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Open Mike 22/04/2018

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, April 22nd, 2018 - 137 comments
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137 comments on “Open Mike 22/04/2018”

  1. OnceWasTIm 1

    This morning, I made the mistake of checking out Granny Herald on my cell phone, only to be greeted with the following headline from Duplicity (put up at 5am):
    “It’s fair to compare Jacinda Adern to Donald Trump”.

    She goes on to justify her argument because firstly the Wall Street Journal said so, and secondly because both wanted to radically reduce immigration.

    The article seems to have disappeared as of 6am (who knows it might come back), but she should be embarrassed! Her superficiality and lack of any capacity for deeper analysis just screamed at me.
    It’s a shame she didn’t recall the policy during the campaign – such as the third tranche that sought to encourage immigrants to regions where various skillsets were needed.
    Or the bit after becoming government to increasing labour inspectors.
    Actually NOTHING LIKE Donald Trump.

    Perhaps she should also consider the pushback from ministry officials (stacked during her wonderful National government) who keep making absolute fuckups (such as the recent Mark Middleton debacle, inconsistent decisions – some obviously based on demographic profiling, the enabling of shitty tertiary education and scams, the lack of adequate oversight).
    In some ways, it must be nice to be an absolute airhead – having to do a bit of research and work rather than just sailing along on one’s prejudices

    • Barfly 1.1

      It’s still there and HDPA has truly jumped the shark on this – mind you I imagine it’s a clickbait win.

      • patricia bremner 1.1.1

        Yes Barfly, she does write “click-bait”, so I don’t bother any more.
        She is shallow jealous and vain when she writes about Jacinda, so I stopped reading. As OncewasTim says, “it must be nice to be such an airhead”,

    • Wayne 1.2

      Ministry officials are not stacked by National or indeed any other government.
      New Zealand has an entirely politically neutral public service. It is one of its strengths, which is not to say officials get every decision right.
      The only appointments by Ministers are to governance boards. They tend to be people who have either technical expertise or public service experience. Ex MP’s are often appointed for the latter reason.
      But governance boards do not actually run organisations or in fact employ the people in the organisation.

      • Stuart Munro 1.2.1

        Yeah? So CERA and Southern Response were stacked with screaming incompetents rather than slavering corrupt party minions? Truth is they were both.

      • OncewasTim 1.2.2

        Ok then @Wayne….by the previous CEO who in turn…..

      • Sacha 1.2.3

        “governance boards do not actually run organisations or in fact employ the people in the organisation.”

        They only set strategic direction and monitor performance – but who needs that, right.

        • savenz

          Clearly judging by NZ going down the toilet in many organisations and businesses, we need better governance boards.

          As well as better executive boards.

    • Ant 1.3

      Surely click-bait, but also related to the age-old ploy that if you wish to spread a false conception make sure the ‘lie’ is blatant and outrageous.

      • Ed 1.3.1

        Maybe duplicity is an avid reader of Joseph Goebbels.

        “If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State.”

        • reason

          Big lies … Iraq

          usa airstrikes …. now NATO member Turkey … bombing the ruins

    • Carolyn_Nth 1.4

      HDPA can claim Ardern is the NZ Trump when
      secret recordings are found of her bragging about dick grabbing pretty young men;
      when pretty young men come forward in numbers and accuse JA of sexual harrassment;
      when Forbes claims JA is a billionaire only to find that judgment was based on mis-information from JA herself;
      when JA annouces she’ll dismantle our public health system;
      when JA takes to announcing policy on the hoof on twitter;
      when JA appoints several members of her family to key government positions;
      when our security services start investigating JA’s election funding from Russia;
      when JA starts accusing No Bridges of misuse of his work cell phone and starts chanting “Lock him up!”;
      when JA announces a policy for building a wall across the Pacific Ocean and Tasman Sea;
      when JA announces we’ll attack Jamaica (nothing to do with them beating our netball team);
      when JA declares Jerusalem the capital of Israel;
      hires Steve Bannon;
      decalres trans people unfit for military service;
      pulls NZ out of international climate agreements;
      …… etc, etc

      • Well said, Carolyn – now repost it on the dedicated post by mickeysavage.

      • Sanctuary 1.4.2

        I do believe anyone who reads that piece will actually be more stupid for the experience.

        Fact free balderdash by a blathering idiot, it wouldn’t make it past the editor of a community newspaper but it appears good enough for the Herald.

        Please please please Shayne Currie, put up your firewall so we can see exactly what people think such “quality” opinions are worth!

      • Bewildered 1.4.3

        To be fair hdpa was only claiming policies are like trump not Ardern her self

        • Ed

          To be fair Ardern’s policies do not resemble Trump’s.
          To be fair duplicity is a bad writer at best, a liar at worst.

          • Bewildered

            Fair enough that’s your opinion, but many here are making out hdpa is claiming the Ardern has the same moral make up, world view and values as trump which she is clarly not Again like Richardson debate it is playing the person rather than debating point made, no one can deny labour played on immigration d
            Fairs and stoked these fairs to their advantage In opposition and during election, wrongly or rightly

            • McFlock

              I can.

              Labour immigration policy and campaigning was fuckall compared to trump’s “rapists and murderers” lines. No wall-building. Just an argument that the population was expanding faster than the infrastructure, and therefore population growth needed to be dialled back a bit.

              Based on policy or personality, comparing lab/ardern with Trump is bullshit, and anyone who defends it has turned off their brain for the duration – or are, at the least, bewildered.

              • Tracey

                Exactly. Bewildered seems to give the benefit of the doubt to people who spout the status quo and sublimjnally pine for the 1950s. To be fair.

            • Incognito

              Why a beautiful red wine is like a rotting corpse.

