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Open mike 25/08/2011

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, August 25th, 2011 - 58 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…

58 comments on “Open mike 25/08/2011 ”

  1. logie97 1

    So it is true then – The Government’s largesse with tax payers’ money will go to the rich first. Not surprised at that.

    However doesn’t this confirm that the planners are locked in 19th century mindsets.
    I would have thought that the digital world could completely change how we organise ourselves.

    (QWERTY is a mechanical invention and now effectively redundant.
    The “alphabetical” order of arranging the world is a mechanical thing – the instant digital search available renders that redundant.)

    And so with UFB roll out. Why work from the City out? Why not start at the geographical centre of Auckland – probably a street in Ellerslie? OR even more equitable, start in a depressed suburb of Auckland and allow it to blossom and become a “centre of excellence”.


  2. logie97 2

    Joky Hen’s basic English fails the standards. It’s back to school for John. If he said as reported on Stuff …

    “Obviously if the Australian media are not accredited then they’ll [RWC] have less exposure and less opportunities and that would be very disappointing,” he said last night.

    Less exposure and fewer opportunities, John Boy. Add that to your regular use of ‘There’s lots of” instead of “There are lots of”… tch tch.

    • Vicky32 2.1

      Less exposure and fewer opportunities, John Boy. Add that to your regular use of ‘There’s lots of” instead of “There are lots of”… tch tch.

      Added to my horror file! (I have a language blog for ESOL students, where I list common errors they must avoid… ) I have heard reporters on RNZ says “she leaped” (should be leapt) and my recent favourite “a orange” to use an example, what’s with the constant use of ‘a’ instead of ‘an’ in front of a noun starting with a vowel? Also, they all seem to use ‘unable’ when they mean disable! Have they never even heard the word ‘disable’?

  3. rjs131 3

    Yes all those Labour provincial MPs are doing such a great job…

  4. These statistics tell a terrible story

    During the 11 months to August 9, police tasered 88 people including:
    * Maori: 35
    * Pacific Islanders: 16
    * Europeans: 35
    * Asians: 1


    Yes we must address the institutional racism and racial profiling but they are symptoms – the real issue is deeper and can only be sorted by truthfully looking at this country, by looking at who we are, by looking in the mirror.

    • sweetd 4.1

      Would seem fairly close in percentage terms to the ethnic groups locked up in prision.

      • grumpy 4.1.1

        Correct! Seems to me that people committing violent crimes are most likely to be tasered and that ethnic breakdown quoted sort of corresponds to the ethnicity ratio of those committing violent crime.

        Can’t see the issue there!

        • marty mars

          it’s the why not the what which was my point

          • grumpy

            Good point but it’s the “why” that leads to a ridiculous amount of crap in this country. Topped off with cries of “racism” and “poverty” etc. at any opportunity. NZ is not ready for a rational discussion on the “why” but until there is one, we will only look at statistics like this with anger (regardless of your political stance).

            • marty mars

              The ‘why’ has to be addressed and I agree that unfortunately we cannot yet have a rational argument as a country on this.

              The attitude expressed by the poster below leaves me wondering if we ever will… no sense of ‘why’ there at all

              “Yet Keith Locke says:

              “Certainly they’re being fired disproportionately at Maori. The reasons for that are something we should look into.”

              What Keith should be asking, is how many Maori lives were saved by the Police being able to use a taser to disarm an armed offender, without shooting them?”


  5. Some shameless self promotion here: I’ll be on Vinnie Eastwood’s radio show from 10-12 AM today.

    I’ll be talking about BofA in slomo collapse. John Key’s shares in that bank and his obvious conflict of interest having to serve two masters: The international bankster syndicate and the Kiwi population who’s interests are diametrically opposed to those of the banksters.

    I will also be talking about John Key’s announcement to redirect millions of dollars of taxpayers money allocated for development aid to the forces who destroyed the Libyan infrastructure in order to rebuild Libya and to “help” the Libyan population.

    Other subject which might pass are Fukushima’s ongoing disaster and the spread of hotspots throughout Japan and the contamination of foodstuffs and why we are still importing said foodstuffs from Japan.

  6. Ianupnorth 6

    This should not be hidden in the middle of the NZ Herald, it should be far more public

    A potential strike by security guards hangs over the Rugby World Cup as a key operator faces a protest over working conditions.
    The Unite Union has planned a picket from 9am today outside the Newmarket headquarters of Darien Rush Security, the firm which has won the lucrative contract to patrol Eden Park and North Harbour Stadium during the World Cup.
    Late wage payments, intimidation from management, poor training and anti-union discrimination were among the problems the picket sought to highlight, said organiser and veteran protester John Minto.
    The protest was sparked by an email from the company’s managing director, Darien Rush, when approached about negotiating a collective employment agreement.
    “Darien Rush Security is a non-union site and will remain so,” Mr Rush replied in the email, which has been forwarded to the Herald.
    “Furthermore, you are instructed not to contact any of my clients… I also put you on notice that all/any Unite Union organisers/management will be formally trespassed and the police advised if you attempt to enter the private property of Darien Rush Security
    at any time as you are not welcome.”

    According to NZ employment law

    It is illegal for an employer to discriminate against workers because they joined a union, and unions are legally allowed to enter a workplace to represent members.

    It is owned by a few Auckland rich listers – people need to make a stand against these crooks!

    • You gotta hand it to Farrar he is capable of running the most ridiculous lines that the gullible and feeble fall for.
      Sorry to disappoint you Nick but Labour has little money like it always has and the unions are struggling.  If you want to see real money in politics ask your local National Party MP about the Ruahine and the Waitemata Trusts.

  7. joe90 8

    Pigs will fly before any of our rich listers offer to do this.

    Sixteen executives, including Europe’s richest woman, the L’Oreal heiress Liliane Bettencourt, had offered in an open letter to pay a “special contribution” in a spirit of “solidarity”.

  8. prism 9

    Good news – Otago uni has found important information about the genome of the new kiwifruit
    disease. Good stuff. I understand that the Ministries of primary produce etc are all going to be amalgamated and scientists will be lost.

    Is this wise or just another nightmare dreamed up by NACT, the false prophets of a supposed vital society. Actually they are leading us into a cul de sac of incompetence and sovereign weakness. With their systems we are vulnerable to the illnesses being passed to us from our contacts with the global financial diseases.

    • mik e 9.1

      Biosecurity from the Farmers party laissez it will be Right. Cut front line jobs again 29 last time now more when we have extra people coming Dumb dumb and dumber. Typical National party short sighted idiots.Last time they were in power they cut front line officers .We ended up with a $400million clean up job painted apple moth.Labour increased frontline officers by 350 2000to2008!

    • The Voice of Reason 11.1

      Dead right, Anne, well spotted! For the Herald this is pretty damning stuff. And the first dozen comments backing it till the righties pop up. One of whom ventured this bit of delusional thinking:
      “The face behind this Editorial should realise that readers have brains. Is the NZ Herald now on a campaign to try and up the Labour Party stakes to win the General Election? Looks like it! ”

      Granny pointing out the blindingly obvious fact that the team behind Key are lightweights is not a sign of a pro-Labour campaign brewing. I wish! It might actually be a sign that in a recession, advertising spend drops. And that could be a factor in APN’s share price plunging from $2.50 in the New Year to a dollar now, with 60 cents gone in just the last 30 days. I can see a powerful motivation to tweak Key’s ears right there, eh.

      • Anne 11.1.1

        “The face behind this Editorial should realise that readers have brains. Is the NZ Herald now on a campaign to try and up the Labour Party stakes to win the General Election? Looks like it!

        Here’s Barnaby’s Herald comment response TVoR
        Boy, they have had no other target in mind since the last election! The ‘Herald’ is now the virtual official mouthpiece of the Labour Party. Look at the lineup of journalists and feature writers who echo the socialst policies of the newspaper’s UK owners.

        Don’t know who is laughing the loudest – the Left or the Herald’s editorial writers.

    • The issue might have just come to Cabinet level, or somebody was mine-sweeping for issues that could bite the Government at the election…

      Guyon Espiner described it, on Breakfast, this week as the government trying to sand off the sharp bits before the election.
      Youth Unemployment
      Mines inspectors
      Cleaning up lake Elsmere (sic?)
      Swap of land in Northland for land in Napier
      These are just the beginning of the misdirection from feel good stories that the Prime Magician and his poodles will be putting out until the election.

  9. Vicky32 12

    The Nia Glassie coroner has some “radical” recommendations that Petulant Bean says are “already under discussion”.
    All parents of under 5 year olds, should be subject to “unskedyooled” sic) inspections, and all single parents  and solo parents on benefits, should be forced to comply.
    (Why the distinction? Non-beneficiaries are ‘single parents’, beneficiaries are ‘solo parents’. Is this the not-terribly-bright 3 News reporter’s distinction, or the coroner’s?

    • rosy 12.1

      Seems it’s the reporter’s distinction and yes, it’s pejorative. The coroner used ‘single parent families’.

      The coroner seems to think all children should be monitored. Recommendation 5 (pdf, p25)

      That all children from birth be compulsory registered with government agencies and health providers and other voluntary organisations and monitored from birth through to and including the age of five. That monitoring to include scheduled and unscheduled visits to the homes where young children are living so that monitoring will ensure they are kept safe and then provided with the necessities of life

      Recommendation 6 expands on state intervention and the monitoring oversight of the care of children of single parents – working or or on a benefit – and children that have previously come to the notice of CYFS or where there is domestic violence in the home.

      Interesting when single parent families end though – 2 weeks after the boyfriend moves in? or never?

      I would like to see a bit of research on increases in child abuse since changes to postnatal care in the 1990s led to reduced home visits by health services and assistance for new parents. I’m not sure if it is worse, and if it’s worse whether less care, more deprivation, changing social mores or a combination of all is implicated.

      • just saying 12.1.1

        Is marital status a ground for discrimination under the human rights act? Income status certainly is.

        I was appalled at the suggestion that only single parent families should be subjected to random raids. If this is something that really is necessary for reducing child abuse lets raid all households with children. (And for the record I don’t believe this kind of intrusion would make a jot of diffference.)

        But no, families with two parents in residence have rights.

        I noted that the judge suggested that beneficiaries who didn’t submit to the regime should have their benefits docked. That’ll really help the children.

        It has become so socially acceptable to denigrate beneficaries that the judiciary making ignorant and discriminatory statements like this have become a regular occurence. It was only a couple of weeks ago that a woman convicted of benefit fraud was told that it was people like her that made the public think all beneficiaries are criminals. Imagine the outcry if he’d said the same about fraudster lawyers.

        • rosy

          I’m thinking that all men who move into a house with children that are not their own should be monitored – and have their benefits docked if they don’t comply. Imagine the outrage at the denigration of all stepfathers (btw – my children have an awesome stepfather).

        • ropata

          It’s a trade off.. it makes sense to focus on the segments of society matching the profile for potential child abuse. It’s a direct approach to the shameful statistics for underprivileged NZ kids.

          (long term approaches addressing the plight of the “underclass” will require decades)

          • just saying

            True Ropata, and I understand where you are coming from. But I don’t believe that further humiliation of people under the greatest stress will provide any solutions to our horrendous problem with child abuse. And abuse is rife in all strata of society. I know of cases of long-term abuse in “respectable” middle-class families. The children didn’t die, but they will carry the effects of the abuse for their lifetimes. Should kids these kinds of families be allowed to continue to be cloaked by their “respectablility”.

            I don’t believe discrimination and state-sanctioned contempt will make the lives of children any better.

        • just saying

          I shouldn’t have relied on the tv news for my information about the recommendations. It seems it was recommended that all households with children up to five years receive scheduled and unscheduled visits. Solo parent and beneficiary households (as well as those in which there has been documented abuse – how lovely that sole parents and beneficiaries should be included in this camp) however should receive this mandatory oversight indefinitely.

          Lets see which of the recommendations are taken up. What the tv reported gives a big clue.

        • prism

          As I have noted before the whole concern and direction of the discussion about these welfare policies is about children. The obvious thing is that some parents need a lot of help and all parents should be able to access help when wanted whether some child-care, medical, subsidies, holiday camps, or whatever. But no, children just appear on this earth and then become the focus of attention and in the background, some people usually look after and feed them, though not very important people, called parents.

          And won’t it be lovely to have the uberwelfare person come round, sharp eyes ready to criticise, and find fault. Ooh, shouting at your kid, I caught you out there. This house isn’t very clean, a good housekeeper puts toys away. You had better take that child to the GP and have that cough checked. But you can’t use your car it hasn’t an approved car seat for any of your children, etc etc.

          • Colonial Viper

            Welcome in Ms Nanny State.

            • prism

              Hi Colonial V. If the Ms types equal the Anatolleys and the Ruthless Richardsons then heaven save us from these harpies. They are reincarnations of the class-oriented snobs of the 19th century, who are not far away in time, and have been merely dormant waiting to rise out of the ground like zombies.

          • just saying

            I’m thinking that this coroner isn’t expecting that he’d be subjected to random inspections/raids (if he has kids himself). Maybe his partner might be inspected during the day (although he’d be well aware how unlikely that would be) but him – they wouldn’t dare.
            He’s somebody

          • rosy

            Prism, I agree there should be more focus on parents’ needs. And yes, parents need access to childcare (ECE), health care etc, but I think you’re mixing up 2 things when you move on to notions of interference in home life – the first is the control of parents and the second is care of children and support for parents, especially new parents, and especially when the parents have poor social networks.

            I don’t care for the language that the coroner used, but there are a lot of parents failing out there and this could be turned around with a bit more advice and assistance. For parents with very young babies this is best provided in the home – where the parenting is done. If this happens the call for control may well be reduced. There needs to be some consensus on up-skilling parents and protecting children and to write-all intervention as control is not helpful.

            • prism

              @rosy You are drawing a positive picture but I fear that it will just degenerate in many areas into a welfare officer to parent being treated as a child relationship, very top down. I know that many parents are failing and it’s a struggle for them to cope.

              One of the problems with many parents today is that they want to be friends with their children, they stand back from decision making and taking parental responsibility. They need to have goals and be helped to achieve them. The joy and satisfaction of being able to handle their life now and have an opportunity to work towards future dreams would change a lot in their minds and their actions towards their kiddies.

              My idea is that many have not even had a decent education, and have sunk into peer groups who find a low common standard and slosh around there together. I think that some home visits, and some learning at a structured outside venue, with childrens supervised play so parents can concentrate would be best. For those with poor social networks it would open their life a bit more. Its good to get out of the home after a while, away from the cabin fever. There would need to be a minibus that would provide transport to ensure that they got to the sessions. It would be good to be with others all learning stuff that’s relevant. I think that an ncea credit could be offered for those who have an ambition for building skills.

              • rosy

                @Prism – If visits are based on health and education it can be positive. But I know if it comes from an authoritarian view it won’t. That’s why some consensus is needed.

                “I think that some home visits, and some learning at a structured outside venue, with childrens supervised play so parents can concentrate would be best. For those with poor social networks it would open their life a bit more.”

                Yes, I agree. Plunket family centres do a wonderful job here, but women almost have to feel like failures before they go – They can be improved by incorporating health and education into everyday life can help people realise feelings of inadequacy are normal. Parent Centre groups can also provide useful and networks and strong bonds between women. It seems these are more of a resource for women who already have resources though.

                The thing that gets me most is that there are a lot of people out there who have never even held a baby, never fed one, never bathed one. There is all sorts of excitement and interest until the baby is born and then the new parent is left. It’s not just those single parents – how many couples have had enormous problems because they only have the other for support? New mothers have trouble functioning and are dreadfully unhappy simply because they are alone and without advice. This is a bigger problem than many people realise (I’ve done a bit of research on it). And it’s not only the deprived. However the deprived do not have they resources to pay for help and advice, others may. Provide advice and set good coping strategies at the beginning and half the problem is solved.

          • Vicky32

            The obvious thing is that some parents need a lot of help and all parents should be able to access help when wanted whether some child-care, medical, subsidies, holiday camps, or whatever.

            As I found out in the 1980s, though, asking for any kind of assistance gets you ‘marked’ by CYFS, and monitored – until you prove (in my case by waving the Plunket book under the woman’s nose) that you’re ‘safe’. (A neighbour had dobbed me in I suspect, because she was peeved that I was fed up with having her drop in for an evening when she had locked herself out – again! We lived in a block of council flats in Welly, and she had issues – which manifested in part, by the fact that she couldn’t remember to take her door key to work.)

            • rosy

              Yes, you and I are both very aware of these sorts of things, given our histories. This is one reason why information needs to be out there that all sorts of parents struggle. Normalise the situation (sort of like John Kirwan with his depression ads) – don’t let society think that there is a ‘problem’ with only particular groups.

              • Vicky32

                I was lucky with T., because my mother was still alive, and with G., I had my ex’s aunt – and then with L., I had my sisters around me. Ideally, mothers would have extended family around.. although that’s increasingly rare…

              • prism

                Rosy I wish your approach and ideas could come to fruition as you seem to have a good and practical handle on what would improve parents lives and skills. Some politician reading this blog please take notice you couldn’t do better for the people of NZ than to provide intelligent useful help to parents of all classes, just different approaches and levels depending on money available and education and financial situation of the particular parents involved.

      • Vicky32 12.1.2

        Oh dear… Rosy I did post a reply to you last night, but it seems it didn’t go, as I was having connection issues…
        I am reminded of how, in 1972, I had my first son, as a single mother. The law then mandated that all children of solo mothers had to be ‘inspected’ by a social worker.
        The woman arrived one sunny winter evening. I was a teen, at home with my parents, and I answered the door. She bluesed in, looking around and bellowed “I hear you have a lilttle illegit. Let’s see the sprog!” My parents and I were very unimpressed… and not at all sure that this woman would have known the signs of abuse if she’d seen them! My father was all for keeping her away from T., and for preference, throwing her out the house, but she quoted the law at him.
        14 years later, when I found T’s adopted mother she told me that she had burned the file that came with him, noting only my name, in case of a future law change (she had wanted an open adoption but the law didn’t allow that then.) The file contained a heap of details she said T.,  did not need to know – such as my father’s conviction for keeping an armoury… and his psycholoigical profile! Given that he’d died less than 2 years after the above incident and T., had been adopted 6 weeks later, it was utterly irrelevant. 🙁

        • rosy

          My plunket nurse when I was a teen was an absolute saint. Although having a completely intolerant one with my last child was eye-opening experience. Wouldn’t have wanted her when I was young and alone!

          Sounds like T got an enlightened adoptive mother, sorry you’ve had to go through all that bureaucratic judgement.

          • Vicky32

            Sounds like T got an enlightened adoptive mother, sorry you’ve had to go through all that bureaucratic judgement.

            She was and she is! (I wrote to her last nignt, T., is in rehab, being adopted truly messed him up… I’d never say that to her, I know she really meant well, which is the very sad thing.) She’s a lovely woman and ironically ended up a solo mother herself – her first husband being worse than useless and oddly paranoid about me tracking them down and taking my son back! Yet 2 years ago, he was pleading with me to do just that, because of T’s drug problem..
            Funnily enough, the one time I really needed to be watched and helped was when I was married, as my confidence went down the toilet altogether..

    • mik e 12.2

      No that would mean Dinosaur dons ex’s would have to comply also Paula Bennetts daughter.PEASANTS ONLY SORRY

  10. It’s time for a non-partisan, evidence based, national consensus and initiative on the care of our children.
    Yes, it means a return to some aspects of the old “socialist New Zealand” – increases in district nurses, plunket, state-monitoring, monitored health, healthy homes. Maybe not cradle to grav e but certainly cradle to school.
    Add to that a liveable wage, reduction in inequality (one of the biggest things that threatens the peace of the otherwise compliant western world.)

  11. Bored 15

    Some fantastic news tonight. Lake Ellesmere, NZs most polluted is set for a clean up. The regional councils, farmers bodies etc have finally recognised what has been obvious for years, the whole Selwyn Ellesmere system has been an agricultural sewer. That in itself is great news, recognition that there is a problem, but better, a willingness to do something.

    I am not sure that the dollars will be sufficient or the strategy right but it is a start. As a goal if the clean up results in a quarter of the trout running up the river that were recorded in the 1920s then it will be a huge success, a fishery to compare with Taupo with the resultant tourist dollars. Good work canterbury, now for the Manawatu system……..

  12. thejackal 16

    The Polluters Should Pay

    Today Environment Minister Nick Smith announced that one of New Zealand’s most polluted lakes will receive clean up funding. Lake Ellesmere has become heavily polluted, with little care taken by local farmers, which has resulted in high levels of Nitrogen and Phosphorous from unchecked effluent run off. Fonterra will contributed only $1.3 m of the $11.6 million fund, despite them profiteering directly from the environmental destruction…

  13. logie97 17

    There has been quite a bit of eyebrow raising (and little else) to comments relating to Libya and Joky Hen’s public statements. It was a surprise to hear his announcement of aid to this oil rich nation and also that he had already signed us up to some form of accord. Just what else has he negotiated on our behalf, in secret…? It would be nice if just for once Garner and Espiner did some delving instead of repeating the dross of opinion poll analysis?

  14. ropata 18

    Nasty pack of NIMBYs in the news this evening. Dont want those icky troubled (brown) kids having a school in posh Bucklands Beach

    Does Auckland need an integrated school bus system to end this segregation?

  15. The Voice of Reason 19

    Credit where it’s due department, potential United Future voter Pete George handles the big questions well!
    (Takes forever to load, just make a cuppa and get settled. The fun starts about the 15 minute mark.)

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