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Open mike 23/05/2019

Written By: - Date published: 7:00 am, May 23rd, 2019 - 183 comments
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183 comments on “Open mike 23/05/2019”

  1. Jenny - How to get there? 1

    This site can't be reached.

  2. marty mars 2

    I agree with Annette Sykes here

    The only idiot here is the man in the mirror Shane… show compassion and understanding instead of promoting idiotic commentary more about capturing a media moment than addressing the issue of family violence itself

    Jones is just a media slurping wanker.

    Jones "I say to our Maori people – this sort of carry-on, don't go blaming colonialism; don't join the chorus of idiocy I'm seeing on the East Coast where the artists don't want Captain Cook celebrated because they're responsible for family violence on the East Coast. That's pathetic. I hate that soup of excuses."

    link here



    • Adrian Thornton 2.1

      Duncan Gardner and Shane Jones,,,

      ..it is like watching some unfunny old joke from the mid 90’s, what did one boofhead say to the other?…nothing worth listening too.

      • greywarshark 2.1.1

        Shane Jones was the man that ordinary men thought was a good sort to have as an MP.    So don't go calling Labour's needed voters boofheads! It’s not politic.


        Looking at the 300,000? 7.4% Pasifika population*, I think that through the connections of health, ethnic identity and conservative religion, Dr Mary English is likely to pull them to RW conservative National through her connections with such entities as Le Va. Which is working for Pasifika and also able to obtain funding from Whanau Ora which is a fund forming a big part of Maori hopes to assist them in their advancement.  Smart organisation by such as Le Va may see them get more effect from their funding than Maori receive and achieve.

        Welcome to Le Va | Le Va    https://www.leva.co.nz/
        At Le Va our dream is that Pasifika families and communities are able to unleash their full potential in New Zealand and beyond. We support and encourage this …

        And there is something ineffective about the way that government agencies work in with Whanau Ora.  A government review of Whānau Ora shows the approach is working well for Māori and Pacific families, but there's not enough buy in from other agencies.

        21 Feb 2019 – The Whānau Ora Minister Peeni Henare released 'The Whānau Ora Review Report – Tipu Mātoro ki te Ao' yesterday. https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/te-manu-korihi/383028/government-review-finds-its-own-agencies-don-t-buy-into-whanau-ora-enough

        Despite the initiative being launched in 2010, the report found that some government agencies still don't know what Whānau Ora is, and don't rate it.

        It also found that central government agencies are, in some cases, opting out of their responsibilities and expecting Whānau Ora partners to do their job for them. 

        That sounds as if government is using Whanau Ora as a type of 'slush fund' and that Maori aren't getting the services and opportunities that should be arising from its proper use.   If Labour Coalition wants to retain the support of Maori and voting numbers, then they had better pull finger.    Carmel Sepuloni is showing signs of being an alert, careful, crafty mover on welfare issues.   I believe she will be looking at this issue and we should expect to hear of better policies in the coming year.

        Carmel has always been committed to improving social, health and educational outcomes for all New Zealanders but has especially focused during her career on low socio-economic groups, Māori, Pacific, disabled people and sole parents.  During her political career Carmel has brought to the fore the slashing of the training incentive allowance, made public the impact of cuts to ACC funding for survivors of sexual violence, campaigned for better legislation around social workers and fought for the right to privacy for social service users.     https:


        • Sam

          From the beginning the constabulary came to push Māori off of productive land and up into hills. That's a nice way of saying kill the mothetfuckers. To begin at the point of requesting whanau ora services can not make unproductive land productive again. If the land, Māori land, is not productive then it would produce outcomes such as 10% unemployment, high suicide rates, higher homeless and more advanced illness and disease as a result of unemployment. 

          • JanM

            Are you saying that Whanau Ora is simply papering over the cracks and we need to go into more depth to examine how it is that land designated Maori Land has, in so many cases, become unproductive? 

            • Sam

              Look, everyone thinks they're good at seeing "the big picture," because the human brain is wired to see big pictures, and if there isn't one, it makes one up. This is why conspiracy theories are so hard to kill – because the human brain demands there be a logical reason for everything. Paula Benefit must be the head of an organized conspiracy, because human psychology finds the idea of a random unplanned lunatic offensive. Do some reading on the psychology of blame and you'll come to realize how in love with easy answers human nature is.

  3. Sabine 3

    came across this yesterday


    The man accused in the mass shootings at two New Zealand mosques has been charged with carrying out a terrorist act. (the killer), 28, already faced 50 counts of murder and 40 counts of attempted murder for the March 15 shootings at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand.

    An additional murder charge was lodged against him on Tuesday in relation to a Turkish man shot in the attacks who died earlier this month at Christchurch Hospital.

    (the killer), who is an Australian citizen and a self-described "white supremacist," wrote an anti-immigrant, anti-Muslim manifesto before the attacks. New Zealand has made it illegal to possess the manifesto or video footage of the attacks, which the shooter streamed live online via Facebook.

    In a statement, New Zealand police said they are charging (the killer) with engaging in terrorism under the Terrorism Suppression Act. New Zealand enacted the law in the wake of the 9/11 attacks, and the charge filed against (the killer) is the first of its kind. Following the shooting, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said, "It is clear that this can only be described as a terrorist attack."

    I replaced the name of the killer with 'the killer' so as to not offend people who really don't want to see his name. 

    but hopefully it will put to rest that he is 'only' charged with murder and not with terrorism.

    May they lock him up and loose the keys. May they deport him to OZ after his sentences. May they victims and survivor find peace eventually. May the country learns from this tragedy. Any one can be a killer and a terrorist. Anyone. 

    • UncookedSelachimorpha 3.1

      Personally I would prefer he just be charged with murder, attempted murder, firearms offences etc (and yes, locked up forever). These are the tangible crimes of the attack. "Terrorism" is more abstract and subjective, and encourages examination of his reasoning and motives – and who cares about giving those any headspace.

      • Sabine 3.1.1


        I assume that the manifesto is in the hands of the police prosecutors and that they have read it. 

        And considering that just recently there was a shooting in a synagoge in the US with the shooter referring to our killer here and even mentioning that manifesto we can assume that there might actually be a group of like minded people that is hell bend on terrorising those that are not like them in color of skin, faith, and nationality. 


        that would fall straight under terrorism. 

        I find this charge perfectly apt and i hope he gets to spend a long time in prison.

      • Anne 3.1.2

        You are not alone US. Several eminent legal experts have expressed their doubts it is a good idea. They say the police are running a risk of giving 'the killer' a platform to re-broadcast his hateful ideology to the world. 

      • Sabine 3.1.3

        too late for that. Its just that terrorism and it should be charged at it. 



        so maybe if we charge it properly we might set an example of what happens when  the book of law is thrown at your properly. 

        there is no reason to cottonwrap that boy and only give him a good feel sentence. 

        • UncookedSelachimorpha

          " there is no reason to cottonwrap that boy and only give him a good feel sentence. "

          If convicted of 51 counts of murder, I expect he will never be released – ever. The previous longest sentence in NZ history (William Bell – 30 year non-parole) was for 3 murders.


      • Bearded Git 3.1.4

        Agree U.S. Elevates one vicious idiot with no proven links to a terrorist group/freedom fighter cause to being a terrorist-just what he would want.

