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Open mike 26/12/2022

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, December 26th, 2022 - 51 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 …

51 comments on “Open mike 26/12/2022 ”

  1. Jenny are we there yet 1

    Pussy Riot anti-war rap as a Christmas present to all the pro-war imperialist scumbags.

    • mikesh 1.1

      Yawn. Ho hum.

      • Jenny are we there yet 1.1.1

        I am feel sorry for you Mikesh, that you find Russian anti-war political activists a yawn.

        Maybe you prefer some blood thirsty pro-war Russian song.

        Or maybe you only think that the Pussy Riot anti-war rap is "ho hum" because you don't have to suffer the grief of living in exile away from your homeland and family like they have to, where if they were at home they could get 15 years in jail for their words or songs.

        Or maybe it is because you can't understand their Russian lyrics that you are bored.

        So here they are. Just for you. An amended version with subtitles in English so you can understand it.

        [deleted long lyrics]

        [The complete English “Lyrycs” are in initial link @ 1. There’s no need to dump a long copy & pasta here to force another commenter who clearly is less receptive to read it and/or view the YT clip and for others to have to scroll past. If you insist on incessantly forcing your own personal views on others perhaps it is time you start your own blog – Incognito]

  2. bwaghorn 2


    Company's that's about 7 months behind want massive compensation for 5 week covid delay. That fletcher is involved doesn't surprise

    • Sacha 2.1

      Interesting to see that the cost has already sneaked over a billion. Could have restored Northland’s entire rail system for that, plus the planned link to Northport.

      • PsyclingLeft.Always 2.1.1

        As someone totally into Sustainable Transport…this is really so aggravating. Just gotta wonder wtf ? 2020 Ongoing……..

        What I find most frustrating is that we’re now into the 15th year of rail upgrade works where nearly every Christmas/New Year as well as most public holidays and many other weekends the network is shut down for major works and yet we’re still in this position. What have Kiwirail been doing all this time? It feels like Kiwirail have been maintaining the network like a lowly used freight network.


        Krumdieck said a national energy strategy was needed.

        Proven technologies could be used to meet New Zealand's zero carbon goal by 2050 – and address transport needs at the same time, she said.

        KiwiRail could be a key part of the development, which would provide thousands of jobs.

        "The South Island becomes a net zero (carbon) island, one of the first ones in the world," Krumdieck said.


        The answer is there….but still pouring vast amounts of money into unsustainable transport roading

  3. joe90 3

    [image resized – Incognito]

  4. SPC 4

    There is some funny satire in Stuff, Damien Grant says it was time not to sound off about what the lone libertarian sees was wrong with the world … then does a swordfish profile of any and all politicians.


  5. Incognito 5

    A good article by Jack Santa Barbara although it doesn’t seem to offer any new insights and/or ideas although I’m hardly an expert.


    • pat 5.1

      "But degrowth is totally different from a recession or a government austerity program. It involves a carefully planned and managed reduction of less necessary and undesirable economic activities, and increase in activities supporting wellbeing and living within planetary boundaries. Degrowth is about reducing energy and raw material use to sustainable levels, and improving the quality of life for all."

      But does it offer 'it' for 8 billion?….that is the argument unaddressed.

      • Incognito 5.1.1

        Of course, there are many unaddressed arguments and unanswered questions because of the sheer nature and complexity of the issue and the stage it is at. However, I’d say yes, this is the implicit premise and requirement for any adequate and appropriate policy and implementation plan at all levels & scales involved aka multi-lateral international approach. Given that many nations are at quite different levels of (socio-economic) development and political freedom and engagement, and given that there will be many internal (political) barriers, it might seem that even thinking about addressing these issues is pie-in-the-sky stuff that makes for excellent thought experiments in Philosophy departments.

        Do you have any foundational problems with what is posited in the article and the current thinking about these issues, e.g., are they non-issues in your opinion? Are you simply pointing out the holes & gaps? Do you have any ideas for possible approaches or solutions to offer?

        My wish for the NY is fewer Gosman-like comments (aka interminable questioning and sealioning) and more constructive debate. Many a contrarian tries to bog down debate in pedantic nitpicking and almost absurd what-if scenarios, none of which is remotely helpful unless the aim is to score a few laughs among the likeminded.

        • RedLogix

          My wish for the NY is fewer Gosman-like comments (aka interminable questioning and sealioning) and more constructive debate.

          You might like this then:

          (I would prefer it just as a transcript because I find the video adds little value in this case.)

          • Incognito

            Thanks. The transcript was ok after removing the 347 paragraph marks and adding some necessary punctuation. It reminded me strongly of The Complementary Nature by Engstrøm and Kelso with a few Jungian themes.

            While I ‘liked’ it, I fail to see how this grants my NY’s ‘wish’.

            • RedLogix

              Good – and that is the kind of direction I would like the discussion to take as well. That would be my NY wish.

              But sadly social media seems to mitigate against this wish terribly. The physical remove and anonymous nature of the connection eliminates the social feedback; we cannot see in real time the look on a persons face or body language that would normally be clues to moderate behaviour. There is little consequence to attention-seeking, narcissistic and self-aggrandising aggressive behaviour; with a ready resort to sneering derision, contempt and even disgust.

              Even with the best moderation, the game seems chronically tilted in this direction.

              • Incognito

                Social media have been around for a while now and so has TS. The limitations/restrictions (but also the possibilities) are nothing new. It is my observation, one that seems to be shared with others, that the nature of comments/interactions on SM have hardened and become harsher, less tolerant and more aggressive, and even more threatening and violent in some cases. There is a plethora of articles and opinion pieces on this unfortunate development, the apparent escalation of which may coincide with the Covid-19 pandemic. (NB the pandemic is still raging!)

                As I said earlier today, the TS commentariat has a critical (self-)moderating role to play in the discourse on this forum. This ranges from DNFTT to calling out and challenging others to put their best arguments forward in open/public debate in good faith that is based on mutual trust and respect.

                Your YT link touches on this behaviour in a very general and is by no means a blueprint – the process might be messy, dirty, and ugly even aka robust debate but the intended outcome is all worth it.

                Because the commentariat is a collective, not every commenter has to be on his/her best behaviour all the time, it is simply not possible, but also not required. As with all collectives and collective actions, such as the science system, self-correction is fundamental for good functioning and achieving desired and positive outcomes in the short and medium term and longer-term impacts for the greater good.

                However, each collective and commentariat has a tipping point where discourse and action flip from net benefit to net polarising, divisive, and exclusionary aka rabbit hole and/or echo chamber. I believe that we have moved closer to this tipping point hence my NY’s wish.

        • pat

          I have a multitude of issues with the premise…not least of which is energy.

          Michaux has determined that we are a world that consumes approx 19 terawatts of power to provide for our population and that we can at best hope for a 10 terawatt world in the near term though more likely a 5 terawatt world…and he is one of the few who has taken the time to calculate it….that suggests a sustainable population around 25% of current which is not too far removed from the pre industrial plateau of around 1 billion if you allow a premium for some energy use that wasnt available prior….the question , as always . is how we get there from here ….and all indications are we will do it the way humans have always done…messily, if we manage it at all.

          • RedLogix

            Agreed. I have taken the time to read Michaux in more detail this past few days and I agree with his core numbers; it was absolutely worth the time to pick through his report. (I cannot claim to have lingered carefully over every page however.)

            We consistently underestimate the magnitude of the task to transition off fossil fuels. And those who argue we can just economise our way out of the problem are not properly appreciating what we are up against either. Nor how deeply interconnected all the parts of the industrial eco-system are. Advanced mRNA vaccines for instance, are a pinnacle product of an immensely complex supply and technology chain (the story of all the elements necessary for their design, production and distribution alone would fill many volumes of notes.) Taking an arbitrary axe to any single part of the system would have unintended consequences galore.

            As a first approximation, if you want us to consume per capita energy at 1950's levels, then 1950's technology is the base assumption that accompanies this. And all the social conditions that went with this. (Woke ideologies being a luxury belief only wealthy people can afford to indulge in.)

            • Incognito

              Taking an arbitrary axe to any single part of the system would have unintended consequences galore.

              Indeed, but who’s even proposing this?? It’s certainly not in the article that I linked to, quite the opposite in fact.

          • RedLogix

            Yet the demand goes quite the other way. In order to bring the other 7b people into modernity alone – at current consumption levels would require maybe 5x more energy – 95 terawatts. Even if we halved the current per capita energy intensity to get people fully into modernity, that still comes to a staggering 50 terawatts.

            No matter how you cut it, SWB renewables alone do not even touch the sides of this immense number in the long run. Even with a heroic rollout of Gen 4 nuclear 50tW would be an immense challenge – but not as impossible. The only known long term technology that is capable of delivering is nuclear fusion, but we cannot yet predict when it will be available at the required scale.

            Which is why I argue for a mix of SWB (in locations where it makes economic sense), and nuclear fission as a phased progression. The existing SWB rollout bridges over the next decade to Gen 4 fission, which in turn bridges over the next century or so to fusion. (We have seen a similar progression within fossil fuels themselves, from coal, to oil and then gas.)

            I would not claim this to be easy, but at least it is feasible.

            • pat

              As said to roblogic last week we may eventually develop fusion but that will require a (high level) functioning society….which is by no means guaranteed.

          • Incognito

            The foundational premise of the article is this:

            Continuing to prioritise economic growth is not a recipe for being a good ancestor. Nor is it a recipe for human progress …

            You reject this?

            If Michaux has done those calculations, as you say, then what does he propose we do and how? What alternative suggestions are out there that are more palatable (aka realistic) to you and presumably to the majority of people who are all in the same boat whether they know it, like it, or want it?

            ….the question , as always . is how we get there from here ….and all indications are we will do it the way humans have always done…messily, if we manage it at all.

            If one rejects the foundational premise, then the question is moot.

            • pat

              If you read what i wrote you note I never rejected the premise that unlimited economic growth is neither sustainable nor desired, I did pose the question of how it is proposed we move from the unsustainable to the sustainable (in two seperate instances)….far from being moot it is fundamentally important.

              • Incognito


                However, you wrote that you “have a multitude of issues with the premise”.

                I find your comments invariably ambiguous hence the simple question to you, to remove ambiguity and gain clarity – talking past each other is such a waste of good time.

                It seems we and many others are asking the same or similar questions based on the same or similar premises. However, ideas for moving forward seem to be scant supply. Since you seem to be willing to accept his premises, what does Michaux suggest if anything?

                • pat

                  "It seems we and many others are asking the same or similar questions based on the same or similar premises. However, ideas for moving forward seem to be scant supply. Since you seem to be willing to accept his premises, what does Michaux suggest if anything?'

                  Unfortunately that is not the case….(too) many are not asking that question and the point of drawing attention to Michaux's work is to demonstrate that much of what is proposed as solution is not.

                  His observation is we will have less, whether by choice or imposition ….how we deal with that fact is for us to decide, but the first step is acceptance.

                  • Incognito

                    That sounds like ‘intellectual cowardice’ to me. In other words, he [Michaux] apparently forecasts and points to doom ‘here it is folks, suck it up’ and then washes his hands off it. For example, when Shaun Hendy and his colleagues modelled the data at the time, they found an upper predicted probability of 80,000 deaths in NZ due to Covid-19. However, they ran mitigating scenarios and made plenty of suggestions to implement as public health measures. In other words, they were highly instrumental in finding solutions and didn’t stay at the sidelines letting others do the heavy lifting. That seems to be missing with Michaux – there are too many ‘influencers’ and YouTubers pretending to be public intellectuals already and they’re often poorly understood and/or misrepresented here on TS in (selective) quotes and clip-dumps.

                    I know the above sounds unduly harsh, so I looked up his website and to give him credit, he seems aware of this/his limitation.

                    I am developing a plan to transform our relationship between energy, minerals, and industrialization, as the existing proposed strategic plans are shown to be logistically impractical.

                    A contribution to the start of the discussion. [my italics]

                    https://www.simonmichaux.com/ [first time this link appears on TS; so much for drawing attention to his work]

                    Further down it reads:

                    I am doing work in the following sectors, to understand where we are now and what will be required in the future [my italics]

                    This sounds more promising than my initial superficial impression of Michaux based on your comments so far. I’ll leave it to others who have read more of his stuff to add more to this or not.

                    • pat

                      You are projecting your own emotive response upon Michaux's work.

                      In seeking solutions he discovered a dearth of information, gathered that information, analysed it and drew conclusions.

                      He has indicated the likely path of solution but the detail will likely be bespoke…what may work for one economy/location may nor be applicable/possible/desireable in another.

                      and all of the (potential) solutions will likely be uncomfortable in a political sense…..there is no neat easy solution on offer tied up in a bow.

                    • Incognito []

                      Michaux sounds like quite an intellectual tour de force.

                      He has indicated the likely path of solution but the detail will likely be bespoke…

                      Excellent! So, why don’t you give us an illustration?

                      and all of the (potential) solutions will likely be uncomfortable in a political sense…..

                      Great! Again, what might these look like?

                      Nobody is asking for or even expecting a “neat easy solution on offer tied up in a bow” although I do like the wrapping of Christmas presents. With you, we only seem to get coal in our stockings.

                    • pat

                      You appear to suffer from never being told you catch more flies with honey than vinegar…..Ive provided numerous links…away you go, or not, it matters not to me.

                    • Incognito []

                      You have??

                      Of course, I couldn’t remember those “numerous links” that you had allegedly provided, so I checked and could only find 2 in 2 separate comments of yours.

                      It appears that you are more of a spray-and-walk-away commenter than one who tries to make a genuine contribution by providing clear commentary and explanation to the TS readership.

                      In fact, you said as much here (https://thestandard.org.nz/open-mike-26-05-2022/#comment-1890435):

                      Im happy to continue providing links as I come across them but am unlikely to author a post for a couple of reasons…the theme is contrary to the accepted narrative here and my writing abilities would not do it service.

                      Do you want to have pat on the back for each link you’ve posted, Pat? Or do you need more ‘honey’ to sweeten you up? A chocolate fish ok?

                      Edit: I found one more link to a 1,000-page PDF and 2 YT clips (1:12:37 and 1:19:19 long, respectively).

                      PS: one of the same YT clips appeared in another comment of yours.

                    • pat

                      your hubris is great…and you are too lazy to research the information provided (and you appear unable to count)…rather you appear to think if you insult posters enough they will do the work for you.

                      You can lead an Ass to water but you cannot make it drink

                    • Incognito []

                      How many more times will you be playing this game of pulling teeth and when will you start to provide some answers without or instead of referring to the alleged state of mind of the one who’s asking simple questions. And when will you stop telling others what they ‘appear’ to be thinking – you are not a mind reader?

                      The onus is on the poster to help others along with answers to honest questions, at least initially. For example, dumping a link to a 1,000-page (!!) report on a highly specialised and technical topic is not helpful at all, it is disingenuous. In any case, you’re not commenting to and for me per se, you’re commenting to and for a much wider readership.

                      The derogatory labels and insults are starting to fly hard & fast now. Are you sure that you’re not projecting yourself? Instead of playing the man why don’t you start playing the ball?

                      You must be parched.

                      PS: I didn’t count “numerous links”, I counted a few rather unhelpful ones. Thus, I don’t think it is my counting that is the problemo.

                    • RedLogix


                      Ask yourself this question. If hypothetically one of the fusion research groups – say this one for example – was to deliver cheap, clean and abundant energy tomorrow. And it could be delivered anywhere globally and would give us a real shot at avoiding the worst of the climate crisis.

                      Do you think this development would actually be welcomed by the anti-capitalist, de-growth, power-down crowd?

                    • Incognito []

                      That’s a shedload of hypotheticals!

                      Assuming that “the anti-capitalist, de-growth, power-down crowd” is not hypothetical, who is there spokesperson, what is their website, and how much of a cohesive homogeneous crowd is this?

                    • RedLogix

                      Getting a straight answer from you is like pulling teeth and you know it. devil

                • pat

                  It is evident you have more interest in posturing than seeking information that may lead to solutions despite claims to the contrary.

                  You can continue stroking your ego with someone else.

                  • Incognito

                    Seeking information from you is like pulling teeth and you know it.

                    Should I pay you for yet another on-line consult or do you offer this more freely than info when somebody asks for it?

                    In case your head is swelling, I’m not singling you out and prompt many commenters for links, clarification, and additional explanatory commentary, in Mod notes if necessary. Most are more than happy to oblige without any further prompting or prodding, unlike you, and this lifts the quality of informed robust debate here. You don’t seem to have much interest in playing part in this, and I have seen others running into the same issue with you. Here’s the thing though, I don’t think you’re incapable, I think you’re unwilling, which raises the question what your intentions are when you comment as you do – it seems counterintuitive and contradictory.

    • RedLogix 5.2

      A lot of the article I strongly agree with, especially in his opening arguments describing the current situation. I am less on board with his de-growth solution; at first blush it seems to have a lot in common with WEF's Great Reset agenda. But that aside there are two aspects missing from his analysis.

      One is that the we are reaching an unprecedented demographic inversion – that because population growth has peaked and will fall over the foreseeable future, this also necessarily spells the end of economic growth as well. And it is not just a case of fewer people – the very nature of the demand from older, more mature people is different. It is possible on these grounds alone that the nature of our resource demand will shift.

      Countering this is the excellent Global Wealth Pyramid graphic showing just how uneven current resource consumption is. It is well and good to say the top 700m of humans are consuming wastefully – but even if by the most meticulous central planning and de-growth you halved their consumption, it is but a drop in the bucket compared to the massive un-met needs of the bottom half of humanity. It would be the pinnacle of narcissistic entitlement to demand they live in poverty forever.

      The other unspoken element is any global political mechanism to ensure this vision is managed equitably across the entire planet. Such a grand vision is well beyond our current political reach.

      • Incognito 5.2.1

        Demographics are not the same across the globe. In addition, and related to this, nations (populations) that want/need to catch up will continue and likely even increase the pressure on global resources for the sake of economic growth and claim this as their sovereign right as well as moral imperative. Mind you, if increased frequency of extreme weather events is going to be the norm many areas on the planet will see continued and likely increased poverty.

        Such a grand vision is well beyond our current political reach.

        So, what do we do in the meantime? Any vision takes imagination and boldness, so where will this be coming from? From our (political) leaders? From visionaries such as Musk or a handful of scholars and thinkers? From grassroots (activists)? And what do all the other ‘ordinary’ people do: watch & wait and BAU, ridicule, resist, or run for the hills?

        • RedLogix

          Demographics are not the same across the globe.

          Fair point – I was generalising. But in broad terms almost all developed nations are now below replacement level – except the African continent. By the end of this century we are facing a population bust. Japan was the first modern nation to get there, but they had the advantage of becoming rich before they became old. Quite a few places might wind up in both conditions, low development and negative growth due to an ageing shrinking population.

          Your last para gets a heartfelt agreement from me. It is why I linked to Daniel Schmachtenberger above – the idea of global emergence driven by synchronicity, connection and attraction that will evolve us toward a global society, united in purpose and values across the diversity of humanity. That is my vision, yet when I type it out in big broad strokes like this, shorn of a practical path to get there, no-one buys it. It all seems so removed from the shit and drama we face in the here and now.

          Yet we have been here before. In say 1700 chattel slavery was an almost universal condition. No-one thought it was a desirable thing to fall into, but few might imagine a world without it. Yet just a century later the combination of a coal driven Industrial Revolution, and an abolitionist movement founded in the idea that all humans were equal before God, had permanently shifted our thinking.

          The combination of an enabling technology, and a moral sentiment tilted toward the unity of the human race – changed everything in an emergent fashion. So why now in 2022 at the pinnacle of our collective insight and capability would we not be able to do this again?

          • Incognito

            Yes, I know that you have been indefatigably trying to build a bridge between the rather abstract problems and concrete tangible actions and integration into the daily lives of ‘ordinary’ people and I admire you for those efforts even though a sense of frustration seems to be detectable at times.

            Indeed, we (i.e. the human race) have been there before, a few times, but perhaps never with the same acute sense of urgency. Unfortunately, it appears to be human reaction to close off during tough/threatening times, which seems to lead to more feelings of isolation and disenfranchisement, which in turn can lead to further disengagement.

            We cannot rely on religion to give us moral guidance and instruction, if we ever could. The social contract is not what it used be either. The fact that we have very high homology between DNA, RNA, and protein sequences that indicates shared ancestry and strongly conserved evolutionary traits and high similarity with other species does also not seem to be enough either to realise our interconnectedness with fellow humans in particular and other species with whom we share this planet.

            It seems as if the more we know and the more inevitable the conclusion the more resistant we become and the more in denial we act. It seems counterintuitive but I have to conclude it is all but so. No single person can solve these wicked problems, only through trans-disciplinary collective thinking, discussion, and action do we stand a chance to chip a viable path to the future.

            • RedLogix

              Very nice wrap Incog. Your last sentence is absolutely on the nail, yet acting in this collective mode requires a transformation of the human heart.

              Too many people wanting to control the world, before they have even learned to master themselves.

              And for something completely different:

            • roblogic

              Whilst the fundamentalist strains of religion have a negative influence, I don't think it's right to follow the polemic stance of Dawkins and other strident atheists who hold just as tightly to their own narrow fundamentalisms.

              There is wisdom and insight in religion, if we see the symbols and meanings rather than the strident legalisms of the moralists and fearmongers. Quoting Richard D. Bartlett:

              Take for example the story of the Fall in Genesis, when Adam & Eve are cast out from the Garden of Eden because they ate the forbidden fruit. Idealist philosopher Bernardo Kastrup blew my mind when he suggested you can read this as an allegory of the moment in history when humans developed symbolic thought, 100,000 years after we’d been anatomically modern humans. It’s a story about how we were ripped out of the web of animal instinct when we developed sufficient self-consciousness to be morally culpable for our choices. Suddenly, we gained the “knowledge of good and evil”.

              The only way our society has a future is in turning away from our shadow selves and leaning into Love

              But on Christmas morning while I was out walking under the soft rain, a narrow beam of sunshine slipped through a gap in the clouds, kissed my forehead and stopped me in my tracks. I shit you not, it happened just like this. I stood there crying in the street with the sun and the rain and the tears on my cheeks. In my head I was retelling my life story for the 6 millionth time, but somehow I popped out of myself and teleported into my Dad’s role. I was seeing the story play out through his eyes. I watched as his hand reached out towards me. I felt the pure love in his heart, and I knew the truth of it. No threat, no neglect, no judgement, only love. I cried because I realised he’s been standing there this whole time, since before I was even born, reaching towards me always only with love.

      • Drowsy M. Kram 5.2.2

        It is well and good to say the top 700m of humans are consuming wastefully…

        "Well and good", and accurate (Sale Alert) – some 'hyperconsume' their way to the grave, resisting moderation with every fibre of their being. The clearly irrational trait of consuming to excess is an abiding mystery. Just because bacteria in a Petri dish do it, doesn't mean sentient humans on spaceship Earth must follow suit – and yet…

        It would be the pinnacle of narcissistic entitlement to demand they live in poverty forever.

        Can you give examples of these revolting narcissistic entitled people who demand that the 'bottom' half of humanity live in poverty 'forever' – Trump perhaps?

        Consider just two adaptive behaviors that Homo sapiens shares with all other species. Humans have an innate propensity to consume available resources – often to depletion – and a parallel drive to invade and colonize all accessible habitats.

        Maybe removing clean energy limitations on civilisation will allow BAU growth of consumers and/or consumption ad infinitum – I sincerely hope there’s time to tell.

  6. Joe90 6

    Fucker murdered 30 or more youngters. He'll do it again.

    • weston 6.1

      Cold blooded as a rattlesnake an cunning as a shithouse rat not a dude you'd want in your neighborhood .

  7. joe90 7

    Morale is high.


    A video emerged that appears to be showing "L/DPR" commander beating soldiers who evacuated two wounded as a group of 10 people, instead of taking a position as they were meant to. (shared by @DefMon3)


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