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Open mike 24/03/2022

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, March 24th, 2022 - 114 comments
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Open mike is your post.

For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).

Step up to the mike …

114 comments on “Open mike 24/03/2022 ”

  1. Dennis Frank 1

    US President Biden told the Business Roundtable’s CEO Quarterly Meeting that the new world order is coming. Folks haven't been so excited since President Bush did likewise more than 30 years ago!

    Joe Biden caused a stir on Monday during a gathering of business leaders at the White House when he alluded to a coming “new world order” in the wake of the Ukraine crisis, apparently not stopping to consider the awkward legacy of the phrase.

    https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-politics/biden-new-world-order-meaning-b2041896.html

    Novices may need to read this primer:

    The New World Order conspiracy theory is the belief that a secretive totalitarian cabal of world governments are attempting to establish an international order that would see the people of earth suppressed under a globalist regime.

    The common theme is that a secretive elite (for instance, the “Illuminati”) is conspiring to eventually rule the world through an authoritarian one-world government, which would replace sovereign nation-states.

    Usage of the phrase can be traced back as far as the early 20th century, when figures like Churchill used the term…

    https://www.nationalworld.com/news/world/new-world-order-conspiracy-theory-meaning-explained-us-president-joe-biden-business-speech-3621673

    What he actually said was this: "now is a time when things are shifting. There's going to be a new world order out there, and we've got to lead it. And we've got to unite the rest of the free world in doing it." https://www.newsweek.com/joe-biden-new-world-order-conspiracy-qanon-1690335

    Well, good luck with that. A couple of centuries of geopoliticking by American presidents has caused most of the free world to adopt a fairly jaundiced view of the prospects. But god loves a trier, so watch this space…

    • Dennis Frank 1.1

      There's a new twist on this – the baddies are liberals.

      He also referenced a “liberal world order,” which he said has helped the world avoid global conflicts since 1946.

      Some might say the New World Order is comprised of the “Illuminati.” Others might say Freemasons, and some might say Communists. Antisemitic conspiracy theorists have placed Jews at the center of this cabal. These days, it’s often a hodgepodge of “liberal” villains, such as billionaire philanthropist George Soros (often the target of antisemitic conspiracies), the Clintons, and Bill Gates.

      https://www.vice.com/en/article/akvq54/joe-biden-new-world-order

      • Peter 1.1.1

        Jacinda Ardern saying she was going to the bakery department of a New World supermarket to order a birthday cake would be enough to get some in a lather.

        They would quote that as her confirming that the NWO implementation was underway. That is the way of the wacky conspiracy world.

      • RedLogix 1.1.2

        Interesting – as someone who has spoken frequently toward the necessity of a global order that supercedes the nations right to war – I am pretty familiar with these concerns.

        In my view the choice will come down to this – a system of world governance that no-one likes, or nuclear annihilation.

        • Dennis Frank 1.1.2.1

          Ambivalence around the topic is due to variable framing. For instance, if Biden were not afflicted by the habitual US as global policeman tacit default, he might have deployed a multipolar framing for the NWO.

          Reform of the UN Security Council can always be declared as item #1 on the NWO agenda. If it were, those of us who look askance at the powers that be could then reframe somewhat: "okay, maybe they aren't really fos."

          Just a question of authenticity & collective intent. Humans are self-organising systems by nature, but they became hierarchic by culture. If geopolitics were to produce a biodiverse global governance system, folks everywhere would see it as authentic – provided hierarchies collapsed, decision-making was consensual, the UN got re-organised to prioritise delivery of suitable results, etc.

          Conservatives would argue that hierarchies are natural due to human nature inclining towards meritocracy rather than democracy. I think there's enough truth in that to preserve it as a working hypothesis – but not enough to use it to prevent progress.

          • Ad 1.1.2.1.1

            Oh you guys.

            There's not going to be a new world order.

            In 2009 the EU couldn't even act usefully on the GFC. So the hard right continues to rise despite strong multilateralism.

            Last year we barely had a functioning world trade order. So we have instead trade agreements.

            If the world's countries were now asked to vote on the existence of the UN, my bet is there's be a strong NO.

            We have gradualist improvements like a global corporate tax floor, and the Paris Agreement.

            I think we'll just muddle along.

