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Open mike 24/06/2019

Written By: - Date published: 7:00 am, June 24th, 2019 - 226 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 …

226 comments on “Open mike 24/06/2019”

  1. Rosemary McDonald 1

    Hi di hi campers!

    Just a shout out to Matthew Tukaki and the Maori Council calling for an inquiry into Pharmac.  I'm on my phone so can't link to a media article but a quick scan shows a number of outlets have covered this.

    I know some here believe Pharmac is some strange breed of sacred cow that is above question and beyond criticism, but it would seem it has become mired in its own ''cheap at any cost' policy and be damned how many kiwis are left harmed or worse.

    Hopefully someone of Tukaki's heft can prompt a complete investigation and hopefully an overhaul.   10 million increase in funding…what a joke.

    • Kay 1.1


      I believe this is what you wanted Rosemary? 🙂  Obviously I'm following all of this with vested interest. 

      I'll also include this story that popped up this morning connected to the drama I'm involved in. 


      Note the Pharmac rep's response- that's the official Party Line they are quoting to everyone on this topic- media, politicians, and every letter we send them, no matter what the question. They simply won't budge, even though it's a load of bullshit, ie they're are blatently lying to everyone. 

      Our Minister of Health is too scared to question them, Pharmac are refusing to respond to OIA requests or talk to journalists. They are indeed, like you say Rosemary, considered some sort of sacred cow by Governments and seemingly unanswerable to anyone and the public should be really worried about this. And don't get me started on the dodgy and highly unethical "research" they're relying on to justify their decisions in order to supposedly save money. Politicians will not respond to any letters from concerned parties about this particular drug switch. Not the minister of Health, Finance (funding), or Transport (licencing concerns). And they wonder why people are giving up on the democratic process in this country? One person I know caught up in this battle has the PM as her local MP and has been refused any advocacy assistance for her young daughter who is about to be affected by this drug switch. Go figure. Compassionate and caring government?


      • Rosemary McDonald 1.1.1

        Thank you Kay.  In theory I should be able to link to an article on my smartish phone…but it is beyond me.

        Serious question.

        Is this an issue that could benefit by having the steely eye of the Office of the Ombudsman cast over it?

        Refusing to respond to OIA requests is simply unacceptable.  Has Pharmac pulled the 'commercial sensitivity' line?  They are funded by the taxpayer….therefore answerable and accountable.

        • higherstandard

          They do publish answers in response to OIAs albeit with some redactions and not in a timely fashion.


          • Kay

            @Higherstandard- thank you for that link. very interesting… especially the number of submissions recieved. Only 17 consumers, I can tell you why that is- Pharmac made NO attempt at all to inform us of their intentions, yet alone submissions were open. So unless one was a avid follower of their website or had the right contacts, there was no opportunity to submit. I found out by pure chance 3 days before submissions closed so managed to get one in, otherwise I'd be none the wiser. Frontline pharmacies or GPs, ie the ones who actually have contact with the people directly affected were not informed. 

            How many other medication changes has this happened with? You might be affected next, do you want to be able to at least make a submission, even if they are going to ignore you? Something else you should all be worried about.

    • Bearded Git 1.2

      Beware…this smacks of lobbying by Big Pharma.

      • Rosemary McDonald 1.2.1

        Beware we get so caught up with well founded concerns over Big Pharma's nefarious influence and ignore the fact that in the case of the epilepsy meds….there is well tested evidence that the Pharmac favoured generic is simply not as efficacious as the one some are using.  A change could very well be devasting. 

        Kay provided link to the ODT article BG….did you show her the respect of actually reading it?  How about the letter from Mefsafe to Pharmac over the same issue?

        • Bearded Git

          The problem for Pharmac is it has to choose between treating 5 people for one illness at $60000 a year or 1 person with another illness at $300000 a year……there will always be people shouting for the expensive drugs….my understanding is that Pharmac is extremely cost effective for the nation as a whole….anything that threatens it may massivrly escalate costs to the taxpayer….Big Pharma will be onto this like a shot.

          • Sacha

            And our nation's limited overall health budget can extend one older person's life for another few months or prevent childhood illness in hundreds. Not an easy decision but also not hard.

            Expensive drugs are not the best value for money in healthcare – unless you are a drug company.

            • Rosemary McDonald

              So, $3-4000 pw to keep an ACC high tetraplegic's arse in good nick….but how much per week to fund the epilepsy medicine with proven efficacy for patients like Kay and others?

              And of course it's all about best value for money…unless you're the one facing having to go to Give a little to fund the one drug that controls your epilepsy.

              Sorry, Kay.  Tough shit it is from the TS ' community.


              • Kay

                Don't be sorry Rosemary. Some people just don't want to understand some things. Honestly, right now no-one understands Pharmac anyway. Anyway, maybe they're not personally affected right now but inevitably the actions of Pharmac plus their funding issues eventually will. This fight just isn't over lamotrigine for me, it's bigger than that. 

              • Sacha

                There is much more to health than medicine. This year we've seen a concerted attack on Pharmac backed covertly by the big drug companies.

                If there is extra to invest in health, let's compare the possibilites across the whole system rather than obey the loudest scrum.

                I can believe that while still caring about the people who do need drugs, and supporting putting more in Pharmac's kitty.

          • Kay

            BG-In that case we should all be asking why Pharmac isn't getting any funding increases.

            And BG, I had that same "understanding" for many years myself. I was even quite accepting of that fact that a small group of people in NZ weren't going to get access to the really new epilepsy drugs that have been available overseas for years because they're bloody expensive, so that the majority of us have access to the long proven ones. I have really conflicted thoughts on that now, knowing some people who badly need the opportunity to try them but can't, but can see the other view. 

            In this situation it's not a case of we're trying to get a drug that isn't available in NZ- it's taking away the funding for one that's been here for 25 years and is actually SAVING the taxpayer a lot of money. Yeah, that old story of let's save what money we can and let some other department pick up the tab. This drug keeps a lot of people of benefits, working, and out of hospital. Switching brands is a high risk exercise and not everyone is going to come through this unscathed. I'm glad you're fine with this.

            • Sacha

              "we should all be asking why Pharmac isn't getting any funding increases"

              Indeed. I suspect that because this govt has freshly handed Pharmac control of DHB purchasing, savings from there are expected to generate extra funds to spend elsewhere. As usual, they have been utterly shit at communicating this.

              The govt may also be trying not to reward blatant manipulation of the system, though pragmatically why not just tip in some extra and improve their communications activity about it? And remove direct marketing of meds to consumers like every other nation but the US?

              • greywarshark

                Yes, you gummint weaklings, stand up to big pharma.   If you had a deal to compensate for lesser prices haggled for of meds then say that we seek to be spending much with you, and we are only making a rod for own backs by enabling you to push product, often expensive medicine for temporary time.   

                Also gummint, have a plan about how long expensive life-extending medicine will be provided.    It's not easy, coming to terms with suddenly short lifespans. 

                A relation of mine left his wife short of savings after funding his own life extending medicine for some time.    He was being short-changed by life and he was going to see that he got all he was due for.   She is left okay, but with careful co-operation enabling family to be helped and her to manage her motherly role to children and grand-children, and mother.

                • Rosemary McDonald

                  So…you get sick or injured…no treatment, no care…you get better or you die?

                  Have I got that right?

                  No one gets any medicine.  No one gets any surgery.  No one gets their broken bones set and no one has radio or chemo therapy.


                  More $$$$ for the privileged master race's pensions.

                  • greywarshark

                    Rosemary McD   You tend to the hyperbole, and claim you are entitled because of unfair treatment by the authorities.  Then you pick fights with others here as to perceived slights alleging they have hurt your sensitive side.   It seems to me that most people here have been kind and supportive to you so why can't you punch a pillow when you feel aggressive and appreciate being heard here?

                    • Rosemary McDonald

                      Goodness gracious me.  A right royal bollocking from the self appointed keeper of  standards on The Standard.

                      Methinks you might be in need of another outlet yourself.wink

            • Bearded Git

              Agree that the government should be communicating level of Pharmac expenditure better Kay. There should be a debate as to what level it should be.

    • One Two 1.3


      The study in question didn'treceive any Pharmac funding.

      However, the listeners are right

      Prof Petrie has received a series of grants from the Health Research Council Pharmac partnership and Pharmac itself

      The industry funded resource generates the obligatory smear against vulnerable mental health sufferers…

      It's all in their heads

      • Kay 1.3.1

        Mediawatch were approached by a friend of Petrie's with that story (I asked). The timing was beyond coincidental.

        • One Two

          Absolutely intentional…and in my opinion…intended to do harm.

          News and media is scripted well in advance, excepting allowance for breaking news

          So there is little to no room for such coincidence.

          Same tactics can be observed regularly…most often to do with medical related subject matter…


      • Incognito 1.3.2

        There is no “smear”. The only smear is coming from you. You obviously did not read the conclusions of the academic paper, which warn against “adverse outcomes” caused by media reporting.

        Which “resource” is “industry funded”, according to you?

        It seems to me you’re barking at every passing car as well as up the wrong tree. Do you have the interests of “vulnerable mental health sufferers” at heart because your uninformed biased comments could do a lot of harm in the same way media reporting could.

        • McFlock

          Everything 1-2 disagrees with is a massive conspiracy.

        • Rosemary McDonald

          I'm sure we have been here before, but never mind. 

          One reason why reports of adverse effects etc increase after media attention could just as easily be due to folks feeling more able to report said effects because they were not the only one experiencing said effects. 

          Fear of being told it is all in your head must be strong, especially for those struggling with mental illness.


          • One Two
            • Pharmac decides to swap drugs for various illnesses including mental illness
            • Pharmac gets pushback and bad press resulting from concerns by vulnerable groups 
            • Reported adverse reactions from drug swap are published


            • Pharmac sponsored professor has study published in the media saying research shows… it's in their heads..

            Apparently too tricky for some to make that rather obvious connection…

          • Incognito

            The point is that media reporting can have effects going both ways but according to a scientific study reported in a peer-reviewed scientific journal, i.e. the best evidence we currently have, the media reporting has “adverse outcomes”:

            Of particular concern is how media reports of increases in suicidal thoughts and loss of drug efficacy following a drug switch can be readily converted in similar complaints across the wider community. More research is also required on how such media reports are associated with increases in non-adherence and non-persistence with medication, as well as possible increases in suicidal behaviour. Future work may also be needed to develop guidelines for media reporting on generic switches with a view to avoiding these adverse outcomes.


            You are free to ignore these findings and believe the biased nonsense spouted by One Two, whose credentials are obscure, BTW.

            Absolutely intentional…and in my opinion…intended to do harm.

            FFS! No evidence, no information, no argument, just biased opinion! IMHO, of course. I await a long comment full of more nonsense and the usual put-downs …

            • McFlock

              Ignoring 1-2 as a pointless jerk, the use of generics and substitutes is an interesting question. With substitutes, some people will miss out for the cost-effectiveness, and those QALYs need to be made up with the saved money elsewhere (otherwise the saving is negative to overall wellbeing).

              The question about generics and placebo/nocebo is a bit more complex, though. On the one hand, there is no chemical change – it's simply the label on the bottle. On the other hand, e.g. asthmatics might report that the generic inhalers aren't as effective as the branded versions, and the bottles don't last as long. My personal interpretation  is that the bottles don't last as long because they're double-puffing because nocebo, but that still should be factored into the expenditure/wellbeing equation. Unless the saving is greater than the cost of higher quantities of prescribed medication due to nocebo effects, it's not a more efficient expenditure.


              • Kay

                 "On the one hand, there is no chemical change – it's simply the label on the bottle"

                If it were that simple we wouldn't be in this battle. The actual drug chemical might be the same (bioequivilence) but the binding agents never are (bioavailability) and it's the latter which has the potential to affect how drugs can metabolise. It's not a big issue with a lot of medications- chopping and changing different brands of paracetamol for example doesn't tend to affect people, but heavy duty brain drugs taken long term- like anticonvulsants, antidepressants etc, for a lot of people it's really noticable. Even a tiny shift in the drug levels can wreck havoc. That's why there's established international guidelines in place about NOT switching epilepsy meds that are also being ignored.

                • higherstandard

                  'That's why there's established international guidelines in place about NOT switching epilepsy meds that are also being ignored.'



                  Interesting in this case even Medsafe has advised PHARMAC that switching this medication in patients with epilepsy is against best practice. They are however determined to proceed.


                  • Kay

                    Yes- we have our drug safety agency telling our drug funding agency it's not a good idea. Whom would you be more inclined to trust?  

                    Our Government trusts the funders. Go figure.


                • Incognito

                  Even a tiny shift in the drug levels can wreck [sic] havoc.

                  Are you referring to steady-state levels in the circulation or in the brain? Do you have any evidence to support this in the context of generic vs. branded drug?

                  • Kay

                    Have you ever taken these types of drugs Incognito?

                    • greywarshark

                      What type of drugs?   Any that are replaced by generics?   I have and found them good for me.    Different people can have different effects to different drugs.   It may even be the filler that they mix the active ingredient with to make the pill, or other medication.

                    • Rosemary McDonald []

                      Eyes roll.  Actually causes pain. 

                      There's an awful lot of projection going on here. So determined to hold their line, one does wonder if there are vested interests.

                      Blinkered, perhaps?  Or it fear of losing whatever credibility is at risk when commenting using a pseudonym?

                      Whatever….serious case of closed minditis…or simply hard hearted lack of empathy.

                    • Incognito


              • Incognito

                Indeed, placebo/nocebo is a very hard one to get a good handle on.

                Did you see the comment yesterday by Poission? It does touch on similar difficulties that plague many studies involving the brain and brain function. A fascinating area to be working in!

                Open mike 23/06/2019

                • Andre

                  I presume you wanted to link to this comment? /open-mike-23-06-2019/#comment-1630874

                  Looks like the current comment editor strips off the hash and comment number and just goes to the OP when linking to a TS comment if the link is a standalone paragraph, but leaves it all intact when the link is part of a sentence or paragraph.

                  With respect to the current topic of changing generic medication, the raw numbers I've come across for this specific change are around 120 complaints in 45,000 users. I can't help wondering how those numbers would compare to the effect of just changing the packaging without changing the medication in any way.

                  That's not intended to belittle the suffering of those affected. Even if it is purely nocebo effect, the suffering is still very real.

                  • Incognito

                    Yes, that’s the one, thanks! Caught by out again by the WP Editor 🙁

                    The truth will be somewhere between “it’s all in their head” and “it’s all due to the drug and/or formulation”.

                    Yes, the suffering is real and I believe the best way to help alleviate the suffering is to study these things seriously, systematically, and scientifically.

                    • McFlock

                      Might just be easier to pay for the brand formula.

                      As one to two commenters illustrate, facts don’t always persuade a change in belief, even if it is all nocebo (maybe maybe not).

                    • Incognito []

                      The brand formula is usually much more expensive and since money makes the world go around, we’re stuck in a difficult situation when it comes to Health or any spending of Taxpayers’ money for that matter. Therefore, we’ve to come up with ‘smarter’ ways of spending and ‘best value for money’ constructs, etc. This can have some unintended consequences of its own but this doesn’t mean we throw the baby with the bath water.

                      The One Two entity is a slippery customer who is afraid to show his face and engage in a genuine conversation that’s supported by evidence. Never mind, I can think or more fun things to spend my time on.

                    • Macro

                      Speaking from personal experience Incog I experienced a very adverse affect when a medication I was on and which was giving very satisfactory results was replaced by Pharmac for a generic. The effect wasn't in my head – but it certainly was in my lower abdomen. I was running to the dunny almost constantly. I've never experienced anything like it! As soon as I was able – ie after the effect had worn off – I took the remaining offending tablets (89 of them) back to the pharmacy and saw my doctor to see if there was any of the previous supply – which of course there wasn't. Fortunately a similar type of medication was available, and that has been as good, if not better, at alleviating the symptoms as the first. I can now work in the garden again.

                    • Incognito []

                      Thanks for sharing that info, Macro, I think 😉

                      When talking about switching from a brand to a generic it is important that it is indeed only the label that is different and there are no other differences, e.g. in dosage, frequency, etc.
                      Some drug formulations can profoundly affect uptake and absorption and cause stomach or intestinal (bowel) irritation. The actual API will be the exact same thing but the way it is released may be (slightly) different. Once it is absorbed and in the circulation, assuming it is an oral drug, it will work in the exact same way as the branded version. The body (but maybe not the mind) cannot tell the difference between brand and generic. Heck, many analyses, assays, and instruments are used to show that the APIs are in fact identical. If these sophisticated instruments cannot tell the difference because there is no difference then how do we explain actual or perceived differences in pharmacodynamics, in treatment effects and/or outcomes? Further, there are huge differences in how people respond to these drug switches. Again, how do we explain these satisfactorily and, more importantly, how do we predict these responses? Treatments have to be efficacious and side effects (adverse events) have to be minimised or avoided altogether.

                      It frustrates me no end that some commenters here think they know more and better than the combined wisdom of many others because all (!) those others are allegedly in the pockets of corrupt regulators and evil corporations that “[a]bsolutely intentional…and in my opinion…intended to do harm”. Yet, these commenters run for the hills when challenged or go for the jugular.

                    • McFlock

                      yeah it is usually much more expensive, but still possibly cheaper than spending money on trying to persuade people that what might actually be a real problem with the replacement is all in their head.

                      Sometimes the cold math of practicality works the other way – it might be cheaper to give a few hundred people what they want rather than pay for the ambulances called by the public every time there is a seizure.

                    • Macro


                      Without going into too much personal detail this was an oral drug I would take on an as required basis. particularly when I was about to take some outdoor activity that involved bending over – like gardening or mowing a lawn. The dosage was exactly the same, and was prescribed exactly the same as previously. I was about to spend an hour mowing a lawn so took a tablet to help prevent the symptoms that normally followed such activity without it. Unfortunately on completion of the lawn mowing it wasn't heartburn and dyspepsia I experienced –  so I guess in some manner it was working. But the side effect was highly unpleasant. I note that with this drug one of the side effects can be exactly what I experienced, but the previous tablets never had that effect on me. And I had been using them for over 2 years

            • Rosemary McDonald

              Incognito.  Are you being deliberately insulting implying that I have no basis for what I say, that I have somehow been blinded by what you see One Two's tin foil hat?

              Some if us, out here in the real world have very close and personal experience of these issues.

              We have seen first hand the effect of a funded medicine being replaced by a generic and the subsequent adverse effect. 

              We are not all delicate and hyper sensitive snowflakes with a psychological dependency on a particular coloured pill.

              In some cases the difference between the generic and other are very real.



              • Kay

                @Rosemary, waste of time trying to reason with some people. Just keep on enlightening those who want to be

              • Incognito

                Where, how, and more importantly, why would I to be “deliberately insulting” (to you)? If indeed I were “implying” what you assume I was implying, why would you not first ask and check if your assumption is correct? So much bad faith 🙁

                One Two clearly has an enormous chip on his shoulder and has many blind spots in his knowledge because of his bias. You don’t have to agree with me, it is my opinion, and it is your choice. Is this an insult??

                There is no known physico-chemical basis for generics to act different from the original branded API.

                Generic drugs are copies of brand-name drugs that have exactly the same dosage, intended use, effects, side effects, route of administration, risks, safety, and strength as the original drug. In other words, their pharmacological effects are exactly the same as those of their brand-name counterparts.


                I’m sure there are exceptions but anecdotal evidence doesn’t cut it, for me; there are many confounding factors that are hidden and/or latent. That is not personal nor an insult but a fact.

                BTW, what did you make of the Petrie paper?

                • Kay

                  Oh I get it. You work for Pharmac 🙂

                  • greywarshark

                    That is so uncalled for Kay.   If you can't conduct a sensible argument then why are you here?   Isn't there a website where you go to talk with similar others when you are fed up with everybody?   We try to stay above that level.

                    • Kay

                      No not uncalled for. Spouting the Pharmac official line to the T.  Having been bombarded with it from all directions for several months now it's a logical conclusion to reach, but I apologise in Incog if I'm wrong. You're sounding very defensive yourself. I'm quite capable of conducting a sensible argument, I've been doing so all afternoon. Why do you think I'm fed up with everybody?

                    • One Two []

                      Kay, your comments and experiences carry far more credibility than those who seek to dismiss those with direct experiences as anecdotes and other disparaging language…

                      There seems to be almost an envious streak running through some punters here…where those with the direct experiences are talked down by those who have not got the same experiences…it's rather twisted up and is most often the same type of subject matter…certainly it involves the same punters…

                      Might be best to keep your energy for those who are open to receive your shared experiences and information…

                      You are right to be concerned with the tactic (more likely a strategy) of Pharmac, as are all those being affected at present, and those who will be in future…

                    • Incognito []

                      The only “talking down” is coming from you.

                      Please explain confounding factors and hidden variables in pharmacodynamics to the punters here.

                      Contrary to what you seem to assume, I certainly don’t think anecdotal data are useless but they do tend to add ‘noise’ to the overall data and picture.

                      Medical science and science in general aims to identify this noise (and bias), reduce it, if possible, eliminate it (usually impossible), control it, etc. This is to ‘talk up’ the true signal above the noise and identify the real effect. Otherwise, they’d be measuring mostly noise or a tiny signal in a vast sea of experimental and statistical noise.

                      This is how science tries to discern the truth and help alleviate suffering. Science is noise reduction. Seeding doubt without making a real argument that is supported by evidence is misleading at best.

                      In your comments so far, you have not provided one shred of evidence so why don’t you start with the weight of anecdata vs. controlled studies?

                    • One Two []

                      I've ignored your responses enough times in recent days that you should have grasped the hint I was giving you…

                      But that hasn't worked.

                      You're welcome to keep responding directly and contradicting yourself in referencing my pseudonym when replying to others…using insults , projected assumptions and your own readily identifiable bias…blind spots which lead you toward blatant hypocrisy…

                      It's great you seem to be on a journey of sorts…starting out is the hardest step…the next steps can be confusing and confounding as the light bulbs flash rapidly…no need to become overwhelmed…

                      I'll not be responding to you again..that I've had to spell it out for you … just take it onboard…

                    • Incognito []

                      Thank you Masters Po and Yoda, I have figured your user name. May the Force be with you.

                    • Incognito []

                      Have a break – have a KitKat 😉

                      I have no problems with someone being critical or sceptical but they should judge an argument on facts and evidence rather than fire at will with no other aim than a commenter who puts up facts and evidence, as well as opinion, that don’t go down well, for one reason or other.

                      Neither my medical history nor my professional situation should come into this. I don’t need them to make my case nor should anybody here need them to judge my case or argue against it. Anyway, I am not who or what you think I am and this is an exercise in futility.

                    • McFlock

                      Well, to be fair Kay has acknowledged looking down the pointy end of this issue with the seizure medication specifically, which does have enough of an effect from brand transfer (for whatever reason) for a mandatory brand change to be controversial (at best).


                  • Rosemary McDonald

                    Eyes roll.  Actually causes pain. 

                    There's an awful lot of projection going on here. So determined to hold their line, one does wonder if there are vested interests.

                    Blinkered, perhaps?  Or it fear of losing whatever credibility is at risk when commenting using a pseudonym?

                    Whatever….serious case of closed minditis…or simply hard hearted lack of empathy.

                    • greywarshark

                      Frankly Rosemary I now think much of that at 4.52pm applies to you yourself.   After reading much of your thinking and emoting.

                    • McFlock

                      lol sore eyes from an eye roll – you might want to go to the doc about that 🙂

                    • Incognito

                      So determined to hold their line, one does wonder if there are vested interests.

                      As NZ Taxpayer, I have ‘shares’ in PHARMAC and ‘vested interests’ in NZ society as a whole.

                      Since you know nothing about my loved ones nor me, I’d kindly ask you to refrain from attacking my personal integrity or accusing me of lack of empathy without anything to back it up.

                      You were implying before that I was “deliberately insulting” and perhaps you can see the irony here.

                  • Incognito

                    Close but no chocolate fish 😉

              • WeTheBleeple

                Chirality as well as adjuvants can make a significant difference to effective dose and/or unexpected effects. Think of the left and right hand – mirror images that are not the same, nor do they function the same way though they share functionality.

                "The choice between single stereoisomers (homochiral drugs) and composite chiral drugs (mixtures of stereoisomers) depends upon therapeutic advantages (such as a reduction in xenobiotic load), possible adverse side-effects and development costs."

                Thalidomide was the wake up call that specific enantiomers of drugs vary from their chiral counterparts.

                It can be a lot more expensive trying to sort out a specific enantiomer, and so, lacking evidence of adverse reactions, a racemic mix is often produced as a cheap alternative.

                This stuff really should be pinned down by drug companies themselves, but if they're in competition not cooperation there's always scope for problems. Any new generic medicine should have it's enantiomers qualified and quantified then compared to the original before release.

                Microbes in the gut vary considerably from person to person too. This is a total mindfuck for researchers as different microbes break down or build different stuff. This too can reduce or enhance drug efficacy.

                And the whys and hows to determine dosage and/or drug, in consideration of the wide variance in gut microbe communities: non-existant.

                Maybe in distant future with meta-meta data.

                I don't have answers, but it's bloody complex.


        • greywarshark

          A new sort of woofer incognito.

    • sumsuch 1.4

      Love Pharmac. Enough to prefer it to the other like ACC. Where our regulation comes in.

  2. johnm 2

    Julian Cribb: "There Will Come a Point When There Are More Migrants Than There Are Bullets"

    • WeTheBleeple 2.1

      That is such a good talk with many valid talking points. How about sharing some of them so people might invest time in it themselves. 

      • OnceWasTim 2.1.1

        Ae! It is @WtB.  Competitive Sussoighties et al.

        There are certain things lil 'ole NuZull really needs to start thinking about – not the least of which is their utter hypocrisy when it comes to immigration policy. Fundamentally Ray Shist

        E.G. that expectation where we (effectively as what we've labelled 'economic migrants') have an expectation to migrate to wherever we please – especially Mother Britain, or Canada, or OZ or the US of A and work for a higher valued dollar that let's us pay off (say a student loan faster), or even throw a few dollars at one or two in abject poverty in the former Brit Colonies as we go on our various OEs, But WOE betide any lesser beings (always black or brown or yellow) that have similar aspirations.

        We often do so on technicalities as well, such as the legal constructs that grant us things like 'citizenship', 'dual citizenship', even 'multiple citizenships' (such as in the case of those with an abundance of the American dollar, or black Chinese Reninbi, or some Rupees or African currencies backed by indebtedness and the loss of land and livelihoods). All risk-assessed and demographically-profiled in large part – even if publicly all that is now a no-no.

        It's become completely and utterly pervasive. The appointment of imported CEO's as generic managers to government agencies (usually from the white wing of the former Britis Empire) on the basis of their managerial, business oriented C.V's whilst completely unaccustomed (yet) to Ao/NZ culture and sussoighty.  

        It's little wonder we're fucking things up (royally).

        There is a complete inability for many to understand migration (the reasons for it for starters) and why, if we think we should judge others in a different way than the expectations we have for ourselves, then we're all in for a bloody big battle.

        I'm not sure if you noticed how STUFF, over the weekend decided to have a bit of a blitz on immigration matters – some of it good, other bits of it obviously journalistic cadets' assignments (a B+ or A- mostly).  There were 4, or 5, or 6 items on Sunday. Not to mention a former Treasury employee on The Spinoff and the 7 or 8 pages of links I keep (mainly RNZ) keeping track of things, or a couple of TVNZ and NewShub journalists wanting to delve deeper.

        Btw …… have you ever noticed the credentials of those running our Public Service? (I mean those in actual positions of power), AND how they interact with a political class that's doing its best to be kind and transformational?


        • WeTheBleeple

          "Btw …… have you ever noticed the credentials of those running our Public Service? (I mean those in actual positions of power), AND how they interact with a political class that's doing its best to be kind and transformational?"

