Open mike 26/03/2014

Written By: - Date published: 6:55 am, March 26th, 2014 - 120 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

openmike 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 …

120 comments on “Open mike 26/03/2014”

  1. mickysavage 1

    And in this morning’s news John Key has single handedly shown what an utterly brilliant negotiator he is by persuading European leaders to have a think about a free trade agreement. Want to have a bet they have been thinking of this for a while? And the “insurmountable difficulties” surrounding agriculture will mean that any free trade agreement, which will be years in the future, will have little if any benefit.

    And to show that the Government is in trouble they have wheeled out Paula Bennett who in her latest piece of bash them legislation is proposing that further heinous offences are added to the list of offences which would limit people from working with children. They should have asked her about why numbers of emergency grants for beneficiaries facing having their power cut off have been declining at the same time that cut offs have been soaring.

    Just another day …

    • geoff 1.1

      Yep heard both of those stories on RNZ and thought exactly the same.

      Johnny is clearing trying to show us all what a super trader he is and how he bargain for ‘great deals’ for NZ. Aren’t we lucky…

      Edit: things didn’t go perfectly for little johnny though:
      http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/9869154/NZ-left-off-map-at-nuke-summit

      • bad12 1.1.1

        Yup they sure know how to treat our Prime Minister with all deserved respect over in Europe, in the middle of Slippery’s briefing to the press a Dutch official barged into the room and gave them all the kick,

        ”See ya later Slippery” seems to have been the message to our PM obviously a waste of space in their opinion when they had ‘more important’ people wanting to use the room…

      • miravox 1.1.2

        “Johnny is clearing trying to show us all what a super trader he is and how he bargain for ‘great deals’ for NZ. Aren’t we lucky…”

        So, how many deals has he actually done? Apart from the selling of Aotearoa film workers, electricity and gambling, that is.

    • karol 1.3

      Or people could look at the possibility of a more open door for Kiwis to an independent Scotland.

    • Olwyn 1.4

      I heard those stories too, and the scary thing about them is that not so long ago you could have mistaken them for satire.

    • Draco T Bastard 1.5

      One of Ha-Joon Chang’s recommendations for rebuilding the economy is to either get rid of the FTAs (my preferred option) or reform them so that they’re far more flexible. He points out that free-trade has resulted in the exact opposite of what the free-marketers, in their belief, said they would. That the most growth in all nations has been when the government with, adequate social welfare, drove the economy. In this state there was more innovation, more industrialisation and greater stability.

    • Tracey 1.6

      And all this when he is supposed to be at a nuclear disarmament discussion.

      I have no problem with this having been ongoing BUT to be fair, Grosser and the diplomats and the MFAT officials will have been at this for some time I am sure, in one fell swoop he claims it all for himself. Not a team player our Mr Key…

      Keep seeing a billboard for Paula Bennet out west BUT the picture is way different to any others of her I have seen. I went to her website and can’t find the picture they have used. I also note that onher website the latest news is from October 2013.

      • Draco T Bastard 1.6.1

        Not a team player our Mr Key…

        I’m sure that he sees himself as a Randian Super-hero and everyone else is just there to do as he tells them. Because of this he probably believes he did it all himself.

        • Tracey 1.6.1.1

          Probably all leaders do it.

          I cant recall us getting the roll call of “pull aside” meetings with Clark, but perhaps we did.

  2. karol 2

    Meanwhile, the Greens on Campus in Auckland are getting it together for a big day on Saturday’s (29th March) Day of Action. Their Facebook page – Crafta-Brunch:

    Come along to this incredible event – the crafta-brunch. Not sure what a crafta-brunch is? Well…. the crafta-brunch is an event which combines the magic of crafts with the tastiness of brunch. Pretty self-explanatory really!

    We will be meeting at 10am at the Auckland Greens Office to create signs and banners for the NO TPPA march later in the day. At 11.30am (approx.) we will be serving brunch – this will be conveniently easy to transport, so we can all walk down together to Aotea square, where the march will be starting at 1pm.

    Preferably wear Green clothes if you have them! Although we will hopefully be supplying some Green ‘capes’ for those without. $5.00 for entry (to cover brunch). Please note RSVPs will be relied on, by our chefs!

    More at the link

    • greywarbler 3.1

      To(o) mch txting.
      A lot of people don’t seem to know the difference between to and too.
      And between lose and loose.

      And the meanings of reticence, reluctance and resile – seem to crop up a lot these days.

      resile –
      I think current usage is along what Google says – abandon a position or a course of action.
      “can he resile from the agreement?”
      But surely the word there would be withdraw if abandoning something. To resile would indicate more than just abandon a position but to actually return to a former one.
      free dictionary says –
      (intr) to spring or shrink back; recoil or resume original shape
      and
      1. To spring back, especially to resume a former position or structure after being stretched or compressed.
      2. To draw back; recoil.

      reticent
      Google says
      not revealing one’s thoughts or feelings readily.
      free dictionary –
      not open or communicative; not saying all that one knows; taciturn; reserved
      1. Inclined to keep one’s thoughts, feelings, and personal affairs to oneself. See Synonyms at silent.
      2. Restrained or reserved in style.
      3. Reluctant; unwilling.(American Heritage Dictionary)
      But reticence is being used more to indicate reluctance to do something as in the No.3 American form which extends its original meaning unnecessarily where reluctance fits.

      Reluctant
      Google says
      unwilling and hesitant; disinclined.
      free dictionary –
      1. not eager; unwilling; disinclined
      2. offering resistance or opposition
      and
      1. Unwilling; disinclined: reluctant to help.
      2. Exhibiting or marked by unwillingness: a reluctant smile.
      3. Offering resistance; opposing.

      • Hayden 3.1.1

        Many people don’t even know how to use “disingenuine” correctly:

        Incoherent education policy

        • greywarbler 3.1.1.1

          That’s a good link Hayden. The charter schools initiative (now that’s a word I have trouble typing) is one to keep our eyes on. With a genuine critical faculty.

          @Th Allen
          That little red line. Do you find it really helpful. I curse it often. It seems to want me to put z wherever I have s and other bissare Americanisms.

          • The Al1en 3.1.1.1.1

            Yes, the little red line is my friend. I have UK English as the input language on my pc and not u.s English, so no color issues to labor over 🙂

      • The Al1en 3.1.2

        I don’t know what the reasons are for such poor use of the language, but good to see someone over there in Leeds has started to address it.
        I’m shockingly poor with grammar and punctuation and syntax, however, my spelling, thanks to the little red line that appears under mistakes and google isn’t too bad.

        Evolving language is one thing, but destroying the old can’t be a good thing, going by what’s passing for the replacement.

      • Draco T Bastard 3.1.3

        They don’t know the meaning of the word capitalist either:

        1. a person who has capital, especially extensive capital, invested in business enterprises.

        2. an advocate of capitalism.

        3. a very wealthy person.

        Most people seem to assume that it includes entrepreneur as well. In fact, I had an economics professor who told the class that it did.

    • Ron 3.2

      We could do with a similar project in new Zealand. The standard of English here is pretty abysmal.
      Pronunciation and Grammar leave much to be desired

      • The Al1en 3.2.1

        Using the standard set by our pm as an example, I’d be inclined to agree.

      • McFlock 3.2.2

        Already do, for some university courses.

        One problem NZers face is our monovowel – I’ve encountered more than a few individuals who type “could of” instead of “could have”.

        • geoff 3.2.2.1

          my fave is guttered instead of gutted,

          I wuz totaly guttered!