            • Dennis Frank 1.1.2.1.1.1

              we'll just muddle along

              Yeah, most likely. Dunno if that means Biden was merely frothing at the mouth though. And even if he's the archetypal liberal, I wouldn't assume incompetence will necessarily result…

            • RedLogix 1.1.2.1.1.2

              muddle, muddle – boom

          • AB 1.1.2.1.2

            Conservatives would argue that hierarchies are natural due to human nature…

            I'm nearly finished Graeber and Wengrow (The Dawn of Everything) and I'm not reaching that conclusion at all. Matters of hierarchy and authority have historically been deliberate choices by self-conscious actors – and there is a pre-history of cultures deliberately preventing hierarchies from becoming fixed in nature or permanent in time.

            • Dennis Frank 1.1.2.1.2.1

              there is a pre-history of cultures deliberately preventing hierarchies from becoming fixed

              Whilst it's true that we can only speculate on prehistory re social structures, I suspect you're right – I've read books describing the pattern of hunter/gatherer societies as based on parity relations. Anthropological investigation of relic survivors into the modern era disclosed a culture of collectively punishing aspirants who tried to attain control.

              The consensual view seems to be that hierarchy arose via settlement and the protection of grain stores – thus it first emerged in villages, then towns, then cities, before rulers achieved dominion over regions.

              The economic analysis of the transition from hunter/gatherers to herding then settlement focuses on evidence that items valued had to be carried personally until storage became habitual & settlers became location-bound.

              • DB Brown

                "The economic analysis of the transition from hunter/gatherers to herding then settlement…"

                Jesus wept.

                The assumption hunter-gatherers were not in settlements holds no weight at all. Australia's been settled for more than 65 000 years. Migrations or walkabout may also have been lifestyle choices, once an area was known. So entire continents may have been utilised aka settled with relatively small numbers of us on the scene. Back then, maybe everyone had a bach and a blind out the coast.

                Settlements grew larger as populations grew larger. Cultivation grew around settlements. Security in numbers enabled survival against the odds – to beating the odds – and now finally stacking the odds back upon ourselves.

                The various landmasses of the Earth have been settled as long as people have been here. While these cowboy-cosplay types flopping their missiles out still think it's a frontier to be conquered.

                I'm all for cooperation. If US led the charge on how it is to be, I'd most firmly decline.

            • RedLogix 1.1.2.1.2.2

              Yeah maybe you could do anarchic anti-hierarchy in a world with no technology and less than a few million people scattered across the planet in tiny groups.

              • AB

                They give examples of it occurring in what at the time would have been large groups. And although the technology was simple by modern standards, it existed. Flint-knapping for instance is a highly sophisticated skill, you or I would be utterly crap at it.

                I think you are assuming that current arrangements are inevitable and are then doing a deterministic backwards projection. That – and making assumptions about what I think this knowledge of early human hierarchy formation and resistance actually might mean for the present day. On the latter point I have no specific idea at all, only that we might have more agency (to use a fashionable word, I prefer “free will”) than we imagine.

        • mikesh 1.1.2.2

          Bertrand Russel suggested at one time that world government would be necessary if we wished to avoid nuclear annihilation. He thought the best bet for bringing it about lay with the Soviet Union.

          • RedLogix 1.1.2.2.1

            The largest obstacle remains totalitarian actors like the Kremlin and the CCP – and until they're gone the US will never let go it's objections either.

            • mikesh 1.1.2.2.1.1

              No. The main obstacle is the US, who won't countenance world government unless they get to be in charge. And the main reason they want to be in charge is so that can have first dibs on the worlds resources. The US fear that the massive continent, at the top of the world, a continent that includes Russia, China and Europe, will come to dominate. This why they meddle in affairs on the other side off the world from their own hemisphere.

              They say they want to make the world safe for democracy; but in reality they want to make the world receptive to a predatory form of capitalism

              • RedLogix

                Mindless marxist boiler plate anti-US bigotry. It is so pervasive on the far-left that even here on this thread we see one morally bankrupt fool after another unable to bring themselves to condemn the murdering of a country right under their noses.

                To repeat myself – there is no moral difference between the extremes on the left and right – both will happily condone mass murder if they think it might promote their cause.

        • weston 1.1.2.3

          " Governance that noone wants "etc

          or a simple system which dis allows the United snakes States from doing what eva the fuck it likes in the world whether thats suffocating fledgling democracys or imposing totally illegal sanctions on sovereign countries

          Thats my idea of a new world order !

          • weston 1.1.2.3.1

            No idea how that G got there !

            [lprent: The system uses cookies from the client side to fill your previous details locally on your browser. After you manage to shove in a odd character or something on your browser gets corrupted, the values are sent as part of the comment to the server. It returns those values as a cookie with the updating page so you’re updated on what you last used from that browser.

