Open mike 26/11/2015

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, November 26th, 2015 - 230 comments
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openmikeOpen 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 …

230 comments on “Open mike 26/11/2015”

  1. One Anonymous Bloke 1

    Will anyone be surprised if the National Party has vandalised the Prison Inspectorate over the last seven years, resulting in a sloppy report that lets SERCO off the hook?

    • McFlock 1.1

      lefties will be unsurprised, and tory shills will say “Labour did it too so it’s ok”.

      At least they can’t go through investor-state dispute settlement and argue that a negative report might harm their business…

  2. Skinny 2

    I have been watching the collapse of the Dunedin branch of Labour closely, obviously there is deep disappointment of the Party’s ‘National lite’ appearance by some of the Labour membership.

    Chris Trotter has scribed a reveiw which I’ve just read. So just to add to what is being said.

    This is not the only Branch having problems, there is another one where the lead executives recently resigned, and the Branch is being managed out of HQ. One of the reasons appears to be the influence (not the resigning ones) of neo liberals within the executive committee, some being pro Robertson fans, who prior to the last election pushed some of those unpopular policies like the attack of workers, the raising of the retirement age. One party member resigned her membership in disgust with the final straw being the pro TPPA stance, she is now supporting NZF saying they have become Left of Labour with many better socialist policies. Peters has been very good opposing the TPPA I must say.

    It was a very disappointing move which surprised myself also.
    Labour really does need to make there mind up Left or Centre Right.

    • McFlock 2.1

      I’m more interested in the other branch you mentioned – got any more info?

    • What other branch are you referring to, Skinny? Not saying you’re wrong, I’m just not aware of that situation.

      Re: the now defunct branch in Dunedin, it was just an ego driven wankfest anyway. It’s demise is a cause for celebration. You’ll have spotted that the vocal members of it aren’t actually leaving Labour, they just didn’t have what it took to keep a branch going. There are many other properly run branches in Dunedin for those members to get active in, if they want to.

      • weka 2.2.1

        “You’ll have spotted that the vocal members of it aren’t actually leaving Labour, they just didn’t have what it took to keep a branch going”

        Citation needed.

        • Pascals bookie 2.2.1.1

          Well CV was asked if he was leaving Labour, and pointedly didn’t answer the actual question.

          If they are quitting the party, it should be easy enough to say so. Why wouldn’t you say so? And if you won’t say so, then it’s safe to assume they are not, I would think.

          • Colonial Viper 2.2.1.1.1

            Hey PB, I didn’t say so because it’s none of your business and I don’t report to either you or TRP.

            • Pascals bookie 2.2.1.1.1.1

              lol.

              Like I said,

              “If they are quitting the party, it should be easy enough to say so. Why wouldn’t you say so? And if you won’t say so, then it’s safe to assume they are not”

              None of it is anyone’s business. Why ‘report’ that you are throwing your toys out of the cot anyway? You want it known that certain things have happened, that your principles mean that blah blah blah. And yet you refuse, again, to say if y’all will quit the party. Whatever.

              There are no demands being made that you answer, just questions being asked, and yes, people are fully entitled to assume things if you decide not to answer simple questions about a subject you have very publically raised.

              • Grant

                You’re entitled to draw inferences or make assumptions, but presenting an assumption as though it’s a fact is spurious.

                • Pascals bookie

                  Fair enough. If you go back through CVs comments on any given subject, you will find all the examples of that you could possibly want. 🙂

                • weka

                  +1

                  By all means ask the questions Pb, and speculate as you will. I can think of reasons why someone might not want to answer. For instance if someone did that nasty character assassination shit to me over multiple days I also wouldn’t tell them anything about my life. Or, I can see that members might have any number or reasons that might not be apparent.

                  I’d still like to see a link that backs up the assertion that vocal ABP members (pl) haven’t resigned. I might have missed it. Or trp is making shit up.

              • Colonial Viper

                None of it is anyone’s business. Why ‘report’ that you are throwing your toys out of the cot anyway?

                Well, it made a popular post on The Standard. Over 300 comments.

                • weka

                  everything else aside I don’t get this criticism. Having followed a bit on ts what the APB did I appreciated the announcement. Why wouldn’t that be announced?

                  • Pascals bookie

                    It’s not a criticism.

                    It’s simply a fact. There was no ‘need’ to report anything at all, just as there is no ‘need’ for CV to say if he has quit the party.

                    He is refusing to say however. (As is his right). All I was saying is that contra his smarmy response, no one is demanding he report, just as no one demanded he write his post.

                    He chose to do one, and not the other. These are his choices. As is his choice to respond with weird implications that I am demanding anything of him.

                    • Grant

                      One question, one refusal to answer, fine.
                      Repeated variations of the question, combined with turning a specious assumption into a factoid, borders on harassment.

                    • Pascals bookie

                      What ‘specious assumption’?

                      It is a perfectly reasonable question, the refusal to answer it is less reasonable. The style of refusal, even less reasonable still.

                    • Grant

                      The specious assumption is that CV’s refusal to answer = a negative reply to the question. We’ve already canvassed the fact that this is the inference you and TRP have chosen to draw from his non-answer. An assumption is just that, it’s an assumption. It becomes specious when it is presented as a fact. You have already stated that CV is well within his rights to refuse an answer. You are now claiming that his refusal is not reasonable.

                    • Pascals bookie

                      Given there is no evidence at all to think he has quit the party, and that he twists and turns to avoid answering the question, I think the assumption he hasn’t quit has strong merit. Not specious at all.

                      He has the right not to answer, but that doesn’t mean it is reasonable to not answer.

                      If you want to play logic games, I can play them all day Grant.

                      CV made a big song and dance in public about how he feels about the Labour Party. That’s fine, obviously. He has been a strong critic, that too is obviously fine.

                      I think it is reasonable for other party members, and other members of his audience to have an answer to the question about whether or not he has quit the party as part of his disillusionment with it, or if he intends to keep on keeping on fighting it from within.

                    • weka

                      It wasn’t a fact, you asked a question about why announce the branch closure. I’ve seen a number of people criticise that decision to announce and I replied that I appreciated the announcement and can’t see what the problem is. If your question was instead part of a more oblique point about membership, sorry I’ve missed that.

                      I personally don’t believe it’s reasonable to keep asking someone about their membership esp in the context of this much antagonism. I get that quite a few people are annoyed with CV for various reasons, some of that seems valid. But there’s other stuff going on that seems really off.

                    • Pascals bookie

                      It wasn’t a fact, you asked a question about why announce the branch closure.

                      Ok, here’s the full quote. I thought it was clear that the question is rhetorical (I mean, I do answer it myself straight away 🙂 )

                      “None of it is anyone’s business. Why ‘report’ that you are throwing your toys out of the cot anyway? You want it known that certain things have happened, that your principles mean that blah blah blah. And yet you refuse, again, to say if y’all will quit the party. Whatever.”

                      I’m not resposible for what other people have or haven’t said.

                      My sole point is that it is reasonable to ask if he has quit.

                      Here’s why I think that:

                      CV chose to go very public with the decision. He chose to put it here, in a national platform rather than just doing it all locally. He chose to make very strong criticisms of the national Labour Party as and org, and state that the branch could no longer see any point in existing and that they have some osrt of plans about doing something else.

                      Those choices imply that he is in part seeking support for whatever those plans might be, or at the least that he is explaining himself.

                      Given that, I think it is reasonable to know if those plans are outside or inside the party.

                      This is not personal, he is, by posting this stuff here, doing politics. He is seeking support. Answering basic questions is part and parcel of that. Refusal to answer is telling us something.

                    • weka

                      ok, thanks for that, I think I get it now (always better to be direct with me, I miss indirect sometimes 😉 ).

                      My sole point is that it is reasonable to ask if he has quit.

                      Yes, I agree it’s reasonable to ask. I aslo think it’s reasonable for CV (or anyone) to decline to answer, esp in the current climate. We don’t owe each other such things here.

                      Here’s why I think that:

                      CV chose to go very public with the decision. He chose to put it here, in a national platform rather than just doing it all locally. He chose to make very strong criticisms of the national Labour Party as and org, and state that the branch could no longer see any point in existing and that they have some osrt of plans about doing something else.

