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Open Mike 24/11/2016

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, November 24th, 2016 - 126 comments
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Note: Open Mike is now for US politics too.

126 comments on “Open Mike 24/11/2016”

  1. Andre 1

    An interesting argument for the value of staying in the system and changing from within, rather than withdrawing to protest outside.

    https://cleantechnica.com/2016/11/23/within-without-curious-similarities-fossil-fuel-divestment-soviet-union/

    • Ad 1.1

      “They sentenced me to twenty years of boredom
      For trying to change the system from within…”

      The article makes an analogy of anti-fossil fuel activism to the Prague Spring of 1968, but it’s one almighty stretch. It would be very charitable indeed to think that the reason for most Democrat Senators failing to support those protesting against oil pipelines in Dakota right now are doing so because they are seeking to change the system from within.

      • Andre 1.1.1

        Given that most of the protest would be muted by re-routing the pipeline, it seems to me the Dakota pipeline protest is more about indigenous rights getting fucked over yet again, and not so much anti fossil-fuel activism. I agree the lack of support from the Dems is shameful, and I’m very curious about whether it’s due to funding considerations, electoral calculation, or (very low probability) there’s other complexities that aren’t making it into the coverage.

        As far as changing the Dems from within, Bernie gave it a damn good shot and came oh so close. He got far closer to making real change than all the Occupy movements, Steins or Johnsons ever will. But in the end both approaches move things in the right direction, the argument’s about how effective they are.

        But sadly, it seems that maybe the Dem dinosaurs are just too entrenched for real change in the next couple of years.

        http://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2016/11/22/12244416/nancy-pelosi-house-democrats

        • Ad 1.1.1.1

          Helpfully, I have very low expectations of large democratically-led countries like the US being able to make big steps on anything over the medium term. It’s the public-private binary inherent within representative democracy that defines that outside-insider distinction the writer talks about there.

          I am expecting global climate change leadership from now on to come from China.

          • KJT 1.1.1.1.1

            You are confusing corporate oligarchy with Democracy.
            Americas founding fathers had no intention of giving the masses political power.

  2. Rosemary McDonald 2

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/318787/child-abuse-report-'shut-down

    Former Chief Human Rights Commissioner rightfully and righteously kicks up shit about the government’s killing of her report into the abuse of children in state care.
    former Human Rights Commissioner is accusing the government of killing off a critical report on the way it handled hundreds of cases of children abused in state care.

    The report was written when Ros Noonan was Chief Human Rights Commissioner in 2011.

    Chief Human Rights Commissioner David Rutherford said he and a team of lawyers found the report’s conclusions were legally flawed.
    It was never published because, she says, the Attorney General Chris Finlayson did not like its recommendations.

    Many children in state care between the 1950s and 1980s suffered abuse and neglect that scarred them for life.

    In 2009 the UN Committee Against Torture raised concerns about how New Zealand handled historic abuse claims. In 2011 the Human Rights Commission launched a review.

    Ms Noonan said the draft report recommended an independent inquiry be set up. She did not think the Ministry for Social Development was impartial enough to handle victim’s complaints.

    Attorney General Chris Finlayson replied in a letter that he disagreed and the ministry was fair and impartial.”

    AND, Judge Carolyn Henwood, who chaired the Independent Listening and Assistance Service (which folded because the Misery of Social Development pulled it’s funding) wants an independent body that holds MSD to account.

    “”The department is the perpetrator and also the person trying to put it right. Some people are very, very anti the department because of all the harm and the way they’ve been dealt with over the years. So I don’t think it’s satisfactory and it’s still not satisfactory. I think something independent is needed.””

    Respect to these women for raising this issue…

  3. Puckish Rogue 3

    https://nz.news.yahoo.com/top-stories/a/33291733/act-nz-first-condemn-clerics-hate-speech/#page1

    Have Labour or the Greens said anything about this, seems a bit strange if they haven’t I’d have thought

    • Well, you won’t see anything from Labour because they have a lot of Muslim supporters and those supporters are in general agreement with the imam (who’s saying nothing that’s controversial in the umma), and you won’t hear anything from the Greens because he’s not White so can’t be criticised.

      Odd that you don’t mention National – haven’t heard anything from them on this subject either, presumably for the same reason we haven’t heard from Labour.

      • Puckish Rogue 3.1.1

        ACT and NZ First have joined the government in condemning anti-Semitic speeches and online posts by an Auckland Muslim cleric.

        Ethnic Communities Minister Sam Lotu-Iiga said on Monday he was disgusted by the views of Shaykh Dr Mohammad Anwar Sahib.

        “There’s no place in New Zealand for such intolerance, and hate speech is prohibited under the Human Rights Act,” he said.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 3.1.1.1

          …apart from hate speech against Muslims, Mexicans. lower income families, Māori, and women, the National Party stands united against bigotry. Good to know.

          • indiana 3.1.1.1.1

            What part of their condemnations made by the people spoke out against this person and organisation that is considered “hate” speech? Or is anything said that is criticle of Muslims and Islam considered hate speech?

      • inspider 3.1.2

        Be careful what you wish for here.

        His comments may be distasteful to an educated western audience but he is not inciting violence. Similar beliefs pop up from left commentators aimed at israel and Jewish bankers (sometimes on here). Some Christians take a pretty hard line on what should be done to sinners. Gloriavale has an unusual line on the role of women.

        Free speech sometimes means you get people saying some not pleasant things. If we are going to call in the pc police we are going to have to also start patrolling some churches on Sundays.

        Another reason for caution, is this is driven by whaleoil and his friends. Many sentiments similar to this sheik’s are churned out multiple times daily on whaleoil, only aimed at muslims.

        Hate speech seems to increasingly becoming defined as stuff we just don’t like. Do we really want To give Susan Devoy opportunities to frown and wag her finger at the country?

        • Psycho Milt 3.1.2.1

          We have quite a few Acts of Parliament that are incompatible with the Bill of Rights Act. The Human Rights Act is one of them (in that it treats expression of an opinion as an offence), so I’m not keen on it. It would be nice if a government that actually believed in the Bill of Rights Act would repeal or amend Acts that are in breach of it, but apparently NZ doesn’t have any governments like that.

          That said, there’s no suppression of free speech involved in expressing the opinion that this religious fascist Sahib is a cancer on society and should never have been granted citizenship. I’d like to see a Labour or Green MP say so.

  4. james 4

    Quote from you:
    “Chief Human Rights Commissioner David Rutherford said he and a team of lawyers found the report’s conclusions were legally flawed.
    It was never published because, she says, the Attorney General Chris Finlayson did not like its recommendations.”

    quote from link:

    “Noonan’s successor, chief Human Rights Commissioner David Rutherford, said he and a team of lawyers found the report’s conclusions were legally flawed. That was why it was not published.”

    Twisting the truth in your posting there Rosemary.

    Mixing up quotes from different people making it look like another statement – isnt that more than a little dishonest?

    • Rosemary McDonald 4.1

      “Twisting the truth in your posting there Rosemary.

      Mixing up quotes from different people making it look like another statement – isnt that more than a little dishonest?”

      Step by step James….folow the link to Natrad’s site and you will see that other than my first paragraph…I am quoting directly from the webpage.

      I did have a copy and paste issue, and obviously the “” that I had put in…got lost in my edit.

      If you had read the Natrad article…all would have been clear. (Assuming you can read that much text at one go?)

      Instead, of course, you have a go at my integrity.

      Typical.

  5. james 5

    Or indeed neglecting to mention the part that didnt fit with your narrative: That the report was not published because it was legally flawed? – Noonan’s successor, chief Human Rights Commissioner David Rutherford

    [lprent: Rather than impuning the intellect of others, how about just demonstrating that you can use this site intelligently.

    Trying to use the reply link that is attached below every comment. I put it there for a reason. It moves the add comment text box under the replied to comment and puts the comment you make into the correct place in the comment stream.

    Leave the “add comments to the end” to the few remaining antique and technically inadequate sites that like disjoint comment streams. ]

    • James Thrace 5.1

      If you read the link properly it attributes the statement that Finlayson didn’t like the recommendations was stated by”she” I.e. Ros Noonan.

      • james 5.1.1

        Indeed – but thats not what was inferred in Rosemarys post.

        Regardless – stepping back and looking at the bigger and more important picture – Whatever the reasons for the report not being released – if there has been wide spread abuse of Children, it needs to be investigated and all concerned (where possible) punished to the fullest extent.

        I think one thing we can all agree on is that kind of thing should be above politics.

        [lprent: Huh! you did it here. Why didn’t you do that further up the comment stream. ]

        • Rosemary McDonald 5.1.1.1

          “…if there has been wide spread abuse of Children, ”

          What do you mean….”if”?

  6. adam 6

    Uplifting song from Puerto Rican alternative hip hop band Calle 13. I’ve had this on loop the last couple of days, and the video is awesome. Lyrically I love the whole thing, with a truly wonderful chorus. A workers song for a new age.

  7. amirite 7

    I’m now pretty sure that the Government doesn’t want the truth about the Pike River Mine tragedy to come out, ever.

    Solid Energy’ refusal to re-enter mine irrational, engineer says http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11753793

    • BM 7.1

      Health and safety.

      I’ve worked on Solid energy sites they take h & s very very seriously.

      They will not send people in there because they consider the risk far too high, that’s the start and end of the discussion as far as Solid Energy is concerned.

      • mauī 7.1.1

        Thanks for defending the indefensible Mr Solid Energy. When are you going to get police men and women off the street because they face too many “risks”.

        • dv 7.1.1.1

          Can some explain why the mine needs to be sealed?

          • Whispering Kate 7.1.1.1.1

            dv -I have wondered about that as well. Why can’t it be left as is until the powers that be consider there is technology safe enough for experts to enter the mine and actually find out what went wrong. Isn’t this the way it should be, so that we can learn from this mistake in future for other miners and their lives. Oh stupid me this Government doesn’t give a shit for truth seeking. More like shirking from any liability. The 2022 report on child abuse is another abdication from responsibility – legal flaws – what a bloody laugh that is.

          • mary_a 7.1.1.1.2

            @ dv (7.1.1.1) … to conceal and hide evidence of a crime scene.

        • BM 7.1.1.2

          DIRECTORS’ DUE DILIGENCE
          Due diligence requires directors (as officers) to take reasonable steps to understand the PCBU’s operations and health and safety risks, and to ensure that they are managed so that the organisation meets its legal obligations.
          Directors (and other officers) must exercise the care, diligence, and skill that a reasonable director (or officer) would exercise in the same circumstances. What is considered reasonable will depend on the particular circumstances, including the nature of the business or undertaking, and the director or officer’s role and responsibilities.
          All officers, including directors, may seek health and safety advice from experts or others within their organisation, such as managers. Where they choose to rely on this advice, the reliance must be reasonable. Directors (and other officers) should obtain enough health and safety knowledge to ask the right questions of the right people and to obtain credible information.

          DIRECTORS’ LIABILITY
          Directors and other officers will be personally liable if they breach their due diligence duty. The maximum penalty for a serious breach of the due diligence duty is imprisonment for up to 5 years and/or a fine of up to $600,0005. Insurance cannot be used to pay fines under HSWA

          The directors cannot allow individuals into that mine, they know there’s a real risk of the recovery operation going wrong and people getting injured or killed.
          if it does, they’re either looking at a huge fine or time inside, no director or CEO is going to sign up for that.

          http://www.worksafe.govt.nz/worksafe/information-guidance/all-guidance-items/hswa-good-practice-guides/health-and-safety-guide-good-governance-for-directors/directors-guidelines-on-their-responsibilities

          • dv 7.1.1.2.1

            Doesn’t answer why it needs to be sealed BM

            AND why there’re were NO prosecutions.

            • BM 7.1.1.2.1.1

              H & S is all about finding risk and eliminating risk.

              The mine is a risk, it gets sealed thus the risk is eliminated.

              • dv

                So why do we still allow roads, farms, mines.

                And how many people have died in Pike mine in the last year?

                AND why no prosecutions?

                • Ad

                  There have been no people die in the Pike River coalmine because no-one was allowed in because quite a lot of people died in it.
                  You may remember.

                  There were no successful prosecutions because the law was weak.
                  The Royal Commission of Inquiry recommended a complete change to the Health and Safety legislation.

                  Which the government did.

                  This new law is very specific about tunnel mining regulations. Because it’s historically been an incredibly risky occupation.

                  Any QC or engineer who writes a report or has an opinion in the media and wants to become a Director of a mine company will feel their skin tighten with the moral and financial and legal responsibility for those lives of everyone who next enters their mine.

                  • dv

                    There have been no people die in the Pike River coalmine because no-one was allowed in because quite a lot of people died in it.
                    You may remember.

                    SO why is it necessary to SEAL the mine? Seems that the way it is is doing the job.

                    There were no successful prosecutions because the law was weak.
                    AND no investigation of the crime scene

                    The Royal Commission of Inquiry recommended a complete change to the Health and Safety legislation.

                    So how come farming is excluded then

          • McFlock 7.1.1.2.2

            nice try.

            They know that there are a number hazards, some serious, in that mine. As a mining company, they should also be aware of how to eliminate, isolate or minimise those risks.

            Just saying ‘ooo it’s too dangerous’ doesn’t cut it. It’s their business to dig holes in the ground and send people in there. They should know how to do it reasonably safely, or shut up shop.

            • Colonial Viper 7.1.1.2.2.1

              As a mining company, they should also be aware of how to eliminate, isolate or minimise those risks.

              There is no business rationale to undertake those kinds of costly and risky business activities in that area.

            • Ad 7.1.1.2.2.2

              So shut up shop is what they did.

              • McFlock

                Solid energy have ceased all mining operations, everywhere, because they can’t competently run a mine?

                Or have they simply decided not to enter PRC because the government wants dividends and there’s not enough coal to justify the expense of mining it safely?

                • Ad

                  There are no dividends. Solid Energy are bankrupt, and the remaining assets have been sold. They are shutting it up because it is a massive health and safety risk.

                  • McFlock

                    Your assertion is plausible. However, I have trust issues when it comes to this government breaking promises for reasons of “health and safety” when other experienced professionals are saying those risks can be reasonably managed.

                • millsy

                  From what I understand, the site will be handed to DOC when it is cleaned up.

                  • Rosemary McDonald

                    “From what I understand, the site will be handed to DOC when it is cleaned up.”

                    From what I understand, the site will be handed to DOC when it is covered up.

                    I fixed it for you. 😉

      • Andre 7.1.2

        I can certainly understand why Solid Energy would want no part of any kind of responsibility for anyone entering that mine again.

        But it seems from reports that there are individuals with appropriate expertise and experience to assess the risk that are willing to go in at their own risk. They appear to understand that if they got into trouble inside, there would be no possibility of assistance or rescue.

        In a way, that’s analogous to extreme sports. In my younger days as an expert sportsman, just for the thrill of it I went into situations where the only help could possibly come from my mates who went in with me. We would have strongly discouraged others from risking themselves to help us if we got into trouble. We would have been very offended at people without that expertise trying to stop us. But we all did a fair share of helping others (or recovering the remains) where our expertise was needed.

        We still allow people to risk themselves in extreme sports. So surely there can be some way to allow mine experts that are able and keen to go in at their own risk to do so?

        • McFlock 7.1.2.1

          No, I wouldn’t want that: the next step would be for employers to make all their staff sign “at my own risk” waivers.

          I’d like to see Solid Energy’s list of hazards and risk assessment for entering the mine – if they did one.

        • Ad 7.1.2.2

          There are no analogies here.
          There is only the task of turning around the shonky two-hundred-year-old NZ health and safety in mining culture of ‘don’t give a damn dead’ to ‘home safe, every single day’.
          There is absolutely no compromise on this one.

          • Robertina 7.1.2.2.1

            That’s incorrect; New Zealand’s mining health and safety had been strong before the 1992 law change as a consequence of earlier tragedies.

            ”In October 1997, 13 years before Pike blew itself up, retired chief inspector of coal mines, Harry Bell, wrote to the then Minister of Energy, Max Bradford, warning him that reforms under way to weaken the specialist mines inspectorate were deeply flawed, and ignored the tragic lessons of the past….
            His actions as an inspector had saved the lives of scores of men at the Huntly underground mine in 1992, when he ordered the mine shut after smoke was detected: the place blew up three days later, with no lives lost.”

            http://www.noted.co.nz/archive/listener-nz-2013/pike-river-a-chilling-warning-from-the-past/

            Later Bell worked for a time at Pike and gave evidence about that and the effects of deregulation at the royal commission:
            http://www.noted.co.nz/archive/listener-nz-2011/pike-river-mine-inquiry-day-4/

            • Colonial Viper 7.1.2.2.1.1

              ”In October 1997, 13 years before Pike blew itself up, retired chief inspector of coal mines, Harry Bell, wrote to the then Minister of Energy, Max Bradford, warning him that reforms under way to weaken the specialist mines inspectorate were deeply flawed, and ignored the tragic lessons of the past….

              Did the 3 term Labour Govt which followed that 1997 dated letter sort things.

            • Ad 7.1.2.2.1.2

              It was crap-ass weak at the time of the explosion, and Pike River showed it up.

              Max Bradford has a whole lot to answer for, but blaming him for Pike River is a bit of a stretch. This has been our culture for 200 years, not 20. We all have to own it.

              • Robertina

                Health and safety law was watered down in 92, and several years later the mines inspectorate was dumped. Those are material changes that affect safety in mines.
                The system was no doubt imperfect but it saved people’s lives by getting them out of unsafe mines because mines inspectors were regularly on-site.

                As has been widely canvassed, Pike was an outlier in the industry at the time.
                That’s why some Coast mining families wouldn’t let their men work there, even for occasional contracting jobs. The place was full of clean-skins and senior mining men from overseas.
                Because it had a very poor safety culture and a bully in charge, the men at Pike were at the mercy of the threadbare regulations introduced in the free-market 1990s.

    • b waghorn 7.2

      The main risk that solid energy is trying to avoid is searchers finding out that men survived the initial blast and died from the gutlessness of the suit wearing tossers who wouldn’t listen to the old hands and enter the mine after the explosion.

      • Ad 7.2.1

        The main risk is that the Directors are held liable for further injury or death.

        • b waghorn 7.2.1.1

          Wake up Ad .Not a single person went to jail for the initial deaths , people at the top never get held liable for anything ,

          • Ad 7.2.1.1.1

            And so this government changed the entire Health and Safety legislation as a result of a Royal Commission.
            This particularly relates to the owners of tunnel mines.

            • Clump_AKA Sam 7.2.1.1.1.1

              Before the 80’s there use to be a manual for everything, so if anything went wrong you’d look it up and could place financial penalties on the employer, then we got rid of company manuals and started blaming employees, subjecting them to alcohol/drug tests, a side effect was less on the job training. Now we’re back to the 80’s and insurance compliance costs. But none of this has to do with safety, and even less job specific training

              • Ad

                Well, it’s 2016 not the gung-ho nutjob 1980s, and we have one printed copy, and there’s still sign-on sheets, and tag-on and tag-off for going into the shafts, but after that we have things called computers, and cellphones, and gps locator beacons and other actual technical stuff.

                There’s also no-excuses blood and urine tests for every person at random: fail and you can be fired. Try that in a coalmine in the 1980s.

                There’s ‘win the job on the non-priced attributes’ jobs right across this environment in this sector now.

                But there’s also 24-7 infra red cameras every 100 metres, and Health and Safety people from both the company and the client and the regulator working together every shift. And audits for every Near Miss let alone any LTI.

                But there are also 6-hour tunnel inductions, and slightly shorter ones for visitors, and decades of experience before you get B Grade and A Grade tunneling certifications, and a host of other measures …

                … and still things can go wrong. And they do.

                • McFlock

                  Well, the “tag-on/tag-off” routine was bunk at PRC for a start, wasn’t it?

                  But a big factor in preventing future deaths is finding out what happened in the first place. What if PRC basically did everything correctly yet it still blew up? That’d be worth knowing just as much as finding culpable fault, because it means there’s a new hazard that nobody else has encountered and been able to tell the tale.

                  • Clump_AKA Sam

                    I mean all we are or decision makers are doing to the NZ mining industry is increasing the number of things that can go wrong. From the photos that Iv seen if PRM, the service lines are hung way to low, there’s a lot of junk electrical fittings for ascitic pleasure. Not to mention the rising decline which plays havoc with air flow. But these are all regulation. Which means that NZ mining regulations kill miners, literally.

                  • Ad

                    No, the reports are multitudinous.
                    Just stop.
                    Let them rest.

                    Their best legacy is to comprehensively change the culture of workplace injury in New Zealand.

                    They would be proud of that.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      No, the reports are multitudinous.
                      Just stop.
                      Let them rest.

                      You mean let them rot where they died, without a proper burial.

                      They would be proud of that.

                      Or maybe they should be put to rest alongside relatives and family members in cemeteries close to their homes.

                • John up North

                  Does the random drug testing include all office staff up to and including the CEO? How is the test list generated? All too often these testing regimes target people on tools when, as the past has shown, stuff ups caused by office wonks with addled brains bring companies down much more spectacularly.

                  • Ad

                    Yes the list goes all the way to the top, as it should. Thanks for asking.
                    Every single person in my firm no matter what has to do it. And they are random.

                    What the big construction and mining firms have to do over the next year is to train up the subbies and smaller firms that if they don’t do the same regime for the whole of their safety framework, they won’t get the jobs.

                    That’s the big part of cultural change that NZ is going to go through.

        • Clump_AKA Sam 7.2.1.2

          that’s not our objective. Personally my objective is to give those who can’t speak a voice on this god forsaken web board

      • inspider 7.2.2

        Solid energy weren’t involved in the mine when the accident happened so I doubt their directors have any concerns about concealing the cause. Get over your conspiracy thinking.

        • b waghorn 7.2.2.1

          i love a good stir , and chucking out random thoughts to see what comes back is a hobbie, tin foil free zone here mate.

  8. Ffloyd 8

    What’s going on at Pike River? It’s quite sinister. Why this ‘seal the mine no matter what’ attitude. What’s being hidden? After watching the doco on Monday I’m guessing ‘quite a bit’. Why has John Key not honoured his ‘heart felt ,tears in eyes’ promise made to the grief stricken families of the miners who lost their lives. His “don’t listen to people who say we won’t, they are just playing on your emotions” sounded genuine at the time, for about five seconds! He never had any intention, imo of doing anything. Weasel words to sound good. Usual m.o. And why aren’t we being told where they are getting all their ‘EXPERT ADVICE!’ from. The cat, the wife, the son, man on the street,…. where??
    Useless waste of space Key is, (little sod turning sod), and so is bluddy Smith. Can’t wait for karma to bite them on the bum.
    Aroha to Pike River heroes. Keep fighting!

  9. ropata 9

    The dark side of the “Kiwi Dream”. Property investment has become an orgy of greed by the 1-2%. They are encouraged by poor legislation and a government that does nothing to stop rentier behaviour.

    Secret to buying Auckland property: ‘use parents’ house’, says super-investor

    What’s stopping us getting rich? Multi-millionaire landlord explains
    What is stopping New Zealanders from getting rich?

    That’s the question a $23 million 31-property owning Auckland landlord, Ron Hoy Fong is asking at a seminar in Auckland on Saturday.

    The answer? New Zealanders are hesitant to invest money.

    “New Zealand homeowners are obsessed with keeping their jobs which also keeps them poor. We have a national obsession with keeping a job which stands for keeping you just over broke.

    “When people work, they live according to their income and they spend it. They’re not investing it. They’re on a treadmill. The more they work, the more they spend. They don’t invest.

    “When it comes to retirement, it’s too late for them make any reasonable investment so they have a passive income during their retirement because the pension is not enough,” Hoy Fong said.

    He encouraged homeowners to use equity in their own homes, borrow against that and invest the money.

    “There are too many people now sitting on goldmines and have good equity in their homes that they are not leveraging to plan for their financial future,” Hoy Fong said.

    Investors like him have been criticised by Radio Live’s Duncan Garner who has asked what hope buyers have against the professionals.

    “No wonder other Kiwis are missing out on houses. We can’t compete with organised property investment groups who are openly targeting central Auckland properties,” Garner has said.

  10. Sanctuary 10

    “…That’s the question a $23 million 31-property owning Auckland landlord, Ron Hoy Fong is asking at a seminar in Auckland on Saturday….”

    A parasite.

    • ropata 10.1

      Yes and he disparages people who actually work for a living. How the fuck is a country expected to grow if nobody wants to work anymore and just sit on capital gains and rental income. NZ is heading for a Wall St style crash if we just keep selling inflated property to each other and pretend that is economic growth.

      Ron Hoy Fong and his ilk are making zero contribution to NZ, they are leeching off the productivity of others. And they vote for a government that likes to suppress wages and smash unions. It is low-level class warfare…

      • mary_a 10.1.1

        @ ropata (10.1) … spot on there. Agree 100%.

        It’s the attitudes of the likes of the Fongs of this world, who are rapidly contributing to turning NZ into the filthy cesspit it’s become! All with the blessing of the corrupt Natz and their dirty politics!

      • ropata 10.1.2

        Why is it that the National govt's "go to" after an earthquake is to import workers rather than investing in the people in NZ who want work?— Bishop Melanie D. (@melulater) November 22, 2016

        @melulater @jofromgreylynn immigration is over 70k per year, all property speculators or rich kids on "study" visas, not workers— ɥɔsǝdɐd qoɹ (@ropata) November 22, 2016

        • James Thrace 10.1.2.1

          I made a similar comment on OM yesterday. If National had invested in the unemployed after Christchurch, we would have the skills and attributes required to rebuild SH1 now.

          But no, more short term thinking and immediately importing workers.

          CV made a disingenuous reply about stopping immigration which wasn’t really the point.

          • Colonial Viper 10.1.2.1.1

            Disingenuous?

            More like spot on.

            Cheap, compliant foreign labour willing to work 70 hours a week for fuck all is always going to be preferred under the current system.

            Build the wall.

            If National had invested in the unemployed after Christchurch, we would have the skills and attributes required to rebuild SH1 now.

            would these people have been willing to work 70 hours a week for minimum wage or less, and be happy to remain un-unionised and compliant?

            No?

            Then what does investment in training unemployed Kiwis have to do with anything?

            Build the wall.

            • James Thrace 10.1.2.1.1.1

              What comes after you build the wall then? Dawn raids to remove overstayers?

              That’s the slippery slope you’re proposing.

              • Colonial Viper

                Slippery slope?

                I have simply remarked that your idea of training unemployed Kiwis is nice in theory but it is never going to beat the ‘market advantages’ of importing compliant low cost non-unionised labour at will in the numbers required.

                So, “built the wall” (metaphorically and employment market-wise) or don’t complain.

                • McFlock

                  they tuk-r jerbs!

                  The only market advantage of importing low-cost labour is the ability to break employment laws with fewer complaints.

                  Giving every new arrival a pamphlet with their rights and a dob-in-at-no-risk free phone number would be cheaper and more effective than xenophobic wall-building.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Giving every new arrival a pamphlet with their rights and a dob-in-at-no-risk free phone number would be cheaper and more effective than xenophobic wall-building.

                    You have an interesting concept of “no risk.”

                    What happens to these labourers and workers when their work visa sponsoring employer gets prosecuted and shut down?

                    • McFlock

                      MBIE could take over the visa sponsorship. And by the time it’s gone through the court system the migrant labourers could well have have finished up their contract anyway, what with seasonal labour and all that.

                      Worst case, they have to find another job with an employer who obeys the law. Did you want me to write a full white paper proposal for you to consider options other than “build a wall”?

                      But your concern for the people you want to keep out of the country is quite touching.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Just noting that your idea of “no risk” was very odd and also now noting how much effort you’re willing to put into helping imported low cost labour which doesn’t belong in NZ.

                    • McFlock

                      Wait for the full manifesto, then you can take it “seriously but not literally” /sarc

                      Keep all the notes on me you want, apparently Farrar used to do the same as an undergrad. Your journey to the tory side is almost complete.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Tory? Is there something Tory or something National about eliminating the supply of cheap imported non-unionised compliant casual labour from the local job market?

                    • Colonial Viper

                      BTW when I say “noting” I’m not making any kind of record or screenshot 😛 I’m just mentally marking the point that’s all.

                    • Craig H

                      If they are in Canterbury, they can change employers at any time as the employer is not listed on their work visas. If they are outside Canterbury, they can apply to vary the conditions of their work visas to a new employer once they find a new job.

                      Immigration NZ will also waive fees and prioritise applications as necessary, and can issue open work visas (i.e. Can work for any employer) to allow people to find another job.

                      In short, INZ have plenty of options.

                    • McFlock

                      Indeed, it’s a common tory foil to blame immigrants for shortcomings in domestic employment law.

                      That, and supporting tough-guy demagogues who have policies of extrajudicial murder. That’s pretty fucking tory, too.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      I’m not blaming the immigrants – I’m blaming our slack political leadership which allows thousands of cheap, compliant, low skilled, non unionised workers into the NZ work force for the sake of employer convenience.

                      These people should never set foot into the NZ workforce.

                      No wonder the National Government loves this situation and loves the current set of so-called left wingers who seem intent on protecting this situation.

                      Immigration NZ will also waive fees and prioritise applications as necessary, and can issue open work visas (i.e. Can work for any employer) to allow people to find another job.

                      In short, INZ have plenty of options.

                      Righties will be pleased to hear that NZ has so many ways of importing more cheap compliant non-union labour into the country to undermine the bargaining power of Kiwi workers.

                    • McFlock

                      lol – now you referred to “these people”. That’s on the tory bingo card, too.

                      The only reason immigrants are “cheap” is because our employment laws aren’t enforced, and the only reason they’re non-unionised is because most NZ workers are non-unionised. As for “compliant”, what power do they have to do anything about it under the current legislative regime?

                      Righties use immigration as a distraction from our shit employment legislation. You’ve got the party line down well. You’ll be standing as a nat in no time.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      If National take a position like Winston Peters where they reduce immigration numbers by 90% or so and tighten up hugely on work visas, sure I’ll sign up as a member.

                      But of course they won’t, because it’s most certainly not a “Tory” position.

                      And Labour is too gutless and too free market to take a strong stance for NZ workers.

                      Meanwhile keep being an apologist for the floods of low cost compliant non-unionised labour filling up our jobs market place.

                      Just don’t keep whining about the unemployment rate at the same time.

                    • McFlock

                      lol

                      so you’re an old-school dawn raid nat, not a neolib ruthenasia nat. Big deal, toryboy

                      The unemployment rate is result of government economic policy, not immigration.
                      They didn’t tuk-r jerbz!

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Kiwi workers shouldn’t have to compete with large numbers of low cost compliant non-unionised foreign workers imported in the many thousands per year by cost cutting employers determined to erode the position of NZ workers.

                      You can keep being an apologist though.

                    • McFlock

                      Millions of kiwi workers shouldn’t have to compete with each other in a barely-unionised below-living-wage environment that provides tremendous advantages to cost cutting employers determined to erode the position of NZ workers.
                      Oh, and a comparatively much smaller number of migrant workers.

                      FIFY, toryboy

                  • Craig H

                    All work visa approval letters include a fact sheet about employment rights in NZ, and Immigration NZ have fact sheets in multiple languages available.

            • marty mars 10.1.2.1.1.2

              Wall building is idiotic build a well instead

  11. Pasupial 11

    This is US Politics related, so scroll past now if that doesn’t interest you.

    Why is it Stein not Clinton who is asking for recounts?

    Stein launched an online fundraising page seeking donations toward a $2m fund she said was needed to request reviews of the results in Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin…
    Stein and her campaign made clear they were acting because they wanted to ensure the election results were authentic, rather than because they thought she had actually won any of the contests. Several states allow any candidate who was on the ballot to request a recount…

    University of Michigan computer security expert, noted that this Friday is the deadline for requesting a recount in Wisconsin, where Trump’s winning margin stands at 0.7%. In Pennsylvania, where his margin is 1.2%, the deadline falls on Monday. In Michigan, where the Trump lead is currently just 0.3%, the deadline is Wednesday 30 November.

    https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/nov/23/jill-stein-election-recount-fund-michigan-wisconsin-pennsylvania

    These deadlines are important, and it seems weird to be waiting on Stein’s online begging (just shy of half a million so far) to achieve something that should have been part of the Democrats strategic considerations all along. The actual presidential election is not until the 19th of December, (the general election just deciding the numbers that would be assigned by parties to participate in the electoral college).

    The focal point of any possible electoral cyberattack presumably would have been electronic voting machines that, whether or not they are connected to the internet, could be infected with malware that could change vote totals. But many of those machines produce a paper record of the vote that could be checked to see if the vote tabulations are accurate.

    Pennsylvania is considered one of the states most susceptible to hacking because 96 percent of its voting machines have no paper trail. Wisconsin is far less vulnerable because it uses electronic machines with voter-verifiable paper trails in most counties. Michigan is considered the safest of the three because it uses paper ballots.

    http://www.salon.com/2016/11/23/experts-ask-clinton-to-seek-recount-in-3-battleground-states/

    I find that lack of an independent paper record to be one of the best arguments against electronic voting- what can they even recount there? [Though watch out for autoplaying video sucking up your bandwidth on that page (push pause on the player somewhere down the right side if it starts).] Nate Silver argues against the call for a recount, but I don’t find his argument that convincing:

    at a time when the number of voters without confidence in the accuracy of the vote count is rising, the burden of proof ought to be on people claiming there was electoral fraud. The paradox is that in our current electoral system, without routine audits, seeking proof requires calling for a recount, which in itself can undermine confidence in the vote.

    http://fivethirtyeight.com/features/demographics-not-hacking-explain-the-election-results/

    • Colonial Viper 11.1

      Why is it Stein not Clinton who is asking for recounts?

      Why do you think this is?

      The Clinton camp has tonnes of legal resources and money to file all these appeals and recounts.

      Why haven’t they? What’s stopping her?

      • marty mars 11.1.1

        There is no point the deep state multicorp establishment candidate won.

        • Colonial Viper 11.1.1.1

          That’s Clinton. She got all the Wall St, Hollywood studio, hedge fund and big corporation donations.

          The entire media establishment was in her corner.

          And Hillary still wants to be President.

          So answer me – why doesn’t she stump up the rest of the $2M (which to her is chump change) and get her legal team on to the recounts?

          • marty mars 11.1.1.1.1

            Same answer as above – some people can also let go and move on and hopefully she is one of them.

          • Pasupial 11.1.1.1.2

            I’m figuring that the Democrats think they’ve painted themselves into a corner with the; “that’s horrifying”, debate position. Also, maybe they just had no Plan B for losing. Which seems short-sighted, but then Clinton didn’t turn up to face the glass ceiling on election night. Given how she treated her supporters then, she is never going to be president now.

            The DNC needs a complete overhaul. It’s good that DWS is gone, but if she is replaced by Howard Dean that means stepping back to the past again.

            Stein’s recount fundraiser is over one and a half million now, so that’s Wisconsin at least (remember USA dates are a day after us):

            Here are the filing fees and deadlines for each state:

            Wisconsin: $1.1 million by Nov 25
            Pennsylvania: $.5 million by Nov 28
            Michigan: $.6 million by Nov 30

            Those are filing fees alone. The costs associated with recounts are a function of state law. Attorney’s fees are likely to be another $1 million.

            https://jillstein.nationbuilder.com/recount

            • Colonial Viper 11.1.1.1.2.1

              If they return Pelosi as minority leader in the House you can almost be sure that nothing deep will change inside the Democratic Party. She has overseen the devastation of Democrat numbers in the House over the last several years.

              However if they successfully move her on and put in that young guy from rustbelt Ohio (Tim Ryan?) that may be a hint of renewal of the party with new blood.

            • Pasupial 11.1.1.1.2.2

              That amount they need just keeps going up each time I look at the page (I should really be taking screen shots to show how the page has changed over the course of the day). They are currently at two and a quarter million (ie almost at the initial requested $2,500,000 within a day). At this rate, it’s a shame they’re not looking at Florida too!

              In 2004, the Cobb/LaMarche campaign demanded a recount in Ohio. Because of their efforts, an election administrator went to jail. We also exposed the profound problems with DRE machines, which helped launch an election integrity movement. That provoked California to engage in a “top to bottom” review of their voting system, which culminated in the abolition of DRE machines…

              If we raise more than what’s needed, the surplus will also go toward election integrity efforts. [As above, but ending:] Attorney’s fees are likely to be another $2-3 million, then there are the costs of the statewide recount observers in all three states. The total cost is likely to be $6-7 million.

  12. b waghorn 12

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=11753882

    Any one keen to take the government to court over their failure to protect future generations from cc , like these fine usa students.

  13. greywarshark 13

    The latest National government fiddle. Greenpeace is informing everyone so we can stop this next step on the treadmill to our decline and poverty.

    SAVE OUR FORESTSThe Minister for Conservation has filed legal action to ‘reclassify’ part of the Ruahine Forest Park so that it can be flooded for the Ruataniwha Dam. A dam that will mean more industrial dairying, and more pollution in our rivers.

    Yep, that’s right. Maggie Barry, the Minister of Conservation. We shouldn’t have to do this.

    The Court of Appeal already ruled that downgrading the status of the land was unlawful when Forest & Bird challenged it in court, but now Maggie Barry is taking it to the Supreme Court.

    Bet someone has named a rose after Maggie Barry, her being such a lovely green-thumbed lady. A rose by any other name would smell the same. You decide on the name of the scent – the upper classes with money to burn and a sense of irony might buy ‘Poison’.

  14. xanthe 14

    commentary on the media coverage of the US election

    http://www.unz.com/article/an-obituary-of-the-new-york-times/

    • ianmac 14.1

      NYT really is a corporate entity with journalism a different lower ranking rather than a place of journalistic ethics.
      Rise and Fall of the Roman (USA?) Empire.

      • Robertina 14.1.1

        It’s ironic that you criticise the Times’ journalism standards when the website that carried its ”obituary” is running a defence of the KKK and an article entitled ”The Feminization of Politics”.

        • Colonial Viper 14.1.1.1

          Shame you can’t address the contents of the article in question.

          Lazy of you, actually.

          The New York Times sold out to the Clinton campaign, and now they appear to have serious and ongoing psychological difficulties wrapping their liberal-neocon heads around the fact that Trump won despite weighting their coverage totally against him.

    • Puckish Rogue 14.2

      Very interesting, thank you for posting the link

  15. pat 15

    “Walker, however, claimed that doubt over the role of human activity in climate change “is a view shared by half the climatologists in the world. We need good science to tell us what the reality is and science could do that if politicians didn’t interfere with it.””

    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/nov/22/nasa-earth-donald-trump-eliminate-climate-change-research

    Michael Mann, a climate scientist at Penn State University, said Nasa has a “critical and unique role” in observing Earth and climate change.

    “Without the support of Nasa, not only the US but the entire world would be taking a hard hit when it comes to understanding the behavior of our climate and the threats posed by human-caused climate change,” he said.

    build walls…….sea walls

  16. The lost sheep 16

    @Robert Guyton
    Apologies for the delay in catching up with your response.

    I asked you to state directly what you would do about the Eco-cide of our taonga natural heritage species?
    But your reply tip-toes carefully around any statement of your active support for pest control.

    Rather than confirming you would actively support the annihilation of pests on a small Island, you merely say it is ‘doable’. And for the rest of Aotearoa you limit your comment to what is ‘not feasible’ in your opinion.
    So I’m still as blank and uncomprehending as your fellow Councillors as to what if anything you believe should be done about introduced predators?

    So directly and honestly Robert, can you tell me about your vision for introduced Predators in Southland?
    1. In which areas, if any, do you actively support the ‘annihilation’ of introduced Predators?
    2. Which, if any, species do you support the annihilation of?
    3. For the areas you do not support predator control in, would you leave introduced predators completely free of human intervention, or do you have an alternative course of action you would propose?

  17. b waghorn 17

    Just got informed by the very nice man who shot a few x rays of my carcass , that the wait time on my results has gone from a very respectable 2 to 3 days to anything from 3 to 4 weeks , fucking brighter future my arse key you useless %^&**($**^$£”£W”

    • weka 17.1

      sorry to hear that mate. FWIW, and I hate to say this, but it appears that the people that keep hassling the system get their needs attended to sooner.

  18. “So directly and honestly Robert, can you tell me about your vision for introduced Predators in Southland?
    1. In which areas, if any, do you actively support the ‘annihilation’ of introduced Predators?
    In areas where total annihilation is feasible in the first place and in the long term. No point in throwing huge resources at a temporary measure.
    2. Which, if any, species do you support the annihilation of?
    None. I’m not a supporter of/believer in, the proposal to annihilate some small mammals from Southland and/or NZ. On an offshore island, yes, from the shed in which I store my hen food, perhaps, but then, I know it’ll be temporary.
    3. For the areas you do not support predator control in, would you leave introduced predators completely free of human intervention, or do you have an alternative course of action you would propose?”
    There aren’t areas I “do not support predator control in” I’m responding to your “annihilation” proposal. Management of small mammals doesn’t only mean annihilation. There are already measures in place in most areas where small mammals like those you refer to; possum hunters/trappers have a lot covered. Cats too, are involved in management of small mammals in some situations. My “alternative course of action” is nuanced and complex, like the wild world, the model I refer to. Wanna talk about wilding pines? 🙂

    • The lost sheep 18.1

      In areas where total annihilation is feasible in the first place and in the long term.
      So for Southland, would you include Rakiura as feasible?
      What, if any Mainland Southland areas would you consider feasible?

      My “alternative course of action” is nuanced and complex, like the wild world, the model I refer to
      That’s a very nuanced way of not replying directly to the question of what those methods would be!
      You have said you don’t believe in ‘temporary / half’ measures, so in those areas you don’t believe it is feasible to permanently eliminate predators, am I correct in deducing that you would be happy for zero deliberate human intervention to occur, and let the ‘wild world’ sort out it’s own balance?

      Wilding Pines? I think they should be controlled. You….

      • xanthe 18.1.1

        dont assume!
        “You have said you don’t believe in ‘temporary / half’ measures, so in those areas you don’t believe it is feasible to permanently eliminate predators, am I correct in deducing that you would be happy for zero deliberate human intervention to occur, and let the ‘wild world’ sort out it’s own balance?”

        Thats just a bullshit non argument.

        Nuanced means nuanced what dont you understand about nuanced.

        the reality is that total annihilation is not feasable in most instances and we are wasting huge resource and doing irrepariable damage in running a campaign of misinformation that it is so.

        we actually need to work out what will be a sustainable balance area by area and the answer in most cases will be continuous management by people on the ground. If you are looking for/belive in total final solution you are gullible and misled !

        • The lost sheep 18.1.1.1

          Nuanced means nuanced what dont you understand about nuanced.
          I understand the meaning of ‘nuance’, it’s just the details of what Robert is being nuanced about that are lacking at this point.

          I’m also struggling with ‘nuanced’ and ‘introduced predators’.
          You know the Rat is going to kill the Kaka chicks. You either stop it or you don’t. Where’s the nuance in that?

          • Robert Guyton 18.1.1.1.1

            “either you stop it or you don’t”
            Talking in absolutes there, lost sheep. Rat extermination programmes under way now will be affecting the rat predation on kaka rate, so it’s not a matter of stop it or don’t stop it – in other words, it’s a matter of degree. A nuanced view, that.

  19. Rakiura? Maybe, but boats… Mainland says re-infestation to me, unless you’re suggesting a fence. Even then, it only takes an earthquake…rats move swiftly. They swim well too.
    I don’t believe temporary or half measures will result in permanent annihilation. You would not be correct in,” deducing that (I) would be happy for zero deliberate human intervention to occur, and let the ‘wild world’ sort out it’s own balance”.
    “Wilding Pines? I think they should be controlled. You….”
    Me? No, I don’t think I should be controlled…
    Wilding pines is another story; a story very similar, to my mind, to wilding mammal pests. Have you read The New Wild, lost sheep? Worth a browse.

    • The lost sheep 19.1

      You would not be correct in,” deducing that (I) would be happy for zero deliberate human intervention to occur, and let the ‘wild world’ sort out it’s own balance”.

      O.K. So what would be the correct answer to the question of what deliberate Human interventions you would support for an area it was not in your opinion feasible to eliminate predators? Lets say Fiordland for instance?

      I’ve had a brief look at The New Wild, but I don’t think that philosophy is at all suitable for Aotearoa. Some areas that have had massive human induced change for hundreds of 1000’s of years maybe, but not here.

      • Robert Guyton 19.1.1

        I think your original position, lost sheep, was to ask, do I support the proposal to annihilate all mammalian predators in NZ. Now, you are asking what I would do in a location where there are rats, etc. that couldn’t feasibly be eliminated altogether, am I right? I’d support a range of approaches, traditional and innovative, providing they proved themselves worthwhile, that is, they caused an improvement in the diversity of organisms in that area. It’s a very complex field, manipulating populations and ecologies, and I find your question a little simplistic but I put that down to the restrictions of the medium, blog commenting, and the lack of immediacy in responding – I was away this evening teaching organic horticulture, and couldn’t maintain the conversation you began earlier today. Regarding wilding pines and any other organism that is becoming rampant, I advise my students to consider adding complexity to the situation through the addition of plants and other organisms, rather than taking the “destroy the singular issue” route. Foxes in Fiordland? Now I’m just teasing, but I remember clearly when Tim Flannery suggested the Papua New Guinean harpogornis eagle for possum control there. I loved it, but Forest and Bird members in the audience gasped in horror!

