Open Mike 24/06/2017

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, June 24th, 2017 - 87 comments
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87 comments on “Open Mike 24/06/2017”

  1. Ad 1

    Looks like the Auckland housing price boom is really over.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11881164

    Naturally, this doesn’t cure homelessness. There’s still a big place for Labour’s excellent housing policies

    But if you ever want to see policy working to tilt a whole market, look no further than the measures that this National government put in place.

    It was only in October last year that tighter Loan to Value Ratio restrictions were put in place. It required property investors to have a 40% deposit for a mortgage loan and owner-occupiers to have a 20% deposit. Immediately the froth came off, but now its effect is really showing.

    Who knows, we could still have a housing price collapse.

    Or we could have the modern miracle of government, over the one great asset the majority of New Zealanders have: their home. And that miracle is managing the entire real estate market down.

    • Carolyn_nth 1.1

      What are you on? The article says the biggest casualty is first home buyers are the main ones being shut out of the housing market. Meanwhile, the biggest winners are investors with cash.

      • marty mars 1.1.1

        + 1

        Ad will be okay so no problem.

      • Ad 1.1.2

        Here it is.
        Housing has to stop being our preferred asset class. It’s going to hurt.

        First home buyers will almost always need to draw on their parents’ equity.

        Every currently home-owning family will be forced to think like they are a bank with specific limited equity to carefully dole out.

        • weka 1.1.2.1

          Or, put rules in place to stop speculating on property as a way of making an income.

          • Ad 1.1.2.1.1

            The 10 year boom has created a set of highly leveraged large landlords. Very few are cashed up. Very few banks are lending.

            The 2 year Bright Line test is doing it’s job limiting speculators.

            The new rules are not enough, but they are heading us in the right direction without a crash.

            • weka 1.1.2.1.1.1

              From the view from halfway to the bottom end, what you are talking about looks like tinkering to make the market better for the top end, mostly as investment. And ultimately that will continue to hurt renters, the homeless and those on lowish incomes who might want to buy. There are whole classes of people now who can’t own and struggle to afford rent and I don’t see what you are talking about as improving that much (although I’m sure it is better than nothing).

              The problem is seeing housing as a financial investment, and that’s a tricky one to unpack because it’s tied to retirement and the contemporary idea that the state can no longer bet trusted to support people. Better to fix welfare/social security IMO, and then reinstate housing as being about having a home instead of a financial investment.

              • Carolyn_nth

                Yep. It’s treating housing a social investment that’s a problem – plus the decline of our welfare system, low wages and focusing generally on profits over people.

  2. The Chairman 2

    Do Labour plan to make the TPP an election issue?
    Little has been said.

    • saveNZ 2.1

      Good point, of course Labour should. It’s one of the main differences that people can say in one sentence and TPPA is very unpopular.

      • The Chairman 2.1.1

        “TPPA is very unpopular”

        One would expect Labour to capitalize off that, yet there’s little being said.

        • Draco T Bastard 2.1.1.1

          Considering that Labour, in it’s fanatical following of the neo-liberal cult, is actually in agreement with the TPPA and FTAs in general then, no, you shouldn’t expect them to make capital off of it.

          • The Chairman 2.1.1.1.1

            That explains the silence. But it will probably cost them a few votes though.

            The Nats are pushing it through, hence a number will vote accordingly to oppose it.

          • Karen 2.1.1.1.2

            They have been clear about opposition to the TPPA many times, including on Morning Report a couple of weeks ago. Not that it matters as the TPPA is dead.

            • Draco T Bastard 2.1.1.1.2.1

              Link?

              I’ve never seen them being clear about it and that is usually bound up with their general belief that FTAs are good no matter what.

              • patricia bremner

                I put in NZ Labour TPPA and got the NO and the petition.
                Trade OK. The loss of sovereignty rules it out. No changes as far as I can see.

            • saveNZ 2.1.1.1.2.2

              Nope TPPA isn’t dead. Bill English was out trying to drum up the zombie agreement with anybody left who will listen.

              If Natz get in again, and with Trump going to sign ‘if USA get a good deal”. Well we all know that Natz would sign anything no matter how damaging to the people of NZ. What do they care what’s in the details, whether arduous health costs or turning our cops into copywrite cops for US business – who the frig knows what the National party are prepared to sign with Trump or anyone else, anything.

  3. The Chairman 3

    National will be doing the numbers. Will English remaining do more damage than English standing down?

    • Barfly 3.1

      Both are likely to be fatal.

      • saveNZ 3.1.1

        Lets hope.

        Not a lot of talk about how hopeless the National Party look, post Key. Zero succession planning in the National Party. My guess is trader Key, read the future, realised the shit was going to hit the fan with our economy 98 million dollars into the red and bailed so he could look good and escape to Hawaii with full benefits and pensions and brag to his mates how he was NZ’s most popular PM.

        Of course Tony Blair used to be popular and look what happened to him and the UK Labour party after he left.

        Now it’s the right’s turn.

        We have Bitter Bill, the world’s biggest bores.
        Ex Bene turned Bene basher with a wonderful CV of receiving government money her whole life and now as deputy leader.
        Judith Colins with so many scandals and dirt to be dug up she could make mince meat out of the National party rep.
        Joyce, the world’s most arrogant yokel, who can even annoy the most eager National business person with his ‘pretty legal’ chit chat
        Brownlee, the CHCH rebuild architect – “wizard’.
        Smith, who unlike Jesus can turn fish into faeces.

        • The Chairman 3.1.1.1

          An ex Merrill Lyncher is the likely outcome of Barclay standing down, but yes, who would replace English?

    • patricia bremner 3.2

      Bill marched away from an interview looking relaxed and pleased.
      His statement “if there was a tape” is a worry. Does he know it is long gone,
      and now evidence is hear-say?
      Though he still has to explain his texts and Glenys’s call to the victim, after his call to her on Waitangi Day. (interview with Gower),
      Bouyed by the “late” poll results as well? (late = 2 weeks old)
      Bennett declaring a political crush on English, tells me there is division, and she has chosen. No real surprise in that. So Bill has to get the numbers.

      WE have to act on faith, and give our honest guy Andrew support.
      We need to speak up and sell our honest group.
      Bury all hair shirts ’till the election is over!!
      We have enough horrible foes without ‘white anting’ the party.
      We need to get them in, then apply the pressure to enact people friendly legislation.
      We are closer than they care to admit, that is why they are shrill and in attack mode.
      Don’t give them fodder.
      We need to join together and push this over the line.
      Please enrol and vote 2 ticks.

    • James 3.3

      Nats 49% – labour 25% and you think it’s nats doing the numbers – you’re delusional.

      • The Chairman 3.3.1

        Stable Government with English being sold as a trusted, stable pair of hands is the line National are pushing.

        English standing down would destroy that perception. But now that his credibility has come into question, there could also be damage if he remains party leader.

        Therefore, it’s delusional to think they wouldn’t be evaluating the numbers.

        Moreover, you’ve seem to have forgotten this is an MMP election, therefore Labour aren’t standing alone. And when combined with the Greens (& possibly NZF) it’s going to be a close finish.

      • Ed 3.3.2

        Do you care about New Zealand’s children?
        We are 1st for rugby, but 34th for children in the OECD.
        Which do you care about more ?

  4. Ant 4

    CREATIVE FUTURE?
    It is no coincidence that world-wide rehabilitation programs for offenders and addicts are invariably grounded in creativity: cooking, music, art, surfing, environmental restoration. Spontaneous creativity is neither a luxury nor a talent, but the natural expression of all of us, setting us aside from other life forms on earth.

    By re-aligning our waking hours with that which is creative in ourselves rather than squeezing it in over weekends we will defuse restlessness, the futility of non-fulfilment and the sense that our abilities are going to waste. With widespread automation, decimation of jobs and UBI in place vast reserves of creativity could be put to work restoring society, the environment, the social structure and all that runs counter to a happy and productive country.

    Creativity has many faces; the politically inclined will generate fresh ways of inclusive government; educators new methods of drawing out the creativity of their charges; financiers equitable ways of restructuring currency (or what’s left of it); artists and musicians novel expression of humanity’s changing orientation on earth; scientists sustainable methods of restoring the integrity of our ecosystems; idealists insights into our future course; philosophers insightful ways to growth and understanding of the evolving human spirit, to name a few.

    For those who have tried it the satisfaction of working creatively in cooperative ventures eclipses the need to “prove oneself” via competition. Whether the race is ready to move beyond this most basic of drivers is difficult to say.

    • TootingPopularFront 4.1

      Very uplifting, thanks Ant, there is much to reflect on in your post.

    • Draco T Bastard 4.2

      For those who have tried it the satisfaction of working creatively in cooperative ventures eclipses the need to “prove oneself” via competition. Whether the race is ready to move beyond this most basic of drivers is difficult to say.

      We evolved beyond it millions of years ago. If there’s anything to the human nature argument that the RWNJs bring up all the time it’s that we’re mostly altruistic and cooperative. It’s the sociopaths that aren’t and they’re the minority.

      • Ant 4.2.1

        Your’e saying humans are no longer competitive? Free market system, capitalism, one-upmanship, rampant materialism, – all driven by competition when I last looked.

        • Draco T Bastard 4.2.1.1

          Yep but that doesn’t mean that the majority of people are that way inclined. It just means that the ones with power are.

          • Ant 4.2.1.1.1

            If the majority were not that way inclined the fashion, cosmetic, designer clothing, and a host of other industries would have collapsed long ago.

            • Draco T Bastard 4.2.1.1.1.1

              No. It’s a question of training via environment. Change the environment and change the people.

        • Stuart Munro 4.2.1.2

          Our markets are not notably free – everything in NZ costs more except wages. The Rogergnomic reforms failed – but then they were never intended to work, only to enrich a small subset of the population.

    • patricia bremner 4.3

      Yes Beeby had it right in the 60s school syllabus.

      • Ant 4.3.1

        True. Talent and creativity can only flourish through honouring the individual’s uniqueness in terms of background, era and culture. Mass delivered education in crowded classrooms can never deliver. National trots out the worn mantra “research has shown that class size does not make a difference to educational achievement.”; of course they are talking about grades but remain shy of asking why depression, suicide, substance abuse etc. remain depressingly high.

    • Incognito 4.4

      Thank you!

      Only through being creative can we realise who we are.

      It’s both an inward and outward journey with no set destination and no initial boundaries or fear.

  5. Cinny 5

    Will the PM who quit aka Key be making an appearance at the Nat’s conference this weekend? Will he be standing up and backing English, defending the outgoing PM’s lying etc?

    Where is Key? If he was a good friend of Bills surely he would be helping him out of the massive Barclay scandal which is still making news.

  6. The Chairman 6

    Hone on the Nation – wow! He’ll keep the headline writers busy.

    • BM 6.1

      Pretty scathing of Andrew Little.

      Wish they’d get rid of Lisa Owen though, Jesus, shut the fuck up and let your guests speak. don’t ask a question and talk over them when they’re trying to reply to the question you asked.

      Definitely one of the worst interviewers on TV.

      • The Chairman 6.1.1

        “Pretty scathing of Andrew Little.”

        Indeed. He accused Little of lying and treating Labour’s Maori MPs like “shit”.

        • marty mars 6.1.1.1

          I think Hone should stay out of politics and go back to activism. i don’t think he gets it. Nothing worse than seeing someone who doesn’t know when it’s over.

          • The Chairman 6.1.1.1.1

            It’s clear he’s going to let voters decide that one (whether it’s over).

            • marty mars 6.1.1.1.1.1

              They already have.

              • The Chairman

                Your talking last election. Things are different now, hence I was referring to this election.

                • Yeah i know. They are different not in a beneficial way imo.

                  • The Chairman

                    Going off the interview, can’t see his deal with the Māori Party going too well.

                    They agreed not to stand against each other in electoral seats. The expectation being that doing so would encourage supporters of both to support the one standing. However, Hone won’t give his backing of his members doing so due to the Māori Party’s support of the Māori land reform Bill.

                    And apparently Marama Fox has threaten to respond in kind.

                    • I know. Got a Facebook petition – save the Māori land court – from the mana party. Someone wrote a comment about the deal with the Māori Party – just a joke imo.

          • Karen 6.1.1.1.2

            Me too Marty. I like Hone but I don’t think he is doing himself (or Mana) any favours at the moment. I think he can be more effective as an activist than as a lone backbencher.

            This is more worrying though – he evidently suggested life imprisonment or deportation to China for the death penalty to discourage meth dealing on the Nation. I really wouldn’t have expected that from him

  7. Morrissey 7

    Anyone interested in learning something about the ongoing siege of Gaza should read this book…

    Gaza: An Inquest into Its Martyrdom
    by NORMAN FINKELSTEIN

    Gaza is among the most densely populated places in the world. Two-thirds of its inhabitants are refugees, and more than half the population is under eighteen years of age. Since Israel occupied Gaza in 1967, it has systematically de-developed the economy. After Hamas won democratic elections in 2006, Israel intensified its blockade of Gaza, and after Hamas consolidated its control of the territory in 2007, Israel tightened its illegal siege another notch. In the meantime, Israel has launched no less than eight military operations against Gaza—culminating in Operation Cast Lead in 2008–9 and Operation Protective Edge in 2014—that left behind over three million tons of rubble. Recent UN reports predict that Gaza will be unlivable by 2020.

    Norman G. Finkelstein presents a meticulously researched and devastating inquest into Israel’s actions of the last decade. He argues that although Israel justified its blockade and violent assaults in the name of self-defense, in fact these actions were cynical exercises of brutal power against an essentially defenseless civilian population. Based on hundreds of human rights reports, the book scrutinizes multifarious violations of international law Israel committed both during its operations and in the course of its decade-long siege of Gaza. It is a monument to Gaza’s martyrs and a scorching accusation against their tormenters.

    http://normanfinkelstein.com/book/gaza-an-inquest-into-its-martyrdom-3/

  8. North 8

    http://normanfinkelstein.com/book/gaza-an-inquest-into-its-martyrdom-3/

    Thanks Morrissey Not available from Amazon until Jan ’18 apparently Daresay it will be definitive As remains this –

    Here’s some punctuation –

    • North 8.1

      Women crying…….not truly for the victims……..more for themselves and their busted ‘Zionist Exceptionalism’

  9. Morrissey 9

    Reasons to be Cheerful
    No. 1 Jeremy Corbyn

    The British prime minister-in-waiting has been confronting pure evil for a long time now….