        This was murder plain and simple.

        • McFlock

          Thing is, that just leaves it at "one bad man". But he had support networks before and during his actions. He had socio-political motives and a distribution plan for his video and manifesto. He apparently viewed his actions in the context of national and international reactions.

          It would be difficult to justify not charging him with terrorism, IMO.

          Operation of the trial to curtail his recruitment plans is up to the judge.

        • Sabine

          then take it up with the Prime Minister who stated this:


          New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said, "It is clear that this can only be described as a terrorist attack."

          also from here https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Definitions_of_terrorism

          A 2003 study by Jeffrey Record for the United States Army quoted a source (Schmid and Jongman 1988) that counted 109 definitions of terrorism that covered a total of 22 different definitional elements.[10] Record continued:

          "Terrorism expert Walter Laqueur also has counted over 100 definitions and concludes that the 'only general characteristic generally agreed upon is that terrorism involves violence and the threat of violence.' Yet terrorism is hardly the only enterprise involving violence and the threat of violence. So does war, coercive diplomacy, and bar room brawls".[11]

          i think that when someone shoots 50 people and wounds 40 others by shooting them in the back that counts as an act of terrorism hence terrorist. 

          It matters not one bit what hte shooter wanted or not, and considering that no one here know what he wanted because no one read his manifest or spoke to him maybe we should then take the Prime Minister at her word? 

          Or is that a case of i only take the PM at her word when i like the words she utters? 

          • alwyn

            The Prime Minister is going to try an keep this story going right through until the next election. Her behavior immediately after the shooting is the only thing she has managed to do properly in the time she has been PM. She will spend the next 18 months with a continuous set of references to the event.

            Like going to Paris for a pointless talkfest. Like getting this charge added to the 51 counts of murder when the only practical result is to have him go on ranting at his trial about his "manifesto". There will be a string of these sideshows to try and distract the public attention to the fact that all the real activities that this useless Government does turn out to be abject failures.

            We don't have any prospect of bread from these losers so they are going to try and distract us with circuses.

            • Incognito

              She will spend the next 18 months with a continuous set of references to the event.

              Why don’t you keep a count of it? It does not count if a journalist or reporter brings it up first. In 18 months you can report back to us and gloat about your prescience. Deal?

            • Sabine

              sure that is why the story that i linked to is from the NPR rather then the NZ Herald cause ….something anythinb blather rharharha 

        • greywarshark

          It could be an advantage to the USA to talk about him as a terrorist, then we have been attacked by this lot of low-lifes and are blooded brothers and can join the club devoted to take down this evil group who are attacking the wunnerful examples of western civilisation.  What's the woild coming to!

          • Sabine

            no the shooter there also wrote a manifesto and named him. what ever is what i say. 


            as for us joining the war on 'terrorism' we already did that see currently soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan. I doubt we will start a 'war on terrorism' that will involve the good people of OZ. 

            And frankly i don't believe that the Prime Minister is that short sighted. 

            And yes, we have been attacked by a terrorist, just not the one we thought would attack us. Hence why the police had to admit that it actually does not keep tags on our homegrown and imported lot of white wanna be Ersatz Nazis. 


          • Macro

            Don't be naive. 

            Why did he post his evil work on Facebook?

            Why did he publish a "manifesto"?

            Who was his audience?

            And what was he trying to achieve?

            If he had just wanted to kill a whole bunch of people, he would have more opportunity at a rugby game , or at an outdoor concert.

            No his aim was pure and simple to spread terror into the Muslim community, and by posting and boasting on line he hoped to encourage other to follow his "example". His boasting wasn't aimed at anyone other than those who egged him on in the first place. There is a very active online community who indulge in what would be considered dangerous and threatening conversation in any other group if they were from the Middle-East, or Asia or Africa. But because they are white European and worship such leaders as Trump, their bile and seditious behaviour has been pretty much overlooked until now. They have been allowed to carry on pretty much in the open what others would call terrorist plotting. It is not confined to one country, regrettably it is a world wide phenomenon, given strength by internet social media.

            We are not the first to categorise such attacks as terrorist btw. 

            James Jackson wanted to kill black people. Specifically, he wanted to kill black men. A lot of them.

            That's what the white supremacist admitted in court Wednesday after pleading guilty to killing Timothy Caughman in a gruesome act of violence that he said he believed would spark a nationwide race war.

            In a calm voice, The Associated Press reported, Jackson went against his attorney's advice and spoke before a Manhattan court judge, confirming the story he told New York Police Department officials when he turned himself in to authorities in March 2017 — a day after the brutal stabbing that killed the 66-year-old African-American man.

            At the time, Jackson told detectives that he had traveled from his home in Baltimore to New York to kill black men as a "declaration of global total war on the Negro race" and as a "political terrorist attack," the Manhattan District Attorney's Office said in a statement.


            "White nationalism will not be normalized in New York," Cyrus Vance, the Manhattan district attorney said in the statement, noting that Jackson's guilty plea represents the state's first-ever conviction for murder in the first degree "in furtherance of an act of terrorism."

            Jackson also pleaded guilty to charges of murder in the second degree as a crime of terrorism, murder in the second degree as a hate crime and criminal possession of a weapon in the fourth degree.

            "If you come here to kill New Yorkers in the name of white nationalism, you will be investigated, prosecuted, and incapacitated like the terrorist that you are," Vance said. "You will spend your life in prison without possibility of parole because there is no place in our city or our society for terrorists – 'domestic' or otherwise."


            • Sam

              Wha? It comes across as totally confusing when the woke try and use office politics speak as terrorism speak.

              As far as I can discern the woke definition of terrorism is: when a brown man hurts a white person.

              Where as when a white person is trying to hurt or be rude to a brown person it's racism.

              However, not to throw to much shade on the woke but a brown man being rude is defined as alt right speech / hate-speech.

              The definition the FBI uses is a better one IMHO: Terrorism is the unlawful use of force or violence against persons or property to intimidate or coerce a government, the civilian population, or any segment thereof, in furtherance of political or social objectives.

    • McFlock 3.2

      I got a firefox plugin that does text replacement. My browser at home calls him words beginning with "F".


    • SPC 3.3

      There should be two trials. 

      The first dealing with the murders. This would be a fairly open trial and the ability of the defence to deny guilt would be negligible. 

      The second dealing with hate crimes and terrorism. This would be a fairly closed trial, to deny the perp a media platform. An end of day brief summary to media and again at the end of the trial. The detail of the trial disseminated to experts in the field, law, security and academia.  

  4. Sabine 4


    is there a ban on article talking about the charges against the killer of christchurch? Or is the site just eating posts this morning for breakfast. 

    i linked to an article from NPR that stated the charges and against the killer, one of them being terrorist charges, 50 counts of murder and 40 counts of attempted murder. 

    it seems to disappear. 

    I am taking care not to name the guy or anything but its kind of weird. 
    I  can see the post, and then its gone? 

    • Sabine 4.1

      yep the site is eating posts. 

      i can hear it burp.

    • Enough is Enough 4.2

      "I am taking care not to name the guy."



      • McFlock 4.2.1

        because that's one thing he wanted from this act.