        • The lost sheep 19.1.1.1

          Apologies for the stilted nature of the discussion Robert. Being my own Boss I don’t have the luxury of wasting my Employers time on endless blogging like some on this site!

          proved themselves worthwhile, that is, they caused an improvement in the diversity of organisms in that area

          That’s the crux of the discussion isn’t it?
          My belief is that we should be doing whatever we can to enhance both the range and depth of diversity in all areas of the Aotearoa and The World.

          So if we set ‘no loss of biodiversity’ as the benchmark for either intervening or not, then I really struggle to think of many areas of Aoteroa you could justify leaving introduced Predators and Browsers without elimination or very substantial control?

          Let me quote from ‘The New Wild’ and it’s vision of ‘native and alien species, happily getting along together, enriching our lives, maintaining ecosystems and recharging nature’s batteries.’
          That might be understandable in the context of, as Fred puts it, ‘supposedly malign invaders taking advantage of ecosystems that had already been wreaked by invaders’.

          But it is utter nonsense within the context of a unique ecosystem that is still substantially intact and capable of extensive regeneration of itself!

          There is no ‘happily getting along’ between our native Eco-systems that evolved for millions of years without mammals, and the mammals that have been introduced over the past few hundreds of years.
          ‘Balance’ will only be achieved when those introduced Mammals have destroyed everything that they find palatable.

          Where there was once an eco-system that was 95% unique to this part of the World alone, containing 1000’s of unique species of flora and fauna, they will be replaced with a limited range of species that already dominate across most of the World.

          I fail to see In what way would you call that ‘an improvement in the diversity of organisms in that area’?.
          Or in what way that would that be beneficial to the bio-diversity of NZ or The World as a whole?

          • Robert Guyton 19.1.1.1.1

            No worries, lost sheep, I too am busy. Let me see if I can address some of your concerns;
            Regarding the control of rodents; would you support the importation and release of a predatory mammal, if it was shown that they’d reduce rodent populations to a level that meant that our native birds would replenish their numbers back to almost what they were in pre-human times and meanwhile have no negative effects on any other native organism? You said:
            “My belief is that we should be doing whatever we can to enhance both the range and depth of diversity in all areas of the Aotearoa and The World.” so I’m guessing you’d consider the option. If that mammal also killed cows, would you still agree to release it? Just testing your waters to see how deep they flow.
            When you say,”biodiversity”, btw, do you mean native biodiversity? I ask because councils fall into the trap of thinking that way and it’s clearly not so simple as that.
            Setting “no loss of biodiversity”, as you describe, is an uninspiring benchmark, imo. We are already seriously in deficit with regards the range and spread of organisms, native and exotic, across New Zealand; you’ll have heard the term, “green desert”? The restoration of biological diversity here will take far more than bringing back the (few that we have left) birds through destroying the rodents that compete with them.
            With regard mammal pests only stopping when they have destroyed everything that they find palatable, I think you’ll find that populations slow down before that point, as a mechanism to remain viable themselves. It would be counter-productive to consume all of your resources; we humans seem determined to do that, but wild creatures seem to have mechanisms to prevent that.
            I think you have an overly romantic view of our future, in terms of the organisms that will be sharing our living space. I don’t believe that a return to a Putauhinu-like utopia is possible, except on small islands and even then, only when viewed with a wide-angle lens – macro will show it up as changed.

            • The lost sheep 19.1.1.1.1.1

              ‘would you support the importation and release of a predatory mammal,…’
              Nothing is more ‘nuanced’ than evolution.
              How long does it take for an Orchid and Moth to co-evolve a 30cm pitcher flower and 30cm tongue so that they can be mutually benefited and dependent?
              So no, I find it inconceivable that you could bring an entirely alien species into our unique eco-system and have it slot in as inoffensively as you suggest.
              The Papuan eagle that Flannery suggested preys on Birds and varied mammals in it’s native environment for instance. How are you going to bring it to Aotearoa and get it to limit itself to Possums Robert?
              Weasels and Stoats were released in Aotearoa to control Rabbits…that went well didn’t it!

              ‘When you say,”biodiversity”, btw, do you mean native biodiversity?’
              No. Our endemic species are a part of the worlds biodiversity?
              The world, and any area of NZ are more diverse through having unique endemic species present.
              A significant reduction or loss of their presence, and their replacement with species that are already dominant across vast areas, can only be a impoverishment of biodiversity.
              Can you tell me how it could be seen as an enrichment?

              ‘With regard mammal pests only stopping when they have destroyed everything that they find palatable, I think you’ll find that populations slow down before that point,…’.
              Well, no, Robert.
              And if the answer is no, it does completely undermine your theory that there can be a ‘happy balance’ between our taonga species and introduced mammals.

              The process of ‘slowing down’ you refer to happens when species co-evolve over a long period of time, and have the opportunity to let that ‘nuanced’ evolutionary arms race occur, so that specific predator and prey species are at an ongoing balance.
              In an alien environment, some species that have not co-evolved may find they have characteristics that replicate that balance.

              But the implication that newly introduced species will generally ‘decide’ to ‘slow down… as a mechanism to remain viable themselves’ is utter nonsense. You must know that?
              Did the Rats slow down on Taukihepa? Or the Lighthouse keepers Cat on Somes Island? Have Weasels decided to stop predating Kaka on The West Coast or decided that it’s time to stop eating Kiwi chicks? Does a Deer decide to bypass the last Broadleaf seedling in the anticipation of future harvest?
              Bollocks this slowing down is occurring!
              Can you produce some evidence for it?

              The reality is that our taonga flora and fauna continues to undergoing a widespread ongoing destruction, and the less we intervene, the greater will be the impoverishment of the bio-diversity of Aotearoa.

  20. North 20

    Calling Morrissey……..who the fuck is this guy on The Panel right now ? From World Vision apparently. Been everywhere and the Third World. Says he’s never met a “poor person”. And furnishes the example of an impoverished South American child prodigy as proof that there are in simple fact, no poor ???

    Positivity as opposed to doom-telling is great but talking like high-on-the-ministerial-hog Paula Bennett ??? Especially vexing when the teller doesn’t personally know a morsel of poverty. As do not I. Not hard to work out where ya wanna be though, is it ? Any trouble about that choice Mr World Vision take your ‘vicar’ tones and swap.

  21. Red Hand 21

    All the expense and thousands of dead pushing back at Germany in the 20th Century. Now they are the major European power and then this.

    http://www.newsweek.com/autumn-statement-2016-budget-philip-hammond-brexit-spending-524359

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  • Speech to Labour Party Congress 2020
    Tena koutou katoa  Nga tangata whenua o tenei rohe o Pōneke, tena koutou Nau mai, haere mai ki te hui a tau mo te roopu reipa Ko tatou!  Ko to tatou mana!  Ko to tatou kaupapa kei te kokiri whakamua  Tena koutou, tena koutou, tena tatou katoa   Welcome. I ...
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