          • Ant 3.2.2.1.1

            Just like ‘armed defenders squad’, ‘guttered’ is always a pretty good way to troll message boards and blogs. 😀

  3. bad12 4

    ‘All Means All’ would seem to be criminal as a name in itself, published in Stuff on 24/03/2014, it appears All Means All has a bit of a problem with Slippery the Prime Minister,(don’t we all),pun unintended,

    Convicted after a trial in the Christchurch District Court of 6 charges of threatening to kill the PM, All Means All has also said He will go on hunger strike if He is jailed for the offences…

    • Mainlander 4.1

      Anybody that threatens to kill anyone multiple times regardless of how “slippery” they are deserves jail, there is no place for that sick sort of behavior in our society

  4. bad12 5

    Noticed on TV News reports last night was an item on a number of severe cases of the H1N1 flu which had hospitalized a number of people and one person was reported to have died from complications surrounding this flu virus,

    H1N1 was the ‘flu’ at the center of the ‘pandemic killer flu’ scare,fear,scare a few years back where the Government bought in millions of doses of ‘Tamiflu’ to combat what was touted to be a virulent killer like no other recent flu which never actually eventuated,

    Recently these stocks of ‘Tamiflu’ having reached their use by date had to be destroyed costing the government 10’s of millions of dollars,

    The ’cause’ of the recent unseasonal outbreak of H1N1 in different parts of this country is being pointed at as ‘across the ditch’ as Australia has also reported a spike in cases of unseasonal H1N1,

    i am tho ‘suspicious’ of this claim, having had a blood test returned a year ago with what the Doctor at the time described ‘an unusual flu virus’ from which He later back-peddled at 90K an hour when i asked Him to identify the particular flu,

    My suspicion goes further to suggest that this particular flu is ‘piggy backed’ on the back of the Chicken Pox virus, which becomes important to anyone who was inflicted with this flu in prior years as this suspicion would mean that they are likely to be carriers of H1N1 via its piggy backing on the Chicken Pox virus,

    What then is likely to occur is that ‘the carrier’ is likely to be struck down with an unseasonal bout of H1N1 which will later morph into something more serious, a case of severely painful Shingles being one serious complication that readily springs to mind…

    • Rosie 5.1

      Yes, saw that on Te News last night re the possible swine flu re run. Had it in 2009 and really thought I was a goner. I was severely ill for six weeks. The Dr later informed me that he suspected the virus did some damage to my nervous system, (when I went to him a few months later with a nervous system meltdown/breakdown) although he couldn’t elaborate on this theory……….

      Would a socially engaged public health service actively promote better individual hygiene practices during cold and flu season or do we leave it up to drug companies to promote their over the counter remedies that merely alleviate symptoms while folks continue to go about sneezing all over their workmates, wiping their hand on their runny noses and then place their hands on the bus bell and hand holds of public transport, ready for someone else to come along to grasp that virus laden surface? (these yucky things one does witness).

      Would a government who wanted to promote good health in the population introduce say a 10 day minimum sick leave provision in it’s Employment Act (eg, our E.R.A) instead of the current miserable 5 days, which would give workers a chance to go home at the first sign of infectious illness and stay there until the virus is no longer contagious, therefore not jeopardising the health or their workmates and the productivity of the workplace because everyone got sick?

      Just thinking of a viral illness alone wouldn’t we be better off and healthier if we had a government that was committed to the well being of it’s people?

      • karol 5.1.1

        Agreed on promoting healthier habits. With swine flu on the agenda, I’l be reluctant to use public transport over the winter. Most people are fine, but there’s always one or two snuffling and coughing next to me on the trains and buses.

        And I’ve experienced very ill people at work because they’ve already used up their sick leave entitlement.

        • Rosie 5.1.1.1

          “And I’ve experienced very ill people at work because they’ve already used up their sick leave entitlement.”

          Yes, I’ve seen it too karol, and workers using up annual leave to cover illness.
          In lieu of better sick leave provisions in law, progressively minded workplaces should be open to negotiation to providing extra paid sick days to a very ill worker, that is, if they aren’t covered by a collective agreement that may already contain more than the standard and minimum 5 days.

          • bad12 5.1.1.1.1

            i have a novel theory about ‘the flu’ which i am not suggesting anyone else adopt,but,except for the year of H1N1 and a rematch with what i believe to be the same virus in late December just past, i cannot put a year on when i suffered the flu in a previous year,

            If you transport flu virus into a warm home it is an open invitation for that virus to replicate itself the ideal temperature for such replication being somewhere around 20 degrees,

            i do not use home heating whatsoever, except that given off by the stove while cooking, preferring instead the ‘layered clothing’ method of maintaining core body temperature,

            During Winter i still spend my hour in the garden most days if it is not raining,(or snowing as it did here a couple of days a couple of years ago), and while i ‘catch’ a definite cold/flu in my nose a couple of times during winter they never seem to get past occupation of my nose and are usually gone by the next day having failed to replicate,

            The difference???, i am breathing in cold air to an already warm core body temperature, coming into a heated house tho from outside in Winter temperatures would mean breathing in warmed air to a cooled body core temperature, ideal conditions if the flu virus is also present for reproduction,

    • Ron 6.1

      Colin James I note that he calls himself a journalist and Political Analyst.
      I wonder what qualifications one needs to be a Political Analyst. Whatever they are he doesn’t seem to have them. Maybe it was a type and he means Political Anallyst

      • Tracey 6.1.1

        Slater is claiming to be a journalist, so that might help answer your question.

      • lprent 6.1.2

        Colin James I note that he calls himself a journalist and Political Analyst.

        He is both. And he is also one of the very few public political analysts around who I actually respect. I have some particularly high standards 🙂

        I’ve been reading him since the early 80’s and he is generally one of the few political journalists who both thinks about what he is writing. I’ve also seen him look backwards to see when he screwed up in the past and why – a rarity amongst political analysts in any era.

        These days what you see is pretty much his own thoughts rather than the “spin from the last spinner” approach that seems far more common in what passes for political analysis in the media.

        • geoff 6.1.2.1

          What I found interesting about that piece was that Colin James recognised there is no one else suitable to lead Labour yet he was adamant that if Labour loses the election that Cunliffe would be replaced.

        • Ergo Robertina 6.1.2.2

          I guess one of his screw-ups was portraying Don Brash to the public in 2005 as an old-school principled conservative.

    • Draco T Bastard 6.2

      “Vision” talk doesn’t usually cut much mustard.

      Vision is important but you also need to be able to say how you’re going to get us there.

      He understands that Labour must be near-centrist to win.

      This is the fallacy that every party keeps buying into. john Key was right when he said that NZ was more socialist than the US and because of that Labour actually has to go further left to win. They won’t get those lefty non-voters back if they keep being Nat-lite. Here’s the thing: After the GFC it’s actually really easy to go left. The financial collapse and the increasing poverty that we’ve seen over the last three decades is ample proof that we’re following the wrong path.

      Key does connect with ordinary folk because for all his dosh he has an easy camaraderie that frustrates the elite but is real newzild.

      It could just be me but I’ve never seen any such camaraderie out of Key. He’s always come across to me as slimy, untrustworthy scum who wouldn’t be seen dead at most peoples BBQs if he could help it.

  5. fender 7

    Listening to Jamie Whyte on RNZ was like listening to a far-right version of Shearer when he was a mumbling “leader”.

    Not much info there except the removal of the RMA, “liberalising” education, and how he obviously idolises Roger Douglas. What a dickhead…

  6. greywarbler 8

    Reading about the flu cases, just reminds me that I have heard of some cases of pneumonia lately. Which seemed strange – I wouldn’t have thought it likely for the people affected.

    • bad12 8.1

      greywarbler, i havn’t got the link sorry, but, on my travels through the flu ridden world on the internet i come across a small piece of info that said that the flu H3N2 had quite a high incidence of a later bout of Pneumonia as a complication,

      As far as H1N1 goes i would suggest that people indulge in foods with high immune system boosting qualities and be careful not to indulge in stuff that may seriously compromise that immune system,

      Prolonged use of some over the counter pain relief while not advertised so can lead to the immune system being compromised, i wont for obvious reasons name the products, but, Google is your friend when it comes to directly asking if the product ‘might’ have a negative effect on your immune system,

      My suspicions concerning H1N1,(and for me to broaden those suspicions would require us all to have plenty of tinfoil in the cupboards),as outlined in the comment above would i would suggest require a ‘carrier’ of the H1N1 virus to have seriously lowered the effectiveness of their immune system in some way for this flu to change from being ‘dormant’ to provoking symptoms of a full on flu,

      Of course an elongated bout of warm weather at the end of Summer might also contribute to the bodies immune system being in a more ‘rested’ state of activity…

      • Colonial Viper 8.1.1

        There are significant suspicions that fever lowering pain killers like panadol detract from the immune response in children, which would be expected since fever plays an integral part in the body’s defensive response to acute infection.

        • bad12 8.1.1.1

          Lolz CV, i see you are far less circumspect about putting a name to suspect products, i will add that such detraction from the immune response is not confined to children’s remedies alone,

          Pain relief that targets and ‘knocks out’ the bodies ‘pain transmitters’ are also suspect when their usage has passed that of a week or two,(the manufacturer does advise consulting your GP about long term use of the product but doesn’t mention questions surrounding the disablement of the immune system as a side effect)…

  7. Tracey 9

    New caption contest.

    https://twitter.com/johnkeypm/status/448183132554919936/photo/1

    “Don’t worry, I have the electorate by the short and curlies”

    • fender 9.1

      LOL

      “It’s John…. John Key, we’ve met before remember? Tony Abbott is PM of Australia. I’m from NZ.”

  8. wyndham 10

    Over on Daily Blog, Martyn Bradbury makes mention of Labour springing a surprise and bringing Charles Chauvel back from N. York to contest Ohariu against Dunne:

    ‘Peter Dunne beat Charles Chauvel by 1500 odd votes last time. With Katrina Shanks bowing out the race is wide open and with Gareth Hughes stepping away to stop the candidate wasted vote, Labour could surprise the electorate with a shock return of Chauvel from the UN to run again. Expect some surprises. If Labour can win this seat, they rob Key of another possible ally.’

    Anyone else heard about Charles returning ? Good news if he does, I reckon.

    • Tracey 10.1

      NOpe, Darren Hughes is one I would love to see back though.

      • Puckish Rogue 10.1.1

        Yes indeed, bring back Darren Hughes

        • fender 10.1.1.1

          Darren Hughes was an effective MP, but I’m sure you and Slater just want to share schoolboy laughs some more over a (probably) bi-curious guest having second thoughts.

          • comfy 10.1.1.1.1

            Remind me: why did he resign?

          • Puckish Rogue 10.1.1.1.2

            “having second thoughts”

            Well thats one way of looking at it I guess

            • McFlock 10.1.1.1.2.1

              especially as noone here knows what happened. Including you.

              • bad12

                Mac, how dare you suggest that ‘wing-nuts’ need ‘facts’ to make a judgement about anything, if it jerks their knee its gotta be true is their modus operendi…

    • greywarbler 10.2

      I did a piece on Ohariu the other day and noticed how well Charles had done. It would be worth Labour running him again, with him high on the list so he gets a sure place if he does return. He would be doing both Labour and NZ a big boost. I think also his background which I think was part Tahitian would give Labour another boost in the eyes of South Aucland people. I hope the rumour is true. Make it so!

      • PapaMike 10.2.1

        Perhaps Charles could be persuaded to come back after the election. He would make a good Labour leader – well the best around probably. There does not appear to be much competition.

      • Rosie 10.2.2

        ” I think also his background which I think was part Tahitian would give Labour another boost in the eyes of South Aucland people.”

        Hi Warbly! Just bear in mind the electorate of Ohariu is in Wellington, not South Auckland………

    • Colonial Viper 10.3

      Why would you give up a new international career for an even odds chance (at best) of returning to the lovely supportive work environment known as the Labour caucus?

      • Draco T Bastard 10.3.1

        Good question. I can’t see it happening.

      • greywarbler 10.3.2

        There is still hope for a better Labour. Chauvel would have to have a bit of mongrel as well as being astute. Jones has the mongrel and thinks he’s cute. It just sounds rather the same as the prescription but really a wide distance from what is needed.

        What is Chauvel’s nature and has he any fellow feelings with all his fellows, or is he a fellow whose mind is too far away from the grassroots to see the little people. I know he has a brown shade, but some of those brown politicians are as addicted as any pakeha on the rise who likes to bathe in champagne, or still on the ladder, in chardonnay or sauv blanc.

      • Tracey 10.3.3

        thanks cv, that made my day.

    • Stephanie Rodgers 10.4

      Martyn is incorrect. The candidate selection has already been held for Ohariu, and Virginia Andersen was selected.

      (Disclaimer: I’m on the Ohariu campaign team.)

      People who are interested in the Ohariu race can follow Ginny on Facebook or Twitter:
      https://www.facebook.com/virginia.andersen.ohariu

      • Rosie 10.4.1

        Oh Hi Stephanie. Sorry, I didn’t see you up there! Will you be at the meeting tonight, the one I mention at 10.5?

        • Stephanie Rodgers 10.4.1.1

          Unfortunately I’m not able to be there! Hope you get a great turnout 🙂

          • Rosie 10.4.1.1.1

            I hope so too Stephanie. Lol, just to let you know, I’m one of the people behind these placards that you may see from time to time around the northern burbs, if you’re living in this area:

            http://wellington.scoop.co.nz/?p=61648

            Our paths may cross at some stage during the campaign 🙂

            Hey, btw, I really think we can win, but it will take some work. All the best with your campaigning.

    • Rosie 10.5

      Thats interesting wyndham. If they do bring him back they had better inform the Labour candidate for Ohariu, Virginia Anderson.

      Oh, and folks, don’t forget tonight’s talk “How not to be Dunne over again this election” hosted by WEA at St John’s Conference centre, corner of Willis and Dixon, Wellington. Speaker John Maynard of People’s Power Ohariu. 5.30 – 6.30 pm

  9. greywarbler 11

    I have been following the MH370 plane disappearance case. And yesterday put the case for one scenario, about a fire and perhaps loss of consciousness. Then I remembered about a plane in Australia flying across the continent on auto pilot.
    This was well covered by The Peoples Daily http://english.peopledaily.com.cn/english/200009/05/eng20000905_49748.html

    Police believe the plane depressurized, leaving the pilot and passengers without oxygen….
    It apparently ran out of fuel after flying in a virtually straight line about 2,840 kilometers (1,760 miles) from Perth in western Australia. [To near Mt Isa in Queensland.]

    Dramatically and traumatically “The plane was shadowed for part of its journey by a plane belonging to the Royal Flying Doctor Service and another small commercial plane. Both tried unsuccessfully to make radio contact with the plane’s pilot.”

    And the item refers to another similar happening, “The tragedy had eerie similarities to a crash last October in which two-time U.S. Open golf champion Payne Stewart and five others died when Stewart’s Learjet drifted on autopilot for hours before running out of fuel and crashing in South Dakota.”

    On that crash there is another report – “Government officials said the plane may have suffered a rare pressurization failure. When that occurs at high altitudes such as above 30,000 feet, pilots have a short period of time to don an oxygen mask before slipping into unconsciousness….
    ABCNEWS aviation analyst John Nance.
    He said that at altitudes above 30,000 feet, a pilot would have to strap on an oxygen mask quickly or his mind would become so muddled from lack of oxygen — a condition called hypoxia — that he could no longer help himself.
    “The time of useful consciousness at 25,000 feet is a fairly sedate 20 to 25 minutes. But the time of useful consciousness at 39,000 feet is six to 12 seconds, ” said Nance.
    “The fact that this aircraft continued climbing right through their assigned altitude on up to almost 45,000 feet, without any call from the pilots, indicated to me that this crisis occurred some place before 39,000 but most probably above 30,000.”
    The Air Force reported the plane had been “porpoising,” its altitude fluctuating between 22,000 and 51,000 feet.”

    A poignant feature was that the doomed flight became television news, and the wife of the plane owner was watching and trying to rouse him by calling him on her cellphone, but to no avail.
    http://emperors-clothes.com/9-11backups/abclearjet.htm

    This hypoxia line has been followed by the Brisbane Times paper of 25v March citing a number of examples I have given. http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/world/malaysia-airlines-mystery-was-it-another-ghost-flight-20140325-hvmn3.html

    • Colonial Viper 11.1

      Yep I think that there is a fairly good chance the Captain and FO will turn out to be the heroes, not the bad actors, of this tragic piece.

    • ianmac 11.2

      I wondered about depressurisation as well. Though the erratic progress of the plane doesn’t quite fit. I understand that most planes switch to Auto pilot once in the air and the flight is programmed and followed by auto unless there is an event which causes the pilots to regain control. (I think there is now a system which takes the plane on auto from takeoff to completed landing. Wow!)
      I suppose that had there been a catostrophic failure the pilot could have taken back control of the plane, and turned West and all aboard suffered the same fate as those Australian ones.
      Just another conjecture I guess.

      • Colonial Viper 11.2.1

        You can be in a hypoxic state, still be conscious, and for a while continue to believe that you are making good decisions and judgements, keying in accurate information, having useful conversation and doing good mental arithmetic, while in fact being completely out of it mentally and outputting gibberish.

        • Draco T Bastard 11.2.1.1

          Obviously need a better auto pilot. One that can detect cabin depressurisation and act accordingly.

          Hang on, why are we still using pilots?

          • rhinocrates 11.2.1.1.1

            There’s a joke in aviation circles that in the future, planes will be crewed by a pilot and a dog. The pilot’s job will be to feed the dog and the dog’s job will be to bite the pilot if they try to fly the plane.

            That said, there would be tremendous resistance to purely AI or remote control of a plane by the current generation. Quite reasonably, they/we/I know that such things can have bugs or be hacked.

            Maybe the next generation, which will view planes as appliances more than piloted vehicles will be willing to buy tickets on drones… but yes, we need better autopilots and communication systems that remain in constant communication rather than black boxes that are only useful after the crash if they’re found at all. Surely modern communications and information processing can manage that.

            • Draco T Bastard 11.2.1.1.1.1

              That said, there would be tremendous resistance to purely AI or remote control of a plane by the current generation. Quite reasonably, they/we/I know that such things can have bugs or be hacked.

              Actually, it’s not reasonable at all. It is possible to make software with no bugs. Sure, it takes a long time and a lot of testing but it can be done and once it was done it would be used for years. Hacking is a little different but even that can be minimised.

              The reality is that the machine can, and will, fly the plane better than a human pilot. Same as the Google self-drive system presently drives a car better than any human can.

              • Lanthanide

                “Actually, it’s not reasonable at all. It is possible to make software with no bugs. Sure, it takes a long time and a lot of testing but it can be done and once it was done it would be used for years. Hacking is a little different but even that can be minimised.”

                Yes, it’s possible to make software without bugs, just very expensive. But in mission-critical applications such as aviation where human lives are at stake, I’m pretty sure they already use those expensive methods.

                The difficult part, though, is designing software that can take into account all possible scenarios, and have it react in a sane manner in each and every single scenario, 100% of the time without failure, ever. Computers can only do what they’ve been told to do, if the committee designing the computer never imagined situation XYZ could ever happen, the computer may have no way to react to that situation. But a sufficiently skilled human in might be able to rely on their experience and skills to produce a correct, or near-correct, response.

                The reason we have pilots is because they’re as close as we can currently get to being able to take into account all possible scenarios.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  The reason we have pilots is because they’re as close as we can currently get to being able to take into account all possible scenarios.

                  The only time I’ve heard of that that may have had any bearing was when a BA 747 flew threw a volcano plume that shut down all four engines and induced a spin. The pilot managed to correct the spin and restart the engines and this was put down to his test pilot training. Pretty sure that today’s autopilots can correct for both of those.

                  After 100 years of flight we pretty much know all that can happen to a plane in flight and design software to work with all those situations. In fact, it’s that capability that makes drones viable.

                  • Lanthanide

                    Which comes back to Rhino’s point, that even if the a computer can do it, the public perception is that the pilot may be able to solve problems a computer couldn’t.

                    But just because you’ve got one example of it, doesn’t mean there aren’t many dozens of others you’ve simply never heard of, precisely because a pilot was there and averted the disaster.

                    On the other hand, there are many disasters that have been caused by pilot’s who didn’t believe or properly comprehend their instruments.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      Which comes back to Rhino’s point, that even if the a computer can do it, the public perception is that the pilot may be able to solve problems a computer couldn’t.

                      Which isn’t a reasonable position.

                      But just because you’ve got one example of it, doesn’t mean there aren’t many dozens of others you’ve simply never heard of, precisely because a pilot was there and averted the disaster.

                      Actually, I think you’ll find that it’s the other way around. We would hear when the pilot saved an aircraft because it happens so rarely. All other times it would be pilot error.

                  • Stephanie Rodgers

                    Based on an excessive amount of watching Air Crash Investigation, I have to disagree, Draco.
                    (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Mayday_episodes)

                    There are crashes caused by operator error. There are also many caused by computer error either in the plane or on the ground which are saved by skilled pilots (and some which aren’t, because the pilots assume the computer knows what it’s doing). And more than a few where engine failure or lines being cut results in no power at all to the computer systems, where pilots have had to save the day by treating commuter aircraft like they’re gliders.

                    The incident you refer to (I assume http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_Airways_Flight_9) was a bit more complicated than just ‘correcting a spin and restarting the engines’. I don’t think anyone could say for certain that a computer-flown plane would have had any better outcome.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      Based on an excessive amount of watching Air Crash Investigation, I have to disagree,

                      Did you notice that most of those are really old? You really can’t look at an air accident from 1975 and use it to determine what computers are capable of today. Also, quite a lot of them seem to be due to human error on the ground most of which just wouldn’t happen today and nobody would be able to correct for.

                      The incident you refer to (I assume http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_Airways_Flight_9) was a bit more complicated than just ‘correcting a spin and restarting the engines’.

                      Yes, that’s the one. I was operating on pure memory and it was actually far simpler than I thought. Going into a spin is the most dangerous thing that can happen to an aircraft that doesn’t involve loss of flight control surfaces and that didn’t happen. My mistake.

                      I don’t think anyone could say for certain that a computer-flown plane would have had any better outcome.

                      I think modern computers could have done a better job.

                      Modern satellite, radar and communications have probably also told the aircraft of the volcano so it can avoid it. If it hasn’t avoided it then it’s going to know where they are and it’s glide path and so determine best place to crash land given the state of the aircraft and start heading towards it. Once it gets down to a predetermined level it tries to restart the engines exactly as the pilots did. If the engines restart then it recomputes and heads towards the nearest airport else it continues to crash landing.

                      Also note the rather large Icelandic volcano that closed airports across Europe a couple of years back. When that erupted a number of aircraft flew through worse conditions than what that 747 in 1982 faced and didn’t have any problems. Reason? Aircraft today are built better.

                    • Stephanie Rodgers

                      And a lot of them are very recent, Draco. Here’s a handy Wiki list of more recent ones: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:21st-century_aviation_accidents_and_incidents

                      The more recent a crash is, the more likely automation is the problem.

                      Here’s a very recent one where sure, poor maintenance started the issue – so yes, mistakes on the ground still happen! – but the computer – on a modern, ‘built better’ aircraft! simply could not handle receiving conflicting data:
                      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/XL_Airways_Germany_Flight_888T

                      Given those facts, I find your statement that I’m ‘looking at an air accident from 1975 and using it to determine what computers are capable of today’ very condescending – especially when you’re the person whose argument is based simply on ‘I reckon computers today could totally handle this.’

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      especially when you’re the person whose argument is based simply on ‘I reckon computers today could totally handle this.’

                      Actually, it’s based upon the fact that almost the entire landing procedure of the space shuttle is automated and that drones fly autonomously. And this:

                      Such systems enable aircrafts to land in weather conditions that would otherwise be dangerous or impossible to operate in.

                      And, yes, if the computer is getting incorrect information then it’s not going to fly correctly. The same would be true of pilots.

                • ianmac

                  Computer technology is moving steadily towards computers being able to carry out actions that have not been programed ie fuzzy logic. I guess when that happens computers will have self determination and people will become redundant.
                  For aircraft then fuzzy logic would allow the computer to make decisions as well as a pilot for dealing with unforseen problems. Maybe better as without emotional responses. Mmmm? Brave new world?

                  • greywarbler

                    ianmac
                    The computer is set to the decision to stay on course as keyed in to the system. So it is already running the show.

                    So what about programming in a command to ask for confirmation every half hour, no notification wait 15 minutes, then wait for 5, then start on safety procedures like bringing down height level, sending out messages to nearest base, send out messages to nearest wavelengths, keep moving down to breathable air, sending out constant messages of warning to any receiving aircraft around etc.

                    And ask for instructions – it would still be proceeding on course, but if there was a way that the plane’s system could be contacted and set into some suitable manoeuvres it would give a chance for all. The air might be breathable, the pilot and the passengers might be able to recover, it might be able to achieve landing somewhere suitable or ditch where retrievable.

                    The new plane designs are big enough to take a small village now, the companies owe a change in design to the travelling public. But we should also be having the opportunity if we have time to go by ship. I was just looking at some mementoes of my Britanis trip back in the 70’s. Good experience.

                    • greywarbler

                      I wouldn’t trust the software producers to have perfect systems. Becuase it can be done, it doesn’t mean that it will be done. And if a rare thing happens that it is not programmed for, what is it going to do. Drones being used now are more machines to do things than carry people.

                      I don’t want people excluded from our activities, I want human interaction with trained skilled people who have superior tools. Pike River now, that should have been machines, I don’t want people to be sacrificed for commercial gain.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      So what about programming in a command to ask for confirmation every half hour, no notification wait 15 minutes, then wait for 5,

                      Far faster to have cabin pressure, altitude, and attitude gauges.

                      And if a rare thing happens that it is not programmed for, what is it going to do.

                      As ianmac said, fuzzy logic. Essentially, the software will be able to analyse what state the aircraft is in and make the correct choices to correct. And, yes, the computer will also be able to take into account damage and how that’s affecting the aircraft.

              • Tracey

                does novopay know this?

                • Draco T Bastard

                  Novapay wasn’t written to that sort of standard because it’s dammed expensive. Of course, it should have been written to far higher standards than what it was as well but that’s the result of free-market capitalism and the delusional belief that the private sector can always do better.

      • McFlock 11.2.2

        conjecture, but it’s beginning to look that way.

        • greywarbler 11.2.2.1

          Yes well we’ve had pilot suicide, we have had terrorism, we have had sudden mental deterioraton, hijacking, stealing the plane and passengers with stealth flying under radar cover.

          An experienced woman expert talked about examining the maintenance manuals for the recent to sometime past for ideas on possible problems from inadequate fixing. She said these should have been immediately available but there was so much secrecy so we haven’t had much of that.

          But blame the pilot doesn’t seem to be likely. Now some hard thinking needs to be done away from the paranoia about attacks. And those with expertise can be listened to – they have some offerings that are possibilities.

  10. Hayden 12

    Brownlee rules out support for Napier-Gisborne railway:

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/hawkes-bay-today/news/article.cfm?c_id=1503462&objectid=11226550

    Some easy votes for Labour from the East Coast electorate?

    • Draco T Bastard 12.1

      It doesn’t matter how good the plan is Brownlee won’t support it as it goes against what the roading lobby want.

  11. captain hook 13

    every time I watch the news on the teavy there is shifty telling another fib about the glorious plate of toast and jam and pie in the sky next week.
    its always next week with him.

  12. stever 14

    All sorts of lessons here: how not to combine averages, how not trust the press, why not to succumb to the “outsource everything” mantra…

    http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/mar/25/nhs-fraud-story-terrible-if-true

  13. Not a PS Staffer 15

    Shame on General Mataparae.
    The former gallant soldier is now sending letters to MPs telling them how to condict themselves when meeting the English monarch’s son.

    I hope the MPs have the self respect to write back to Gerry and to tell him that they do not need lessons from him or anyone on how to conduct themselves. They are elected by the public of NZ to stand up strong: not tody to celebs.

    Gerry Mataparae was not elected and, with an attitude like this, would never be elected.

    The sooner we get to have direct election of a Head of State the better.

    • Puckish Rogue 15.1

      If there were more like Jerry (not Gerry) in parliament then parliament and NZ would be a better place

      • Murray Olsen 15.1.1

        We would certainly know less about anything dodgy our soldiers might do overseas with more like Jerry in responsible positions. I’m not sure that would make NZ a better place.

    • greywarbler 15.2

      What a dreamer you are. An elected Head of State. Who campaigns sucking up all the money he/she can get. So they can live it up. Do you think that some egoist who wants to strut like a rock star is going to be good for us? a

      He/she will look serious and noble or smiley and wavy and crack jokes and know the right way to treat all leaders and which fork to use at dinner etc and be better than what we have, will fill a gap that we don’t have, and will cost us more and more. Soon they will have a building up of resources, their own small jet, their own this, that whatever is suitable for our leading Sir or Madam.

  14. The Cambriudge Branch will hold its AGM this Sunday 10-30am Red Cross Hall Cambridge .Come and meet the members of the branch that has flown the Red Flag for years in Tory Cambridge .Also meet Jamie Strange candidate for Taupo and Cliff Allen candidate for Ham East.
    You are all welcome.

  15. a homeless man has been bashed to death on dominion rd..balmoral..

    ..he had been sleeping-rough behind a disused shop..for a year..

    ..i think it was ‘the year’ that made me go kinda ballistic..

    http://whoar.co.nz/2014/police-are-treating-the-death-of-a-man-who-was-sleeping-rough-on-aucklands-dominion-rd-as-a-homicide-comment-a-pox-on-many-many-people/

    phillip ure..

  16. weka 18

    Green Party gearing up for the election and asking for support –

    In 5 days time we make important financial decisions about the Green Party’s budget for this year’s election.

    We need a strong indication from supporters like you about how much funds we will have to run our campaign.

    That is why I am asking you click here to donate today:
    https://my.greens.org.nz/civicrm/contribute/transact?reset=1&id=19

    The more funds we can confirm by our end of financial year deadline of April 1st, the bigger our campaign to win more Greens in government will be this year.

    Last week our inspiring former Co-leader Jeanette Fitzsimons sent you an email to ask you to donate to our 2014 election campaign. She said this year’s election is critical to the future of our country.

    I couldn’t agree with her more. Only the Green Party has the ideas and leadership needed to drive our country in a new direction.

    With your support we can be the first green government in New Zealand’s history. You and I working together can green our economy, clean up our environment and build a fairer society for all New Zealanders.

    Help us make history in this election. Click here to donate for good green change: https://my.greens.org.nz/civicrm/contribute/transact?reset=1&id=19

    A strong financial position now means we can commit to a big campaign to get our message out to more voters.

    On April 1st we will be weighing up how many billboards we can print, how many advertisements we can place and how many leaflets we can deliver.

    Your gift today means the Green Party will be able to run our strongest campaign ever. Donate now to be part of our biggest campaign ever.

    Together we can win more Greens in government on 20th September.

    Thank you for your generous support

    Dr Russel Norman

    Green Party Co-leader

  17. karol 19

    So the Treasury says that the state owning social assets like schools and hospitals shouldn’t be the default position.

    Then they say they are not for any “ideology”, just wanting best value.

    🙄

    Treasury is questioning the way the Crown manages its assets, suggesting the default setting of state ownership of social assets such as schools and hospitals may not be the most efficient use of government money.

    Treasury this afternoon released its investment statement, a snapshot of the Crown’s assets and liabilities.
    [..]
    “Public ownership needs to be assessed against its ability to deliver on outcomes and value for money, and should not be seen as the default setting”, it stated.

    “Alternative methods of delivery can have benefits over ownership for attaining optimal value for money.

    “An area of focus for Crown agencies to consider was to explore how capital could be recycled to meet changing demands and priorities without incurring unnecessary costs.”

    The statement discusses divestment of assets to fund new investments and also New Zealand’s approach to public private partnerships (PPPs).

    Just looks like aset sales by another name to me.

    • RedLogix 19.1

      Schools and hospitals.

      I think I predicted this some years ago. There is only one sane response – for all the left-wing parties to announce a nationalisation policy.

      Anything sold from here on in will be reacquired back into state ownership with no compensation.

      • geoff 19.1.1

        I’m pro-state owned and run public services but after 30 years of attack from neoliberalism, what is the best way to get from here to there?

        • risildowgtn 19.1.1.1

          sack treasury for a start…..

          • Draco T Bastard 19.1.1.1.1

            +1111

            They’re actually getting worse as their faith comes crashing down under the weight of reality.

          • geoff 19.1.1.1.2

            But that’s just it isn’t it? All of these institutions that you’d have to rely on to at least some extent as a reforming government, eg the government, the media, basically everything, has been thoroughly infested with the free market dreck.

            So you’d have to be sneaky about it, like Douglas, and spring it out of nowhere. There’s no way the Lange Labour government would have been elected if the populace had known what was about to happen. They would have been ridiculed and marginalised by the power of the status quo within all the public institutions and never would have been elected.

            So how could the Left campaign on corresponding grounds when they would equally be ridiculed and marginalised by the power of the status quo within all the now privatised institutions??

            So the only way I can see this happening is either, by being sneaky as fuck, ie trojan horsing your way into power as a centrist, and then springing the new overarching, progressive regime on an unsuspecting population OR wait for the inevitable crisis that will happen if we keep following this market crap and then campaigning upfront with the nationalising policy.

            • Draco T Bastard 19.1.1.1.2.1

              There’s only two legitimate ways I can think of. One is to keep telling people that the present system is wrong, what’s wrong about it and then to tell them what needs to be done to fix it all. Then, when the crash inevitably happens and we get in power we do it all fully and openly. The second would be the same as the first but when we getting into power we put in place a participatory democracy and let the people decide.

    • rhinocrates 19.2

      Then they say they are not for any “ideology”, just wanting best value.

      Which is of course an ideological position, long used by the far right. Any opposition is “political” because “politics” is bad and boring while what they do is “good sense” or “good value”. It is indeed good sense and good value – for the one percent.

      And what can be more political than that?

  18. greywarbler 20

    +100
    If the left wing parties don’t indicate this, then each time there is a change of Party in government, they just pick the scab off any wounds that have healed from the latest round of slashing and carry on the work of bringing a once proud country to its knees.

    We can’t have this business of a parasitical National Party stealing or mismanaging the people’s assets. We want good business ethics from Labour, and we want things run well, but when it’s clear that there is no golden goose laying a golden egg, the enthusiasm of private investors will fall.

  19. Penny Bright 21

    All sorted for the nationa-wide rallies against the signing of the TPPA this Saturday 29 March 2014 at 1pm?

    (I’ll be in Hamilton, but have been helping to organise the Auckland event 🙂

    More details here:

    http://www.itsourfuture.org.nz/why-our-sponsors-are-supporting-the-nationwide-day-of-action/

    Cheers!

    Penny Bright

  20. Penny Bright 22

    FYI:

    26 March 2014

    ‘Open Letter’ reply to Auckland Mayor Len Brown, Chair of the Auckland Council Governing Body – re: the following response I received yesterday to my request for speaking rights at tomorrow’s meeting:

    Thank you for for accepting my request for ‘speaking rights’ at tomorrow’s Governing Body meeting.

    However, I note that some person / persons from Auckland Council are attempting to restrict what I can say, about the four complaints which I filed with Auckland Central Police:

    “Your request for speaking rights at the 27 March Governing Body meeting has been accepted but only to talk about issues 2) and 3).

    It has been decided that it is not appropriate for you to talk about any complaints being handled by the Police at the Governing Body meeting.”

    I do not accept that ANY person at Auckland Council has the lawful right to attempt to censor or restrict my LAWFUL right to freedom of expression, as guaranteed under s.14 of the NZ Bill of Rights Act 1990:

    http://www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/1990/0109/latest/DLM225513.html

    14Freedom of expression
    Everyone has the right to freedom of expression, including the freedom to seek, receive, and impart information and opinions of any kind in any form.

    FYI – Police have made determinations in the first three out of four of the above-mentioned complaints, and I am still awaiting their decision on the fourth.

    None of these matters are before the Court.

    I am unsure as to whom has made the decision that “…it is not appropriate for you to talk about any complaints being handled by the Police at the Governing Body meeting ..”

    however, I do not accept this decision as being LAWFUL, so please be advised that I WILL briefly covering these matters:

    1) An update on four complaints that I filed with Police:

    a) Alleged money-laundering against Mayor Len Brown.

    b) Alleged bribery and corruption against Mayor Len Brown (a joint complaint with fellow community Public Watchdog Lisa Prager).

    c) Alleged contravention of statute by former Auckland Council CEO, Doug McKay.

    d) Alleged assault against Auckland Council Officers who forcibly removed me from the CEO Review Committee meeting after I was denied speaking rights by Chair Chris Fletcher, when I was attempting to expose, (in my considered opinion), a corrupt ‘conflict of interest’ involving current CEO Stephen Town.

    FYI – please be reminded of the following declaration that ALL Auckland Council elected representatives swore (affirmed) at the public ‘swearing in ceremony’ on 29 October 2013:

    http://www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/2002/0084/latest/DLM175643.html

    Conduct of members
    14Declaration by member
    (1)A person may not act as a member of a local authority until—
    (a)that person has, at a meeting of the local authority following the election of that person, made an oral declaration in the form set out in subclause (3); and
    (b)a written version of the declaration has been attested as provided under subclause (2).
    ………………..
    (3)The form of the declaration must consist of the following elements:

    Declaration by mayor or chairperson or member

    “I, AB, declare that I will faithfully and impartially, and according to the best of my skill
    and judgment, execute and perform, in the best interests of [region or district], the powers,
    authorities, and duties vested in, or imposed upon, me as [mayor or chairperson or
    member] of the [local authority] by virtue of the Local Government Act 2002, the
    Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987, or any other Act

    Dated at: [place, date]
    Signature:
    Signed in the presence of:
    CD, [mayor or chairperson or member or chief executive of local authority]”.

    (My underlining).

    Kind regards,

    Penny Bright

    ‘Anti-corruption / anti-privatisation Public Watchdog’

    Attendee: 2009 Australian Public Sector Anti-Corruption Conference
    Attendee: 2010 Transparency International Anti-Corruption Conference
    Attendee: 2013 Australian Public Sector Anti-Corruption Conference

    2013 Auckland Mayoral candidate

    http://www.pennybright4mayor.org.nz
    http://www.occupyaucklandvsaucklandcouncilappeal.org.nz

  21. Penny Bright 23

    FYI:

    26 March 2014

    ‘Open Letter’ reply to Auckland Mayor Len Brown, Chair of the Auckland Council Governing Body – re: the following response I received yesterday to my request for speaking rights at tomorrow’s meeting:

    Thank you for for accepting my request for ‘speaking rights’ at tomorrow’s Governing Body meeting.

    However, I note that some person / persons from Auckland Council are attempting to restrict what I can say, about the four complaints which I filed with Auckland Central Police:

    “Your request for speaking rights at the 27 March Governing Body meeting has been accepted but only to talk about issues 2) and 3).

    It has been decided that it is not appropriate for you to talk about any complaints being handled by the Police at the Governing Body meeting.”

    I do not accept that ANY person at Auckland Council has the lawful right to attempt to censor or restrict my LAWFUL right to freedom of expression, as guaranteed under s.14 of the NZ Bill of Rights Act 1990:

    http://www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/1990/0109/latest/DLM225513.html

    14Freedom of expression
    Everyone has the right to freedom of expression, including the freedom to seek, receive, and impart information and opinions of any kind in any form.

    FYI – Police have made determinations in the first three out of four of the above-mentioned complaints, and I am still awaiting their decision on the fourth.

    None of these matters are before the Court.

    I am unsure as to whom has made the decision that “…it is not appropriate for you to talk about any complaints being handled by the Police at the Governing Body meeting ..”

    however, I do not accept this decision as being LAWFUL, so please be advised that I WILL briefly covering these matters:

    1) An update on four complaints that I filed with Police:

    a) Alleged money-laundering against Mayor Len Brown.

    b) Alleged bribery and corruption against Mayor Len Brown (a joint complaint with fellow community Public Watchdog Lisa Prager).

    c) Alleged contravention of statute by former Auckland Council CEO, Doug McKay.

    d) Alleged assault against Auckland Council Officers who forcibly removed me from the CEO Review Committee meeting after I was denied speaking rights by Chair Chris Fletcher, when I was attempting to expose, (in my considered opinion), a corrupt ‘conflict of interest’ involving current CEO Stephen Town.

    FYI – please be reminded of the following declaration that ALL Auckland Council elected representatives swore (affirmed) at the public ‘swearing in ceremony’ on 29 October 2013:

    http://www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/2002/0084/latest/DLM175643.html

    Conduct of members
    14Declaration by member
    (1)A person may not act as a member of a local authority until—
    (a)that person has, at a meeting of the local authority following the election of that person, made an oral declaration in the form set out in subclause (3); and
    (b)a written version of the declaration has been attested as provided under subclause (2).
    ………………..
    (3)The form of the declaration must consist of the following elements:

    Declaration by mayor or chairperson or member

    “I, AB, declare that I will faithfully and impartially, and according to the best of my skill
    and judgment, execute and perform, in the best interests of [region or district], the powers,
    authorities, and duties vested in, or imposed upon, me as [mayor or chairperson or
    member] of the [local authority] by virtue of the Local Government Act 2002, the
    Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987, or any other Act

    Dated at: [place, date]
    Signature:
    Signed in the presence of:
    CD, [mayor or chairperson or member or chief executive of local authority]”.

    (My underlining).

    Kind regards,

    Penny Bright

    ‘Anti-corruption / anti-privatisation Public Watchdog’

    Attendee: 2009 Australian Public Sector Anti-Corruption Conference
    Attendee: 2010 Transparency International Anti-Corruption Conference
    Attendee: 2013 Australian Public Sector Anti-Corruption Conference

    2013 Auckland Mayoral candidate

    http://www.pennybright4mayor.org.nz
    http://www.occupyaucklandvsaucklandcouncilappeal.org.nz

  22. A VOTER 24

    John Keys election PR
    I am greater than the sum of all the other parties
    My advice :Stay overseas John we are sick of you and your selling off our country

  23. A VOTER 25

    Pula Benifits latest piece of fascist legislation should be turned back into wood and used as her coffin after the election, thanks John FOR THE EARLY ELECTION
    Maybe she should have had more children instead of stealing ours

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Widening Access to Contraceptives Welcomed
    Associate Health Minister Julie Anne Genter welcomes PHARMAC’s move to improve access to long-acting reversible contraception (LARCs). PHARMAC has today announced it will fund the full cost of Mirena and Jaydess for anyone seeking long term contraception, lifting previous restrictions on access to Mirena. “I welcome women having greater choices ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 hours ago
  • Major upgrade for Taranaki Base Hospital
    The Government has approved the next stage of a major redevelopment of Taranaki Base Hospital, which will deliver new and improved facilities for patients. Health Minister Dr David Clark has announced details of a $300 million dollar project to build a new East Wing at the New Plymouth hospital. It ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Extra support for rural families
    Extra funding will allow Rural Support Trusts to help farming families, says Minister for Rural Communities and Agriculture Damien O’Connor. “I know that rural families are worried about some of the challenges facing them, including the ongoing uncertainty created by the Mycoplasma bovis outbreak. “Those concerns sit alongside ongoing worries ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Howard Leaque Beekeeper programme graduation
    Thank you for the opportunity to be here to present certificates to the 16 graduates who have completed a beekeeping course delivered by the Howard League.  Let us start by acknowledging Auckland Prison’s Deputy Prison Director Tom Sherlock, and Acting Assistant Regional Commissioner of Corrections Northern Region Scott Walker - ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Finance Minister to attend APEC meetings
    Finance Minister Grant Robertson leaves this weekend to attend the APEC Finance Ministers meeting in Santiago, Chile. Discussions between APEC Finance Ministers at the meeting will include the effects of the current global economic uncertainty, risks for APEC economies and sustainable development of the region. While at APEC Grant Robertson ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Pacific languages are a source of strength, they ground us and build confidence
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio says for Pacific people, language can be a source of strength. It can help ground us and give us confidence. When we speak them, our languages provide us with an immediate and intimate access to our identity and our story - and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Major boost to support disabled people in sport and recreation
    The Coalition Government has announced an action plan to improve the wellbeing of disabled New Zealanders by addressing inequalities in play, active recreation and sport. The initiative includes training to develop a workforce that understands the needs of children and young people with a range of impairments, advocacy for fit ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • More prefab homes to be built as red tape cut
    The construction sector is being freed up to allow more homes to be built more quickly as the Government cuts through some of the red tape of the Building Act.  “Every New Zealander deserves a warm, dry, safe home and old inefficiencies in the Building Act make building slow and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Further details of Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall visit to New Zealand
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has welcomed further details on the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall’s visit to New Zealand next month. Their Royal Highnesses will visit New Zealand from 17-23 November – their third joint visit to New Zealand and first in four years. They arrive in Auckland ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • O’Connor in Thailand to push for RCEP deal
    Minister of State for Trade and Export Growth and Minister of Agriculture, Damien O’Connor, heads to Thailand today to attend the final Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) Ministerial meeting, as negotiations enter their final stages. “The RCEP Agreement would anchor New Zealand in a regional agreement that covers 16 countries, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Young Pacific people can access earning and learning opportunities in Hawke’s Bay, Otago and South...
    Pacific young people living in the Hawke’s Bay, Southland and Otago regions will have access to support services that have proved successful in helping young people find new earning and learning opportunities. “Tupu Aotearoa is about changing Pacific young peoples’ lives. Our young people are talented, they are smart, they ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Protecting wellbeing – ACC HQSC Trauma Forum
    Introduction As the Minister for ACC I thank you all for the work that you do supporting New Zealanders in their literally most vulnerable moments. From those who hold people’s lives in their hands, to the people who research technique, technology and trends, your work is highly valued. A special ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • NZ economy in good shape – notes prepared for speeches in Christchurch
    Notes prepared for speeches in Christchurch – Wednesday 9 October 2019 Today’s topic, “trends and opportunities for the New Zealand economy,” is certainly one getting a great deal of commentary at the moment. Looking across the media landscape lately you’ll notice we aren’t the only ones having this discussion. There ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • World Mental Health Day a reminder of the importance of mental health work
    Minister of Health Dr David Clark and Associate Minister of Health Peeni Henare say this year’s World Mental Health Day theme is a reminder of why the Government’s work on mental health is so important. “This year the World Federation for Mental Health has made suicide prevention the main theme ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Cultural Ministers Meeting
    Associate Arts, Culture and Heritage Minister Carmel Sepuloni will represent the government at Australia’s Meeting of Cultural Ministers in Adelaide this week. “This year’s meeting is special because New Zealand is expected to become an International Member of the Meeting of Cultural Ministers at this Australian forum,” Carmel Sepuloni said. “The meeting is an opportunity to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • 608 claims resolved by GCCRS in first year
    The Greater Christchurch Claims Resolution Service has resolved 608 insurance and EQC claims in its first year in operation, Minister Megan Woods has announced. The government service, which celebrates its first birthday today, provides a one stop shop to help Cantabrians still battling to get their homes repaired or rebuilt ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • NZ economy in good shape
    Today’s topic, “trends and opportunities for the New Zealand economy,” is certainly one getting a great deal of commentary at the moment. Looking across the media landscape lately you’ll notice we aren’t the only ones having this discussion. There has been an increasing amount of attention paid to the outlook ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • NZTA to refocus on safety following review
    The Government is acting swiftly to strengthen NZTA’s regulatory role following a review into the Transport Agency, and Ministry of Transport’s performance as its monitor, Transport Minister Phil Twyford said today. An independent review by Martin Jenkins has found NZTA failed to properly regulate the transport sector under the previous ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Joint Cooperation Statement on Climate Change between the Netherlands and New Zealand
    The Netherlands and New Zealand have a long-standing and close relationship based on many shared interests and values. We value the rule of law, our democracies, and multilateralism.  And we value our environment – at home and globally. Right now there are major global challenges in all of these areas – ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government putting right Holidays Act underpayment in Health
    The Government is putting right a decade’s worth of underpayment to nurses, doctors and other health workers, says Health Minister Dr David Clark.  Initial sampling of District Health Boards payroll records has found that around $550-$650 million is owed to DHB staff to comply with the Holidays Act. It’s expected ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government accounts show strong economy
    A strong surplus and low debt show the economy is performing well, and means the Government is in a good position to meet the challenges of global economic uncertainty. “The surplus and low levels of debt show the economy is in good shape. This allows the Government to spend more ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Ministers approve application to expand Waihi mine
    New applications from mining company OceanaGold to purchase land in Waihi for new tailings ponds associated with its gold mines have been approved. Minister of Finance Grant Robertson and Associate Minister of Finance David Parker considered the applications under the Overseas Investment Act. Earlier this year, applications from OceanaGold to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Tuia 250 Voyage flotilla launches with tribute to tangata whenua
    New Zealanders in Tūranganui-a-Kiwa / Poverty Bay will witness Māori, Pākehā and Pacific voyaging traditions come together today as the Tuia 250 Voyage flotilla assembles for the first time, Māori Crown Relations: Te Arawhiti Minister Kelvin Davis says. “Tuia 250 is a national commemoration and an opportunity for honest conversations ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Visit to advance trade agenda with Europe and the Commonwealth
    Minister for Trade and Export Growth David Parker leaves tomorrow for Dubai, London and Berlin for a series of meetings to advance New Zealand’s trade interests.  In Dubai he will visit New Zealand’s Pavilion at Expo 2020 where construction is underway.  There he will meet Minister of State for International Cooperation, Her ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • More cancer drugs confirmed – even more on horizon
    Confirmation that PHARMAC will fund two new cancer drugs is further evidence of the good progress the Government is making to improve the treatment of New Zealand’s leading cause of death, Health Minister David Clark says. From 1 December PHARMAC will fund alectinib (Alecensa) for ALK positive advanced non-small cell ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Boost for women in high performance sport
    An additional $2.7 million has been announced for the Government Strategy for Women and Girls in Sport and Active Recreation on the first anniversary of the strategy’s launch. Sport and Recreation Minister Grant Robertson gave the opening address to the first Sport NZ Women + Girls Summit in Wellington today, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Parent support to help retain skilled migrants
    As part of its work to ensure businesses can get the skilled workers they need, the Coalition Government is re-opening and re-setting the Parent Category visa programme, Immigration Minister Iain Lees-Galloway says. The move will: support skilled migrants who help fill New Zealand’s skills gaps by providing a pathway for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Senior NZDF Officer to lead Peacekeeping Mission in the Sinai Peninsula, Egypt
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark has today announced Major General Evan Williams of the New Zealand Defence Force has been selected as the commander of a significant, longstanding peacekeeping mission in the Middle East. In December, Major General Williams takes over as Force Commander for the Multinational Force and Observers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Nurses star as Govt rebuilds health workforces
    A record number of nurses are now working to deliver health services to New Zealanders as the Government’s increased funding and new initiatives rebuild key workforces start to show results, Health Minister Dr David Clark says. •    1458 more DHB nurses since the Government took office •    106 more midwives ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New agricultural trade envoy appointed
    Farmer and former Nuffield scholar Mel Poulton has been appointed New Zealand’s Special Agricultural Trade Envoy, Minister for Trade and Export Growth, David Parker, and Minister of Agriculture, Damien O’Connor, announced today. The position supports key Government objectives, including raising the value of New Zealand agricultural goods and services. Mel is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Pacific and Māori voyaging heritage celebrated for Tuia 250
    New Zealand’s Pacific and Māori voyaging heritage is acknowledged and celebrated today as waka of the Tuia 250 voyage flotilla arrive in Tūranga / Gisborne. “Today we celebrate Tangata Whenua, the first people of Aotearoa, and the triumphs of the voyaging tradition that brought our ancestors here from Polynesia 1000 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Pacific languages are a root from which prosperity will grow
    “Fijian Language Week starts on Sunday and the theme reminds us how important it is that we each have something to anchor ourselves to, something that can help us pause and feel in control in a rapidly changing world,” says Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio. “Family, culture, faith, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • NZ Government establishes innovative, industry-focused Airspace Integration Trials Programme
    The Government is establishing an Airspace Integration Trials Programme to support the safe testing and development of advanced unmanned aircraft and accelerate their integration into the aviation system, Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods announced today. The Government will work with leading, innovative aviation industry partners to test and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Safety upgrades and certainty for Ōtaki highway
    Transport Minister Phil Twyford today welcomed the NZ Transport Agency’s decision to fund urgent safety improvements and confirm the designation of the Ōtaki to North of Levin highway. Safety upgrades will be made along 23.4km of the existing state highway, running along SH1 from the end of the Peka Peka ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Playing our part to support refugees in our region and the world
    New Zealand playing its part in Asia-Pacific and globally are behind changes announced today to the Coalition Government’s three year refugee quota policy, Immigration Minister Iain Lees-Galloway says. “We are proud to be a welcoming and inclusive nation committed to supporting some of the world’s most vulnerable people to rebuild ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Supporting thriving inclusive communities
    Creating thriving regions and inclusive local communities is the aim of the Welcoming Communities programme being rolled out across the country, says Immigration Minister Iain Lees-Galloway today. A successful pilot of the scheme ran over the last 2 years led by Immigration New Zealand and involved ten councils across five regions ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Takahē population flying high
    Takahē may be flightless but their population is flying high with the official count reaching 418 after a record breeding season that produced an estimated 65 juveniles, the Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage announced today. “The population reaching a high of 418 is great news for takahē which were considered ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand makes further climate commitments
    New Zealand is today taking action to reduce the potent global warming hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) gases, Climate Minister James Shaw and Associate Environment Minister Eugenie Sage announced today. “The global agreement to reduce these potent greenhouse gases is another step in New Zealand’s commitment to reduce global warming. It is estimated ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • PGF boosts job training in Turangi and Whanganui
      The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) through its skills and employment programme, Te Ara Mahi, will invest nearly $600,000 to ensure work opportunities for locals in Turangi and Whanganui, Parliamentary Under Secretary for Regional Economic Development Fletcher Tabuteau announced today. “I’m pleased to announce the PGF is investing in these innovative ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Government levels electricity playing field for consumers
    Consumers will benefit from changes to the electricity market that will see a level playing field for smaller independent retailers, greater transparency over the big power companies, increased competition in the market and more support for consumers to shop around for better deals, Minister Megan Woods has announced. The changes ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago