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Open Mike 26/01/2019

Written By: - Date published: 7:00 am, January 26th, 2019 - 134 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post.

For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).

Step up to the mike …

134 comments on “Open Mike 26/01/2019 ”

  1. dv 1

    Welcome back.

    • gsays 1.1

      Heh, I had visions of Lprents kitten playfully chewing through an important cable…

      • lprent 1.1.1

        Nope. My fault. I did a series of upgrades to the operating systems followed by a cleanup of the disk space. Then after telling the check systems that the site was being rebooted, rebooted at about 2am. But failed to check that the site actually came online.

        It had a configuration problem in the apache2 and failed to start up.

        Mort was innocent (this time)

  2. SaveNZ 2

    A seldom bought up fact is that coal fired and nuclear power does not work in very hot temperatures due to needing cooling as part of their process. In short they are not good in a global warming scenario as when it gets too hot, (and you need power to run air conditioners), it also effects other parts of the network.

    That is why solar and diversified power networks are needed in global warming scenarios.

    “The heat in Victoria has already cut power to thousands of properties in the state’s central north. More than 2700 AusNet customers were hit with a power outage near Nagambie and an underground cable fault might not be fixed until 5pm. ”


    • greywarshark 2.1

      Good point savenz. I’m copying this to How to get there tomorrow unless someone else does so.

    • Jenny - How to get there? 2.2

      As the heat racks up, Australia becomes more and more suited to become the world’s first hydrogen fuel energy superpower.

      High concentrated solar heat can split oxygen and hydrogen at industrial scales through the process of thermolysis far more efficiently than electrolysis, the current most common method.

      Bring it on.

      • Andre 2.2.1

        Thermolytic hydrogen production looks to be at a similar stage to photocatalytic hydrogen production; a bit closer to reality than fusion power but not much.

      • nukefacts 2.2.2

        Sorry but Hydrogen is just not efficient as a source of renewable power. There’s power loss from generation to piping, storing and consuming hydrogen.

        The cheapest and most efficient use of solar and wind sources of renewable power is to send the electricity directly to a battery or to point of consumption. The ever improving economics of battery storage will drive the cost down so much that it will become economic to store it overnight for large populations.

    • Andre 2.3

      That’s an issue for legacy power generation designed for a cooler climate. Unless the power plants are badly engineered, extreme hot temperatures should only force reduced output, not shutdown.

      New builds can and should be designed for a warmer climate and much hotter hottest days, with substantially gruntier cooling systems. The gruntier cooling systems should also improve their overall thermal efficiency in less-extreme conditions. Concentrated solar-thermal, geothermal and gas generation also have the cooling issue. Even photovoltaics benefit from kept cool, although it’s rarely if ever cost-effective to actively cool them (there’s a double-benefit from floating photovoltaic arrays on reservoirs, better output from being kept cooler and reduced evaporation).

      There’s also the transmission grid – if the cables get hot, they expand lengthwise and sag. Sometimes close enough to something underneath to start fires. One engineering solution for that is using carbon fibre cable for the tension-bearing core, and aluminium for the conductors. Carbon fibre has a very small thermal expansion lengthwise (can be positive or negative depending on the grade) so the heat-sag problem mostly goes away. It just costs a bit more initially.

      • greywarshark 2.3.1

        That’s helpful information Andre. More good infor like this will be welcome.

      • Draco T Bastard 2.3.2

        It seems it was an underground grid failure that caused the outage. No other information on what went wrong.

        I suspect that the power stations themselves weren’t badly affected if at all.

        • lprent

          Probably the same problem as we had in Auckland


          In 1998 it was the opposite of a wintry storm: it was an El Nino summer. There was a drought and February was hot, fuelling electricity demand from CBD air conditioning.

          This had a crippling effect on central Auckland’s ageing power supply. The CBD was fed by four 110 kilo-volt underground main cables – one pair that were gas filled and dated from the 1940s and another pair of oil-filled cables from the 1970s – and a solo 22kV cable from Kingsland.

          Hot, dry ground and heat changes in the cables caused movement and instability. Faults in the gas cables put more demand on the oil ones, which overheated and failed.

          The first the public knew of the impending crisis was a message from the power supplier (then known as Mercury Energy but now called Vector) advising CBD customers to conserve electricity, otherwise “drastic measures” would be needed.

          By that point, February 19, three of the main cables had failed. The first went out in January. The fourth failed on February 20, leaving the Kingsland thread as the power lifeline.

          There were two causes. A hot summer shifted the ground causing an actual break in at least one cable causing a leakage. The other one was a bit more insidious. There was insufficient ground moisture to transfer extra heat away from the cables.

          I’d just moved into my apartment towards the end of 1997, so had the fun of months of the power outages.

          It is kind of freaky to realise that at the time there were only 7000 people living in and around the CBD in 1998. The last time I looked (after the 2013 census) there were more than 70,000. It has gone up since then.

          • greywarshark

            I read recently that City of London has much of its own governance.
            Something like 7000 people live there, but 450,000 people work there or are integrated with it. e&oe

        • Exkiwiforces

          There are two Coal power stations in the Latrobe Valley in Victoria’s east couldn’t keep up with demand by 10:30am thence the rolling blackouts aka “brown outs” yesterday and one of the main trunk powerlines in Victoria went tits up as well.

          There were also localised power outages as well cause by local transmission lines not handling the increase demand of power or the extreme heat or a combination of the both.

        • Exkiwiforces

          Just found this on Railpage Australia, worth the reading the rants and has some useful links as well.


      • SaveNZ 2.3.3

        Can find the link but it looks like they have already had to shut down generations in Adelaide due to extreme heat. So just when you need power to cool, you have to shut down your generations. So I guess people could be dead pretty quickly.

        Sadly power has become a business rather than a social good, and therefore the discourses are not about the cheapest most effective ways for communities and individuals to get power but more about big business making the most profit of often the poorest people, while subtly delaying/stopping or trying to control other better, cheaper ways they could get power.

        Free trade has become about stopping social good and profiting from the effects of climate change, through thousands of pages of ‘rules’ to ensure profit remains to the big multinationals.

        “Profit over the planet: WTO’s lawsuit ruling could be a giant blow to the renewable energy movement
        WTO tribunal ruled in a lawsuit initiated by the U.S. that India’s national solar energy program violates trade law”


        • SaveNZ

          With the same ruling above, even though India had virtually ZERO solar capacity at that time the logic of US solar being damaged at that time could not be true. However the WTO still ruled in US favour.

          “The U.S. sued India in the WTO tribunal because India’s subsidized solar energy program required that particular parts be made in the country. Washington claims that, because of this program, its solar exports to India have fallen by 90 percent since 2011, when the program started. As the Sierra Club’s Ben Beachy noted, however, India had almost no solar capacity at this time.”

        • Draco T Bastard

          Free trade has become about stopping social good and profiting from the effects of climate change, through thousands of pages of ‘rules’ to ensure profit remains to the big multinationals.

          It’s not about free-trade – it’s about forcing trade.

          India didn’t want to trade so as to help develop their economy and so the US through the WTO forced it upon them. They did so so that the US economy could be developed at India’s expense.

          If these people were truly after free-trade they’d be dropping all the rules and allowing nations to decide for themselves if they’re going to trade with another nation or not. That, after all, is what free-trade is.

          • OnceWasTim

            “If these people were truly after free-trade they’d be dropping all the rules and allowing nations to decide for themselves if they’re going to trade with another nation or not. That, after all, is what free-trade is.”

            Do you think we might see some committed ‘free trade’ advocate (such as a Wayne or an Ollie Hartwich) come along and offer an explanation as to why free trade and FTAs are not actually free trade?

            I imagine if they ever do, the explanation will be laced with spin and buzz words going forward.
            And you’re absolutely correct re India. I still marvel at how the MFATs, Oz equivalent and others can’t understand why India is one of those ‘hard nuts to crack’ in obtaining an FTA.
            Here’s a hint: Despite all the overt corruption, backhanders and promises, there is actually a concern among the Indian political elite for its citizens – whether from the Left, or from the Right. They don’t actually like being treated like shit in the minds of their foreign betters especially with the offshore diaspora.

            • Draco T Bastard

              Do you think we might see some committed ‘free trade’ advocate (such as a Wayne or an Ollie Hartwich) come along and offer an explanation as to why free trade and FTAs are not actually free trade?

              I would expect them to come on and explain why these agreements are all about free-trade when, more often than not, they’re used to force trade.

              • OnceWasTim

                Don’t hold your breath if you’re expecting anything meaningful

              • OnceWasTim

                3pm (1500hrs) and its now 2000Hrs.
                Waiting waiting waiting. I’d have thought there’d have been a few regulars jumping in by now – seems not.
                I guess they’re waiting for instructions

                • Draco T Bastard

                  They really don’t like it when the truth is before them.

                  The fact that these agreements are forced trade rather than free-trade undermines their credibility but they actually can’t deny that these agreements are about forcing trade rather than free-trade.

                  The results speak for themselves.

            • gsays

              One of the things I have learnt watching today’s ODI involving India is the meaning of the cartwheel in the Indian flag.
              From Wikipedia (therefore it must be true), :
              “Gandhi first proposed a flag to the Indian National Congress in 1921. The flag was designed by Pingali Venkayya. In the centre was a traditional spinning wheel, symbolising Gandhi’s goal of making Indians self-reliant by fabricating their own clothing…”

              But wait, there’s more:
              “Bhagwa or the Saffron denotes renunciation or disinterestedness. Our leaders must be indifferent to material gains and dedicate themselves to their work.”

              I would love to include this in the cabinet manual.

              • OnceWasTim

                You’ve got it @gsays.
                Not something a few Wasps in Delhi half a mile from a Railway Museum sucking on a fag and worrying about their future will ever get.
                Just as well I ‘spose there’s now a ‘Maori Policy Unit’ in MFAT’ with one or two decent folk leading the charge, even if they do worship at the lower Tory Street Temple

                • OnceWasTim

                  there’s NOW a ‘Maori Policy Unit’ ……etc.
                  Sorry, I had a Leftist’s curmudgeon moment brought on by memories of a Relda and a Marama.
                  A Kohia cum Martin almost.

              • gsays

                While I am at it, the stream of the match I am watching is from espn, locals there are able to get a new BIG suv with 72 months to pay, 0% interest.

        • Macro

          So just when you need power to cool, you have to shut down your generations. So I guess people could be dead pretty quickly.

          You would be dead right there. Excuse the horrible pun.
          But the fact is that in Australia more people die from heat waves than from bush fires.

      • nukefacts 2.3.4

        Thermal generation relies on the Carnot cycle, and it becomes less efficient as the ambient temperature rises. So does the cooling efficiency, and in many jurisdictions power plants are also restricted from putting too much heat back into rivers/estuaries, as this can have a severe impact on ecosystems. There is just so much legacy coal around that can’t be retrofitted with better cooling that our warming climate will cause more outages of coal fired power generation.

    • DJ Ward 2.4

      I’m not sure how you came to that conclusion about cooling or temperature being the cause of the power cut. They point out it was an underground cable and the fault could be caused by quite a few things.

      A real issue for cooling for me would be transformers dealing with high loads. They are everywhere and are air cooled, the coils immersed in oil. So obviously 50 deg air is less efficient in cooling than 30 deg air. The risk being the insulating coating on the wires fail, they short circuit and explode.

      As for the power plants there is two versions. Those that recycle water in cooling towers and those using water from rivers like Huntly. So the water exits the plant as steam at 100 deg plus, condenses and falls back down the tower. In theory less water would be recycled as less water can reach the temp to condense. The actual turbines shouldn’t be effected by a large amount as they operate at temperatures much higher than the air temerature. If anything the may need higher water flows in any component cooling part of the operation.

      So water supply is actually the issue. Plants that can’t condense enough water may not have consent to draw enough from waterways to compensate. Plants like Huntly should have no issues as they have the ability to add cooling towers.

      The actual figures for the effect of air temperature are small.


    • Chris T 2.5


      One nuclear power plant in a non earthquake area up north would solve a lot of problems.

      • solkta 2.5.1

        Try and put one up here and you will get problems like you wouldn’t believe.

        • SaveNZ

          Funny how there has been ZERO nuclear power plants built by private practise in the world, instead they use tax payer money for the folly. Even when private practise do make the nuclear power plants it is enough to drive them under, meanwhile the countries and companies that invested in solar early are booming.

          • SaveNZ

            From the above link

            “Fossil fuel company TransCanada is already suing the U.S. government, after the Obama administration rejected its proposed Keystone XL Pipeline on environmental grounds. Former NASA environmental scientist and now Columbia University professor James Hansen emphasized that, if the pipeline were built and the vast oil reserves in Alberta, Canada’s tar sands were used, it would mean “game over for the climate,” yet the corporation is demanding $15 billion in compensation from American taxpayers.”

            Oh, lets look at what industries are causing climate change, and then getting the free trade deals to compensate them for their destruction of the planet so far! Crazy!

            Just 100 companies responsible for 71% of global emissions, study says
            A relatively small number of fossil fuel producers and their investors could hold the key to tackling climate change


      • Macro 2.5.2

        in a non earthquake area up north

        Never heard of the Firth of Thames as a rift valley?

        Then there is the Auckland Volcanic field

        The Auckland volcanic field is the most densely populated field of its type in the world. Fifty-six volcanoes have been identified in the field.

        The field is 250,000 years old and there have been 55 eruptions. The most recent was Rangitoto 500 years ago, when it erupted two or three times.


        • Chris T

          I never realised in the entirety of the North Island there is only Auckland

          • Macro

            I never realised you failed Comprehension 101.

            • Chris T

              I think I can comprehend they were talking about volcanoes in Auckland

              • Macro

                And failed to see a reference to a rift valley less than 50 miles from Auckland which is thought by geologists to pose the risk of a large earthquake. Such a shake would affect the majority of the upper island as the fault runs through the Hauraki Gulf. It why the Firth of Thames is why it is – it is a submerged rift valley.
                But not only is Auckland potentially liable to suffer an earthquake it is also liable to volcanic eruption. The hot springs at Miranda don’t just happen to be there for no apparent reason.
                Indeed the whole of the upper North Island is formed from volcanic and earthquakes. If you were to do Geology 101 from AUC you would go on a field tip to Matheson Bay by Leigh, half way between Auckland and Whangarei, where the the evidence of Earth quakes, volcanoes, and other geological action is to be plainly seen.

          • joe90

            Northland is probably the only place in the entirety of the North Island with an acceptably low level of seismic activity.

            But good luck finding a site in Northland with the attributes and infrastructure necessary to building a nuclear reactor.


            • Chris T

              I was thinking it might provide a few jobs and revive a few towns and force a govt to finally put a decent road in.

              Hence my “solve a lot of problems.”

              Apologies though.

              I wasn’t exactly mr clear

              • joe90

                I think you’ll need a little more than a decent road.

                For starters, a deep water port.

                • Chris T

                  All good

                  Add that

                  The pay off in reliable power to Auckland for the whole city, including a massive upswing in EV’s and electric public transport would more than pay for itself.

    • Pat 2.6

      Not only are they designed to run with typically cooler water the waste heat has environmental impacts which will only increase with recalibration and an already warmer cooling source.

      “Every day, large reactors like the two at Diablo Canyon, California, individually dump about 1.25 billion gallons of water into the ocean at temperatures up to 20 degrees Fahrenheit warmer than the natural environment. ”




      • Andre 2.6.1

        I’ve got tickling in the back of my head that Huntly is (or was) occasionally constrained by its resource consent conditions. IIRC, when the Waikato river is already warm and low flow they’re not allowed to dump much extra heat into it, so that limits the power output.

        • gsays

          Imagine if that energy was able to be diverted to tunnel houses.
          The tomatoes would be going gangbusters!

  3. Jenny - How to get there? 3

    The US Reichstag moment comes closer.

    President Trump agrees to open the US government up for 30 days. After that period if he doesn’t get his wall, he has threatened to either close the government again, or declare a National Emergency.

    Even for a President who doesn’t read, the enormity of the second option can’t escape him.

    • greywarshark 3.1

      I found a tongue in cheek piece on what advantages the Wall might enable.

      Greg Ninness details the wide ranging economic opportunities offered by US President Donald Trump’s proposed Mexican border wall

      Also on the Wall and USA-Mexico long hostile relationship.

      Journey To Aztlan: Chris Trotter on why the Democrats should let Trump build his wall

    • Andre 3.2

      Dunno about that. He knows he just got spanked over his dropping ratings so it’s unlikely he’ll try another shutdown, and his base thinks he just cravenly surrendered.

      His way out is to get a bit of extra funding for more technology stuff like remote surveillance and entry port inspections, and call it a “smart wall”. He’s already setting the stage for that switcheroo, and most of his Wallnuts will go along with it.

      But Trump’s description of what kind of wall he wants has evolved in a notable concession to his critics. Trump said Friday that natural barriers already provide ample protection in some parts of the border, and that resources for border control should also focus on ports of entry and technology developments beyond a physical barrier.

      “The walls that we are building are not medieval walls. They are smart walls designed to meet the needs of front-line border agents and are operationally effective,” Trump said. “We do not need 2,000 miles of concrete wall from sea to shining sea, we never did, we never proposed that.”


      • bwaghorn 3.2.1

        Would trump’s wall actually have any effect other than to fulfill his election promises.
        Fencing people out is vastly different to fencing them in imho

        • Andre

          As a practical matter, a concrete wall from the Gulf of Mexico to the Pacific Ocean would:

          make floods in the Rio Grande much worse by impeding floodwaters

          forcibly take a lot of land from a lot of really ornery Texans

          really fuck up the ecosystems in the Big Bend area of Texas and kill a lot of the wildlife that depends on access to the Rio Grande for water let alone north-south migration patterns (equivalent ecosystems in the California mountains are already fucked from the fencing that’s already built)

          barely noticeably reduce illegal immigration since most arrive legally and overstay, are smuggled through an entry port concealed in a vehicle, or go over or under existing fencing

          • DJ Ward

            He is not proposing what you stated.

            Start again with what he is proposing.
            What’s interesting about Trump is he has is end game and a starting position. Over time has starting position has changed from your comment, to his present policy. He has listened to the experts, who want the steel barrier etc.
            His end game hasn’t changed.

            Stop ILLEGAL immigration.
            So you like law breaking and keep coming up with excuses justifying law breaking. He wants things to be lawful.

            Most illegal immigration. But the rest is acceptable to you. Trump wants to stop it therefore Andre must condone it.
            So most convicted rapists?
            So most MS13?
            So most sex trade victims?
            Where do they enter the US?

            I’m amazed that you condone those things just on your hatred of Trump. You would rather rapists, Gang members, and sex trafficking be unimpeded than let a single Trump policy, sorry Obama policy, sorry Pelosi policy be funded.

        • Sacha

          It will make some steel and construction company owners wealthier.

    • DJ Ward 3.3

      The North American Venuzuela is one step closer.


      Those Hitler digs are clearly stupid.
      The socialist MSM is the new Goebbels.

      There’s no enormity in building a wall. Not a single American will have a single control placed on them. Not one. No media imprisoned like Venuzuela. No protesters shot or run over like Venuzuela. No corruption like Venuzuela. No high taxes that cause all the youth to flee like Venuzuela.

      Nothing. Not one thing Nazi in anything Trump has done. Unlike Ocasio Cortez who is a racist and sexist as well. On record with her hate white men comments.

      After all Nazis are socialists. It’s in the name.

      • Grant 3.3.1

        “After all Nazis are socialists. It’s in the name.”

        Don’t be intellectually lazy. You’ve clearly got the smarts to be better than that. Get educated and get real man.


      • ropata 3.3.2

        Aside from your irrational Godwinisms, I agree that the concept of walls is not inherently bad, humans have built them throughout history. Trump’s tantrum shutdown wasn’t really about he wall, it’s about Democrats taking control of Congress, and obstructing the Mueller investigation. Trump has had 2 years to fund his stupid fscken wall but he seemed to forget about it until now.

        • DJ Ward

          I think your wrong.
          She has a great personality but clearly not that bright.
          She refuses to by interviewed by media that may ask non patsy questions so she can’t actually get to that higher level. The day she has to face a real interview rather than patsy questions she will look stupid and scary.

          The rich are going WTF she is just nuts. The second she gets any traction or power with her ideas large numbers of the rich will donate to the republicans. She will be like the gift that keeps on giving.

          • joe90

            Talking about not that bright

            • Draco T Bastard


              In fact, we actually need maximum incomes. Not just high interest rates but actually saying that amounts over X amount will be taxed at 100%.

              We need to stop fucking around and realise that the economy really is a Zero Sum Game.

          • Gabby

            She won’t go anywhere a fox wanker if she has any sense warty.

          • Draco T Bastard

            I think your wrong.
            She has a great personality but clearly not that bright.

            As she’s socialist she’s so obviously far brighter than you.

            The rich are going WTF she is just nuts.

            No, the rich are panicking as they realise that their end is nigh.

            But, you’re a good RWNJ and you’re here to defend their unearned wealth.

      • McFlock 3.3.4

        When the Nazis kidnapped children from their parents and adopted them out to ‘better’ people, at least they kept proper paperwork.

        • DJ Ward

          That’s right, they were very perdantic on that one. Unlike Venuzuela who have no paper to take records. Or no media to report on it. There in prison.

          We have the same policy here in NZ it’s called CYFS. All you need is you and 2 dodgy mates to independently make false allegations and they will go around and take the children from the parent or parents. They keep paperwork as well but good luck trying to get hold of it. The children are placed with audited, better parents. Sadly often more likely to abuse the kids vs the parents.

          • McFlock

            Exactly. Everyone else identifies that child, who their parents are, where they were taken into custody (and by whom), whether the child was healthy, and what their destination will be.

            The Nazis kept better records on the kids they intentionally murdered than dolt45’s crew do on kids they were supposed to try to keep alive.

      • Psycho Milt 3.3.5

        After all Nazis are socialists. It’s in the name.

        The fact that right-wingers bring this level of analysis to historical, social and political questions explains a great deal about their comments.

        • Draco T Bastard

          They’re a perfect example of the Dunning-Kruger effect. They’re too ignorant to understand that they have NFI WTF they’re talking about.

          • DJ Ward

            I was taking the piss and the comment deserved it.

            • Jenny - How to get there?

              Tick tock, tick tock, tick tock….

              Trump Threatens to Use Emergency Power to Build Wall If Congress Does Not Approve It by February 15

              “If we don’t get a fair deal from Congress, the government will either shutdown on February 15, again, or I will use the powers afforded to me under the laws and the Constitution of the United States to address this emergency,”

              Donald J. Trump

              • Macro

                But just imagine what the next Democrat President in 2020 could do with those “emergency powers” tRump is just wanting to set a precedent for!
                Action on Climate Change.
                Immigration policy.
                Voting rights.
                Social Justice.
                to name a few.
                His advisers are cautioning him about taking this approach because it would set up a whole gateway for open slather executive action that potentially violates their constitution. Furthermore, if it should succeed through the myriad of legal objections, such an order would immediately face, it opens the way for any succeeding Democrat to do something to which Republicans are totally opposed. Of course, having essentially cast aside all the adults in the room, and never actually listening to any advice that may be given – unless it is from his mates on Fox news – who knows what he will do. He obviously hasn’t a clue as to what he is doing – so how is anyone else to know?

                • Jenny - How to get there?

                  Macro …
                  26 January 2019 at 7:32 pm
                  But just imagine what the next Democrat President in 2020 could do with those “emergency powers”….

                  What, next Democratic President?

                  Early reviews of Fahrenheit 11/9 suggest that Moore uses the Flint water crisis to show how civil safeguards are being eroded by Republican freebooters, He claims that Rick Snyder, the Republican governor of Michigan, engineered a virtual coup d’etat by instituting “emergency management” that sidelined elected officials after Flint’s water supply was polluted by an unnecessary but profitable new pipeline.

                  Moore also suggests that Trump is the figurehead of an attempt to destroy democracy in the US: his speeches are compared to Adolf Hitler’s to argue that the same social passivity that allowed dictators to legally seize power in the 1930s is blunting opposition today.


                  Ladies and Gentlemen the last President of the United States.

                  • Macro

                    You fail to understand the importance of the most recent election and the real “Blue Wave” that transformed the country. And yes it did transform the country. There is still more to be done, but the people are not resting on their laurels, they are now seriously working on 2020. Trumpkins who are now the only base for Trump support, are even now, walking away as they realise the reality of life under the Orange one is not what he said it would be. The Republicans don’t have the support, nor the gumption, to remove him, and they are fractionalised as a party, like they have never been before. There has been a huge reaction to the election of Trump. It has energized people, particularly women. There is growing movement for reform.
                    If Trump was successful to create expanded “Emergency Powers” for his wall, that would create a precedent for any follow on President to do a vast number of things of which current Republicans would never dream of doing. Remember it was the power of the Republicans in Congress that has held up any substantive progress on Climate Action on the world stage for decades. No US President could agree to working towards reducing GHG emissions on a world stage without their consent.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  The problem, of course, is that what’s happening is the problem.

                  How can anyone address the problem if no one recognises it? If their whole being is about maintaining the status quo?

                  Here’s an excerpt from my Book of Shadows 29/11/2001:

                  Saturday, 29 September 2001
                  The meek have inherited the Earth and are now too frightened to go outside their doors. They seek to deny change, change in how they live – change within themselves.
                  Do not be afraid – change is life, to be masters’ of the change is to be enlightened.

                  To seek enlightenment is to become unenlightened, seek instead to become masters of self.

                  This war which looms upon us is not a war against terror as George W. (Dubya) Bush would have us believe – it is a war against a change in the status quo, a war to try and preserve those in power, those who believe that they are the rulers of Earth.
                  This war will see the end of the American Empire, its final collapse coming in a time when America has no friends – when brother sets against brother.
                  The end of this war can only come from within America, as those who come to see the tyranny of what is and rise up to bring change. The catalyst has started, the ball is rolling – the end is in doubt. Those of us who sit on the side lines are those who will cry most – none will be unchanged.

                  Cost will be beyond measure, attainment beyond price.

                  This is the Final War – the war against capitalism.

            • greywarshark

              Your piss has blood in it! Better get a health check.

            • Draco T Bastard

              1. you need to put in a /sarc tag else no one else will get it. It’s the general problem wit text.
              2. You’re a RWNJ so we expect you to be lambasting Nazi Germany as socialist when it actually wasn’t.

      • Draco T Bastard 3.3.6

        After all Nazis are socialists. It’s in the name.

        Nope. They were all capitalists:

        On Twitter, Justin Paulson brought this fascinating article from the Journal of Economic Perspectives to my attention. It’s called “The Coining of ‘Privatization’ and Germany’s National Socialist Party.” Apparently, the first use of the word “privatization” (or “reprivatization”) in English occurred in the 1930s, in the context of explaining economic policy in the Third Reich. Indeed, the English word was formulated as a translation of the German word “Reprivatisierung,” which had itself been newly minted under the Third Reich.

        Isn’t privatisation what we’ve been doing for the last thirty years?

        So, for the last thirty years we’ve been following Nazi Germany’s economic policies.

    • phil99 3.4

      I believe he’ll do that. He is unable to negotiate

  4. greywarshark 4

    Chris Trotter gives the UK an Eagle’s-eye view and perceives the cracks.

    Chris Trotter on how imperialism has set Britain apart from its European competitors and landed it in the mess it’s in –
    The Prime Minister, Theresa May, and her supposed alternative, Jeremy Corbyn, epitomise in equal measure the malady that is Brexit.

    May has failed utterly to draw into the debate the broad range of parties and interests whose co-operation continues to be essential to the extremely difficult task of making Britain’s departure from the European Union, if not painless, then bearable. Tribal, mistrustful, high-handed and fatally unimaginative, the Conservative Party leader remains politically upright only because her job is now so hard and so thankless that nobody else wants it.

    • OnceWasTim 4.1

      His latest on Bowalley Road is fairly brutal:
      although I can understand how many aren’t seeing the benefits of a change in government (yet). Let’s hope tho’ that we don’t keep getting a “Rome wasn’t built in a day” response from any criticism – it’s not going to wash for too much longer.

      • Pat 4.1.1

        Davos attendance was a poor decision

        • OnceWasTim

          maybe, maybe not
          We’ll see whether or not this is Her moment of advocacy for change, or whether it will be seen as just another media moment in time (going forward).
          I’m hoping it is the former, although I understand she has a whole lot of shit to push uphill to get to where she’d hope we all want to be.
          There are a growing number of the dis-possessed that can’t even afford a concern for the politics of kindness and they’ve given up even being interested in such a hope.
          2019 is going to be an interesting year.

          • greywarshark

            It occurs to me that if we don’t get a fairer system the grievances and hate against governmental and elite leaders will build up. There eventually could be a revenge group that pays back to the families of the comfortable privateers. Best to really take things seriously about giving the lower classes some let-up on their downward trend in everything before the obsessed get beyond hope for bread tomorrow; let them eat cake sometimes now please, sitting on their own chairs in their own lockable home, not the romantic outdoors.

  5. greywarshark 5


    I don’t think Singaporeans are going to be satisfied with NZ Defence Forces standing back and pleading laissez faire. I think there are many Singaporean Chinese in this country. They didn’t lift themselves out of poverty by dropping regulations and adopting a she’ll-be-right approach. It wasn’t us gov’ plea or we can’t be questioned, ‘Do you know who we are’ can work to deal with us ordinary NZ citizens but they will be displeased.

    • Draco T Bastard 5.1

      The Defence Force says it does not intend to undertake an internal investigation, but will help facilitate Singapore’s inquiries.

      The Singaporean training event, Exercise Thunder Warrior, is hosted by New Zealand’s military but its own soldiers do not take part.

      So, what more do you expect the NZDF to do?

      • greywarshark 5.1.1

        That could be put – what less do you expect the NZDF to do? And I could say yeah good idea if they didn’t host such practises; but then how can they withdraw without breaking the working alliance that is thrust upon us by the constant desire to have something that someone else has got. Which is millenials old.

        So I don’t know what can NZDF do; be better hosts? Try to make it clear in Singapore news media with adverts that we are very sad that one of their young role models and youth stars has been killed here, and stress that we were not involved?

        • Draco T Bastard

          And I could say yeah good idea if they didn’t host such practises; but then how can they withdraw without breaking the working alliance that is thrust upon us

          They may have hosted the exercise but they weren’t part of it.

          This means that no investigation by them will result in any meaningful resolution.

          The only ones who can investigate the incident is Singapore.

          Which is what’s happening with the NZDF assistance.

          There is, quite literally, nothing else that the NZDF can do.

          So I don’t know what can NZDF do; be better hosts? Try to make it clear in Singapore news media with adverts that we are very sad that one of their young role models and youth stars has been killed here, and stress that we were not involved?

          He was a Singaporean defence force personnel operating under their jurisdiction. There is, quote literally, nothing that the NZDF can do except extend NZs condolences which I’m pretty sure that they’ve already done on our behalf.

          There is nothing that you can fault our defence forces with as they didn’t have anything to do with it.

          • greywarshark

            There is nothing that you can fault our defence forces with as they didn’t have anything to do with it.
            I already indicated that DTB. So don’t go on about it.

        • lprent


          As far as I am aware the NZDF provides the venue but not direct control of the exercise. Certainly not the NZDF staff (as your link points out) except probably for exercise bounds.

          Just like the exercises that the SAF does in a number of friendly countries where they have some room to do operational training in larger areas than their islands. The SAF does these exercises shipping their own gear into the host country and mainly doing their own exercises. As far as I am aware the use of many of those exercise areas are paid for in millions or billions of dollars deals. I suspect that if they aren’t explicitly doing a multilateral exercise, that any operational training cooperating with host forces would be an afterthought.

          The Singapore land area is only about 3/4 that of the Auckland urban area. It severely limits the kind of exercise that they can do inside their own country. For instance at brigade or regimental level, anything to do with jet aircraft, most armour or artillery, hell even the bush warfare areas would be limited. Gods knows what else they’d need to do. In Australia they use thousands of square kilometres at Shoalwater Bay.

          But what you don’t seem to grasp is that the SAF are finicky about training injuries or deaths. In Singapore even training deaths caused by dehydration or lightning are prominent in the news media. Everything that I’ve seen over this last year (I spent 5 months of 2018 in Singapore) indicates that they are the best people to do any such inquiry. They have more actual experience than the NZDF.

          That is because they cycle so many more people through training. Conscripts through their two years and reserves through their annual training. That is a *lot* of training. It is a far far large force than NZDF. Active personnel are about 70k at any one time. And there are over a million reserves.

          With military training, like that of civilian training, there simply isn’t any way to remove all risk. The trick is to make sure that you learn from accidents to make damn sure that they don’t reoccur. I can’t see how getting the NZDF to do it would add much, if anything.

    • joe90 5.2

      Singapore Armed Forces use Waiouru for live fire artillery training and as your link notes, it’s Singapore’s show so there’s no reason for the NZDF to be involved in any inquiry.


      • greywarshark 5.2.1

        We can express sorrow in a media release that would show up in Singapore. It affects our 100% Pure happy place promotion somewhat. We don’t want any more preventable deaths in this country piling up in statistics!

  6. OnceWasTim 6

    Something @ Cleangreen and possibly others might be interested in:


    Seems to me there might be places around NZ where this could be useful in the future, but I also wonder whether we’ll take our traditional short term approach to doing things and go for ‘light rail’ options using a completely different gauge.

  7. rata 7

    The Labour party needs a name change.
    Here are a few starters.
    New Zealand Pacific
    New Zealand Global
    Our New Zealand.
    True New Zealand.
    New Zealand Heart.

  8. WeTheBleeple 8

    Another tailings dam collapse. Hundreds missing. Surrounding farmland destroyed via being covered in toxic sludge.

    Shares in Vale drop 10%. The same Vale responsible for the last dam failing in Minas Gerais, the 19 deaths then, and Brasil’s worst ecological disaster.

    Bolsonaro to the rescue, concerned for miners welfare.


    • greywarshark 8.1

      What I am aware of in the free market is that every disaster is a profit centre if a Corporate can work it right. So one conglomerate screws up – then another supplies a remedy. The governments pay and pay and pay, and the people say what was in that brown paper email?

  9. rata 9

    While we are at it a 21 century name
    for New Zealand is way over due.
    We are not a Dutch province.
    Tasman did not discover New Zealand.
    Realistically we should be Rarotonga Hou.

  10. A 10

    Holy heck.

    During the government shutdown 200+ US government websites had their SSL certificates expire. Bad, very bad.


  11. CHCOff 11


    There is a vacuum with NZ demand & supply lobbying, so it tends to go to rorting instead.

    To different degrees, some things are natural monopolies, like govt. itself is for example. The strength of that natural monopolistic part of the societal economy, is that despite all the leverage put over it to the contrary, it is a product of dynamic NZ demand & supply.

    That is a general guide then, to the direction in enabling NZ lobbying systems for even the bigger natural monopolistic areas of activity to take the place of rorting.


    • Draco T Bastard 11.1

      Quoting article:

      Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Kris Faafoi on Saturday announced he’ll be asking the public for ideas on how to toughen the law.

      Wonder if he’ll like the answers because the first thing that needs to be done is for all natural monopolies that provide essential services (Power, telecommunications, water, hospitals (and health in general)) to be brought in to state ownership as a government service. Some of which (i.e, health) would not carry charges.

  12. Draco T Bastard 12

    The Reactionary Mind: Conservatism from Edmund Burke to Donald Trump

    In The Reactionary Mind, Robin traces conservatism back to its roots in the reaction against the French Revolution. He argues that the right was inspired, and is still united, by its hostility to emancipating the lower orders. Some conservatives endorse the free market; others oppose it. Some criticize the state; others celebrate it. Underlying these differences is the impulse to defend power and privilege against movements demanding freedom and equality — while simultaneously making populist appeals to the masses. Despite their opposition to these movements, conservatives favor a dynamic conception of politics and society — one that involves self-transformation, violence, and war. They are also highly adaptive to new challenges and circumstances. This partiality to violence and capacity for reinvention have been critical to their success.

    My bold.

    This one just got on to my Must Read list.

  13. NZJester 13

    I was watching the Philip DeFranco channel playing interviews from LAUSD Teachers and why the went on strike. They were offered better pay but turned it down as what they want is lower class sizes, and full-time nurses and counselors.
    Another thing that was mentioned was about a lot of the funding trickery going on with some of the charter schools there. The schools have a headcount at a certain time near the start of the school year that helps set their funding. Right after this time a lot of the charter schools then dump a lot of the lower performing students forcing them back to public schools. Meanwhile, they keep the funding level for the higher number of students while the public schools forced to accept them are left with a funding level for a lower number of students. The charter schools have effectively found a loophole to swipe funding from the public schools while being left with the best of the cherrypicked students. They can also turn down those with physical handicaps putting even more pressure on the public schools who must supply extra funding from their budget for those students.
    Some of this seems to resonate with what was happening here under the last National government with charter schools being better funded than public schools and being able to cherrypick students and having no accountability.

    Dolan Twins Funeral Controversy & Why The LAUSD Teacher Strike Will Ripple Through The US…

    • greywarshark 13.1

      I get so brassed off with commenters who present on this blog using coded language of acronyms. It’s lazy, and irrational when it is about specialist subjects and people ought to know better. How on earth are commenters supposed to know what LAUSD is. I presume on looking it up on google that its’s this;

      • OnceWasTim 13.1.1

        I agree. I keep getting stuck on what IIRC means, and occasionally FWIW.
        Besides, those acronyms often often have a different meaning assigned to them through time.
        For example, at one time SDLC meant Synchronous Data Link Control until some sage came along with a project management process and it became Systems Development Life Cycle.
        Is it possible COVFEFE has some deep meaning in the mind of an orange turd?

        • greywarshark

          The first two are ones people generally know about. They are useful for being short. I can understand them being good for phone texters. That Covfefefe is a doozy. I had some fun finding out about it.

  14. greywarshark 14

    Just watching link to a piece on early languages in the UK. Thet have just mentioned the burghs that would contain a group of traders and businesspeople who had a fairly autonomous sytem, reporting to a noble who reported to a king.

    I think we have to revitalise our local areas as the governments appear to have been captured by right wing economists with romantic, sensual dreams supplied by Ayn Rand.
    I think we could end up in a Mafia-like community with government providing protection whichever way we lean. So think about semi-autonomous regions, they might choose to be supportive of each other, in exchange for more choice of what to do with their collected taxes. I have been suggesting that say 5% of GST collected in particular areas be returned there to provide and update infrastructure. May be the tax reform group might have looked at that.

  15. greywarshark 15

    Something to brighten up Labour? Eddie Izzard is a Labour Party official and wantsto stand for Parliament.

    On Brexit –

    Coming to Auckland nZ 1 March

    (April Berlin July San Fransisco so he gets around.)

  16. Dennis Frank 16

    Well, the yanks just beat the brits 19-7 in Hamilton – even though the latter played really tight attacking rugby. Amazing how good the USA sevens team has become the last couple of years, after being non-contenders for so long. Obviously we must blame Trump. Anyone sussed out how he did it yet?

  17. CHCOff 17


    Metric tests to a person’s competency to THC levels & a related license to smoke pot perhaps, along with the availability of cheap devices for enthusiasts to purchase & use for application of such an approach.

    Individual freedom comes with personable responsibility & self-control after all.

    Perhaps such regulations would be a way to help people with high dependencies get to grips with their self-management and organisation better, in essence raising the lowest common denominator to a growing societal problem area in general & to help put a lid on it at a relatively harmless level.


    • gsays 17.1

      After reading that article it reinforced my opposition to legalisation.
      Commodifying by legalising a herb creates all sorts of issues.

      Decriminilising is a far better way to go.
      Take profit out of the issue, depower gangs, enable folk with pot issues to seek help, keep corporates away from marijuana.

    • Ad 17.2

      Regulation should continue to include bans for THC levels in a person’s blood for:

      – Private car
      – Bus driving
      – Taxi driving
      – Truck driving
      – In fact random testing for using any machinery at all
      – In fact random testing for any level of THC in the workplace no matter where you are

      And of course harder enforcement at school:
      – Random testing at school, to ensure the legal age is enforced and young people actually study

      And a tax step that’s far higher for using it as cigarette, damaging the lungs, compared to less tax for a pill or liquid form.

      If they felt like it they could hypothecate (dedicate) the income from both tobacco and marijuana sales to minimizing their harm.

      Now that the “rights” argument is getting closer, let’s talk about actual responsibilities in society.

      • CHCOff 17.2.1

        It would need a good stepped metric testing license system. People are different.

        As long as that was sound, the rest of associated approaches and outcomes would gravitate around it effectively to the shape of the market and how it functions.

      • One Two 17.2.2

        You’re advocating for people, including minors to hand over their DNA…randomly…

        Consistently, you expose a weak minded authoritarian streak in your comments, Ad…

        Keep pondering until you come up with a more nuanced process that doesn’t begin with presumed guilt…something that doesn’t resemble a sledge hammer…

        So called leftist thinking at its most confused…

        Have some freedom of choice…now subject yourself to random testing…

      • greywarshark 17.2.3

        Yuk. Next thing they will be limiting how many farts is appropriate per day and decide it should be none and then whole classes at school will go into detention when nobody will own up. No one wants to now, it will be worse when it is punishable. /sarc

  18. Ike 18

    Lets hope our Prime Minister has the good sense not to be sucked into Nato’s latest attempt to make out seventeen years of pointless killing in Afghanistan is justified and in some way moral. Lets also hope she passes on the, sure to arrive, requests to support regime change in Venezuela too. Trudeau has made it clear he is Trumps bitch. Lets try and keep some self respect.

  19. Eco Maori 20

    Kia ora The AM Show The 7,s Rugby in Hamilton was awesome the stands were packed out and OUR 7,s Black Ferns Wahine Rugby team first game on home soil was a great success. Mana Wahine its looks like it will be a yearly event for OUR Black Firns Mana Wahine. The All Blacks 7 team is still in the hunt for the 7 trophy to ka pai. simon we needed the greens party in Government after shonky shorted the system for his wealthy m8 nar you don’t want a capital gains tax that would make life better for the many people and ECO MAORI knows national run government’s for the 00.1%
    I put deflated the alt right neo mark his blue m8s were not happy with that move they played up heaps after that kick from ECO Maori. I will observe a bit more before I put my nose in the Auckland Council election. I still say all the anity capital gains principles of NZ Have the teachers union by the noses. Jason I feel sorry for you people in Australia with those scorching temperatures over them. Jason it only takes 1 degree changes for life or death no wonder you and duncan are m8s both human caused climate change deniers. That last comment of yours on social media shaming fools who are disrespectful totally agree with that view social media gives people a conscious. Phil Goff needs to use social media to direct the traffic away from traffic jam’s like Korea does he needs to send someone there and see what they do with DATA & social media to keep one of the highest density and Internet connected population in Papatuanukue running a few tweeks in Auckland would save the country millions of $$$$$ and lower our carbon footprint. I say all road works on high traffic roads should be carried out at night there priorities should be safety first and traffic flowing freely even try Japanese traffic slow down models I see some more heads have been moved out of NZTA may be time for change they could have had links to oil barons.?????.
    That is cool having Rob Hewitt on The show education people about Wai water & safety swimming in Tangaroa. Tangaroa was looking after him when he spent 4 days lost in Tangaroa Ka pai.
    24 degrees here at the minute.
    A true green party is a left humane party one can spout being green and in the same breath party shout lock em up cut social security I see someone who jumped on my coat Tails for a lift cheat. Ka kite ano P.S The controversial water view tunnel in Auckland made life better for people who fly Alot just like national look after the 00.1%, before the 99.9 %

  20. Eco Maori 21

    Got to remember to edit my work there you go the Australian krypton busting laws are crap the kumara never tells how sweet it is

  21. Eco Maori 22

    Ki ora Newshub Global warming is hear and now one has to plan for the heat and work smart to avoid heat stress and Fires
    Good Wai quality is a must it makes Eco think we have hope when 80 % of people think good water quality is needed to avoid desaster with our water and environment. Road Rage not good is it. 3 topic,s linked climate change traffic jams and obesity it would be nice with the obesity subject that the real culprit is branded for that problem SUGAR.
    ECO MAORI knows how strong Tawhirirmate in around Aketio I think that is Cape turnagain Alex been in some big seas there.
    Its is awesome that Black panther has picked up a few prizes at the SAG awards . Ka kite ano

  22. Eco Maori 23

    I posted this 20 minutes ago????????????

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