        • Sabine

          nope, because people here are sensible to it, and i don't actually try to aggravate people for the heck of it. 

          i personally think it is wrong, insofar as that we – the people – in a few years time will have a hard time arguing against those that want to white was history cause simply no one knows who it was and what happened to him, 

          But i don't name him because there are many here that don't want to know his name. That is the only reason. 

          • McFlock

            Fair enough.

            I'm not arguing for a damnatio memoriae, but blogs and popculture "thinkpieces" are one way for him to gain support. Textbooks will be fine, and the psychologists who will prod him in prison and deliver their assessments will help. But the scalpel that refreshes the injuries he caused should be cold and sterile, IMO.

    • Incognito 4.3

      I think you’ve got your answer (no straight out ban, but please do not name him). Some topics do get a little more attention than others do, obviously.

      Sometimes, comments are caught in/by auto-moderation and have to be manually released (or not). Moderators do have limited time, which means that it can take a while before a comment gets approved and released (or not).

      • Sabine 4.3.1

        i have never named him here, and i don't have any intention to do so. 

        pretty much any comment of mine ends up in moderation, so go figure.  But that was odd cause i could see it and then not, and it was a bit early for anything else then coffee.  

        • Incognito

          Hi Sabine, I don’t know what happened with your comment appearing and disappearing this morning. It could have been a ‘glitch’.

          When a comment is held up in/by auto-moderation we try to deal with as soon as we can but as I said, we have only limited time.

          I don’t recall seeing any comments from you being held up but next time it happens I’ll try to let you know the reason. Frankly, I’m a little puzzled by your words “pretty much any comment of mine ends up in moderation, so go figure.” That doesn’t seem reflected at all at back-end of TS!?

  5. Macro 5

    Pike River mine open and pictures


    The first images from inside the New Zealand’s Pike river mine, where an explosion killed 29 men nearly nine years ago, have been released.

    The shots were taken as a three-person re-entry crew broke through the 88cm concrete seal on Tuesday at the mine’s opening to start the process of gathering evidence on what caused New Zealand’s worst mining disaster since 1914. The bodies of the 29 victims remain in the mine.

    On Tuesday, the families of the victims gathered outside the mine entrance to release 29 yellow balloons and call out the names of those who died when the concrete plug sealing off the mine was breached.

    Anna Osborne, whose husband Milton died in the disaster, said it was “amazing” to witness. “It was so emotional, we couldn’t contain our tears … Just seeing the concrete being pulled from the portal and the men going in and thinking ‘they are doing that for us’.”

    • Sabine 5.1

      i hope that closure is finally coming to these family. 

      • Macro 5.1.1

        Yes I do too

        Funnily I haven't seen any reporting on the event other than in the Guardian.

        • Sabine

          yes, a bit with the article i posted upthread about the charges laid against the Christchurch killer. That came from the NPR.


          maybe the population is still expected to discuss the events of Sansa declaring independence on the wellbeing of the people of winterfell and westero? 


  6. mac1 6

    History is littered with failed predictions.

    These include mine that the National Party will split into two paries. It has not yet happened but after I heard Simon Bridges make a terrible after dinner speech at the recently concluded Grey Power AGM in Wellington, I'd say that prediction moved forward quite a bit.

    Suffice it to say that he misread his audience, misread the purpose and content matter of an after dinner speech, and suffered the fate of being hugely party political in a elction rally mode and suffered the concomitant behaviour from many attendees of expressions of disbelief, laughter, and later some very tough questioning that was mercifully for him foreshortened by the chairman.

    My final summation for Simon Bridge's performance that Tuesday night was 'desperation'.

    • Adrian Thornton 6.1

      Damn, I would have loved to watch that one..a bit mean of me, yes, but I make no apologies, it's like watching the baddies get theirs at the end of a bad movie, at lest you walk away with that little satisfaction.

      • mac1 6.1.1

        On the other hand, the PM came and was very unparty political. I am not sure even whether the opposition got mentioned. She was open and warm, and dealt well with a couple of 'tough' questions. One about the Aged Persons Commissioner was dealt with by saying that while such a commissioner was not yet appointed, the reasons why a commissioner would be needed would also need to be addressed.

        I understood he to say that it was not enough just to tick the box of a complaints process commissioner but more important to address the problems now, which had been or were to be addressed in the Wellbeing Budget and in ongoing government action.

        The other person to really feel the heat was the Kiwibank speaker who could not  adequately defend or explain the withdrawal of services by office closure and of  cheque facilities. 

        If there was one good lesson from those exchanges was that 750,000 superannuitants  and increasing to a million within a decade should not be written off as a political force, or as consumers of lamingtons, or as 'Dad's Arny" as we were regarded by the previous government. Insults are not easily  or always forgiven, but they are never forgotten.


    • bwaghorn 6.2

      That's what happens when you dont stand for anything other than trying to win.

  7. A 7


    5G dangers are being spoken about more widely – but hardly a murmur in NZ.

    The Telecom Industry has admitted there are no studies that show 5G wireless technology is safe. Since 2017 200+ doctors and scientists have demanded a moratorium on installation due to research that has already proven it’s harmful.

  8. Adrian Thornton 8

    Labouring Under Antisemitism

    Norman Finkelstein on antisemitism in the UK and Labour/Corbyn.

    And yes calls bullshit on that….

    • AB 8.1

      It's a tough lesson to get you head around – but just about everybody who is comfortable materially or ideologically with the current status quo, will break in the direction of fascism when they feel genuinely threatened. Even if that perception of threat comes in the form of someone as harmless as Corbyn.

      • Adrian Thornton 8.1.1

        Yes they definitely break right under pressure, I am pretty sure most new labour blairites and the editorial staff at the Guardian would rather see the Tories back in power than Corbyn as Prime Minister, the same goes for Nancy Pelosi and the establishment DNC, re;Sanders 2020.

  9. Nick 10

    To have people like P benefit and collins wail about bullying is a cynical joke. That natz lot really are among the rock bottom of NZ society. 

    • Anne 10.1

      'P benefit' overplayed her cards yesterday. She prattled on breathlessly about women being frightened, feeling sick and scared to come to work cos:

      "there's a predator in parliament and nobody knows who it is cos the awful Trevor Mallard won't tell us". (a tongue in cheek precis)

      The reality: a person was identified who has preyed upon three women since 2014 (or thereabouts) and perhaps more cases will come to light, but not even a serial predator is going to roam the corridors of power grabbing unsuspecting women on the day his past behaviour had just been exposed for all to see.

      • gsays 10.1.1

        I found an insincerity in her recent comments after hearing her 'off the record' during the JLR fiasco.


    • Fireblade 10.2

      Has Peter Godfather released the National Party culture report yet?

      • Incognito 10.2.1

        Has Simon Bridges read it yet?

        • Rapunzel

          Of course he has. This may be wide of the mark but according to Newsroom M. Barry has been, or has herseelf, moved on from leading another select committee in the form of the foreign interference in NZ inquiry after a poor performance on the euthanasia Bill were she often it is ignored or dismissed views opposed to her own, she may not have been "leader" of that but she seems determined to impress her points of view over most of the things she touches. 

          The timing seems to me interesting that she is being replaced by Chris Bishop at a time the rumours are rife of the way staff have been managed, my impression is she is lying low in yet another of the forms of that that suit her so well.

          • Anne

            … she is being replaced by Chris Bishop at a time the rumours are rife of the way staff have been managed, my impression is she is lying low…

            I think you might be on to something there. Maggie's bill-boards which normally festoon the Takapuna/Devonport region (at the least) throughout the parliamentary term have disappeared again.

            • Rapunzel

              I would love to know the "detail" and NZ and that electorate deserve to know it, I can't see the media, even such as it is, leaving it alone for long as far as the inquiry goes but past behaviour looks to mean that other stuff will be swept under the mat again. If it's really bad my reckon is she will "retire" quietly pre-election.

              • Sabine

                i have a friend who works for the department and that friend has got nothing good to say about the dear Minister. Nothing. not one flower to give. 

                i agree we will most likely never know just how mean spirited and bullying she was .

  10. joe90 11

      Fiscal Responsibility.

    • Sabine 11.1

      a grifter is gonna grift. 

      they voted for the shitshow and voting has consequences. 

      • greywarshark 11.1.1

        The Trumpian Wall.   One of the Wonders of the World.   What unintended consequences will it have – I suggest many.   

        The word harmonics came to mind as I looked at the image.    The sort of regular noise that you get from running alongside a fence with a stick – what effect does that have?   Can the Wall be fully policed?  Can annoyers set up devices at untended portions, keeping guards rushing up and down or involving interaction with spy drones.   Sounds like an interesting activity for people whose economic conditions have been badly affected by USA machinations.  If it is electrified, could great effects be caused by a simple stone in a sling – a reprise of David and Goliath.    Could harmonics be set up that would carry through the structure for kilometres?    What about the animals living nearby?  What effect will it have on them?    Will the USA weaponise cruising hawks so they can watch over it yet be under covers – an oxymoron!

        Some fuel for the scientific minded which may or may not be relevant:   http://spacegass.com/harmonic/index.htm

        (This link might apply to the Christchurch building which there is 'stress' about between engineer-designer and engineer-certifier at  Christchurch City Council.)    I bet Trump doesn't know much about harmonics except the timbre of his own voice!     https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fbuil.2017.00057/full

        Edit: Trump…voice…arcapella…facing the music on his own….When, oh Lord when?

        • Sabine

          When the republican party under Mitch McConnell does not need the usefull idiot anymore to sign laws and rally the masses and not a moment before. 

          this wall is going to kill a lot of people, animals, fuck the rio grande but than the orange shitshow is old and when history comes to judge he will be a rotten corpse somewhere. 

    • Incognito 11.2

      Would have been cheaper with imported steel from China.

    • Sabine 12.1

      well there was a guy once up on a time who ran on repealing regulations, bringing back coal and making the country great again. File this under the 'country is great again'. 

    • RedLogix 12.2

      This is the kind of thing that is genuinely infuriating about the Trump regime. All the other shit about Russia and tax returns may or may not have merit, but are ultimately distractions from what is important.

      Working in Panama it is utterly disheartening to walk along beaches literally ankle deep in plastic. And this was a site that was regularly cleaned up!

      Good link mosa.

  11. alwyn 13

    Trevor Mallard is certainly doing very well with his distraction tactics. A major report says that bullying is prevalent in Parliament. Trevor starts talking about a rapist probably being in Parliament, and then announces that a person has been suspended from their job. The idiots in our MSM then go into paroxysms of excitement and start talking only about sexual offences and totally ignores the bulk of the report which is about bullying.

    Given the reported high turnover in some Ministerial Offices, and particularly in that of the Prime Minister's Press Secretaries, it would seem that there has been bullying going on there. High turnover of staff is often a telltale sign of a bullying culture as people working in Offices like that leave rather than put up with it.

    Is Trevor merely running his usual interference tactics, as he routinely does at Question Time to protect his boss? Would discussion of bullying instead of sexual offences be a bit too close to home?

    • Rapunzel 13.1

      Many more people will be watching their "Ps & Qs" I imagine and I suppose one thing it distracts from, which is in the Opposition's favour, is that, for the moment, people have stopped asking where the National inquiry release on its internal findings is.

      • Anne 13.1.1

        In the light of recent events it's being re-written.

        • alwyn

          Work for the National Party do you Anne? How else would you possibly know to make such a claim?

          • Anne

            Oh dear alwyn, I should have left an emoticon for your benefit. I thought my light hearted cynicism/sarcasm (call it what you will)  would be apparent for all to see.

    • Sabine 13.2

      what happened to the inquiry into the toxic culture of the national party that involves , the Jami Lee Ross Saga? 

      Oh, nothing you say?  Sure, lets blame Trevor Mallard for something something anything gazpacho with grated cheese. 

      • alwyn 13.2.1

        I have no idea what any such inquiry may have said.

        Why don't you ask Bridges, rather than me. I have nothing at all to do with the National Party.

        Meanwhile I see, from Stuff, that there were 3 complaints of sexual harassment, involving 4 women and 2 men between 2015 and 2018 while there have been a dozen people in the first 3 months of this year alone, who resigned because of bullying. Staff turnover has doubled since this lot became the Government compared to the last year of the previous Government. Trevor really is trying to cover up his own failures isn't he?

        Shouldn't we be worrying about the most common problem rather than just worry about Trevor's side-tracking to the much less common event?

    • ankerawshark 13.3

      alywin trolling again.  don't respond.

  12. joe90 14

    But milkshakes could escalate, mkay.

    The Proud Boys want the public to believe that they’re a “drinking club” who only resort to violence to defend themselves from anti-fascist protesters during political rallies.

    But in private, these extremists have discussed injuring and even killing their adversaries, plotting tactics and optics for months in order to assert a claim of self-defense should they face charges.


    But private chat logs leaked to HuffPost fly directly in the face of that sentiment, showing Proud Boys premeditating violence they hope to commit. They spent months before the April rally meticulously planning strategies for injuring protesters.

    Members discuss what weapons they might use against the “commies” they’ll meet in the street, which police officers might be sympathetic to them, how they’ll raise funding to fly out their long-distance compatriots, and how they’ll “bait” protesters into throwing the first punch so that they can claim self-defense.


  13. Sabine 15

    I have no idea what any such inquiry may have said.

    its because the national party is keeping it well under wraps, while the current investigation has already led to one staffer going the way of hte dodo, or the moa. 

    so frankly i find this pissing contest tired, and the Nationalasitas issues with trevord mallard are just boring. 

    go ask you guys without mates about their own toxic culture of hair pulling, doxxing beneficiaries to the media for personal gain, and cutting funds to help abuse survivors receive a place of safety (womens refugee), counceling (ACC and lifeline) and then you might have a point in whinging about trevor mallard. 

    as for my view on this whole shitty story, its as NZ as it gets, and as always with sexual assault, sexual harassment and rape i expect nothing, cause in the twenty odd years i have lived here that is what is done about, nothing.  And i stated that on the appropriate thread. 

  14. The Chairman 16

    The People’s Budget

    Host: Bryan Bruce with co-host The Daily Blog’s Martyn (Bomber) Bradbury with panelists :

    Law Professor and Free Trade critic, Professor Jane Kelsey

    Economist and commentator Rod Oram

    Head of Greenpeace, Russel Norman

    Former Green MP, Sue Bradford

    Julia Amua Whaipooti – JustSpeak Board member. Senior advisor at the Office of the Children’s Commissioner and member of the Criminal Justice Advisory Group

    Auckland City Councillor Efeso Collins


  15. greywarshark 17

    Is this exciting?   I don't dare to hope, so someone can critique it so we know.

    But   – Government to loosen its debt target rules  Thursday 5/23/2019      11 am ish

    The government's planning to loosen its net debt target, which would allow it to be more flexible and take on more debt to fund investments.

    Finance Minister Grant Robertson has announced that from the 2021/22 year, the government is likely to target a net debt range of between 15 and 25 percent of GDP.

    At the moment, the government's self-imposed Budget Responsibility Rules require it to hold net debt of no more than 20 percent of GDP by 2022, which is low by international standards.

    That has been criticised by supporters as restricting the government from investing meaningfully in the country.


    • Sam 17.1

      Pfft. Some where in rural New Zealand the former minister of everything is muttering about an $11 billion fiscal hole that never arrived. 

    • The Chairman 17.2

      Interesting. This report (in the link below) was indicating a range of 15% – 20% 


      Which, of course, implies potentially further reducing debt, thus spending.

      However, if your report is correct, it seems the Government have opted to leave it open to go either way – i.e either take on more debt, thus be able to spend more, or spend less and slash debt. Appealing to both the hopes of the conservative and those that want Government to loosen the purse strings.

      I see the opposition are trying to paint it as a loosening. But it could also be seen as a tightening if the Government opt to cut debt below 20%.

      • Sam 17.2.1

        huh? Why anyone would pursue deflationary policies in an inflationary environment is beyond me. 

        • The Chairman

          They haven't stated what they plan to pursue as it seems they plan to leave it open.

          • Sam

            Well the rule of thumb is the longer the delay in taking a fiscal direction the greater the fiscal stimulus required.

            • The Chairman

              Similar can be said about their welfare investment. The less they invest now, the greater it will cost going forward. 

              • Sam

                Beneficiaries can still be compensated for a reconstructed tax, education and health systems.

                Edit: forget to mention Housing New Zealand. You’d want poor people to use them.

      • SPC 17.2.2

        The 15-25% target is based on advice fromTreasury. 

        So there is nothing indicative about government policy intent, despite the hopes of many Labour supporters or the doomsaying of National. 

        It's a bit like the inflation bands going from 0-2 to 1-3%, and inflation being lower afterwards. 

        IMO its Tresury arguing for a lower debt target of 15% if the good times continue and a limit to any expansionary policy to the 25% level because of looming baby boomer demographic issues. 

        • The Chairman

          IMO its Tresury arguing for a lower debt target of 15% if the good times continue… 

          Seems so. And it seems the Government largely agrees.

          Considering the Minister's comments, adopting a range of between 15 percent and 25 percent opposed to the current set target of 20% does suggest that despite all the stated crisis (housing, education, health, etc) in the current economic climate (which they deem as good) the Government will most likely move to further reduce debt.

  16. adam 18

    I know NZ sold it's gold reserves – ideological purity and all that. 


    Has it ever brought it back? Tried google and got this



    • alwyn 18.1

      Why on earth do you want New Zealand to own lots of gold? It is basically useless unless you want to own jewelry or make electronic equipment. Or, I suppose, make an Apollo moon-lander or decorate buildings like the Paris Opera House.

      What do you think would happen if all the gold in Fort Knox, or the even larger (by about 50%) pile at the New York Federal Reserve, was to vanish and nobody knew?

      Well nothing, absolutely nothing. Of course the villains in the 007 film Goldfinger or the ones in Die Hard with a Vengeance would look a bit silly but until they discovered there was nothing there the world would be totally unaffected. It is a barborous relic and, as William Jenning Bryan put it  "You shall not crucify mankind upon a cross of gold".

      • McFlock 18.1.1

        Well, duh. If nobody knows it happened, nothing effects the economy. Economics is about belief. To flip it around, what if everybody falsely believed all the US gold reserves had been stolen?

        Suddenly the USG is treated as if it lost $300bil in assets.

        • alwyn

          Very good. You read right through what I wrote. Amazing. I didn't really think you could concentrate for that long.

  17. bwaghorn 19

    Does anyone know why farmers are not allowed to offset the Methane emmisions by planting trees . ??

    • BM 19.1

      Q: But can't farmers just plant trees to offset methane?
      A: No. The Government has specifically prevented farmers from offsetting methane emissions. A coal power station will be allowed to offset its greenhouse gas emissions by buying up farms and planting pine trees but a farmer will not be allowed to offset their methane emissions by planting trees on their own land.

      This is contradictory to the recent recommendations by the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment, who recommended a landscape approach to forestry offsets.

      Under the PCE's landscape approach the use of forestry offsets would be limited to biological methane, and offsetting nitrous oxide would be limited to native vegetation, and fossil carbon dioxide would not be offset at all by planting trees.

      The Government's Zero Carbon Bill announcement makes no distinction between fossil and biological greenhouse gases and operates in a reality where a carbon atom is as theoretically stable in a pine tree in Nelson as one in solid coal a kilometre under the ground.

      Q: How can farmers reduce their emissions in order to reach the methane target?
      A: Currently the only way livestock farmers can significantly reduce methane emissions is to feed less dry matter to livestock.

      The Biological Emissions Reference Group (BERG) commissioned work that shows in order to significantly reduce livestock methane emissions in the future without cutting production many currently unavailable and uncertain technologies will need to be developed and commercialised.


      My guess is that this government wants to see fewer farms or herds drastically reduced in size.

      They don't want to give Farmers the ability to maintain the status quo, which they could probably do by planting trees.





      • Sabine 19.1.1

        Question, in order to offset methane emissions now could farmers not just simply stop cutting down every single tree in their sight in order to load some more cows on the paddock? 

        Seriously  can you BM or BWaghorn give an answer to that? Or is it a question of money rather then environmental consience? 


        And why are Farmers cutting down every tree, every shrub without regards to anything? 

        I mean I live on the country side now, and i swear to god that there are more birds in evil Auckland then on any of the paddocks that surround my quaint little rural town, and no cats are in sight? 

        • Sam

          It's more that technology has to keep pace with the change. Farming-labour don't require much in the way of qualifications where the carbon economy does require higher qualifications for things like finance and electrical engineering basically replacing physical labour with intellectual labour. And what that might mean for the physical make up of the rural town. Change like this has to bring the people along with it.

          • Sabine

            i am not a farmer, but i just planed two trees last week and i am planning on putting up a few more trees next weekend. In fact when i am done i have hopefully planted a little grove. 🙂 

        • BM

          I'm not a farmer or had anything to do with the rural community so bwaghorn could probably give you a bit more insight into the mindset of the average farmer.

          One thing I would say is the high stocking rates are being driven by the high cost of land.

          Expensive land = big mortgage = higher stocking rates to pay for the mortgage.



          • Poission

            The solution for land cost is simple.

            Prohibit sales of land to foreign buyers. 

          • Sam

            Plus the government has a BILLION tree strategy. So they can't really nitpick about small one off tree planting subdivisions when what the government really needs are big blocks of converted land. So planning is just going to have to take big leaps forward, far beyond that of The National Party, unfortunately. 

          • bwaghorn

            I cant  be bothered answering sabine . Turning a simple question into a opportunity to rant turns me off.

            Thanks for the above link .
            It sounds like it’s for ideological reasons. Which is a shame

            • Sabine

              It actually is not. 

              Question, why can't they plant trees now. 

              Question, why do they have to cut all the trees, and then remove every stump and root, when we now that the cows actually like a bit of shade, and the tree roots are good for the soil .

              this has got nothing to do with the link on why farmers can't offset their tree planting for methane gas emission as that would apply that farmers will only plant trees when there is a quid pro quo in the same sense that they remove all trees for quid pro quo.

              Fact is that the current drought (yes we are in a drought) will affect farmers. 

              The loos of wildlife, birds, the drying out of our soil, all affects Farmers.


              So please BWaghorn, be bothered and answer my question, because i can't understand it. 

              This Farmer here i understand as he clearly thinks with his bank account in mind and at the same time he is future proofing his business and his farm. 


              So please, my question was not sarcastic or anything, I really don't understand and i personally don't understand how anyone can find beauty, resiliance, and future prospect in the bleak landscape that we are creating in order to grow cows, to produce milk powder  – which is not even a good steady income earner. I don't understand it. 

              Please enlighten me. 

              • bwaghorn

                Farmers are just like all humans . Some a clever and give a fuck . Some are either thick or ignorant . Your neighbors fit that group by the sound of it  

                But I gaurentee it that if faced with the option of paying a methane tax or planting trees your thick/ignorant niagbours would plant trees.

            • Pat

              The reason given by Shaw was if farmers wished to treat methane emissions as different to carbon as their submissions claimed then the accepted practice of offsetting carbon by tree planting could not apply as trees dont absorb methane

      • Stuart Munro. 19.1.2

        No doubt some Treasury advisor put the kibosh on it – the idea being that GDP is maximized if farmable land gets farmed, and marginal gets forested. The idea that it might force someone out never sways the bean counters – which is why so much policy over the last few decades has been so wretched.

      • Robert Guyton 19.1.3

        "They don't want to give Farmers the ability to maintain the status quo"

        Seems wise.

    • Sacha 19.2

      “Does anyone know why farmers are not allowed to offset the Methane emmisions by planting trees?”

      Because trees do not remove methane from the atmosphere?

  18. joe90 20

    The bloke who said he'd don khaki, pick up a rifle and head for the front lines hid from milkshake wielding marauders.

    Nigel Farage reportedly got stuck on his Brexit Party campaign bus after people armed with milkshakes surrounded him.

    The politician is said to have refused to leave the vehicle just days after he was covered in banana and salted caramel milkshake in Newcastle



  19. UncookedSelachimorpha 21

    Support the Farmer's staff on strike for a Living Wage today!


    Meanwhile (surprise surprise), the owner of Farmers, James Pascoe Group, generated $2b in revenue in 2011 (profit and more recent figures unknown – they are privately held). The family that owns them reportedly had personal wealth of $500m in 2013. But they can't pay their staff enough for basic living!

    • greywarshark 21.1

      You're cooking with gas Sela.    Is that appropriate in these Green days?

  20. joe90 22

    Important stuff.

  21. joe90 23

     Coincidences, coincidences…

    With his relationship with Deutsche Bank under increasing scrutiny, President Donald Trump, in a move not previously reported, has recently shifted some of his banking business from this global institution to a small and relatively new bank in South Florida. As Democrats in Congress have requested information from Deutsche Bank about its dealings with Trump—the firm has loaned him billions over the years—he appears to have closed his brokerage accounts with the German company and has deposited millions of dollars in the Coral Gables–based Professional Bank, which last year gave Trump an eight-figure loan to buy a property adjacent to his private club Mar-a-Lago.


    In January, in what may be a sign of the bank’s rising profile, the firm’s president and CEO, Abel Iglesias, was appointed to the board of directors for the Miami branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.


  22. Sabine 24

    this is normal, totally normal, move a long, nothing to see here 



    Torrential rains, thunderstorms and tornados struck Oklahoma, Kansas and Texas Monday, but the rains in Oklahoma caused the North Canadian River to crest in parts of El Reno. But it was the Cimarron River that took out one family’s home.




    so normal. so very very normal. 

  23. SPC 25

    Only a few more months to Brexit on Park Lane 111. 

    A Tory PM meeting Donald J Trump to negotiate a FTA to save the island from its hubris and these words are spoken – you'll sign here, nothing to negotiate, these are my terms, you have no other options, surrender to me, consider your island colonised. 

    And afterwards.

    I came, I saw, I conquered. I was so smart and they were so dumb. Victory in my time.

  24. OnceWasTim 26

    Funny as a fart in a Caci Clinic lift really isn't it (sorry to be base). Coalition NZ launched with Hannah at the helm. (Btw, has anyone else noticed the similaritoise between Hannah and Paula going forward? And then Saint Jude riding valiantly alongside it all as some sort of Saviour of the 'Centre Right").Then there's that pathetic creature Preacher Alfred with an ego the size of a bus -all of them with egos the size of a bus jostling for position).

    Cargo Cults have returned and Parliamentary Gang territorial warfare  has arrived

    • greywarshark 26.1

      Yes thought that the makeover person/s for Poorer Benefit and Hamma Tamaki has done a great job.   The two haven't had to suffer any of Michael Jackson's problems I think.     People should be considered in  their opinions.      If the po-faced in USA can elect Trump, then who knows what will arise here, and may receive a warm welcome.

  25. Poission 27

    China confirmed as unlawful emitter of CFC.


    It will be interesting what the response from both the parties to the MP an the UNEP will be.



    • greywarshark 27.1

      China may point to its pollution-limiting actions, and ask for extra time.

      But a slowdown with USA would help to settle pollution down, it could help to establish a new lower, norm.

    • indiana 27.2

      I wonder how many Chinese students will skip school to protest about climate change?

      • greywarshark 27.2.1

        The people in China haven't been able to organise for popular protest for some time I think.   Anyone who knows different please inform.

        But Poission noted that there is unsettling news about a nasty banned CFC having been traced to China.    Is that factual or propaganda.    It would be good if countries could be very transparent about such things and
        submit to UN inspection. I hate the very thought but I think of WMD and all that followed that.

        The USA have expropriated a North Korean vessel for doing something wrong and breaking the freaking sanctions. I wish they would look after their own affairs, and do something about their trillion dollar debit which must be having a big affect on the world’s financial stability. That could even be regarded as a WMD.)

        There is an image with this item that shows an orange cloud spreading over part of the globe.   I think it is around China, but there is probably an invisible one coming from the USA.    Why can't these countries follow careful and reasonable policies, and from such a height they could criticise others fairly.

  26. Muttonbird 28

    Simon Bridges has racked up the stiffest bill for chauffeur-driven cars so far in 2019, the latest MPs’ expenses report shows.

    Slow learner Simon. Loves the perks of the job doesn't he?

    In total, $1,457,574 was spent for MPs’ travel and accommodation in the first quarter of this year, January to March. It breaks down to $914,232 for the National Party, $388,907 for Labour, $63,724 for the Greens, $59,808 for New Zealand First, $18,787 for Act’s David Seymour, and $12,115 for the now independent Ross.

    And why is the National party spending more than twice Labour on travel and accomodation? I guess guess fiscal responsibility is for other people…


    • alwyn 28.1

      The link you provide does not work. I shall comment based on the information on the Parliamentary website at


      Did you not notice that the numbers reported do not include any of the Ministers? Do you really think it was because they didn't spend anything at all?

      They are financed from a separate budget for Ministerial Services and are reported at a later date. Thus these numbers include ALL the National MPs but only the junior dregs from the Labaour, NZF and Green parties. In the NZF case that is only 3 out of 8 members. It is hardly surprising that the reported numbers for National are so much higher than the totals for about half the Government parties is it?

      And did you see the note 2 at the bottom. The only MPs who aren't in the Ministerial ranks who get the VIP transport are the Speaker, Deputy Speaker and the Leader of the Opposition. It is also charged out at a much higher rate ($171/hr) than are Ministers ($68/hr) That was something our current Government introduced I believe. God knows why, unless it was to try and make the Leader of the Opposition look bad. I am surprised that the smear works but you obviously fell for it.

      Wait till the Minister's expenses come out. Unless you really are a hypocrite I suppose you will then rant at the extravagance of the Government who spent a fortune while National will have spent precisely nothing.

      Still, apparently you really must be as silly as you appear. I guess you really that foolish as to not have noticed the things I have pointed out.

      • Muttonbird 28.1.1

        Fascinating. It looks like the National party got their friends at the Herald to remove the story.

        You have to admit that blowing nearly $1M of our hard earned money in just three months makes National look not only wasteful but reckless in their spending – not a good look for a party which is auditioning for government.

        You can defend them all you want but the public don't like seeing Simon Bridges lord it in limousines after being caught wasting taxpayers money on them just last year.

        Why won't Simon Bridges learn?

        • higherstandard

          "Why won't Simon Bridges learn?"

          Perhaps, like yourself, he's a dimwit.

          • Muttonbird

            That's two RWNJs in a row who have resorted to personal abuse.

            You can do better.

            I’m interested about the removal of the article though. From memory it didn’t mention Minister’s expenses were not included, just those of JA and Peters (we’ll never know now because it’s been disappeared).

            alwyn has helpfully pointed this out but surely the article could have been updated. Why remove it altogether? Perhaps the Herald, under pressure from the National Party, conceded it was too damaging to the opposition…

            • alwyn

              You would certainly know all about personal abuse. You revel in it don't you? Pretty typical of LWNJs such as you though.

              Perhaps the Herald, like you, really thought that they had produced a zinger to wack National with. Their reporters do lean, like you, way over to the left. So far in fact that they, also like you,fall on their faces regularly.

              They on the other hand might have realised that they had totally stuffed it up and were embarrassed enough to remove it. You have no such shame. In fact you seem to be proud of your foolishness. I despair of the school system we seem to have ended up with if you are a typical outcome. 

              • alwyn

                If that was the table that The Herald published it is a repeat of the one I linked to from the Parliamentary website. It would seem very hard to understand how Muttonbird didn't notice all the people in the Government Parties who appeared to have spent absolutely nothing.

                Ardern – nothing? Peters – nothing? Every other Minister- nothing?

                Did nothing register as being just slightly funny in Muttonbird's mind? Well apparently not. Oh dear, some mothers do ave 'em.

              • Muttonbird

                Thank you, but that is not the article I read which has now disappeared from the Herald website. That particular article did not include a list of member's expenses on Scribd uploaded by "Anonymous jlKATDoSIW".

                I wonder who Anonymous jlKATDoSIW is?

                Perhaps that person works in the office of the leader of the opposition?

                Perhaps that person runs a right wing blog popular with islamophobes?

                Also, I commented at 4:19pm and Collette Devlin's more National Party friendly piece on Stuff was published at 7:30pm.

                Anyway, the now removed Herald article wasn't the only one up at the time – there was another headline on one of the other sites referring to Simon Bridges as, "King of Limos". 😂

                Sadly, it too has disappeared.

                • alwyn

                  And perhaps, as I said, they simply copied the material of the Parliamentary web-site I referenced in my first comment at 28.1. And no,I really don't think the official Parliamentary web-site has been taken over by aliens.

                  Do you ever read the things people reference? And are you sure about what you claim to have seen on the Herald web-site? You seem to be the only one who ever saw it. You really do seem to be getting delusional.

                  • Muttonbird

                    I have quoted from that article so yes, I'm sure it existed. Unless you're saying I made it up?

                    • alwyn

                      I believe that you may have read the Herald article you quoted. It was the other one that I wonder about because Google doesn't find anything at all like it.

                      The Herald one gives a link from a google search that includes this quote "21 hours ago – Simon Bridges has racked up the stiffest bill for chauffeur-driven cars so far in 2019, the latest MPsexpenses report shows. National Party boss …".

                      I suspect that my supposition in was right. Some idiot reporter, trying to wack Bridges, did write a story from the MP expenses and was simply too stupid to notice that there were no reported expenses at all for the Ministers. Finally some one with just a little bit of sense saw it and hurriedly spiked it.

                      It would have got into print, or on the internet at least, because their reporters these days are pretty dumb and they don't have any sub-editors any more. How they could write such a thing without even wondering why there were no reported numbers for Ministers and that only Bridges and Tolley appeared to have access to the Limos is totally beyond me.

                      Still, when it comes to the intelligence of the LWNJ reporters on the MSM in New Zealand nothing is too foolish for them to say. They don't get an education anymore. They just go to some left-wing propaganda school like the night school in Hamilton they pretend is a University and learn the right jargon and who they are to moan about.

                      To paraphrase H L Mencken

                      “No one ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the   New Zealand Journalists'.” 

            • JohnSelway

              I don't think you are in a position to call anyone out for personal abuse, Muttonbird

      • Sabine 28.1.2

        and still they raked up over 900.000 out of 1.5 (rounded) million. 

        that means that the party of the opposition  cost the country 2/3 (roughly 🙂 ) of all spending costs. 

        but yeah…..surely it must not be true, cause reasons. right? 



        • alwyn

          Seems to be pretty much what I would expect. The Opposition are about half of the Parliament. Of the Government about half are Ministers or suchlike and aren't included in these figures at all. Thus you would expect that there are about twice as many MPs from the Opposition as from the Government whose expenses are paid from this budget.

          Hence you would expect that 2/3 of the expenses reported here were for Opposition MPs. Simple Arithmetic isn't it? Did they teach Arithmetic when you were at school?

          It isn't 2/3 of ALL spending costs of course. Wait till they release the numbers for the Ministers and we see how much travel James Shaw has been doing this quarter. In the previous one he, a professed aircraft hating Greenie, topped the entire list for International travel. More that the PM. More than the Minister of Foreign Affairs. More than the Minister of Trade. He was number 1. So much for worrying about Carbon emissions.

          But it is all to much for you to understand isn't it?

          Give it up Sabine. Trying to defend Muttonbird in his stupidity just make you look equally as ignorant. It isn't worth it.

  27. greywarshark 29

    Spending on expensive medicines to give a longer period of capability when having a terminal illness.   There are more and more demands on the government, often by people who actually are very individualistic, have never co-operated with a true community-based local or national government.    It is time for some practical limitations.   

    I have noted a couple with genetic differences from the norm, have two dwarf children and be considering another pregnancy.    The children have needed medical intervention throughout their early years.

