Open mike 22/06/2011

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, June 22nd, 2011 - 42 comments
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Step right up to the mike…

42 comments on “Open mike 22/06/2011”

  1. Jenny 1

    Global Day of Action for a Financial Transaction Tax (22 June)

    The Tax Justice campaign supports today’s (22 June) Global Day of Action for a Financial Transaction Tax coordinated by Oxfam in Britain.

    “Momentum is building worldwide for financial transaction taxes that target the banks, speculators and big corporates,” says Vaughan Gunson, New Zealand’s Tax Justice campaign coordinator.

    “The international money men who caused the global financial crisis must be made to pay the bill,” says Gunson. “Financial transaction taxes are the best way to make that happen.”

    It’s widely accepted that financial transaction taxes levied internationally could raise hundreds of billions of dollars, which could then be used to fund programmes that help the world’s poorest. (For more information on financial transaction taxes and the Global Day of Action click on HERE)

    The Tax Justice campaign in New Zealand is calling on the government to seriously look at how a FTT could be applied here.

    “There’s an urgent need to broaden the tax base in this country to maintain public services, protect our people from the effects of the economic crisis, and re-build Christchurch,” says Gunson,

    “The beauty of an FTT is that would be not squeeze more tax out of people already paying their fair share.”

    “It is a very progressive tax, because those who end up paying the most tax would be those involved in high frequency trading in New Zealand’s financial markets – these mostly overseas speculators are currently paying no tax to the government,” says Gunson.

    Mr Gunson says a small percentage tax on the money flows of financial speculators operating in New Zealand markets would raise significant government revenue.

    “Here’s a solution to the government’s debt problem that it would be irresponsible for politicians to ignore,” says Gunson.

    Tax Justice supporters will be out on the streets continuing to collect signatures for a petition calling on Parliament to: 1. Remove GST from food; and 2. Tax financial speculation.

    40,000 signatures have so far been collected for the Tax Justice petition, which will be presented to Parliament on Tuesday 16 August. Su’a William Sio, Labour MP for Mangere, will be receiving the petition and presenting it to the House.

    For more information on the campaign go to http://www.nogstonfood.org

    For comment, contact:

    Vaughan Gunson
    Tax Justice campaign coordinator
    021-0415 082
    svpl@xtra.co.nz

    Kay Murray
    Tax Justice spokesperson and Alliance Party co-leader
    021-1672 843
    ksimmondsmurray@xtra.co.nz

  2. happynz 2

    Nothing much going on except the ground shifting around a lot. From about 19:30 onwards we had aftershocks about every ninety minutes. The strongest was 5.3 at just after 22:30 and then swarms of shakers ranging from 3.5 to 4.4 through the night. First there’d be a muffled roar like an old diesel starting up and then a strange rocking and floating sensation. It felt like spending the night on an old tugboat chugging across a harbour.

  3. dupdedo 3

    Christchurch announcement should be made today. It will be announced that 80-90% of land will not be able to be built upon. Not sure of the areas. Was signed off yesterday.

  4. Tigger 4

    So when Key made comments about Pike River being illegal in Australia wasn’t he stepping all over the findings of the Royal Commission (in that, effectively he was saying the standards weren’t up to international quality?).
    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/5174587/Come-clean-with-Pike-River-concerns-Key-urged

    And why is the government still waiting for the enquiry before doing something about safety standards? Because it’s clear they don’t really care about the Royal Commission results. And if they’re not doing anything – and if we know safety standards are too lax – surely any further deaths in mines in the meantime should be treated as criminal?

    • Jim Nald 4.1

      Yes, John Key, now that you have admitted our standards are so lax, what are you doing to improve our standards ?

      Chinese and Australian mines have higher standards!

      “It’s absolutely clear already that the mine regulations are insufficient and the Government should be acting quickly.

      “We know they can pass quick legislation to remove workers’ rights.

      “We’d like to see them pass quick legislation to IMPROVE workers’ rights.”

