Open mike 26/03/2022

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, March 26th, 2022 - 112 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 …

112 comments on “Open mike 26/03/2022 ”

  1. aom 1

    Oh fuck – we can't have a small island nation in the Pacific exercising its sovereign rights – the US told us we have to create a foreign affairs fuss! Fuck the fact that we are prepared to shit on an important trading partner after our ''ethnically sensitive" Minister of Foreign Affairs strode around proclaiming we had a mature relationship with China.

    A lot of fuss over what is laughingly called a military base in the Solomon Islands when as a five-eyes spy, we condone the master having 800 world-wide. What happened to the days when we aspired to be a moral nation. Oh yeah – that 's before we became a snivelling state of grovellers needing warm fuzzies from a senile, easily confused US President.

    • SPC 1.1

      So you welcome anyone not the US having a port in the Pacific for their nuclear powered and armed fleet?

      The whole point of our nuclear free Pacific policy was to keep this super power shit out of our region.

      What sort of nation turns atolls into islands in breach of international law – then militarises them, after saying it won't. One you should not trust that's who.

      • Jenny how to get there 1.1.1

        Can the coming world war be stopped?

        If we can unravel the imperialist causes of war.

        If we can regulate our unconstrained growth economy that is the root cause of expansionist wars.

        If we can untangle ourselves from economic and military imperialist alliances.

        Then this country can become a voice for peace and the keeping of the natural world and climate within natural limits.

      • aom 1.1.2

        What was missed? Where is the report that says China intends establishing a nuclear powered and armed fleet in the Solomon's or that the anti-nuke policy was to keep the US out of the Pacific?

        Talking about turning atolls into islands leads one to think about, for example, Diago Garcia. Makes conversion of a few atolls look pretty tame – especially when the US has over 800 bases around the world.

        Surely the Solomon's are entitled to exercise sovereignty, or is that only for an approved class of states?

        • SPC

          A base for the Chinese navy not excluding …

          Our nuclear vessel free port policy was part of a nuclear free South Pacific policy (our equivalent to the US-USSR agreement to withdrawal missiles from Europe).

          All for the principle of national sovereignty regardless of neighbours wish to keep the super power rivalry out it it – and your opine on Ukraine is …

          The fact is China is making a territorial claim in a major sea land and stealing from the economic zones of other nations – all in breach of international law. And it promised it would not militarise the islands. A deliberate lie.

          Trading partner or not, that is a concern.

          We will probably seek assurances from them, but should we trust what they say now?

          • aom
            1. Where did you get, "base for the Chinese navy not excluding …?" and what fits on the …… space?

            2. A territorial claim of a few tiny atolls are a real worry. Some aircraft carrier fleet may crash into them on wild nights while doing some 'freedom of access' cruises (sarc/)

            3. Seems most of the stealing from Pacific economic zones is done by humungous chartered fishing ships from Europe etc.

            4. Lost me there – got a link?

            5. What is your concern, trading or partner?

            6. Seems China's word is pretty much its bond, with friends. The other option is a well proven liar that seldom bothers about commitments, even to friends.

            • SPC

              The publicised arrangement is apparently without exclusion of nuclear powered ships, or those with nuclear weapons, and no exclusion from use of the ports in wartime.

              A clear lack of consideration of other nations in the area and their interests.

              China doing this is the regional equivalent of Ukraine joining NATO

              Turning atolls into islands and claiming them as part of territory in breach of international law, stealing the economic zones of surrounding nations (including harassment of their fishing fleets) and lying about plans to militarise them is the equivalent of annexing territory off Ukraine.


      • Blazer 1.1.3

        Maybe you should check out the history of the Marshal Islands.

        It's not a pretty story…for the locals,anyway.

    • Jenny how to get there 1.2

      There is no us, or them. It is all us.

      Global war like global warming is inevitable. The cause is the same for both. Infinite growth on a finite planet is impossible. Causing us not just to crash up against the physical limits of the planet, but up against each other.

      it doesn't matter which side started the war, or even where it first breaks out. The war is inevitable. It is also inevitable that now that war has broken out somewhere, that, that war will become a global conflict.

      The grotesque war being raged in Ukraine targeting civilians and civilian infrastructure, is the modern method of warfare. The fixed lines of conventional standing armies arrayed against each other last seen in the First World War and in preceding wars, first fully abandoned at Guernica, has been honed and perfected in numerous wars ever since.

      The destruction of Warsaw resembled the destruction of Guernica, The destruction of Dresden resembled the destruction of Warsaw, the destruction of Aleppo resembled the destruction of Warsaw, The destruction of Mariupol resembles all of them.

      • Ad 1.2.1

        Set fire to your keyboard so we don't have to read more of your fact-free catastrophist wankery.

        • SPC

          Real mature.

        • aom

          A well written and thoughtful opinion causes you to verbally blow your load like a premature ejaculator Ad. Says much about you and it ain't nice.

          Thanks Jenny for such a good read to start the day.

        • Jenny how to get there

          Hi Ad, sorry for upsetting you so. You can't please everybody I suppose. The fact is, I purposely limited myself to only one link in my comment, I was trying hard not to annoy Incognito, who seems to prefer opinion, more than debate backed up with linked based facts.

          Jenny how to get there

          19 March 2022 at 10:33 am

          Stop The War!

          The ends does not justify the means. Rotten means are indicative of Rotten….. ends…..

          [@ 7:18 am you posted your first absurdly long comment, the first comment in OM. Of course, it had too many links, as usual, and was held up in Auto-Moderation until a Moderator released it @ 9:48 am.

          @ 10:33 am you reposted the same comment here with only a very subtle change at the top without first checking that your initial comment had been approved and released.

          Three days ago I answered your question here ( as to how many links are allowed in a comment and you completely ignored the answer and instructive guidance 🙁

          Take the weekend off for wasting our precious time and link-spamming (cf. Policy) – Incognito]

          Jenny how to get there

          23 March 2022 at 1:05 pm

          Testing, testing. 123


          Hi Ad, If you really want to debate anything about my comment this morning, that displeased you. (Before I take up your suggestion that I burn my keyboard, ie ban myself). I will provide you with all the link based facts, that you could possibly want, to back up my comment. even at the risk of being banned again.

          [Are you kidding me? Really? Seriously?

          You’ve been spamming this site for a long time with ultra-long copy & pasta comments that often had too many links, which triggered the spam-trap and making work for Moderators. The limit is no more than 10 links per comment.

          You’ve been given clear educational feedback about your commenting behaviour. Many times. The central role of robust debate here on TS is opinion supported by facts (and links), not the other way round, such as long swaths of copied & pasta text and/or YT clips (short or tediously long) with a few fluffy words on the side dressed up as opinion, commentary, or reason to waste time on (all) the links and clips.

          It is not the all-or-nothing that you seem to think it is, but I’d prefer this from you any day: “Testing, testing. 123”.

          Learn from other commenters here, as most (!) do a great job of commenting and participating in debate here – Incognito]

        • Incognito

          That’s what I call a heartfelt appeal to reason devil

      • alwyn 1.2.2

        " Infinite growth on a finite planet is impossible".

        Why do you, and others, keep repeating this silly phrase? After all, as I am sure any mathematician would tell you, that to get to "infinite" growth would take an infinite time. Given that the Sun will expand out and destroy any life on earth within a finite period (albeit in about a billion years) we really don't have to worry about your concept of "infinite" growth do we?

        • Incognito

          Who’s being silly now?

          • alwyn

            Who is being silly?

            Well, if you don't understand that "infinite" doesn't mean just a very large number you are. I believe it was Einstein who said “Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the universe.”. Well anytime you start rabbiting on about "infinite" growth you are displaying human stupidity.

            • Drowsy M. Kram

              Unlimited growth on a limited planet is impossible.

              Better? Some prefer to 'live without limits', but (to paraphrase Dirty Harry): 'A civilisation’s got to know its limitations' – spaceship Earth and many of its inhabitants are showing signs of stress.


            • Incognito

              Your sillyness is infinite like a gift that keeps giving.

              • alwyn

                Well, we can see that Mathematics wasn't a subject that had any place in your education.

                • Incognito

                  You cannot see with your eyes closed.

                  • Poission

                    Not a problem for a problem solver like Pontryagin


                    • Incognito

                      Solving and creating problems are 2 different things 😉

                    • Poission

                      Not in mathematics,In pseudoscience such as social or political studies,it requires creating a problem (which may or not exist) and offering burnt toast to the gods of metaphysics as pennance.

                    • Incognito []

                      You just described alwyn‘s MO here on TS.

                    • alwyn

                      My reaction to that was best expressed by Tom Lehrer in his introduction to the song Alma

                      "It's people like that who make you realize how little you've accomplished. It is a sobering thought, for example, that when Mozart was my age, he had been dead for two years."

                      Of course it could have been like Dorothy Parker when she discovered that Incognito was dead. Her response was "How can they tell".

                      Edit. Sorry, sorry. I have misquoted the lady. She said it about Calvin Coolidge. But who would know the difference?

                • Drowsy M. Kram

                  Why do you, and others, keep repeating this silly phrase? After all, as I am sure any mathematician would tell you, that to get to "infinite" growth would take an infinite time.
                  – alwyn @1.2.2

                  Kudos, alwyn, for your precious contribution to the supertask debate – your knowledge & intellect is exceeded only by your twit.

                  Edit. Sorry, sorry. 'Wit', not 'twit', although in alwyn's case there’s precious little difference, imho wink

  2. Dennis Frank 2

    Janet Wilson, doing her media pro thing, contrasts the PM's speechifying style of two years ago & now:

    Where 2020’s speech was short and sharp – 1819 words in length – this week’s was long and rambling at 3193 words. It began with a history lesson. A history lesson we all knew only too well, because we’d been through it. So why tell us it in the first place? If only to be self-congratulatory and remind us that the Government had got us safely through the pandemic?

    The speech also falls prey to the curse of governments that have been in power for a while, by telling us too much detail in an explaining-is-losing kind of way. There was a lot of revisionary talk about the traffic light system, which any good sub-editor would have taken the red pen to, and the need for vaccine passes then but not now.

    Yeah, the PM was obviously intent on carefully closing the stable door several months after the horse had bolted.

    The speech, a miasma of unjoined-up thinking that dismantled the traffic light system while still retaining it, ended with: “This is not the end, but in some ways, it is a new beginning.”

    Except it wasn’t. The Greek chorus of experts that had until now sat behind the prime minister, backing up the science, went rogue. Microbiologist Siouxsie Wiles described the dropping of vaccine passes, scanning requirements and some mandates as “disappointing”, saying she’d prefer to have kept it. That was backed up by epidemiologist Professor Michael Baker.

    Hell hath no fury like public health experts scorned by their government, who had hitherto been legislating in accord with their consensus. Still, their linguistic restraint was admirable in the circumstances! Poll-driven govts must follow the sheeple, after all. The sheeple noticed that the protest had generated sufficient resonance in the public mind to affect a change of mood – so they stampeded through that gate.

    So the govt's exhibition of totalitarianism has produced a substantial loss of public support. Can they learn the lesson? Unlikely. Have you ever seen a liberal learn from experience? The PM's retreat into denial stimulated a stylistic critique from the media pro but the underlying psychology is more significant.

    Responding to changed circumstances with fresh initiative is good, but her failure to learn from the cause & effect relation that produced the loss of public confidence is bad. Leadership requires active intelligence that responds suitably, and in politics that means getting to the point fast and accurately. She failed that test – but where the hell are any competent advisors? Can't blame her alone. Clueless deputy PM & clueless deputy Labour leader must share it. And the Greens are still not helping.

    • Muttonbird 2.1

      Janet Wilson, as she has done for so many months is grasping at straws.

      This is the government getting out of the way after two years of heath measures. People are now dying, which is what Janet and her friends on the right and far right want.

      It is unfortunate but there was always going to be a point at which the water found its level since NZ was not going to be locked up forever.

      It's alway amusing when the opposition criticises the government for doing something which they themselves had been advocating for many months, ie allowing Covid deaths…

      …150 in the weeks since Omicron arrived. Three times the total before that. But #Omicronismild. You could almost stick it in a syringe and call it a vaccine…

    • Blade 2.2

      l'm fascinated by successive governments who always provide the public with a plethora of initiatives to be implemented once elected. But they never think of sitting down and dismantling the time lines of previous governments to see at what stage of governance problems start becoming apparent.

      In fact it's no secret after two terms in office, a third term is usually a government's swan song as public boredom and discontent grows.

      Politics – 3 strikes and you are out.

      • Dennis Frank 2.2.1

        Yes but the current question is whether the current govt will even get to a third term. Poor recent performance has produced polling that introduces the question.

        Focus on the PM isn't a good idea. Too traditional. The principle of collective leadership also applies. What Labour is currently displaying is total lack of support for the PM from within their ranks. Those with nominal leadership positions are first in the firing line: Grant & Kelvin! However the Green co-leaders are also failing.

  3. Puckish Rogue 3

    Back masking, heavy metal, gangster rap, D&D, Harry Potter, video games, comic books and now…working out

    • Sabine 3.1

      Gangsta Rap lol, so passee, find yourself some Country Rap, now that is eye opening.

  4. Molly 4

    Reading a Twitter thread about a woman's partner, working in Poland as an aid worker for the Ukrainian refugees. He mentioned the lack of administration and safeguarding in terms of private citizens turning up offering accommodation and support.

    Genevieve Gluckman covers the crisis capitalism (and explotation) on her Substack:

    Human traffickers have previously abducted women and girls from conflict-affected areas in Ukraine for sex and labor trafficking, according to a 2021 U.S. State Department report. In addition, research from human rights bodies has consistently found that displaced, refugee, and migrant women and children are at an increased risk of human trafficking.

    Recently, a charity worker helping refugees flee Ukraine told HuffPost UK, “I have seen numerous dodgy men standing on site for hours looking for victims. You can tell by the distant look in their eyes, they won’t look at you, but they are scanning the crowds of refugees for victims,” he added.

    Anna Dabrowska, director of human rights at the NGO Homo Faber, said men at the border were approaching women with children offering them safe accommodation in Germany. When the women asked police for advice, the men would quickly disappear from the station.

    “For predators and human traffickers, the war in Ukraine is not a tragedy,” Secretary-General of the UN António Guterres recently commented. “It’s an opportunity – and women and children are the targets.”

    • Puckish Rogue 4.1

      Sorry but can't go past a Graham Lineham post without adding something:

      [The Spanish archer has arrived and given you the weekend off. Your reply to Molly’s serious comment was an infantile piss-take YT clip and you have been skating on thin ice before this (e.g. yesterday in OM). I don’t need the extra work this weekend – Incognito]

    • DB Brown 4.2

      Authorities chasing these mongrels should see this as an opportunity to observe exactly who these men are and follow them home, through the web, their contacts.. get em!

    • Sabine 4.3

      Already women and girls have gone missing. Quite a few actually. Warnings about sex trafficking came from Berlin, Poland, England etc. But that was to be expected. And hence why many time in war times men try to get out first and then have their wife and children follow.
      In Germany they hand out little leaflets with ‘prostitution is legal’ to arriving women and others.
      disclaimer: women and girls are adult human females and child human females irrespective of their 'self id'.

    • RedLogix 4.4

      Yes I have been wondering about this – the threat is obvious. This is one matter where EU authorities absolutely need to expand their thinking and step up. This is likely the largest and most rapid refugee crisis in all of human history and in it's own right demands an extraordinary response.

      Nothing will more rapidly undermine solidarity than accounts of Ukrainian women and children being exploited or worse by predatory filth.

  5. SPC 5

    It seems Xi Jinping is to prioritise (economic and political) security before global warming.

    China looks set to reduce its imports of gas this year and use more local coal (while also increasing renewable energy capacity for the longer term).

    One reason would be price, another geo-political given sanctions on Russian gas and playing the nuetral (and also energy independence given the potential for sanctions on China over … ).


  6. Adrian Thornton 6

    Kim Jong-un rocking his new cool look, launches the new Hwasong-17 intercontinental ballistic missile….I would wager a bet that no missile in history has been treated to such a over the top, flamboyant launch….

  7. Stephen D 7

    The subject of sports washing bothers me.

    I love sport, I’ve either played, managed, coached and watched as long as I can remember.

    But the sight of Saudi Arabia, China, USA, England, and others using sport to polish their image in the mind of the world makes me feel sick.

    At what point do sports administrators decide that principles override money. I’m not holding my breath.

  8. weston 8

    What did everyone think of the rudd interview this morn ? I really admire the way Kim reads out the feedback from her show positive an neg warts n all .Rudd's managed to garner quite a lot of publicity for his new book but having kissingers name on the cover would be sufficiently offputting to deter not a few readers i would have thought !.

    [Link required]

  9. tsmithfield 9

    Russia has decided to focus its efforts on the eastern part of Ukraine now.

    That is code for Russia is getting its arse handed to it everywhere else in Ukraine, and so it should settle for something that might be achievable. But, that might be too little too late I think.

    • Hongi Ika 9.1

      Putin tried to take too bigger bite of the cherry straight up, his eyes were bigger than his stomach ?

      • tsmithfield 9.1.1

        Yes. He should have started by capturing the south. He could have quickly captured all the port cities if he had focussed all his forces there.

        Then he would have been able to strangle the Ukrainian economy as they would not have been able to export their commodities very easily.

        Also, it wouldn't have given the west time to build up momentum with sanctions etc and arming the Ukranians. It would probably have been the west huffing and puffing as usual without doing much.

        But the situation now is that they don't control Odessa, and probably won't. Also, it looks like the Russians could lose Kershon.

        Now, if they retreat back to Donbass they will have to maintain a strong military presence there in the face of huge sanctions. Also, they will have to deal with an insurgency armed to the teeth who will be trying to drive them out of Donbas and Crimea.

        Also, it looks like large numbers of Russian forces around Kiev are in danger of being encircled by the Ukranians. So there may well be some mass surrenders up there.

        So, not the best outcome for them.

  10. joe90 10

    Human immunity is dead in the water when confronted with a virus that's evolved to evade superior rodent immunity. Who woulda thunk it.

    So-called "natural immunity" against COVID-19 has always been a dodgy argument for avoiding vaccination during the pandemic. But amid omicron, natural immunity is clearly rubbish.

    Unvaccinated people who recover from an omicron coronavirus variant infection are left with paltry levels of neutralizing antibodies against omicron. They also have almost no neutralizing antibodies against any of five other coronavirus variants, including delta. People who were vaccinated before getting an omicron infection, however, have strong protection against all five variants, and they have some of the highest levels of neutralizing antibodies against omicron.

    • Drowsy M. Kram 10.1

      Interesting – thanks.

    • Poission 10.2

      With reinfection , the case for herd immunity is dismissed.

      And the idea that this allows are removal of constraints,such as mask wearing in the UK now sees a higher rate of hospitilisation (record admissions) and 1 in 11 infected in scotland.

      In Scotland, the percentage of people testing positive for COVID-19 continued to increase in the week ending 20 March 2022; we estimate that 473,800 people in Scotland had COVID-19 (95% credible interval: 436,100 to 512,500), equating to 9.00% of the population or around 1 in 11 people.

      On the 1 of April the UK removes free testing,Has closed down the NHS covid testing labs,so there will be a significant inability to provide high quality data.


    • mauī 10.3

      Then when you read the actual study being referred to, the main thrust of it is that unvaccinated people infected with omicron don't have antibodies for the other variants, which is what you would expect if they have never previously contracted those variants. This is summed up in their conclusion:

      "Despite certain limitations of this study, including the small sample size and retrospective study design (Table S7), our data support the hypothesis that the omicron BA.1 variant is an extremely potent immune-escape variant that shows little cross-reactivity with the earlier variants. Therefore, unvaccinated persons who are infected with the omicron BA.1 variant only (without previous SARS-CoV-2 infection) might not be sufficiently protected against infection with a SARS-CoV-2 variant other than omicron BA.1; for full protection, vaccination is warranted."

      The bits in the arsetechnica article "natural immunity is clearly rubbish" and the unvaccinated being left with "paltry levels of neutralizing antibodies".. might well then just be propaganda?

      • DB Brown 10.3.1

        Paltry's not a word a science report would/should use but significantly less protection seems accurate.

        Now if I gave you insurance protecting you from fire, flood, wind, earthquake and in laws – that's a pretty good cover.

        The cover for earthquake only, some would say, is paltry by comparison.

      • Incognito 10.3.2

        … which is what you would expect if they have never previously contracted those variants.

        Did the vaccines induces antibodies against all variants so far, with the possible exception of Omicron BA.1? Indeed, they did.

        Did (most) unvaccinated people who were infected have antibodies against new(er) variants, with the possible exception of Omicron BA.1? Indeed, they did.

        Omicron BA.1 is the exception that proves the rule that usually there’s at least some level of cross-reactivity with different but related variants of the same virus.

  11. tsmithfield 11

    More evidence of why the Ukrainian farmers are now the 5th biggest army in the world: smiley

  12. Blade 12

    A little weird this one : Does anyone drink distilled water on a regular basis? And do you have your own distiller?

    • Robert Guyton 12.1

      Do you?

    • Blazer 12.2

      Mine is triple distilled.

    • mac1 12.3

      M. K. J0SEPH Distilled Water

      …………Consider now the nature of distilled

      Water which has boiled and left behind

      In the retort rewarding sediment

      Of salts and toxins. Chemically pure of course

      (No foreign bodies here) but to the taste

      Tasteless and flat. Let it spill on the ground

      Leach out its salts, accumulate its algae,

      Be living: the savour's in impurity……"

      Joseph was of course writing about our colonial legacy in a poem about Blenheim.

      So I don't like my water distilled….

      • Incognito 12.3.1

        Distilling water consumes a lot of power.

        • mac1

          And colonialism consumes a lot of power, to produce a boring product. In an article once I described it thus, "The history of Marlborough is the story of water usage and rights from first Māori colonisation in Aotearoa at the Wairau Bar till modern viticulture. Joseph was prescient in saying that Marlborough's history was like water. But how much?

          He did not write of what is now rightly becoming more general knowledge. Our history is much more. But then it had been water distilled in a colonial retort, sanitised, made potable and safe."

      • Blade 12.3.2

        Then perhaps Maori and you are missing out on its many health benefits… or lack thereof, depending on what side of the fence you are on:

        Removing mental fog for one.

        • mac1

          You might have to explain that one?

        • McFlock

          Meh. same as what the raw water nutters claim.

          Probably just drinking more water, being careful of hydration levels.

          Sometimes I'll drink filtered or even bottled water for a change (or the bottle), but it's all much of a muchness.

          • Blade

            What's raw water? Distilled water isn't ordinary water. It has all minerals and added crap removed. It is a solvent. It should have a TDS reading of zero.

            There's a huge debate about whether DW leaches minerals from the body.

            Some say crap, minerals in water can't be used by the body. Others say minerals are needed by the body to act as electrical conductors.

            Hence my post to see if anyone had been drinking DS for years, and had they encountered any problems? Personally, I feel great on the stuff. I haven't drunk tap water since they added chlorine to our water supply.

            • McFlock

              Raw water is a trend at the other end of the BS water industry: completely untreated and gathered from streams and suchlike, shilled as natural and wonderfully healthy.

              I understand the process of distillation. When you're getting into absolutely pure, it can dissolve a "wrench" (spanner) in five years. But I doubt home distillers would get to that spec.

              If minerals in the water can't be used by the body, then fluoridation isn't a problem for the anti-fluoride mob and lead isn't a problem for our aging water infrastructure.

              On the one hand, distilled water won't have giardia and suchlike in it (the reason the chlorine is there). On the other, the only way you'll get trace elements like fluoride is through food. Makes a balanced diet more important, including sourcing food from overseas to balance any soil deficiencies we have here (it's why our table salt is iodised).

              • Blade


                I believe the Russians are also deep into ultra pure water technology, both for applications in health and military applications.

            • RedLogix

              OK I worked in the bulk water supply industry for almost a decade.

              We add about 0.8ppm free chlorine at the treatment plant.

              By the time it gets to the reservoirs it has dropped to about 0.4ppm

              By the time it gets to your taps it is usually less than 0.2ppm free chlorine. That level is harmless.

              It is not the chlorine that is the problem, it is the organochlorides that are the byproduct of it's disinfection action which have the potential to be carcinogenic. It is not a very high risk, but nor has anyone demonstrated a direct cause and effect, but it is taken seriously all the same.

              The primary role of the treatment plant is to remove as much organics from the water before we add chlorine to absolutely minimise this issue. We typically use UV spectroscopic instruments to accurately measure the organics arriving in the plant, then carefully manage the flocculant dosing to get the delivery water as close to a measured zero organics as possible, before the chlorine is added. This is usually the last step before it leaves the plant. Again this chlorine addition process is carefully measured and controlled within pretty tight limits. (Also this is when any fluoride is added as well.)

              Then at key points in the distribution system we will also continuously measure three critical variables – pH, Turbidity and Free Chlorine content. If the pH is within a certain range – 7.4 – 8.1 from memory – and the turbidity is less than a certain value, and the free chlorine is within range – then we can be very certain the water is safe to drink. Samples are also physically drawn at least daily and lab analysed in much further detail.

              This data is stored and analysed comprehensively and in order to maintain NZDWS certification an annual report and audit of performance must be submitted. All this compliance activity is taken very seriously by the industry in my experience – although I cannot rule out that some smaller councils may struggle with resourcing and skills from time to time – in general the big city operators are by world standards extremely good in NZ.

              • Blade

                Interesting reply. My chlorine issue is more about smell and taste. My city had great drinking water until they decided to chlorinate. I remember the first time I made coffee with chlorinated water, I spat it out, it was that foul. My hair became dank and lifeless, and even my distiller, with a VOC filter. couldn't remove the smell or taste. I now use well water.

                I understand there are different types of chlorine, one of those cannot be filtered from water if I understand things correctly. That may be the type my council is using?

                Previously I had rung my council up, and they put me on to a water treatment worker who told me they were using a 35% solution of chlorine ( I should have asked for context). Looking at your ratios, I'm wondering if my council have a clue as to what they are doing.

                • Blazer

                  'My hair became dank and lifeless, '

                  Have you tried….Pantene?-or maybe a Lux …cut!

                  • Blade

                    Is Pam's family value shampoo any good? I hear it also doubles as carwash and flea treatment for cats.

                • RedLogix

                  My chlorine issue is more about smell and taste.

                  It is not the chlorine you can smell or taste, but the by products of its disinfection action (DBP's). In fact if you have free chlorine in absolutely clean water there is no smell at all – but a swimming pool where there is plenty of disinfection going on will have a very distinctive odour.

                  Keep in mind that chlorine ions are not dangerous like the gas is. After all table salt is 50% ionic chlorine and the ocean is full of it.

                  I understand there are different types of chlorine,

                  Yes there are. It can be added as pure free chlorine which is the time tested method that I think is still dominant in NZ, or as a compound mix of chlorine and ammonia called chloramine which is now dominant in Aus and the US as far as I know. There are pros and cons to both.

                  Aquatic life for example is very sensitive to chloramine treated water – it will kill a tank full of pet goldfish overnight. And while chloramine doesn't produce as much in the way of DBP's it still does – and produces a much wider range of them (many thousands) albeit in tiny, tiny quantities, but most have never been researched or understood from a medical perspective. The NZ approach is that you are better off removing the organics before adding chlorine in any form.

                  The third wild card factor is that some small fraction of the population are what we called 'supertasters' – people who could detect tiny amounts and changes in the water quality. We had one staff member who could reliably tell us exactly what water source we were using and from which plant – and he was very useful to help us improve our treatment processes and algorithms to minimise this impact. We thought they might be around 1 – 2% of the population – so you could easily be one.

                  Disclaimer – I merely designed and wrote the control systems for all of this and what I've outlined here is only the fundamentals that I absorbed along the way. Actual specialists would have a lot more to add.

    • Byd0nz 13.1

      Yep. There are two sides to every conflict, but of course mainstream media don’t believe in free speech so very few people worldwide are able to get some sort of balance.
      Good on TS for allowing free speech, though there are many here who are in denial of acceptance of the ‘ other points of view’ and will respond with some sort of dismissive vitriol. However those who only believe in a one sided argument will continue in their delusionment.

    • Jenny how to get there 13.2

      The ridiculous unintentional dark humour of General Sergei Rudskoy, Russia's version of Baghdad Bob.

      ….The course of the operation confirmed the validity of this decision.

      It is conducted by the General Staff in strict accordance with the approved plan.

      The tasks are carried out taking into account minimizing losses among personnel and minimizing damage to civilians….

      Thank you Franscesca for providing us this exposure of the Russian high command's out of touch with reality. We can only hope that for their own people's sake that they don't actually believe this themselves.

  13. Joe90 15

    Actually, he was sipping tea as he was on his way down from a very high window when he had his heart attack.

  14. Jenny how to get there 16



    Stiff resistance in Ukraine, protests on the home front.

    Now this:

    Russian troops attack own commanding officer after suffering heavy losses

    By Lexi Lonas- 03/25/22 03:20 PM EDT

    Ukrainian journalist Roman Tsymbaliuk said in a post on Facebook that Russian Col. Yuri Medvedev was attacked after fighting in Ukraine left nearly half of the men in the 37th Motor Rifle Brigade dead, The Washington Post reported.

    Tsymbaliuk said the brigade injured both of Medvedev's legs by hitting him with a tank, causing him to be hospitalized, according to the newspaper.

    The incident occurred roughly 30 miles from Kyiv, in Makariv, Ukraine, the Post reported. The country reportedly retook the town this week after Russia gained control of it earlier in the war.

    A senior Western official told the newspaper that he thinks Medvedev has died, saying the incident shows the low morale among the Russian troops in Ukraine.

    Putin's military incursion into Ukraine has failed.

    It is hard to say how this will play out.

    Will a negotiated settlement be sought?

    Alternatively, will Putin order his doomed army to fight on, with massive losses on both sides, until Russia's ultimate crushing defeat?

    The course of this war is tied to the personality of Russian dictator, Vladimir Putin..

    US President, Biden has called for Putin’s removal from office. Unlikely as it may seem. Whether by palace coup, or mass internal revolt.

    If the war continues in its present form, I wouldn’t rule anthing out.

    • Dennis Frank 16.1

      Yeah, it reminded me of that too:

      Documented and suspected fragging incidents totaled nearly nine hundred from 1969 to 1972. [from the wiki]

      Think it was from Michael Herr's book that I recall it.

      described by no less a critic than John Le Carré as “the best book ever written about men at war in our time”.

      He met soldiers with a left pocket full of Dexedrine, the “upper” officially administered by the army to get them into battle, and a right pocket full of “downers” to get them through it.

      Re Ukraine, looks like Putin has a pivot back to the east in mind. If we take yesterday's dual propaganda releases by Russian generals seriously. Note their suggestions that the Ukrainians are bombing their own hospitals, women, & children.

    • Adrian Thornton 16.2

      My comment to Joe90 above, applies to you as well….you do know that everything you said and linked to above comes from western sources, who all believe they themselves are at war with Russia, so by extension everything they say has to be considered war propaganda now?…. nothing in your comment is verifiable at this point.

      "A senior Western official told the newspaper"

      "Ukrainian journalist Roman Tsymbaliuk said"

      ….seriously?…come on.

      • Incognito 16.2.1

        This is an excellent comment!

      • Jenny how to get there 16.2.2

        We see the same old propaganda playbook the Russians used in Syria, "…the Ukrainians are bombing their own people to make us look bad," bull-(cough)-shit.

        The fact is the Russian aggressor is losing, and losing badly. A point I notice you don't dispute.

        +….. nothing in your comment is verifiable at this point." Adrian Thornton

        I am glad you qualified your statement.

        And you are right, of course. And I thought hard on whether I should comment on it. But this reported incidence of fragging in the Russian forces, was not just covered by Western sources, but also by India's Wion News.

        Last week, videos from Wion News, which prides itself on even handed reporting of this war, was blocked from you tube, for posting reports favourable of Russia.

        • Adrian Thornton

          Thanks J.h.t.g.there, that's all I am asking for from TS community… some thought and independent research that can be called on if needed, to verify their comments….well verify to some degree anyway, as none of us can know what is really happing (or has happened) and won’t until well after this war is over..a fact I am sure you are well aware of.

          I am an enemy of Putin (and was of Trump I might add), but the endless mindless, thoughtless, uncritical regurgitating of (mainly) western MSM media propaganda on both those subjects is infuriating..I mean it's not as if those two and their horrible projects haven't got enough real issues to draw on right?…why do so many smart people here constantly resort to speculation and such obvious logic bending half truths all the friggin' time!…that is what I want to know?

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  • He stood up to Muldoon and Lange and the Fji army
    Gerald Hensley, who died aged 88 on Saturday, was the key official who presided over the tumultuous events that followed the election of the Lange Labour Government in 1984. He was also instrumental in helping a key Fijian official escape the country during one of the 1987 coups. A diplomat ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    7 days ago
  • At a glance – Has Arctic sea ice returned to normal?
    On February 14, 2023 we announced our Rebuttal Update Project. This included an ask for feedback about the added "At a glance" section in the updated basic rebuttal versions. This weekly blog post series highlights this new section of one of the updated basic rebuttal versions and serves as a ...
    1 week ago
  • Halo dunia!
    Selamt datang di WordPress. Ini adalah pos pertama Anda. Sunting atau hapus, kemudian mulai menulis! ...
    1 week ago
  • The PM wants a turnaround
    As a treat today I have lined up a favourite in the music slot. I love Turnaround, I cannot hear it too often, and I feel in need of a treat when I make myself listen to the Prime Minister the way I did this morning.He too, has favourites that ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • The PM wants a turnaround
    As a treat today I have lined up a favourite in the music slot. I love Turnaround, I cannot hear it too often, and I feel in need of a treat when I make myself listen to the Prime Minister the way I did this morning.He too, has favourites that ...
    More than a fieldingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • ELE LUDEMANN: Trusting locals
    Ele Ludemann writes- A government-knows-best and predilection for central control was another unfortunate feature of the 2017-2023 Labour governments. One of the worst polices as a result of that was what started as Three Waters and became several more. The National-led government is much more trusting of locals ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    1 week ago
  • Legislation to flush away Three Waters has become a certainty – but we must wait for details on th...
    Buzz from the Beehive A  three-day information drought was broken, just after Point of Order published yesterday’s Buzz from the Beehive, and two significant ministerial announcements were made. First, the Budget will be delivered on 30 May, telling us which genuine savings have been made by eliminating waste and which ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    1 week ago
  • Rise of the Lobbyists.
    An unpopular opinion, I love Auckland.Not so much the transport or the house prices - those are pretty dire. But there’s a lot to like. We’ve a vibrant, multicultural city in a beautiful location with, mostly, friendly locals. From the native bush of the Waitakeres to the Gulf islands, it’s ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • The holes in National’s water reform pipes
    Young renters just have to watch on as pipes keep failing and the Government and councils point fingers at each other, because all the incentives are for ratepayers to block rates increases, water meters, water charges and the creation of new entities. File Photo: Lynn GrievesonTL;DR: The National-ACT-NZ First coalition ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago

  • Greater support for social workers
    The Coalition Government is enhancing the professionalism of the social work sector and supporting the vulnerable people who rely on them, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston says.  The Social Workers Registration Legislation Amendment Bill passed its third reading in Parliament today. It amends the Social Workers Registration Legislation ...
    8 hours ago
  • Government delivers greater freedom and choice for sick New Zealanders
    The coalition government is delivering on its commitment to making principled decisions by getting rid of red tape that doesn’t make sense and allowing sick New Zealanders greater freedom and choice to purchase effective cold and flu medicines. A bill amending the Misuse of Drugs Act 1975 is being introduced, and changes to the Medicines ...
    15 hours ago
  • Government begins reset of welfare system
    The Coalition Government is taking early action to curb the surge in welfare dependency that occurred under the previous government by setting out its expectations around employment and the use of benefit sanctions, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston says. In 2017, 60,588 sanctions were applied to beneficiaries who ...
    1 day ago
  • State of the Nation
    Ka nui te mihi kia koutou. Kia ora, good morning, talofa, malo e lelei, bula vinaka, da jia hao, namaste, sat sri akal, assalamu alaikum. Thank you for coming to my first State of the Nation as Prime Minister. Thank you for coming to a speech where I don’t just ...
    3 days ago
  • West Coast tourism attractions officially open
    Regional Development Minister Shane Jones will attend the official opening of two highly anticipated tourism projects on the West Coast today – Pike29 Memorial Track, dedicated to the memory of the Pike River miners, and Pounamu Pathway. “The Pike29 Memorial Track is a way to remember and honour the men ...
    5 days ago
  • Independent ferry service advisory group in place
    Appointments to the Ministerial Advisory Group tasked with providing independent advice and assurance on the future of KiwiRail’s inter-island ferry service have been made, State Owned Enterprises Minister Paul Goldsmith says. “It’s important for New Zealand that KiwiRail is focused on ensuring safe, resilient, and reliable ferry services over the ...
    5 days ago
  • Joint statement from the Prime Ministers of Australia, Canada, and New Zealand
    The Prime Ministers of Australia, Canada and New Zealand today issued the following statement on reports of Israel’s planned military operation in Rafah. We are gravely concerned by indications that Israel is planning a ground offensive into Rafah.   A military operation into Rafah would be catastrophic. About 1.5 million Palestinians ...
    5 days ago
  • Govt will deliver on expanded breast screening
    The coalition Government has made the first steps in delivering on its promise to  extend free breast screening to women aged 70-74, Health Minister Shane Reti says. “As part of the 100 day plan, the Government has now met with officials and discussed what is needed in order for the ...
    5 days ago
  • Government announces woolshed roadshows in support of sheep farmers
    The Government celebrates National Lamb Day (15 February 24) and congratulates sheep farmers on the high-quality products they continue to produce. Agriculture Minister McClay hosted bipartisan celebrations of National Lamb Day with industry representatives at Parliament this week to mark the anniversary of the first frozen lamb exports that left ...
    6 days ago
  • Speech: Address to the NZ Economics Forum
    It’s great to be back at the New Zealand Economics Forum. I would like to acknowledge everyone here today for your expertise and contribution, especially the Pro Vice-Chancellor, Head of the Waikato Management School, economists, students and experts alike. A year has passed since I was last before you, and ...
    6 days ago
  • Government tackling high construction costs
    The Government is focused on reducing sky-high construction costs to make it more affordable to build a home, Building and Construction Minister Chris Penk says.  Stats NZ data shows the cost of building a house has increased by 41 per cent since 2019, making housing even more unaffordable for Kiwi ...
    6 days ago
  • Labour’s Three Waters legislation repealed
    The Coalition Government’s legislative plan to address longstanding issues with local water infrastructure and service delivery took an important step today, with the repeal of Labour’s divisive and unpopular Three Waters legislation, Local Government Minister Simeon Brown says. “Repealing this legislation is a necessary first step in implementing our Local ...
    6 days ago
  • Cost of living support for beneficiary households
    The Coalition Government is delivering on its commitment to ease the cost-of-living by increasing main benefit rates in line with inflation and ensuring the Minimum Family Tax Credit threshold remains aligned with this change, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston says. The Social Security (Benefits Adjustment) and Income Tax ...
    7 days ago
  • Government announces agriculture delegations to better support Primary sector
    The coalition Government has announced ministerial delegations to support key areas across the Primary sector to deliver for New Zealand’s food and fibre sector, Agriculture Minister Todd McClay announced today. “I will be supported in my roles as Minister of Agriculture, Trade, Forestry and Hunting and Fishing, by three Associate ...
    1 week ago
  • Waikato MoU reinforces Govt’s commitment to increase NZ doctors
    The Government has taken an important step forward in addressing a critical shortage of New Zealand-trained doctors, with today’s signing of a Memorandum of Understanding for a third medical school, Minister of Health Dr Shane Reti has announced.  “Today’s signing by the Ministry of Health and the University of Waikato ...
    1 week ago
  • Speech – Lunar New Year 2024
    Annyeonghaseyo, greetings and welcome all. It is my pleasure as the Minister for Ethnic Communities to welcome you to the first Lunar New Year Event in Parliament. Thank you to our emcees for greeting us in the different languages that represent the many cultures that celebrate the Lunar New Year. ...
    1 week ago
  • More funding to Hawke’s Bay and Tairāwhiti
    Urgent work to clean-up cyclone-affected regions will continue, thanks to a $63 million boost from the Government for sediment and debris removal in Hawke’s Bay and Tairāwhiti.                                                                                                   The funding will help local councils continue urgent work removing and disposing of sediment and debris left from Cyclone Gabrielle.   “This additional ...
    1 week ago
  • Budget will be delivered on 30 May
    Plans to deliver tax relief to hard-working New Zealanders, rebuild business confidence and restore the Crown’s finances to order will be unveiled on 30 May, Finance Minister Nicola Willis says. The plans will be announced in the Budget which is currently being developed by Ministers.  “The last government’s mismanagement of ...
    1 week ago
  • Government advances Local Water Done Well
    The Coalition Government is continuing work to restore council ownership and control of water assets by repealing Three Waters and appointing a Technical Advisory Group to provide expert advice on the implementation of Local Water Done Well, Local Government Minister Simeon Brown says. “The Government will pass a bill to ...
    1 week ago
  • New diplomatic appointments
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has today announced five new diplomatic appointments.  "Strong and effective diplomacy to protect and advance our interests in the world is needed now more than ever," Mr Peters says.  “We are delighted to appoint senior diplomats from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade to these ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Speech to the Committee for Auckland
    It is great to be here today at this event as Minister for Auckland and Minister ofTransport. Let me start by acknowledging each one of you and thanking the Committee forAuckland for hosting this event and inviting me to speak here today. The Committee for Auckland has been a symbol ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Getting Transport Back on Track in Auckland
    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has today confirmed his high-level transport priorities for Auckland, in the lead up to releasing the draft Government Policy Statement on Land Transport. “Our economic growth and productivity are underpinned by a transport network that enables people and freight to move around safely and efficiently. At ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government to axe Auckland Regional Fuel Tax
    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has confirmed that the Auckland Regional Fuel Tax will end on 30 June 2024. “Today, I can confirm that the Government has agreed to remove the Auckland Regional Fuel Tax in line with our coalition commitments, and legislation will be introduced to parliament to repeal the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Minister Calls for Work to Tackle Kina Barrens
    Changes to fishing rules and a significant science programme are being undertaken to address kina barrens, says Minister for Oceans and Fisheries Shane Jones. “There has been tremendous interest from iwi, communities and recreational fishers who had raised concerns about such kina infestations being a major threat to Northland’s marine ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government law and order crackdown begins
    The coalition Government is making good on its promise to restore law and order by removing government funding for Section 27 reports and abolishing the previous Labour Government’s prison reduction target, Justice Minister Paul Goldsmith and Corrections Minister Mark Mitchell say.  “In recent years, the development of Section 27 reports ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Greater focus on getting people into work
    The coalition government will refocus employment efforts and the welfare system so that supporting people who can work into jobs is the number one priority, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston says. “Of concern in the labour market statistics released by Stats NZ today was the number of youth not ...
    2 weeks ago
  • One year on, NZ appeals for release of Phillip Mehrtens
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has appealed to those holding New Zealand pilot Phillip Mehrtens in remote Papua, Indonesia, to release him immediately.  Phillip Mehrtens was taken hostage a year ago on 7 February in Paro, Papua, while providing vital air links and supplies to remote communities. “We strongly urge those holding ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Ministers reaffirm Pacific connections this week
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters and Health Minister and Minister for Pacific Peoples Dr Shane Reti are reaffirming the importance of New Zealand’s connections to the Pacific by visiting Tonga, Cook Islands and Samoa this week.  “New Zealand enjoys strong and long-standing relationships with our Pacific partners - especially in Polynesia, where we ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Rt Hon Christopher Luxon – Waitangi speech
    E ngā mana, e ngā reo, e ngā iwi, rau rangatira ma. Tēnā koutou katoa. He tino mihi ki te mana whenua o tēnei rohe.  Mihi mai, mihi mai, mihi mai. Te whare e tū nei, tēnā koe.                               He-wāhi whakahirahira tēnei mō Aotearoa. Ka huri nga whakaaro, ki nga mate. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government awards primary sector scholarships to students
    Six university students studying agriculture and science have been awarded scholarships as part of the coalition Government’s efforts to boost on-the-ground support for farmers and growers. “The coalition Government is committed to improving support and operating conditions for farmers and growers,” Agriculture Minister Todd McClay says. “We’re backing a range ...
    2 weeks ago
  • High Court Judge appointed
    Attorney-General Judith Collins today announced the appointment of Wellington Barrister Jason Scott McHerron as a High Court Judge. Justice McHerron graduated from the University of Otago with a BA in English literature in 1994 and an LLB in 1996. From 1996 to 1999 he worked as a solicitor in the ...
    3 weeks ago
  • New Zealand provides further humanitarian support to Gaza and the West Bank
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has announced that New Zealand is providing a further $5 million to respond to the extreme humanitarian need in Gaza and the West Bank.  “The impact of the Israel-Hamas conflict on civilians is absolutely appalling,” Mr Peters says.  “That is why New Zealand has contributed $15 ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Government consults on expanding COVID-19 Inquiry terms of reference
    The Government is delivering on its commitment to enable public input into expanding the scope of the Royal Commission of Inquiry into COVID-19 Lessons, says Internal Affairs Minister Brooke van Velden. “As committed to in both the ACT-National and NZ First-National coalition agreements, the public will be given the opportunity ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Tai Tokerau Water Boost
    A further $5 million loan has been advanced to the Tai Tokerau Water Trust for Te Waihekeora Reservoir, Regional Development Minister Shane Jones says.  “Water is a precious resource, Kānoa – Regional Development and Investment Unit at the Ministry of Business, Innovation, and Employment have done amazing work in the ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Fast track consenting in the fast lane
    The Government is progressing changes to resource management laws as part of its 100 Day Action Plan, with the first steps taken to establish a new fast-track consenting one-stop shop regime. “This new regime, which forms part of National’s coalition agreement with New Zealand First, will improve the speed and ...
    3 weeks ago
    Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Defence the Hon Richard Marles MP and Minister for Foreign Affairs Senator the Hon Penny Wong hosted New Zealand Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Rt Hon Winston Peters MP and Minister of Defence Hon Judith Collins KC MP on 1 February ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Minimum wage set for cautious increase
    The adult minimum wage rate will increase by 2 per cent to $23.15 an hour from 1 April 2024, Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Brooke van Velden announced today. “This Government is committed to striking the right balance between protecting the incomes of our lowest paid workers and maintaining labour ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Increased security improves ED safety over summer
    Increasing the number of security staff in emergency departments (EDs) over the busy Christmas and New Year period improved the safety of both staff and patients, Health Minister Dr Shane Reti says. 200 additional security staff (93 FTEs) were provided to 32 EDs in response to concerns raised by ED ...
    3 weeks ago

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