                      Those choices imply that he is in part seeking support for whatever those plans might be, or at the least that he is explaining himself.

                      Given that, I think it is reasonable to know if those plans are outside or inside the party.

                      This is not personal, he is, by posting this stuff here, doing politics. He is seeking support. Answering basic questions is part and parcel of that.

                      Yes, I largely agree with this, although I would say it’s too soon to go there. When he or any of the group start to talk publicly about what they are doing, then it may be an issue to raise again.

                      Refusal to answer is telling us something.

                      Maybe, but again I’d prefer if people were just up front about their concerns. If you think he is going to stay a member so that he can force Labour to throw him out of the party for instance, then bring that up (it’s been referred to a few times, I don’t see any evidence for that myself) and say why you think that’s important to discuss. I’m not sure how much of that should be done here though tbh, esp if trp is going to behave as he has. That’s out of concern for ts as much as anything, but as I’ve said elsewhere, if this were happening with the GP it’d be putting me off majorly. What’s happened in the past week is a really bad look for Labour and I’m not talking about just what CV has said.

                      I can’t really think of any other reasons why it would be a problem for him to still be a member. Maybe he just wants to keep getting the emails that members get, it could be as simple as that. But ultimately unless the plans for the new group involved actions that are incompatible with being a LP member I’m still not sure if it’s any of our business.

                • Pascals bookie

                  “Well, it made a popular post on The Standard. Over 300 comments.”

                  In the time it took to write that, you could have answered the simple, resonable, and relevant question; or given a reason as to why you refuse.

              • tracey

                agree with this ^^^^^^

                If the organisation I belong to no longer serves me or what I joine dfor, I leave, I don’t stay to destroy it from within. But that’s just me.

                • Karen

                  Me too, Tracey.

                  • weka

                    Me too Tracey and Karen. If this shit was happening, on all sides, in the Green Party, I’d be wanting to leave myself.

                  • The Chairman

                    I wasn’t misrepresenting you, Karen.

                    I was merely clarifying the point in context with the comparison (by Pascals bookie) and sentiment expressed up above (by Tracey) . Which, you agreed with.

                    Little’s approval was reported to have come from a piece in Politik, which sourced it from a spokesperson for Little.

                    This think tank is going to reach out to the right and one can see why a cash strapped party may support the notion.

                    Can you give me an example of what you deem to be provocative coming from CV? Keep in mind, he himself is copping a bit of flack.

                  • The Chairman

                    It’s just the reality of the situation.

                    By the way, we’ve yet to see you back your assertion and prove me wrong.

                • Colonial Viper

                  ask yourself, why are the establishment players like TRP so dead keen that I leave Labour once and for all (given that we know that Labour is quite happy to turn down re-application for membership in the future).

                  • Pascals bookie

                    “ask yourself, why are the establishment players like TRP so dead keen that I leave Labour once and for all.”

                    Grant, can you see an assumption stated as fact there?

                  • tracey

                    Not going to ask myself anything of the sort CV. Merely syaing that if I despised an organisation I belong to as much as you have expressed disdain for the one you are currently in, I would fight, and then when it didn’t change, leave. As I said that is me. You do what you like. Just don’t expect a free ride from those who are in the same organisation and don’t have disdain for it.

                    Are you hoping they will throw you out/dispel you CV?

                    • Karen

                      I am beginning to think that is the agenda here – no other explanation that I can see.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Geeezus, they’re not going to throw me out, I’m insignificant in the scheme of things. Especially considering the level of bullshit and blunder from Pagani, Nash, Curran et al, and they are all welcome to stay in the party.

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    …so dead keen that I leave…

                    No-one has made any such statement, although being so misrepresented is probably grounds for the sentiment.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      No-one has made any such statement, although being so misrepresented is probably grounds for the sentiment.

                      You really are not this stupid, right?

                      Hey maybe you are right and I am wrong about what I am reading between the lines, and TRP and co. are actually quite happy for me to stay in the party. But seriously, unless you absolutely need it spelt out for you, I don’t think so.

                    • Pascals bookie

                      Grant and Weka:

                      “Hey maybe you are right and I am wrong about what I am reading between the lines, and TRP and co. are actually quite happy for me to stay in the party. But seriously, unless you absolutely need it spelt out for you, I don’t think so”

                      See, it was an assumptioon stated as fact.

                      Acknowledge whenever you like.

                  • lurgee

                    ask yourself, why are the establishment players like TRP so dead keen that I leave Labour once and for all (given that we know that Labour is quite happy to turn down re-application for membership in the future).

                    That would appear to confirm that he has not left, and does not intend to do so any time soon.

                • The Chairman

                  @ Tracey

                  I don’t see how pointing out what he believes Labour are doing wrong as destroying the party.

                  • Pascals bookie

                    Pagani and the likes reckon the same; that constant public self aggrandising sniping about the fact you are in a minority and can’t get your way is a healthy thing.

                    • Karen

                      Excellent comparison PB

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Yeah OK, Josie Pagani and Colonial Viper both sit in the same box of Labour Party dissenters, while in reality Labour is right on track to win if it weren’t for these meddling kids.

                      How stupid.

                    • The Chairman

                      Interesting you bring up Pagani.

                      Hasn’t she been given party approval for a right leaning think-tank while further pushing the Party divide and the need to go right?

                      Her dividing right leaning ways seems to muster more Party support than CV wanting to go left.

                      Moreover, she does it in a far more public way, often portrayed as a left wing or Labour commentator in the MSM.

                    • Karen

                      Pagani and CV have different political beliefs but the the behaviour is starting to look very similar.

                      And the Chairman you are wrong – there was no approval for Pagani’s so-called think tank. Pagani was very happy to report that Little and King both opposed the idea. I think she hoped to be expelled.

                    • Pascals bookie

                      “Yeah OK, Josie Pagani and Colonial Viper both sit in the same box of Labour Party dissenters, while in reality Labour is right on track to win if it weren’t for these meddling kids.”

                      is that what i said? No, it isn’t. You have a real problem being honest eh CV.

                      But at least you don’t try and deny that you and Pagani use the same basic playbook I described. Curious that.

                    • The Chairman

                      @ Karen

                      Pagani and CV are pushing their political (albeit different) points of view. That’s not destroying the party.

                      If the party can’t withstand pundits expressing their view, then the Party is clearly on shaky ground.

                      The difference is Pagani wants to take the party further right, away from it’s founding principles (and further from its potential coalition partners). Whereas, CV wants to return to them.

                      Party leader Andrew Little said he was happy with it (the think-tank).
                      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11463086

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Little had to take that position because a fair number of Labour caucus MPs spoke for Pagani’s right leaning initiative.

                    • Karen

                      The Chairman – I said nothing about destroying the party. Like CV you keep misrepresenting what people say.

                      I don’t see a direct quote from Andrew Little in the Claire Trevett article so as far as I can see this is just speculation. I do remember Pagani on Morning Report saying both King and Little were opposed to the idea, particularly King. I am sure Pagani was desperate for a public spat but Little sensibly did not oblige.

                      I criticise both Labour and the Greens occasionally, even though I am a supporter of both parties and CV is perfectly entitled to criticise any political party, whether he is a member or not.
                      However, the way he has been doing this recently seems to be deliberately provocative and I am starting to question his agenda. .

                  • Tracey

                    If you dont think he ants to tear it down and recreate it an image he agrees with, all power to you.

          • Bill 2.2.1.1.2

            If you dig back through CVs comments (a mission no doubt 😉 ) you will come across an instance from about a week ago I think (this is from memeory) where he thanks someone for reminding him to cancel his AP.

            Draw your own infererences?

            • te reo putake 2.2.1.1.2.1

              That doesn’t make it a resignation. There are various forms of contributions; one off payments through to regular monthly DD’s. Stopping a DD changes nothing. The person concerned is happy to let people think this is a resignation (he sure fooled Chris Trotter!) but he is still a member.

              • Bill

                I neither know nor care whether he’s still a member, in the same way that I neither know nor care whether other people who were involved with the ABP branch are members.

