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Open mike 25/07/2013

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, July 25th, 2013 - 103 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post. For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the link to Policy in the banner).

Step right up to the mike…

103 comments on “Open mike 25/07/2013 ”

  1. Descendant Of Sssmith 1

    Having moved away from a no-fault welfare system, to playing workers off against those on benefit (even though most of them have worked to pay for their own assistance and if they haven’t their parents have) we now move into the notion of deserving beneficiaries versus undeserving:


    I thought you wanted people whose kids were older to go to work?
    I thought you hated those who breed for a business? Inter-generational breeding must be a business right? Pop out a kid for yourself and another or Mum? Keep the family business going!

    I feel dirty typing those words and the right doesn’t need me portraying their arguments but I’d much rather grandparents raising grandchildren make a stand against the marginalising of all beneficiaries and understand that any issue with their own particular niche (lobby) group is as result of the attack on the whole system.

    In suggesting their group should be treated differently than anyone else raising a child they just buy into the whole deserving / undeserving concept.

    Anyone raising a child is deserving of support to do so.

    • AsleepWhileWalking 1.1

      It seems the media is “OK” sending those mother bitches back to work…they brought it upon themselves! But for anyone else DOING THE EXACT SAME JOB they appear sympathetic. Truly sickening how this country places different levels of acceptability depending on who is doing the raising.

    • weka 1.2

      Is this the same grandparents’ group that a few months back was holding hands with Paula Bennet and smiling out from the pages of the media? I seem to remember discussion on ts about it only being a matter of time before Bennett stabbed them in the back.

      Yep, QoT wrote a post about it

      When Paula Bennett is positive about a group of beneficiaries, be suspicious

    • Mary 1.3

      There are also all the cases where benefits are cut when they shouldn’t be due to an over-rigourous application of the rules borne out of all the excitement whipped up within Work and Income by all the “get tough on beneficiaries” ranting from the right. It’s easy for Bennett to come out and say this shouldn’t be happening in any particular individual case but the same problems are happening all over the country and never get fixed. Tell the likes of Bennett about it and she’ll say “I need individual cases”. Leaving the majority of widespread failure to get things right suit Bennett and their agenda.

  2. Jenny 2

    The global war against humanity by the fossil fuel companies and government quislings around the world heats up. (literally)

    Scientists have confidently predicted that the permanent ice shelf of the high arctic will completely disappear during the Northern summer, from 2054 to 2058 on.

    Good News for the Fossil Fuel criminals……

    …….melting in this area would improve access to minerals on the ocean bed, increase fishing and create ice-free shipping lanes.

    New Scientist

    But, good news for the oil companies, is bad news for everyone else.

    Previous work has estimated that more than a trillion tonnes of methane lie under the shelf, trapped inside lattices of ice known as hydrates, at depths as shallow as 20 metres. Concern about a possible eruption has grown since 2010, when research cruises over the shelf by Natalia Shakhova and Igor Semiletov, both now at the University of Alaska at Fairbanks, found plumes of methane as much as a kilometre wide bubbling to the surface……

    But we won’t have to wait for 40 years for this to happen.

    The pair calculated that a release of 50 billion tonnes would be possible within a decade, through known areas of melting and geological faults. Since methane is a greenhouse gas 25 times as potent as carbon dioxide, such a scenario would trigger a “climate catastrophe”, they say, increasing the methane content of the planet’s atmosphere twelve-fold, and raising temperatures by 1.3 ˚C……

    ……. A release of 50 billion tonnes of methane would bring forward by 15 to 35 years the date at which global temperature rise exceeds 2 ˚C above pre-industrial levels, the model shows, with most of the damage in the poorer parts of Africa, Asia and South America. The largest costs envisaged include loss of crops to heat and drought, coping with sea level rise and worsening tropical storms.

    New Scientist

    To bring on this catastrophe the New Zealand government and state is mobilising all the forces it can. A harsh crackdown, aided by broad spectrum surveilliance of the general population. From just merely arresting and fining anti arctic drilling protesters like Lucy Lawless. With harsh new legislation enabled targetting protesters, the New Zealand state will begin jailing anti-mining and drilling protesters for two years and fining them $50 thousand dollars each. If they refuse or unable to pay the fine they could be held in jail for much longer than two years. This could see a huge rise the in the permanent number of political prisoners in this country.

    Will our opposition parties speak up. Or will they keep their silence?

  3. Dammit, Jenny !

    What would you have us do ?

  4. North 4

    Dear Old Boardroom Trout Fran O’Sullivan……..in overdrive and sucking cock !


    • Tiger Mountain 4.1

      Well sometimes an apparent crudity conveys more than a lengthy earnest essay.

    • Santi 4.2

      A balanced article on the level-headed Mr English, whose economic performance during the crisis cannot be faulted. All power to him.

      • drevil 4.2.1

        He’s no David Shearer !

      • tinfoilhat 4.2.2

        English is perhaps the most vacuous trougher of all amongst the National party, what has he achieved during his time in politics apart from filling his and his brothers bank accounts.

      • travellerev 4.2.3

        It doe doesn’t it! 🙂

      • muzza 4.2.4

        Santi, if you believe the words you write, as if it was not obvious enough already, you are a troollip!

        English has no understanding of basic economic concepts, or finance, and has shown that over and over again with his bumbling language, while he attempts to convey the messages he is is given to repeat!

        Add this his enjoyment of fragrant ripping off the public purse, and you have the makings of someone who will be remembered in the 2 lines of the history books, as an incompetent crook!

        As for Fran, she is in the position she is in, because, like Hooton et al, she is a paid agent, paid to speak against the interest of NZ, and it’s peoples!

        I would ask you a question, Santi, but you have shown yourself incapable of answering, even the most simple questions, which would account for why you’re enamoured by the performance of English!

      • yeshe 4.2.5

        Santi — is it morning on your planet or a different time of day ? Do you have a 24 hour cycle like we do ?

      • Rosie 4.2.6

        Groan. Not you again panties.

    • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 4.3


    • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 4.4


    • halfcrown 4.5

      Well fucking said as always North

    • David H 4.6

      No I didn’t need that…. North

    • Draco T Bastard 4.7

      Well, it does show the sociopathy of our CEOs. They think that this government is doing well while the majority of people are worse off while they get tax cuts.

    • Jilly Bee 4.8

      I started to read the Mood of the Boardroom supplement attached to Granny Herald this morning – totally agree North, and the rest was just as sad and depressing. Got my day off to a pretty bad start. Some of the quotes attributed to these CEOs were simply disgusting.

    • Saarbo 4.9

      Fran is hopeless and exemplifies why New Zealand is still so reliant on Primary Industry exports, she, like our CEO’s lacks imagination, brains and creativity. The only thing English has done is hold back spending, which has contracted the economy so that our interest rates have stayed low and as the economy has come back to normal post GFC, back into surplus. Any monkey could have done what he has done. To Fran, the poor and vulnerable don’t count, they are irrelevant.

      What a horrible, dumb and unproductive cow she is…if she was a real cow she would have been sent to the works long ago

      • Draco T Bastard 4.9.1

        The only thing English has done is hold back spending

        Nope, if he’d done that then we wouldn’t be looking at our highest levels of government debt ever.

  5. Morrissey 5

    Mediocrity Watch

    It’s difficult to stand out as especially stupid in the desperately mediocre world of New Zealand radio. But listeners to (or sufferers of) Radio NZ National have over the last few months probably noticed the increasing frequency of one Susie Ferguson, formerly of the BBC and ITN. Ferguson is yet another Irish voice on Radio New Zealand National; her Ulster inflections provide a complement to Noelle McCarthy’s Cork accent. But while Noelle McCarthy has a high degree of urbanity and sophistication, and obviously reads and thinks a great deal, the same cannot be said for Susie Ferguson. Her interviews stand out for their lack of empathy, or basic understanding of an issue; her style is often confrontational and downright rude.

    For this morning’s show, the producers of Morning Report gave her an easy assignment: interview someone about the minor furore that has blown up about the film Maniac, starring Elijah Woods. This Festival movie has been bizarrely attacked by the New Zealand Chief Censor. In his wisdom, he has decreed that it can be shown only to Film Festivals and tertiary study classes. The producers no doubt trusted that even Susie Ferguson would be capable of getting a few straight, even interesting, comments from Neil Foley, of the distributor Monster Films. But no, even that simple assignment was beyond her; she succeeded in flabbergasting Foley, and no doubt any sentient listeners, by asking one of the stupidest questions of the year, not counting any press conference involving Television One’s Andrew Saville.

    Neil Foley explained to Ferguson that, while the violence is graphic, it is supposed to be from the serial killer’s point of view, and that this is an established horror convention. Ferguson, though just did not get it….

    SUSIE FERGUSON: If, as you say, this has all been done before, why do it all again?
    NEIL FOLEY: [snorts in derision] You could say that about any film. These are conventions.

    The rest of the interview went nowhere. Susie Ferguson used to work for the BBC. That tells you a lot about that organization.

    • richard 5.1

      I think you are being overly harsh on Ms Ferguson. Her interview with Helen Kelly last week was one of the best I have heard on National Radio. She didn’t but in and cut Helen off during her answers. As well, she listened to what Helen said and asked the next question accordingly. A really refreshing change.

    • Te Reo Putake 5.2

      “her Ulster inflections provide a complement to Noelle McCarthy’s Cork accent.”

      Isn’t she Scottish?

      • McFlock 5.2.1

        hush now, with that mistrust, it’s an accurate transcript…

        • Morrissey

          hush now, with that mistrust, it’s an accurate transcript…

          It is, actually, in this case. Even this writer, i.e. moi, isn’t going to blow it with a mere two-line transcript. Where I get myself into trouble is when I start condensing thirty minutes of dull inanity into twenty or thirty lines of Neil Simon-quality dialogue.

          And, of course, whether she’s from Scotland or Ulster doesn’t affect what she said.

          • McFlock

            it does tend to suggest that you don’t always accurately interpret what you hear, though.

            • Morrissey

              it does tend to suggest that you don’t always accurately interpret what you hear, though.

              Good point. Though I’m sure I’m not the only one to have mistaken Susie Ferguson’s for an Ulster accent.

          • felix

            “It is, actually, in this case. Even this writer, i.e. moi, isn’t going to blow it with a mere two-line transcript.”

            Except you did blow it. These words you wrote are not the actual words spoken. Some you have made up. Some you have omitted.

            And the “snorts in derision” is entirely imaginary. If anything he chuckles.

            • McFlock

              [snorts in derision] much lols

              • Morrissey

                [snorts in derision] much lols

                Poor Susie Ferguson did not laugh out loud. She was clearly mortified by Neil Foley’s contemptuous reaction.

            • Morrissey

              Except you did blow it. These words you wrote are not the actual words spoken. Some you have made up. Some you have omitted.

              You, of course, will provide us with a verbatim transcript, so that you can back up your allegation.

              And the “snorts in derision” is entirely imaginary.
              I’ve had to publicly call you out only the other day for your propensity to overstate your case. “Entirely imaginary” is of the same extreme order as your claim that Chris Trotter did not deliver a windy lecture about the need to respect lynch law in the Deep South. When you overstate your case, felix, it renders suspect everything else that you say.

              If anything he chuckles.
              You have in your previous sentence just claimed that it was “entirely imaginary”. Now you have, carelessly, invalidated that claim. I will for the sake of civility do you the favour of conceding that Neil Foley chuckled derisively at Susie Ferguson’s foolish question—but I’m sure anyone who heard it will recognize my rendition of his reaction is more accurate and honest than yours.

              • felix

                1. I don’t need to provide a transcript Mozz, the audio is available to anyone who cares and anyone who listens to it will be rewarded with the knowledge that it does not match your transcript.

                This is doubly disturbing because in your comment above you assured us all that in spite of your previous lapses of concentration, errors of omission, inventions, flights of fancy, misquotes, and extremely liberal use of artistic license, this time you’d finally got one right.

                And you still hadn’t.

                2. Trotter didn’t say what you claimed he said, and not in the context you claimed. Again the audio is available to all so I’m not going to play silly games with you.

                “need to respect the lynch law”?? FFS do you ever read your own words before you post them? He said nothing of the sort.

                3. I’ve invalidated nothing. It’s not my fault you don’t know the difference between a derisive snort and a hearty chuckle.

                “I’m sure anyone who heard it”

                I’m not convinced that you actually go back and listen after you write your impressions. If you did, you’d never be here defending their accuracy like the black knight.

                • Morrissey

                  1. I don’t need to provide a transcript Mozz, the audio is available to anyone who cares and anyone who listens to it will be rewarded with the knowledge that it does not match your transcript.
                  You keep saying that, possibly in the hope nobody will actually check. I stand by the substance of what I wrote; there might well be the odd “um” I have either missed or gratuitously inserted, but what I wrote, whether or not it technically qualifies as a “transcription”, was accurate and fair.

                  This is doubly disturbing because in your comment above you assured us all that in spite of your previous lapses of concentration, errors of omission, inventions, flights of fancy, misquotes, and extremely liberal use of artistic license,
                  Your language is extreme and prosecutorial; once again you have chosen to go out on a limb with your carping and trivial allegations. You know perfectly well by now what the intention of my transcripts is: it is to catch the zeitgeist of the often foolish and sometimes depraved stuff that surrounds us on the air. Do I always get it word-perfect? No, of course not—I have no BASF tapes currently operable, and my shorthand is imperfect. You choose to focus on that and make an issue of it; I stand by my interpretation of Foley’s reaction to Susie Ferguson’s utterly stupid question; you may choose to pretend he “chuckles” indulgently. Such cockeyed generosity is not surprising in light of your indulgent view of Trotter’s fustian oratory on behalf of that Florida lynch-mob.

                  …this time you’d finally got one right. And you still hadn’t.
                  I got it exactly right. You are the one who claimed that Mr. Foley’s derisive snorts were “entirely imaginary” and then in the very next sentence quibbled about the description of those snorts: “If anything he chuckles.”

                  2. Trotter didn’t say what you claimed he said,
                  He said it in the way I showed it. I didn’t get his immortal words down perfectly, but he DID deliver an absurdly self-important lecture to his inferiors (that’s clearly the way he thinks of most people) about the need to “respect” the decision of that Florida jury. If anything, I modified the extreme pomposity of his delivery.

                  …and not in the context you claimed.
                  The others on the Panel all expressed disdain and horror at that obscene travesty; Trotter decided he’d deliver a lecture about the need to respect any jury decision, no matter how harebrained or unjust it might appear to be. That was the context; are you trying to suggest something else was going on in that studio? What “context” did we miss?

                  Again the audio is available to all…
                  Then you will provide a transcript of the bit that shows Trotter did NOT deliver a windy and self-important caution to his fellow Panelists.

                  …so I’m not going to play silly games with you.
                  That’s a bit late, I’m afraid. You are playing silly games, and so far you have not done very well at all. Putting up that word-perfect transcript might help your case.

                  “need to respect the lynch law”?? FFS do you ever read your own words before you post them? He said nothing of the sort.
                  Of course Trotter did not use those words. But that’s exactly what he meant.

                  3. I’m not convinced that you actually go back and listen after you write your impressions. If you did, you’d never be here defending their accuracy like the black knight.
                  You are correct there, felix.

                  • sockpuppet

                    Oh well spruiked Morrissey !

                    What wit….. I’ll wager you were the doyen of the debating crowd back in the day.

  6. Lanthanide 6

    Documentary on Helen Clark was on TV3 last night at 9:30, covers her entry into politics, up to winning the 1999 election and becoming the first elected female PM. Has heaps of archive film footage, interviews with Helen, Jim Bolger, Jim Anderton, Roger Douglas and others.

    Available on demand here: http://www.tv3.co.nz/DOCUMENTARY-Helen-Clark-Part-1/tabid/3692/articleID/94222/MCat/2955/Default.aspx

    There’s a 2nd part that covers her prime ministership next week.

    • Morrissey 6.1

      Quite well done, and interesting. The only disturbing part of it came when her dad was proudly listing all the movers and shakers Helen mixes with. “She’s got contacts all over the world,” he beamed. “Um, Blair, Gordon Brown, uh, Clinton. She knows them all.”

      The poor old fellow seemed to approve of his daughter being involved with those blood-soaked criminals.

      • muzza 6.1.1

        Did they mention Clark’s staunchly marxist ideological beliefs?

        Well, yes of course they did, her dads mention of the contacts, Blair/Brown, more than enough!

      • TheContrarian 6.1.2

        Yes, how silly it is for the leader of the nation to have contact with the heads of NZ’s major trading partners.

        • Morrissey

          Yes, how silly it is for the leader of the nation to have contact with the heads of NZ’s major trading partners.

          They are criminals, every one of them. They should all be in prison. At least Clark, as vacillating as she was, had the courage to speak out, however guardedly, against the crimes of the first two.

          • North

            Yeah well…….my mother (born 1918 – first job at 13 in a greengrocer’s in Onehunga) used to proudly cluck her lovely Old Labour self to sleep after I’d call “on tolls” from Wellington to relate my often ginned-up late-night progress office to office through the corridors of Parliament commencing early 70s. Mike Moore, Roger Douglas, Bassett et al……….look how those pricks turned out !

            That’s parents for you. Completely understandable. Thank Christ it took that woman’s son only a decade and a half to stop being a slimey little Soymin Brudges wankfest !

            • sockpuppet

              Ah what refreshing prose, both Morrissey and North together and firing on all cylinders all we need now is erudite Prof Longhair to join the conflagration and one’s life is complete.

              • Morrissey

                Ah what refreshing prose, both Morrissey and North together and firing on all cylinders all we need now is erudite Prof Longhair to join the conflagration and one’s life is complete.

                Hmmmmmm…. Just what are you allegitating there, “sockpuppet”?

                • sockpuppet

                  Nothing more than that this fine site could only benefit from such contributors continuing ….. nay increasing their wondrous commentary.

                  ………. or perhaps …..dare we say it one of them starting their own blog perhaps funded under the fine auspices of daisycutter sports ?

                  • Rosetinted

                    What about you getting your own blog. Are you a forerunner of RWNJs we are going to ‘enjoy’ in the run up to the election, putting your tainted little toes in a left wing pond to gauge how warm it is. Back home, nearer to hell it’s really warm, you probably would be more comfortable there.

    • Tamati 6.2

      Enjoyed it, although was a bit superficial. Guess it has to cater for a mainstream television audience, no just politicos inside the beltway.

      Would love to have heard more dirt about her time in opposition and the issues and events of the day. The older footage was pretty interesting.

      • Lanthanide 6.2.1

        Yeah, same. I think it was a product of trying to cram such a long period of time into a single episode.

        If the whole series was 4 shows rather than 2, they could devote 2 episodes to the early years, and 2 episodes to her PMship, and that’d be a good amount of depth I think.