            So in answer to your question. I can’t tell you an answer. Only you and your browser can. Just have a peek at what is in the fields before you submit. ]

  2. Mike Hoskings "The Hosk" reckons the rot is setting in for Jacinda and Labour in the polls, when will this guy just disappear and piss off back to his relations in Australia.

    I reckon it was just a one off spike for National after Jacinda has had some bad press about the Covid Protest in Wellington and the other issues associated with Covid.

    Whatever decision Jacinda makes it will be deemed to be wrong by MSM and National/ACT/NZF as they are vying for the swing voters. She is on hiding to nothing Jacinda and Labour can only make the best decisions on the information that is available.

  3. Hosk and NZ Granny Herald Setting the Narrative.

  4. pat 4

    Hospo spokesman on the radio bemoaning the lack of patronage, blaming government messaging on covid and all ignoring the elephant in the room….diminished discretionary dollars.

    • Muttonbird 4.1

      Also, people not wanting to get Covid-19, so have changed their social behaviour.

      We are at peak Covid right now with several dozen dying every week. Not sure why Hoskings or the hospitality sector don't seem able to acknowledge that.

    • DB Brown 4.2

      I got discretionary dollars to go out and get completely trolloped, and a strong desire to do so. What I don't have is suicidal tendencies.

      Business folk think their overpriced drinks and muffins are so good we should risk death to consume them.

      What a joke these people are.

      • Patricia Bremner 4.2.1

        "Your coffee wine and a serve of covid on the side"surprise

      • JeremyB 4.2.3

        Hear Hear

      • tc 4.2.4

        Jokes with soapboxes whining constantly like video store owners who haven't woken up to the world of streaming.

        We, along with others, no longer consider restaurants and bars as places of interest.

        Covid forced a change we will persist with as others are.

      • McFlock 4.2.5

        Lol I've been going to the cinema a bit in the last few months, but accidentally went to a popular movie. Lots of people, even with spacing. Masked up, and no increase in coughs over pre-covid times, but the one or two that happened were a visceral fucking tension-raiser. Never again – obscure movies just before they finish their run for me from now on.

    • Joe90 4.3

      People frequented their establishments because of the restrictions.

      Wait untill they find out that people will have second thoughts about sharing spaces with other, previously ineligible patrons.

    • Hongi Ika 4.4

      People do not really want a free side dish of Covid when they go out to dinner and to socialize with family and friends.

  5. Ad 5

    The mandates may be history, but can Labour recover enough for a third term?

    • weka 5.1

      don't see why not. If we set aside the high vote because of covid, then they look like they're in a similar position as before, most likely a L/G government. Hard to predict though, it's not like the world is going to be particularly stable.

      Best thing that could happen would be for not a lot to happen for six months and the PM and caucus getting to recover from the intense sustained stress the past two years.

      • Anne 5.1.1

        Best thing that could happen would be for not a lot to happen for six months and the PM and caucus getting to recover from the intense sustained stress of the past two years.

        Always a good idea to put oneself in other people's shoes. Thanks weka.

        The moaners and the complainers have had stresses sure, but they are nothing compared to the PM and her ministers. Yet they reward the Govt. with bitter insults and the spreading of nasty memes like a bunch of 3 year olds denied cookies from the cookie jar.

        I doubt the PM has had a single day's rest and recreation since the start of the pandemic. I doubt her ministers have had either. Yet they have had to put up with an unprecedented vitriolic lashing from a variety of sources including some in the media who apparently don't know any better.

    • Incognito 5.2

      General election is more than a year away and a week is a long time in politics. The mandates will be water under the bridge. It will be back to BAU before then and I think it will be much tighter than in 2020 producing a genuine coalition government this time.

      • DB Brown 5.2.1

        Bring it. This mandated to be meh is getting up my nose.

      • weka 5.2.2

        what will be back to BAU?

        • DB Brown 5.2.2.1

          I guess that point does need to be repeatedly stressed. Even to me. Oh How I LONG for days of old… but maybe I just long for less disasters, dictators and death.

        • Incognito 5.2.2.2

          General life, news cycle, politics, et cetera. Covid stats and those daily updates will disappear from the MSM front pages. People will forget Ashley’s surname. Even those QR codes will have disappeared from view. In 2023, we’re likely to see a Budget that’s no longer dominated by Covid and the parties will go into full campaign mode. That’s not to say that this pandemic is over – it will have a long fat tail.

          • weka 5.2.2.2.1

            I imagine the election year will proceed as usual, although I don't feel as optimistic (or pragmatic?) as you on the rest.