                I’m also somewhat amused that such a ‘nothing’ – (ie, a branch going into recess) is causing so much frothing at the mouth!

                That some people involved or mired in whatever shenanigans that may or may not have transpired have a need to vent is, to my miind, understandable and not any reason for ‘pistols at dawn’.

                Under ‘busiiness as usual’ that post would have disappeared after half a day given that it was posted at night. But then the ‘big stick’ responses began to flow….

                Oh yeah. And Chris trotters piece is cringe-worthy nonsense in my opinion, but hey.

                • Agree about Trotter. And verging on racist to boot.

                • Colonial Viper

                  I’m fairly sure Chris Trotter will do his usual thing with regards to commenting about me – I’m the fashionable flavour of topic today, goneburger fad tomorrow.

                  • tracey

                    Puts em in mind of a famous quote

                    There is only one thing in life worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about.
                    Oscar Wilde

      • Tracey 2.2.2

        Try writing future posts without such phrases as “ego driven wankfest”, especially when you are

        A. an author at TS; and
        B. the subject of your vitriol is an author at TS

        And yeah, consider this a warning TRP

        • Tracey 2.2.2.1

          And I don’t care if it is Open Mike. We are authors and need to set a standard and this thing between you and CV is distasteful and very testosterony (I refer to your choice of epithet above)

        • te reo putake 2.2.2.2

          [TRP time to chill it – MS]

          • weka 2.2.2.2.1

            That’s easily the most disingenuous comment I’ve seen on ts in a long time and I’ve never see such from an author before. How embarassing for this place.

            Kia kaha Tracey. Completely agree about the macho stuff.

            • Lanthanide 2.2.2.2.1.1

              +1

            • te reo putake 2.2.2.2.1.2

              Actually it’s not disingenuous at all, weka. It is entirely consistent with the TS policy not to out pseudo-anonymous commenter’s real life identities. My comment was about the negative actions of Labour Party member Tat Loo.

              see more here: http://thestandard.org.nz/abp-branch-of-labour-goes-into-recess-all-branch-officers-resign/#comment-109947

              • Colonial Viper

                And you wag your finger at me as being the passive aggressive one. Geeezus mate.

                • Take it up with Bill, CV. He’s the one who banned someone yesterday for conflating you and the bloke from Dunedin I mentioned above. My argument is with the guy from Dunedin, not you. Apparently.

                  • Lanthanide

                    Your comments from #23 onwards on that post are clearly referring to CV, not “the guy from Dunedin”.

                    • Yes, because CV wrote that post. I didn’t use the name of the guy from Dunedin at all in any of my comments because I’m polite and because it’s not appropriate to conflate the two here at TS. Apparently.

                      Look, it’s tricky, Lanth, but the decision was made yesterday to ban someone who crossed that line, so when referring to the shenanigans in Dunedin, I am going to use the real name of the person from Dunedin. If I am replying on a post by an author, I will use the name they prefer. Hope that’s not confusing, but that’s what I understand the current moderation stance to be.

                    • Lanthanide

                      Given it’s already a matter of public record, I find the moderation stance confusing. I suggest that the ban be reversed on that basis that there was no ‘speculation’ as to CVs identity.

                    • weka

                      It’s not tricky, you’re shit stirring. Whatever CV’s sins are your own behaviour is destructive to this place.

                    • weka

                      Lanth, I haven’t seen the ban or moderation, but it’s pretty straight forward imo. If someone is using a pseudonym then refer to that and not their real life ID unless they give specific permission. It’s about respect for the principle, and that principle is designed to create safety.

                      There may be an issue about whether CV should have put up a formal notice under his real name or not, but tbh given the amount of attacks he gets on his real life for no good reason I can understand why he might choose his pseudonym.

                    • tracey

                      Lanth

                      First someone has to search to find it.

                      Second, it appeared to me, from the way the conversation was progressing, if we are talking about KK (and I don’t know who we are talking about to be honest) , that it was deliberate to name him and bring his real name into something which could stand perfectly without that information. IOW it seemed to me, weighing up all that had gone before it was a deliberate outing.

                      People could search if they wanted to know without that action.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      I suggest that the ban be reversed on that basis that there was no ‘speculation’ as to CVs identity.

                      I prefer to be known as CV or Colonial Viper on The Standard, Lanth. That’s why I use that handle. If nothing else, its rude nettiquette to ignore that.

                      However, some of the little shits who turn up like to use my full name instead of my pseudonym as a cheap intimidation trick. Just to remind me that they know who exactly I am, whereas they don’t think I know who they are.

                • tracey

                  Perhaps it is time for both of you to step away from the topic for a while… if others want to traverse it, let them at it.

          • te reo putake 2.2.2.2.2

            Sadly, I can’t remember exactly what I wrote there, ms, but it’s sad the censorship is only one way.

        • tinfoilhat 2.2.2.3

          As I have stated before this is one of the reasons I don’t visit the standard as often as I used to.

          As for TRP’s turn of phrase it’s not much different from the sites owner’s behaviour.

      • Skinny 2.2.3

        The branch I am affiliate rep to. Quite a shock when I asked when the next executive meeting was? Only to be told of the resignations.

        I do float around amongst the other party’s and groups and their activities. Like the climate change rally this weekend, but try attend LP meetings and events to.

        • te reo putake 2.2.3.1

          Cheers, Skinny, hope the other members step up. Maybe you should put yourself forward, you’ve got the skills.

          • Skinny 2.2.3.1.1

            I just don’t have the patience to try force out the neo libs within the LEC, or pander to people’s ego’s. And in this Tory held town the votes are minimal. Different story if everyone opposed to the Nats and their candidate voted for the one candidate in the electorate seat. I maintain the one candidate contest is the way forward.

            • Karen 2.2.3.1.1.1

              Please see the comment from Jenny Kirk at 2.5.

              Jenny actually does know what happens in the Labour Party in Whangārei, unlike Skinny.

              • Skinny

                Actually Karen I stand by what I’ve said. Unfortunately as an affiliate rep to the executive committee the ones who resigned failed to inform me.

                Jenny got the wrong end of the stick I never accused her or any of the others who resigned as being neo liberals as I know they are not, I also didn’t say they were GR fans. BTW why did you really feel the need to name the branch? You stupid cow.

        • Kiwiri 2.2.3.2

          Tip of the iceberg.

          Labour’s membership is quite likely to be atrophying with their caucus attempting to sell watered down, bland Nat Lite chase-the-centre/swing voter policies in red bottles.

          Members who have been dispirited or dissatisfied with Labour’s policies have probably been slowly falling away or drifting off and they end up not renewing their membership, rather than explicitly handing in their resignations.

          Will the new President do a ‘stocktake’ of the membership number and their status (e.g. financial, inactive, resigned, deceased) to ascertain the real membership support the Party has? Or are some of the names being kept on the books as phantom members to prop up LEC delegate/voting numbers and their incumbent MPs?

          • BM 2.2.3.2.1

            The problem is Labour will never win with left policies, it has to be center left.

            The Mps know it, Andrew Little knows it, the only people who don’t seem to know it is the members.

            Which makes Labour unelectable for the foreseeable future.

            • Colonial Viper 2.2.3.2.1.1

              Worth noting that Labour’s policies are only maybe ~25% of its issues. Its disconnect with the culture and mood of the electorate is at least as substantial a problem again.

            • te reo putake 2.2.3.2.1.2

              Some members, BM. The vast majority are perfectly happy with the current direction, leadership and policies. And, as the recent polls suggest, Labour are on the cusp of being very electable as the biggest party in some form of coalition. So, the take home message would be ‘never mind the bollocks’.

              • BM

                So, it’s just a noisy minority.?

                Guess, that’s the one draw back with social media, a couple of people can make a hell of a lot of noise, which gives a rather distorted view of what is actually happening.

                • Colonial Viper

                  Just remember that one in five registered voters picked Labour in 2014, which was in itself only a slight drop from 2011. So I think the idea of dissatisfaction with Labour being the province of only a small minority is comforting to the establishment, but problematic to anyone who wanted to see real change coming out of Labour.

                  • BM

                    So, there’s actually quite a lot of dissatisfaction?

                    All smoke and mirrors?

                  • The main change the majority of members want to see is Andrew Little’s title. From leader of the opposition to PM. 😉

                    And, BM, there is no smoke and mirrors. The party is in good heart. Top conference, good membership levels, doing ok in the polls. Could do with some more cash, but you can’t have everything!

                • tracey

                  Like Hooton and Slater you mean, that kind of noise-making which some people then mistake forfacts or truth?

            • tracey 2.2.3.2.1.3

              You do understand the centre has moved quite a bit since 1981 aye BM?

            • Kiwiri 2.2.3.2.1.4

              Oh come on, BM. Labour members are not mushrooms!
              The Labour membership want the right (i.e. best) thing to be done for all in the country, not just the privileged few.
              The caucus and leadership approach in giving up on the missing million, in not speaking up, arguing for and voting for their interests, have let down the collective citizenry.

              • Gosman

                Can you show me a place in the Western World where appealing to the ‘Missing’ voters has paid electoral dividends? Corbyn seems to be tanking and even Syriza is essentially implementing the austerity policies that they have been requested to.

                • galeandra

                  Corbyn seems to be tanking. Citation?

                    • crashcart

                      Funny how you can use language to present a view point. For instance the line where they say 2 in 5 people belive labour should remove him as leader. Wow that sounds like a lot. Wait doesn’t that mean 60% believe he either should remain as leader or have no opinion.

                    • tracey

                      Only 35% polled by TV3 think the TPP is good for NZ. Quik Gosman, rail the Government to not sign.

                    • Gosman

                      His personal popularity is falling. That seems to be a given. He is certainly not reinvigorating the wider support for Labour in the UK either. What makes you think he is anything other than a failure at the moment?

                    • tracey

                      So is Key’s

                      61% in a poll in October 2014

                      now….

                      40-ish%

                    • crashcart

                      OK lets for a second let you put words in my mouth as I never said he was or wasn’t a failure. I just pointed to the emotive use of figures in the artile which would lead me to believe that it was probably never going to give any form of positive press to Corbyn.

                      A failure is a strong word. The guy according to that article still has a 53% approval rating. Should he be concerned that he is dropping? Most definately. I don’t construe that as failure any more than I construe Key’s dropping polls as failure. They are an interesting indication and something both had best look at and assess.

                    • Gosman

                      Key has been in power for 7 years. Corbyn has been leader of the UK Labour party for less than 1. But if you think the signs are positive for Corbyn then more power to you.

                    • crashcart

                      Again please point to where either myself or Tracey said that Corbyn’s dropping poll’s are positive.

                    • Gosman

                      I stated IF you think it is a positive.

                      The point I raised originally is that Corbyn’s appeal to the so called missing left wing voter hasn’t made much of a difference and in fact his popularity has fallen dramatically since his election as UK Labour Leader. This seems to run counter to the arguments made here.

                    • crashcart

                      Perhaps if you reply to people you should expect that people would associate your statements to those reply too. Unless you were just trying to attribute those statements in a dishonest deniable way so that if you get called on it you can use the “I said IF” defence.

                • crashcart

                  You answered your own question. Yes Syriza is not living up to what they seemed to promise but their appeal to left ideals definately paid electoral dividends.

                  • Gosman

                    Not really. At the latest election the number of people who voted for any party fell back to what it was before Syriza’s first victory. Only just over 56% of the electorate bothered to vote. Hardly a sign that the party is energising the lost voters.

                    • crashcart

                      Yes but you could equally argue that is because the electorate felt that their actions did not match their promises from the first election. So there fore moving away from their left principle resulted in a drop electorally.

                    • Gosman

                      That’s probably right to a degree. But there were parties that were even more radical than Syriza running at the election and they didn’t pick up this disatisfied rump of voters.

                    • crashcart

                      Again the words you use explain it. Being left engaged those who felt disenfranchised from their society. When they first got to power there would have been more RADICAL left parties but that is not what people wanted.

                      Your false linking would be like me saying that because National’s numbers are slightly down and the number of Neo Nazi’s haven’t gone up that right wing ideals are not popular. Simply that is not a sensable position to take.

                      In the last 30 years both major parties have made a strong move to the right. This has left a large gap on the left. This coninceded with dropping participation in electoral turn outs.

                      I am not going to conflate causation here but I think it is a difficult push to say that left policies can’t be successful electorally. NZ don’t have a pure left wing party at the moment like Labour use to be. The Greens fill that position somewhat but people still pigeon hole them as only an environmental party and can’t seem to see that they actually offer much more.

                    • Gosman

                      New Zealand does have a left wing political party. It is called Mana. It just isn’t very successful.

                  • crashcart

                    A left wing party that is attached to a leader who rightly or wrongly has an over all negative perception amongst a large portion of Kiwi’s. Again it would be like me saying because Act don’t get any votes then right wing policies are not popular.

                    There is a lot to why a party is or isn’t successful. People on the right keep making the assertion that left wing parties can’t be successful. Based upon no research outside of “I saw da last elecshun”.

                    • In Vino

                      Cashcart – I think you have won this argument, but Gosman is a cunning linguist who changes meanings of words in mid-argument (and no, Gosman, I am not going to bother to give citations) and generally trolls to create as much damage on threads as possible on any lefty thread he can find. I respect Gosman for correct language and skilful deception. Otherwise, I would not bother replying to him. From what I have read to date, It is like swatting flies with a drinking straw. You, Crashcart, are basically honest. I could not possibly say any more about Gosman.

            • The Chairman 2.2.3.2.1.5

              @ BM

              No. The problem is that very notion.

              Labour can indeed win with left wing policy. Take their widely welcomed housing policy for example.

            • Draco T Bastard 2.2.3.2.1.6

              BS

              Labour is losing because it doesn’t do Left any more.

              • Gosman

                The question you don’t really answer is why it doesn’t do Left any more.

                Also how are the political groupings that do do Left fairing around the world? Not very well by most accounts. Corbyn seems to be floundering massively in the UK for example.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  The question you don’t really answer is why it doesn’t do Left any more.

                  I’ve answered that many times over the years – it’s because Labour is a right-wing party.

                  Also how are the political groupings that do do Left fairing around the world? Not very well by most accounts.

                  Yes, the Left need to pull together but mostly the power needs to be taken out of the hands of the rich.

                  Corbyn seems to be floundering massively in the UK for example.

                  [citation needed]

                  • Gosman

                    Link provided above to the issues facing Corbyn.

                    I am more interested in what you think are the reasons why Labour is now a right wing party. Surely you would like to understand this.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      Link provided above to the issues facing Corbyn.

                      Conclusively debunked in the following comments.

                      Surely you would like to understand this.

                      I already understand it and explained it. The problem seems to be that you don’t want to believe it.

              • BM

                Yeah, Nah, those halcyon days were 35 years ago.

                Think about that for a second.
                People who had just started school are now middle age.

                A vast chunk of NZ has grown up without ever experiencing the socialist,big government controls everything approach of the pre 1980’s, the whole concept is totally foreign.

                Facts are, there really is no going back, and if Labour and the rest of the left don’t start looking forward and get into the present, they’ll go the way of the Dinosaurs.

                • Colonial Viper

                  I agree with your comments from the standpoint of the fact that a large part of the Left seems stuck on 20th century answers to 20th century problems.

                  And intuitively, more and more people understand that is just ‘pretend and extend’ BS.

                  (BTW the Right of politics is in no better shape).

                  • BM

                    So you’d agree that electing old guys like Jeremy Corbyn really isn’t a great idea.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      It’s not the age which is the problem re: Corbyn. I think that his tack of decrying austerity which hits the worst off in society is a necessary message for today – but then what? more jobs for everyone? More economic growth for everyone? More income and consumption for everyone?

                      Are we really going to complain about climate change at the same time as we push policies which are going to increase fossil fuel use and consumerism? It doesn’t make any sense, it’s incoherant.

                  • The Chairman

                    The need for economic growth largely comes down to our debt based money supply.

                    Economies are required to grow their wealth (through exports) to cover the interest incurred. Hence, my earlier referral to the Democrats for Social Credit.

                    Additionally, unless we plan to stop population growth, extending life and the demand that creates, further growth will be required.

                    Therefore, the solution is in how are we going to sustain such growth.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      or, we go with another approach – perhaps call it “survival socialism” or strategic “power down” – terms other commentators here at TS have previously used.

                    • The Chairman

                      Ponder this, CV:

                      If new solutions can’t sustain growth to cater for population growth and extending life, the only way we are going to go is backwards, regardless what you call it.

                      And that is the concern about a number of so-called green solutions.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      I’m of the crowd which believes that once fossil fuels goes away (circa 2040 to 2060), the human carrying capacity of the Earth is going to rapidly drop to roughly 1B.

                      That will be due to the loss of the ability to perform industrial agriculture, the loss of globalised logistics and the loss of the maintainability of basic infrastructure and services.

                      If we manage to grow our numbers to 10B before that point, there is going to be a massive cull in the decades after.

                      We already see some interesting trends – in most western countries, the birthrate is only very marginally above replacement levels. Japan face a crisis of a shrinking population while China (and many other countries) faces a crisis of an aging population. In the US the life expectancy of women is declining – as is the life expectancy of working class lower educated whites.

                      We’ve had 200 years of very rapid human population growth – we need to have a think whether or not this trend can continue, or if it is good that it does continue.

                    • The Chairman

                      @ Grant

                      Thanks. It was an interesting read.

                  • The Chairman

                    When coupled with policies of improving inequality, life spans will be extended. Moreover, families will afford to grow larger.

                    Industrial agriculture is evolving

                    • Colonial Viper

                      You can’t synthesise the hydroponic nutrients and build vertical farm structures like that without large starting inputs of fossil fuel energy. Ravensdown Fertiliser down the road from me requires massive inputs of purified chemicals (and phosphate rock mined then shipped in from around the world) in order for them to produce the fertiliser product farmers use.

                      It’s a different vision of the world; not everyone will accept that we cannot ecologically or energetically afford to have 9B, 10B, 11B people on the planet.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      You can’t synthesise the hydroponic nutrients and build vertical farm structures like that without large starting inputs of fossil fuel energy.

                      Yes you can as I’ve explained to you before.

                      Ravensdown Fertiliser down the road from me requires massive inputs of purified chemicals (and phosphate rock mined then shipped in from around the world) in order for them to produce the fertiliser product farmers use.

                      The solution there is use the fertiliser base that comes out of our sewage treatment plants – essentially, rebuilding the natural cycle.

                      Not that I’m in favour of 9+ billion population nor do I think that we’ll make the necessary changes to be able to support that number while being a capitalist society.

                    • greywarshark

                      CV
                      We’ve had 200 years of very rapid human population growth – we need to have a think whether or not this trend can continue, or if it is good that it does continue.

                      The Chairman
                      When coupled with policies of improving inequality, life spans will be extended. Moreover, families will afford to grow larger.
                      Industrial agriculture is evolving

                      CV is forward looking and taking into account known trends of factors in the human condition. The Chairman sounds like one of those comfortable types who has been successful at what he has attempted so far, following present practices and under the present hegemony. He can’t apparently read the warnings and precautions at the bottom of the instruction sheet (or else has followed the popular practice of ‘When all else fails read the instructions’).

                      Superphosphate has been used for yonks in NZ to increase production, grow more grass etc. Contains cadmium, heavy metal
                      and toxic, gets into bones,
                      Farmer urges more cadmium testing
                      http://www.radionz.co.nz/audio/player/201780472

                      Other rural news on RadioNZ – read, listen and learn of the problems of industrialised agriculture.

                      North Canterbury irrigation proposal rejected
                      The water is not limitless – wants are though.)

                      Fonterra to meet with Greenpeace
                      Fonterra and Greenpeace will meet next week to discuss concerns about palm kernel expeller and major fires in Indonesia.

                      Keep an eye out for needle grass, farmers told
                      The stock destroying pasture pest Chilean needle grass is beginning to raise its head and farmers are being advised to keep an eye out.

                      Protesters take on huge caged chicken farm plan
                      Protesters outside the Environment Court in Auckland campaign against a planned caged hen farm.

                      New neonicotinoid studies ring alarm bells – Greens – Bees
                      The Green Party is calling for an urgent EPA review of the pesticides known as neoneonicotinoids.

                      Livestock antibiotics to be replaced with vaccines by 2030
                      Antibiotics for livestock are likely to be replaced with various vaccines by about 2030, and the value of New Zealand meat exports will grow because of the switch.

                      Lifestyle block sales volumes hit record levels again
                      Aerial of small lifestyle blocks in Canterbury.
                      Sales volumes for lifestyle blocks for the three month period ending October have again reached record levels.

                      Councillors’ secret vote to buy water from dam
                      The Central Hawke’s Bay District Council has agreed to buy water from Ruataniwha Water Storage Scheme subject to further due diligence and public consultation.

                      All of these matters pose problems forNZ food production in a healthy sustainable way.

                  • The Chairman

                    Organic hydroponics.

                • The Chairman

                  Those halcyon days were a golden era that a good number of Kiwis have now been robbed of.

                  It was an era that enabled the Kiwi dream.

                  Who wouldn’t want to go back to a time when one income could pay off the family home?

                  A time our health system was internationally marveled, employment opportunity was rife, education was free and our current account was in surplus.

                  Clearly, successfully looking forward requires us to adopt a number of the qualities from the past.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  Who said anything about going back?

                  I’m more after a party that looks after the people and the country rather than the neo-liberal BS we have that looks after the corporations and the rich while screwing down everyone else. I suspect that many people are.

            • savenz 2.2.3.2.1.7

              @BM

              It is the opposite – Labour are appearing too ‘right wing’ not in the middle! They lost the election because they combined right wing foreign neoliberal economic policy with higher taxes for the middle classes! That is not LEFT wing policy that is STUPID policy.

              If Labour bothered to look at corporate welfare and how much tax these companies are paying in this country. Corporations in some cases are paying nothing or very little tax on huge profits.

              But again that does not fit in with neoliberalism, where workers all sweat and toil for the benefit of benevolent business and the ‘greater good’ and then we get the ‘trickle down’ and ‘more jobs’.

              Post Neoliberalism we now have less jobs, lower wages, less taxes from companies and from the fewer jobs and greater inequality.

              Does not sound like a good plan for Labour especially now opening up offshoring of government and council jobs via TPP and unchecked economic profiteering in NZ but all sounds fine to politicians isn’t it?

              • BM

                Are you retired?

              • Gosman

                Labour made noises about companies like Google and Facebook not paying enough taxes here. They didn’t really offer any solutions beyond vaguely suggesting we might be able to do without them if they didn’t. Of course they quickly backtracked on that when they realised the implications.

                • DoublePlusGood

                  The implications of companies that bludge off everyone else would leave and everyone else would no longer have to pay extra tax to make up for their bludging?

                  • Gosman

                    Yep and people wouldn’t be able to use Google or Apple or Facebook any more. If you would like to try and sell that good luck to you.

    • Kiwiri 2.3

      “Labour really does need to make there mind up Left or Centre Right.”

      How about Centre L+ight?
      Or Centre R-eft?
      Some branches should draft a remit to propose making up their minds on that, put it through regional conference next year, vote on it, take it to conference, etc etc etc.

    • Chooky 2.4

      +100…good points Skinny…Labour must do as much as possible to distance itself from jonkey nactional….any agreement or support for Nactional’s policies or jonkey looks like weakness , or worse , a sellout.

      The voters are in NO mood for any support of jonkey nactional

      …and this is something NZF knows and Peters will play up next Election (unfortunately the Greens dont seem to have realised this)

    • Jenny Kirk 2.5

      Load of absolute tripe Skinny. No neo-libs among the executive, nor pro-Robertson fans – spreading this sort of rubbish does no-one (least of all yourself) any good.

      This comment refers to Skinny talking about another “branch” of Labour which he described earlier this morning. My computer wasn’t working this morning so couldn’t reply then.

      However, he continued to repeat it – he does not know what was involved, he has not been at meetings, and he is – as happens quite often – talking thru a hole in his head.

      • Karen 2.5.1

        Thanks for clearing this up Jenny.

      • Skinny 2.5.2

        Jenny I suggest you re-read what I wrote, I referred to you and ya mates as the ones resigning and in brackets state ‘not the ones resigning’ so you messed that up. I was informed of the factions in this LEC before I moved up. Our union is an afiliate and I am the regions rep and you do what have to do. Bit disappointed before you lot through your toys out of the cot ya could have atleast flicked me an email, considering what I did for PN when I was contacted by you know who. Very poor comments indeed Jenny.

  3. weka 3

    Tomorrow some of the citizens of the US will celebrate Refugee Day,

    • tracey 3.1

      Such a huge part of of that population are of refugee or immigrant stock, so many people with such short memories.

  4. Gosman 4

    http://www.internationalpolicydigest.org/2015/11/25/what-s-wrong-with-venezuela/

    “The roots of Venezuela’s economic misfortunes are rooted in five factors: corruption and authoritarianism, the resource curse, the decline of Venezuela’s state oil company, state control over the economy, and drug gangs and violence”

    Three of those five factors are related to old school left wing thinking.

    For those of you who thought that Venezuela was going to offer some sort of new hope for democratic socialism you must be terribly dissapointed now.

    • tracey 4.1

      Wrybill

      Anarhynchus frontalis Quoy & Gaimard, 1830

      Order: Charadriiformes
      Family: Charadriidae
      New Zealand status: Endemic
      Conservation status: Nationally Vulnerable
      Other names: wrybilled plover, ngutuparore, ngutu pare, wrybill plover, crook-bill
      Geographical variation: Nil

      Counts on breeding grounds are impractical – wrybills are highly cryptic and widely dispersed. Combined counts from wintering flocks suggest a total population of 5000-5500. Counts show high variability (which obscures trends), but the population is thought to be declining slowly.

    • One Two 4.2

      Still getting your email address mixed up, and still beating the same old drum

    • Ad 4.3

      We’ve got plenty of socialism here already, it’s just for the wrong people.

      • savenz 4.3.1

        Can I please have 24 million for oil exploration and borrow one of the few NZ vessels that should be helping the marine environment for my project.

        No problem for this government!

        Free money for corporates, come to NZ.

        We’ll even change employment law for you!

  5. Gosman 5

    http://americasquarterly.org/content/venezuelas-media-isnt-smearing-opposition-its-making-them-invisible

    As with many authoritarian regimes the Chavista government in Venezuela is very good at denying access to the media.

    • tracey 5.1

      The great tit (Parus major) is a passerine bird in the tit family Paridae. It is a widespread and common species throughout Europe, the Middle East, Central and Northern Asia, and parts of North Africa in any sort of woodland. It is generally resident, and most great tits do not migrate except in extremely harsh winters. Until 2005 this species was lumped with numerous other subspecies. DNA studies have shown these other subspecies to be distinctive from the great tit and these have now been separated as two separate species, the cinereous tit of southern Asia, and the Japanese tit of East Asia. The great tit remains the most widespread species in the genus Parus…

      …Like all tits it is a cavity nester, usually nesting in a hole in a tree. The female lays around 12 eggs and incubates them alone, although both parents raise the chicks. In most years the pair will raise two broods. The nests may be raided by woodpeckers, squirrels and weasels and infested with fleas, and adults may be hunted by sparrowhawks.

      from wikipedia

      • Sabine 5.1.1

        gosh i love tits, they are just the cutest things

        i mean how an you not like a bird thats called the ‘tufted titmouse”

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tit_(bird)

        thanks for reminding me of these lovelies 🙂

        • tracey 5.1.1.1

          You are welcome but really it was his posts which put me in mind of the wrybill and the great family of Tits.

      • Rosie 5.1.2

        Help me out tracey. I’ve had two hours sleep and am having trouble comprehending the lovely ornithological references in response to Gosman’s favourite topic, Venezuela. 🙂

        EDIT. Oh ok, Have just seen your response to Sabine. Nice work though. I enjoyed the interlude.

        • tracey 5.1.2.1

          😉

          Only two hours? How come?

          • Rosie 5.1.2.1.1

            I live with chronic insomnia. Sometimes I sleep, sometimes I don’t.

            I try not to comment when I’m sleep deprived. I have been hovering over the conversation above with CV, trp and others but am in no fit state to enter into as much as I do have my thoughts on the issue of CV and his comrades actions and the state of the NZLP.

            Birds and bombs. That’s different though.

            • tracey 5.1.2.1.1.1

              Sorry to hear that… sleep deprivation of that kind must be debilitating.

              • Rosie

                Yes it is. It has all sorts of mental and physical consequences. I had to leave my last job because of it. It’s no surprise that sleep dep has been used as a tool of torture for centuries.

                • Brigid

                  Is it Restless Leg Syndrome you suffer from?

                  • Rosie

                    No. Results from depression plus an assortment of physical health problems, both pain from illness and unresolved injuries. Sleep dep compounds the intensity of existing conditions.

                    • The Fairy Godmother

                      I am so sorry to hear this Rosie. It must be very difficult for you. Hope you have a better night tonight.

        • galeandra 5.1.2.2

          Are you demonstrating the truth of Paula Bent’s point about Housing Corp clients who rejected houses because of bird noise?
          You have good reason, of course. Too much wrybilling tittering and gosman honking to let a person carry on sleepwalking like real tories do.

          • In Vino 5.1.2.2.1

            Humour was my first response, but it works only if it helps the sufferer to trivialise their problems. Good point galeandra, and my best wishes to Rosie.

    • Expat 5.2

      Golly Gosman, don’t you think the societal culture in NZ is just a little different from that of any country in Sth America, I can recall Rodney Hide praising them for their low or zero Tax system and thought it would be good idea for NZ , at least compare Apples with Apples.

  6. veutoviper 6

    Well, this is interesting. Not that I have ever used it, other than looking at it.

    IPredict has suspended/wound up its NZ operations due to regulatory problems.

    … As prediction markets do not comfortably fit within any existing regulatory boxes, we have been working closely and positively with the Financial Markets Authority (FMA) to enable us to operate economically within the financial market regulations.
    Regrettably the Ministry of Justice has not been so positive. We applied for an exemption from the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering Financing of Terrorism Act. We believed we would secure an exemption due to the limited possible investment into iPredict trades and the small nature of the Prediction market transactions.
    Our application has been declined by the Minister, Simon Bridges, on the grounds that we are “a legitimate money laundering risk”. This is essentially because we have no customer due diligence checks. He considered the level of regulatory burden is proportionate to the risk. He formed these views without any discussions with us.
    We are an academic not-for-profit organisation and our agreement with the FMA dictates we place caps on transactions. For example, over the past seven years, we have handled a total of 3,782 withdrawals, with an average trader net worth of $41. Our withdrawal process is lengthy and we are a low risk of money laundering.
    Because the cost of compliance is too high, we are forced to wind up operations in NZ. We are looking into the possibility of transferring our prediction activities to be included on PredictIt in the US, but this could take months to work through the regulatory requirements.
    From now on, we are unable to take further deposits, sign ups or place new prediction stocks. We will continue existing stocks and you can continue to trade them.

    Full details in this announcement – https://www.ipredict.co.nz/app.php?do=message

    • tracey 6.1

      Do you think the Right will be pisse doff at being treated like they espouse the Right treat others, or will some heads just explode?

    • Rosie 6.2

      So this means one avenue of dirty politics tactics has been closed down?

      “Slater also used a small sum of money provided by Lusk to manipulate Victoria University’s iPredict rankings on the Rodney candidate and then wrote posts using the iPredict results to reinforce the campaign” etc.

      Dirty Politics. pg.64

  7. Rosie 7

    If someone was planning a malicious act against a group of people, are they really likely to place a bomb right in the middle of a pedestrian lane? Hardly covert is it?

    Yesterday we had a “bomb scare” kerfuffle in Wellington CBD. Several city blocks from Willis st right down to Brandon st were shut down for four hours and our busiest sector of bus corridor was diverted. Buildings were evacuated, and workers sent home early (including Mr R)

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/news/wellington/74429264/police-examine-cctv-footage-over-bomb-scare-that-closed-lambton-quay

    I am wondering if some folks are feeling unnecessarily fearful post Paris attacks and it is leading to catastrophic thinking. The woman who. last week, called the cops when a Sikh man entered the Columbus cafe she was a customer at in Auckland, thinking he was a terrorist, is another example. That was an unfortunate case of prejudice and ignorance induced paranoia. I’m guessing this is another false alarm, triggered by a flair for the irrational.

    • tracey 7.1

      And diversion of resources.

    • greywarshark 7.2

      But he had wires hanging out of his pack. Scary headphones ?

    • alwyn 7.3

      There can, unfortunately, be very good reason to be fearful of the actions of some people in public places.
      It wasn’t that long ago that this happened in Sydney, was it?
      http://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2014/dec/20/sydney-siege-timeline-how-a-day-and-night-of-terror-unfolded-at-the-lindt-cafe
      Those who worry may, and almost always will, be wrong but every once in a while they are right to be concerned.

      As for the statement that “are they really likely to place a bomb right in the middle of a pedestrian lane” you would have to ask “why not?”.
      The Trades Hall bombing in Wellington in 1984 was carried out by someone unknown placing a suitcase in the foyer of the building. It went off when an unsuspecting caretaker picked it up to tidy the area. Hardly covert was it? The case was in open view just off the street.

      • Rosie 7.3.1

        The Trades Hall bombing did cross my mind – during yesterday afternoons commotion. But you can’t even begin to compare the motivations and methods of the event 30 years ago with the current situation.

        Do we really have the population and risk factor that would lead to an event like the Lindt cafe seige? I’m no terror analyst but I don’t think so. I’m more afraid of what our government is going to do next than I am of any potential “terror threat”.

        John Key did say the other day that there are people are who are being surveilled for suspected fund raising for ISIS and suspected of going to fight in Syria, and that surveillance has increased but how likely is their attention to be directed toward their home country? And again, how daft would they be to place a bomb right in the middle of a busy pedestrian access. (Yes, the Trades Hall bomb was in the foyer of the building, not out on the footpath)

        http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/political/290399/increased-watchlist-suspect-threat-pm

        More likely that someone dropped their novelty lunch box or what looks like some part of machinery on the way to or from the cable car.

          • alwyn 7.3.1.1.1

            From this story it appears that he/she was also a complete idiot who tried to make it look like an explosive device. If I was in the area and I found that the Police were not taking it very seriously I would be really p***d off.

            • Rosie 7.3.1.1.1.1

              The Police did take it very seriously alwyn. Mr R, who was caught up in it all noted the Police response. There’s been a massive use of resources to deal with this prank and a lot of disruption and inconvenience caused to commuters and businesses yesterday.

              • alwyn

                I may be misjudging you, and I hope I am but the wording of some of your comments appears to be a case of blaming the police for spending time on this, rather than the idiot who caused the fuss.
                When you say things like
                “are they really likely to place a bomb right in the middle of a pedestrian lane? Hardly covert is it?”
                “That was an unfortunate case of prejudice and ignorance induced paranoia”
                “I’m guessing this is another false alarm, triggered by a flair for the irrational”
                “Do we really have the population and risk factor that would lead to an event like the Lindt cafe siege”
                “how daft would they be to place a bomb right in the middle of a busy pedestrian access”
                “More likely that someone dropped their novelty lunch box”
                Which is then followed by
                “There’s been a massive use of resources to deal with this prank and a lot of disruption and inconvenience caused to commuters and businesses yesterday”
                It comes across as if you think the Police should not have taken much notice, and certainly should not have inconvenienced Mr R because it couldn’t possibly be real in a place like New Zealand and they simply wasted a lot of their own, and other peoples, time and money on something that was obviously not serious.
                I hope you don’t mean that but it is the way it reads to me.
                As far as I am concerned a possible bomb, even if it turns out to be a hoax, is very serious and I want the police to treat it that way. If it is a hoax, and they catch the person who did it I want that person to be punished.
                A month of community service and a fine covering all the costs incurred seems to be a suitable reminder to them, and anyone else, that this behaviour is not acceptable.

      • Tracey 7.3.2

        And all white men werent targetted after that as I recall.

    • Draco T Bastard 8.1

      “Sadly, yet another person now has very disabling injuries because of the dangers associated with log splitters.”

      $40k isn’t enough but the big question we have to ask is:

      The 66-year-old Motueka worker…

      Why was he working there doing that job at all?

    • greywarshark 9.1

      Uncontrolled focus group not totally channelled through nact?

      • Kiwiri 9.1.1

        That’s one way of seeing it, indeed.

        Sorry, I had not noticed an earlier heads up about this (at #6 above) while scrolling through Open Mike.

  8. Gosman 11

    Very funny article about Corbyn’s problems with handling the topic of Defence in the UK Parliament.

    http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2015/nov/23/jeremy-corbyn-goes-on-the-offence-defence-review

  9. vto 12

    What is it with right wing types and their need to constantly have their hands in the taxpayer trough???

    Down here in Canterbury the Ecan dictatorship is in the news again due to the extension of said dictatorship.

    The funny thing, especially in relation to Gosman’s tripe of tits and wrybills above, is that these right wingers have demanded and received taxpayer money and ratepayer money to pay for their businesses.

    Bludgers.

    The farmers are bludgers. The corporates are bludgers. Go fucking stand on your own two feet – like those in the big smoke, where countless private businesses are getting on with business without handouts and bludging. And for sums often in excess of the irrigation white elephants. Done on their own.

    Not bloody farmers though, nope. They are so special. They need old lady ratepayers to support them, plus paye wage earners on the minimum wage.

    pathetic

    and at the end of their bludging they shit up their neighbours drinking water with the waste from their business. Wish I could dump my businesses waste in the street.

    wankers

    • b waghorn 12.1

      I have a great little word for you to ad to you’re vocabulary.
      It is “”some,””! an example of an appropriate place to use it is ,
      Some farmers are bludgers.

      • weka 12.1.1

        +1 I know good farmers and we need to encourage them.

      • vto 12.1.2

        I know what you mean b waghorn, but “some” doesn’t cut it in these circumstances. It is in fact the majority of farmers in the Central Plains Water location. Or in fact anywhere that dairy can be jammed in with a bit of irrigation – out comes the hand.

        So much so that Fed Farmers and this government actively support this behaviour.

        So, nope sorry, don’t accept your assertion that “some” cuts it. It is way more. Point stands.

        • weka 12.1.2.1

          Marjority doesn’t mean all though and I think this is b’s (and my) point. I seem to remember some of the traditional sheep and beef farmers in North Canty objecting to the big irrigation schemes proposed for there.

          If we say farmers are crap, instead of greedy farmers, or some farmers, or whatever farmers, then we can’t see the good ones any more.

          Fed Farmers don’t represent farming in NZ, the represent ‘some’ farmers. Some farmers don’t belong. There is power in differentiating. Promoting hatred of farmers in general is not helpful IMO.

          • vto 12.1.2.1.1

            Noted weka. I agree an aggressive approach to farmers, or anyone in similar circumstances, is usually counter-productive.

            The issues with NZ’s primary producers and their shitting up the lands have only become apparent to the wider public, I would suggest, in the last 10-15 years.

            The time for yelling and stomping of feet is surely coming to an end yes. But the yelling and stomping of feet has been absolutely required to bring the farming lobby on board. We all know what their approach has been up until recently – complete and total rejection of the allegations and evidence.

            They had to be yelled at for a time. I agree that time is now passing.

            But it still frikkin’ irks me… the problems are acknowledged and ‘some’ are doing something about it. But the shitting up of our lands is still going on. Rivers and land are still going backwards in terms of health today.

            Bit more yelling to go methinks…

            (and look, most every sector in society gets yelled at for doing something, including the sector I work in. It is always getting yelled at. Nothing new.)

            • b waghorn 12.1.2.1.1.1

              Apparently the regig of the RMA is going to give councils the power to force farmers to fence off rivers and lakes , I hope council gets onto it as you don’t have to look far around Taumarunui to see cattle in what would be easily fenced off rivers.

