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Open mike 23/11/2021

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, November 23rd, 2021 - 93 comments
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93 comments on “Open mike 23/11/2021 ”

  1. Gezza 1

    Any had core fans of my bird friends may recall my previous posting of a gif of a visiting Muscovy Duck – not very imaginatively named “Muscovy” by me:

    Occasionally in the mornings I like to go for a short drive & check out what’s going on in the hood. In doing so recently I discovered that Muscovy & his mallard friends were now being regularly fed by some of the kind young occupants of a nearby newly-built housing estate complex, and also by some of the employees in a nearby computing business. ❤️👍🏼

    Swinging by there in the car yesterday morning I noticed that there is now a second Muscovy Duck on the scene:

    View post on imgur.com

    There’s obviously quite a bit of variation in the colouring of Muscovy ducks. Dunno if this one’s a female or another male. Pretty sure I read somewhere that the females are quite a bit smaller than males, & this one looks about the same size as “Muscovy” (who is plomped down on the grass to the left of the mallards seen in this clip).

    • Gezza 1.1

      🙄 * hard-core fans

      Wish I could sack my bloody useless proof-reader, but the bugger won’t move out of my head. ☹️

    • Gezza 1.2

      I love how the residents or the employees of the computing business have put this sign up warning drivers to take care when driving past…

  2. Jenny how to get there 2

    Won't anyone think of the markets?

    Austria goes back into full lockdown, makes vaccination compulsory from February

    20/11/2021 Reuters

    Austria will become the first country in western Europe to reimpose a full COVID-19 lockdown, it said on Friday as neighbouring Germany warned it may follow suit, sending shivers through financial markets worried about the economic fallout….


    Is this New Zealand's future?

    Maybe we should have stuck with elimination,

    • Gezza 2.1

      In some ways I wish that we had, but I doubt “elmination” was ever a viable long-term option once Delta arrived on the scene.

      • francesca 2.1.1

        More and more its apparent that the vaccine is not an end in itself .It's vaccine plus mask wearing plus sanitising and social distancing.I'd like to add rigorous test ,trace and treat ,which has worked so well overseas in the absence of widespread vaccination.

        We're not only at peak endgame capitalism, we're also at peak end game individualism, which makes public health mandates requiring us to change our habits nigh impossible.But I do think the elimination strategy is viable where you have a strong collective ethos.

        By the way, what's the story on beginning a sentence with "But".Is that bad grammar?

        • Gezza

          By the way, what’s the story on beginning a sentence with “But”.Is that bad grammar?

          I dunno whether it’s bad grammar per se or whether it was just a strong convention that one should NOT begin a sentence with a conjunction like but, or however.

          Some writers broke this convention anyway. Sometimes as a literary device to give an emphasis to the “but” or “however”, others just because they thought it just was too pedantic.

          I’m one who breaks the convention because I often try to write in conversational English & lotsa people in conversations begin sentences with “but” or “however”.

          • Blazer

            'So'….is in vogue atm.

          • francesca

            Thanks .

            I sometimes get told off for beginning a sentence with a gerund, there's correct usage and incorrect

            • mikesh

              A gerund is a 'verbal' noun so there is no reason a sentence shouldn't start with one. When Peter Pan says "Dying would be an awfully big adventure" the word "dying" is actually a gerund.

            • lprent

              Personally I only listen to my compilers about syntax- they have a reason to critise my syntax as computers are pretty damn stupid.

              People on the other hand seldom read what other people actually write. They are usually too busy inventing their own story about what they thought you wrote. That is why being clear about getting your meaning across is far more important than syntax.

              Only the people who are really trying to be computers because of their lack of any story telling abilities worry much about syntax.

              Pity them…

          • Ad

            I like big buts and I cannot lie.

            However …. however is a different matter.

          • Stuart Munro

            The rule is really stylistic, and we teach it to new writers, typically children, who might otherwise be tempted to begin every sentence after the first with and.