          Sneering contempt is how they come across. Like some complete bastards Tories I have met.

          • OnceWasTim

            Snearing? maybe yep. But certainly with self preservation at the top of their agendas – even if it takes a bit of bullshit and spin, and ALWAYS in ways they think they can't be caught out. (Except often they can)

            I'll give you just one example. You may remember a James Casson who used terms like 'scum' on social media and who's aspirations were towards local body politics.  IF his colleagues who he worked with on a day-to-day basis are trying to tell me they had no idea what a racist/supremacist arsehole he is/was, I've got the deal of the century for them.

            Christ!, I don't even work for the place, but I and others were well aware of it – some of us even trying to alert 'officials' to it. 

            It's good that a good many of these Masters of the Universe are starting to realise there's a new junta in town with a new set of policies which you will carry out in apolitical fashion.

            "I can't comment on operational matters" doesn't actually cut it. NO Munster, you can't, but you CAN comment on , and express your dissatisfaction to the Masters of the Universe's bossMAN,  when policies are not being carried out, and in a way that is expected. (And it shouldn't have taken this long)

            (There's just ONE example – you can probably understand the frustrations with others in/over other agencies such as OT, or NZTA, or MSD, or Health, or Edjkayshun).

            It's a threat to a 3rd term AND to what the boffins term the 'political capital' of JA.

            The arseholes will and ARE testing the coalition's vulnerabilities, and I hope like fuck they realise some of those arseholes are people that profess to be their best friends.

            • WeTheBleeple

              I reckon the PM, and especially with Winston close, can spot the mongrels. They're not born yesterday.

              Ironically, she could do with a Key at hand to make the mongrels disappear. 


    • johnm 2.2


      allrawpaul 4 hours ago

      I agree that a massive migrant crisis is coming and it will reach a point where migrants are shot on sight, blown to smithereens by missiles and run over by tanks by the millions.   I  am not hearing any realistic solutions from Mr. Cribb.   For example,  how does he suggest that we remove 1.3 trillion tons of co2 and 3.5 billion tons of methane from the atmosphere within the next 3 years?   If we don't do that, we will have a blue ocean event, the methane bomb will explode, we will quickly blow past 3c, agriculture will collapse, civilization will fall, we will blow past 4, 5 and 6c,  global nuclear holocaust will ensue and all of the worlds forest will burn down jumping global heating another several degrees.   There are no solutions.  The puppetmasters know it and so they are going all in on global dimming via massive economic growth and unregulated air pollution, just to keep the game going for a few more years.   Humans can wreck just about anything.  Humans cannot fix most of what they wreck. (Try fixing the millions of species we have already driven into extinction) Atmospheric chemistry is something we have wrecked, which we cannot come close to fixing, and this time the consequences of our destructiveness and our omnicidal activity will include near term human extinction.   I would be shocked to still be here in 10 years.

      Julie Ann Myers 3 hours ago

      Cribb demonstrates the human capacity for self-delusion magnificently. His bizarre prescription to all our problems is for men to abdicate their responsibility & turn the entire dilemma over to women! As if testosterone is the root of all evil. As if women are inherently better equipped for "solving" Catch-22 dilemmas that pose impossible moral choices. Women have been forced to be cooperative with one another by necessity, not by some magical power of estrogen. Oppressed peoples in general develop qualities, behaviors & subcultures of mutual support. But once these people attain positions of power, do they actually behave more cooperatively & humanely? Certainly there are women in the US who have proven that this is not so… Kirstjen Nielsen locking children in cages, Nikki Haley promoting war, Hillary Clinton cackling like a psychopath about killing people. For any humans to survive at all, all hands on deck are required. There is no reason to think that any specific gender is more or less likely to positively contribute in that quest. At such a critical turning point, how can Cribb think it makes sense to become distracted in a sociopolitical debate about the sainthood of women? There is not time to devolve into the delusional thinking of Madonna complexes.

      Ace 1 5 hours ago


      He mentioned humans capacity for self delusion being one of the fundamental problems. That sums up 99% of nutty ape problems.


      • WeTheBleeple 2.2.1

        We have a planet to save and these chumps keep playing power games. Hope China and Russia put military in Iran, watch the US/Israel/Saudis back right off.

        Just look at that threesome. 

        Play times over. Fuck leaders who aren't worth the time of day. Time to muck in regardless how daunting it looks.

        'Serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can.'

        Delusional? Maybe. Met a lot of people, misguided at times, but on the whole I've greatly enjoyed the humans I've met. There are many articles pointing out how deluded we are, how stupid we are, etc. But I've met thousands of humans, and only a handful were (imo) irredeemable.

        For every useless politician and billionaire, there's many thousands of us willing to muck in. Maybe we don't need these useless people and waiting on them is folly. If we have to march to force their hand. Then March!

        If we must boycott corporates to force their hand – boycott!

        Doing nothing is folly.

        Decarbonise your life and business now. Starve the oil companies and corporations. grow food forests in every yard. Learn to store water in the ground for our aquifers. Simple rain gardens, swales, ponds. Water is the key to life. Let's start respecting both water and life. Making the place beautiful is a good place to start saving the planet. 

        Work out how to ditch your oil habits and ditch them.

        Our leaders wont save the world, it's always been up to us. 

        • greywarshark

          My most unfavourite phrase from a pollie –

          '"I can't comment on operational matters"'.

      • sumsuch 2.2.2

        Clive James (climate change) and Germaine Greer (rape) equally fuck up in their last years. 10 years, by how the figures run ahead of forecasts, sounds reasonable. Strangely,  rational expresses in 'God help us'. 

    • johnm 2.3

      Julian Cribb Interview

    • Gabby 2.4

      Who the funk is Julian Cribb and who has ever given much of a funk what he said?

  3. WeTheBleeple 3

    Phil Quin tackles entitlement.

    He very succinctly words an injustice that makes many of us feel rather powerless in the face of it.

    "Hisco and his ilk, who reach a threshold whereby they can only fail upwards"

    Yet below this threshold is a glass ceiling, and then another, and another. The promise of capitalism that anyone can break through their ceiling into the land of luxury yachts lends odds worse than a lottery, yet somehow we are to believe that hard work can get us there.

    The people doing hard work are all taxed and burdened with the every day expenses of feeding corporate entities enormous profits. The supermarkets, power companies, oil companies, banks… all stripping the worker of all they earn and leading them into a life of debt servitude.

    While our government holds onto a surplus tightly – for the road ahead is fraught with peril, ANZ stuffs further millions into the pockets of a multi-million [greed] as he walks out the door.

    While Cameron thinks the world should be vegan because he is, and hijacks the world's press to slag off our world leading industry (who have been doing amazing things btw), he simultaneously has his hand in our workers pockets.

    When will enough be enough. For the billionaire class – never enough. For the rest of us down here in the actual working world, accountability couldn't come sooner.

    The government has a part to play in this and the side they've taken is not flattering. Not repealing the Hobbit law and passing off Hisco as ANZ's problem reveals very clearly that the filthy rich influence reaches all the way to the top. It's better not to ruffle their feathers – they have tantrums and run off with their loot.

    The whole world has been in thrall to freeloaders such as these. It's high time the rosy glasses come off and stay off.


    • mauī 3.1

      You may be unaware, but Quin ranks high on a odiousity level and is part of the blairite rump. 


      • WeTheBleeple 3.1.1

        I'm taking that one article into account, am not really interested in muck-raking the author. Media is in a scrambling shambles to even be relevant. This article was not bad.

        Your comment does give perspective of the human condition, where even the 'odious' are capable of fair critique.

    • greywarshark 3.2

      Money and capital accretion desire should be regarded as an OCD – Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder or like that one where your body can't ever feel well-fed, doesn't feel satiety;  the money compulsion is like the Prader-Willi Syndrome which results in changed body pattern, stunted growth,  low muscle mass.   The hunger-for-money compulsion and adherence to the type stunts the Humanity mass in a person.   We are seeing this starkly too frequently.

  4. Observer Tokoroa 4

    Rosemary hands out the Rhaspberry

    Beware the Donalds

    The National Party, of which Rosemary McDonald is but a heartfelt little tag along, had ample opportunity to uplift and raise to the Maximum our well thought through NZ Pharmac approach to Quality Medications.

    But on finding herself grubbing around with Democratic people such as Labour, Greens, NZ First (Equity), she is promising the very Ill members of the National Party medications that are not anywhere near fully Tested, Extremely Expensive and of very doubtful Efficacy. Yippee

    It would seem that just as Donald Trump has said he is going to cure Cancer within two Years, Rosemary McDonald is going to rid the whole Planet of every physical and mental hiccup tomorrow.

    Leading very sick people along false paths, is a vile thing to do Rosemary. And you know it.

    Go drink your snake oil Rosemary.




    • Rosemary McDonald 4.1


      Strange, nay, positively bizarre that a person would choose to crudely try and politicize access to life enabling medications.

      And FYI, some of us have always been left but have not found any political party in the last thirty years that has been what could be even generously described as socially progressive.  Some of us voted in 2017 cautiously hopeful there was a hint of real transformative intent from Labour and the Greens.

      Sadly, there are many disappointed voters out here in the real world.  Many of these struggle daily with profound health and disability issues.

      They are not yet feeling the loving kindness and wellbeing is simply  a concept.



      • A 4.1.1

        Maybe I missed a few posts but I'm not understanding this either.

        • Rosemary McDonald

          Keen as they were to have a go at me, OT overlooked the necessity to engage the reply button at the bottom of my comment at 1.  Happens to the best of us but not conducive to continuity. smiley

    • greywarshark 4.2

      Hey Observer Tokoroa

      Rosemary has had a lot of difficulties re illness.   You may not agree with everything she says but it would be better to limit your negative opinion to a few lines.   Sometimes less makes more impact.    Your last three lines would have been enough to register your disagreement and your judgment.    The rest is just too much.

  5. Muttonbird 5

    There is a casual arrogance to ANZ NZ chairman John Key's handling of the David Hisco affair…

    …ANZ shareholders and the New Zealand public can't look at the accounting for Arawata, and they don't know how it's accounted for.

    Key certainly didn't intend that they should when told a rather quaint fable last week about a banker with a $50,000 blind spot.

    One of the bankers is gone, but at the helm remains a man who is blind to hubris.

    Is it any wonder that there is a casual arrogance to John Key at the ANZ, because casual arrogance described his entire political career. He is drawn to casual arrogance and it follow him wherever he goes.


    • Blazer 5.1

      Hisco's greed  has one small redeeming feature,he started off as a bank teller.


      John Roughan's NZH story today 'David Hisco's big contribution to NZ'…is laughable!

      • Wensleydale 5.1.1

        Anyone who expects a cogent argument from John Roughan probably needs to get out more. Whenever I read anything of his (and I do my best to avoid subjecting myself to his drivel), I hear grotesque sucking sounds in the background. I'm not entirely sure what it might be…

      • sumsuch 5.1.2

        Surely Roughan is a mental case. Necessary to work on the op page of the Herald. Never thinking of the people , just the free flowing veins of finance. Auck-land.

    • mac1 5.2

      In an episode of 'Rome", Julius Caesar was counselled by Marc Antony to watch out for hubris in his taking of a Triumph and assumption of the powers of an imperator. His reply was to say that hubris only occurs when you lose.

      John Key avoided his 2017 Election hubris moment by standing down from the Prime Ministership.

      A cartoon appeared in today's paper by Jeff Bell about John Key being the next millionaire to seek funds in a millionaire gofundme campaign over the loss of the flag referendum.

      It looks blatantly obvious with the timing of his referendum comments that Key is again offering a distraction from his poor decision-making and supervision as ASB chairman. A small matter of a $10 million house being sold to the 'sacked' CEO for less than paid for it after extensive 'maintenance' such as a reroof and new bathrooms also slides under the radar with this distraction ploy.

      • Blazer 5.2.1



        It appears the difference between the market value of the St Heliers hacienda and its G.V, is an amount about equal to the cost of a nice holiday 'bach' where the hardworking and very successful, can relax and recharge their extraordinary powers.

        • mac1

          Thanks, Blazer, ANZ of course.

          So, Key's CEO buys a house from their bank for far less than GV and then Key just happens to sell him his own bach for the difference? What serendipity!

          I had not connected until now those two events. Much distraction needed indeed. This back-scratching could lead to a visible rash.


          • Muttonbird

            Yep. St Heliers house bought July 2017. Omaha house bought February 2018.

            • Blazer

              Nice deal  would be revaluation of St Helers to market and bundle the bach into the mortgage.No cash injection..required.

              • alwyn

                What the hell does the sale of the St Helliers house have to do with John Key?

                After all Hisco's wife bought the place in July 2017, as you really must know.

                "Deborah Walsh paid $6.9 million in July of that year for the lavish St Heliers property, less than the $7.55m ANZ paid when it bought the house in early 2011."


                John Key did not become a Board member at ANZ until October 2017 and didn't become Chairman until 2018.


                You really should take some treatment for the derangement of your KDS.

                Or at least just stick to the facts.

                • Blazer

                  Hisco bought the Omaha property off KEY in Feb 2018.

                  • Dukeofurl

                    Hes not known as Alwrong for nothing

                    6 months or so by my reckoning

                  • alwyn

                    I will repeat my question, and I will put the location in bold type for your benefit.

                    "What the hell does the sale of the St Heliers house have to do with John Key?". He wasn't involved with the ANZ bank at the time.

                    And the Dukeofcrap might like to consider the question also. Or does he suffer from an incurable dose of KDS also?

                    • Blazer

                      ALWYN …please point me to my post that says the sale of the St Heliers  house involves John Key.

                    • alwyn

                      My question should more properly I suppose have been posed to mac1 who said.

                      "It looks blatantly obvious with the timing of his referendum comments that Key is again offering a distraction from his poor decision-making and supervision as ASB chairman. A small matter of a $10 million house being sold to the 'sacked' CEO for less than paid for it after extensive 'maintenance' such as a reroof and new bathrooms also slides under the radar with this distraction ploy".


