight to a creed or view.”

    Too many people nowadays are proffering the line that they are entitled to have their opinions even if they are wrong. Since a lot of people hold opinions based on emotion rather than logic or experience, it has similar characteristics to new age philosophy.

    I was taught that wrong opinions get changed to suit the new facts or experience.

    I have noticed, Tim, that you very rarely respond to a contrary opinion with a further exchange of ideas. The idea of debate is to enable change where error can be proven.

    Yes, bigots can have human rights but their responsibility is also to be human- admit error and change when shown to be wrong.

    To do otherwise is cant, fixed ideological positions, bigotry, personal regression, backwardness. In my world, bigotry can’t be excused. A confirmed bigot will not make good decisions for human rights. A person who admits to having been a bigot and has changed would be eminently suitable, since they would at least understand something of the well-springs and continuance systems involved in being a bigot.

    The scene in the film “Amazing Grace” where the writer of the hymn having been a murdering slaver repents and makes atonement was very powerful. “Was blind, but now I see.”

    To have a bigot pronounce on Human Rights is, in a metaphor for this time of year, allowing Christmas dinner cooks to determine the right to life of turkeys.

    Spam word “considerable”- how apposite.

    • Tim Ellis 10.1

      A bigot has the responsibility to change his/her thinking

      Really? Don’t people have the human right to think what they like?

      Human rights enforcement should govern behaviour, not thought. When you start telling people what they should and shouldn’t believe, their right to free thought and free speech has gone out the window. You start discriminating against people for holding conservative points of view.

      A legitimate question should be asked of Mr Neeson, if an employee were dismissed because of sexual orientation, would he uphold human rights legislation making such actions illegal, or would he not?

      As long as Mr Neeson can uphold the law and defend the human rights of people who are discriminated against, I don’t think it matters at all what his view on homosexuality or anything else is.

      • Pascal's bookie 10.1.1

        Do you think whether or not people who have been discriminated against may feel a bit apprehensive about dealing with Neeson has any bearing, or should they just form a group?

        • Tim Ellis 10.1.1.1

          No more so than an average bloke might feel apprehensive about a hearing presided over by a radical feminist PB.

          • Pascal's bookie 10.1.1.1.1

            So does it or doesn’t it?

            Was there a point in there hiding behind your strange belief that the average bloke is intimidated by feminism?

            What does a radical feminist think any way Timmsy? Got an example of what you have in mind, and the position they’ve been appointed to that you think I’d approve of?

            I’m betting you’ve got nothing.

            • Tim Ellis 10.1.1.1.1.1

              No, PB, I can’t point to a single case. But it is not me who is making the case that somebody should be excluded from membership of the HRRT just because of their personal beliefs.

              PB, can you point to a single case where the HRRT has made a ruling on discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation, where had Mr Neeson been a member of the tribunal, the outcome would have been different?

              • Pascal's bookie

                So you brought up the radical feminism why exactly?

                As to your latest question, which again adds nothing, according to the mans own stated thoughts on the tribunal, I know that if Neeson had his wish all such cases would be rejected.

                So again,

                Do you think that whether or not people who have been discriminated against may feel a bit apprehensive about dealing with Neeson, should have any bearing on whether or not he is suitable?

                The answer is fairly obvious Tim, if you think the trib’s role is important.

              • Tim Ellis

                I brought it up because it is the very opposite of Mr Neeson’s views. If some parties might feel intimidated by Mr Neeson, then equally other parties might feel intimidated by a radical feminist.

                So you can’t name a single case where a judgement on discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation would have been different if Mr Neeson had been a member of the tribunal. Thought so.

                Have a look at the HRRT’s cases PB. There’s a full list of all the cases going back to 2002 before the tribunal. Name a single one where Mr Neeson’s supposed prejudice would have changed a decision.

              • Pascal's bookie

                I brought it up because it is the very opposite of Mr Neeson’s views.

                No it isn’t. Unless there is some Tribunal for Keeping the Bitches in their Place that I am unawre of.

                Perhaps you can explain why you think radical feminists, whatever they are, would be opposed to the HRRT ? Seeing it’s your example, and it makes no sense, I think you should explain.

                Name a single one where Mr Neeson’s supposed prejudice would have changed a decision.

                Any one of those cases could have been different Tim. The complainant might not have come forward. And asking me to provide an appropriate counterfactual, is exactly the type of thing we were discussing the other day, re good faith debating and your failure to be any good at it.

                So again, and I’ve responded to everything you’ve put me Tim, so I think you could at least try to stay on the topic, or answer the question you’ve so far ignored.

                Do you think that whether or not people who have been discriminated against may feel a bit apprehensive about dealing with Neeson, should have any bearing on whether or not he is suitable?

                The answer is fairly obvious Tim, if you think the trib’s role is important.

              • Tim Ellis

                Conceivably, PB, a feminist radical could reach a different conclusion that a complainant was dismissed due to discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation than Mr Neeson.

                But since you can’t point to a single case where Mr Neeson’s judgement in such a matter might have been persuasive, your argument falls flat PB.

                Any one of which cases could have been different? Point to one. Show me where Mr Neeson’s views on a person’s sexual orientation could have swayed the outcome.

              • Pascal's bookie

                Got logic Tim?

                Neeson opposes some cases even being heard, it’s not about legitimate interpretation. he thinks people should be allowed to discriminate.

                So what’s a radical feminist, and how does it matter?

                and do you think that whether or not people who have been discriminated against may feel a bit apprehensive about dealing with Neeson, should have any bearing on whether or not he is suitable?

      • Mac1 10.1.2

        With rights come responsibilities. If I know that I am wrong, and I have changed my mind over significant issues, then my humanity and my desire for intellectual honesty say that I have to revise my point of view. Part of my humanity is my ability to reason and also part of my humanity is to live as good a life as I can, as a social being and as an individual.

        If a person has a conservative view, arrived at by experience and knowledge, than that’s fine. I would hope that further knowledge and experience would at least refine such views.

        But you instanced bigots- and bigots know they are wrong but through laziness, or self-interest, or plain meanness continue to be bigotted.

        I think there might be a gap between Mr Neeson asked your question and supporting the law, actively promoting the law or even advancing the law towards greater human rights for people discriminated against by sexual discrimination.

        It is asking for great things to expect that a self-confessed homophobe would equitably uphold gay rights, as it is for a militarist to respect pacifist beliefs or a religious fundamentalist of what ever persuasion to uphold other opinion.

        it is difficult to act, (your reference to behaviour), against your own beliefs.
        Unless of course tolerance is one of the fundamentals of our own beliefs, and therefore affects behaviour. I am not sure that a bigot has tolerance in abundance. Not if he chooses to be a bigot, “irrespective of reason”, as the COD states.

        I immediately think of the old adage about dying for your right to hold your opinion, but would Mr Neeson go start a war to continue the analogy? You brought in Mr Neeson, by the way, but I had wanted to engage on more general terms as to whether a bigot has rights and also responsibilities to consider.

        If you talk about rights and disregard responsibilities, then that is soft argument. The spam word is “granting” which is what we do with rights and what we do when we are tolerant. Even of other people’s rights to be wrong. One can be wrong, but not be bigotted. There is an important distinction.

        You say that my way of thinking will lead to criticising thought rather than behaviour. They are linked, but I never said that people should be made to believe one way or the other. Never said that. What I believe is that bigotry is a shameful place to be intellectually, humanly and socially and that criticism should be made of bigotted practice, that bigots should be encouraged towards honesty and tolerance.

        We have free speech and thought. So we should have. With free speech and thought is a responsibility to be moderate, tolerant, and exercising that most precious and free gift of reason. Free speech and thought is not an excuse for laziness, protection of self-interest and meanness. It is a right exercised with responsibility.

        Having said all that, I acknowledge too that I am human and imperfect, still needing to exercise more tolerance and work on prejudice. That is a life’s work.

  11. Pascal's bookie 11

    Everyone knows ol’ gwb sucked pretty hard at the presidenting gig, but geez wayne:

    http://politics.theatlantic.com/2009/09/closing_the_book_on_the_bush_legacy.php

    So the summary page on the economic experience of average Americans under the past two presidents would look like this:
    Under Clinton, the median income increased 14 per cent. Under Bush it declined 4.2 per cent.

    Under Clinton the total number of Americans in poverty declined 16.9 per cent; under Bush it increased 26.1 per cent.

    Under Clinton the number of children in poverty declined 24.2 per cent; under Bush it increased by 21.4 per cent.

    Under Clinton, the number of Americans without health insurance, remained essentially even (down six-tenths of one per cent); under Bush it increased by 20.6 per cent.
    Adding Ronald Reagan’s record to the comparison fills in the picture from another angle.

    Under Reagan, the median income grew, in contrast to both Bush the younger and Bush the elder. (The median income declined 3.2 per cent during the elder Bush’s single term.) When Reagan was done, the median income stood at $47, 614 (again in constant 2008 dollars), 8.1 per cent higher than when Jimmy Carter left office in 1980.