            As for its validity, it might be a rule of Latin copied into English, where it isn't true, as is the case with:

            Prepositions are not for ending sentences with. – fine in English, but apparently not in Latin.

            • mikesh

              Churchill, facetiously, once said "Up with this I will not put." However, this seems to be a special case since the verb he is intending to employ is "to put up with", not "to put". He seems to be using a poetical construction inappropriately. We would say “I will not put up with this”.

              In English we may use a construction like "The person I gave the book to", while the more formal construction would be "The person to whom I gave the book". In Latin, however "to whom" would be one word, using the dative case.

        • mikesh

          By the way, what's the story on beginning a sentence with "But".Is that bad grammar?

          Words like "but" and "and" are conjunctives. In other words they join two ideas within a sentence. Therefore, starting a sentence with either of them seems odd since one of the two ideas is missing. "So" is another such word but it is becoming common, in recent times, for politicians and media persons to start sentences with that word.

          • francesca

            I get it .I have a tendency to break up a long sentence into 2 separate ones.

            Well explained.

          • AB

            Yes – but it's a rule made to be broken if you have the talent. Here's Ezra Pound opening Canto I – the first of that famous/infamous sequence:

            "And then went down to the ship,

            Set keel to breakers, forth on the godly sea, and

            We set up mast and sail on that swart ship,

            Bore sheep aboard her, and our bodies also

            Heavy with weeping…"

      • Jenny how to get there 2.1.2


        23 November 2021

        …..I doubt “elmination” was ever a viable long-term option once Delta arrived on the scene.

        Maybe. Maybe not.

        If the advice of the health experts and pandemic modelers had been followed, We will never know for sure now, whether another two weeks of L4 in Auckland would have achieved elimination or not.

        But the TVNZ graph 'above' clearly shows that before September 22, before the L4 lockdown was ended, the elimination strategy was working and provedly does work. Under the L4 lockdown, 83 cases a day in Auckland, following a sharp downward trend, was crushed down to 9 cases a day and was still trending down toward zero cases..

        On the 21st of September, after the calculation was made that to presist with the L4 lockdown in Auckland until the numbers reached zero would put too great a burden on business, the ellimination strategy was replaced with the three step 'Roadmap' out of lockdown. As you can see with the first step on 6 Occt. The 'Roadmap' out of lockdown is being implemented on rising numbers of infections. .

        The two most effective strategies to combat a viral pandemic are social, ie lockdowns. And technological, ie vaccines.

        Overseas experience is showing us, that even at 90% of the eligible adult population having received the vaccine, some form of lockdowns will still likely be needed. That is, if we want to prevent needless deaths and protect public health services from being overloaded.


        My concern is climate change!

        In my humble opinion, our response to the global pandemic, is just a trial run for how we will solve, (or not), the climate crisis.

        To combat climate change, will also need two strategies, social, ie lockdowns. and technological, ie carbon removal.

        The lockdowns necessary to cut CO2 emissions to halt climate change will have to last, not weeks, or months, but years.

        The covid lockdowns showed what could be achieved with emissions lockdowns.


        But emissions lockdowns alone will not be enough to arrest cllimate change.

        It lis likely that the global climate system has already passed the point of no return, As a result, alongside emissions lockdowns, some form of technological CO2 removal from the atmosphere will also be needed.

        Most of the these CO2 removal technologies do not yet exist, or are not mature technologies. But this too is analogous to the pandemic. At the start of the pandemic the technological fix, vaccines, did not yet exist or were not mature technologies.

      • Jenny how to get there 2.1.3

        This is what an emissions lockdown can achieve.


  3. dv 3

    Tamakis asked to report to Auckland police station!!

    Will they be locked up now?


    Tamaki has already appeared in court twice since early October. The first appearance was on charges for organising a rally on October 2, allegedly in breach of Covid restrictions – he has pleaded not guilty.

    He was ordered to stay away from future protests but was in court again on October 20 for fronting up at the second Domain protest on October 16, allegedly breaching bail.

    He was allowed to remain free on bail on several conditions.

    One condition was that he not "organise or attend any protests in breach of any Covid-19 level requirement", while another was that he not "use the internet for the purpose of organising, attending or encouraging non-compliance with the Covid-19 Public Health Response Act 2020".

    • Gezza 3.1

      Will they be locked up now?

      I sincerely hope so, dv, although Home D at his mansion is probably more likely.

      A substantial fine might also be instructive, altho I imagine it will be his unfortunate & misguided congregation that would foot the bill.

    • Ad 3.2

      It will take a smart judge to block the media from covering sentencing, otherwise the Tamaki's have more than achieved their purpose in being arrested.

    • Jenny how to get there 3.3

      The Tamakis don't like being locked down?

      Maybe they just needed a change in direction.

      Now they don’t like being locked up?

      You just can’t please some people

  4. Maurice 4

    Perhaps he will be martyred?

    • Pete 4.1

      Maybe if he goes to jail he'll become radicalised. You know, all the stuff in his head will be turned upside down, all previous internal norms extinguished.

      In which case he'll come out 'normal.'

      • bwaghorn 4.1.1

        I doubt tamiki believes the shit he spreads, just a con man through and through..

        • tc

          Riffing on a well worn not quite christian chorus to keep his followers engaged but not too critically engaged.

        • mary_a

          bwaghorn (4.1.1) … you are absolutely correct. Tamaki and his wife, are a form of predators who see society's misguided and vulnerable as a ticket to easy wealth by telling them what they want to hear. At the present time with Covid preventing some profitable Sunday get togethers, I guess the Apostle's coffers are getting a bit low and this is causing some concern between him and Mrs Apostle.

          • Shanreagh

            In US circles critical of the evangelical/tele-evangelical churches spread of mis- and disinformation about the vaccines and Covid they often a call people such as the Destiny church leaders 'grifters'.

            Not in the older meaning of a petty thief such as a pick pocket but in this newer meaning


            David Farrier in his ‘Loopy’ article about anti vaxxers in NZ also mentions Peter Mortlock of the City Impact Church.

            These mostly self appointed ‘pastors’ are a real scourge especially when they combine money making activities with definitions of the Bible/theology that are at odds with continued good health for their followers..

    • AB 4.2

      Martyrs are usually dead – but the concept of a "living martyr" does exist. The latter is obviously better in terms of generating (and enjoying) income streams.

  5. e34rth 5

    Your opinions mean nothing when more than 12,000 of the worlds best doctors and scientists say this >> globalcovidsummit.org

    [TheStandard: A moderator moved this comment to Open Mike as being off topic or irrelevant in the post it was made in. Be more careful in future.]

    • weka 5.1

      you’re in premod to make sure you don’t spam the site. Read the Policy and decide if you want to play by the rules.

    • francesca 5.2

      You had me worried there

      Plenty of rebuttals though, and not peer reviewed.The authors have withdrawn it

      Everyones trying to make their names with covid science.Publish or perish .They're all worthwhile to do, but some don't make the final cut



      • lprent 5.2.1

        On something similar, something I was reading the other day intrigued me. The way that a measles infection will often wipe out the human immune memory. It causes

        Ummmm this isn't the one that I read – but it is about the same set of observations.

        It turns out that measles isn't a disease of the parts of the body it appears to infect. Like HIV it is a disease of the immune system. It affects T-cells. All of the pustules are almost a side effect.

        The human immune system once it realises what is happening reacts by attacking the infected T-cells and destroying them. The T-cells are the residual immune response memory – so killing them kills the long-term memory of the immune system.

        If the infection goes far enough, the only thing that the immune system remembers is how to combat measles and nothing much else. So like a child, people so afflicted have to get reinfected by a series of diseases to rebuild immunises – usually takes 2-3 years.

        I'd guess that is where this particular meme arose from.

        • Shanreagh

          Lprent I think the first study here builds on the info you have provided from the measles study the studies do not seem to have been linked by the scientists but we can look at them together…..I came across this article about the

          'The emerging insights into the immunology of COVID-19 could change scientists’ fundamental understanding of human immunity and how it can go awry.'

          By researchers at the University of California (SF)

          While it reads like a mini "I've had my name in a recognised worthy publication -for Phd people' the research and findings are really interesting. In some cases of Covid the expected interferon response does not occur because of hitherto hidden auto-immunity.

          Another piece of research is from UK figures run by US scientist experienced in using NIH & other UK data, and this looks at deaths from the Covid virus of vaccinated and unvaccinated people.


          In the latest write-up this is said

          'In all age groups, we clearly see the vaccinated groups having lower risk of COVID-19 death, and this is especially evidence during the winter Alpha surge and summer Delta surges. The vaccinated individuals appear to be MUCH less likely to die in a COVID-19 surge, with fully vaccinated individuals in week 35 having 5x, 10x, 10x, and 2x lower all cause death rates in the than respective cohorts than unvaccinated individuals. This is consistent with the vaccines protecting strongly against death even after some waning of circulating antibodies as has been noted at 5-6m post-vaccination.'

          Then from the same site work on how vaccination effectiveness works when taking into account Simpson's paradox.


          In my reading about Covid vaccination misinformation I came across Simpson's Paradox and this has since become a bit of a fascination for me. The 'takeaways' from this study are interesting bearing in mind there are continuing cries for info on how many of those in hospital or those in particular age groups are vaccinated and have covid or died etc etc

          1. 'If you see someone presenting numbers like "% of infected/hospitalized/dead from COVID-19 that are vaccinated," recognize this can be a misleading number to summarize vaccine effectiveness since it depends on % vaccinated, and it is even worse when computed over a long period of time like all of 2021.
          2. When you see people present vaccine effectiveness estimates (vs. cases, hospitalizations or deaths) using the simple relative rate reduction formula, always ask what time frame they are using. If they are modeling over a broad time frame like since the beginning of 2021, there is likely a strong time confounding that will make these numbers misleadingly high. And other countries have similar dynamics so this applies to them as well.
          3. Estimates of vaccine efficacy using this simple relative rate reduction formula should be done over a time frame short enough that we don't have strong variation in vaccination rate or in case/death counts within that interval. Computing VE separately for time intervals short enough would not be affected by this time confounding (but of course might be subject to other confounders other than time). Of course since age is also a major confounder, you would want to stratify by both time and age'.

          Bolding is from the article

          If you don't mind a bit of fuzziness in your findings or readings about vaccine efficacy then this study is one to read. Anti vaxxers not so much as the conclusions are not firm, give to both points of view etc etc.

          • RedLogix

            I recall a month or so back a study that got some attention for showing that there was little correlation in populations, both nation and state level, between %vax and case numbers. Sorry I don't have a link to hand.

            One of it's allegedly 'fatal flaws' was that all the data was gathered during singular one week time frame. If anyone had actually bothered to read the study they would have seen the authors deliberately did this to avoid the Simpsons Paradox that is incurred when time bias is ignored.

            Good comment – Simpsons Paradox is a formalism I have not seen clearly explained like this before.

            • Shanreagh

              Yes I recall reading about that criticism. This paradox (Simpson's) is that what we might think of as a 'logical' way to go about things is in fact not.

  6. Pete 6

    My thoughts go out to Duncan Garner who's "fighting for" his life.

    I do appreciate that agencies charged with doing a job do it well. This is heart wrenching stuff though. Maybe if he lives through it he can say he's "got a life." He needs to get one.


    • Alan 6.1

      He is making valid and worthwhile points- home isolation is here and it needs to work for everyone's sake – or is any form of criticism too hard to take for this government???

      • KJT 6.1.1

        Yes. It does need to work.

        However the result of decades of underfunding and mis-management of health, is at least partly to blame.

        We just don't have the capability to deal with a large outbreak of covid.