  10. rhinocrates 10

    Well fuck you too Labour:

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/farming/93965507/labour-abandons-water-and-nutrient-charging-policy-for-farming

    The most charitable or delusional interpretation I can make is that Labour is outsourcing its environmental policy to the Greens and will ‘concede’ clean river as part of a deal later, but remember how Blair was supposed to be cultivating the Conservative voters before he was going to implement real socialist policies? Right, we all know how that turned out.

    It looks like Little is just Captain Mumblefuck 2.0

    • weka 10.1

      Adelia Hallett‏ @AdeliaHallett 5h5 hours ago

      Labour hasn’t ruled out pricing water at all David Parker tells F&B conference #ConservationHeroes

      I don’t know what they’re doing. I’d like to see their whole policies because that article doesn’t really say a lot.

      One delegate sought an assurance from Little that the Green Party would not “can” Labour’s attitude to how it would operate as a government.

      “We [and the Greens] have common areas of policy but also areas we differ on as well. The more support you give us, the more we can approach your industry in a practical and sensible way,” Little responded.

      Lol, that’s my argument to people to vote Green. If we want a progressive govt the more Greens the better. Little is speaking to that audience but it does make me think they’ve chosen messaging over authenticity.

      • rhinocrates 10.1.1

        they’ve chosen messaging over authenticity.

        If we want a progressive govt the more Greens the better. Little is speaking to that audience but it does make me think they’ve chosen messaging over authenticity.

        Absolutely. They only succeed in coming across as insincere and confused.

        I’m voting Green. Very Little can go fuck himself.

        It’s very easy to see why people are sick of business as usual politics when the system keeps excreting nobodies like Blinglish and Little.

        • weka 10.1.1.1

          I think our best bet is to have a L/G govt without Peters. This will give the Greens a chance to prove themselves once and for all. They’re obviously competent to be in govt, but it will be crunch time as to whether they can do govt differently and keep left.

          • rhinocrates 10.1.1.1.1

            In the absence of any unicorns, I agree. The Greens are showing both integrity and discipline and deserve to have a hand in government. Labour is riddled with egotistical careerists such as Robertson who put themselves first, party second and principles third. Little is totally ineffective in keeping them in check and shows no competence or principles. He is not a PM in waiting, which is the test of any opposition. His only advantage is that Blinglish is not a PM at all.

      • Karen 10.1.2

        Hmmm. I was really alarmed about the report about what Little said, but today there was a press release from him, plus just heard David Parker on midday news on Nat radio saying that policy from 2014 hasn’t changed. Little claims he misunderstood the question and his lack of response to another statement was seen as agreement when it wasn’t.

        http://www.labour.org.nz/labour_will_not_resile_from_royalties

        I agree that the Greens are stronger that Labour on environmental policy so making sure they have a significant influence in a Labour/Green government is important.

        • weka 10.1.2.1

          Thanks Karen, I’ll put that up as a post in the morning. I thought the original Stuff article was poor and probably misleading so good to have some more information.

          One of Labour’s problems is the lag time between their speeches and media work and putting things up on their website. I’m still waiting for something on mental health after their good work in Chch last week. If they’re just going to rely on the media coverage then mistakes like this one over water will happen.

          • Karen 10.1.2.1.1

            Labour don’t seem to have a good comms team at all and I find it really frustrating. I know they have quite a lot on at the moment but this water policy confusion should have dealt with as soon as the article appeared, not 2 days later.

            If there is a policy announcement the policy page on the website should be updated immediately afterwards and there should be 2 versions, one with a lot more detail (for policy nerds like me!) They did that for the immigration one but it isn’t consistent.

            • weka 10.1.2.1.1.1

              On you on any of their mailing lists? do you get emailed policy summaries or such? Just wondering if I should subscribe.

              • Karen

                I am on the mailing list for the Greens and Labour but Labour tend to just send major speeches rather than individual policy announcements. Mostly, I just look at the new policies page:

                http://www.labour.org.nz/announced_policies

                Hopefully this will be a bit more informative closer to the election as most of the policies don’t have enough detail for my liking. This may be because they are still formulating some of it.

                I also look at their press release page as I prefer to get the info direct rather than filtered by the MSM.
                http://www.labour.org.nz/press_releases

    • millsy 10.2

      Federated Farmers are NZ’s version of the NRA.

      To be honest I dont think farmers want clean rivers/waterways, for the simple reason that it impacts on their profits. “Local based solutions” are all PR bullshit.

      It would be better and more honest for FF to have the guts to stand up and just say, “we dont want clean rivers, because we just want to make a shit load of money instead, and also, we want to shut New Zealander out of the farming industry and have farm workers all migrants”.

      /

  11. Tautoko Mangō Mata 11

    The 2017 FIZZ Conference
    “Taxing Sugary Drinks: An Election Issue” will be held on Monday 26 June.

    Meanwhile, I note the following Official Information request languishing on FYI”

    Document containing advice re Sugar Tax from MOH tabled during question time 13.10.2016
    Request sent to Minister of Health by John Gray on October 13, 2016.
    Long overdue.

    Hansard details:
    Hon Dr JONATHAN COLEMAN: I seek leave to table advice to me from the Ministry of Health saying that there is no conclusive evidence that a sugar tax will decrease obesity rates
    https://www.parliament.nz/en/pb/hansard-debates/rhr/combined/HansDeb_20161013_20161013_16

    It is nearly 8 months since the OIA request……….

    The Prime Minister’s Chief Science Advisor give his view- “don’t rule out sugar tax” on video. https://www.sciencemediacentre.co.nz/2015/07/30/pms-chief-science-advisor-on-sugar-obesity-and-taxes/

  12. Ad 12

    30-8 to the All Blacks.

    Is it too early to suggest that an All Blacks series win against the Lions and an America’s Cup victory would be – al least national mood wise – be pretty good for this government in September?

    • Ed 12.1

      Great – we’re first at rugby and sailing and 34th in the OECD for looking after children.
      If we vote for this, we are contemptible.

      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11874764

      • Red 12.1.1

        The peop,e are never wrong Paul or ed or what ever you call yourself these days so be ready to be disapointed

        • Incognito 12.1.1.1

          That’s just a cliché, not an argument.

          We are misguided, misinformed, disinformed, manipulated, conditioned, and most of all resistant to change and apathetic. You were saying?

    • James 12.2

      I couldn’t see the game where I am overseas – but looks like we played well.

      And agree – between this and if we get the Americas cup – it will pit a lot of people in a good mood. Add that the the majority of people thinking the country is heading in the right direction it’s a good position for national.

  13. lprent 13

    Outages today were due to googlebots having an issue with an old post from 2011 which had links starting with // and/or ending with ‘. They have read this post hundreds of times before. Looks like something got tweaked.

    Caused some interesting effects with some strange URLs. tens of thousands of queries per minute, high CPU, and the processor shutting down when it hit safety tempatures.

    I have fixed the page, removed the googlebot special access and I’ve started treating it like bingbot…

  14. Ovid 14

    Fascinating interview with Frankie Boyle on British politics

  15. Red 15

    Frankie has had to many pies

    • rhinocrates 15.1

      Gosh, that’s astute. That really shoots down his points doesn’t it? Also, it’s ‘TOO many’.

      Try not to look like such an idiot in future.

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    4 days ago
  • Why PPPs are a bad idea
    When National was in power, they were very keen on Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) - basicly, using private companies to finance public infrastructure as a way of hiding debt from the public. They were keen on using them for everything - roads, schools, hospitals. But as the UK shows, that "service" ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • A Movement That No Longer Moves.
    Moving And Shaking: There was a time when people spoke matter-of-factly about the “labour movement” – a political phenomenon understood to embrace much more than the Labour Party. Included within the term’s definition was the whole trade union movement – many of whose members looked upon the Labour Party as ...
    4 days ago
  • NZ ‘left’ politically embracing extreme postmodernism
    by Philip Ferguson Much of the left, even people who formally identify as marxists, have collapsed politically in the face of postmodern gender theory of the sort pioneered by American philosopher Judith Butler. For Butler even biological sex is socially constructed. “If the immutable character of sex is contested, perhaps ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    4 days ago
  • The obvious question
    The media is reporting that the (alleged) Labour party sexual assaulter has resigned from their job at Parliament, which means hopefully he won't be turning up there making people feel unsafe in future. Good. But as with everything about this scandal, it just raises other questions. Most significantly: why the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • The moment I found out that you found out, I acted swiftly
    By Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern I am every bit as angry as you are. I am every bit as disappointed as you must be. The people with power, oversight and the ability to do something about these processes within the Labour Party should be ashamed. Whoever those people are, I ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    5 days ago
  • This is why people hate property developers
    Property developers think there is an "oversupply" of houses in Auckland:High turnover rates and falling prices may be a sign that there are too many new houses going in to some parts of Auckland, commentators say. [...] Property developer David Whitburn said there was a "bit of an oversupply" in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Australia to Pacific: “Fuck you, you can all drown”
    World leaders are meeting in New York in two weeks for the 2019 Climate Action Summit, where they are expected to announce new and more ambitious targets to stop the world from burning. But the Australian Prime Minister won't be there, despite being in the USA at the time:Scott Morrison ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Implausible ignorance
    Labour Party president Nigel Haworth resigned yesterday over the party's sexual assault scandal. But while that's good news, its unlikely to take away the stench of a coverup. Because according to Paula Bennett in Parliament yesterday, pretty much everyone in the Prime Minister's office was involved as well:I have been ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Labour’s Fatal Flaw.
     Two-Faced? Labour insiders' commitment to the neoliberal status quo puts them at odds with their party’s membership; its trade union affiliates; and a majority of Labour voters, but this only serves to strengthen the perception they have of themselves as a special elite. Among the lesser breeds, they’ll talk up a ...
    5 days ago
  • Ten reasons the Tories do NOT want an election
    There has been a lot of talk about Boris Johnson wanting an election, and he has blustered with great gusto about 'chicken' Jeremy Corbyn refusing one, but I think there are many reasons why he is secretly glad he has been refused the opportunity:The Tories are an utter rabble,tearing themselves ...
    5 days ago
  • Prorogation Illegal, rule Scottish judges
    Scottish appeal court judges have declared that Boris Johnson’s decision to suspend parliament in the run-up to the October Brexit deadline is unlawful. The three judges, chaired by Lord Carloway, Scotland’s most senior judge, overturned an earlier ruling that the courts did not have the powers to interfere in the prime ...
    5 days ago
  • Let me explain what I meant by Everyday New Zealanders
    By Simon Bridges. The following is a press release from the office of Simon Bridges, leader of The National Party. Key ora, New Zealand. Happy Maori Language Week. Look, I’m writing to you today because I want to clear something up. There’s been a lot of kerfuffle around some things ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    6 days ago
  • Yes, the SIS is subject to the Public Records Act
    I understand there's some stuff going round about how the SIS "was removed from the list of public offices covered by the Public Records Act in 2017". The context of course being their records derived from US torture, which will be disposed of or sealed. The good news is that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • An evidence-based discussion of the Canadian fluoride/IQ study
    Dr. Christopher Labos and Jonathan Jarry discuss the recent Canadian fluoride/IQ research. They provide an expert analysis of the paper and its problems. Click on image to go to podcast. The critical debate about the recent ...
    6 days ago
  • Climate Change: Australia in denial
    Australia is burning down again, and meanwhile its natural disaster minister is denying climate change:Australia’s minister responsible for drought and natural disasters, David Littleproud, has said that he doesn’t “know if climate change is manmade”. Clarifying earlier comments that the question is “irrelevant” when considering the Coalition government’s response to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Philippines activist speaking on the Duterte tyranny
    Auckland Philippines Solidarity is excited to host Professor Judy Taguiwalo for a speaking tour of NZ in September. She is a well-known activist in the Philippines and was a political prisoner under the Marcos dictatorship. Professor Taguiwalo briefly served as a Cabinet member under President Duterte but was forced from ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • Disgust
    I have no special insights to offer on the Labour sexual assault coverup. All I have is disgust. Disgust that an organisation could fail its people so badly. Disgust that they punished the victims rather than the perpetrator. Disgust that its party hacks are apparently blaming the victims for demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Speak Up for Women calls out Greens’ censorship
    This open letter to the Green Party was penned after an opinion piece by Jill Abigail, a feminist and founding member of the party, was censored by the Greens’ leadership. (Redline has reprinted her article here).The intolerance of the Green Party leaders and their acceptance of the misogyny of gender ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • Member’s Day: End of Life Choice, part 3
    Today is a Member's day, and David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill continues its slow crawl through its committee stage. They're spending the whole day on it today, though the first hour is likely to be spent on voting left over from last time. After that they'll move on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Flight to Los Angeles turned back after passengers decide they don’t want to go anymore
    An ambitious plan to fly to Los Angeles petered out into a brief sight-seeing trip and a desire to return home and get some sleep before work tomorrow. Air New Zealand has confirmed a flight to Los Angeles last night was turned back about a quarter of the way into ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    6 days ago
  • Indigenous Futures: defuturing and futuring – an analytical framework for policy development?
    There appears to be consensus – by omission – that the concept of indigenous futures should be accepted at face value. So I scavenged the internet to see if I could locate an academic descriptor or a framework around how we think about it as a concept, and whether it ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    7 days ago
  • Cadbury rumoured to be releasing the Pineapple Trump
    Here’s another novelty chocolate to shove in your gob, New Zealand Cadbury could be seeking to make itself great again with a rumoured new release: Pineapple Trumps, a spin on its classic chocolate-encased pineapple treat and do-it-yourself tooth remover. The global confectionery manufacturer and bumbling “before” character in an infomercial, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    7 days ago
  • The coming resource war.
    During my time in the Pentagon I had the privilege of sitting down with military leaders and defence and security officials from a variety of Latin American nations. Sometimes I was present as a subordinate assistant to a senior US defence department official, sometimes as part of a delegation that ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    7 days ago
  • Māori Language Week with The Civilian
    Kia ora, Aotearoa. It’s that magical time of year. Te Wiki o te Reo Māori. In English, the week that frightens talk radio. As you probably know by now, all your favourite media outlets are participating, some more successfully than others. Stuff has changed its name to Puna for the ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    7 days ago
  • Will Horizons act on climate change?
    Local body elections are coming up next month. And it looks like all Palmerston North candidates for Horizons (the Manawatu-Whanganui Regional Council) want to take action on climate change:Climate change is set to be a key issue in Palmerston North for the next three years if those wanting to get ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • BORA reform is stalled
    Eighteen months ago, the government promised to strengthen the Bill of Rights Act, by explicitly affirming the power of the courts to issue declarations of inconsistency and requiring Parliament to formally respond to them. So how's that going? I was curious, so I asked for all advice about the proposal. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Corbyn and Brexit
    As the Brexit saga staggers on, the focus is naturally enough on the Prime Minister and his attempts to achieve Brexit “do or die”. But the role played by the Leader of the Opposition is of almost equal interest and complexity. The first problem for Jeremy Corbyn is that he ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    7 days ago
  • A ditch for him to die in
    Last week, English Prime Minister Boris Johnson boldly declared that he would rather die be dead in a ditch than delay Brexit. Unfortunately for him, the UK parliament accepted the challenge, and promptly dug one for him. The "rebellion bill" requires him to ask for and secure yet another temporary ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Warning! Warning! Danger Jacinda Ardern! Danger Marama Davidson! Warning!
    Lost In Political Space: The most important takeaway from this latest Labour sexual assault scandal, which (if I may paraphrase Nixon’s White House counsel’s, John Dean’s, infamous description of Watergate) is “growing like a cancer” on the premiership, is the Labour Party organisation’s extraordinary professional paralysis in the face of ...
    1 week ago
  • Union solidarity with Ihumatao land occupation
    by Daphna Whitmore Every Sunday for the past two months unionists from First Union, with supporters from other unions, have set out to the Ihumatao land protest, put up gazebos and gas barbeques, and cooked food for a few hundred locals and supporters who have come from across the country. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: The wrong kind of trees?
    Newsroom today has an excellent, in-depth article on pine trees as carbon sinks. The TL;DR is that pine is really good at soaking up carbon, but people prefer far-less efficient native forests instead. Which is understandable, but there's two problems: firstly, we've pissed about so long on this problem that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • No freedom of speech in Turkey
    Canan Kaftancioglu is a Turkish politician and member of the opposition Republican People's Party (CHP). Like most modern politicians, she tweets, and uses the platform to criticise the Turkish government. She has criticised them over the death of a 14-year-old boy who was hit by a tear gas grenade during ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Speaker: Tadhg Stopford: Why I’m standing for the ADHB
    Hi there, just call me Tim.We face tough problems, and I’d like to help, because there are solutions.An Auckand District Health Board member has nominated me for as a candidate for the ADHB, because her MS-related pain and fatigue is reduced with hemp products from Rotorua.  Nothing else helped her. If I ...
    1 week ago
  • Good little vassals
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security has published their report on whether the SIS and GCSB had any complicity in American torture. And its damning. The pull quote is this:The Inquiry found both agencies, but to a much greater degree, the NZSIS, received many intelligence reports obtained from detainees who, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Who Shall We Turn To When God, And Uncle Sam, Cease To Defend New Zealand?
    Bewhiskered Cassandra? Professor Hugh White’s chilling suggestion, advanced to select collections of academic, military and diplomatic Kiwi experts over the course of the past week, is that the assumptions upon which Australia and New Zealand have built their foreign affairs and defence policies for practically their entire histories – are ...
    1 week ago
  • The Politics of Opposition
    For most of the time I was a British MP, my party was out of government – these were the Thatcher years, when it was hard for anyone else to get a look-in. As a front-bencher and shadow minister, I became familiar with the strategies required in a parliamentary democracy ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • More expert comments on the Canadian fluoride-IQ paper
    The Green et al (2019) fluoride/IQ is certainly controversial – as would be expected from its subject (see If at first you don’t succeed . . . statistical manipulation might help and Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear). Anti-fluoride campaigners have been actively promoting it ...
    1 week ago
  • The return to guerrilla war in Colombia
    by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh On August 29th a video in which veteran FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) commander Iván Márquez announced that they had taken up arms again was released. There was no delay in the reaction to it, from longtime Liberal Party figure and former president Uribe, for ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Air New Zealand identifies this enormous plot of unused land as possible second airport site
    Air New Zealand couldn’t believe its luck that this seemingly ideal piece of real estate had so far gone entirely unnoticed. Air New Zealand’s search for a site to build a second Auckland Airport may have made a breakthrough this afternoon, after employees scanning Google satellite imagery spotted a huge, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Redline on the Labour Party
    No-one on the anti-capitalist left in this country today puts forward a case that Labour is on the side of the working class.  There are certainly people who call themselves ‘socialist’ who do, but they are essentially liberals with vested interests in Labourism – often for career reasons. Nevertheless, there ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • New Fisk
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour’s failure
    When National was in government and fucking over the poor for the benefit of the rich, foodbanks were a growth industry. And now Labour is in charge, nothing has changed: A huge demand for emergency food parcels means the Auckland City Mission is struggling to prepare for the impending arrival ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Ardern attempts to vaccinate Clarke Gayford live on television to prove that it’s safe
    Gayford, pictured here on The Project, before things got wildly out of control. A bold public relations move by the Government to encourage parents to vaccinate their children has gone horribly wrong. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern appeared on tonight’s episode of Three’s The Project, where the plan was for her ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Has Mr. Whippy gone too far by parking on our front lawns?
    Mr. Whippy’s business model has driven it down a dark road of intimidation. Residents in major centres around the country are becoming disgruntled by the increasingly aggressive actions of purported ice cream company Mr. Whippy, who have taken to parking on people’s front lawns and doorsteps in a desperate attempt ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Cleaning up the water
    Today the government released its Action Plan for Healthy Waterways, aimed at cleaning up our lakes and rivers. Its actually quite good. There will be protection for wetlands, better standards for swimming spots, a requirement for continuous improvement, and better standards for wastewater and stormwater. But most importantly, there's a ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Fronting up
    Today I appeared before the Environment Committee to give an oral submission on the Zero Carbon Bill. Over 1,500 people have asked to appear in person, so they've divided into subcommittees and are off touring the country, giving people a five minute slot each. The other submitters were a mixed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear
    Anti-fluoride activists have some wealthy backers – they are erecting billboards misrepresenting the Canadian study on many New Zealand cities – and local authorities are ordering their removal because of their scaremongering. Many New Zealanders ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Democracy – I Don’t Think So
    So, those who “know best” have again done their worst. While constantly claiming to be the guardians of democracy and the constitution, and respecters of the 2016 referendum result, diehard Remainers (who have never brought themselves to believe that their advice could have been rejected) have striven might and main ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • Government says it will now build just one really nice home
    Following publication of this article, the Ministry has requested it to be noted that this supplied image is not necessarily representative of what the final house will look like, and it “probably won’t be that nice.” As part of today’s long-anticipated reset of the Government’s flagship KiwiBuild policy, Housing Minister ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Imperialism and your cup of coffee
    Over the next week or two we will be running three synopses of parts of the opening chapter of John Smith’s Imperialism in the 21st Century (New York, Monthly Review Press, 2016).  The synopsis and commentary below is written by Phil Duncan. Marx began Capital not with a sweeping historical ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Still juking the stats
    The State Services Commission and Ombudsman have released another batch of OIA statistics, covering the last six months. Request volumes are up, and the core public service is generally handling them within the legal timeframe, though this may be because they've learned to extend rather than just ignore things. And ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Hard News: Time for a New Deal: 25 years on
    In 1994, I was editing an ambitious street mag called Planet, from a fabled office at at 309 Karangahape Road. The thirteenth issue of the magazine was published in the winter of that year and its cover embodied a particularly ambitious goal: the end of cannabis prohibition.I wanted to do ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Not impressed
    KiwiBuild was one of the Ardern government's core policies. The government would end the housing crisis and make housing affordable again by building 100,000 new homes. Of course, it didn't work out like that: targets weren't met, the houses they did build were in the wrong place, and the whole ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Solar beats coal
    As the climate crisis escalates, it is now obvious that we need to radically decarbonise our economy. The good news is that its looking easy and profitable for the energy sector. Wind is already cheaper than fossil fuels, and now solar is too:The levellised cost of solar PV has fallen ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • A Step Too Far.
    A Crown Asset? For reasons relating to its own political convenience, the Crown pretends to believe that “No one owns the water.” To say otherwise would re-vivify the promises contained in the Treaty of Waitangi – most particularly those pertaining to the power of the chiefs and their proprietary rights ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Where Money Comes From
    Most people would say, no doubt, that they have a pretty good idea of what money is. They live with the reality of money every day. It is what is needed to buy the necessities of life and to maintain a decent standard of living. You get money, they would ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • Banned by the Green Party leadership: Jill Abigail on women’s rights and trans rights
    The article below was an opinion piece that appeared in the Spring 2019 issue of Te Awa (the NZ Green Party’s newsletter) and on the Greens website.  In keeping with their policy of hostility to women defending women’s right to female-only spaces, Green bureaucrats have since removed the opinion piece.  ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • The fallacy of the proximity argument.
    Longer term readers may remember my complaining that, as a political scientist, it is burdensome to have non-political scientists wanting to engage me about politics. No layperson would think to approach an astrophysicist and lecture him/her on the finer details of quarks and black holes, but everybody with an opinion ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    2 weeks ago
  • Where We Stood: Chris Trotter Replies To Stevan Eldred-Grigg.
    Joining The Fight: Stevan Eldred-Grigg's argument for New Zealand staying out of the Second World War fails not only on the hard-headed grounds of preserving the country’s strategic and economic interests; and not just on the soft-hearted grounds of duty and loyalty to the nation that had given New Zealand ...
    2 weeks ago

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