    But despite that income growth, both overall and childhood poverty were higher when Reagan rode off into the sunset than when he arrived. The number of poor Americans increased from 29.3 million in 1980 to 31.7 million in 1988, an increase of 8.4 per cent. The number of children in poverty trended up from 11.5 million when Carter left to 12.5 million when Reagan stepped down, a comparable increase of 7.9 per cent. The total share of Americans in poverty didn’t change over Reagan’s eight years (at 13 per cent), but the share of children in poverty actually increased (from 18.3 to 19.5 per cent) despite the median income gains.
    The past rarely settles debates about the future.

    The fact that the economy performed significantly better for average families under Clinton than under the elder or younger Bush or Ronald Reagan doesn’t conclusively answer how the country should proceed now. Obama isn’t replicating the Clinton economic strategy (which increased federal spending in areas like education and research much more modestly, and placed greater emphasis on deficit reduction-to the point of increasing taxes in his first term). Nor has anyone suggested that it would make sense to reprise that approach in today’s conditions. But at the least, the wretched two-term record compiled by the younger Bush on income, poverty and access to health care should compel Republicans to answer a straightforward question: if tax cuts are truly the best means to stimulate broadly shared prosperity, why did the Bush years yield such disastrous results for American families on these core measures of economic well being?

    And no, the big worldwide crash isn’t what made his record look bad. It already looked bad in 07.

  12. Tim Ellis: ‘A legitimate question should be asked of Mr Neeson, if an employee were dismissed because of sexual orientation, would he uphold human rights legislation making such actions illegal, or would he not?’

    And the answer is not, Tim. Neeson is happy to sack workers if they are openly gay.

    ‘But at a time when someone behaves in an extreme way it is up to me to have the right to tell that person that that is not the way to behave, and it does not matter whether he or she is homosexual or anything else. I think that everybody would agree with that. When it comes to that particular point an employer should have the right to be able to turn around and say to someone: “Enough is enough; that’s not the way that you are going to behave in my premises or in my employ, whoever you are.”’

    That’s him speaking on the Human Rights Bill when it was introduced back in ’93. There is, er, bugger all chance his bigotry has diminished over the years. In fact, norightturn has more of this braindead and heartless twat here: http://norightturn.blogspot.com/2009/12/brian-neesons-greatest-hits.html

    Now, Tim, I know you’re a decent, hail fellow well met sort of guy. Are you still going to back his appointment or are you going to recognise he is a bigot and completely unsuitable to be helping the commision perform its role in our open, liberal society?

    • Tim Ellis 12.1

      TVOR, I invite you to point out which of the HRRT’s rulings on discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation might have been different if Mr Neeson had been a member of the tribunal.

      • BLiP 12.1.1

        And, given Neeson’s record of homophobia, I invite you to point out why a gay person should feel more comfortable approaching the HRRT now that Neeson is to sit in judgement.

        • Pascal's bookie 12.1.1.1

          What quacks me up is how utterly unprincipled these clowns are.

          If they believe in the role of the trib, they’d be more careful about who the posted to it.

          It’s a transparent wingnut welfare scheme, paying back various people the party has shat on.

          If the don’t give a shit about the trib, or think it should be undermined by appointing people to it that oppose it’s legislatively designed role, then the principled thing to do is change the legislation.

          If they do support it, and think Neeson can serve anyway, just fulfilling the law impartially, (The Timmy Ellis gambit) they are asking him to do something which he is morally opposed to and that if he had a spine he’d resign before doing.

          But instead it’s paybacks and snouts in troughs and jabbering about the radical feminines or whatever the hell they are sweaty about this week.

          Political philosophy my arse. Conservatism is neurosis.

        • Tim Ellis 12.1.1.2

          BLiP, give me a single example where Mr Neeson’s role as a member of a three person panel would have been persuasive in a case relating to discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation.

          PB and TVOR haven’t managed to find one yet, except to protest about jobs for the boys (just as they were very vocal with Labour appointing Mr Williams and others to every government job under the sun).

          • Pascal's bookie 12.1.1.2.1

            You can’t prove a counter factual Tim. You should know this. Both TVoR and I answered your silly question.

            Please answer mine:

            Do you think that whether or not people who have been discriminated against may feel a bit apprehensive about dealing with Neeson, should have any bearing on whether or not he is suitable?

            It’s easy. I’m asking you your opinion, I’m not asking you to imagine an alternate universe and prove that something would definitely happen there. Just asking you what your opinion on the topic is. You do have an opinion on that particular question don’t you? Or is discrimination, like racism, just something you aren’t all that concerned about?

          • BLiP 12.1.1.2.2

            Timmy, what a thought!

      • The Voice of Reason 12.1.2

        All of them, Tim, all of them.

        • Tim Ellis 12.1.2.1

          Name a single one, TVOR. It shouldn’t be that hard to name just one.

          • The Voice of Reason 12.1.2.1.1

            Jeez, Tim, can’t you just answer a simple question without dissembling? Do you support having an anti gay bigot on the HRC or not? And if you do, are you also in favour of paedophiles on school boards, atheists on the Vatican council and god forbid, Michael Laws on the Geographic Board?

            The point is simple, Tim; Neeson is not fit to do the job he has just been gifted. He will take the money anyway, of course, because he is a typical tory bludger, sucking on the public teat. But it ain’t right just coz it’s right wing.

  13. Westminster 13

    I see Farrar’s got his knickers in a twist about Hipkins and Mallard pumping out “shotgun” questions via written PQs. The consensus of the drooling mob over there is that Labour should be told to get knicked. Mallard comes in for a particularly hard time because, shock of shock, it seems he’s using a mail merge to produce his questions. Wow.

    You know it’s the cut and paste oppositionism that I think the sewer dwellers are reacting too. It’s wasteful and inane. I mean questions like:

    What is the cost of [INSERT REGION] schooling improvement project in 2008/09 and which appropriation line or lines from Vote Education does the funding for this project come from?

    Are wasteful, I guess. Oh, wait, that’s Anne Tolley when she was in opposition asking one of her “inane” scattershot mail merge type questions.

    I guess it’s an outrage when Labour does it but when the Tories do it, it’s just good politics. What a friggin’ hypocrite.

    For my money, a pox on both their houses for such lazy efforts. But let’s not let Farrar get away with painting this as some sort of Labour low trick.

    • Gosman 13.1

      If Farar is correct then Helen Clark was only asked a total of just over 150 questions on her ministerial responsibilities during the last parliament. Wouldn’t you agree that it is a bit much for Labour to be asking John Key a similar number of questions just for a single month?

      • Pascal's bookie 13.1.1

        No, that just shows National are lazy bastards.

      • lprent 13.1.2

        I suspect that it is the way that he tends to disappear and leave gerry or bill to answer his questions when question time comes up. Makes him look like a target.

        Helen usually preferred to front up. But I guess that John isn’t as comfortable on his feet. Eventually he’ll get enough experience. After all the opposition are trying to give him the practice. Quite generous of them I thought…

        • Tim Ellis 13.1.2.1

          The questions relate to written questions of ministerial services, not oral questions LP.

          • lprent 13.1.2.1.1

            Ok. But didn’t the NACTs do that every year around xmas?

            Something about finding out what each ministry was doing for the end of year bashup from the minister responsible?

            It was almost a ritual… Ummm… link

            The Key apologists seem to have forgotten that National MPs used to routinely ask tricky questions of the then Labour government. One of their favourites was to ask about staff Christmas parties and presents. Most government departments do some sort of end of year function for their staff, so National’s questions were basically intended to find examples of where they’d gone a bit over the top so that they could shout from the rooftops about “waste’.

            Interestingly, they aren’t so keen to answer now that the shoe is on the other foot. I asked a written question of each Minister that’s almost identical to one Brownlee, McCully etc used to ask and they have all come back with the same answer: “The question the member asks relates to an operational matter which is the responsibility of the Chief Executive.’

            Interesting to note that when Labour was the government and National was the opposition the questions were OK, but now that National is in government they seem to think a lower standard of accountability should apply. In 2005 Annette King even went so far as to compile all of the answers into a handy little table for the Nats, so why are they suddenly ducking for cover?

            Anyway, I’m off to get a haircut. Get rid of the intense coding ‘mad scientist’ look and revert back to the military

  14. gitmo 14

    Odd

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/3187537/Nats-John-Key-popular-throughout-year-poll

    ….is this because the opposition is so cak, I can’t see any other reason as the Nats ain’t really doing a whole lot, perhaps that’s how NZ likes their politicians ?

    • Pascal's bookie 14.1

      Fucked if I know, but this

      Towards the end of the year (Goff’s) fortunes followed the same pattern as Mr Key’s, with the proportion of unfavourable opinion increasing.

      is funny cause on both sides it reflects their bases souring on them I suspect, rather than the squishy middlings.

  15. Merry Xmas and happy new year to everybody.

    I’m off to the beach till midJanurary

    I have faith that Obama is going to do the world proud in 2010!

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