              Some comparisons, metaphors, or analogies just don’t work unless you want to send a subconscious or subliminal message that drags one down to the level of the other. This is not an episode of Myth Busters or The Biennale for Geeks and Nerds.

              In case you wondered: both are the result of living microorganisms in action.

            • Tracey

              I wonder why HDPA didnt say Labour’s policies are like President Trumps if it is about the mesage not “playing the man”.

              Your concern to be fair to them is almost torturous. You know, to be fair, your concern is almost naive.

    • savenz 1.5

      Sadly no headline from Granny that Jacinda dramatically wants to increase high wages and high waged jobs!

      Or is it fair that the first generation that had to pay mortgage like student loan repayments compounding daily for years, now are paying taxes so that corporations many of them offshore based can pay lower and lower wages to their staff and the student loan generation pay tops ups (over 2 billion in WFF alone), as well as pay for both the infrastructure, housing and social costs for all the new people coming in to ‘pick apples’, ‘milk cows’ and “work in restaurants” or just be relatives of the aforementioned low skilled workers, or have a baby here – not that it is their fault, just another way for the government under the business spell of propping up poorly run business and sell more cornflakes and petrol and retirement village rip offs and luxury apartments with high body corporates.

      For every low waged worker and their aged parents coming in (more people entering are not coming in on the skilled worker category) , there is probably one higher paid experienced professional leaving the country in search of fairer wages.

      What do you think this country is going to be in another 5 years with that going on… we already have had decades of it, productivity down, social costs up, prisons full, our migrants having less skills than even 5 years ago, can’t build a house, can’t make tech work (at government/council level etc), asbestos trains, headline the other day someone putting their children to work as prostitutes…

      • OncewasTim 1.5.1

        You don’t have to tell me @savenz. Not a good siuation for NZ or the immigrant.
        The race to the 3rd World

    • Chuck 1.6

      Think your self-lucky…HDPA could have gone a little further and brought up how the Labour party attempted to identify non-NZers via their surname, and then tried to use that for political gain.

      • OncewasTim 1.6.1

        I could yes. Or could just see it as a hamfisted attempt to identify levels of foreign ownership because our civil service had been run down over nine years and keeping any usable stats could have identified the problems we’re facing now…whether in health or education or housing or you name it.

        • savenz

          Maybe Natz deliberately made sure know one knew and the stats can’t come back to them how much they sold our country off and to whom…

          As well as made it easy to hide people’s true identity and origin using trusts and corporations.

          And of course making gift duty free (it used to be $27k and then you were taxed) so that you can easily just move those million dollar assets around, tax free in NZ.

      • Incognito 1.6.2

        Personally, I blame Jacinda Ardern for Rogernomics. And for the death of my guppy when I was 9.

      • Graeme 1.6.3

        You mean like Rob Stock did in this article on Stuff today, https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/money/103301517/submissions-on-foreign-homebuyer-ban-flood-in-from-concerned-residents

        Picking out of the submissions to the Act all the Chinese sounding names that are supporting the intent of the act because of the negative effects overseas capital is having on our housing market

    • Muttonbird 1.7

      I’ve taken the step of removing that particular RW publication from my favourites bar. Call it a boycott. You can do it too!

    • Hooch 1.8

      I never look at the herald website but decided to yesterday. What a disaster zone I don’t know how any body actually reads it with fifty thousand ads everywhere and a confusing layout. The sooner it disappears into irrelevance behind a paywall the better.

    • Incognito 1.9

      The New Zealand Herald is just like Donald Trump

      They both want a wall and for NZH it can’t come soon enough!

      • Ed 1.9.1

        I’m sure the Herald was better 25 years ago.
        Great quote by Seeby Woodhouse on how awful NZME and Stuff have become on MediaWatch.

        “I listen to podcasts, watch educational videos from the likes of Unfiltered, TED and Creative Live, read magazines like Wired, and use Twitter, mainly for news,” he replied.

        No Stuff? Herald? RNZ? TVNZ?

        “I don’t want to bag our entrants but I’ve been disappointed by the likes of the Herald and Stuff,” he told Mediawatch.

        “I used to have them on my (phone) but … the last time I was on the Herald I saw a story about the Kardashians. Why is a New Zealand newspaper reporting some clickbait about the family? I think it’s adding to global mental retardation (having them) in the news,” he said.

        “Both of them have become more involved with driving traffic and clicks. News organisations have fallen into that trap and charging advertisers for clicks-per-thousand views. I think the quality of Herald and Stuff has fallen dramatically,” he told Mediawatch.”


  2. patricia bremner 2

    OncewasTim hit a nerve Wayne?

    • OnceWasTIm 2.1

      I think maybe I did.
      Two people in particular who seem (to put it diplomatically) accident prone, as they were in a previous life.
      Of course @ Wayne hasn’t yet managed to set himself loose from a 50’s and 60’s notion of an impartial public service.

      It may exist amongst the peons and middle management, but sure as shit stacking the deck at senior level is alive and thriving – to the extent that a few are desperately trying to push back – not yet having to come to terms with the fact that there’s a new show in town. (And I don’t mean that tribute to The Muppets)

      (Wayne’s gone – in fact he always was ‘gone’ – but so too are Messrs Choice and Coleman).

      It’ll be interesting to see just how big some Ministers balls are in what is becoming a bloke’s pissing competition – especially when some of the the ‘stacked deck’ have proven themselves to be as thick as two short planks that are four times as wide.

      Perhaps they’ve forgotten they don’t actually have a very pretty record.

  3. Jenny 3

    Free the Andarko Two

    Repeal the Andarko Amendment

    The Andarko Amendment is the law passed by the last National government that made it illegal to protest against deep sea oil drilling ships.

    The Andarko Amendment is an affront to democracy.

    Greenpeace Director Russel Norman has called this law “Repugnant”.

    If a law like the Andarko Amendment had been brought in to make it illegal to protest against Springbok games in 198,1 tens of thousands of New Zealanders would have been detained and put on trial.

    This is not democracy

    Related comments: “Greenpeace trial going ahead despite Government’s oil exploration ban”

    “Vital Part of Any Democratic Society”

  4. Carolyn_Nth 4

    Rod Oram has an informative piece on Newsroom this morning. He dismantles the economic argument for sea bed gas exploration in NZ.

    Taranaki and elsewhere in NZ:

    do not need to become more dependent on fossil fuels while the world is trying to become less so; and anyway, investing in gas projects would draw scare resources such as capital, materials and construction workers away from projects that are more advantageous economically and environmentally.

    Instead, we can help ourselves and help the world by playing to our comparative advantages in agriculture and renewable energy.

    • alwyn 4.1

      I imagine that we will have the Green Party coming out in favour of seabed mining in the area around New Zealand shortly.
      They claim to be in favour of renewable energy and electric vehicles. That is going to require lots of the rare earths to produce the equipment. At present we would have to get these from China and the security of supply is very uncertain.
      Will James Shaw insist that we should develop industries to recover these from the seabed? A sample story on the subject is in the ODT.
      Probably not of course. There are Hector’s dolphins only about 1,000 km away.

    • Ed 7.1

      Superb article

    • reason 7.2

      Our actions for the British at the end of WW I … had us violently suppressing a independence movement … among the whippings and some civilian massacres …. NZ soldiers were still serving and taking casualties …. WWI ended in 1919 for a couple of NZ regiments …

      1914 -1918 leaves out the bad role we undertook against the nations and people of Egypt and Palestine

      “Episodes like the Egyptian revolt suggest that a squalid imperial reality underlay the noble rhetoric, which is why it has been relegated to obscurity. ”


  5. Ed 8

    George Galloway and Peter Hitchens talk about Syria

    • Ed 8.1

      Peter Hitchens asks a very important question.
      One that often a point of contention between posters on this site?

      Why are left-wing media, which once opposed war, now cheerleaders for righteous intervention?

      Remember, this is the Guardian, a newspaper which for decades was the house journal of ban-the-bombers and protestors against the Suez adventure and the Vietnam war, with very high proportions of Quakers, moth-eaten liberals and vegans among its readers. Yet now it has become a trumpet for armed intervention. Under the pious slogan ‘Comment is free…but facts are sacred’ first stated by its greatest editor C.P.Scott, the paper’s opinion column declares (again without the slightest qualification): ‘Syria’s renewed use of chemical weapons against its own people at the weekend is shameless and barbaric. Dozens of people in the remaining rebel-held suburbs of Damascus were suffocated by Saturday’s chemical attack on the Douma district. This is not the first time this has happened. Since the use of sarin at Khan al-Assal in 2013 there have been dozens of chemical attacks by the regime. These deliberate attacks on civilians show callous contempt for humanity and disregard for the laws of war. Official Syrian claims that the latest killings have been fabricated are beneath contempt.’

      But if facts are sacred, how can the Guardian be so sure, given that it is relying on a report from one correspondent 70 miles away, and another one 900 miles away, however good they are at their jobs, and some anonymous quotes from people whose stories it has no way of checking?”

  6. mary_a 9

    I believe Jacinda Ardern and Jeremy Corbyn have met. But I can’t find anything in msm (hardly surprising) about it. Tried Google, but only a message that Corbyn was going to host Jacinda at a meeting.

    Anyone out there got any info about this particular meeting please?

  7. Jenny 10


    REDLINE debunks the “Regime Change” conspiracy theory put about by the Cato Institute and other Right Wing political commentators.

    War and revolution in Syria: interview with Syrian left activist Ghayath Naisse
    REDLINE December 18, 2016

    “Neither Washington nor Moscow, neither Riyadh nor Ankara nor Tehran”

    Talking of “Red Lines”, Russia says that America has crossed none in bombing Syria, surprise, surprise, (not).

    Russia: US did not violate red lines during Syria strikes

    Russia’s foreign minister said Friday that the U.S. sought out and respected Moscow’s positions in Syria when it launched its air strikes last week.

    America has bombed Syria

    Syria has bombed Syria

    Russia has bombed Syria

    Israel has bombed Syria

    Turkey has bombed Syria

    What all those bombing Syria can not tolerate is a free revolutionary Syria.

    This all is all reminiscent to me, of the war of intervention in Russia, 1918 to 1920. Russia was invaded by 16 countries including America and England and Germany. Even though at the beginning Germany and America/England were still technically at war with each other. It has been argued that this brutal outside intervention, (which also saw the use of gas weapons against the revolutionaries), and the death and loss of many of the of the most popular and progressive of the Bolshevik revolutionary forces, was what opened the door to turn the Soviet Union into the oppressive Stalinist tyranny that it became.

    Did that mean that Leftists and progressives around the world should not have supported the Russian Revolution?

    As Marx said of the Paris Commune, (also bloodily suppressed and put down), “They stormed heaven”.

    The Arab Spring also stormed heaven, even in the cannons mouth, that the Arab Spring has been tragically subverted and put down and suppressed and even reversed, does not mean that it was not a valid attempt to liberate the oppressed people’s of the Middle East, suffering under the twin yoke of foreign imperialism and local tyranny, just as the Palestinians are doing right now.

    We should support and celebrate these liberation movements. At the very least these attempts by the people of the Middle East to free themselves deserve not to be derided and condemned or mocked.

  8. Whispering Kate 11

    Mary_a I have just been chatting with a friend from NP on the phone. she said the meeting was held in a private home and it went off like a rocket, they got on very well indeed – maybe the TV news tonight may show it but I wouldn’t hold my breath. I have no idea where she read or heard it so can’t link.

  9. Jenny 12

    At the risk of being labeled a head chopper again;

    I can’t help wondering, are those who attack America for bombing the Syrian regime’s installations, (even when it is OK with the Russians), and not one single Syrian soldier or civilian was killed. Are they the same people who supported America bombing Isis where thousands were killed?

    The big difference being that the US did not telegraph their punches with Isis, as they have done with the Assad regime, no pre-warning to prevent civilian casualties.

    Compare this to the 100 Syrian civilians killed by the US air strikes on Raqqa

    US-led attacks kill 100 civilians in 48 hours
    Women and children among the dead as a barrage of US-led coalition raids hit ISIL-held city.

    At least 100 civilians have been killed over the past 48 hours by US-led air attacks targeting fighters in Raqqa, the de-facto capital of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL, also known as ISIS) in Syria.

    Residents told Al Jazeera on Tuesday that at least 100 civilians had been killed since Sunday, with 55 civilians killed in the eastern neighbourhoods of Bedou and al-Sukhani on Monday.

    Meanwhile, the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) put Monday’s death toll at 42, including 19 children and 12 women, and said 27 were killed on Sunday – a two-day total of 69 people.

    The deaths came on the second consecutive day of a ferocious bombing campaign in Raqqa, more than half of which has been captured by the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) battling ISIL.

    “The tolls are high because the air strikes are hitting neighbourhoods in the city centre that are densely packed with civilians,” SOHR director Rami Abdel Rahman told the AFP news agency.

    “There are buildings full of civilians that are trying to get away from the front lines.

    “Why Are Some on the Left Falling for Fake News on Syria?”

    Because some readers will instantly jump to the conclusion that my criticism of Assad and Putin’s brutal war on Syrians must imply that I am in favor of the U.S. bombing Syria, let’s put it on the record that, no, I am not in favor, nor have ever been in favor of the U.S. bombing any country for any reason. Bombs, especially those coming from the U.S., are never launched with the well-being of ordinary people in mind. They are launched for reasons that have more to do with geostrategic and/or financial interests. The U.S. was wrong to have been bombing Syria in order to oust Islamic State, and it is wrong to bomb Syria in order to attack Assad.

    • Ed 12.1

      Robert Fisk is not fake news.

      • Jenny 12.1.1

        Faking it for Assad
        Yvonne Ridley

        The pro-Assad lobby has already seized upon Robert Fisk’s exclusive about his “search for truth” in the rubble of Douma. In particular, they are emphasising his interview with a doctor who expresses doubts over the chemical attack and says that it was more likely a case of oxygen starvation caused by heavy shelling on a night of high winds which stirred up a dust storm. Fisk “found” the English-speaking Dr Assim Rahaibani after he shook off his government minders when he walked through the rubble strewn alleys of Douma.

        While I have nothing but admiration for Fisk — a man who inspired me as a cub reporter with his harrowing eyewitness despatches from the Middle East; in particular his reports after the Sabra and Shatila massacres of 1982 — not even the great investigative journalist that he is could reach a definitive conclusion. During his day trip to Douma he noted that it had been cleared of rebels and White Helmet volunteers who had all chosen to be escorted out of town to Idlib, which is possibly fated to become the site of the rebels’ last stand.

        • Ed

          What about Patrick Cockburn?
          What about Peter Ford ?
          What about Craig Murray ?

          • McFlock

            don’t know them
            don’t know them
            fucking nutbar who seamlessly goes from contradictory bullshit to contradictory bullshit

            • Ed

              Admitting you have strong opinions and at the same time admitting you are ignorant of what you are commenting about.
              Classy, mcflock.

              • McFlock

                Nah dude. I’ve read some of Craig Murray’s bullshit, not the other two.
                And Craig Murray is utter bullshit.

                • Ed

                  Of course he knows less than you.

                  • McFlock

                    Oh, I don’t know how much he knows.
                    But his comments about novichok and instant death were a bit of a laugh, especially as he said porton down couldn’t identify it, and then when the OPCW said it was what the brits said he ignored his previous statements and just went off about how it being novichok proves nuffin about whodunnit.

                    I think the link has links from you or me for all the various elements of that statement.

                    He’s still less of a joke than you are, though.

                    • Ed

                      Let’s try and avoid the personal insults, eh?

                    • Ed

                      And here is Peter Hitchens.
                      Another independent journalist

                    • McFlock

                      Why would I bother wasting my life with someone you recommend? Minions is on telly.

                    • Bill

                      Where did he say novichok caused instant death McFlock?

                      That claim isn’t made by Murray in any part of the quoted text you link to.

                      And did Porton Down identify Russia as the source of the chemical agent, and was that (the source) what Murray was commenting on, given that May and others had stated there was no other possible source?

                      Also, did Porton Down identify a specific chemical or a chemical type? And was that not what Murray was commenting on?

                    • McFlock


                      The exact term he used was “instant acting”. Either way it’s bullshit. And as I said “the link has links from you or me [ed] for all the various elements of that statement.”

                      And did Porton Down identify Russia as the source of the chemical agent, and was that (the source) what Murray was commenting on
                      Actually, fair call on that. My porton down comment was wrong.

                      But “instant death” was reasonable when he wrote about “instant acting” and “lethality” to argue that a three hour delay is inconsistent with a nerve agent was blatantly wrong.

                      Or as he put it in one of the links as quoted by Tony Veitch:

                      But if it was on the doorknob, the last contact they could possibly have had with the nerve agent was a full three hours before it took effect. Not only that, they were well enough to drive, to walk around a shopping centre, visit a pub, and then – and this is the truly unbelievable bit – their central nervous systems felt in such good fettle, and their digestive systems so in balance, they were able to sit down and eat a full restaurant meal. Only after all that were they – both at precisely the same time despite their substantially different weights – suddenly struck down by the nerve agent, which went from no effects at all, to deadly, on an alarm clock basis.

                      This narrative simply is not remotely credible….

                      I’ve yet to see Ed or whomever cut&paste murray’s retraction for that bullshit.

                    • Bill

                      @ McFlock.

                      Can you explain why you think questioning this idea that two people who were contaminated by a highly toxic and effective chemical agent (by all accounts) at the same time, suffered the effects at the same time, but not until some hours later (like an alarm clock as Murray says) is bullshit?

                      How would you explain two people with quite obvious physiological differences reacting to some substance simultaneously long after the substance has been introduced to their bodies?

                      Maybe you can refer me to any other substance that seemingly works independently of a persons physiology, but only after quite some time has passed?

                    • McFlock

                      Well, I’m no doctor, but you asked.

                      So I’d say that it’s bullshit because it doesn’t exclude the possibility of a nerve agent to being not “remotely credible”.

                      I’d say it’s bullshit because “instant acting” relies on injection or inhalation in order to get any toxin circulating in the bloodstream and being distributed around the body in that period of time.

                      I’d say it’s bullshit because it assumes that two people found affected by a chemical at the same time were affected at the precisely the same time, rather than one being overcome first and the other being merely disoriented for a short period before also being overcome.

                      I’d say it’s bullshit because if the official claim is skin contact, then the main physiological difference to consider in effect delay is transport of the substance through the skin and into the bloodstream, rather than body type or gender or some other broader physiological difference.

                      I’d say it’s bullshit because “instant acting” in the middle of town with people responding soon enough to clear a blocked airway requires other people to be in very close proximity of a substance that would still be in the air, and yet remain unaffected.

                      But mostly I’d say it’s bullshit because Murray either now accepts it was a nerve agent but hasn’t retracted his “remotely credible” line, or he still believes it wasn’t novichok but is disingenuosly arguing that the weapon doesn’t imply the perpetrator.

                    • Bill

                      I can’t quite grasp what you’re saying in the first two paras, but never mind.

                      I’m no doctor either, but from my experiences in a past life, toxic substances that have long “lead” times don’t hit people at the same time if everyone ingested at the same time.

                      I’m thinking it’s a bit of a stretch for you to suggest that one went unconscious and the other was too disorientated to react but orientated enough to sit on down right beside them. Or alternatively, that after one had become disorientated, that the other didn’t react before they too had passed from normal to disorientated to unconscious . (By seeking some assistance in both cases)

                      I can’t follow your second to last para either.

                      Questioning how some strange process of toxicity manages to slam dunk two people at the same time after a long “lead” time hasn’t really got anything to do with nerve agent/not nerve agent. And I don’t believe Murray confuses those separate issues.

                      And he’s been consistent in saying that many countries would have an interest in “embarrassing” the Russian Federation (eg – a shopping list of ME actors in Syria), and that many countries and non-state actors have the capability to produce or acquire novichoks, if they were used, while also not ruling out the Russian Federation as the culprit.

                    • McFlock

                      Well, ingestion isn’t the same as skin contact, is it. Nicotine patches are pretty universal.

                      As for disorientation in a small group, an analogy is working in confined spaces with fumes, where progressive disorientation isn’t always obvious to other people. Or I had a friend relaying some of the instructor’s cautionary tales of hypoxia when training for his pilot’s license. Or the difficulty in identifying hypothermia in others when you might be in the same boat.

                      And yes, I’m sure he’s come up with no end of technically-possible but generally pointless reasons other nations might have had to “emabarrass” Putin by sneakily killing putin’s enemies in a way to intimidate future possible assets. Because, as we all know, the Russians are totally embarrassed by this event. Mortified, even. Lol.

                      Oh, my second to last paragraph:
                      First responders cleared an airway.
                      That requires the first responders to have been on the scene within a few minutes of the initial exposure to this “instant acting” nerve agent, otherwise the person with the blocked airway would be dead.
                      The only responders exposed (if any of the cops had been first responders) had been to his house, although all were tested.

                      Murray’s bullshit “slam dunk” (if you will): if a nerve agent is “instant acting” as he said, it can’t have a three hour lag. So why were the only people to get sick ones who had been in Skripal’s house?

                • mauī

                  More of the utter bullshit from Murray, first question “Who do you think did it?” Response “Well we don’t know…” He didn’t go full Theresa so he must be mad…

                  • McFlock

                    Again, I never said he was mad.

                    Simply that Murray, unlike Fisk, doesn’t seem to admit when he gets things wrong (Fisk making a prediction about Turkey going into Arfin, Murray claiming categorically that the chemical couldn’t have been novichok). Murray just continued on to the next Russian defense line.

                    edit: tell a lie, I said he was a nutbar. It’s not actually a clinical term, though

          • Jenny

            What about them?

            You’re telling this story.

          • mauī

            Absolutely correct Ed.

      • Jenny 12.1.2

        “Dear Bashar al-Assad Apologists: Your Hero Is a War Criminal Even If He Didn’t Gas Syrians”

        Is that you Ed, are you a Bashar Assad apologist?

        Sorry to interrupt: I know you’re very busy right now trying to convince yourselves, and the rest of us, that your hero couldn’t possibly have used chemical weapons to kill up to 70 people in rebel-held Douma on April 7. Maybe Robert Fisk’s mysterious doctor has it right — and maybe the hundreds of survivors and eyewitnesses to the attack are all “crisis actors.”

        Maybe Assad didn’t use sarin to kill around 100 people in rebel-held Khan Sheikhoun a year ago either. A joint investigation by the United Nations and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons found “unmistakable evidence” that he did. Human Rights Watch and Hans Blix also agree that Assad was probably to blame. But maybe they’re all wrong. Or, maybe they’re paid shills for the CIA…..

        …..Now, I totally understand why those of you on the MAGA-supporting far right who cheer for barrel bombs don’t give a damn about any of this. But to those of you on the anti-war far left who have a soft spot for the dictator in Damascus: Have you lost your minds? Or have you no shame?

    • adam 12.2

      You keep saying the people who have murdered Christians and other minorities in Syria are liberation fighters Jenny. I can only understand that If you think liberation through murder is a thing.

      As for labeling anyone who rejects groups like the white helmets and their liberation fighters friends, as supports of Assard is just really dishonest way to argue.

      Long live a Free Rojava!

      • Jenny 12.2.1

        Adam. You should at least try and provide some links or proofs to back up your allegations, so we can judge their worth.

        Those who reject groups like the white helmets, and who actively slander and abuse these rescuers, whether they are conscious of it or not, are Assad supporters.

        That you haven’t even got the courage to admit to it, and are trying to distance yourself from the Assad regime, tells me that you do have some sense of shame.

        “How Syria’s White Helmets became victims of an online propaganda machine”

        he Syrian volunteer rescue workers known as the White Helmets have become the target of an extraordinary disinformation campaign that positions them as an al-Qaida-linked terrorist organisation.

        The Guardian has uncovered how this counter-narrative is propagated online by a network of anti-imperialist activists, conspiracy theorists and trolls with the support of the Russian government (which provides military support to the Syrian regime).

        The White Helmets, officially known as the Syria Civil Defence, is a humanitarian organisation made up of 3,400 volunteers – former teachers, engineers, tailors and firefighters – who rush to pull people from the rubble when bombs rain down on Syrian civilians. They’ve been credited with saving thousands of civilians during the country’s continuing civil war.

        They have also exposed, through first-hand video footage, war crimes including a chemical attack in April. Their work was the subject of an Oscar-winning Netflix documentary and the recipient of two Nobel peace prize nominations.

        Despite this positive international recognition, there’s a counter-narrative pushed by a vocal network of individuals who write for alternative news sites countering the “MSM agenda”. Their views align with the positions of Syria and Russia and attract an enormous online audience, amplified by high-profile alt-right personalities, appearances on Russian state TV and an army of Twitter bots.

        • adam


          So you saying Jaysh al-Islam were not in East Ghouta? Nor had it as a base of power? Are you saying that Al-Nusra Front were also not in East Ghouta? That there was no Unified Military Command of Eastern Ghouta which included the free Syrian army?

          Do you know who is on the so called rebels side? Do you understand the factions?

    • Bill 12.3

      Can you please link to the comment where someone called you a head-chopper?

      • Jenny 12.3.1


        Answer the question

        Who did this?

        And is it not evidence of genocide?


        • Bill

          Is that because no such comment exists?

        • Jenny

          I know you won’t reply Bill. You never have, and you probably never will.

          Your deliberate and obdurate silence in the face of this atrocity exposes you as a supporter of mass murder.

          • Jenny

            Oh God I could troll through all the abusive and sly comments accusing me of being a supporter of terrorism to find the exact quote. But this is not what this is about is it Bill?

            The same with the petty nit picking accusing me of plagiarism.

            The fact is Bill your support for the Assad regime is indefensible and shameful. And you will look for the little slightest excuse to remove anyone who challenges your position, which you know you cannot defend honestly.

            Answer the question.

            Who did this?

            And is it not evidence of genocide?


            • Bill

              I only entered this sub-thread to ascertain who had called you a head-chopper.

              I’m now taking it as read that no-one has called you head-chopper and leaving it at that.

              • Stuart Munro

                Pretty sure it was Brigid – not inclined to dig through it all though.

                • Bill

                  Pretty sure neither Brigid not anyone else around here would make such a ludicrous accusation.

                  • McFlock

                    Well, if nobody’s going to fucking google it themselves, I will.

                    Closest I get is that Adam, in a clear reduction to absurdity, flipped around one of jenny’s comments to write:

                    “Jenny and all the other apologist for the head choppers, whether unwitting or conscious, you need to hang your head in shame.”

                    Brigid seemed to think Adam was being serious, and said it was “so true“. And called one side “head choppers” and the other side “the Syrian Government”, when Adam’s point was that by this stage of the war pretty much all sides (more than two) are as pure as muck.

                    A bit like the Syrian arguments here.


                    • Bill

                      Well, I don’t think Adam was being flippant or absurd. But that’s by the by. No-one called Jenny a headchopper. end.

                    • McFlock

                      Unless somebody else actually does their own search and finds a different, more explicit example.

        • reason

          “Established in Turkey and trained by an ex British military mercenary, a “private security” expert, James Le Mesurier….. with multi-million-US, NATO & Gulf state, funded war protagonist money ” ….

          Their lack of affiliation with anyone credible ….and their embedding with Al Quada Jihad extremists … makes them dodgy as

          They are as credible as any war propaganda …. https://off-guardian.org/2016/10/09/intl-civil-defence-org-the-white-helmets-are-not-even-civil-defence-in-syria/

          “* The name “Syria Civil Defence” was stolen from the legitimate Syrian organization of the same name. The authentic Syria Civil Defence was founded in 1953 and is a founding member of the International Civil Defense Organization (1958).

          * The name “White Helmets” was inappropriately taken from the legitimate Argentinian relief organization Cascos Blancos / White Helmets. In 2014, Cascos Blancos / White Helmets was honored at the United Nations for 20 years of international humanitarian assistance.

          * The NATO White Helmets are primarily a media campaign to support the ‘regime change’ goals of the USA and allies. After being founded by security contractor James LeMesurier, the group was “branded” as the White Helmets in 2014 by a marketing company

          Theres a white helmet blooper moment from them in this video …. 5 mins 45 seconds https://www.bitchute.com/video/hUaWa8L9YPXL/

            • reason

              Which specific part of what I posted about WHs (white helmitz), was ‘lies Jenny ?, Establishment?. Funding?. Anything ?

              What proof do you have that my sources quoted work for propaganda ministries anywhere ? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fBN-61G_U8Y

              Do you have any links to nobel and compelling pro-war speeches from Blair / Cameron for me to read about … ?.

              You do realise before Russia interviened in the usa.Israel british, saudi sponsored al-quada / Isis shit fight in Syria ….. that Syria was about to suffer the same fate as Libya…. That war torn blood soaked smouldering destruction of a modern society …

              Thats an undeniable truth …..And to wish that fate upon any nation / people is despicable.


              If the western, Israeli, Saudi support to Islamist fighters stopped ….and the extremists left / stopped killing … then Russia would stop bombing / fighting them. .. but in this latest chapter of a long plan, people with a fascist distemperment do not want peace. https://gowans.wordpress.com/2016/10/22/the-revolutionary-distemper-in-syria-that-wasnt/

              If you want to see some fake pro-war lies …. from the same people funding and spreading white helmet propaganda / lies ….This trip down memory lane …. and the throwing babies out of incubators ( false ) outrage …. is a forerunner of the more refined WHelmitz stuff

              Anyway Have a good look in the mirror when you talk of “inciting fascists to kill”…. “spreading propaganda” …. Jenny

              • Jenny

                “How do you know the truth?”

                “You don’t know the truth”, smiling idiot shouts down Syrian refugees in Auckland, alongside neo nazi wannabees draped in Russian flags and wearing ‘Make America Great’ again caps.


                I would suggest to you Reason, that you need to go and actually converse with some Syrian refugees, instead of being like the smiling idiot in this video, shouting Syrian voices down, while standing with fascists.

                Meet your new friends;

                Italian Fascists Adore Bashar Assad

                White Nationalists love Bashar Al Assad

                • Jenny

                  Here you are reason, someone, unlike you, who actually went and talked with Syrian refugees fleeing Assad’s fascist tyranny. (not to mention also fleeing America’s home grown variety, you know the ones, your new friends).

                  Even more than that, Jake Halpern went further and took the time and trouble to document their story in a format that even you reason might be able to comprehend.

                  Two brothers, Jamil and Ammar, fled Syria in 2012, with their wives and children. After four years waiting in Jordan, they finally received a visa and traveled to the United States as refugees. They arrived on Nov. 8, 2016, which happened to be Election Day. It was, of course, a loaded moment. In effect, the brothers and their families landed in one country and woke up the next morning in another.

                  Since then, I have been reporting their stories and creating a “true comic” about their lives in America. I went to their mosques, schools and job-training programs. I was also there when Ammar’s family received a frightening death threat, which ultimately forced them to flee their town. Today the illustrator, Michael Sloan, and I bring you the final installment in their story. — Jake Halpern

                  “Welcome to the New World”

                  Don’t support fascism. (It really shouldn’t have to be said).

              • Jenny

                What proof do you have that my sources quoted work for propaganda ministries anywhere ?


                I invite anyone with any computer skills to critique the evidence contained below.

                Any takers?

                How about you, lprent?

                “The research that shows the link”

                The Guardian spoke to several researchers studying the spread of disinformation and propaganda online who have found evidence of a targeted Russian influence campaign against the White Helmets.

                Fil Menczer, a computer science professor at Indiana University, has developed a tool called Hoaxy to chart the spread of misinformation online. Searching for “White Helmets” reveals a handful of sources generated hundreds of stories about the organisation. “It’s like a factory,” he said.

                The same handful of people are quoted as “experts” in articles that are repackaged and interlinked to create a body of content whose conspiracy claims gain a semblance of legitimacy.

                The analytics firm Graphika has spent years analysing a range of Russian disinformation campaigns including those around the Macron leaks and the Russian doping scandal. In research commissioned by the human rights group the Syria Campaign, it found that the patterns in the online network of the 14,000 Twitter users talking about the White Helmets looked “very similar” and included many known pro-Kremlin troll accounts, some of which were closed down as part of the investigation into Russian interference in the US election. Other accounts appeared to generate more than 150 tweets per day (more than 70 is seen by scholars studying bots as suspicious).


              • Jenny

                Sterile Whataboutism writ large.

                You couldn’t get a better example; Two talking heads in a studio devoid of any factual evidence, without ever addressing the genocide being committed by the Assad regime against the Syrian people, say why they think Syria is like Iraq, like Libya, like, Vietnam even.

                From the you tube link supplied by reason above.

                Open Mike 22/04/2018

                • reason

                  You wrote so much to say so little Jenny

                  This is the elephant in your eye ….

                  ” You do realise before Russia interviened in the usa.Israel british, saudi sponsored al-quada / Isis shit fight in Syria ….. that Syria was about to suffer the same fate as Libya…. That war torn blood soaked smouldering destruction of a modern society …

                  That;s an undeniable truth …..And to wish that fate upon any nation / people is despicable.”


                  Here’s where Jenny is actually coming from …

                  ” February 1982, when the Muslim Brothers seized control of Hama, Syria’s fourth largest city. Hama was the epicenter of Sunni fundamentalism in Syria, and a major base of operations for the jihadist fighters. Galvanized by a false report that Assad had been overthrown, Muslim Brothers went on a gleeful blood-soaked rampage throughout the city, ” … ” In some cases, victims were decapitated [49] a practice which would be resurrected decades later by Islamic State fighters. Every Ba’athist official in Hama was murdered. [50] ”

                  “Washington had conspired to purge Arab nationalist influence from Syria as early as the mid-1950s, when Kermit Roosevelt, who engineered the overthrow of Iran’s prime minister Mohammad Mossadegh for nationalizing his country’s oil industry, plotted with British intelligence to stir up the Muslim Brothers to overthrow…..”