      – Helen Kelly from 2’57”

      [audio src="http://podcast.radionz.co.nz/mnr/mnr-20110622-0728-pike_river_families_appalled_at_lax_nz_mining_standards-048.mp3" /]

    • pollywog 4.2

      hmmm…now wheres that video of Gerry the Hut, from a few years back, laughing and rarking up the National party faithful in parliament as they scoff at and bury the findings of a Labour commissioned safety report that shows our mining standards weren’t up to scratch ?

      In here somewhere i believe… Blood on the Coal

      I wonder if the Minster of fat useless fucks still think’s it’s funny ?.

  5. Can you see yourself, under a coconut tree
    Wanting for nothing, or maybe a cooler breeze
    Where all things romantic, in the south pacific ?

    French Polynesia’s assembly is working on a resolution to formally demand the territory’s re-inscription on the UN list of territories to be decolonised.

    After what was called an informal meeting last week, the assembly’s commission on international relation is today due to draw up the text.

    http://www.rnzi.com/pages/news.php?op=read&id=61332

    Let me be more specific, get out of the pacific
    Ki te la pacific, get out of the pacific !!!

  6. William Joyce 6

    Looks like Smile and Wave is putting his foot in it every time journos ask him questions.
    Twice now he has kicked off the Christchurch land storm – first, weeks ago, stating that 10,000 homes would need to be abandoned.
    After, last weeks quakes he started talking about whole suburbs being abandoned.
    I bet there are people in CERA wishing the PM would STFU!
    Now he is making comments to the Australian media that he has not made here (or to the Pike River families) and that prejudges the Commission findings.
     
    Now he is blaming Labour for consenting the mine but fails to mention that it was a National government and their Neo-Lib economic thinking that decided in 1992 that mine owners should be in charge of determining the safety of the mine and so scrapped the mines  inspectorate.

    • prism 6.1

      Will Joyce – Joky Hen (tm logie97 !) may have been making some off-the-cuff unscripted comments. His minders need to tighten the reins I think, but no the enlightening flow of thought should not be stopped.

      • logie97 6.1.1

        prism – happy to see Joky Hen become part of the nomenclature for the PM. Acknowledgements not necessary. Just continue your thoughtful comments – good reads. (I think it was Vicky who pointed us towards an anagram generator site late one night and I am sure we could use it to find further apt names).

        • prism 6.1.1.1

          Ok logie97 thanks. I’ll continue with my current favourite Joky Hen. Interesting ones arise from that anagram generator. We shouldn’t forget some of the old ones though. I think it was Blip who came up with King John of Charmalot a while ago. Quite good, the film on Camelot had the song What do the common people do etc.

  7. Jim Nald 7

    If Labour wants to frontfoot this, I say take the blame AND make a promise:

    – take the blame for NOT having overturned National’s previous lowering of workers’ standards

    – take the blame for having accommodated the right/centre right and NOT battling harder for workers

    And:

    – promise to go into urgency, at the soonest opportunity, to improve standards for workers, and

    – promise, when they are next in the government, to review and reverse all of National’s policies that have attacked, undermined and chipped away at workers’ rights and progressive values.

    • William Joyce 7.1

      Like you say, JM, there is much to be said for a “mea culpa” (or a “my bad”) and stressing that we have learned how the old policy doesn’t work and then going on to promise to do better.
      If only Clinton had said, “Yep – I did it and I should not have”
      Pollies always have the need to never admit a mistake or the need to do a rethink.

  8. ianmac 8

    Fran O’Sullivan is reflecting concern for the process used against Mr Hubbard. She wonders if the powers of the SFO have bypassed the rights to natural justice.
    Does seem a bit odd. Hope politics have not intruded to protect certain politicians?

    “Such state force is seldom seen in New Zealand’s commercial history, writes Fran O’Sullivan.”

    “How can Allan Hubbard fight 50 fraud charges when the state controls his personal funds, refuses to fully pay his lawyers, controls documents he needs for his defence and still won’t reveal who laid the complaint that ultimately led to him being slapped into a fiscal straitjacket?”
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=10733654

    • ZeeBop 8.1

      Please, Hubbard will never see jail. The trial will take so long, and as we are seeing the process is going to be drawn out just to add to it. If Hubbard is smart he’ll welcome the opportunity of yet more appeals and delay.

