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Open mike 24/04/2019

Written By: - Date published: 7:00 am, April 24th, 2019 - 109 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

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 …

109 comments on “Open mike 24/04/2019 ”

  1. Robert Guyton 1

    “What if the culture you grew up in was broken in ways that you didn’t even have words for?”


  2. Robert Guyton 2

    As cultures break down, alcohol consumption rises, so I've read recently. Saying goodbye to a culture and it's practices will be like farewelling a very, very close friend.

    • Robert Guyton 2.1

      "A culture faces and interprets pain, deviance and death. It endows them with meaning; it illuminates how they are a part of the whole and thereby makes them tolerable … The widespread use of alcohol and other central nervous system anaesthetics is directly linked to a decline in culture. The wider their use, the harder it becomes to preserve, renew and invigorate the wisdom that a culture should hold. This doubles back and escalates. Alcoholism spreads when a culture is dying, just as rickets appears when there is no Vitamin D."

      • Augustus 2.1.1

        I know it's a quote, but that makes no sense. A declining culture promotes alcoholism, and the decline will reverse if people drink less alcohol? That's like saying it's getting cold and people dress warmer. If only they didn't, the weather would get warmer again. Cause and effect…

        • Robert Guyton

          I think it's like saying it's getting cold and people drink more alcohol. They feel good for a while but are more likely to suffer death from exposure. Also, a clear mind, rather than one anaesthetised one, is more likely to make a life-saving decision, imo.

          • Augustus

            It reminded me of ACT welfare policy. Persistent unemployment causes benefit dependency. So if we take away the benefit, there is no unemployment.
            Won’t argue re decision making

  3. Dennis Frank 3

    Danyl dropped down the rabbit hole into the la-la land of Treasury, where the boffins had organised a group of 30 to crowd-source the design of the coalition's well-being budget policy: https://thespinoff.co.nz/politics/23-04-2019/peace-rest-and-the-monkey-emoji-moon-playing-heartwork-cards-at-treasury/

    Being clever, they had performed the u-turn from exclusive to inclusive, realised the best way to include typical Labour voters was to operate at their mental level of capability, so they used a method suitable for kindergarten children.

    "You take a deck of Heartwork cards: these are thin, circular, like coasters in mid-range wine bars, only instead of inspirational quotes or vineyard logos they’re printed with sun feelings, moon feelings and needs. You think about a confrontation you’ve had, or a meeting you’re doing to have, and you pick three cards to represent your needs."

    Heartwork is the business consultancy who supplied the method. It "is also a game… in which you learn to talk about your feelings and emotional needs, and this aims to solve the problems of the DEVUCA world by building empathy and psychological safety creating organisational win-win-wins through people-centered product, service and policy design via system leadership."

    "Next you pick three cards to represent the needs of the other person. There are 50 to choose from. They might want (random shuffle): Stability, or Understanding, or Sense-of-team, or Clarity. Now that you’ve defined everyone’s needs – “all human behaviour is a strategy to meet our needs,” Rousseau explains – you simply envision a win-win-win scenario in which everyone’s needs are met."

    "Treasury is working hard to return New Zealand to a pre-neoliberal, prelapsarian state. Next month the government will release its first “Wellbeing Budget”’ It uses the Treasury’s Living Standards Framework, a world leading concept which, Ross informs us, the department has been working on for 18 years. Instead of focusing purely on economic capital the public service, led by Treasury, will seek to grow the country’s human, social and environmental capital."

    Nice curve ball there, Danyl. Prelapsarian is indeed a word. Google defines it thus: characteristic of the time before the Fall of Man; innocent and unspoilt. I'll leave readers to puzzle over whether the definition is sexist or not. Gender equality has gotten ever so complicated after trending non-binary, so I suggest keeping it simple. Would the Fall of Woman be a suitable political topic nowadays, or should we leave as is?

    • Gabby 3.1

      How does it work n praxis franko? Sounds like the kind of management substitute guff you'd have great gnosis of.

      • Dennis Frank 3.1.1

        So you still haven't figured out the difference between practice & praxis?? Even though I gave you the explanation in a single sentence with no long words? Give some thought to the old adage `if at first you don't succeed, try harder'.

        As regards how it works, rebels tend not to get into management so I can't help you from the perspective of operational experience. Best guess: tell them what to do. Always worked perfectly with Labour voters, eh? Anyone else asks why, of course.

  4. Robert Guyton 4

    "Gaelic's attentiveness to place is reflected in its topographical precision. It has a plentiful vocabulary to describe different forms of hill, peak or slope (beinn, stob, dún, cnoc, sròn), for example, and particular words to describe each of the stages of a river's course from its earliest rising down to its widest point as it enters the sea. Much of the landscape is understood in anthropomorphic terms, so the names of topographical features are often the same as those for parts of the body. It draws a visceral sense of connection between sinew, muscle and bone and the land. Gaelic poetry often attributes character and agency to landforms, so mountains might speak or be praised as if they were a chieftain; the Psalms (held in particular reverence in Gaelic culture) talk of landscape in a similar way, with phrases such as the 'hills run like a deer.' In both, the land is recognized as alive."

    Substitute "Maori" for Gaelic.


  5. swordfish 5

    Well, that's pretty damn decisive:

    Colmar Brunton (April 2019)

    Crusaders name change

    Question: “Following the Christchurch terrorist attack, do you think the Crusaders rugby team should change their name?”

    Yes …………. 14%

    No ………….. 76%

    DK …………… 8%

    Refused …… 1%

    Above Average: No

    ▪Those living in Otago and Southland (90%)

    ▪National Party supporters (87%)

    ▪Those aged 18-29 (85%).

    Above Average: Yes

    ▪Those with annual household income $150,000+ (25%).

    ▪Labour Party supporters (22%).

    So … very strong Public support for the Government's Gun Law changes (About Right … 61%, … Not Far Enough … 19% (= 80%), … Goes Too Far … 14%) … but minimal endorsement of Crusaders name change. (Yes, by all means take the necessary practical steps … but Don’t fuck with the Rugby / Don’t fuck with the Culture, basically)

    • Ad 5.1

      And well done to all those Labour supporters with households pulling in over $150,000.


      • Psycho Milt 5.1.1

        You'd be surprised how many there are in that category – a lot of couples with both working in the public sector bring in upwards of $150,000, and plenty of them are Labour or Green voters.

        • Ad

          Not surprised at all PM.

          • swordfish

            The New Middle Class (or Professional and Managerial Class (PMC))

            Especially Public Servants (both Labour & Green voters … although I’m guessing the latter swung heavily to Labour 2017)

            • Ad

              Not so fast. A $150 household is 1x$70k and 1x$80k.

              That's not a new managerial anything.

              The managerial class you are thinking of start with households pulling $300k from salaries, before you get to the rentals.

              • swordfish

                Whoaaaa there, Compardre, Don’t be quite so quick on the draw !

                The category is: 150k Plus !!!

                That 25% might come entirely from the 300K brigade, nested deep within that particular demographic.

                The New Middle Class are precisely the people I'd expect to be most supportive of a name change. Affluent Moral Liberals / Craft Beer Hipsters / People with unusually refined sensibilities who insist on Minimalist Interior Design and the like.

                • Ad

                  It might.

                  But I think you're preparing to describe one of the 8 Tribes of New Zealand, that's the Grey Lynner tribe I think.

                  • OnceWasTim

                    1st World prollims eh?

                    Such is the nature of NuZull's 'Left' these days.

                    It's possible/probable we might all be fucked in the not-too-distant, unless something ‘transformational’ happens [goan forwid]

      • Rapunzel 5.1.2

        Of which ours is one, well until this year when retirement will change that a bit. Earning as much as possible – mainly from my husband's hard work, he likes it fortunately and it keeps him fit – has become a must over recent years so that we can genuinely trickle it down to move people forward. Car repairs, dental visits, bonds for rentals were clear to us not easily obtainable to many young hard workers trying to get traction in the world or those who faced unforeseen "hiccups". Being on one end of "it is better to give than receive" too is not something I am unaware of aware of that an element of "sefishness" is normal in wanting to see good outcomes and to sleep peacefully at night.

        If anyone needs to see National Party desperation and complete cynicism at work page five of our local paper below a heartfelt obituary for local man Tommy Gear and co-founder of NZ First at the outset is somewhat conveniently placed an electoral advert for the National Party. As a consequence our long term subscription has been cancelled and a full discussion had with the staff member who took the cacellation as to why.

        Past experience has me 100% certain, I read the paper daily and these local adverts are now rare, that in no way was the placement "accidental".

        It confirmed all the dislike I have for a political party clearly, to me, interested in votes to retain the parliamentary benches and nothing about working for NZ.

        • Ad

          I knew there had to be more than could be counted on one hand out there. There's got to be a few of us on this site.

          Good luck for falling off the income cliff.

          • Rapunzel

            We're pacing it, money is not "god" but it does have it's uses, beyond that you can't take it with you thought some seem to adhere to that thought. Best are the times we have had along the way and long may that continue:)

    • Robert Guyton 5.2

      "Don’t fuck with the Culture" – see comment #2

      Also, how about 'The Sythians" as an alternative?

    • mauī 5.3

      Very sad. But kiwis political choices haven't been up to much lately. 9 years of steady as she goes destruction case in point.

    • marty mars 5.4

      Awww sad for those people – don't wanna keep their stupid made up name for their made up team – I can't say I'm going to be sorry seeing all these people eat the shit sandwich of change.

    • Shadrach 5.5

      Perhaps the respondents had a better understanding of the wider meaning of the words 'crusader' or 'crusade'. Or maybe, just maybe, people can scoff at the stupidity of all the fuss over events that happened almost 1,000 years ago?

      • bwaghorn 5.5.1

        I reckon its also a push back on the constant need to please the minority .

        Fight the fights worth fighting .

        The left damages it self by chaseing every little cause .

      • mauī 5.5.2

        Since you’re pretty good at wider meanings…. How about an american sports team called the 9 11ers or the WMD’s?

  6. JohnSelway 6

    I don’t know how closely everyone is following the US elections for next year but I have been following the potential nominees are am really liking that Pete Buttigieg. Do you think the US is ready for an openly gay president?

    Also I’m wondering if the Republicans think they’ll lose with Trump will they step-in to remove him (say if his tax returns so him to be a shameless crook)?

    2020 could be very interesting

    • Gabby 6.1

      They're not ready for an openly female president. I reckon they’ll go for a pro wrestler next.

      • greywarshark 6.1.1

        That's very democratic approach. Anyone can be President – and so anyone who has the funding to make a name for himself or her, is having a go. That's the spirit. Perhaps the term should be divided up into quarters like they do in business, and at that time they report their activity and their effectiveness and then get voted in or out, with a sort of list of waiting opportunists who want a turn and are ready to step up if called.

        Reminds me of Brewsters Millions.

    • Andre 6.2

      I reckon the states where being openly gay would reduce his vote are states that are currently solid Repug anyway. That opinion is based on working with manufacturing workforces in Wisconsin and Pennsylvania (admittedly the more liberal parts of those states) and even a couple of decades ago openly gay staff seemed totally accepted.

      So I don't reckon that will directly affect his chances, but the electoral downside in solid red states may be more on tight House and Senate races. If there's a population that leans Dem but are unenthusiastic about the prez candidate, then it's so much harder to deal with the incredible hassle and time-suck involved in voting so it's a whole lot more tempting to just not bother.

      As a candidate for prez, seems to me he needs to learn to spend more time considering the downsides to his policies. This HuffPo piece goes into some detail about issues with the housing policies he came up with and implemented as mayor.

    • Stuart Munro. 6.3

      The natural successor to the Trump presidency would be a Toon. Daffy Duck has the drive but seems aggressive. Jessica Rabbit might make a decent contender – not bad, but drawn that way.

    • Andre 6.4

      Also I’m wondering if the Republicans think they’ll lose with Trump will they step-in to remove him (say if his tax returns so him to be a shameless crook)?

      Let's look at the numbers. Impeachment in the House should probably work, the Dems have a comfortable majority. But to convict Darth Drumpf in the Senate requires 67 votes, and the Dems only have 47 senators, and up to maybe 4 of those might not have the spine to vote for conviction. So between 20 and 25 Repug senators would need to vote for conviction.

      Right now, Mitt Romney probably would vote for conviction, Lisa Murkowski and Susan Collins are definite maybes. The rest of them would look at their political futures, ponder the examples of Jeff Flake, Bob Corker, Mark Sanford and others, and weigh the risk of getting primaried by vengeful Drumpfkins versus the risk of losing to a Democrat in the election.

      There's a maximum of 8 Repug Senators at risk of losing to a Dem in 2020 (Collins being one), and 7 in 2022 (Murkowski being one). So even if all 15 Repugs that could conceivably be at risk of losing to a Dem in their next election plus Mitt Romney plus all Dems vote for conviction, that's still only 63.

      The only way I see Il Douche out of the Oval Office before the 2020 election is either a medical event, or enough info comes out about his criminal exposure to actually penetrate the Supreme Orange Ego's consciousness and he realises he genuinely needs a legitimate pardon, so he negotiates his exit and pardon with Pence.

  7. Siobhan 7

    Its a funny thing..in this household we don't have a TV, so rely on RNZ to keep us in the loop on NZ news…so I was somewhat relieved to hear this the other morning..

    "The New Zealand Disability Support Network says it is thankful to ministers who stepped in to prevent sector-wide funding cuts."..though as we all know, avoiding cuts never actually means that much as costs and demand inevitably rises.

    But then I looked into it further..and sure enough..

    'Every hour is questioned' – Advocates say Health Ministry quietly reducing funding for disabled after ruling out big cuts….

    "Every hour of support is being questioned," said Community Care Trust (CCT) chief executive Mike Brummitt, whose Dunedin-based organisation looked after 280 people. "If someone gets 12 hours, they are saying do you need 10, or eight hours?"

    Brummitt said he was recently informed by email that an intellectually disabled man in his 20s would have his funding cut in half – from $415 a day to $210.

    "We know nobody has seen him since early 2017. No one spoke to our staff, his parents, advocate, no assessment. I've written back and said this is totally unsustainable."

    CCT would continue to provide the same support to him, but at a financial loss.

    The man's needs were complex and he required around-the-clock care, Brummitt said. When the organisation first took him on, he would not sleep in a bed, and curled up on the floor in the fetal position.

    Anyone who can read that, and feel we are on the right path, has no heart.

    "incrementalism" and Budget Responsibility Rules are going to be the death of some of us. Its a shame the disabled don't offer nice photo ops. in the minds of Labour Party spin doctors and publicists.

    And if you can judge a society and people by how it treats its weakest and most vulnerable citizens..how well are we doing?



    • Incognito 7.1

      I was going to suggest copious amounts of alcohol (see @ 2) because our culture is breaking down but then realised that this has been ‘our culture’ for yonks …

    • Ankerrawshark 7.2

      That needs to be looked into Siobhan.

      it is a disgraceful situation.

      keep taking cases like that to the minister.

      • alwyn 7.2.1

        "keep taking cases like that to the minister.".

        She wants it fixed, not ignored. If you send something like this to the Minister it will go straight into the round filing cabinet on the floor by the Minister's desk.

    • Rosemary McDonald 7.3

      We had a wee chat about this the other day Siobahn…and I have read all the emails the reporter refers to.

      I'll add them to the ones I got when I OIA'ed the Misery of Health for details of the work they had done in relation to a 1999 discussion paper called "DSS Advanced Personal Care…" http://www.moh.govt.nz/notebook/nbbooks.nsf/0/ACC68EB427015F0DCC256BF70071DECD/$file/DSS%20advanced%20personal%20care.pdf

      Now in 1999 the industry recognised there was a slight problem in that there was a small but significant number of people needing home based disability supports who needed a higher level of care than would normally be provided by unregulated carers. More registered/enrolled nurse level. My partner and I knew that the Miserly had not yet sorted this issue but had not seen anything in writing that actually defined the problem. Until I found that 1999 document…and until I got a dump of emails from the Misery in response to my OIA request. This was 2017.

      And the bastards still hadn't sorted the problem. Now these are the super efficient bureaucrats Macro was lauding the other day. https://thestandard.org.nz/open-mike-21-04-2019/#comment-1609899

      I still haven't stopped laughing/crying/beating my fists against the wall.

      I wish I could share with you those emails…the file is huge unfortunately…but these are the people on the big salaries getting backslaps from the Commonwealth Fund for their efficiency.

      What the problem boils down to is that these Advanced Personal Cares attract 'risk' if performed by unqualified carers. And the funder (the Miserly) would be liable if for adverse events. So providers most often than not refuse to provide this level of care at the rate at which the MOH funds HCSS. And when challenged, the Ministry bureaucrats just say "we don't fund x,y or z." , even if the client would die without these tasks being performed. Hence family care, or incarceration in a residential facility where theoretically there is RN oversight…

      ACC, on the other hand, get round this problem (I think) by funding 1/2 hour per week per client of RN oversight. The RN does not have to be there…just be available. And to my knowledge, this works.

      But it is a simple solution that is way beyond the ability of those super efficient MOH bureaucrats to accept or implement for those eligible clients that need that level of care.

      But this is super-efficient… as many of those needing this level of care have no option but to turn to family…who are paid nothing (as in my case) or a pittance compared to the NZDSN employed carers.

      This is my world Siobahn, and those people have no heart.

      Someone described them as sociopaths…I tend to agree.

      And it is unlikely to change under this government.

      • Siobhan 7.3.1

        Thank you for that Rosemary.

        I can well imagine the size of your document file.

        And having read of this particular aspect of your life, I really do wish you, and your partner, all the best.

      • Macro 7.3.2

        Rosemary – I completely agree with you about the plight of disabled people in this country, and the lack of care that they receive, and the huge load that that places upon family and friends. The NGO's I know are struggling to make ends meet and the continual lack of funding that has been given to the sector over the years just makes things worse.

        I think you get the wrong end of the stick when you think that I am not supportive of you, and when I say that despite all the problems you and others face, it may not be the bureaucrats who are completely at fault here. Now I too ,agree that many in the upper echelons of the MoH are in ordinary terms overpaid. But that doesn't mean that they are not doing their job properly within the funding constraints that they are given. They are the managers of the system – the governance of the system falls on the government of the day – and unfortunately over the past couple of decades NZers have elected governments that have failed to place a high priority on funding Health and Disability services in particular.

        Looking at this from a macro level there are essentially 3 ways for a country to administer its Health services

        • A fully funded Public Health service (eg UK)
        • A mix of Public and Private Insurance (eg Australia)
        • A completely Private system of Health supported by Insurance (eg the USA)

        The first Labour Govt introduced a health system in the 1935 along the lines of the first model. Over the years that model has been watered down as more affluent individuals have taken out Private Health Insurance. The effect of that has been to reduce pressure on the Government to fully fund Health in this country and over the years the effect has been that Governments fund as minimally as they can, and rely on the Private sector and individuals to pick up the slack. Australia has now a similar system but the difference is that they ensure that all (or most) can afford to back up their Health Insurance so that there is more equity within the system. There is also greater funding available across the Health service.

        We certainly do not want devolve into the Health system of the US which has one of the highest costs and poorest outcomes of any health system in the developed world. Even on Faux News the other day – when Bernie proposed a Medicare for all ( a complete anathema to the Trump administration) he was met with resounding applause.

        • Rosemary McDonald

          “…it may not be the bureaucrats who are completely at fault here. Now I too ,agree that many in the upper echelons of the MoH are in ordinary terms overpaid. But that doesn’t mean that they are not doing their job properly within the funding constraints that they are given. They are the managers of the system – the governance of the system falls on the government of the day – and unfortunately over the past couple of decades NZers have elected governments that have failed to place a high priority on funding Health and Disability services in particular.”

          Hmmm…funny how governments have changed but the culture within the Ministry has largely remained the same?
          I too used to blame ‘the Government’, until reading about the estimated cost of paying family carers should we “all come out of the woodwork” and demand to be paid like any other carer providing assessed supports. In 2008…under Labour…the estimated cost (as told to the HRRT) of paying family carers was between $17-593 million dollars.
          Now let that sink in a minute…this is the very best the Ministry of Health could do by way of a guesstimate? This was 2006-2008…not exactly the dark ages and even then the NASCs were collecting data on all clients.
          Even when all was lost through the Judicial system, (under National now, in 2012) and with the omnipotent Socrates database well established, the Minister was still making dire predictions of fiscal apocalypse should there be unrestrained payment of family members providing assessed care of those with high and very high support needs.
          I almost, (but not quite) felt sorry for Ryall as he demonstrated to the media cameras his appalling lack of knowledge of New Zealand’s disability system. ‘Eek, shriek!”, he implied,’..and if you factor in ACC, you’ll see how the costs just go up and up!’..Stupid bugger didn’t even know that ACC had been paying family carers for over a decade…in fact 50% of the paid carers of ACC clients were family. So who was feeding this pile of twaddle to the Government Minister?
          Yet it was next door to impossible to even get anything close to an actual number of MOH:DSS clients, over the age of 18 with assessed high and very high support needs who were not receiving any funding for their care because family were providing most or all of their care. It wasn’t that the information wasn’t there…it was that the Ministry wasn’t offering it willingly and the Government seemed unable to ask the right questions of the Ministry.
          There was talk of there being 30,000….(the latest count of the total number of DSS clients is 33,000.https://www.health.govt.nz/system/files/documents/publications/report-clients-allocated-dss-funding-jul17.pdf) Frustrated, I asked a few specific questions of MOH DSS in late 2012 to try to get a more accurate picture of the situation, and it transpired that the number of very high needs over 18 year old DSS clients with little or no hourly based funding for their care was 1286.
          And if you’ve followed this particular case…through the many court hearings and discussions etc you will know that the National Government opted to fund 1600 parent carers.
          And if you also followed up you’ll know that the number of DSS clients who chose the option of Funded Family Care was less than 400. One quarter of the number budgeted for…so what happened to the rest of the $$$?
          Some of us have kept track over the years, through different governments and different Ministers. There have been two constants…one, the Ministers have been largely ignorant ineffectuals and two, the same old names keep being mentioned in MOH dispatches.
          Only a complete purge of MOH bureaucrats will bring about the necessary culture change. The Ministry needs to be staffed by actual Public Servants.
          And I do think you do the NZ voter a disservice by implying that we keep voting in Governments that fail to “… to place a high priority on funding Health and Disability services in particular.”
          How about we have a referendum..”Would you be willing to pay an extra 1.5-2.5% tax which would be dedicated solely to rehabilitating our health and disability system, in addition to the current Vote Health budget?”

  8. Robert Guyton 8

    "In talks, I would tell the story of the Natufians. Late in the last Ice Age, in the territory marked on our maps as Israel and Palestine, they lived in year-round villages. They were among the first people anywhere to settle and they lived like this for 1,500 years, fifty generations, long enough for any memory of their ancestors’ wanderings to pass into the dreamtime of gods and culture heroes. Then came the Younger Dryas, the 1,200-year cold snap that turned Europe back to tundra and broke the pattern of the seasons which watered the wooded valleys in which they had made their homes. They knew nothing of the processes by which this climate change had come upon them; it was not a consequence of their actions, only a shift in the weather. Within a short time, they abandoned their settled way of life and became wandering gatherers and hunters, returning to the old villages only to rebury the bones of their dead in the ruins of the houses.

    Then I would recall a passage in After the Ice, Stephen Mithen’s history of the prehistoric world, where I first learned about the Natufians. He sends a time-traveller to walk unobserved through the lives of the people he is writing about: coming upon a band of late Natufian nomads, he follows them to a gathering in one of the ruined villages. The interment of bones is accompanied by storytelling, feasting and celebration; the connection between past and present is reaffirmed. In Mithen’s reconstruction, these days of festival offer a respite from the hardships of the present. Yet afterwards, as the people go back out onto the land, they do so gladly: ‘They are all grateful for the return to their transient lifestyle within the arid landscapes of the Mediterranean hills, the Jordan valley and beyond. It is, after all, the only lifestyle they have known and it is the one that they love.’"


    • Gabby 8.1

      How did they make their alcohol?

      • Robert Guyton 8.1.1

        Buried calabashes of fermented fruit, mapped with a story, retrieved when needed.

    • Dennis Frank 8.2

      I got that Mithen book last year, haven't started it yet. "If everyone does X, then all this scary stuff will go away" is typical leftist thought. Proceeds from a false assumption. Since when have humans ever acted in unison?? Anyway, moving on, we could liken the climate-change impact on expectations to oceanic navigation of old.

      I'm no sailor, but I know plain sailing only lasts awhile. Adaption to changing weather is essential. Using ocean currents is intelligent. People don't usually do it unless they have a plan, or at least an imagined destination of sorts, so when there's a small tribe in the waka collective intent drives the enterprise.

      This is turning into a typical `how to get there' post so I'll just finish by pointing out how suitable the analogy seems to be. Despair isn't part of the scenario!!

  9. esoteric pineapples 9

    Trump's dementia is getting progressively worse – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LCManQJHekc&feature=share

    • Dennis Frank 9.1

      Yet more leftist hypocrisy? Only if the prof is a leftist. Mentally-ill folk are now part of the community. We're meant to view them as normal citizens, ever since politically-correct decision-making deemed this stance proper in the nineties. As such, they have citizens' rights, including the right to be a political leader. It's how democracy works.

      The prof may get brain police knocking on his door sometime soon, taking him away to a re-education camp, where some kind person will explain the facts of life to him, and he will be required to write this line a thousand times: I must not discriminate against the mentally ill, not even Trump.

      • marty mars 9.1.1

        "Mentally-ill folk are now part of the community."

        They always were dennis you just ignored and pretended they weren't there. You do seem to have some major prejudice against those you deem to have mental health issues and your writing on this subject is woeful. Even here in defending you make snide asides about those trying to protect the many many people with mental health issues. You should be ashamed imo.

        • Dennis Frank

          Crap, Marty. Everyone knows they were institutionalised until the closing of the mental hospitals. And don't insinuate prejudice where none exists. That's unethical. You know perfectly well that I did not criticise any victim. Any reader can see for themselves that I was criticising the prof!

          • marty mars

            "We're meant to view them as normal citizens, ever since politically-correct decision-making deemed this stance proper in the nineties."

            These type of statements from you indicate a strange attitude imo. You love 'othering' those with mental health issues using language like 'them' and 'they' and you don't even get it – possibly an age thing but whatever – not a good attitude imo

            • Dennis Frank

              Not strange unless you have no empathy with victims. When that guy was killed with an axe by his flatmate (a mental-health patient released into the community) while in bed (asleep, I presume), a story that made headlines back then, it made the policy seem insane to me. Not to you??

          • solkta

            Talking out of your arse is what you were doing. Obviously having the POTUS suffering from dementia is an issue that would need addressing.

            • Dennis Frank

              In regard to hitting the red button, you have a point. I vaguely recall there's a fail-safe design around that though (chain-of-command operational consensus).

              In all other respects, you're wrong. If it were obvious, there would already be high-level discussions on a bipartisan basis, reported in the media. So you're just doing the same jerk-off as the prof. Evidence to the contrary required!

              • Andre

                I vaguely recall there's a fail-safe design around that though (chain-of-command operational consensus).

                No. There isn't. There really isn't.

                When Nixon was showing obvious signs of stress leading those around him to fear a breakdown, Schlesinger committed an act of gross insubordination and instructed those further down the chain of command to check with him or Kissinger before acting on any orders from Nixon. Thank fuck it was never tested what would actually happen if Nixon tried to launch nukes.

                There's a good chance Mattis did the same, and I'd guess it would be fairly likely those down the chain of command would actually check with Mattis before launching.

                But Mattis is gone, and the acting Secretary of Defense is ex-Boeing swampthing Shanahan. Who almost certainly wouldn't dare do anything that might be construed as standing up to Grand Generalissimo Bonespurs. Nor would he have any standing or respect from those further down the chain, so it would be very unlikely Shanahan would be able to stop a madman launch order even if he wanted to.

          • KJT

            Everyone knows “they” were institutionalised’
            No. “they” were not.
            The vast majority of people with mental health issues led normal functional contributing lives.
            DF. You are full of prejudice and misinformation. Otherwise known as full of shit.

      • greywarshark 9.1.2

        Just to change the topic for a break.
        some kind person will explain the facts of life to him, and he will be required to write this line a thousand times:
        That made me think of Bart Simpson and his frequent interaction with lines written on the blackboard. (Did you know he leapt up in ballet showing amazing talent. You might wait for the same to happen with Trump, but truth is stranger than fiction.)


        • Dennis Frank

          Heh. I'm going to be off-line awhile. My laptop has developed sleep problems halfway thro its 6th year, so I got a cheap notebook as insurance policy & now have to get all my useful stuff duplicated onto it in case the laptop decides to die as well. Fortunately my local computer dudes always seem able to solve my problems quickly at reasonable cost…

  10. marty mars 10

    What a hero!!!

    The UK government’s active support for fossil fuels and airport expansion is “beyond absurd”, Greta Thunberg has told MPs.

    The 16-year-old Swedish student, who sparked a global youth-based movement when she began a “climate strike” outside Sweden’s parliament last year, gave a typically blunt speech. She told MPs: “This ongoing irresponsible behaviour will no doubt be remembered in history as one of the greatest failures of humankind.”


    The dreaming continues from the rear guard protecting their world from the inevitable change occuring. They will be remembered all right as will we. What will they say about what you/we did to change?

    • alwyn 10.1

      Why don't you tell us the rest of the story? After talking to the MPs she went straight back to the Airport and caught her next flight to a place where she could spread the word that flying must stop.

      You know. Just like James Shaw it is a case of don't do what they do. Do what they tell you to do because they know better.

      • marty mars 10.1.1

        I'd rather she flew than you and your ilk with your selfish overseas holidays and pretend work functions.

      • Molly 10.1.2

        "After talking to the MPs she went straight back to the Airport and caught her next flight to a place where she could spread the word that flying must stop."

        Did she? Can you link to this information, because AFAIK she attends meetings by land-based travel.

        And also, your criticism – well used by practised diverters, fails to recognise that current society and systems support and encourage individual choices both financially and in convenience, that are detrimental to the environment and community wellbeing.

        The premise that the system needs to change stands – separate from individual instances.

      • Koff 10.1.3

        She doesn't fly, Alwyn. She only travels by train or someone else's electric car.

      • Psycho Milt 10.1.4

        After talking to the MPs she went straight back to the Airport and caught her next flight to a place where she could spread the word that flying must stop.

        If you actually bother to go and read the article, it includes a graphic: "Greta's train journey through Europe." Electric trains, at that.

        • alwyn

          She may have arrived in London by train as that diagram shows. However you don't think she was going to remain there did you?

          I was assured, by someone who heard her, that she was heading back to Sweden by plane. As I said "After talking to MPs." I'll admit that the statement "went straight back to the airport" rather condenses the time scale.

          • marty mars

            caught out lying again alwyn to push your climate change denial agenda – what a fail

          • Andre

            Do you have any actual evidence or link? Or are you just repeating a hearsay smear?

            If there were any factual basis to that claim, it would be astonishing for right-wing media to be silent, they would be much more likely to scream it from the front page as hypocrisy to try to discredit her. But so far … zip.

          • Gabby

            Was Lardy Williams or the Horeskin that little someone wally?

  11. Molly 11

    Māori television showed a documentary on the work of photographer Sebastião Salgado a couple of nights ago. I missed seeing it at the International Film Festival, and was hooked when I found it while channel surfing.

    It documents his decades of travelling and immersion into some of the most undeveloped and/or deprived communities. As well as capturing some of the most atrocious human behaviours and crimes. A harrowing but very informative watch, which also records his understandably bleak conclusion of the irredeemable nature of the human race.

    The final project is his personal redemption – a trite description – moving into nature photography and planting millions of trees on an inherited drought ridden family farm.

    It is on demand for a week or so – if anyone wants to view: The Salt of the Earth

  12. Drowsy M. Kram 12

    A very minor observation – disappointed to hear Lisa Owen (RNZ Checkpoint, ~5:24 pm, 23 April 2019) refer to the Government's 'Provincial Growth Fund' as "Shane Jones' regional money bag" (@00:25).


  13. Observer Tokoroa 13

    Lisa Owen is a grubby little number.

    Could someone from RNZ unravel her cussed little tidbits ?

    Or is that beyond the realms of the highly paid warts posing as unbiased creeps ?

    The Nice Lady who gives Lisa Owen the news might lower her voice Pitch. Lower from squeaky high to Baritone. Please.

  14. Observer Tokoroa 14

    Hi Psycho Milt

    You a bit out of sorts today? Simon getting to be a bit much for you perhaps. He seems to have Psycho problems like yourself.

    Even so, advising the Regions that you hate them receiving Funds for Major works and Projects – could mean that you dislike Aoteraroa from top to bottom. You will be no Loss.

    • If you're going to capitalise nouns, please capitalise all of them (or better yet, just don't capitalise nouns – we're writing English, not German).

      Just to clarify: billion-dollar regional growth fund = good, putting an influence-peddler in charge of deciding who gets the funding = bad.

  15. alwyn 15

    I am pleased to see that there is consistency in the complaints about racist behaviour. Here we have someone, rightfully, being shamed because he claimed that he wouldn't allow his children to go out with a Maori.


    I wonder if the protesters were the same ones who complained about Hone Harawira expressing the view that he wouldn't allow his children to go out with a Pakeha? I hope they were the same people involved in both protests about the bigoted actions.


  16. greywarshark 16



    Immigration New Zealand has created a special visa category for those directly impacted by the shootings at Al Noor Mosque and Linwood mosque, as well as their families…

    The government says the Christchurch Response 2019 category has been created to realise the impact of the tragedy and to give people currently on temporary and resident visas some certainty.

    Applications can be made from tomorrow by anyone who was present at either mosque during the attacks and their immediate families.

    The special circumstances mean the definition of "immediate family" also includes dependent children, someone's partner's parents and grandparents of children under 25.

    Immigration NZ, on their website, state they will confirm those present at the mosque attacks by checking police records.

  17. greywarshark 17

    Trump and the USA show themselves as a dysfunctional government with conservative religiosity at its roots.


    The UN has backed a resolution on combatting rape in conflict but excluded references in the text to sexual and reproductive health, after vehement opposition from the US.

    The resolution passed by the security council on Tuesday after a three-hour debate and a weekend of fierce negotiations on the language among member states that threatened to derail the process.

    The vote was carried 13 votes in favour. China and Russia abstained. On Monday, the US had threatened to veto the resolution but it is understood that last minute concessions on Tuesday morning got the US on side

  18. lprent 18

    Changed the comment editor tool library and style again.

    • lprent 18.1

      Pretty weird how the size of the control hasn’t changed… aaaaaaaaaaaaa bbbbbbbbbb ccccccccccc dddddddddd

      Ok the wrapping works – fine – it just doesn’t have the right border???

      Doesn’t do that on the test system.

      • Jenny - How to get there? 18.1.1

        Hi Lynne

        I am only able to write very short sentences like this. Anything longer goes into the spam trap. Or once even directed back to the ‘Policy’.

        I can put up links, but only if I make no supporting comment.

        I suspect that this is some sort of technical glitch.

        Any advice?

  19. OnceWasTim 19

    Not a few months ago, I was considering rejoining the Labour Parte
    Then this struck me: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8SV85NVP1nc

    Could just as easily be Pulla Bent’s Neshnool as Grunt Robitson’s Labia

  20. gsays 20

    At the mention of labia, I couldn’t resist:https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=B4437BxAHB4
    I recall it being funny in the ’80s.

  21. gsays 21

    hah, so much for that, Hercules Returns was made in 1993.
    a funny aussie movie.

  22. Some Eco Maori Music for the minute .

  23. We have to CHANGE the way we do everything this is a good idea that the local and central government should be championing a place were you can rent tool & equipment for little cost. All so I had to DUMP a good washing machine and fridge because they couldn’t fit in my pocket as that’s the only storage that was available. I would have had a garage sale as we call it here and sold some items a give some away but the sandflys have scared all the people away . I say local council needs to have a place well advised to drop off good still going fine like whiteware kitchen ware anything that can be used by other.
    We need to get away from the USE and toss it culture we need to make things last 20 years or longer paper packaging to.
    Aristotle House in Oxford is not as grand as it sounds. A commercial block built by the canal in the 1960s, it is no longer fit for paying tenants, so its owner, Wadham College, allows a group of social enterprises to stay there, like official squatters. And there’s evidence of their enterprise everywhere outside, from the drop-box for returning poetry books, to the compost heaps built from old pallets, and the young Victoria plum tree blossoming in a pot by the door. Inside, for those who know about it, is the Oxfordlibrary of things. It sounds like the setting for a Philip Pullman novel, and represents a vision of humanity that’s nearly as fantastical – an idea so simple and so brilliant that, the first time you hear it, you wonder why it hasn’t conquered the world already. Then you wonder if it’s just about to change. Imagine you have a grimy old picnic table that needs sanding after a winter in the garden. Or you want to host a Eurovision party, but your TV is too small for everyone to see. Commercially renting a belt sander for the weekend costs about £40, and a projector much more, so unless you’re on good terms with a well-equipped neighbour, you either spend money on a device you will hardly use, or you give up. But what if someone volunteered to be that neighbour, as people now have in Frome, Crystal Palace, Stirling, Edinburgh, Totnes, Oxford and in growing numbers around the world? If they could just gather a collection of extremely, but only occasionally, useful items, and find a place to keep them, there would be no need for everyone else to buy their own. Even paying a small fee to cover costs, we would save money, and space in our homes, and the benefits to the environment in waste prevented would be enormous. Indeed, as you browse for Oxford’s belt sander (£8 a week) and projector (£10 a night), you might decide, while you’re at it, to borrow a pressure washer for the patio (£10 a day), and add a disco ball (£5 a week) and chocolate fountain (ditto) for the party. You’ll live a cheaper, cleaner, more enjoyable and more sustainable life Ka kite ano link below.

  24. Here you go Whanau we have people who treat water like a gravy train instead of the respecting WAI water as a life giving and taking source and force it is they need to protect Wai water for our next generation our Mokopuna grandchildren rights to a happy healthy life need to be respected.

    The Queensland minister for water, Anthony Lynham, also strongly denied his government had backed EAA’s sale of overland flows, as Joyce claimed.

    “What we had supported in 2015 was completely different,” he said. Queensland proposed the Commonwealth buy both of EAA’s farms and all its water, including river water rights, he said.

    A desktop review had put the price at $123m, and would have yielded 57,000ML of water including more secure water rights, he said.

    Instead Joyce proceeded to buy half the volume of a less reliable type of water entitlement for $80m

    Queensland minister for water, Anthony Lynham, also strongly denied his government had backed EAA’s sale of overland flows, as Joyce claimed.

    “What we had supported in 2015 was completely different,” he said. Queensland proposed the Commonwealth buy both of EAA’s farms and all its water, including river water rights, he said.

    A desktop review had put the price at $123m, and would have yielded 57,000ML of water including more secure water rights, he said.

    Instead Joyce proceeded to buy half the volume of a less reliable type of water entitlement for $80m

    Meanwhile the Guardian has learned that the energy minister, Angus Taylor, was listed in the annual report of the Australian company as a director of the Caymans parent, Eastern Australia Irrigation, at least until some time in the 2012-13 financial year. He was also a director of a second Caymans company, Agricultural Managers Ltd, which served as the management company for the fund.

    Agricultural Managers Ltd, which is separate from Eastern Australian Agriculture and Eastern Australian Irrigation, provided management services to the complex investment structure that included several overseas investorsUsually management companies in these sort of securitised structures undertake the financing, advise on tax, prepare documentation and send investors payments. For that they are paid a management fee and in some cases a fee based on the performance of the fund. This can occur during the life of the fund or when it was wound up.

    Ka kite ano links below


  25. Eco Maori can see this huge problem unfolding before my EYES The wealthy made most of their money from burning CARBON. The effects of climate change is going to CAUSE huge problems for the common poor people that is WHY the WEALTHY nations need to step up and help the poor Nation it is the correct way to help lesson the damage caused by the climate change on the POOR.

    The wealthy have to realise that we are all HUMANS geneticly identical. If they don't help a super bug could develop in the places we're the poor people are living in unhumane places that could effect people that are close to them.

    The Great old saying is its better cheaper not to make a MESS that it is to make a big MESS and try to CLEAN IT UP not rocket science just LOGIC Hence helping thy NABOUR the super wealth just have to do more to help mitigate Climate change 9

    While the rich world braces for future climate change, the poor world is already being devastated by it

    (CNN) — "Upside down" are the only words Manush Albert Alben has to describe life after the powerful Cyclone Idai.

    Nearly two weeks since the powerful cyclone destroyed most of the city of Beira, Mozambique, it is a long way from normal. "There's no money, no groceries," Alben, a fisherman, said while sitting in his wooden pirogue on a local beach. "We are suffering but trying to hold on

    Known for its busy port and views of the Indian Ocean, the 19th-century city used to be the fourth largest in the country. Now Beira will go down in history as being "90% wiped out" by global warming, said Graça Machel, a former Mozambican freedom fighter, politician and deputy chair of The Elders, who spoke to CNN on the phone after visiting the city

    Link below Ka kite ano


  26. Here is a story of poor country's being badly effected by HUMAN CAUSED CLIMATE CHANGE. We have to help them all.

    South Africa floods claim 60 lives after Durban rains

    'We couldn't save the children'
    One man, who lost eight of his family members when a mudslide swallowed their home, has spoken to Nomsa Maseko about the moments leading up to the tragedy

    Thamsanqa Dlamini said that he heard a loud bang first before water came "gushing" into their house through the walls.

    "I heard my children screaming from the bedroom," he recalled.

    "I tried to rush to help them but the strong water current forcefully pushed me into another room and I was under the collapsed wall.

    Ka kite ano P.S don't let all the other stories drown out our fight against climate change deniers


  27. Kia ora Newshub .

    Its cool the Prince is visiting Aotearoa. Those Kiwis cycling around Turkey look a bit worn out ANZAC day has been cool .

    The helicopter rescue crew that were on the one that crashed in the Auckland islands were extremely lucky if they were a few km out in Tangaroa they would have been much worse off I no the waters cold there its was snowing at sea when I was last there . The Karapeoro shooting is a sham Iv been in that pie shop a few times over the years .

    Britain getting some of Huawei 5G equipment no I don't think NZ have ban Huawei totally from building our 5G network ???????.

    Bad luck on the moon landing in 3s there are a lot of Phenomenon that scientists can not explain or give the fact on .

    Yes tamariki need to have boundaries on screen time on cellphone tablet use the same as everything. Ka kite ano

  28. Some Eco Maori Music for the minute

    Eco Maori viewers are not just Tamariki muppets why are you trying so hard to stop my post????

  29. Some Eco Maori Music for the minute

    Whanau I go outside a the elictric AVENUE starts up sandflys driving around the block

  30. Some Eco Maori Music for the minute .

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