                  “Washington funnelled arms to Brotherhood mujahedeen in the 1980s to wage urban guerrilla warfare against Hafez al-Assad, who hardliners in Washington called an “Arab communist.” etc etc
                  Here’s a ‘what about’, just for you Jenny …Did / have you ever posted about the genocidal sanctions imposed on Iraq / Syria over the last couple of decades ? …. or the present mass starvation as a war crime in Yemen ? …. 14 minute mark in the below video

                  And for a bit more of what about Jenny ….

                  What about the fact her pro-war views / reposts come from the same people making money from the genocide in Yemen ?? Jennys friends ?

                  • reason

                    What about …. Jenny didn’t actually refute one thing …… not 1 ,,,,, about the WHelmitzz ….

                    The link below refutes most of her upside down inside out Syria chants


                  • Bill

                    There’s no need to attack Jenny when attacking her argument/position, aye? And yes, I know she continually getting personal on it, but still…

                    • reason

                      sorry Bill …. I should not have responded to her insinuation I’m a friend of white power / fascists.

                  • joe90

                    Still waiting for you to provide a link to back up your assertions.

                    • reason

                      oh your poor ego ….. …. demand another ban ?

                    • joe90

                      Nah, I’m going to assert that because the commenter known as reason supports Bashar Al Assad, a murderous thug supported by white nationalists and Greek Neo-Nazis, the commenter reason is indeed, a friend of white nationalists and Greek Neo-Nazis.


                    • reason

                      Joe90… ” I’m going to assert that because the commenter known as reason supports Bashar Al Assad, a murderous thug supported by white nationalists and Greek Neo-Nazis, the commenter reason is indeed, a friend of white nationalists and Greek Neo-Nazis.”

                      dear oh dear ……. covering yourself in glory now Joe

                      This is the elephant in Joe90s eye ….

                      ” You do realise before Russia interviened in the usa.Israel british, saudi sponsored al-quada / Isis shit fight in Syria ….. that Syria was about to suffer the same fate as Libya…. That war torn blood soaked smouldering destruction of a modern society …

                      That;s an undeniable truth …..And to wish that fate upon any nation / people is despicable.”

                      I’m against fascists of all stripes … including ones Britian helps … like their proxy fighters in Syria


                      … and western backed fascists in the Ukraine

  10. CHCOff 13

    Brexit solutions, at least in relation to the British public.

    Ref#1: Are the British people happy with the current course of Brexit negotiations or do they want their elected majority govt. to further present them questions for public veto to negotiation issues

    Ref#2 if asked for. The public are given a few questions of veto for direction on the relatively stickiest issues with the Brexit negotiations.

    • savenz 13.1

      The UK should have a new referendum based on the Cambridge Analytics scandal as to whether there was interference and BREXIT went over the campaign amount. Also a significant amount of people did not vote and so it was clear what sort of mandate there was for BREXIT.

      • CHCOff 13.1.1

        Having a referendum to change the result of a prior one without the prior one having taken effect is a VERY different proposition to referendum(s) on ‘how’ to proceed with aspects of a prior referendum.

        The other points seem fairly obvious to the contrary, all be it in a more talk talk talk talk area that is not of obligatory interest to me related to the initial post.

        • savenz

          If someone cheats in a test, you repeat the test. They need to repeat the referendum and check it’s what the people of the UK all agree too.

          They won’t do that, because pretty sure, most people in the UK never wanted Brexit in the first place.

  11. Sacha 14

    Can someone please make a blank post called ‘Syria’ tomorrow and deposit all the blather about that topic in it. Repetitive, scrappy and dominating every day here.

  12. Good morning Newshub I agree with you Australia is not treating US Kiwis fairly .
    It is to old-aged primitive behavior the big brother takes all the lollies one day Humans will be able to override this behavior and treat everything fairly.
    Duncan you have a new news reader M J hello.
    I say there should be a return to glass and plastic bottles it will clean up the enviroment and provide pocket money for some.
    Mark S yes I would pay more tax to keep OUR Beautiful country running and humming.
    But you have missed one point we need to get companies to pay more tax we pay our fair share the wage earners .Ka kite ano P.S Mark yes our children learn off our behaviour and we should leave the reffs alone to reff Duncan south examination is good and admitting to ones flaws is Ka pai

    • eco maori 15.1

      Newshub Paddy that was a excerlint story on block chain Cryptocurrency is the future if that new system would be safe now but what happens when Quantum computing becomes a reality nothing online is safe then .
      As for doctor Goggle what does one do when the sandflys are spewing lies to ones doctor and your are brown well I don’t get very good service from the doctor I still have a problem that I was not satisfied with the doctors here some pain killers by.
      I also noticed they leave the door open when I am being checked by the doctor now I wonder why.
      AB Coach A giving some hints of his team I wounder why he did that ada ???????.
      Ingrid Its cold in Rotorua at the minute Ka kite ano P.S you know who I am watching next

      • eco maori 15.1.1

        The Crowd Goes Wild good evening Mulls and James Mulls you remember the correction I gave you and the Rock guys algood bro .
        You got it James its all about the culture a good fair culture is a winning Formula
        Those bass and blue nose that Clark is pulling up are small compeared to the ones Eco Maori has seen blue nose makes the best sashimi raw fish and is tasty on a BBQ you guys give me a sore face .Ka kite ano P.S Eco Maori admires sea birds Billara i thinks is the Name for sea hawke

  13. rashel 16

    “Many thanks for posting when you have the opportunity, Guess
    I will just bookmark this blog.

    My web page edujobs Circular

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  • Funding boost for Community Law Centres
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