  9. The Goff makes me ill.

    His comments about Hone and Mana

    “If Hone Harawira won the Te Tai Tokerau seat, Mr Goff says the Labour Party would be unable to work with him.

    “In government – and we do plan to be in government – you need to have reliable allies, and he’s proven right through his political career to be anything but reliable,” he says.

    “The distance between us on values and philosophy is just too great…I just don’t buy into that separatist philosophy.”

    http://www.3news.co.nz/Davis-deserves-to-win—Goff/tabid/419/articleID/216012/Default.aspx

    So all the talk about forgiving goff his sins from the past when he was part of the cabal that helped fuck the country is for naught, because reliability is the key – reliability – yes we can rely on goff – to what?

    Is the distance too great between a politician of Mana and goff – the values too dissimilar?

    I know who i’m voting for – the party that represents the disadvantaged and stands for social justice and equality and goff isn’t a member of that party – thank goodness.

    • Pascal's bookie 9.1

      Looks like Goff is lining himself for a post election takeover of the ACT party. Watch out Brash!

      • just saying 9.1.1

        Wouldn’t be the first time Goff has been in negotiations to join the ACT Party. Maybe he thought he could do more to further the right wing cause by staying put. It’s certainly turned out that way.

        The right’s greatest weapon is Goff, not Key. If he wanted to further the interests of the left , or even a Labour election win, he would have resigned as leader long ago. He has consistently chosen not to.

        NACTs second biggest weapon is the rest of the Labour caucus in refusing to dump him.

        Key would be nothing by now, without this Labour “opposition”.

        Sir Philip……
        ….services to the rich and powerful….

    • Lanthanide 9.2

      Personally I’d prefer if Labour didn’t out-right rule out Hone and Mana.
       
      But it becomes a game of public perceptions, and by doing this, National can’t wave Hone around like the bogey man – “a vote for Labour is a vote for Hone” like they try to do with Winston Peters. So there’s a tactical reason for doing so.
       
      At the same time, it is unlikely to blow back up in Labour’s face. In any parliament where Mana are the king-maker, they’re not going to side with National and Act. So Mana-held seats effectively shrink the size of parliament. There are cases where it could make a difference, like a complex arrangement where Mana + Greens vs MP & UF were together king-makers, eg MP & UF go with National unless Labour goes with Mana and Greens.

    • Jenny 9.3


      I think that the accusation that Harawira is unreliable, bares closer examination.

      The question is, Is this verbal attack by Goff aimed at Harawira, just political rhetoric to weaken a politician whose political views he is opposed to?

      Is this attack even accurate?

      “he’s proven right through his political career to be anything but reliable,”

      Phil Goff

      Yet not once during his term in government as a Maori Party MP, did Harawira break Maori Party caucus discipline and vote against the direction of the Maori Party.

      Yes, Harawira bitterly complained, and publicly criticised, (as he claimed was his right to do,) some of the right wing legislation that the Maori Party supported in parliament.

      Even on this site he, Harawira was condemned by Labour supporters for being a hypocrite for voting for legislation that he didn’t personally support.

      Though he voted with the Maori Party on every occasion as a disciplined member of their caucus, it was his willingness to challenge and debate that political direction, which was cited as the reason for his expulsion from the Maori Party.

      Harawira fought his expulsion from the Maori Party because he claimed, (and with some justification), that he had never broken party discipline and that therefore there were no grounds for his expulsion. Also, (with some justification), Harawira claimed that he had a right and even a duty to raise his misgivings about the direction of the Maori Party in private and in public.

      My question is this;

      Isn’t it a tad bit inconsistent for Labour Party members to condemn Harawira for maintaining party discipline even when he disagreed with it’s direction, and for Goff to then also condemn him for being unreliable?

      Am I wrong in thinking that there is a contradiction here?

    • North 9.4

      The name’s Ph’Goff. It’d be choice if he’d do just that.

      Certainly I won’t be putting my name near a Labour ballot in November. Never NOT voted Labour in 40 years. He can Ph’Get it this time.

      What finally unleashed the inexorable build up of my somewhat embarrassed “God……this ain’t Labour…..” senses was this; Harawira announces he’s gonna resign and precipitate a by-election……… “Oh no…..we won’t work with the (demon) Harawira……..! says Ph’Goff.

      You could see him all glassy-eyed over the expectation that “Mr and Mrs Ignorant Honky Middle Class Who’re Shit Scared of The Meorries” would stand up and clap.

      Wouldn’t it be great if by miraculous chance it came down to Hon-Aye having the casting vote on whether Ph’Goff got to be PM . That particular Meorrie would be a fine type then.

      Sick sick sick !

  10. Morrissey 10

    Stomping on Dissent at Yale
    If you care about the question of Palestine, and indeed about democracy and free speech, you should click on the following links, in series. Each one builds on the next. You can see how one of the most compelling speakers and scholars in the United States is constantly hounded by the enemies of democracy and free speech.

    While, in a way, this is a painfully funny example of a young student politician (Stephen Marsh) being browbeaten and bullied by a zealot (Yishai Schwarz) it’s also profoundly disturbing, when you reflect that this is what happens even at a supposedly liberal institution like Yale.

    NOW READ ON…

    http://www.normanfinkelstein.com/pdf/yale/THE_MARKETPLACE_OF_IDEAS_AT_YALE.pdf

    http://www.normanfinkelstein.com/marketplace-of-ideas-at-yale-update/

    http://www.normanfinkelstein.com/marketplace-of-ideas-at-yale-update-2/

    • freedom 10.1

      yup, those Yale boys sure know how to cook turkey

      • Kiki 10.1.1

        Dear “freedom”: Are you trying to be funny? Your comment is certainly obscure, but I suspect that’s because you don’t have a clue what this topic is about, rather than because of any complexity or nuance in your thinking. Perhaps you should click on those links, and educate yourself.

    • D-D-D-Damn ! 10.2

      Yep, Finkelstein’s one of the most inspiring scholars I’ve ever come across. Discovered his work in 2002. The destruction of his academic career has been a bloody disgrace.

    • Brett Dale 10.3

      Freedom of speech works both ways.

      • Morrissey 10.3.1

        “Freedom of speech works both ways.”

        Not in the mind of Yishai Schwartz. Or Alan Dershowitz, or Anthony Weiner, or David Horror-wits, or [insert name of your favourite Israeli government shill here].

  11. freedom 11

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/news/politics/5176964/Brownlee-stuck-in-lift-for-30-minutes
    kind of feel for the other passengers,
    not an experience that would have been on anyone’s bucket list

    • William Joyce 11.1

      “It’s diets all round,” National Minister Gerry Brownlee’s advisor suggested after being stuck for 30 minutes with the minister and colleagues in a lift.
      Picture

  12. Oscar 12

    Time for a new ice age

    And with the news the sun is now essentially devoid of sunspots makes for worrying reading.

    But worrying? Whom to. All we need now is to re-establish our manufacturing industries, in particular clothing lined with possum fur so we can all remain warm and toasty.
    After all, the last ice age peoples survived with fur coats and fire.

    Oh, but we won’t be able to burn wood to keep warm will we? After all, it releases CO2 and thats bad.

    • Draco T Bastard 12.1

      Oh, look at that, it’s Oscar the Ignoramus showing off his ignorance – again.

    • lprent 12.2

      Yep. Despite the many many things that his simple lines have wrong – I won’t bite.

      It is too much like potting a possum with a light and a 0.22″. You keep firing the rounds and they keep bouncing off those bloody thick skulls. You have to either get a higher velocity weapon or drill them through the eye.  However my preferred Oscar solution requires a blog equivalent of a machete…… I’m sure he will notice that (won’t he?)

      • Oscar 12.2.1

        So when winter finally comes in NZ from mid July – mid December, you’ll all sit around going, oh geez, that CO2 got’s a lot to answer for hasn’t it!

        Nevermind the fact that Earths natural state of being is ICE. Not warmth, but COLD. Even the IPCC make note of the fact we’ve come through a geological warm period.

        Humans can survive the cold much better than the heat. But if privatised power companies become a reality, we sure won’t be able to pay for the heating required 9 months of the year when it’s too darn cold.

        I wonder who the ignoramus is DTB. You with your constant warmist cries. I sure won’t be sorry to see the back of the global con that the scientists have built up for themselves over the last 30 years and indoctrinated a whole generation into believing that CO2 is bad.

        Lprent – tell me why greenhouse growers pump CO2 into their tunnels for plants? After all, you seem to take great delight in breaking down the CO2 is oxygen for plants. I’ve shown you many references to plant life existing much more beneficially at a CO2 level greater than 1000 ppm, but you (fail) to recognise the relevance of it. After all, Humans need around 25% O2, and with an atmospheric composition sitting around 14% – this is far more dangerous and deadly to mankind than CO2.

        And the answers in your face when trying to investigate how to increase O2. Plants. But with a lack of CO2, it becomes a self perpetuating cycle. No CO2, fewer plants, less O2, goodbye mankind.

        The reptiles will survive. After all, they don’t generally breath O2 in such vast quantities.

  13. ianmac 13

    I think that maybe I viewed this before probably via the Standard but am still breathtaken or is that gobsmacked as they say, about the audacity of USA Bankers and Politicians and the strategy of the Chinese.
    I expect the clued up here have already seen this but the last 10 minutes are compelling. – again.
    “All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace (Ep. 1) – ”

  14. Morrissey 14

    Why is Radio NZ National using low-grade American reporters?
    Priscilla Huff knows nothing about Afghanistan, yet she’s reporting on it. Why?
    Wednesday 22 June 2011
    National Radio Checkpoint, 5.45 p.m.

    For about the 357th time, a news item on the plan to “draw down” U.S. troops in Afghanistan. With her customary crisp, efficient style, Checkpoint anchor Mary Wilson crosses to “Priscilla Huff in Washington.”

    PRISCILLA HUFF?!?!?!???

    This would have rung alarm bells with anybody who has any familiarity with that reporter’s work over the years. Her reporting has about as much authority as Andy Haden’s “source in the Crusaders organization”, as much integrity as Paul Holmes’ September 2003 apology to the Auckland Ghanaian community, and as much understanding of the political situation in Afghanistan as… well, as John Key’s understanding of the situation in Afghanistan. [1]

    Huff begins her report with this remarkable statement: “President Karzai has continued to criticize America’s efforts to help his country.” [2]

    After making it clear that the U.S. is occupying, terrorizing, imprisoning, bombing, shooting, kidnapping and torturing Afghanis to help Afghanistan, Huff decides to really extend herself and do some fieldwork. Naturally, that does not mean that she goes and interviews someone who actually knows about the situation, such as an academic, a military analyst, or (God forbid) an Afghani. [3]

    No, what Priscilla Huff does is walk out onto the street and ask three passers-by what they think of “the plan to draw down U.S. troops”. The first two people know absolutely nothing; they blither about how “we need to finish the job we started.” In other words, they repeat what they’ve heard people like Priscilla Huff telling them on CNN and CBS and Fox News for the last decade. It’s a perfect example of the recycling of sound-bite propaganda in the echo-chamber of what Americans call “public debate”.

    Hearteningly, though, the third (and last) person seems to have thought about things: “We need to get out immediately”, he says. “We hear lots of talk from politicians about how we can’t afford to pay for social programs in this country, but we never hear them say we can’t find money for war.”

    And Priscilla Huff is by no means the only bad reporter, or even the worst, that appears on National Radio.

    The question is: WHO CHOOSES THE LIKES OF PRISCILLA HUFF?

    [1]Throughout her report, Huff repeatedly (and obediently) uses the Pentagon’s own insulting weasel expression “draw down” instead of “withdrawal”.

    [2]American troops are there to “help” Afghanistan? That will be news to the people of Afghanistan, who overwhelmingly want the U.S. to withdraw (“draw down” in Pentagon-speak).
    http://www.rawa.org/temp/runews/2011/05/09/poll-56-percent-want-u-s-troops-out-of-afghanistan.html

    Americans want them out as well…
    http://www.thewashingtoncurrent.com/2011/06/poll-majority-believes-us-should-leave.html

    [3] It would of course be totally unacceptable to interview an Afghani like Malalai Joya…

  15. Jum 15

    Questions and Answers 21 June 2011
    ‘Hon Phil Goff: If the Prime Minister is worried about youth unemployment, why has he allowed a consistent decline in the intake into apprenticeships since he became the Prime Minister, and why does he not do something about that, instead of looking at cutting the wages paid to young people?

    Rt Hon JOHN KEY: I think the Leader of the Opposition is confused in his facts and incorrect.

    Hon Phil Goff: I raise a point of order, Mr Speaker. I could ask the permission of the House to table a series of documents from the news media, widely reporting the facts that I have just mentioned. You would not normally allow that to be done, but I ask you to consider allowing it on this occasion, as the Prime Minister’s standard answer is to reject the facts that he claims are wrong in what I have been saying to him.
    Mr SPEAKER: One of the reasons why we do not do that is that the information is readily available to all members of the House. What is more, WHAT IS PRINTED IN THE MEDIA MAY BE NO MORE “FACT” THAN ANYTHING ELSE. In all my 27 years’ experience in this place, I have found that it is extremely unlikely to be “fact” if it has been printed in the media. That is one reason why we do not table recent newspaper clippings. I realise that the member could be frustrated by that kind of answer, but a Minister is entitled to dispute the information provided in a supplementary question. Ministers should be careful in doing so, and I am sure the Prime Minister will have been careful in doing that.

    Hon Phil Goff: I raise a point of order, Mr Speaker. Is it in order for the Prime Minister to dispute facts that are available to every member in this House in order to avoid answering a question?

    Mr SPEAKER: If that was established to be correct, that would be a very serious issue…’

    What more proof could we need than from the Speaker of New Zealand Parliament to stand up and say the media is a liar.

    So, what with Huff now the guru on Radio New Zealand, last bastion of objectivity, a lying media, economic experts chosen from banks to tell us all about how to get ourselves further into debt, we look forward to a future full of Fox, and we’re one lot of stuffed chickens.

  16. jackal 16

    Hero of the Week Award – Riot Dog

    If you watched tonight’s TV3 News at six, you might have caught a glimpse of the world renowned Riot Dog. He’s been in regular attendance at riots and protests in Athens, Greece since 2008…

    • ianmac 16.1

      When I was in Athens a couple of years ago, I was intrigued at the number of largish dogs wandering or sleeping on the streets. They seemed to be placid but also seemed to be strays.
      So now I know that the blighters were just resting ready for the next protest. Ta.

  17. Draco T Bastard 17

    Don’t Be Wimps

    If the over-valuation, or the threat of it, persists for any length time, there is then a second-order range of consequences. Bright graduates cease to go into productive industry; they prefer to try their luck in asset speculation, finance and retailing – anywhere that is protected from foreign competition. People look to non-productive assets like housing as the place to make their fortune. Capital moves to wherever it is possible to make a quick buck. Our successful businesses move overseas or are sold to overseas buyers. Corporate headquarters move to Sydney or Shanghai. Does any of this sound familiar?

    In the longer run – a generation or more – the culture itself changes. Borrowing – in the belief that the word owes us a living – becomes a way of life. We lose faith in saving, investing, and producing goods and services for sale as a way of providing for ourselves.

    It was Einstein who said “Insanity is doing the same things over and over again and expecting different results”. Our results are not about to change any time soon.

    Artificially high interest rates courtesy of the RBNZ and it’s focus on keeping inflation down is depressing our economy forcing people to look for other ways to make an income rather than being productive. If we want to actually become wealthier then we need to change what we’re doing and this government is doing everything it can to ensure we keep doing the same thing.

  18. Craig 18

    Courtesy of Mother Jones (US), a heartbreaking look at what might well happen here if NACT are allowed to carry out their welfare privatisation plans and foist ‘social services’ off on de/unregulated ‘child corrective facilities’ like the ones mentioned in Kathryn Royce’s chilling “Escape from Missouri” (July/Aug 2011: 52-57):

    http://gaynz.com/blog/redqueen/archives/1083

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