            • Incognito 5.2.2.2.1.1

              I’d like to think that many would want to return to what they consider ‘normal’ or at least near-normal life. That might be wishful thinking, of course, and depends on how fat & long the pandemic tail will be. I have Stockholm Syndrome 🙁

    • Muttonbird 5.3

      One of the many things the government doesn't seem to be getting credit for is bringing house price growth under control.

      If this stabilisation continues they'll have fulfilled their biggest election promise. That, on top of our stellar Covid response are things voters will remember in the booths.

      • weka 5.3.1

        If they campaign on that, expect activists and some organisations to go hard on how many people are living in poverty because Labour wouldn't sort the housing crisis.

        (and afaik, it's not under control).

        • Muttonbird 5.3.1.1

          Perhaps under control is a bit strong, but there is no doubt house prices at the moment have slowed or stopped, and in some areas reversed.

          You can tell by the tense doom and gloom articles in the property sections of the media.

          • weka 5.3.1.1.1

            slowing house price rises is rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. Likewise stalling them. There is nothing to celebrate there and if Labour try and trumpet that they deserve everything they get (unfortunately we don't deserve a Nact govt).

            • Muttonbird 5.3.1.1.1.1

              It's one part of the long process of changing behaviour. If it can stick, why shouldn't it be celebrated?

              A stable and sustainable housing sector is what we want, isn't it?

              • weka

                keeping housing prices high isn't stable and sustainable. It pleases the middle class liberals who want their cake and to eat it too, and keeps a lot of people in poverty and the poverty keeps compounding over time.

      • Hongi Ika 5.3.2

        Very difficult for the Government to control house prices when NZ'ers are addicted to housing, like drug addicts are addicted to heroine or methamphetamine. It has been a road to riches for many NZers for very little effort.

        • Muttonbird 5.3.2.1

          This government has used some controls to obvious effect. This is what Labour had promised and they are delivering. They will have used political capital but this is what most people want.

          Agree it is difficult to change a society which has accepted and promoted real estate agents being bigger than pop stars. How did we get to a situation where selling houses warrants shiny marketing billboards up and down main roads.

          • Belladonna 5.3.2.1.1

            Given that they've presided over sky-rocketing housing prices during the last 4.5 years – the fact that it looks as though these may have reached apogee is not much to celebrate.

            And, begs the question, if these strategies to calm the housing market are so successful, why didn't they apply them at the beginning of the Ardern government?

            Frankly, I think that house prices may have plateaued because they've reached the maximum extent the 'market' is willing to pay, right now. Which (I think) says more about financial uncertainty (impact on international markets, cost-of-living, etc.) than it does about the strategies Labour may have put in place.

            • Dennis Frank 5.3.2.1.1.1

              Good comment. I googled housing price controls nz to see if Muttonbird was telling the truth but none showed up.

              What I got included this Stuff report from six months ago where

              Finance Minister Grant Roberston commented that he “still wants house prices to keep rising, but at a slower rate”.

              https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/opinion-analysis/300411965/how-do-we-slow-the-property-market

              Looks like the market decided to grant Grant his wish – but only for half a year. Not sure how thrilled he'll be about that. These neoliberals get seriously addicted to rising markets & I wouldn't want him to be traumatised. However it is entirely possible that Muttonbird actually meant Reserve Bank signalling instead & wrote that bit accidentally.

              • Muttonbird

                Certainly telling the truth as far as I’m aware. I'm talking about the policy changes made by the government which I have outlined below @ 5.3.2.1.1.2.

                Even the Reserve Bank's remit was changed by Grant Robertson when he asked them to consider housing in their monetary policy. This is also something the government has done to address the over-heated housing market.

            • Muttonbird 5.3.2.1.1.2

              And, begs the question, if these strategies to calm the housing market are so successful, why didn't they apply them at the beginning of the Ardern government?

              Winston Peters, of course.

              A lot of things have contributed to the current pausing of the market. Interest rates and uncertainty, but also the foreign buyers ban, extension of the bright line test and removal of interest deductions, stricter immigration management, and record house building too.

              Some of this is external but some of it is policy and behaviour and the government should be congratulated for that.

              • Dennis Frank

                Fair enough, I probably took controls too literally. Whether this mix generated the market result is a moot point but not one I'm in any position to argue about – I agree the mix would have influenced expectations significantly but competition for houses is hard to defeat…

              • Belladonna

                Some evidence that Peters was a barrier in the way of the Ardern government implementing house price calming strategies, would be nice.

                It's a lazy argument that all of the failures of the first Ardern government, can be laid at the feet of its coalition partner.

                I don't hold much brief for Peters – but don't think there is any evidence that he (or the people who traditionally voted for him) wanted the skyrocketing prices for housing evidenced over the last 5 years. Stability, and possibly a slow but steady increase, yes; but the unsustainable levels that we've seen, no.

                The foreign buyers ban (which Peters enthusiastically supported) had little, if any, impact on house prices. It was implemented in 2018 – and prices continued their upward spiral unabated.

                The extension of the bright line test (with the continued exemption of the family home – a loophole through which you can drive a truck) – and applying only for 'new' buys – also had little immediate impact. It was implemented in March 2021 (so a year ago) – while prices continued their upwards trajectory, unabated.

                The one policy which *may* have had an impact is the removal of interest deductions. Implemented in October 21, for property bought from March 21 – and phased in over 4 years for existing rental properties. There was no sign of immediate levelling off of prices – but it's possible that it did cause some medium-term unwillingness to invest in housing.

                The policy which (unintentionally) may have an impact on house prices was the government's anti-loan-shark legislation – which caught up first-home buyers in its net. The result being that it was *much* harder to qualify for a mortgage with the banks (because of the liabilities accruing to lenders if the borrower was unable to pay back the loan). The impact was seen in the dropping numbers of buyers, and topping-out of prices in Jan/Feb this year. [It's unintentional, because the government is on record as saying that there was no intention to affect mortgage lending]

                The factor which does look as though is having an effect, is inflation (which, as has been so eloquently expressed on this site – is primarily international in origin), combined with the financial uncertainty caused by the international supply chain and (now) the Ukraine situation. People are less willing to 'invest' in 30+ year mortgages in an uncertain financial environment – which has an impact on the number of willing buyers, and therefore the prices that the willing sellers may be 'forced' to accept.

                • McFlock

                  I suspect Labour also expected kiwibuild to actually work. The next obvious strategy was a CGT, but they'd ruled that out to get elected.

                  Agree about the anti-loan shark measures – lowered demand by making it difficult to buy a home to actually live in (sigh)

                  • Blazer

                    The anti loan shark effect is exaggerated by banks ,by the opposition as a cause for a slowdown,when the reality is…the market is correcting..regardless.

                    So 3 months of prudent expenditure is too much to expect from home buyers…do me a..favour.

                    Every 2nd hand car dealer in Sth Auck should be out of business with this legislation…how come they ..aren't?

                  • Blazer

                    What exaggerations would they be..then?N.F.I

                    • McFlock

                      Every 2nd hand car dealer in Sth Auck should be out of business with this legislation…

                      Every used car dealership isn't a teeny tiny exaggeration?

                    • Blazer

                      It may surprise you but I think 'every' is appropriate.

                      I actually had access to deals done in this sector and believe you me,I was appalled at the conditions and blatant profiteering inflicted on unsophisticated and gullible…people.

                    • McFlock

                      It does moderately surprise me that you believe, literally, that there should not be a single used car yard able to operate in South Auckland.

                      Sure, used car dealers are by reputation and often in practise capitalist predators upon the weak, but it's surely and exaggeration to say that there aren't enough fiscally-ok people in South Auckland to keep a single car yard running. We're still talking 100k+ people. Even at half the national rate of 0.8 cars per people, That's 40k lpvs. Ten year lifespan for a vehicle is still 4k car purchases a year, no? Wouldn't that be enough for one car yard at least?

                    • Blazer

                      O.K ,I agree at least one car yard will survive.

                      How's business.

                    • McFlock

                      no better idea than you.

                • Poission

                  The factor which does look as though is having an effect, is inflation (which, as has been so eloquently expressed on this site – is primarily international in origin), combined with the financial uncertainty caused by the international supply chain

                  Nah it is funny money, a decade of low interest rates (which made credit too cheap) drawdowns from existing home equity to fund " investment housing" and incorrect investment by councils to fund both vanity and Potemkin projects.

                  The days of cheap money are over,high inflation is here and higher interest rates are coming NO mistake its in big yellow lights

                  • DB Brown

                    It was my understanding funny money (printed out of thin air) needs to be matched to goods or inflation occurs but all knowing folks here assured me I was wrong. It seems quite clear, and shows how easy a land grab from the investor class takes place. Pump in money, inflate goods, people throw their life savings at a seemingly vanishing (real estate) market… raise interest, Mom & Pop go into negative equity, mortgagee bonanza.

                    Glad I'm not the only one who's wrong all the time. angel

                    • Poission

                      When investment appreciation exceeds productive growth ( output) both asset inflation occurs and inequality rises.

                      Until the great equalization occurs then its turtles all the way down.