        When it takes three weeks for an "urgent" appointment with a GP, it is obvious the support in the community is not available.

        We've seen it right from the start, with DHB's using the same staff in general and covid wards to save money, for example.

        Which is why a cautious approach is justified.

    • In the previous article I read about Garner and Covid he said that he had taken some non-prescription medicines and was feeling a lot better….here it is:


      “I had a headache and my body ached all over. I felt like if I moved, something would break,” he said. Garner said that taking paracetamol and ibuprofen helped ease his symptoms, leaving him now feeling “just a bit tired.They worked a treat.”

      He wouldn't be making a fuss to score some political points for his masters would he. Surely not?

      • Alan 6.2.1

        If the home isolation system is not functioning correctly, it would remiss of him not to point it out. Thousands of people will go through this process, best to highlight and sort out any defects at this stage rather than later in the proceedings – for everyone's sake.

        And he isn't the only one making similar observations.

    • joe90 6.3

      still waiting for a food package to turn up.

      Dude's fresh off a ≥$350k gig.

      Surely he can afford to click and pay for collection. /

      • Alan 6.3.1

        Of course he can, but what about the less affluent people going through home isolation, can they afford it?

        He is doing them a good service by pointing out any deficiencies in the home isolation system, he should be applauded for that.

  7. swordfish 8


    A "repugnant" policy that protects violent and abusive state house tenants who intimidate law-abiding neighbours is potentially unlawful and open to legal challenge before the courts, an expert says.

    Litigation lawyer Adina Thorn says she is considering a class action on behalf of affected Kāinga Ora tenants and private homeowners who are being terrorised by unruly state house clients.

    It follows a Herald investigation revealing death threats, intimidation and abuse, with numerous Kiwis claiming antisocial Kāinga Ora tenants are causing mayhem and destroying their families' lives.

    Kāinga Ora policy protecting violent, abusive state house tenants may be unlawful: lawyer – NZ Herald

    Kāinga Ora under fire after Black Power gang party in Whangārei state house – NZ Herald

    Divergent battles breaking out on the home front | Stuff.co.nz

    • RedLogix 8.1

      An obvious and blatant example of a state entity ignoring established law as a matter of unstated policy and practice. Ministerial resignation time I would have thought.

      On the other hand maybe I've got this wrong and this Kāinga Ora outfit is not accountable to Parliament by design.

    • greywarshark 8.2


      I was thinking of you when I saw the Radionz item about State housing.

      I hope something will be done to improve matters for your people if they are still affected. All the best with that. Nga hiahia pai.

  8. arkie 9

    Only one day remains to make a submission on the emissions reduction plan. Please engage with the political process that is all ready underway and have your say on the Govt response to the greatest issue of our time! Closes Nov 24.

    Discussion document

    Comprehensive submission via Ministry of Environment

    Quick submission via Ministry

    Quick submission via Greens

    Democracy demands that we participate, do your bit to ensure we have the strongest, most democratic emissions reduction plan we can.

  9. Ad 10

    Nearly 84% fully vaccinated nationwide: 83.6%.

    Just a whisker behind Australia's 83.8%.

    • alwyn 10.1

      I wonder how many of them would now be considered to be unprotected?

      From what I have seen the Pfizer vaccine seems to be regarded as no longer being truly effective about six months after the second dose. Given that there were about 60,000 people who had had one dose by 31 March this year, and the recommended gap was 3 weeks they would probably all be beyond the cut-off date.

      Does anyone have any idea as to the effective vaccination rate is and how many people have had a booster?


      • Gypsy 10.1.1

        Here's another crazy factoid. The expiry of the vaccine passports is 6 months after they were issued, not 6 months after your second jab. My vaxx passport expires 19 May 2022, which is 9 months after my second jab. Even after just 6 months, the effectiveness of my jabs will have dropped to 45%. So for 3 months I will have a valid vaccine passport with only 45% vaccine effectiveness. Or am I missing something?

        • McFlock

          You're right. You still have half the chance of infection of an unvaxxed person.

          • alwyn

            It isn't the chance of infection that interests me the most. I'm happy to accept the fact that I am probably going to get the disease at some time unless I were to follow the most extreme, and frankly unbearable, isolation procedures. Happy that is unless I have to accept that I will die if I get it.

            What I am really concerned about is how serious will the infection be when it happens? At my age there might be a 10% chance of dying if I get it and if I were unvaccinated. I understand that if you are vaccinated but get the disease it is not as serious as it is if you are unvaccinated. What happens to this figure as the time since your last dose goes up? Does it change and does your chance of dying rise if with that time should you actually be infected?

            • McFlock

              Well, indications are that effectiveness against high viral loads do decrease over time. But for specifics, you might want to chat with your doctor – and also consider how and why the answer to that question will change your behaviour.

              I think some people have been thinking vaccines are supposed to be a bulletproof vest, and the analogy holds – but there's a reason the trade term is "bullet resistant" rather than "bullet proof".

              I ain't stopped masking and checking in just because I've been double-vaxxed.

            • joe90

              Looks good.

        • Sabine

          i guess he is talking about the recomended booster shots.

          So far we can assume that after 6 month the overal protection is starting to disappear slowly, and thus booster shots are required. Atm that would be every six month. https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(21)02183-8/fulltext#:~:text=Effectiveness%20against%20other%20(non%2Ddelta,)%20at%204%E2%80%935%20months.

          After that it is recommended to get a booster, every 6 month.

          I have asked also how those that are in need of a booster shot – everyone in the initial Group 1 when the first vaccines were made available – are counted.. That would be those jabbed from Jan – May.

          And how will this issue be handled in the future, say with your Passport – will it expire after 6 month, or is there a grace period to get a booster and so on and so forth.

          The question is not are you still 'protected' as the studies show that protection is still there, the question is How will that 'booster' status be handled, will 'boosters' be mandatory, and how will that be enforced. Essentially with people 'falling' out of 'fully' protected jab status one can argue that 90% is never fully reachable. 🙂

          • Gypsy

            I guess we are still in a 'learning curve' to some degree. Having taken the decision to be vaccinated, and with my other half being health compromised, I would be keen to be in line for a booster as the effectiveness of my vaccinations wane.

  10. Nic the NZer 11

    Speaking of obnoxious js blockers, I guess your aware that the standard mobile site on Chrome/Android prevents pastes?

    [TheStandard: A moderator moved this comment to Open Mike as being off topic or irrelevant in the post it was made in. Be more careful in future.]

    • lprent 11.1

      So it does. Interesting.

      I tried this out when I installed it and when it last updated (which was a while ago). One of the things I don’t like with javascript is the sneaky updates from global sources. In this case CKEditor.

      That isn’t a problem with TinyMCE. That however has the problem that it isn’t obeying width restrictions and possibly has other issues.

      I’ll look at that before I look at BusinessDesk

      • Nic the NZer 11.1.1

        Brilliant. Let me know when the fix is live and I can check its a fix for the same problem.

        Yep, js library updates coming externally to the users can be a trap.

  11. McFlock 12

    Heard through the grapevine that public health units across the country are already working all hours to keep up with the current outbreak. And it's not even fully across NI yet.

    • Sabine 12.1

      Scared, was the word a hospital admin person used some weeks ago when talking abut the nurses at the local hospital. They are scared. And so they should be.

  12. Accurate

    • Shanreagh 13.1

      Also listening to or reading anything by Barry Slope-off.

      Back in the day, he was a key contact in Parliament for oyster deliveries and had some good 'Southland exports to the North' days where Southland industries had mini showcases. As they say' he seems to have gone right off the boil' since that time. wink

  13. newsense 14

    I know it’s late in the day, but this allows you to draw your own conclusions about the relationship between the Taxpayers union, Pigswill and some writers at the Democracy project.
    Stuff 3 waters article

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