        • Tamati

          Yeah, two hours is far too short for a Prime Minister.

          Thought the whole U.N. thing was pretty pointless too.

      • Anne 6.2.2

        Would love to have heard more dirt about her time in opposition and the issues and events of the day. The older footage was pretty interesting.

        I haven’t had a chance to watch it yet, but I might be able to fill in some of the dirt prior to… and in the first three years of her time in opposition. Lprent can probably fill in the rest. Will watch it this evening. Thanks for link Lanthanide.

        • Anne

          John Key’s comments amused me. “She lived and breathed politics 24 hrs a day.” She no more lived and breathed politics 24/7 than he does now.

          Jane Clifton’s comment re- the death stare. I was the recipient once when she was still just the candidate for Mt. Albert. At a campaign meeting I decided to play the role of devil’s advocate to see how she would handle it. Never again.

          There is a little known aspect to that candidate selection that Helen Clark won. During the long lead up to the selection meeting there were two local factions. One faction supported Helen Clark and another supported the electorate chairman, Keith Elliott. It seemed like the two groups were roughly equal in support. But a third faction appeared about two months before the scheduled meeting and they were pushing for Malcolm Douglas – Roger Douglas’ brother. Malcolm was a young lawyer, personable and articulate. The hope was Helen and Keith would cancel each other out and Malcolm would come through the middle. They conducted a campaign that was largely under the radar and quite dirty in content. (Won’t go into details here.) It could have succeeded if it wasn’t for the fact that Helen made such an outstanding speech on the night, nobody else got a look-in.

          Years later most of that third faction ended up in ACT and I don’t think they ever forgave Helen for giving their candidate a thrashing.

    • just saying 6.3

      Thanks for the link Lanthanide.
      I found the doco really interesting, and to be honest, I had kind of hoped that when I opened TS this morning I’d find that one of our wonderful writers had written a review. There were many things that I’d be interested to know others’ views on.

      I was also chilled when Clark’s father proudly proclaimed his daughter’s “friendships” with those particular culprits. But it’s worth remembering that family loyalty and paternal pride aside, Clark’s Dad was and is an arch conservative and that list probably represents leaders that he has great respect for, and may not reflect HC’s attitudes. I’d certainly like to think not.

      It seemed to me that Anderton was strongly suggesting that Clark was a social dmocrat and that her actual politico/economic views were more aligned to the Alliance policy than to Labour’s.

      • Anne 6.3.1

        Clark’s Dad was and is an arch conservative and that list probably represents leaders that he has great respect for, and may not reflect HC’s attitudes. I’d certainly like to think not.

        He WAS an arch conservative just saying. Indeed back in the 1970s he and Helen had many rows which became so heated that Helen’s mother banned all talk of politics. They were estranged for a number of years, but when she became the candidate for Mt.Albert her father swallowed his pride and her parents’ wholly supported her. They eventually joined the Labour Party and became enthusiastic members. That was my understanding anyway.

  7. Santi 7

    But I love her accent. Leave Susie alone.

    • Morrissey 7.1

      I don’t mind Hillary Clinton’s accent. It’s what she says that horrifies me. Similarly, I don’t mind Susie Ferguson’s accent..

    • Morrissey 7.2

      Fair comment, Santi, but please click on the “Reply” button at the bottom right of the comment to which you are replying.

      • yeshe 7.2.1

        I think it’s a different time of day on Santi’s planet .. maybe the lights haven’t come on yet ?

  8. Morrissey 8

    Mediocrity Watch
    No. 2: GAVIN GRAY

    “King Charles had his head cut off, but there have never been any problems associated with the name King George. … The couple don’t like conformity.”

    London correspondent Gavin Gray, speaking about the naming of George Alex Louis, Prince of Cambridge, NewstalkZB, 7:10 a.m.

    Mediocrity Watch aims to keep you informed of—or, to quote the epically mediocre Simon Dallow, to be “right across”—the least professional, most insulting, shoddiest journalism from all over the world, but especially New Zealand. It is produced by DeakerWatch®, a division of Daisycutter Sports Inc.

    See also….
    No. 1 Susie Ferguson: “If, as you say, this has all been done before, why do it all again?”

    Open mike 25/07/2013

    • yeshe 8.1

      Not sure they thought through the initials though .. Prince GAL ? hmmmmmm

      (Actually, George Louis Alexander Michael would have been great fun gifting us .. Prince GLAM !!)

      • Morrissey 8.1.1

        YESHE: Not sure they thought through the initials though .. Prince GAL ? hmmmmmm

        JIM MORA: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!

        NOELLE McCARTHY: He he he he he he he!

        JOCK ANDERSON: Hrrumph!

        YESHE: Actually, George Louis Alexander Michael would have been great fun gifting us .. Prince GLAM !!

        JIM MORA: Hur, hur, hur, hur! “Prince Glam.” That’s very good!

      • Treetop 8.1.2

        GLAW means rain in Welsh. The W is for Wales, which is the surname. Eventually the bubba will be the Prince of Wales.

        • Treetop

          I realise the initials are GALW and I got distracted by them being changed by yeshe.

  9. joe90 9

    For those who’re being driven quietly around the bend by a particularly gross earworm – here’s the antidote: (nsfw)

    Ask first
    No way to know I want it
    No way to know I want it
    Unless I say I want it
    Ask first
    Cause if you grab me
    I’ll get nasty
    I’ll break your fucking knees

  10. Pete 10

    What kind of perverse logic is this?
    Brian Fallow: China’s slowdown may be good for NZ

    When China slows down, its demand for minerals drops and Australia will suffer. If our two largest trading partners are faring poorly, then it is not going to be good for NZ.

    • Colonial Viper 10.1

      China’s slowdown is bad for our finances but good for our real environment. Its also good for China’s real environment. Less consumption, less energy use, less GHGs.

      That’s the paradox we’ve locked ourselves into, in this current system.

    • Tamati 10.2

      Because in a slowing Chinese economy, the Chinese will cut back on building new factories, not on buying their children baby milk. (By slowdown they mean economic growth of 7% rather than 10%)

      A slowdown in Australia would be of more concern, however every year they are becoming less and less dependant as China becomes more important.

    • Draco T Bastard 10.3

      If we had our economy rationalised it wouldn’t really matter what the economies of our trading partners were doing as they’d only be a minor part of our economy.

    • Draco T Bastard 11.1

      Yep. I find it amazing that the know that they’ll be dropping 35 workers before they’ve finished the review. This would indicate that the review was nothing but validation for the predetermined loss of jobs.

    • blue leopard 11.2

      This will be necessary in response to the reforms.

      There will be some WINZ staff who know it is inhumane to place added pressure on jobless people to find work that isn’t out there.

      They will need to be culled.

      • yeshe 11.2.1

        Does anyone know anything about who the contractors are who will receive many thousands of dollars from WINZ for placing ex beneficiaries in work ? So peculiar imho.

  11. Morrissey 12

    Jami-Lee Ross meets his nemesis
    David Shearer keelhauls a National backbench head-nodder

    Back Benchers, Prime TV, Wednesday 24 July 2013, 10:40 p.m.
    Politicians: David Shearer (Labour), Jami-Lee Ross (National), Russell Norman (Green).

    There was a real energy discernible in tonight’s program, an “Auckland Special” filmed in the Britomart Country Club. I was impressed by the performances of Len Brown, Ngarimu Blair, David Shearer and Russell Norman. I was deeply unimpressed by Jami-Lee Ross and the glib, weaselly Wallace Chapman. And viewers of the program were introduced to an unpleasant new phenomenon, albeit one that will not last: the moronic Moonie-like disciples of right wing restaurant-fixer John Palino.

    The program began with a diverting little travelogue of some of Auckland’s lesser-known spots. Hosts Chapman and Christie were entertaining and informative. A little later, Ngarimu Blair wittily upbraided Damian Christie for using only Pākehā names instead of the original Māori names; Christie riposted quite well: “I did say Rangitoto though!”

    Mayor Len Brown was relaxed, affable and confident. And, surprisingly and most gratifyingly, so was Labour leader David Shearer. He was at ease and in command throughout the program; in fact he was likable. He did not stammer or forget what he was saying, and he spoke clearly. When he smiled, it was a genuine smile, not the anxious forced rictus grin we have seen too often. Late in the program, he provided the highlight of the evening when he pulled rank and firmly squashed National lightweight Jami-Lee Ross.

    Jami-Lee Ross was exactly how he always is: smarmy, nasty, arrogant and bumptious. But worst of all—and this proved to be his undoing—he was disrespectful. Throughout the hour, he referred to Shearer as “this guy”, and to Shearer and Norman as “these guys”. To compound this display of offhand disrespect, every sentence he uttered started with “Look”. I was impressed with the way Shearer handled himself in this difficult situation; not only did he have to deal with Ross’s vexatious and ridiculous comments, but he also had to contend with Chapman’s offensive and partial behavior. While Chapman’s childishness was something he just had to put up with, he did not have to let Ross go unchallenged. Twice during the early part of the program, he effectively refuted Ross’s nasty comments, then at the end he put Ross firmly in his place—right at the bottom of the pecking order.

    Russell Norman was urbane and convincing as always, especially considering that he, like Shearer, was constantly being undermined by the rodentine Wallace Chapman. Idiotically, Chapman tried to taunt Norman about being Australian, and about being brought up in Brisbane.

    I am increasingly concerned by the behavior of Chapman. I have already commented on his pathetic behavior on TV1’s Good Morning show [1]. Earlier this year he also acted as a guest host for some ostensibly serious discussion on Radio NZ National; due to his antics the program was rendered utterly banal and more or less a waste of time. Tonight, he decided to pander to a sizable coterie of loud, drunken ACT, National and Palino groupies, who occasionally managed to rouse themselves to bellow out moronic right wing slogans, like “Who’s gonna PAY for it?” At one point in the program, Russell Norman was talking about a rational transport policy for Auckland. Suddenly Chapman interrupted him….

    WALLACE CHAPMAN: It sounds like a Green Party PIPE DREAM! [mimics smoking a joint]
    NATIONAL SUPPORTERS: Ha ha ha ha ha ha! That’s right!

    A little later, Chapman again tried to play to those drunken yobbos….

    WALLACE CHAPMAN: How many people used public transport to go to work today? [Many hands go up all over the venue] Not very many.
    DAMIAN CHRISTIE: Actually it’s about fifty-fifty.

    Another thing that many people must have noticed was that Chapman let Jami-Lee Ross talk on and on, often making little sense, without interrupting him. In stark contrast, whenever Russell Norman or David Shearer spoke, Chapman rang a bell to stop him.

    Halfway through the evening, Chapman poked his microphone in front of Ngarimu Blair, who announced a new Ngati Whatua-run housing scheme. This was quite a coup for the program; Mayor Brown seemed ecstatic about it, and so did the audience. (The ACT-National-Palino morons were silent—they had nothing to contribute, not even the normal vacuous snickering that they indulged in for the rest of the time.)

    After that major piece of excitement, the intellectual and moral tone of the evening took a precipitous dive: Chapman interviewed a Palino supporter. The young man had amassed over $100,000 in savings; this pointless piece of information was apparently supposed to impress us. It certainly impressed Wallace Chapman, who might have been interviewing a Nobel Prize winner rather than a complacent rich kid who is dumb enough to think John Palino knows anything more than how to organize the interior decoration and menu for a small cafeteria.

    After that, it’s back to the politicians. Jami-Lee Ross makes a swingeing personal attack on Shearer, who is about to thrash him for a third time when Chapman cuts him off. See, he has a really important issue to go onto….

    WALLACE CHAPMAN: What we want to know is this: Are Aucklanders just JAFAs?

    For the next five excruciating minutes, we see video of Chapman approaching people on Auckland streets and asking them: “Are Aucklanders wankers?” He goes up to a couple of young girls and asks, “Are Aucklanders UP THEMSELVES?” This terrible, witless segment seems to go on forever, but eventually, mercifully, it is time for the Quiz. This is won by David Shearer, but what it will be remembered for is the way he dispatched Jami-Lee Ross to the boundary straight after it….

    WALLACE CHAPMAN: And the winner of the Back Benchers Quiz is DAVID SHEARER!

    ….[Good natured applause from the crowd, including the drunken ACT-NAtional-palino contingent]….

    JAMI-LEE ROSS: One competition he’s won.

    ….[Silence, and a slight pause]….

    DAVID SHEARER: This guy is sad. You’ve been sitting next to Chris Finlayson way too long, I think.

    The laughter is probably ringing in poor Jami-Lee Ross’s ears even now.

    [1] http://thestandard.org.nz/open-mike-08062013/#comment-645516

    • Santi 12.1

      The whole program is unwatchable stuff, bollocks.

      • Morrissey 12.1.1

        The whole program is unwatchable stuff, bollocks.

        It is, largely, I agree. But the sight of David Shearer hanging, drawing and quartering that snide National moron last night made for great television.

  12. bad12 13

    ”If people on benefits want to access Working for Families payments they should get a job”, those words the reason i couldn’t watch the ‘Helen years’ on the TV,

    Those words which after years of being a staunch Labour supporter through even the abuses of Sir(spit)Roger Douglas inflicted upon us all lead to my abandonment of that party,

    On a lighter note tho i did have a watch of ‘Backbenchers Auckland edition’ featuring leaders Dave Shearer, Russell Norman and what’s best described as a ‘nasty piece of work’ National’s Jamie Lee Ross who spent the entire time of the show making snide comments to both Shearer and Norman out of the side of His mouth like some b grade movie actor in a cheap American gangsta flick,

    Any public bar that i have ever mis-spent too many hours in subjected to such snivelling, snide, vindictive drivel, Ross would have ended the night prone on the floor attempting to extract the silver spoon from a badly broken jaw,

    Shearer tho was almost eloquent to the point where i imagined another 6 or 8 half-pints of the brown stuff would have had the bloke waxing positively lyrical, His last bit tho, a barracking Parliamentary style shouting of support for the way under-payed cleaning staff of the nation came across as forced, shouting at the TV camera just not a good look,

    Russell Norman looked like he wanted to be somewhere else, anywhere else except that close to National’s Ross and i am sure had the show gone on for any longer we all might have been privy to an exhibition of Russell tossing up His dinner,

    During the ad breaks i did a runner over to Maori TV’s Native affairs, missed earlier in the week, and got treated to a piece of theater which knowing the ‘actors’ was a great joy to behold,

    Native Affairs was doing a piece on Wellington’s efforts to curb begging in the City, and although i didn’t catch all of this piece appeared to be in the vein of ‘woe are these poor homeless people’,

    This little comic narrative unfolded into ‘the homeless couple’ being interviewed, first Her, in words barely intelligent to the average human babbling on about nothing in particular, (believe me you fully understand Her when She is after a cigarette, and the abuse that follows should you ignore Her),

    Then Him, babbling away about some long ago day, then a quick switch along with some crocodile tears that wouldn’t quite flow barely able to tell the camera about His war service,(well not quite His, i know who’s war service He was borrowing for the event),

    Yeah i know these two well, He begs along Courtney Place, ”please sir have you got a dollar”, an 1800’s London street urchin could not have mustered a better tone of forlorn supplication,

    Meanwhile She is sitting in the pokies bar attached to a well known strip club and brothel owned by a pair of brothers known nation-wide, feeding the machine, when He arrives back having done a circuit of Courtney Place ”please sir have you got a dollar”, She gets a break for a ciggy while He baby sits that nights pokie machine of choice,

    LOLZ, this little show goes on all night, most nights and when these two destitute beggars finish the night they catch a taxi home,

    Maori television tho have scored a coup in discovering these two, they would make an excellent unscripted comedy routine, give them 30 minutes and tell them the topic and i reckon they would have audiences in fits of laughter, a huge waste of talent ‘begging’ on Wellington’s streets….

  13. joe90 14

    Wonder how the defence force heads will react in private to Abbott’s proposal.


  14. Draco T Bastard 16

    NZ Prime Minister facing prosecution for spying

    New Zealand’s Prime Minister John Key is facing prosecution in court after it was revealed his department spied on more than 80 New Zealanders illegally.

    Haven’t seen it anywhere else yet but it’s going to be interesting if true.

    • Santi 16.1

      The guy pursuing Key is an obnoxious litigant whose chances are nil. Just a person seeking publicity for no other reason than enjoying his name out there.
      After losing I hope he is asked to pay costs. That would teach him.

      • McFlock 16.1.1

        Interestingly enough, while he might be a jerk McCready can boast one or two successes in this area. About as good a score against MPs as the police prosecutor, anyway.

        And it does seem that an illegal interception did indeed take place.
        So really, it comes down to whether Key as minister was responsible for the actions of his department.

      • bad12 16.1.2

        Sounds like a top bloke to me, Slippery IS the minister in charge of our spy agencies and ‘accountability and responsibility’ would strongly suggest as the Minister in Charge it is the Prime Minister who must carry the can for His agents illegal spying upon New Zealand citizens…

      • RedBaronCV 16.1.3

        Try reading Judge Mills in the Wellington District Court judgement giving the go ahead to prosecute John Banks.

        It is not the character of the person making the allegation but the quality of the allegation itself. Fancy legal way of saying play the ball and not the man.

        Please Santi do try to understand the difference.

        Actually he’s starting to look like not such a bad bloke.

    • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 16.2

      Isn’t that the fucking nutty fraudster accountant who sued Mallard and is suing Banks?

      He really needs a hobby.

      • McFlock 16.2.1

        Yeah – and won against mallard (or at least got a reduced plea, rather than being out on his ear and declared vexatious).

      • Draco T Bastard 16.2.2

        Yes it is and it seems that he’s got one – holding our corrupt politicians to account.

    • Murray Olsen 16.3

      I wish him luck. I hope I can find some way to contribute. In a worthwhile democracy, the Police would be prosecuting Key for this.

  15. idlegus 19

    according to a reid research poll when asked ‘who do you trust, john key or kim dotcom’ 52% believed kim dotcom & 34% believed john key, & bear in mind this same poll has national on 47% !!! on tv3 news…

  16. mickysavage 20

    I am at the Auckland anti GCSB and the Mt Albert hall is packed. There must be 600 people here and the crowd is spilling out into the foyer. The sense of anger is palpable. Thomas Beagle has put the case very well. If the Government wants to take away our rights it should justify this and it has not done this.

  17. Rosetinted 21

    I saw this in an email. Does the Benefit woman know about anything to do with the real world?
    Hon. Paula Bennetts statements that ‘feminism is out of fashion’ and ‘out of step with modern times’ are not true, except for a certain class.

  18. McFlock 22

    Well this is a stunning article. Shelley Bridgeman writing about how she was caught short at the supermarket and had to choose between the hummus and the filled pasta, so now she has an insight into how the other 99.5% live.

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