          • Hongi Ika 5.3.2.1.2

            Arrogant pricks talked to one yesterday talked to me as if I was a child, I am 64 years old and have worked in the Real Estate Industry for 3 years, worst 3 years of my life hated every minute of it.

    • Dennis Frank 5.4

      Yes, but it depends on the peter principle. If they have reached the plateau of their natural level of competence, policy delivery will continue to underwhelm.

      Therefore parity with National is likely to persist. However the effect of the protest & the 20% to a third of the electorate resonance it achieved will diminish increasingly, so any achievements the govt produces will be likely to re-open a margin over National.

      • Patricia Bremner 5.4.1

        If they have reached the plateau of their natural level of competence, policy delivery will continue to underwhelm.

        That sounds so pompous Dennis.

        We have been delivered one of the better responses to covid, with fewer deaths plus support for people's wellbeing and work as we led as normal lives as possible during a pandemic.

        We have more reality in bringing the housing "market" back to the concept of a "shelter", with the reason for speculation reined in by clever tax policy, begun by National but extended and improved by Labour.

        We have recognition that "the rule of law" may need mandates to achieve health outcomes, that democracy allows people to get grumpy and not see the wood for the trees, and even burn down the forest at times in a childish tantrum.

        I await the next budget with interest, as climate is our next big task, and there will be other difficulties to overcome, that shock jocks and poorly chosen candidates think they have answers for, or ways to ignore.

        As the saying goes in Government and in Opposition. “Show me the Policy”

        It is our right to sit in judgement of other's work, but praise where it is due is only fair, and sweeping generalisations are unhelpful imo.

        • Dennis Frank 5.4.1.1

          So you glossed over my if at the start, huh? Pomposity is in your mind, realism in mine. I judge them only on the results they get – which is why my language is always carefully phrased to indicate an open mind.

          But your bias is so powerful you don't notice that. And your addiction to exhibiting whataboutism merely makes you seem deviant. Evasion of poll results is the inevitable consequence. What if you were to get real instead? Then you might be worth reading.

          I agree that "praise where it is due is only fair" and Labour "delivered one of the better responses to covid" – but I'd go further. I think they delivered the best out of all the nations, based on the evidence I've seen. However the voters no longer rate that highly, right? Only a third of them do currently.

          • Patricia Bremner 5.4.1.1.1

            My bias has been out there for ages lol. Bringing up items that may sway people's opinions is not whataboutism. Like you, I choose my words with care. I am not as clever as you Dennis, but I did say "It sounded.. not that it was pompous' There was no personal slagging in what I wrote. Cheers.

            • Dennis Frank 5.4.1.1.1.1

              Okay thanks Patricia. I do try to be careful but sometimes fail… smiley

              • Patricia Bremner

                yes All good. D. I should have asked..” Do you think they have plateaued and lack skill?”

    • Patricia Bremner 5.5

      There is more vitriol on the PM's facebook, but generally doing a count of "thumbs up" plus "hearts", they outnumber all others by 2/3rds to 3/4s. The antis have just ramped up their criticisms. The worst perpetrators have very new pages, or they are full of religious cant or large oily vehicles.

      • Ad 5.5.1

        It's cruel but there's nothing Labour can do.

        Still 2 months to Budget, and it better be a vote-suction machine.

    • Hongi Ika 5.6

      National/ACT/NZF don't have a shit show in hell of getting anywhere near Government in 2023.

      • Ad 5.6.1

        Tax cuts win.

        • roblogic 5.6.1.1

          Nobody “wins” it’s just that the incumbents piss off the voters enough to get booted out. Ordinary Kiwis lose if National gets in.

          Jacinda used to be Labour’s greatest asset but now everyone is sick of her. I can’t be bothered with the weekly announcement of weird & complex new rules to be implemented in 6 weeks time that nobody will follow in practice.,

          The Opposition parties have tapped into a rich vein of resentment and frustration. After locking up Auckland for 100 days and keeping MIQ going for too long with v thin justification, Labour has evaporated all its good will. The first lockdown was supposed to be a short sharp response not repeated endlessly.

          Covid does not let the Government off the hook for their failures and betrayals of working class Kiwis by sustaining the housing bubble, suppressing wages for essential workers, allowing food banks to become the norm, ignoring beneficiaries, failing at mental health reform, & doubling down on neoliberal austerity

    • Hongi Ika 5.7

      Arrogant pricks talked to one yesterday talked to me as if I was a child, I am 64 years old and have worked in the Real Estate Industry for 3 years, worst 3 years of my life hated every minute of it.

  6. Reality 6

    The Hospitality sector never stop complaining, ever, no matter what. Covid has changed the world in the last two years but Hospitality cannot seem to accept that people are not so ready to wine and dine among crowds of others. Perhaps there are simply too many cafes and restaurants now. And with the cost of living rising steeply people probably cannot eat out quite as often.

    But they keep demanding subsidies, vouchers….

    • arkie 6.1

      There were too many cafes and restaurants even before the pandemic! Though an upside of fewer of them would be increased home ownership for millennials and younger; no more flat whites and avocado toast denuding their deposits!

    • Hongi Ika 6.2

      $12.00 Steinlagers and Heinekins, people do not have the discretionary spendinding these days especially after 2 x Years of Covid.

  7. Reality 7

    RNZ this morning reports the IMF has said the government has handled the economy and pandemic well. The economy is in a strong position because of "sound management".

    Guessing we will not hear Hosking raise that on his morning hate rants. Nor will Luxon/Seymour.

  8. Byd0nz 8

    A bit of good news today with the death of Allbright, the one that thought the death of…
    In a 1996 interview with CBS, Albright defended the Clinton administration's economic sanctions against Iraq, saying that the deaths of 600,000 Iraqi children under the age of 5 was "worth it."

    hope they bury her face down.

  9. Koff 9

    Good and rather chilling article by Gordon Campbell in his Werewolf blog about Luxon's dismissal of the "poor and unambitious". (a theme already covered on the Standard by Micky a couple of days ago). Predictably, Luxon's poor choice of words (Campbell unfavourably compares this to John key's more careful phraseology) has not been challenged by the MSM. Mind you, one wonders just how many politicians (of most stripes) think the same as Luxon, but are astute enough not to be so stupid to admit it?

    • Patricia Bremner 9.1

      yes Yes a thought provoking read.

    • tc 9.2

      Nationals media never holds it to account.

      Luxon knows that so has gone for the dog whistling, innuendo, rubbery tax claims etc

    • dv 9.3

      This from the Campbell article worth a full repeat.

      Jeremy Rose is so consistent with Luxon’s comments yesterday that it reads as confirmation:

      “I met a former Air NZ flight attendant recently. She told me how their conditions were cut to the point that she had to pay for her own tickets to Auckland to work on international flights. On a return trip to Wellington she was told she’d be sitting next to Luxon. She asked not to be, but they said it was the only seat.

      So, she told, me she had to decide whether to tell him how she felt or live with the fact that she hadn’t. So, she started to explain the situation and he interrupted her with: “You’re just waiters and waitresses…”. She said to me not only was that not true – there’s a lot of safety training, first aid etc, etc – but it was insulting to wait staff. She then pointed out to Luxon that the top 10 staff were earning $19 million between them to which he replied: “I could earn a lot more elsewhere.” He seems to lack any self-awareness, humility, decency or even intelligence.”

  10. mac1 10

    “You’re just waiters and waitresses…"

    Don't we hear the same putdown about our Prime Minister's first job as an assistant in a fish and chip shop? Some observations about the worth of work follow.

    First, f&c shops served our Catholic family with a weekly meal. That was always appreciated.

    I'm the son of a grocer. My first paid job was mowing lawns. Then a shop assistant in Woolworths. Then working as a cleaner in a tyre factory got me through Uni. Those men sweated at their work, hard and long, in three shift work cycles. Then working as a coal trimmer one year at Uni for a holiday job taught me how wield a shovel, thirty six tons in a day emptying rail wagons of coal.

    There I worked alongside medal-bedecked WW2 veterans and staunch unionists.

    At the end of my working life and retired from teaching I went back to cleaning and met again with the same reactions about my worth sinceI was a lowly cleaner. The people I worked for, whose houses I cleaned, some of whom were openly despisers, did not realise that the people they employed were better educated than they were, brighter, better read judging from the bookshelves that did not exist, appreciating art better than the 'art' on the walls from accessory shops, more musical judging from the musical instruments not able to be seen. My fellow cleaner had an MA and had been a secondary school head of department.

    Yet we were judged, as was Prime Minister Ardern, by our job status.

    One last fact. hospital cleaners have a social value rating of x15 their actual wage, whereas bankers have a negative social rating according to an article in the Guardian in 2009.

    https://www.theguardian.com/business/2009/dec/14/new-economics-foundation-social-value

    • Peter 10.1

      As well as being open despisers the open despisers were arrogant and ignorant arseholes.

      I remember in the early '70s a kid being upset about his father being a driver of a petrol tanker. They were on strike and the target of public opprobrium. It wasn't the drama of the strike or the criticism but the fact that his father was a mere truck driver. Of course his mates' fathers who were mangers doctors and lawyers were totally dependent on his father. Society could not operate without his contribution.

      Seeing him become aware of that was heartening. If there weren't assistants in takeaway shops and cleaners how would things be? And how would Air NZ with Luxon have got on without cleaners and "waiters and waitresses?"

  11. Reality 11

    The PM is disparaged because she worked in a fish and chip shop as a teenager – somewhere I have seen a photo of Luxon as a teenager when he worked at McDonalds. Wonder when the right wingers will hone in on that and snort at him as they do with the PM.

    However she went on to university, travelled quite widely, worked, and entered Parliament. The pathetic sneering seems to me simply to be jealousy because she is so popular and won an outright majority at the last election, and for some males it's because she is a woman. I will never forget the likes of the "girl in a skirt" comment – how dare a young, attractive woman think she can be the PM.

    I think the majority of teenagers have worked at 'entry level' to earn some money before they start out on their career choice. It actually teaches them how to interact with others, some of whom may be very different to those they usually mix with. They learn how to listen, follow instructions, and concentrate on their tasks. Good on them.

    • Belladonna 11.1

      The sneering is real.

      The point isn't that teens and young adults shouldn't engage in retail as a first job, to supplement the family income, or to fund tertiary study. That is – in the neo-liberal centre-right rhetoric – a meritorious achievement. For all of the good reasons you've listed.

      Their argument is that this fish and chip outlet is the only place Ardern has ever worked outside the political establishment.

      And is 'evidence' that she is out-of-touch with the realities of those who run businesses, or who's jobs depend on business or trade.

      It's the same level of sneering which is addressed to all MPs who've come through the ranks of political parties, unions or government departments – 'never had a real job'

      [Please note, I'm not agreeing with them – simply explaining the thinking]

    • Hongi Ika 11.2

      Need more skills working in a Fish & Chip Shop cf to working in McDonalds imo.

  12. joe90 12

    Nearly twenty years using the bench to harass, humiliate, and belittle women and girls in open court but it's unfair for “unsubstantiated allegations” to be aired in public.

    Boo-fucking-hoo, arsehole.

    /

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/300548439/embattled-judge-loses-bid-to-have-conduct-inquiry-held-in-private

    • Belladonna 12.1

      My betting is that the judge [not naming or identifying – even though it's well known who it is] will resign – and take the (very) substantial retirement superannuation fund.

      Then claim that 'nothing was ever proven'.

      Judiciary needs to clean house much more effectively, and considerably more quickly.

  13. White Man Behind A Desk on the Hobbit Law 12 years on. Utterly, depressingly brilliant.

    White Man Behind A Desk – The Hobbit Law 12 Years On

  14. SPC 14

    Vladmir Putin and the white race imperialism of the Eastern Christendom. It began with Vladimir of Kiev and conversion to Christendom (so he could marry the daughter of the Byzantine Emperor).

    On the eve of his murderous invasion, Russian President Vladimir Putin delivered a long and rambling discourse denying the existence of Ukraine and Ukrainians, a speech many Western analysts found strange and untethered. Strange, yes. Untethered, no. The analysis came directly from the works of a fascist prophet of maximal Russian empire named Aleksandr Dugin.

    But as the world watches with horror and disgust the indiscriminate bombing of Ukraine, a broader understanding is needed of Dugin’s deadly ideas. Russia has been running his playbook for the past 20 years, and it has brought us here, to the brink of another world war.

    In his magnum opus, “The Foundations of Geopolitics: The Geopolitical Future of Russia,” published in 1997, Dugin mapped out the game plan in detail. Russian agents should foment racial, religious and sectional divisions within the United States while promoting the United States’ isolationist factions. (Sound familiar?) In Great Britain, the psy-ops effort should focus on exacerbating historic rifts with Continental Europe and separatist movements in Scotland, Wales and Ireland. Western Europe, meanwhile, should be drawn in Russia’s direction by the lure of natural resources: oil, gas and food. NATO would collapse from within.

    https://wapo.st/3wvlhsn

    • roblogic 14.1

      Evidently, “Dugin is Putin’s Rasputin”. Here’s an incredible bit of fascist propaganda — deeply heretical against the basic teachings of Christ IMNSHO

  15. Reality 15

    Belladonna makes the point that some people think union reps, public servants and politicians are not 'real' jobs. Very narrow minded and blinkered. There are many cases of politicians from who have had 'real' jobs who are hopeless politicians.

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