    There has to be a decent and proper way to treat terminally ill.    They could perhaps be allocated an expensive drug for a year so they could have special time with their family, but then the care is management and pain and there should be no more babies in that time.   Perhaps an injection of long-lasting hormones for women.   And men must not start more children if they have a genetic mutation.

    The demands from people with cancer are shrill.    It is hard when you are young, and I wonder why so many younger people seem to be suffering.  Do government know that hair dyes and so on may be carcinogenic, and I believe are not controlled the same as cosmetics are.   It maybe that there will have to be a cap put on different diseases – so much to cancer, so much to heart?   And a firefighter who has contracted lung disease going into dangerous conditions to save people, homes, workplaces, animals; people suffering from their work conditions should receive priority care, it seems fair.  

    And also the hoary issue of old people.    We once died often before 40, then it got to 75, now it is in the 80s, and how much older with demands for spare parts and intricate surgery, and what return does that person give to the country offering these extra years – what grateful input back for the kindly care?

    We cannot afford to treat children and workers so that they can keep healthy and have a normal life.    We certainly can't afford to pay out too much to give terminally ill people all the life that they would like.   But a kind and practical health system would set up a model that would provide a way to help dying people fairly and appropriately.    Many people have complained of the shortcomings when they are near end of life when they deserve some TLC from a modern civilised nation.


    [Pharmac CEO Sarah] Fitt concedes that New Zealand does not offer as many medicines as other countries but claims that Pharmac is smarter. "Funding more medicines doesn't necessarily improve health outcomes. You could find five medicines in the same class that are very similar, you might only need to fund one or two. And that's the strategy that we take."

    Is she saying New Zealand knows something other nations don't, and that they are wasting money on these drugs? "Well, that was certainly one of our conclusions when we looked at the comparison with Australia that we did a couple of years ago. You could be spending a lot more money but actually not gaining a lot of additional health outcomes."

    When it comes to lung cancer, she says patients often present at a late stage of the disease. "Treatment for cancer isn't all about medicines. It's about screening. The most effective things to manage cancer are screening, diagnosis, radiotherapy and surgery. Medicines make up about 8-10 percent of cancer control."

    But Chris Atkinson, an oncologist and the medical director of the Lung Foundation, says many of these new precision cancer medicines are showing remarkable results. While the drugs won't cure them, they are buying them time.

    "Every day I'm involved in the care of patients who are giving me cheek two or three years down the track, who presented with disease widely spread from the primary cancer. When you repeat the imaging in response to some of these drugs that are self-funded they don't have any imagable, active cancer."


    • McFlock 29.1

      Thinking about your "parents with genetic mutation" example, I'm uncertain about any of the options to prevent further children. Yes, they should, but requiring LARC/LAC to stop further children with genetic disorders is dangerous ground.

      It just feels very eugenic-y, even though it's not really.

      The pharmac CEO probably isn't too far off, IMO. I suspect pharmac is underfunded (which is easier to hide because its expenditure meets its budget, as there's always unmet medical need, just with diminishing returns), but the pricey drugs probably aren't the best way to make life easier for NZers at a population level.

      I reckon any change-producing increase for pharmac should go to lowering or eliminating the $5/drug charge for subsidised prescriptions. Anyone with a complex situation could well end up dropping $40/prescription or much more – try doing that on a limited income.

      • higherstandard 29.1.1

        Rx fees are capped at 20 items in a calendar year for families/individuals.

        The PHARMAC CEO is a mendacious public servant which seems to be the case with many ex medical/pharmacy staff who work there.

        • McFlock

          Capped fees? That's nice.

          Of course, it still requires someone to come up with $100 up front, but I doubt you could conceive how that would be a difficulty for people, a barrier to them getting the drugs they need when the doctor proescribes them.

          • higherstandard


            For children under 14, the prescription items are free.

            If you have a Community Services Card, you'll pay a small fee for funded pharmaceuticals and still qualify for the 20 items pre year max before all comes free.

            Alternatively go to chemist warehouse who have a nil Rx fee for subsidised pharmaceuticals coming to a town near you soon.

            • McFlock

              And yet the research says the costs are still too high for some people.

      • greywarshark 29.1.2


        The future requires our reasoning.    Nothing happening now or in the future is like what has happened before.    I don't want us to do nothing until we have to which by then is too late.   We need to be talking about the problems as involved citizens.   People can then understand the issues, take responsibility and work in with government, or if they decide not, know there will be a limit on services. Everything in our world is shrinking, except individual desires.   So it is necessary to point out some hard facts – there's no free lunch.   We're all in this together – B. Franklin;  We must all hang together, or we surely will hang separately.

        And the pharmacy cost – so true about cutting the cost for families and for others perhaps a flat fee for two or more for dispensing.

        I think it is unreasonable higherstandard to claim that Pharmac CEO is a 'mendacious public servant'.   The job of looking into the claims for medications and assessing reasonable cost for public supply is important and doesn't get you popularity.   A while ago I quoted a case where a private equity bought up a slow-demand drug that cost $16 say and the new owner put it up to $100 or more.  Your put down about Pharmac sounds like a little child who wants some goodie and when refused, says ‘You are a bad mummy/daddy.  

        I suggest government set up a website with scenarios and parameters that people can fill out and play at managing an agency, ie how do we manage the health budget where spending falls – with lists how it goes now – this does not result in fair treatment ie to rural, to poor children etc.  Then question how do you think we could manage this, and people could allocate and explain why it was fair to favour this group and lessen for that group.   And what should be spent on education to prevent some of the problems.    And why prevention can become obsessive and limit ordinary life, so no risks at all? 

        It would be a little like people playing Sim City. 





        • higherstandard

          "I think it is unreasonable higherstandard to claim that Pharmac CEO is a 'mendacious public servant'.   The job of looking into the claims for medications and assessing reasonable cost for public supply is important and doesn't get you popularity.   A while ago I quoted a case where a private equity bought up a slow-demand drug that cost $16 say and the new owner put it up to $100 or more.  Your put down about Pharmac sounds like a little child who wants some goodie and when refused, says ‘You are a bad mummy/daddy. "

          Cobblers !

          Clinician's in NZ are constantly in a situation where we have inferior access to medicines in comparisons to our colleagues overseas. A number of generic medicines which patients have been forced to change to have been poor in comparison to what was previously available, there are many supply shortages that pharmacists have to deal with on a daily basis. PHARMAC meanwhile sits on their collective dates telling half truths and at times outright lies when they should actively be pushing for an increase in their budget with a view to funding medicines rather than delaying matters while patients die.

          • McFlock

            So what system would you prefer?

            • higherstandard

              Similar to NICE in the UK or the PBAC in Australia wherein if a pharmaceutical intervention meets certain efficacy and value criteria it is funded and made available.

              • McFlock

                How does that differ from the way Pharmac decide which interventions to fund?

      • Puckish Rogue 29.1.3

        "parents with genetic mutation"


        Fingers crossed I get super powers!

  28. Pete 30

    At the end of Question Time today Chris Hipkins moved that Amy Adams be on the Intelligence and Security Committee.

    Funny that that was about an hour after Adams showed with her questioning of Grant Robertson, that she and intelligence had yet to meet.

  29. joe90 32


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