              • vto

                And on a positive note there was piece in the Farming section of the Press this morning where a local dairy farmer has found native freshwater mussels in his now fenced off creek. He was very happy to acknowledge the issues and act on them.

                Maybe there is a generational aspect to it too

                • Tracey

                  My 88 year old uncle, farming int he King Country, until 2 years ago at his death was VERY environmentally active and aware. It’s not age, imo, it’s life view and ethos… his impact on other farmers in his region was immense in this regard

              • weka

                Is there a reason regional councils can’t regulate fencing water ways already?

            • weka 12.1.2.1.1.2

              By all means stomp and yell vto, I have nothing against that and I agree it’s useful when its useful. I’m saying that you should target the farmers that are the problem, not farmers as a whole. Being angry at all farmers will prevent some from changing sooner, that’s why it’s counter-productive. Anger itself is a good tool, it just needs to be used right.

              For instance, I have no problem heaping scorn on Fed Farmers, because they are a discrete group run by people that are elected, and they have constistenly favoured their own profits and wants over the good of the environment and the commons. I’m sure that not all FF members are bad farmers, but politically FF is a huge problem so any who belongs to them or supports them needs to take responsibility for that.

              But I wouldn’t condemn farmers as a whole because I know good farmers using sustainable land management, and I know conventional farmers who want to do the right thing and are trying to. Many of the latter are the ones who are caught between change and digging their heels in in the face of damning criticism.

              Another way to do this is to criticise the modality of farming while promoting the ways out. Many farmers are stuck because of the relationship between farming, farm advisors and banks. We’re going to have to come up with a plan on that, and telling them they’re shit is not going to help.

              edit, one of the most potent political acts for those that can afford to is to eat locally produced food. This gives farmers a way out of the industrial/export model.

  10. Morrissey 13

    How much money is the Flag Consideration Panel paying for Jim Mora
    to keep talking about this boring and unpopular referendum?

    The Panel, RNZ National, Wednesday 25 November 2015

    Part 1 of 2: The Pre-Panel (3:45 to 4 p.m.)
    Jim Mora, Andrew Clay, Peter Elliott, Zara Potts, Jesse Mulligan

    Three things particularly bothered me about this Pre-Panel:

    1. The fact that the first of today’s “Quick Questions” yet again concerned the flag referendum. I seriously think that the Flag Consideration Panel has paid some money to RNZ National to make sure it gets daily coverage during these discussions. Perhaps someone might like to put in an Official Information Act request.

    2. Far worse than Prof. Burrows and his ridiculous band of troughers, however, was the light-hearted and unconcerned way the Panelists discussed the banning of the burqa in the Swiss canton of Ticino.

    3. Worst of all, though, was the little item towards the end of this Pre-Panel. Zara Potts read out, in as neutral a tone as she could manage, that “a recent study out of ISRAEL shows that anxiety around threats of terrorism can actually wreak havoc with a person’s mental and physical health.” The idea of a terror study being carried out in Israel, a state which inflicts massive terror every day in the Occupied Territories and Gaza, is absurd, and an obscene distortion of the truth of the situation there. The fact that none of the other people even mentioned this absurdity tells you all you need to know about their serious they are, but also their basic sense of right and wrong.

    Here are the “highlights”…..

    JIM MORA: Coming up: How terrorism makes us sicker. On the Panel after 4 o’clock, with Andrew and Peter, two very convivial conversationalists—
    ANDREW CLAY: [snort] Ha ha!
    PETER ELLIOTT: No pressure!
    MORA: The shooting down of the Russian jet, what to do about drunks, the upcoming seasonal event—-
    ANDREW CLAY: Ha ha ha ha!
    MORA: Norwegian wood, isn’t it good, taking yoga into prisons, and is NIWA looking for oil? So a lot of things to chat about with, ahhh, Andrew and Peter after four. One Quick Question: “I understand that the winner out of the five choices in the first flag referendum must achieve 50 percent of the total vote. So it may not just be a question of saying the one with the most votes is the winner unless one is streets ahead of all the others. Are you able to confirm this please? I have this ghastly felling that the maths of this may be beyond the officials.”— Linda Wilkins of Petone.
    ANDREW CLAY: Ha ha ha ha!
    PETER ELLIOTT: Ha ha ha ha!
    MORA: I don’t know if the MATHS is beyond them Linda, it depends on whether you approve of the process. Here’s Professor Andrew Geddes on preferential voting, from Otago University’s Faculty of Law.
    ANDREW GEDDES: [He briefly explains how the process works and then finishes with….] You can rest assured the officials are more than capable of handling the maths associated with it.
    ZARA POTTS: Ha ha!
    MORA: Ha ha! Thank you, Andrew Geddes. …

    ………

    ZARA POTTS: Now while we’re talking about banning things, the Swiss canton of Ticino has just voted to ban the burqa. Anyone flouting this new law will be fined 10,000 francs, which is about 15,000 New Zealand dollars.
    MORA: This is just this canton, is it? ‘Cos I think the Swiss parliament rejected the idea of banning them.
    ZARA POTTS: Yeah it’s just one canton, sort of, ahhh, the Italian-speaking one, so it’s basically that one.

    ……

    JESSE MULLIGAN: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!
    ANDREW CLAY: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!
    PETER ELLIOTT: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!
    ZARA POTTS: Now terrorism is certainly the topic that seems to be on everybody’s mind at the moment, and with Christmas coming up it seems that Americans in particular are feeling more jittery than usual. The anxiety has been fueled in part by the travel alert that came out yesterday, in which they said that no place in the world is safe, so it’s no wonder that they’re feeling a little bit anxious. Ahh, but a recent study out of ISRAEL shows that anxiety around threats of terrorism can actually wreak havoc with a person’s mental and physical health, and in some cases, uh, terror threats have been linked to increased risk of heart attack and stroke. So it basically showed that people can actually worry themselves sick, ahhh, through anxiety, and so what do you do to kind of, ahhh, not be anxious? And so what they were saying was tune out from the news, don’t watch the news. If you’re feeling particularly jittery, don’t watch the news and particularly those repeats where they just keep showing the same pictures again and again.
    ANDREW CLAY: But that’s sound advice for news, full stop. Because most news is news, you know, due to the fact that it’s bad.
    ZARA POTTS: That’s right. But I think people get caught in a pattern where they just keep watching it, and keep rewinding and watching the same pictures again and again. And they said don’t worry about flying, because the probability of a terrorist attack directly affecting YOU is quite low.
    MORA: I notice your voice got more soothing as you went along.
    ZARA POTTS: Did it? Ha ha ha ha!
    MORA: You can worry yourself sick about ANYTHING.
    ZARA POTTS: You can. The research on this is pretty good. They say it lowers your immune system so you’re more at risk from things like colds and flu as well as things like—-
    PETER ELLIOTT: I think that’s just higher stress generally isn’t it?
    ZARA POTTS: Well, anxiety, yeah. Anxiety and stress….

    ad nauseam

    Worse—far worse—was to come, however. Professor Al Gillespie was on the way….

    End of Part 1.

  11. Colonial Viper 15

    The US consulate in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, illegally gave US visas to 10 out of the 15 Saudis involved in the 9/11 attacks. None of the Saudis qualified for the visas. CIA officers were involved.

    Springmann says that during his tenure at the US embassy in Jeddah, he was repeatedly asked by his superiors to grant illegal visas to Islamist militants transiting through Jeddah from various Muslim countries. He eventually learned that the visa bureau was heavily penetrated by CIA officers, who used their diplomatic status as cover for all manner of classified operation, including giving visas to the same terrorists who would later execute the 9/11 attacks.

    Thirteen out of the 15 Saudis among the 9/11 hijackers received US visas. Ten of them received visas from the US embassy in Jeddah. All of them were in fact unqualified, and should have been denied entry to the US.

    This article also makes clear that the rise of ISIL/Daesh and Al Qaeda in Syria was a direct consequence of a well resourced western project to remove Assad from power “at any cost.”

    By Dr Nafeez Ahmed

    View story at Medium.com

    • Ad 15.1

      Nice new investigative site there.

      Personally I’m waiting for the book that shows the complicity of the Saudi Arabian government in all the wars since the Gulf War.

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