                      "So, Key's CEO buys a house from their bank for far less than GV and then Key just happens to sell him his own bach for the difference? What serendipity!".

                      You only implicitly connected them when you say

                      "It appears the difference between the market value of the St Heliers hacienda and its G.V, is an amount about equal to the cost of a nice holiday 'bach' where the hardworking and very successful, can relax and recharge their extraordinary powers."


                      "Nice deal  would be revaluation of St Helers to market and bundle the bach into the mortgage.No cash injection..required."

                      However what Hisco may have done in buying the property at St Heliers still has nothing to do with Key

                    • Blazer

                      Very good Alwyn…your 'retraction' was certainly not as BOLD as your..allegation!

    • reason 5.3

      John Key was / is a good fit for ANZ …. non-compliant equals no worries for john key and he found it a cheap way to run a government  ….. pretty legal, wink wink


      ANZ senior staff were involved at the thick end of the 1MDB scam …..  they helped the fraud money flow … and never a whistle did they blow.


      When appointing directors, ANZs choice of John Key  …was probably as someone who would keep hush hush about dirty deals …. He has the code of the offshore looters….

      …..What John Key would  call 'discreet creativity' ….. a normal person would call secretive fraud 



      Sarawak Report has already pointed out along with others that all the top ranking officials stationed to managed AmBank in KL were on secondment from ANZ’s Sydney headquarters, a matter advertised as a badge of strong managment by the then Head of ANZ, Mike Smith,

      However, despite persistent and compelling information that all such senior officials in KL along with ANZ’s own top brass had to have known about the massive transactions and also the huge sums that later poured into Najib’s own personal account at AmBank, there has been no announcement of an official enquiry by ASIC or investigations into malpractice.









      • sumsuch 5.3.1

        I used to do the garden for ANZ after they took over from National Bank. My salty last message to my uber-contractor mentioned my longtime dislike of them. Seem to have been proven right .On the basis of them lending money to buy shares prior to our 87 sharemarket crash they refused my application to join up. It was me not Bruce Judge responsible for their probs.

  6. johnm 6


    As We Face Armageddon the Western World Is Leaderless

    Paul Craig Roberts

    According to news reports, the validity of which cannot be ascertained by the general public, a crazed US government came within 10 minutes of igniting a general conflagration in the Middle East, the consequences of which could have been catastrophic for all. 

    The moronic warmongers in high office—Bolton, Pompeo, and Pence—and their Israel Lobby masters are determined, and they have not abandoned their campaign for war with Iran.  Of course, the liars say that Iran will just accept its punishment for defending its territory and there will be no war.  But this is not what Iran says.  I believe Iran.


    • aj 6.1

      Roberts has a bleak but probably correct forecast. Trump is not in control, talk about a rock and a hard place crying

    • Dennis Frank 6.2

      Funny, that.  Would anyone seriously expect the political left to front with leaders nowadays?  Most unlikely.  Usually a waste of time reading PCR due to his ongoing inability to see the big picture.

      However, if he did actually explain the psychological reasons that the left has collectively failed to produce credible leaders on the global stage, we could applaud his insight, eh?  I bet you can't prove his adequacy as a political commentator thus!

      Ardern's a natural leader.  Left?  Arguable.  More like a centrist wolf in leftist sheep's clothing, if you analyse her track record.  Not really leading on the global stage as yet, but has demonstrated genuine potential for doing so.

      • RedLogix 6.2.1

        if he did actually explain the psychological reasons that the left has collectively failed to produce credible leaders on the global stage

        Given the way most people react when I speak to this theme, why am I not surprised?  When the left abdicated it's internationalist roots sometime around the 70's, it left a vacuum which has been filled by actors with no loyalty to ordinary people and their concerns.

        As for the Western world being leaderless; well the left has turned away from it's ideals, denigrating it and undermining it from within for at least three decades.

        And then we wonder why it all looks so bleak.

        • WeTheBleeple

          See, that whole 'the left' thing, where you lump us all in with dubious and corrupt leadership – simply not fair on the common man just trying to get a vote in that counts for anything.

          So the problem is systemic and began in the 70's. How is the actions of long gone neo-libs my fault? How is the failure of left-leaning parties to self-correct… the fault of the people?

          As – if I was a part of it, I'd like to amend said behaviour.

          The broad generalisations you and DF are making fail to produce credible critique, as they are merely critical.

          DF, centrist cheerleader states "More like a centrist wolf in leftist sheep's clothing" of the PM. What's the problem if that's his mob?

          He claims 'the left has collectively failed to produce credible leaders'. Well, the right has collectively agreed to oust any half credible leaders where-ever they can. And they lend no credible alternative either. Our PM, BTW, through displaying humanity in crisis, has more credibility than many could ever hope to have. 

          So the left is to blame for not properly building an opposition for Trump, Bolsonaro, Morrison, Netanyahu, May (Johnson?) et al….

          The left are not voting these people in. But somehow it's our fault because within the left are those coerced corrupted and diluted by – guess who: the rich right.

          And RL – you claim the world looks so bleak due to the failure of the left. Really? Not the billionaire class denying science, making false science, hijacking the media, siphoning trillions from economies, warmongering, using psychology to raise consumption to untenable levels…

          I really can't see that the left did much but try to put bread on their tables.

          Their leaders, well, that's not 'the left', that's politicians, left, lying, or otherwise.

          • WeTheBleeple

            Oh yes, RL – I apologised to you for being OTT re: immigration and trump. But you might not have seen it.

            Sorry, I can definitely do better.

            • RedLogix

              Appreciated. No I hadn't seen it.

              See, that whole 'the left' thing, where you lump us all in

              As I was typing that I thought 'maybe I should qualify this somehow' … but then again I'm trying to make my comments more concise and direct. So I didn't.

              Not the billionaire class denying science, making false science, hijacking the media, siphoning trillions from economies, warmongering, using psychology to raise consumption to untenable levels…

              True enough, but last I looked none of us here were billionaires. I can't do anything about them. On the other hand I do  hold myself responsible to contend with them more competently.

              • WeTheBleeple

                I suspect it is the rich behind politics making such a hash of everything. A giant siphoning arrangement on behalf of themselves. joe90 linked and thus illuminated the web of deceipt/money trail, and how Trump and the fossil fuel industry are all over Brexit.

                It came as no surprise. Illuminating massive theft of public funds via layers of shell companies – post panama papers – also didn't surprise me. And even when it's legal, there's plenty of these corporate/government agreements that are entirely questionable.

                I have no idea how to deal with corruption on such a scale. All I can do individually is divest cash and votes from crooked players as much as possible, while investing in ethical concerns.

                Self sufficiency is part-remnant of hardship past, part distrust anyone else actually has my well being at heart. Now we're reaching a point of no-return, it's simply and plainly mandatory.

                I advise anyone and everyone to shore up their own resilience, preferably as groupings of locals. We might never again have the luxury of sitting at our desks waffling on the world's woes. The time to turn things around vs political cycles… the ball is in our court. The time is now.


        • Dennis Frank

          Hoping to find a realistic basis for an optimistic response, I googled "leftist political leaders".  You know how a window opens so you can select it if someone has already done that?  Didn't happen, so I must be the first cab off the rank.

          Then google produced a page of links without any such individual featuring.  Okay, I give up.  Clearly nobody on the face of the earth currently considers the category feasible.  The psychology reasons for this vacuum are most intriguing!

          Take Corbyn & Sanders, the front-runners.  I've written several comments here the past three years anticipating a collaboration that produces a new form of socialism for the new millennium.  They keep failing to produce that.  Sending a signal, zen-like, so loud we cannot escape how profound it is…

          • WeTheBleeple

            Thanks Dennis. I do understand (some of) that which you are saying now. It is not fair to lump us all with failed leaders however, as we'd love some good leadership too.

            Lumping us in like that kills the conversation before it kicks off. This might be why you struggle to engage people at times, or it might be your love of uncommon vocabulary. I do think you have much to offer and, like me, dilute it with personal quirks/bias coming out in otherwise thought/conversation provoking narrative.

            RL thinks global governance is required. Idealistically this sounds ok to me, but not at the hands of the billionaires destroying the world while thinking they're entitled to it. There is no viable alternative to lead the globe, let alone local politics.

            Why is the U.N. so toothless? More of the global collective of billionaires club in a new suit?

            P.S. Google’s algorithms seem to be bent toward commerce these days. Search for a word’s meaning or information and instead get a bunch of adverts and stories on business.

            • Dennis Frank

              Global governance seems inevitable, in principle.  Trump & Brexit showed what happens when current global elites take their string-pulling too far.

              Failure of trickle-down to become experientially real to a critical mass is relevant, but countering that is the very real lifting of millions out of poverty (mainly China & India).  The elites have master-minded neoliberalism, the left and right have operated in tandem to support it, but I have partial solidarity with leftists who prefer something better.

              So the collaborative effort to provide that positive alternative is what we need.  How to get there would embed as a topic more effectively if it were to focus on that.

              As for the UN, what's wrong is the original design.  Security Council & veto.  Realpolitik was the conceptual basis, but we need a redesign now that empowers collaboration.  Tibet remains the key.  Indonesia proved that a regional power can relinquish control of a conquered country in deference to the principle of autonomy, so China ought to follow that example.  Consensus in the UN produced the agreement that their invasion was wrong when I was a child, but the UN failed to do the enforcing.  That failure was due to the Security Council refusing to act in accord with the UN!

            • RedLogix

              but not at the hands of the billionaires destroying the world while thinking they're entitled to it.

              Tell me about it 🙂 That's precisely the point I was alluding to, in the absence of left wing leadership at the global level, then guess who will fill the void?

              Why is the U.N. so toothless? 

              That is a very good question. The obvious reason is that the UN Security Council Permanent member veto. It should have been time limited at the formation of the UN, but has become a terrible liability.

              The second thought which comes to mind is the lack of clear lines of democratic accountability. The ordinary person has no direct sense of connection to the UN.

              The third reason is more subtle. At the outset the UN Declaration of Human Rights was an astonishing achievement that has more impact on the post WW2 era than most people give it credit for. Yet in another sense it lacked a deeper spiritual foundation. I honestly don't quite know how to express it. 

              Perhaps it was conceived not so much as a true global federation, but primarily as a forum for the big nations to negotiate, without surrendering their sovereign 'right' to wage war. Until this happens the hopes for an effective, global collective security will forever be stalled.

              • WeTheBleeple

                When I read UNDRIP it gave me the illusion our leadership was on the right track and the world would become a better place. 

                The concept of the U.N. is good, the ideas they generate can be as you say remarkable. If we deal with this so called 'security council' somehow, lending weight to small and large players…

                Is there hope that this organisation is redeemable?

                Bring on the Federation of Planets. Put Spock in charge.

                On a side note have you seen the movie Idiocracy.  I watched it again on Saturday had me in gales of laughter. Very prophetic of Trumps America though near the very end the prophetic strength of it fell short

                "And then the UN (U.N.) UN-Nazied the world."

                I highly recommend it, especially in these tense times, I laughed till I cried.

                Here's the opening scene

        • aj

          When the left abdicated it's internationalist roots sometime around the 70's, it left a vacuum which has been filled by actors with no loyalty to ordinary people and their concerns.

          I agree. United we stand, divided we fall. The left has become fractured since the 70's whereas the right has been quite singled minded and ruthless in exploiting any political advantage it can. Even Warren Buffet can see that.


    • johnm 6.3

      Trump’s aborted strikes on Iran: Ten minutes to World War III


  7. Rapunzel 7

    I believe if the accounting was fully done for this from 2011 looking at GST claims, payments and those on the repairs plus a likely "loss" that all this also cost the NZ tax payer via transactions with IRD.

  8. reason 8

    Dirty politics lives on in our media ……The NZ media seems to have a almost unofficial censorship black out on the right wing coup which took place In Brazil with the help of a kangaroo court show trial


    Despite repeatedly insisting in public that they were acting ethically and impartially, the chats revealed that the judge was passing on advice, investigative leads, and inside information to the prosecutors — who were themselves plotting to prevent Lula’s Workers’ Party from winning last year’s election.

    Lula, who had been the far and away favourite in election polls, was rendered ineligible by his conviction, and instead the far-right candidate Jair Bolsonaro handily won over Lula’s replacement. Lula has maintained that he was not granted a fair trial. Moro is now Bolsonaro’s justice minister.




    Our media often seems to get its international reporting cues from overseas media …. who are also largely missing in action about the Bolsonaro right wing creeps cheats and thugs… .and their usa soul mates.


    In context of the situation in Venezuela, and the Trump administrations desire for Brazil to play a active, even military role, this was a timely and explosive story, and worthy of serious investigation. ……. the Guardian, NYT, and BBC failed to mention Bolsonaro and Moro’s CIA visit even once, across various published articles on the tour. The Guardian published three articles, all of which omitted the CIA visit……. 


    The Brazilian President was accompanied to the CIA HQ by Sérgio Moro, the US-trained Inquisitor-Judge turned Justice Minister who was responsible for the politically motivated jailing of Bolsonaro’s main competitor in the 2018 election, Lula da Silva, who was certain to win until his forced removal from the race. With this, Moro delivered the election to Bolsonaro, and was immediately rewarded with a ministerial position…………… The pair met Gina Haspel, the head of the agency who had been removed in 2013 after revelations of her direct role in torture of kidnapped suspects in the wake of 911. Given that Bolsonaro is an enthusiastic supporter of torture and publicly eulogises torturers of Brazil’s dictatorship era, this cannot have caused him any concern.

    • AB 8.1

      Not so much 'dirty politics' as 'no politics'.  Anyway, more important than the largest country in South America, I think Hilary and Jeremy are working brilliantly together on 7 sharp – I feel they have the edge on Jessie and the crew over at The Project. I am truly consumed with interest in this rivalry. And what about the Crusaders?

  9. Dennis Frank 9

    Boris under pressure:  "The foreign secretary joined cabinet ministers, backbenchers and a major party donor in demanding that the frontrunner to succeed Theresa May speak out about the loud, late-night altercation with his partner, Carrie Symonds, which was heard by – several neighbours."  https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2019/jun/23/boris-johnson-faces-growing-pressure-to-comment-on-row-with-partner

    "Concern is growing in the Johnson’s campaign that his opponent has seized the initiative in just two days since police were called by a neighbour after hearing “shouting” and “smashing” coming from the south London flat that Johnson shares with Symonds."

    On RNZ, I heard a report of screaming.  Didn't say which of the two was doing that, though.  Perhaps Boris will issue the standard political explanation:  "We had a full and frank exchange of views."

    Or he may be more forthright:  "I told her I will become the local rep of the ruling patriarchy, so she'd better get used to it.  Something about the prospect clearly bothered her.  I may have added something about doing what she was told."

  10. greywarshark 10

    Tip for the day for those not in the know.
    How do I "press pound" on a cell phone?…

    Eventually though, the penny dropped.
    Our transatlantic cousins refer to the hash key as a pound. #


  11. greywarshark 11

    This story refers to a huntsman in Tasmania.   But it is not a man shooting wild game.   It is a pretty large spider.    Mmmm.


    • A 11.1

      So cold I can't concentrate on the pages before me.  Going outside to warm up (and this is after insulation in ceiling + underfloor…it used to be even worse)

      • WeTheBleeple 11.1.1

        Is the house still damp? A dehumidifier makes quite a difference raising base temperature but also making it easier to heat. They cost a few bob however.

        I did one winter in a garage. At least I was 'housed' that winter. Fingerless gloves scarf and wooly hat to work at the computer, a long walk to warm the bones… Rainy day calisthenics. I feel for the aged who can't just move and burn some steam to heat up.

        • bwaghorn

          Or open the windows every morning no matter what . Dry the house out . 

          • greywarshark

            If you can keep the ends of your body warm it helps too!   Nice double pair of socks with thick ones on top, a pull on cap, beanie on head, and those fingerless gloves, or just old gloves that you cut the tips off.    Wrap a rug around your legs, and get up and have a hot drink every two hours, the warmth going down feels good and it brightens you up to give yourself a bit of self-care.

          • ianmac

            Exactly bwaghorn. Open the windows wide especially bedrooms as sleepers breathe out a huge amount of moisture. Get rid of damp air and you prevent mould and heating is cheaper and more effective. Every time they show a room on TV with black mould I shout at the TV, "Open the windows!"

            • greywarshark

              A relation of mine used to have some rented flats built before the crappy building style giving leaky homes and nasty fungus.   He had to replace all the gib from one because it had never had open windows. 

              It would be a worthwhile compulsory subject to teach third formers who by about 13 years, would be at a suitable age to learn about house-maintenance and not to take our expensive housing for granted.  That and of course, basic cooking, a bit on healthy diet and growing some simple food, lettuce in a bucket, and a bit of sewing like buttons, threading elastic through pjs, quick darns on socks.   Just so all have basic skills suitable for personal maintenance in our society.

              And with that would go some information about the problems from leaky homes that will cause health problems for decades to come. As someone says in a comment to the item below: "The reason old timber framed houses didn't rot is because they were drafty and had air circulating in the wall cavities."

              https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/health/93212072/the-cause-of-the-billion-dollar-price-tag-for-nzs-next-big-health-epidemic-leaky-buildings-and-hidden-mould 18/6/2017

              New Zealand's leaky buildings, which have been widely attributed to lax building regulations and sub-standard materials, include schools, prisons, and government buildings, as well as an estimated 100,000 New Zealand homes.

              Thomas Wutzler, a registered building surveyor from Wellington company Helfen, said changes to the Building Code had gone a long way toward fixing the problems, but homes were still being built "that are leaking and need significant remediation".


      • Peter 1 11.1.2

        So cold I can't concentrate on the pages before me.  Going outside to warm up (and this is after insulation in ceiling + underfloor…it used to be even worse)


        Or Or Or just turn on the heat pump.

        Sorry could not resist.


  12. Ad 12

    "Forget China – It's America's Own Economic System That's Broken"

    There's very little I can add to this article from Robert Reich, who compares the economies of China and the United States and argues that there are far more important places to look for the causes of US economic failure in wages than China. Namely: the dominance of US corporations over public policy which has crushed meaningful democracy. 


    It is particularly telling that Americans have little or no influence on public policy – which is why the Trump tax cut did so little for them.

    That’s the conclusion of professors Martin Gilens of Princeton and Benjamin Page of Northwestern, who analyzed 1,799 policy issues before Congress and found that “the preferences of the average American appear to have only a minuscule, near-zero, statistically non-significant impact upon public policy”.

    I'm on record disagreeing strongly with plenty about the Chinese government. It's great to see the finger pointed so hard and true at the failure for US citizens of the US economy as well.


    • A 12.1

      Hopefully that doesn't eventually bring the rest of the world down. 

    • AB 12.2

      “the preferences of the average American appear to have only a minuscule, near-zero, statistically non-significant impact upon public policy”.

      Interesting that the Gilens and Page article was published in 2014 – so most of the groundwork would have been done a couple of years earlier at least. The writing has been on the wall for a long time – am sure I have heard Chomsky mention this or similar research in some video clip years ago. But then – has this ever not been true for capitalist democracies? (Assuming that 'capitalist democracy' is not at some level an oxymoron.)

      • sumsuch 12.2.1

        Rich-rule, people-rule. But the former lifted up billions in the Third World while they dismayed us in the First. Realistic realism. Zertainly we should never let control leave us again, and is that what Mike lamb-burger whatsisname egomaniac still-thinks-he's-a-figure-in-the-Left intended?

    • Dennis Frank 12.3

      Well, it proves the point me & others have often made over the years:  the elites ruling the world use democracy to mask their exercise of power.  So whichever clown the people elect becomes the next media distraction…

      • WeTheBleeple 12.3.1

        Absolutely. This is why pinning hope for the world on something like getting trump out of power seems an exercise in futility. We can't wait for some government to keep their promises to the great unwashed as they're largely bought and paid for by people who care not a jot about us except as production units.

        So how do we turn from this model?

        For NZ I think MMP is a step in the right direction as The Greens are not the sellouts many make them out to be. Likewise NZ First. Labour the lefty-light neo-lib leaners are thus scrutinised by both left and right within their own Government.

        While National chases cars down the road.

        Maybe, seeing as Governments are largely middle men for corporates – billionaires, it is the corporates and their ownership who need to be addressed. But how?


        • Dennis Frank

          how do we turn from this model?

          Good question.  I agree that the Greens have given MMP credibility, but mostly in the current govt – since NZF adopted the centrist leverage position I expected the Greens to occupy after MMP began here.  By retaining the leftist alignment past its use-by date they handed Winston the position of maximum power instead.

          Representative democracy is always a numbers game, with rules.  An alternative political movement can succeed unconstrained by such rules, if the design is right and suitable members form a team as nucleus.  Networks are more functionally flexible than hierarchies.  I've spent years brainstorming the design features, but co-design is also an option (since it is more organic).

          Any such enterprise is doomed to failure if it is partisan.  Nonalignment is the only way to transcend traditional politics.  You'll be wondering how to do that in a world in which money is power, eh?  Short answer:  incorporating an incentive structure that is non-monetary.  Long answer:  giving members a sense of mutual benefits from collaboration that are more emotional & spiritual than mercenary.  Consider the feel-good factor, and how folks feel good in a team.  What team ethic & performance makes it happen, etc. 

          A key design feature is the interface with identity politics:  an altpolitical movement can succeed in the climate-change era if the team dedicates itself to operating as a conduit for resilience design in the broader political context.  If people see themselves as part of a solution to the global problem, their identity can readily morph to encompass operating in team & movement contexts.

          • WeTheBleeple

            You are clearly onto something there. This rang bells:

            'giving members a sense of mutual benefits from collaboration that are more emotional & spiritual than mercenary.  Consider the feel-good factor, and how folks feel good in a team.'

            I love working in a team, but only those with ethical/altruistic goals. Purpose is transformational at a personal level, a society with common purpose could, I dunno, beat back the Nazis…

            People tend to insane things to try lend purpose to their lives. This desire to belong, to be significant – that might be harnessed in ways that go beyond personal ambition.

            But not everyone desires to act as Kaitiaki like myself. I guess an end goal needs to encompass a range of 'desires' that collectively lead us in a positive direction. We need a real good artist to paint such a picture.

            Agree that saving the planet is the common goal right before us.

          • greywarshark

            I like the approach DF.   I had something all typed up just recently and then lost it.   I need to get better saving I think.   I will put it up next week – just a comment but I think with an innnovative approach that will get young people involved. 

            • Dennis Frank

              I've got a couple of web-designers reconfiguring my own site for this purpose.  They've spent a year on it so far & reckon they're close to putting it back online.  Our deal is that it isn't high-priority, so they do it when convenient (have to make a living from businesses).  Such is my faith in the resilience of business as usual.  devil

  13. cleangreen 13

    What a joke to see the truckers in the news, upset at the state of our roads.

    When they were the ones that have almost destroyed them by forcing NZTA to alllow bigger, longer, heavier, trucks on our regional roads that have no ‘underbase’ solid enough to carry their bigger, longer, heavier, trucks in the first place.

    These truckers were warned about our roads being destroyed back when they lobbyed for the HPMV 63 tonne trucks back in 2005 by Australian roading engineers who already found that placing biggrer longer, heavier, trucks on their light roads would do the same there.

    So truckers ‘don’t cry wolf now’ since we all know it was your trucks that have been responsible for wrecking our public roads that you as the ‘current user’ should now pay for fixing them all under “the user pays policy”.

    Best you get behind using rail to move your freight as the cost to keep the road bills from bankrupting us all is now calling for common sense to use rail now.

    Or use this and follow the ‘Michigan US’ plan.


    Experts weigh in on how much Michigan’s heavy trucks damage the state’s roads
    Paul Egan, Detroit Free PressPublished 6:30 a.m. ET April 19, 2019 | Updated 10:11 p.m. ET April 19, 2019
    Michigan motorists are concerned about Michigan’s roads and the state’s highest-in-the-nation truck weights. Paul Egan, Detroit Free Press
    LANSING — Michigan’s highest-in-the-nation gross truck weights are responsible for significant damage to state roads and bridges, experts say, despite years of denials from the Michigan Department of Transportation.
    The issue is an important one as residents consider Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s plan to “fix the damn roads” by hiking the tax on both regular and diesel fuels by 45 cents per gallon but not changing Michigan’s truck weight laws. The plan would raise an extra $2.5 billion a year, of which $1.9 billion would be spent on roads and bridges.



    • ianmac 13.1

      Too right cleangreen. Just one truck can cause damage let alone log processions of them. A bit like that Trump cartoon of Trump starting the fire then putting it out then claiming to be such a great man for putting out the fire. Hypocrites! 

  14. greywarshark 14

    What's on google about Tasmania and NZ.  Is there an advantage for both by combining – say sister communities rather than the usual cities or states?

    Thoughts of change in Tasmania.    https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-01-07/should-tasmania-cut-ties-with-the-mainland/10687936

    Views from a new settler about Hobart and its points of interest. https://www.irishtimes.com/life-and-style/abroad/welcome-to-my-place-hobart-tasmania-1.3688066


  15. greywarshark 15

    [This comment is from Greywarshark. I accidentally binned it in the Trash because it had too many links and went into Auto-Moderation. My apologies – Incognito]

    What's on google about Tasmania and NZ.  Is there an advantage for both by combining – say sister communities rather than the usual cities or states?

    Thoughts of change in Tasmania.    https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-01-07/should-tasmania-cut-ties-with-the-mainland/10687936

    International education big business started in NZ, now sold to a private equity firm., in Asian countries and now Tasmania.  https://thepienews.com/news/acg-education-expands-australia/ |    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ACG_Education

    Views from a new settler about Hobart and its points of interest. https://www.irishtimes.com/life-and-style/abroad/welcome-to-my-place-hobart-tasmania-1.3688066


    Google headings on Tasmania – LGBT, Sport, firefighting, climate change, tourism, timber, gun law changes, no overdue library fines!

    FSC – Forest Stewardship Council  https://au.fsc.org/en-au

    https://www.echo.net.au/2019/06/call-halt-old-growth-logging-tasmania/ 7/6/2019

    https://www.theadvocate.com.au/story/6014646/forestry-company-faces-fsc-certification-audit/ The state-owned forestry body is seeking certification for 713,000 hectares of Permanent Timber Production Zone land.     It manages 812,000 hectares of timber production zoned land which includes 375,000 hectares of native forest available for wood harvesting, a 120,000-hectare reserve system, and 200,000 hectares of non-production forest.      SST is not seeking certification for 99,000 hectares of forest due to its plantation conversion history.

    https://blackwoodgrowers.com.au/ 'FSC supports illegal forestry in Australia"    The idea that public native forestry in Tasmania is “environmentally appropriate, socially beneficial and economically viable” (FSC’s very own criteria!) is complete and utter fantasy.

    Just the history of the industry over the last 5 years demonstrates the hypocrisy of this idea, never mind the forestry wars of the last 40+ years!!




    Health, Mental health, housing:

    2018 report on acute health services in Tasmania. http://www.parliament.tas.gov.au/ctee/Council/Reports/GAA/HST/gaa.inq.HST.rep.181116.INTERIMREPORTNO2.jm.001.pdf

    Review of the plea of insanity.    Tasmania Law Reform Institute 2019 https://www.utas.edu.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0016/1201093/Insanity_IP_A4_03_print.pdf

    http://housinginfo.com.au/tag/tas/   36 new social houses officially opened June 21, 2019

    The Hodgman Liberal Government is working through our Affordable Housing Strategy to reduce homelessness and provide more homes to Tasmanians in need. The only way we can address demand issues is by increasing supply. Today,

    • RedLogix 15.1

      Not a totally bad idea. I had a fourth form geography teacher who once, by way of putting NZ's military capability into perspective "We could probably successfully invade Tasmania … as long as the Australian's didn't mind".

      I'll probably get blast from either Lynn or EKF for this devil

    • WeTheBleeple 15.2

      Bill Mollison was Tasmanian. if they've got more of his ilk tucked away, let's sign up!

      (to a co-op, not a war, but that was funny RL)

  16. greywarshark 16

    Any advice about why when I remove link highlighting when working on a multi-link comment, that they turn back on when I submit the comment?

    I didn't want a great number of highlighted ones on the information comment I prepared about Tasmania, but they kept turning up.    So I have split the length of it so it's more digestible.   It is interesting whether we could form relationships with individual states for mutual benefit.   Oz as a whole seems to result in net benefits to them.    I don't know about Tasmania as to whether they and we have the same zeitgeist.

  17. greywarshark 17

    Hi Incognito.  Thanks.   As I say below I have been trying to make it easier to read by taking out some of the links – as you see there are so many live and I wanted to make it easier on the eye.   So I have put in a plea for advice about reducing the live ones.

    Any advice about why when I remove link from being 'live addresses' when working on a multi-link comment, that they turn back on when I submit the comment?  (I found by highlighting them and then using the unlink button at top it takes them down to ordinary text, but when I submit, bang there they are again.   Damn.)

     It is interesting whether we could form relationships with individual Oz states for mutual benefit.   Oz as a whole seems to result in net benefits to them.    I don't know about Tasmania as to whether they and we have the same zeitgeist.

    • Incognito 17.1

      I believe the system recognises a link even when it is plain text and converts it to an active link.

      My suggestion would be to break up long comments with (too) many links into smaller ones. It has the added benefits of improving readability and increasing the chances that people will read the lot.

      • greywarshark 17.1.1

        Yes you're right Incognito.   I just get so busy building it that I feel great relief when I think I have finished with something broadly worthwhile.

        And then bingo no, haven't won with this at all.  And I did think I did achieve unlinking with one I did before.   Aha I thought now I know how to do this.   But no – fail again.   So I will do it differently in future.   Perhaps put it all onto a Note that I save and then feed to the ducks a few morsels at a time!

        • WeTheBleeple

          From a word document to TS seems to be ok, but don't try it with poetry it'll make a mess or lend a space to every line. One day I'll figure that out too.

          Cos everyone loves poetry, right? cool

          • greywarshark

            Right and here is one about our frequent concerns.

            • WeTheBleeple

              Haha, he's got a bit of stagecraft aye.

              Here's one. 


              I sneezed some snot upon my jacket

              Flung it out with quite a racket

              Left it dangling unaware

              Bobbing like a tassel there


              I blew my nose jammed tissue paper

              Up each nostril like a scraper

              Twisted turned till all was clean

              Except that booger drip unseen


              I brought some trousers for a bargain

              Unaware the dyes were darker

              Round the crotch appeared to be

              A shadow where I’d had a pee


              None ever told me but I wore

              Those trousers for two years or more

              Mouths would grin behind hands snicker

              I think that fool has pissed his knickers.

  18. ianmac 18

    Good show:

    Israel Folau's GoFundMe campaign has been taken down after supporters donated more than $750,000 to support his legal battle against Rugby Australia.

    And money to be refunded. Even better.

    • Jimmy 18.1

      Who in their right mind would actually donate anything to him?

      • ianmac 18.1.1

        No doubt the religious right would welcome the opportunity to support a bloke who speaks their sort of extremism. Money for one of us they say. Not noticing that he is a very rich man and anyway a legal bill aiming for $3million?!

        • Bewildered

          Na people not donating to Israel per se just sending a one finger salute to the woke left Not something I would do, that is donate to Israel, guys a plonker

  19. Incognito 19

    The RBNZ wants two separate reports from ANZ New Zealand. The first will cover the New Zealand lender’s compliance with the Reserve Bank’s current and historic capital adequacy requirements and the second will assess the effectiveness of the bank's attestation and assurance framework, focusing on internal governance, risk management and internal controls. [my bold]


  20. Dennis Frank 20

    "Making New Zealand a major point of connection between China and South America will take a step forward tomorrow at a trilateral conference in Auckland.   Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker and Chinese Ambassador Wu Xi will present alongside experts from Chile, Argentina, China and New Zealand about the potential for new trilateral cooperation at the Building The Southern Link Conference.  The conference will focus on identifying the value New Zealand could generate as a conduit for multi-modal trade and passenger transit between China and South American nations."  http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO1906/S00275/conference-builds-nzs-next-big-china-opportunity.htm

    "New Zealand China Council Executive Director Stephen Jacobi says while the idea of the Southern Link has been around for some time, China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) provides momentum and a framework for New Zealand to turn the concept into action."

    We could call it our Node and Hub Initiative.  Aotearoa as functional hub in a network with Asia on one side and America on the other.  Think Big.

    "“The government has a Memorandum of Arrangement with China to build a work plan for participating in the BRI, and in April the Prime Minister underscored our willingness to identify opportunities for cooperation to complete the plan as soon as possible.  The Southern Link could achieve this by demonstrating the unique value New Zealand offers via our geographic location, expertise in customs handling and supply chain connectivity,” Mr Jacobi says."

    Sounds like a good plan.  When South American ships show up here we can take it seriously, eh?  Head for your local port, see if you can spot any…

  21. Dennis Frank 21

    So the Kiwibuild minister has decided not to attend the Kiwibuild Summit.  https://www.newshub.co.nz/home/politics/2019/06/duncan-garner-twyford-s-no-show-at-kiwibuild-conference-a-middle-finger-to-the-industry.html

    Twyford gives the building industry the middle finger?  Not necessarily.  Possible explanations abound:

    a)  His style is grandstanding.  Actual collaboration is too much like hard work.

    b)  He's sending his deputy instead, and fronting for the govt is excellent training for junior ministers.

    c)  He's been told not to front by his leader.  The pending reshuffle means his time fronting the project is over.

    d)  His leader decided that the conference is more likely to empower the industry toward successful collaboration if govt gets out of the way.  Steering the ship works better with all hands on the tiller?  Yes, if the appointed helmsman lacks a sense of direction in which to head.

    Here’s the intro: https://www.buildnz.com/summit/about/ – and there’s also an agenda page with this theme: Managing Risk, Reward and Relationships.


    • Fireblade 21.1

      E) Dentist appointment.

      F) Has Influenza.

      G) Hemorrhoids playing up.

      H) Something else.

    • WeTheBleeple 21.2


      e) was inspired by Oregon's Republicans to head for Idaho.

      • Dennis Frank 21.2.1

        Heh.  I recall giving their debut album airtime at The Squeeze.  That was a new-wave venue four of us operated in a basement in downtown Auckland '79/'80.  We played the latest trendy pop stuff through the pa in between band gigs.  Market economics forced us into catering for punk bands too.  Got interesting for a while…

        • WeTheBleeple

          Got a playlist on. 500 new wave songs. Flock of Seagulls right now

          'And I ran, I ran so far away.' smiley

          500 New Wave Songs about Oregon Republicans.

          I loved NZ punk scene, except for (some of) the skinheads. The ska ones were great fun. Jeepers, I had a union jack t-shirt. Wouldn't go down well today. It was a symbol of my pledge of allegiance to The Sex Pistols.

            • WeTheBleeple

              Nice find. 

              So many bands gone by the by. I thought various acts showed potential to have gone further but didn't. Hallelujah Picassos, The Johnnies, Casualty, Sticky Filth…

              And in the rock/metal scene, but influenced by many Taranaki punk bands as the scenes were enmeshed via The White Hart's green room: The Nod's guitarist, Darren Broughton, was simply in a class of his own.


    • Louis 21.3

      PM’s post cab presser @ -1.35

      "I’m not sure that’s a fair reflection, the minister received I understand sometime ago, an invitation. The minister is well aware that I prefer not to give leave on Mondays for cabinet particularly when a minister has a paper that needs to be taken through as was the case with minister Twyford. Minister Salesa attended that conference, he attended that last year, this is mostly just a matter of cabinet being the absolute priority and ministers know that… I don’t see this issue would of arisen had we had the event on a day other than a Monday…”

    • Blazer 21.4

      Twyford has the worst job in NZ politics.

      Comes across to me as sincere and competent.

      Has the deck stacked against him..the FIRE economy /MSM…hope he retains his portfolio..who else would want it!

      • Dennis Frank 21.4.1

        Fair enough.  I'd rather she shifts him to another portfolio.  I'd give the hot potato to David Parker, or even Andrew Little, to put it in more capable hands.

        This morning on Garner's panel they discussed it, and both panelists (Don Brash & the Maori woman whose name I can't recall) surprised me with their lack of criticism.  She said she'd been to a venue where he was speaking about it and was impressed at his grasp of the situation.

        People management skills could be his problem.  Whatever, comprehending it and being able to lead the process satisfactorily are two different things:  the former is a necessary condition, but it isn't a sufficient condition.

      • Gabby 21.4.2

        He may not have twigged that the private sector is only in it for the taxpayer money.

    • Anne 21.5

      He had to attend Cabinet because he was presenting two papers. Probably to do with the Kiwibuild reset which he needed Cabinet to sign off on pronto.

      • Dennis Frank 21.5.1

        Seems a valid reason, eh?  Garner was peeved because Twyford has turned down eleven requests to guest on his show lately.  It's the old `two sides to every story'.  Also, Garner is doing the MC job at the Kiwibuild Summit. 

        Twyford's stand-in seemed quite capable in her interviews today.  What impression have you formed of her, Anne?

        • Anne

          Hello Dennis,

          I guess the stand-in was Jenny Salesa who has the associate housing minister role plus several other associate portfolios. I have never met her in person but she seems to be highly regarded among her political peers. She's well qualified for the roles having been involved in high profile positions inside health and education facilities prior to her entering parliament. Quite impressive:


          • Dennis Frank

            Yes, definitely one to watch.  Perhaps she will feature in the reshuffle.  Solid track record, no evident baggage, presents well, articulate.

    • KJT 21.6

      None of the above.

      Right wing media speaks with"forked tongue" as usual.

      You should know better.

  22. greywarshark 22

    I don't know if anyone has put this up – but if so it is worth multiple mentions.   The Oregon, USA politicians who have gone AWOL because they couldn't stand the aggravations of doing their job and trying to plan for the future instead of just revelling as good-time-johnnies in the present.


    Oregon's Democrats, who have a clear Senate majority, want to pass landmark climate change legislation. Local Republicans have fled to stop that happening.   This weekend, the state capitol had to shut down altogether amid apparent security threats from militia groups.

    Oregon Democrats are trying to become the second US state to pass an ambitious "cap and trade" climate plan.

    House Bill 2020 would set overall limits on state carbon emissions, with permits or allowances auctioned off to polluting industries.   The plan aims to encourage businesses to switch to green technology, with the goal of slashing emissions to 80 percent below 1990 levels by 2050.

    (California introduced one in 2013, six years ago. Apparently no other USA state have followed the same system.)

    Ontario, Canada had a cap and trade system, link below.
    But the web page says that this was introduced by an earlier government and now the site posts this statement.

    Effective July 3, 2018, we cancelled the cap and trade regulation and prohibited all trading of emission allowances.

    We have developed a plan to wind down the program.

    • McFlock 22.1

      Apparently, when they're white they're "militia threats" not "terrorist threats".

  23. McFlock 23

    So WSJ is reporting (paywalled if you've used up your free samples) that the Iran attacks agreed at breakfast with Bolton and Pompeo and accepted there would be casualties, but then later in the day received casualty estimates from the Pentagon that other administration officials feel were "worst case scenario".


  24. A 24

    Great news on the bank deposit scheme. 

  25. Observer Tokoroa 25

     Hi Mr/Mrs Greywarshark

    You know everything – and everything about everyone. You have some sought of garbage collection scheme within your non stop systems. You may have simple mental problems. Perhaps.

    What is damaging is that too many illiterate people, or uninformed people on here,  are rubbishing NZ Pharmac, which has saved thousands upon thousands, upon thousands of lives. Deny it if you will you nutter.

    You by your stupidty, are guiding the troubled illiterate people into destruction of our Excellent NZ Pharmac.

    You should be writing to NZ Pharmac and apologising to all their brilliant Staff.  Unlike You, they have done outstanding work.  Trust you to want to destroy NZ Pharmac.

    But I do realise you seem to have no humility.  No sense of Balance.  You disgust me !




  26. Morrissey 26

    If you think the BBC is more "trustworthy" than Rupert Murdoch's Fox News, you're either dishonest or you have not listened to its dire broadcasts for a long time. 

    Monday 24 June 2019

    According to British State Radio, the U.S. is "not afraid of Iran." This crackpot inversion of reality, portraying the aggressor as being "determined to show it is not afraid" of the party it is attacking, is perfectly in tune with British State Radio's similar coverage of Israeli aggression in Gaza and the Occupied West Bank.

    Today's 4 p.m. news on RNZ National featured a "report" by British State Radio's Chris Buckler, who seemed to possess not even the slightest sense of the absurdity of the words that he read out, or that there was anything wrong with the bizarre inversion of reality spilling from the mouth of Crazy John…. 

    Chris Buckler (BBC): Having ruled out a military strike, the United States is DETERMINED to show it is not afraid of a military confrontation with Iran.

    Nat. Security Adviser John Bolton: Iran should not mistake U.S. prudence and discretion for weakness….

    Just a few minutes earlier, on the Pre-Panel, Ali Ventura had talked about how easily fake news can spread, citing the "cell phones cause cancer" hysteria as an example. It had been repeated all over the media, she said—"even on the BBC, which is, y' know, a pretty trusted site."



    • Dennis Frank 26.1

      Could be the drone was actually flying the boundary, in which case both claims could compete equally for validity.  I wouldn't put that past the yanks at all.

      I agree that the BBC reporter misinterpreted Bolton's signal.  Lotta media folk don't do subtlety.  Trump's decision not to strike Iran presumably was due to having no valid basis upon which to do so.  Wouldn't surprise me if he went fishing for support from US allies and got rejected privately. 

      I doubt he's a big enough fool to trigger both Russia & China into shifting from neutrality towards pro-Iranian alignment.  Younger Trump zealots probably got too gung-ho.  Bolton seems to have been advising Iran not to misread Trump's back-down.  This brinkmanship is like a poker game.

      • Professor Longhair 26.1.1

        Pertinent observations from Mr Dennis Frank. Well done, sir.

        • Dennis Frank

          Thanks professor, but I don't use them antiquated titles.  Hey, I was fishing for a response on whether Russia & China are really non-aligned.  Do you have a view on that?  I've seen stuff in the past that suggests some pro-Iranian signalling.  Since both regimes are anti-islamic, rather a stretch for them to make it anything more than covert.  Perhaps just tactical to defeat US foreign policy…

      • solkta 26.1.2

        Could be the drone was actually flying the boundary,

        Then clearly the Iranians are at fault, they should have only shot one wing off the plane.

        • Dennis Frank

          Yeah, the one in their air-space.  smiley  A message too subtle for Trump to comprehend though.  Neither side released the actual location of the drone to the global media.  Tacit signalling that reality doesn't matter, only competing impressions do.  A sad state of affairs.

  27. Eco maori 27

    Kia ora The Am Show. 

    I agree with that but its not just the ANZ bank issue with the whare being sold cheap to his wife.  The whole banking system is full of CEOS the 00.1% who live in a life of excess wasteing shareholders money. 

    I had a good cause on givealittle I was asking for funding to sue the NZ POLICE drag there ASSS  over the hot coals of a courthouse the police interfered in that like they interfered in all my attempts to higher a lawyer. the POLICE are not there to protect the public they protect their image first and foremost cannot have anyone known they are ROTTEN.

    There you go Duncan our government has made heaps of good changes to the housing sector before the changes there was only 18 % first home buyers now they number 25 %  as it should be about the tangata and not the wealthy makeing millions off housing at the expense of the common person. 

    Russel Norman head of NZ green peace Limiting the use of CFC refrigeration gases is good its saveing our Ozone that protects us from the harmful solar radiation minimizeing the cases of skin cancer cool.

    Amanda  I agree high profile people should think about the damage to others that there words can cause. 

    Good on Winston for backing Railways and for calling for shonky to step down from ANZ bank .

    People are living in cars not mainly because of money the reason they are in cars is because there are NO houses for them to rent.

    Paddy I do think that that the linescooters Escooters users should have a helmet. 

    Ka kite ano 






  28. Eco maori 28

    The Papatuanuku media is controlled by money the oil barons are spending big time on bloking our reality on Human caused climate change


    Arrests at protest over New York Times' 'unacceptable' climate coverage

    • Protesters block avenue between Port Authority and NYT
    • Extinction Rebellion calls for better coverage of climate crisis

    A climate change protest orchestrated by the Extinction Rebellion activist group briefly blocked Eighth Avenue in New York on Saturday afternoon, between the Port Authority transit hub and the home of the New York Times.

    The New York police department (NYPD) said 70 people were arrested as they called for more effective media coverage of the dangers of climate change, in a dramatic demonstration that saw people stage a die-in in front of the newspaper building and disrupt traffic in midtown Manhattan

    One protester, Donna Nicolino, told the Guardian she was ready to be arrested, because “we want the New York Times as well as all the other media to treat climate change as the crisis it is”.

    She joined a line of people with arms linked on West 40th Street and Eighth Avenue, blocking the road. The group remained until they were arrested by New York City police officers.

    “The lack of coverage of the climate crisis is completely unacceptable,” said Becca Trabin, a member of Extinction Rebellion’s press and fundraising teams. “It’s a public safety crisis on a global scale ka kite ano link below. 



  29. Eco maori 29

    This is the effects of Human Caused Climate Change it is accelerating Global Warming that gives more power to tropical hurricanes that turn into Super Hurricanes that devastate anything in it's path the deniers don't care because they will be hiding in their million dollars storm shelters. 

    'Hell is coming': week-long heatwave begins across Europe

    Authorities have urged children and older people to stay indoors and issued severe warnings against dehydration and heatstroke as an unprecedented week-long heatwave begins its advance across continental Europe.

    Meteorologists said temperatures would reach or even exceed 40C from Spain to Switzerland as hot air was sucked up from the Sahara by the combination of a storm stalling over the Atlantic and high pressure over central Europe.

    Dutchman swims 121-mile ice-skating route hit by climate crisis

    High humidity meant it would feel like 47C, experts warned. “El infierno [hell] is coming,” tweeted the TV meteorologist Silvia Laplana in Spain, where the AEMET weather service forecast temperatures of 42C by Thursday in the Ebro, Tagus, Guadiana and Guadalquivir valleys and warned of an “extreme risk” of forest fires.

    Ka kite ano link below. 




  30. Eco maori 30

    Some Eco Maori Music for the minute. 


  31. Eco maori 31

    Kia ora Newshub. 

    I say its un acceptable that the CAA didn't investigate the harassment by a pilot trainer who he has power over his students. 

    It's is good that the guy who got caught with a camera in The NZ American embassy got 4 months home detention. Times are changing its good to see the law work even if you're a big ika.

    Paddy I say that there should be a independence inquiry into the JUSTICE system failure to keep that man who killed Nicole and another girl in exactly the same way ka kite ano.

  32. Eco maori 32

    Kia ora te ao Maori news. 

    It would be awesome if Meka Whaitiri of Ngati Porou got a job back in the government cabinet. simon is going to attack that move or anything he thinks he can use to damage our government reputation. 

    I agree with the rangatahi of course we have to listen to them as they are our future we need to awhi there mana .

    Very good the Royal Commission inquiry into state abuse of tamariki in the states care this is long overdue. 

    I tau toko Wahine being alcohol and smoke free while hapu /pregnant. It's a good video Showing the harm that can be caused by smoking and alcohol to the pepi .

    Kai pai to the Coalition government backing of kiwi rail this is bringing back our reliable rail lines like we had just 20 years ago cool less carbon being burned and safer roads with less trucking = less damage to our roads = lower maintenance costs = safer roads as well. It was about 41 years ago that a kau matua was made redundant from the Railways that's when they started dismantling our world best Railroad.  100% pure te reo Maori tourism would be massive to see

    Ka kite ano  P.S Eco Maori never gives up 

  33. Eco maori 33

    Kia ora The Am Show. 

    Very good Loreal personal care products company is donating heaps of personal care products to our vulnerable rangatahi ka pai. 

    Amey thanks for all your years of mahi for Aotearoa all the best on your new journey. 

    Blair I say a nation cancer agency would be very good  ma te wa our government is doing all it can to make our society a more humane healthy society  kia kaha .

    No Duncan colonialism is still happening and affecting Tangata Whenua O Aotearoa NOW. 

    AI and robotics automation manufacturering is going to be a big game changer it will give more power to the 00.1 % as they won't need Labour te people to manufacture their goods less money distribution to the lower classes more money flowing to the 00.1 % A universal wage will be needed to counteract that phenomenon. 

    Reporters job safety I have all ready seen AI reporting the NEWS all jobs will be under threat the jobs that are to hard for robots to compete in would  be Manuel labouring jobs in the feild. 

    Ka kite ano 

  34. Eco maori 34

    Some Eco Maori music for the minute. 


  35. Eco maori 35

    Eco Maori that the good people from Ghosts fishing doing great mahi 

    Ghost fishing: Cleaning up the rubbish in our waters

    The Ghost Fishing NZ team with some of the rubbish cleared out of Oriental Bay on their recent dive Photo: RNZ / Ana ToveyThe Ghost Fishing NZ team with some of the rubbish cleared out of Oriental Bay on their recent dive

    RNZ visual journalist Ana Tovey joined Ghost Fishing NZ on one of their regular clean-ups at Oriental Bay in Wellington Harbour, to find out more about their work clearing the rubbish out of our waters ka kite ano link below. 



  36. Eco maori 36

    Kia ora Newshub. 

    The principal are making waves why didn't they put forward their wants before now time to settle and carry on educating our tamariki. 

    The Pike river mine has been one big ass covering job from the start big boss ducking for cover. I believe that the Whanau of Pike River mine should no what causes the explosion. 

    I seen that story about a new geyser in some backyard  in Rotorua this morning she has had to move house it shook the house she said it must have been scary. 

    Ka kite ano 

  37. Eco maori 37

    Kia ora te ao Maori news.

    Charlie Berryman condolences to his whanau for their losses of a Papa and father 

    That is a big geyser in the back yard of a Rotorua resident  Susan I missed the video my computer was frozen  I wonder why 

    Pirpi Bartlett whanau good on you for asking question about what happened to him and what caused his passing in a accident in a foresty harvesting accident. They have every right to find the TRUTH on his death condolences to Kia kaha keep the pressure on the companys they don't value and respect tangata whenua this will force them to Show us respect. 

    I say that the its good for indigenous people around the Papatuanuku should work together to help lift our mokopuna lives up to the highest rung on their ladders of life. 

    Teachers and Principals need to settle??????????????????????????

    Ka kite ano 


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  • Boris Johnson Goes Down
    It hasn't been a good week for the Conservatives, pollwise.  All major recent polls are showing their lead shrinking.Comparing each pollster's current (between 29/11 and 22/11) and previous most recent poll.Com Res - Conservative lead down 3 points.You Gov - Conservative lead down 1 point.Kantar - Conservative lead down 4 ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Interesting
    Within quick succession, Countdown maths wizard and twitterer Rachel Riley, alleged comedian David Baddiel and prominent lawyer Andrew Julius have all expressed very similar opinions / ideas:
    These #3billboards are going round London today, organised by ex-Labour people, horrified by what their party has become. Their principles haven’t changed, they’re ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Damn the Polls
    So, there have been a bunch of bad polls out for Labour, and even the Leftie's friend, Survation, have recently given the Conservatives a rip-snorting 11% lead.  You Gov's much vaunted MRP poll - which pretty much nailed the result in 2015 - is currently predicting a comfortable majority for ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Europe declares an emergency
    The European Parliament has voted overwhelmingly to declare a climate emergency:The European parliament has declared a global “climate and environmental emergency” as it urged all EU countries to commit to net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. The vote came as scientists warned that the world may have already crossed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • A Bi-Partisan Commitment To X-ing “P”.
    Pure Fear: Worse than Heroin, this drug’s addictive power was terrifying. People under its influence didn’t drift off to Elysium. Nor did it persuade inadequate individuals that they could conquer the world. No, this drug – pure crystal methamphetamine, “P” for short – unlocked the gates of Hell itself. It ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Advice about measles: when ignorance is definitely not a virtue
    As the rate of measles infection, and of deaths, continues to climb in Samoa, antivaccination activists infectious disease proponents seem intent on doubling down on their claims about vaccination. (Check pretty much any news-media FB post about measles & you’ll see exactly what I mean.) Unfortunately, some of them have ...
    SciBlogsBy Alison Campbell
    2 weeks ago
  • Samoa’s devastating measles epidemic – why and how bad?
    Samoa are experiencing a devastating measles epidemic. It is possible that 2-3% of the population will ultimately be infected by the time it is over. Hopefully the mass immunisation campaign currently under way can mitigate some of this, for many it is too late. The first question many people ask ...
    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    2 weeks ago
  • “It’s basic rights we are defending”: the Meghan Murphy interview
    Meghan Murphy is a Canadian writer and journalist She runs the Feminist Current website which she founded in 2012.  She was a keynote speaker for the Feminism2020 conference in Wellington this month. When Massey University cancelled the original venue booking Feminism2020 was hosted in Parliament by MP David Seymour. Meghan ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • A week of protests in Colombia
    Text and photos by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh Colombia has lived through one week of protests against the economic measures taken by president Duque. What looked like a protest that would fizzle out after its first day on November 21st is still going strong. Part of the reason for the continuance ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Anti-neutrinos–When you are your own opposite
    Around a million billion pass through you each second, almost all originating from our sun, but few of them are likely to interact with you enroute. I was reading in a physics magazine earlier in the week about the nature of neutrinos. These are extremely numerous elementary particles, but only ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    2 weeks ago
  • Exoplanets, life, and the danger of a single study
    By Pallab Ghosh There’s value in covering new research advances, even when the underlying science is unsettled. But there are also risks. The recent announcement that scientists discovered water on the planet K2-18b, 110 light years away, prompted a media swoon. News stories, including a piece written by me, billed ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • The Intersex Continuum
    I wrote this review a couple of years ago when I was still in the process of getting my head around the politics of transgenderism, and specifically the claim that intersex conditions lend support to the notion that sex is ‘socially constructed’. Since writing this review I have come across ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Leaving us with the bill
    Two weeks ago, Malaysian-owned oil company Tamarind declared it was insolvent and went into administration after a failed offshore drilling campaign. Tamarind apparently specialises in buying oil fields at the end of their life and trying to squeeze out the last few drops of pollution. But part of their scam ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • How much does flying contribute to climate change?
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz How much does our use of air travel contribute to the ...
    SciBlogsBy Shaun Hendy
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: The task before us
    Two weeks ago, the Zero Carbon Act became law. Right this moment, the Climate Change Commisison will be working on its initial budgets for 2022-25 and 2026-2030, and the UN has just given them a very clear steer:Countries must make an unprecedented effort to cut their levels of greenhouse gases ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Among my favourite asteroids: (2309) Mr. Spock
    Minor planet/asteroid (2309) Mr. Spock is named not for the character in Star Trek, but for a cat that was itself imperturbable, logical, intelligent and had pointed ears In a preceding blog post I introduced one of my favourite asteroids, (2472) Bradman, and also mentioned (6581) Sobers amongst a few ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    2 weeks ago
  • Measles deaths and antivax misinformation
    Today the death toll from measles in Samoa rose to 32. All but four of the dead were less than 5 years old. Absolutely terrible, heartbreaking, news. That statistic alone should be enough to give the lie to the common claim by antivaccination activists plague enthusiasts that “measles is a ...
    SciBlogsBy Alison Campbell
    2 weeks ago
  • Colombia: the state murder of Dilan Cruz
    by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh It is late here in Bogotá, almost 11.30pm on Monday the 25th of November as I write this. The day began full of hope with yet more massive marches throughout the country, a mix of the International Day of Non-Violence Against Women and the National Strike. ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Anti-fluoride propagandists appear not to read the articles they promote
    Anti-fluoride activists are rubbing their hands in glee over what they claim is “yet another study” showing fluoride harms the brains of children. But their promotion relies on IQ relationships which the paper’s authors acknowledge disappearing when outliers or other factors are considered. And they completely ignore other relationships ...
    2 weeks ago
  • The rise and collapse of classical political economy
    The feature below is the conclusion of A History of Economic Thought, whose author was a leading Marxist economist in Russia in the early 20th century, Isaac Ilyich Rubin.  The book arose from a course he ran at Moscow University following the Russian Revolution.  First published in Russian in 1929, ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Among my favourite asteroids: (2472) Bradman
    There are many thousands of asteroids with formal names, some humdrum but other more noteworthy (depending on your predilections). One of my favourites, the name of which I was involved in suggesting, is (2472) Bradman, named for the Australian cricketing great.  As a minor planet (synonym: asteroid) spotter, I have ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    2 weeks ago
  • Some cheap soundbites i thought up while reading about the underwhelming Conservative manifesto
    Tory manifesto: big on austerity, low on promise, non-existent on delivery. The Tories: the party so big on ambition they couldn't be arsed writing a manifesto. MLK: "I have a dream!"BJ: "I'll just have a nap." Labour: Broadband!Tories: Narrow minds! Labour have hope, dreams and ambition. The Tories will save ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Measles vaccination required to travel to islands and Phillipines
    The Ministry of Health has announced that “people under the age of 50 travelling from New Zealand to Samoa, Tonga, Philippines and Fiji” are now on the list of national priorities for MMR vaccination. Given the outbreaks of measles in Samoa, Tonga, Philippines and Fiji, the Ministry of Health is ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    2 weeks ago
  • Giving the finger to Beijing
    Hong Kong has been protesting for six months for, demanding democracy, human rights, and an end to police violence. Today, they went to the polls in district council elections - a low-level of government with virtually no power, similar to community boards in New Zealand. But while the positions themselves ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Colombia’s national strike
    Text and photos by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh On Friday 22nd of November a curfew came into effect and troops were deployed on the streets, here in Bogota. It was the first time since September 1977 that a curfew had been imposed on the city. The decision was a cynical pre-planned ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago

  • Final steps for racing industry reform
    Racing Minister Winston Peters has welcomed the first reading of the Racing Industry Bill in parliament today. This is the second of two Bills that have been introduced this year to revitalise New Zealand’s racing industry. “Our domestic racing industry has been in serious decline.  The Government is committed to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Funding to promote New Zealand Sign Language initiatives
    Minister for Disability Issues, Carmel Sepuloni, is pleased to announce that $291,321 is to be awarded to national and local community initiatives to maintain and promote the use of New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL). “New Zealand is one of the few countries  in the world where Sign Language is an ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    14 hours ago
  • How New Zealand defines and recognises veterans
    Minister for Veterans Ron Mark has announced today the Coalition Government’s initial response to work completed by the independent statutory body, the Veterans’ Advisory Board. “When Professor Ron Paterson completed his review of the Veterans’ Support Act in 2018, he made a number of recommendations, including one which I referred ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    15 hours ago
  • Government to fund lion’s share of Ohakea water scheme
    The Government will fund the bulk of the cost of a rural water supply for the Ohakea community affected by PFAS contamination, Environment Minister David Parker announced today at a meeting of local residents. This new water scheme will provide a reliable and clean source of drinking water to the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Prime Minister statement on White Island eruption
    I have had the opportunity to be briefed on the details of the volcanic eruption of Whakaari/White Island, off the coast of Whakatane in the Bay of Plenty.  The eruption happened at 2.11pm today.  It continues to be an evolving situation.  We know that there were a number of tourists ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Govt funds $100k for weather-hit communities
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare have today confirmed initial Government support of $100,000 for communities affected by the severe weather that swept across the South Island and lower North Island over the weekend. The contribution will be made to Mayoral relief funds across the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Death of NZ High Commissioner to Cook Islands
    New Zealand's High Commissioner to the Cook Islands, Tessa Temata, died in Palmerston North over the weekend, Foreign Minister Winston Peters said today. Ms Temata, 52, had recently returned to New Zealand for medical treatment. "On behalf of the Government and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, we extend ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Wellington rail upgrade full steam ahead
    Transport Minister Phil Twyford today announced construction is underway on Wellington commuter rail upgrades which will mean more frequent services and fewer breakdowns. The upgrades include converting the Trentham to Upper Hutt single track section to a double track, with a new signalling system, upgraded stations and level crossings, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Defence Climate Change Implementation Plan released
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark and Minister for Climate Change James Shaw have announced the release of a Defence Climate Change Implementation Work Plan, titled Responding to the Climate Crisis: An Implementation Plan.  The plan sets out a series of recommendations based on the 2018 New Zealand Defence Assessment, The ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Govt releases funding to support South Canterbury
    A medium-scale adverse event has been declared for the South Canterbury district, which will see up to $50,000 in funding made available to support farming communities which have been significantly affected by recent heavy rain and flooding in the area, says Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor. “Two weeks of solid rain ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Speech at launch of Rethinking Plastics Report
    Thank you Professor Juliet Gerrard and your team for the comprehensive and extremely helpful report and recommendations. Thank you too to all the stakeholders and interested parties who have contributed ideas and thinking to it. “Making best practice, standard practice” is a great framework for change and the action plan ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Govt pledges next steps on plastic waste
    The Government will phase out more single-use plastics following the success of its single-use plastic bag ban earlier this year and the release today of a pivotal report for dealing with waste. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has welcomed the Rethinking Plastics in Aotearoa New Zealandreport, released by her Chief Science Advisor ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • International student enrolments grow in universities and the regions
    International education continues to thrive as the Government focuses on quality over quantity, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said. The tuition revenue from international education increased to $1.16 billion last year with the average tuition fee per student increasing by $960. The total number of international students enrolled in New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Speech to Government Economics Network 2019 Conference
    I want to talk about one of the most pressing issues in our national life: the housing crisis and the poor performance of our cities. The argument I want to make to you is that generations of urban land use policy have lacked a decent grounding in economics. The consequences ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • DHB leadership renewed and strengthened
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says new appointments to DHBs represent a significant changing of the guard, with 13 new chairs including four Māori chairs. Today 76 appointments have been announced to complement elected board members, as well as eight elected members appointed as either chair or deputy chair.  Four ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Tabuteau to advance New Zealand’s trade and political interests with European partners
    Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Foreign Affairs, Fletcher Tabuteau, is travelling to Germany, Poland, Austria, and Spain next week to bolster New Zealand’s political and trade relationships in Europe. While in Spain, Mr Tabuteau will represent New Zealand at the 14th Asia-Europe (ASEM) Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in Madrid. “New Zealand strongly supports ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Statement from the Prime Minister on Kris Faafoi
    “I’ve spoken to Minister Faafoi, who has apologised for his poor handling of this issue,” Jacinda Ardern said. “I have confidence in Kris as a hardworking and effective Minister, but this should have been dealt with in a much clearer manner, and I’ve made my views on that very clear ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Tonga-New Zealand Joint Ministerial Forum
    Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters met with Tongan Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pohiva Tu'i'onetoa in Wellington today. The pair signed a Statement of Partnership setting out joint priorities for cooperation out to 2023.  “We welcomed Prime Minister Tu'i'onetoa on his first visit to New Zealand as Prime Minister. Tonga ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Shooting in Kurow
    The Minister of Police Stuart Nash says his sympathies are with the family of a man who died after being shot by Police in Kurow. “Initial reports are that Police were called by a family member to help the man who was threatening to harm himself,” Mr Nash says. “However ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government delivers funding boost for ethnic communities
    Ethnic communities will be able to plan and deliver more community initiatives thanks to an increase in Government funding, Minister for Ethnic Communities Hon Jenny Salesa said today. “Ensuring Aotearoa New Zealand is a place we can all be proud to call home has been a key priority of our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Govt supports Southland farmers in sustainability
    Healthier waterways, better productivity and farmer wellbeing are front and centre in a new project involving more than 1000 Southland farmers and growers. Minister of Agriculture Damien O’Connor today announced that the Thriving Southland Change and Innovation Project is the first region-wide extension programme supported by the $229 million Sustainable ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Flood of support for Top of the South catchment
    Work to look after nature and restore freshwater quality in Te Hoiere/Pelorus River catchment is getting a significant boost, thanks to new Government funding support Minister for Conservation Eugenie Sage announced in Canvastown today. “Every New Zealander should be able to swim in their local river without getting sick, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Eight Queen’s Counsel appointed under new criterion
    Eight Queen’s Counsel have been appointed under a process that includes the new criterion of a commitment to improving access to justice, Attorney-General David Parker announced today. “The new criterion was included this year. It emphasises that excellence and leadership in the profession can be seen through a wider, community ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Major expansion for Wellington’s Onslow College
    Onslow College in Wellington will get 20 new classrooms for more than 400 students, Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. The much-needed investment will relieve growth pressure the school has been experiencing for some time. Seven existing classrooms which have deteriorated over time will also be replaced, bringing the total ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Talented young Kiwis awarded PM’s Scholarships to Asia and Latin America
    More than 250 young New Zealanders will add international experience to their education, thanks to the latest Prime Minister’s Scholarships for Asia (PMSA) and Latin America (PMSLA), Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. This round of scholarships supports 252 recent graduates or current students to undertake study, research or internships ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government to improve competitiveness and transparency in the retail fuel market
    Consumers will benefit from a more competitive, transparent retail fuel market as a result of changes the Government will be making in response to the findings of the Commerce Commission’s study of the fuel sector. “We accept the Commission’s findings and, as the Prime Minister has said, we’re ready to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • More cancer medicines for more people
    Five new cancer medicines have now been funded this year, meaning thousands of people have more treatment options PHARMAC has today announced that it has approved two new medicines for funding – fulvestrant for breast cancer and olaparib for ovarian cancer. This follows earlier decisions on advanced lung cancer treatment alectinib, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government acts to sort out electoral ‘coin toss’ problem
    The Minister of Local Government, Hon Nanaia Mahuta says the Government will consider making changes to local electoral legislation before the 2022 elections to fix the problems that have arisen where elections are settled by a coin toss.  The Minister says the recount process in the Murupara- Galatea ward at ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • NZ to Join IMO Convention to Reduce Ship Emissions
    New Zealand will sign up to new international maritime regulations to reduce ship emissions and lift air quality around ports and harbours, Associate Transport Minister Julie Anne Genter announced today. Subject to completion of the Parliamentary treaty examination process, New Zealand will sign up to Annex VI of MARPOL, an ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Bill to empower urban development projects
    New legislation to transform our urban areas and create sustainable, inclusive and thriving communities will tomorrow be introduced to Parliament, Urban Development Minister Phil Twyford said. “The Urban Development Bill gives Kāinga Ora-Homes and Communities the tools it needs to partner with councils, communities, mana whenua and private developers to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Early Learning Action Plan to kickstart long term change
    Today’s launch of He taonga te Tamaiti: Every child a taonga: The Early Learning Action Plan 2019-2029 provides the foundation for long-lasting changes to early learning, Education Minister Chris Hipkins says.   “Early learning will be one of the Government’s top education priorities going into 2020,” Chris Hipkins said.   ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Climate change lens on major Government decisions
    Major decisions made by the Government will now be considered under a climate change lens, Minister for Climate Change James Shaw announced today. “Cabinet routinely considers the effects of its decisions on human rights, the Treaty of Waitangi, rural communities, the disability community, and gender – now climate change will ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • New Tertiary Education Commission Board announced
    Education Minister Chris Hipkins today announced the appointment of Māori education specialist Dr Wayne Ngata and Business NZ head Kirk Hope to the Board of the Tertiary Education Commission (TEC). Dr Alastair MacCormick has been reappointed for another term. “Wayne Ngata, Kirk Hope and Alastair MacCormick bring a great deal ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Next phase of Pike River recovery underway in time for Christmas
    The next phase of the Pike River Re-entry project is underway, Minister Responsible for Pike River Re-entry Andrew Little says. “Fresh air will be pumped into the Pike River Mine drift this week, following acceptance of the plan for re-entry beyond the 170m barrier by New Zealand’s independent health and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Insurance contracts to become easier to understand and fairer for consumers
    New Zealand consumers will have greater certainty about their insurance cover when they need to make claims as a result of proposed government changes. “Insurance is vitally important in supporting consumers and businesses to be financially resilient when unexpected events happen,” Minister of Commerce and Consumer Affairs Kris Faafoi said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • A new opportunity for Ngāpuhi collective and regional negotiations
    The Crown is providing an opportunity for the hapu of Ngāpuhi to rebuild its framework from the ground up for collective negotiations to deal with its historical Treaty claims, Minister for Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations Andrew Little and Minister for Māori Development Nanaia Mahuta announced today. The Crown is also ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Referendums Framework Bill passes third reading
    A Bill enabling referendums to be held with the 2020 General Election has passed its third reading. Justice Minister Andrew Little says the Act is important for upholding the integrity of New Zealand’s electoral process. “The Government has committed to holding a referendum on legalising recreational cannabis at the next ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Referendums website and initial cannabis Bill launched
    The first release of public information on the two referendums to be held at next year’s General Election was made today with an informative new Government website going live. Additionally, the draft Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill has been released, showing the strict controls on cannabis that will apply if ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government to ban foreign donations
    The Government is taking action to protect New Zealand from foreign interference in our elections by banning foreign donations to political parties and candidates, Justice Minister Andrew Little announced today. Legislation will be introduced to Parliament this afternoon and passed under urgency. “There’s no need for anyone other than New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Governments and tech converge to strengthen joint response to online terror events
    Governments and tech companies are holding a two-day workshop, hosted by YouTube/Google in Wellington, to test the Christchurch Call Shared Crisis Response Protocol. The workshop aims to refine and strengthen the response in the event of a terrorist attack with online implications. Companies, governments, civil society experts and NGOs will ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago