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Open Mike 28/02/2016

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, February 28th, 2016 - 200 comments
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200 comments on “Open Mike 28/02/2016 ”

  1. Tony Veitch (not the partner-bashing 3rd rate broadcaster) 1

    I have been trying to get my head around the full implications of the TPPA in general terms.

    Reluctantly, I have heard myself beginning to sound like a conspiracy theorist!

    These are my conclusions – please shoot them down!

    As is obvious, I am not talking detail here, but broad generalisations.

    1 – that there is a conspiracy by the 1% elite to financially enslave the world. They have so many more resources than the ‘man in the street’ and a unity of purpose which is beyond the grasp of the ordinary person. The recent meeting in Davos is a case in point. What better time for the elite to meet over cups of coffee or martinis and discuss the future direction of their corporate world? That over 600 CEOs had an input into the terms of the agreement, and that it was negotiated in almost complete secrecy, are red flags that we should have heeded.


    2 – that TPPA and its brother treaties TTIP and TISA will impose a further level of governance on the countries which sign into the agreements. This will come in the form of the so-called chilling effect of potential law suits through ISDS. As one commentator said, the Legislative Council was abolished in 1951 – now it appears to be coming back as a supra-national corporate overseer. As someone else suggested, our parliament may become ‘middle-level managers,’ able to change small matters, but always deferring upwards to the corporates on major issues.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a0jCqd-MWrA (audio)
    https://tpplegal.files.wordpress.com/2015/12/tpp-treaty-process.pdf Read the key points

    3 – that TPPA is not at all about free trade but about controlled or managed trade. Certainly, many tariffs have been eliminated but the projected benefits take years to come into effect – and may be supposed to be open to ‘unforseen’ events which might nullify those benefits. In other words, the TPPA is, in terms of trade, frankly, a poor deal.

    https://tpplegal.files.wordpress.com/2015/12/tpp-economics.pdf Read the key points

    4 – that climate change hardly gets a mention. How can it be possible to sign a ‘trade’ agreement which does not attempt at least to grapple with the greatest threat facing mankind? There appears to be no money to be made in saving the planet! Corporates, with a myopic narrowness of vision on profit, can’t see the bleaker larger picture. For this reason alone TPPA should be rejected!

    https://tpplegal.files.wordpress.com/2015/12/tpp-environment.pdf Read the key points

    Finally, I find myself looking almost with longing to an event which might overtake all these negotiations and signings: the coming global financial collapse. When the house of cards that is the neoliberal economic structure finally falls, there may be an opportunity, like with FDRs New Deal in 1932, and the election of the Labour Party in 1935, to radically sweep the elite out of existence (in the nicest possible way, of course) and return this country to the people.
    The Norwegians did it! http://www.commondreams.org/views/2012/01/26/how-swedes-and-norwegians-broke-power-1-percent

    But what a hell of a thing (a world-wide depression) to wish for!

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6-67ifpdMps (30 mins – especially gloomy!)

    • saveNZ 1.1

      +1 Tony Veitch

    • pat 1.2

      would only take issue with point 4….the elites have not missed the larger bleaker picture due to a myopic focus on profit…..the elites are more aware than the general population of the impacts of climate change and seek to use that profit and position to insulate themselves at the cost of the many. In a world of diminishing resources and increasing risks their actions are Darwinian
      As the “lifeboats” become increasingly overloaded their army of useful fools will be cast overboard as required.

    • ianmac 1.3

      Wondering about those Roadshows:
      From “Its Our Future: “Warning: These Roadshows are not likely to be useful lobbying events. The government officials are going there to talk at us, not to listen. There will be opportunities to influence those who attend, particularly business people who are there, and it is important that we counter their spin. We will do a Q&A on http://www.itsourfuture.org.nz to help counter the usual government spin, and will update it after the Auckland roadshow….Protest! There will be protests at these roadshows – for information on TPPA events see FB pages for Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch, Dunedin and information on the Take Action page at It’s Our Future.”

    • Paul 1.4

      Thank you Tony V. A great contribution and worthy of a post in its own right.

      I agree with almost all your conclusions.

      Part of the story should also include the work of Naomi Klein and her book Shock Doctrine, which explains how disasters have been used to further the corporate governance of the world.


      I think the elite are aware of climate change and a part of their solution is to have lifeboats like New Zealand ready if and when things turn to custard and their Patriot Acts, TPPA, surveillance laws and other control techniques fail to manage an enraged population. It would explain why such energy has been put into making this country such a slavish follower of the neo-liberal doctrine.


      Finally, we should not be scared to use the word conspiracy. The powerful and their useful idiots use the word because they don’t want us to question the status quo.

      ‘According to John Ayoto’s 20th century words, the phrase “conspiracy theory” was originally a neutral term and only acquired a pejorative connotation in the mid 1960s, implying that the advocate of the theory has a paranoid tendency to imagine the influence of some powerful, malicious, covert agency in events. According to Florida State University professor Lance deHaven-Smith’s 2013 book Conspiracy Theory in America, the phrase “conspiracy theory” was invented in the 1960s by the CIA to discredit JFK assassination conspiracy theories. ‘


  2. corokia 2

    Comments yesterday on the post about ACT’s climate change policy reminded me of an (unpublished) letter to the editor I wrote in Sept 2014.

    “Many have commented on the vagueness of John Key and the tax cuts. National are just as vague about their climate change policy. I hadn’t heard much on National’s climate change policy, so I googled it today and got 2 hits. First was a page of press releases from Tim Groser, a link took me to a list of 36 policies, but not climate change. The second hit went to a National campaign page which said “our plan is focused on 4 key areas”. Climate change was not mentioned. There was no ‘search ’ function for me to find out more.”

    National completely ignored climate change in the 2014 election and the MSM completely ignored it too. Maybe things will be different in 2017? 2020? 2032?

    • saveNZ 2.1

      I think the Natz unofficial climate change policy is to ignore climate change. They don’t want to upset the voters (after seeing how many were at the march) but since they have signed TPPA they don’t have to worry – as Tony Veitch has concluded – “As someone else suggested, our parliament may become ‘middle-level managers,’ able to change small matters, but always deferring upwards to the corporates on major issues.” Good excuse not to do anything.

  3. chris73 3


    Interestingly I’m guessing theres more then a few lefties on here that probably agree with him…

    • Jenny Kirk 3.1

      Chris 73 is just trying to railroad the excellent discussion started by Tony V above – take no notice of him ……. nor of the silly nonsense whoever guy williams is – just so silly its not worth repeating or even reading.

      • chris73 3.1.1

        Its nothing to do with Tony V, I posted it here because its amusing but that you don’t know who Guy Williams is really does illustrate just how out of touch the left is with mainstream NZ

        • John Shears

          Guy Williams , Main Stream NZ????? Nah!!!
          He is another hard to laugh at so called NZ comedian. Why would anybody with an interest in politics be at all interested in his drivel.

          • chris73

            Well hes in a number of popular (and not so popular) shows both TV and radio so he has access to a large of number of people and he majored in political science so hes probably as qualified as most to speak on politics

            Plus the article is amusing and thats the most important thing

            • Colonial Viper

              The Labour Party was founded on 19th century concepts and ideals. Mostly around workers versus capital.

              By the ’50s and ’60s Labour had largely accomplished everything they had originally set out to do.

              Since then they have been floundering around trying to make up new goals, given up on following through their old goals to completion, and generally backing a new pro-ruling class status quo.

              What purpose is Labour fit for now? They’ve accomplished as much major change as they could by the 50s and 60s, in the 1980s they undid large parts of it, and now, who knows? Round and round in circles.

      • Paul 3.1.2

        Yes a distraction by a rwnj

      • Brigid 3.1.3

        I thought this was the Open Mike thread, where anyone can start a discussion on anything they choose. It’s actually not possible to railroad any discussion given the design of this website.
        Who Guy Williams is, is irrelevant. I don’t care if he’s the local milkman, It’s what he says that’s important and I agree with his appraisal of Labour.
        I also believe the local milkman’s opinion is as valid as anyones.

        • Paul

          And c73 comes to this site to engage in meaningful debate

        • Draco T Bastard

          I also believe the local milkman’s opinion is as valid as anyones.

          And there you’d be wrong. Opinions are only valid when they’re based upon fact. If they’re not then they’re obviously of no value.

          It’s got nothing to do with being the milkman or any body else. For that matter, NZ never used to disregard what people said based upon what they did for a living and we were better off because of it.

          • Brigid

            ” Opinions are only valid when they’re based upon fact. If they’re not then they’re obviously of no value.”
            I don’t agree. Every opinion is valid. How could it not be? Opinion is opinion, no body is claiming it’s fact.

            “It’s got nothing to do with being the milkman or any body else. For that matter, NZ never used to disregard what people said based upon what they did for a living and we were better off because of it.”
            Yes, I believe that concurs with what I implied.

            • Reddelusion

              I guess what you are trying to say is that every one is free to have and opinion which is true however some opinions are more valid than others, e.g, one mans view say based on his observation and common sense that the earth is flat verses the collective wisdom of science that The earth is not flat, similarly left wing doctrine that equal outcome is more important than equal opportunity, abstract groups are more important than individuals and that there is no such thing as individual responsibility, have nots have simply been exploited by the mythical system

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                equal outcome is more important than equal opportunity, abstract groups are more important than individuals and that there is no such thing as individual responsibility,

                [citations needed]

                False premises, false conclusions. Less charitable interpretations involve mindless parrots and malice.

            • Draco T Bastard

              Every opinion is valid. How could it not be?

              Because opinion not based upon reality such as the RWNJ delusion that the rich pay for everything is simply not valid.

              It’s really simple.

              • Rolfcopter

                Which is your opinion, therefor invalid.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  No, the facts show that the rich don’t pay for anything at all. In fact, they’re actually paid to be rich. These are the facts. You don’t like them and so cling to your delusion.

              • Stuart Munro

                I think that the opinions of imaginary persons are also invalid. Haven’t seen a milkman in decades.

              • Murray Simmonds

                Why are we debating the difference between ‘opinion’ and ‘informed opinion”?

                Might as well debate the difference between ‘tomatoes’ and ‘green tomatoes’.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  We’re not. We’re discussing if all opinions are valid or not. Obviously, uninformed opinion isn’t valid at all.

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              Every opinion is valid. How could it not be?

              People from Remuera carry a genetic marker that renders them criminal subhumans. Being resident in Remuera for more than six months infects you with the genetic marker.

              The best solution is to nuke Remuera, and hunt the survivors with dogs and petrol.

              Oh, and notional standards are a good idea.

              Positively basking in validity.

    • whateva next? 3.2

      It’s the “entertainment” section, and no I don’t agree with Guy at all, cannot imagine the “perfect Labour Leader” in any human form, but Andrew Little is an intelligent man who cares about all NZers. I believe he will offer a sustainable, fairer system of government and have no problems with what he wears or whether he has “charisma” (whatever that is these days, lord knows Key hasn’t got any, despite being told over these long years that he has.)

    • Wainwright 3.3

      c73 may be a prat, but Guy Williams is no fool. That’s burning satire and it pays to pay attention when the court jesters get fiery.

  4. Pasupial 4

    Big day for world elections today. The Iran and Ireland results are slowly coming through, but seem inconclusive and will have to wait on coalition building:




    Labour are getting punished for their support of austerity, with Sinn Féin beating them to third place and possibly part of a coalition if; a Fine Gael & Fianna Fáil coalition can’t make up the numbers with smaller parties and independents. All three of these parties have had long animosity so there may be a new election instead.

    Also there is the South Carolina Democratic primary on the 27th (our 28th). This is only the second primary (Iowa and Nevada were caucuses), and favours Clinton; possibly because the antiestablishment black vote has somewhere else to go than Sanders:


    • swordfish 4.1

      South Carolina Democratic primary

      Demographic breakdown from NBC News Exit Poll
      Clinton Support
      White…………43%………35%………Down 8 Points
      Black………….55%………61%………Up 6 Points

    • millsy 4.2

      Perhaps with the benefit of hindsight, Sanders should have sought the Green nomination for President. Trying to wrest the Democratic nomination from Clinton was always a tough ask.

      Looking at some of the stuff he did as Mayor of Burlington, VT it seems that he would have been more of a fit for the Greenies. Missed oppurtunity here.

      He may have won New Hampshire, but Alex Tsongas won it back in 1992, and we never saw or heard from him again (he actually died a few years later, but that’s beside the point..)

  5. Ant 5

    1 – that there is a conspiracy by the 1% elite to financially enslave the world.

    Why wouldn’t they? No conspiracy hypothesis required here. Greed of the super-rich and powerful has no constraint of conscience.

  6. Penny Bright 6

    Fellow Auckland Mayoral candidate ‘Independent’ Phil Goff (currently Labour MP for Mt Roskill) supports the TPPA, road tolls, Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) and the sale of Auckland Council assets – starting with the Remuera Golf Course.

    Which is why I expect to get electoral support from a number of Labour Party supporters, and the 64% of (2013) non-voters, who are unlikely, in my view, to feel inspired by these policies which are promoted by and serve the interests of the corporate 1%?

    City Vision have endorsed Phil Goff as ‘their’ Mayoral candidate.

    Phil Goff supports the TPPA, road tolls, Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) and the sale of Auckland Council assets – starting with the Remuera Golf Course.

    Does that mean City Vision now supports the TPPA, road tolls, Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) and the sale of Auckland Council assets – starting with the Remuera Golf Course?

    Perhaps ‘Mickey Savage’ could please explain?

    Kind regards,

    Penny Bright
    2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

    • Fuck off, liar. City Vision haven’t endorsed Phil Goff, as you well know. Any chance you’ll get round to telling us why you are a climate change denier? No, thought not. Transparency is for others. aye?

      Pay your rates, bludger. Then you might have some credibility.

      • Paul 6.1.1

        Courtesy please

        • te reo putake

          No courtesy for lying spammers who troll this site to boost their own egos. Penny is a bludging bullshit artist who can’t answer a straight question. As I suggested yesterday, ACT is the party most closely aligned with her lifestyle and values.

          • Sacha

            “We are pleased to hear his solid commitment to retention of our publicly owned assets” seems straightforward enough evidence that City Vision are not endorsing Goff selling assets, let alone endorsing his candidacy. No doubt our dim local candidate will try to redefine ‘retention’ next.

          • alwyn

            Somehow I get the feeling that you may not be planning to vote for Penny in the local body elections. Just an impression I am getting.

      • Sacha 6.1.2

        “City Vision haven’t endorsed Phil Goff, as you well know.”

        Yep, 3rd time Ms Bright has made that claim here in recent days.

        From their website:

        “While City Vision is yet to make a formal Mayoral endorsement decision, we believe that we could work collaboratively with Mr Goff to build a better Auckland”, says Waitematā Local Board Chair, Shale Chambers.”

        I don’t expect Penny to mend her ways but other readers deserve not to be continually lied to.

        • Karen

          +1 Sasha

        • Penny Bright


          23 November 2015

          City Vision welcomes Phil Goff’s Mayoral Announcement and Prepares for 2016 Campaign

          “Auckland needs strong, progressive leadership so we welcome Phil Goff’s announcement that he will campaign to be Auckland’s next Mayor”, says City Vision Councillor, Cathy Casey.

          “Phil has a strong track record in senior positions, and is well known for being pragmatic, open-minded, and acting with integrity.

          We are pleased to hear his solid commitment to retention of our publicly owned assets, his vision of a truly inclusive city, and his strong positions in favour of public transport and quality intensification;” says Cr Casey

          “I have worked with Phil in my capacity as ward councillor for the last two terms since amalgamation and have developed a good working relationship with him in this time as well as an appreciation for his commitment to the people of Auckland.”

          “City Vision believes that Auckland is at a cross-roads. The Supercity structure has helped to give the region a voice, and real progress on developing an integrated transport network has been made as a result.

          However, there is no denying that many Aucklanders Havel lost confidence in Council in recent years and that a fresh start is required.

          While City Vision is yet to make a formal Mayoral endorsement decision, we believe that we could work collaboratively with Mr Goff to build a better Auckland”, says Waitematā Local Board Chair, Shale Chambers.

          In my view – the above-mentioned Press Release from City Vision is an endorsement of Phil Goff’s standing as a 2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

          Not yet a ‘formal’ endorsement by City Vision?

          Then definitely, in my view, an ‘informal’ endorsement by City Vision.

          I call bullsh*t on your semantics and ask again – do City Vision now support the TPPA, road tolls, PPPs and selling off Auckland Council assets – starting with the Remuera Golf Course?

          Penny Bright
          2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

          • Sacha

            Endorse has quite a specific meaning in politics. Important that other readers get a chance to understand that, even if it’s beyond your grasp.

            • Penny Bright

              Really Sacha?

              endorse Meaning in the Cambridge English Dictionary
              dictionary.cambridge.org › dictionary

              endorse meaning, definition, what is endorse: to make a public statement of your approval or support …

              So City Vision put out a (public) Press Release supporting Phil Goff standing as a 2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

              Looks like an ‘endorsement’ to me – according to the above-mentioned Cambridge Dictionary definition?

              I respectfully request you ‘quit while you’re behind’ Sacha?

              In my view, it’s not my grasp of this issue which is questionable – it’s yours.

              Penny Bright
              2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

        • Penny Bright

          I respectfully request that you practice what you preach Sacha?

          How is that FULL City Vision Press Release about Phil Goff’s 2016 Auckland Mayoral candidacy NOT an endorsement, albeit an ‘informal’ endorsement?

          I look forward to readers of The Standard making up their own minds, after reading the full City Vision Press Release and thinking for themselves?

          Kind regards

          Penny Bright
          2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

          • Sacha

            Only one person has sought to take some likely policy positions of Goff and attach them to City Vision, by using the word ‘endorse’. It is clear that there is no arrangement on policy between those two entities.

            Take some responsibility for your attempts to mislead readers and citizens. Better still, buck up your act. Your behaviour reduces the value of public discourse.

            • Adele

              Kia ora Sacha

              While there may be a precise political definition of the term “endorsement” from a “reasonable person” test, it certainly reads as an endorsement.

              • Sacha

                Ms Bright states: “Does that mean City Vision now supports the TPPA, road tolls, Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) and the sale of Auckland Council assets”.

                City Vison states: “We are pleased to hear his solid commitment to retention of our publicly owned assets”.

                Does that sound like an endorsement of that position, let alone of candidacy? Someone is trying to make black equal white here.

                No different than opponents of intensifcation calling 3-storey buildings “high-rises”.

                • Penny Bright

                  I’m asking what I think is a VERY fair question of City Vision Sacha, and look forward to clarification from City Vision.

                  Are you a member of City Vision Sacha?

                  Just asking – nicely 🙂

                  Kind regards

                  Penny Bright
                  2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

              • Penny Bright

                Thank you Adele.

                I agree.

                Kind regards

                Penny Bright
                2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

              • weka

                While there may be a precise political definition of the term “endorsement” from a “reasonable person” test, it certainly reads as an endorsement.

                One might hope that an aspiring politician might then go, “In light of the discussion I’d like to clarify my comment. City Vision appear to support Goff on certain issues while stopping short of a formal endorsement” or such (in their own language and with attention to whether Goff is supported or the issue).

                Having a barney on social media seems counter productive.

                • Penny Bright

                  I disagree.

                  In my view this is encouraging informed debate (or trying to) on pivotal issues pertaining to the Auckland region and the 2016 Auckland Mayoralty.

                  Isn’t this the purpose of ‘Open Mike’?

                  Penny Bright
                  Auckland Mayoral candidate.

                  • Except it’s not informed debate if you start with a lie.

                    ps, Any chance you’re ready to explain why you’re a climate change denier? Y’know, for transparency’s sake?

            • Penny Bright

              Really Sacha?

              Would you care to provide the precise ‘political’ definition of the term “endorsement” upon which you are apparently relying – which differs from that which I provided by the Cambridge Dictionary?

              (Or did you just ‘make it up’?)

              Kind regards

              Penny Bright
              2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

              • Sacha

                If people in politics do not understand common terms like ‘candidate’ ‘endorsement’ or ‘policy’ then there’s little point in discussion.

                • Penny Bright

                  Thank you Sacha for confirming that you do NOT have a precise political definition of “endorsement” that differs to that which I provided from the Cambridge Dictionary.

                  Which means, in my opinion, you just ‘made it up’.

                  Which means, in my view, there is little point in discussing such terms as political “endorsement” with you, Sacha?

                  However – it won’t stop me trying 🙂

                  Kind regards

                  Penny Bright
                  2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

                  • McFlock

                    Penny, how do you reconcile your reliance on precise dictionary definitions in regards to one part of the statement, with your complete ignoring of an explicit sentence at the end of the same statement?

                    Saying a political organisation “endorses” a candidate means that the organisation supports that candidate and wants its members and supporters to vote for that candidate and donate to their campaign, and help out in other ways.

                    Liking a candidate isn’t the same as saying everyone should vote for that candidate.

                    Sure, City Vision doesn’t think Goff is the devil. But if you work hard, you might gain equal respect in their eyes, and snatch their endorsement. Their actual endorsement, not just in a wider sense of the word that you’re using to mislead people.

                    • Penny Bright

                      It’s the word ‘formal’?

                      Semantics – in my view.

                      Perhaps City Vision may change their tune and NOT end up ‘formally’ endorsing Phil Goff, given his now publicly stated position supporting the TPPA, road tolls, PPPs and the sale of Auckland Council owned assets – starting with the Remuera Golf Course?

                      We shall see.

                      However, as a proven anti-privatisation campaigner – I shall be taking no prisoners on these issues (as it were).

                      Penny Bright
                      2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

                    • McFlock

                      Not, it’s not down to a particular word.

                      It’s the coherent whole of the entire message.

                      They like Goff, they’re happy to see he’s running, but in case a better candidate comes along they’re not asking anyone to help him out, they’re not aligning their campaigning to him, and they’re not endorsing him.

                      I can’t believe that I have to explain basic language skills to someone who sees themselves as mayor of a million-citizen city.

                    • Sacha

                      The deliberate misleading is what annoys me. Bad faith corrodes civic discussions. Perhaps others are fine with that sort of behaviour – after all, look at who we elect as PM.

                  • Penny Bright

                    You keep dancing on the head of that pedantic pin Sacha….

                    Kind regards

                    Penny Bright
                    2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

                  • Penny Bright

                    Really McFlock?

                    City Vision’s ‘informal’ endorsement of Phil Goff as an Auckland Mayoral candidate doesn’t read that way to me.

                    Are you perchance McFlock, a member of City Vision?

                    Just asking – nicely 🙂

                    Kind regards

                    Penny Bright
                    2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

                    • McFlock

                      no, I’m not, you nutbar. I live in Dunedin. I do, however, use the English language regularly.

                      The point is that adding the qualification “informal” does change the message somewhat. You might think it’s semantics, but it’s not.

                      Although from your perspective, I’m not sure how many formal or informal endorsements you’re likely to receive. You can’t even reply to the correct comment.

      • One Two 6.1.3

        Attack , is not always the best form of defense

        The form of attack employed in this instance, signals a nerve has been touched

        • Paul

          Please expand….

        • Penny Bright


          I didn’t expect such offensive and defamatory attacks from a supposed ‘moderator’ of The Standard.

          NOT impressed.

          Penny Bright
          2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

      • weka 6.1.4

        trp, you could always put your mod hat on. Isn’t it in the rules that if someone makes an assertion as fact they need to back it up when asked and do so within a reasonable timeframe?

        • te reo putake

          Moderation has been loosened up, weka. All sorts of things that were not previously acceptable, such as racism and misogyny, are now fine. I’m not happy about it.

          • marty mars


            [It’s not true marty. Where it’s recognised, it’s gone…just the same less than perfect, but workable, procedure as always. Nothing at all has changed.] – Bill

            • marty mars

              thanks bill for the clarification – hope you all sort it out soon.

              • Bill

                We ‘all’ have nothing to sort out really. I mean, in a perfect world of perfect awareness and what not, they’re a number of things that would never see the light of day on ‘ts’. But peeps in’t perfect and so most peeps just do the best they can and act in good faith to keep ‘ts’ as tolerable as possible.

          • weka

            What we’re not prepared to accept are pointless personal attacks, or tone or language that has the effect of excluding others. We are intolerant of people starting or continuing flamewars where there is little discussion or debate. This includes making assertions that you are unable to substantiate with some proof (and that doesn’t mean endless links to unsubstantial authorities) or even argue when requested to do so. Such comments may be deleted without warning or one of the alternatives below may be employed. The action taken is completely up to the moderator who takes it.


            For Penny’s benefit, although no doubt it will fall on deaf ears 😉

            • Sacha

              I welcome any moderator deleting repeated unsubstantiated nonsense over a period of days.

            • Bill

              An endorsement is an endorsement. Penny didn’t distinguish between ‘formal’ and ‘informal’ (Fucked if I care about the hair splitting on that one to be honest). Sasha provided a link that’s definitely a very strong informal endorsement. And that may or may not be a prelude to a formal endorsement.

              • weka

                All that happened after the initial conversation asking for back up (and me posting the rules). I don’t have an opinion about whether Penny has provided adequate backup, I think we past peak crazy already 😉

              • Penny Bright

                EXACTLY Bill.

                “An endorsement is an endorsement.
                Penny didn’t distinguish between ‘formal’ and ‘informal’ ”

                Thanks for that.

                Kind regards

                Penny Bright
                2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

                • Except you are lying. City Vision specifically said it was not an endorsement.

                  • Penny Bright

                    In my view te reo putake – the one who is effectively lying is YOU.

                    While City Vision is yet to make a formal Mayoral endorsement decision, we believe that we could work collaboratively with Mr Goff to build a better Auckland”, says Waitematā Local Board Chair, Shale Chambers.

                    How was the City Vision (public) Press Release supporting Phil Goff as an Auckland Mayoral candidate – not an ‘endorsement’ – albeit not yet a ‘formal’ endorsement?

                    Are you not yet familiar with the following words, in my opinion, of sound political wisdom?

                    “When you’re in a hole – stop digging”?

                    Penny Bright
                    2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

          • Bill

            Neither racism nor misogyny are fine as far as moderation on ts is concerned trp – and you know this.

            Just because you wanted a person- an author you just happen to have huge issues with, condemned for allegedly racist comments, and got no bites (due, by the way, to the comments not being racist), does not translate as those with moderating rights okay-ing racism.

            • te reo putake

              You’re wrong, Bill. And we both know why you are saying this.

              • Bill

                Wrong on what front trp?

                Are you a) saying the exchange I’m alluding to was racist?

                (No-one – and I do mean no-one – who could be bothered to comment was in agreement with you on that.)

                Or are you b) saying that I’m wrong when I say that recognised instances of racism will not be endorsed/tolerated by moderators when and where they come across it?

                (As far as I’m aware, no moderator who comes across an instance of racism will defend it.)

                The only reason I commented as I did above at and as an edit in is because it’s the truth of the matter. No-one anywhere has suggested any kind of change, in either policy or practice, in relation to racist comments.

                • (As far as I’m aware, no moderator who comes across an instance of racism will defend it.)

                  Ahem. Except you, Bill.

                  • Bill

                    So, first it’s claimed that ‘ts’ will tolerate racism. Now it’s progressed to just me, as opposed to ‘ts’. Link to an example.

                    • TS actually does now tolerate bigotry. The rules haven’t changed, but the application has. You, personally, are happy to turn a blind eye as long as its a) done by someone you like and b) not about the folk north of Hadrian’s wall.

                    • Bill

                      First sentence disingenuous insofar as that type of charge could always have been leveled at ‘ts’. But that’s because it’s to do with individual mods recognising those things when they appear. And no-one has a perfect awareness of various discriminations.

                      Second part of second sentence (change in application of the rules) patently untrue.

                      Third sentence completely riddled with nonsense, bullshit and lies.

                      And no link provided to back your claim that I defend racism.

                    • Yes, Bill, right you are. You know why the link can’t be posted, but still you ask. How cute. You’ve helped lower the standard, and you know it. Give yourself a couple of slow claps.

                    • McFlock

                      are you guys arguing about a comment in open mike a week or two ago, or are you referring to something that happened in the back-end of TS?

                    • Bill

                      So the reality is that there are no instances of me defending racism.

                      And what you’d like to think I was asking for (I wasn’t) is a portion of a back-end discussion, that obviously can’t be linked to, where you made a charge of racism against another, where that claim elicited not a single comment of support or agreement from anyone.

                      That you have taken that absence of any of support for your position to somehow mean that racism is fine by those who moderate is quite astonishing (and not a little troubling imo).

                    • Yes, McFlock. And Bill knows I won’t reveal what was said on the back end discussion, hence his being precious about the link. It really is a case of a lowering of the tolerance level, dependent on who the commenter is. That’s something we get regularly accused of over at PG’s place, but I never previously thought actually happened here.

                      Anyhoo, my feelings on acceptable moderation aren’t everyone else’s. My line is that we shouldn’t leave bigotry unremarked upon, no matter who does it. That could be anything from a ‘steady on, old chap’ sort of thing to more severe restraints. But if we say nothing, particularly when it’s pointed out to us, we are tacitly approving it.

        • One Two

          Enraged verbal abuse no problem for you then, Weka ?

          • Penny Bright

            Apparently One Two.

            I wonder how long I’d last on The Standard if I verbally abused te reo putake in the same offensive and defamatory way he/she has referred to me?

            What do others on The Standard think?

            Is this acceptable to YOU?

            How would YOU like it?

            Penny Bright
            2015 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

            • chris73

              I can quite honestly say here that TRP is correct, City Vision have not officially endorsed Phil Goff and as for abuse well as someone that gets banned frequently and so forth, its their blog and you play by their rules

              If you don’t accept the rules of the blog then set your own blog up

            • marty mars

              I have abused trp with the same coarse language today – it is okay if it can be somehow relevant 🙂

          • weka

            Trp is being a macho shithead and I can’t see much useful about what he is doing. Penny is annoying at least as many commenters as trp. What does that tell you?

            • One Two

              1. There are angry and potentially violent people in positions of ‘status’ at this site, who lack self control and self awareness

              2. That verbally abusing woman is acceptable at this site

              3. That moderators and authors don’t respect eachother, openly

              4. That commenters are hypocrites, and worse

              5. That commenters cited rules regarding ‘backing up with facts’ and entered into pedantry over word definitions, suggesting warnings/bans instead of stepping up and shutting down the verbally abusive TRP

              6. That NZ has little chance of turning around because the so called ‘left’ exhibits such behaviours

              7. That jellousy and ego are too poweful for people to control for a better cause

              The list is endless….

              • Penny Bright

                I share your concerns One Two.

                Having come from the background of engineering workshop(s), I am not a delicate flower when it comes to profane language.

                However – I do draw the line to being told to f.. k off when I am trying to debate, serious issues on ‘Open Mike’ pertaining to the upcoming local government elections, particularly in Auckland, where I am a Mayoral candidate.

                I also take exception to offensive and defamatory comments made by te reo putake.

                When MY rights are under attack – I WILL stand up and fight back.

                In fact – I have defamatory proceedings on foot in the Auckland High Court, arising from comments made about me by the CEO of Auckland Council.

                Copping ad hominem attacks, in my view, are usually a sign that you have ‘hit a nerve’ to which the other party has no valid reply (on the issue).

                Don’t worry – I know how to defend myself (have plenty of practice on Kiwiblog 🙂

                Penny Bright
                2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

              • weka

                Those things were already in your head by the sounds of it, not so much to do with trp being a shit and Penny annoying the fuck out of a bunch of people.

                5. That commenters cited rules regarding ‘backing up with facts’ and entered into pedantry over word definitions, suggesting warnings/bans instead of stepping up and shutting down the verbally abusive TRP

                Commenter, single. I can’t shut trp down, he’s an author. I could have said something to him about his behaviour, but I’m sick of being the behaviour police around here. I am curious though, why didn’t you give him a telling off?

                • One Two

                  Plural. You were not alone.

                  Of course you can shut him down, or try to. You’re clearly a long time contributer to this site, and undoubtedly have the respect of authors , moderators and commenters.

                  If you have reached the stage of being worn down being the behaviour police, and those who should be performing that role, don’t, won’t or in this instance, are the abusers…..

                  Then perhaps it’s time to move in a different direction before you lose reapect for yourself


                  • weka

                    I’m ok with who I am thanks.

                    “Of course you can shut him down, or try to.”

                    I suggest you go look at what happend to marty today in arguing with trp and see what happens.

                    You didn’t answer my question. Why didn’t you take on trp over this behaviour?

      • Penny Bright 6.1.5

        te reo putake 6.1
        28 February 2016 at 10:23 am
        Fuck off, liar. City Vision haven’t endorsed Phil Goff, as you well know. Any chance you’ll get round to telling us why you are a climate change denier? No, thought not. Transparency is for others. aye?

        Pay your rates, bludger. Then you might have some credibility.

        Aren’t you supposed to be a ‘moderator’ te reo putake?

        Your comment is both offensive and defamatory.

        Starting with withdrawing and apologising for making that comment?

        I also respectfully suggest that you ‘pull your head in’ and ‘mind your manners’?

        As a ‘moderator’ – lead from the front and practice what you preach – sort of thing?

        Penny Bright
        2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

        • te reo putake

          Fuck off liar. If you want to prove me wrong, post the link to City Vision’s endorsement of Phil Goff. You can’t, because you are lying. You talk a lot about transparency, but you refuse to be open and honest with the voters of Auckland or the readers of the Standard. You’re a spamming, trolling, bludgeing hypocrite.

          Feel free to sue me if any of that is incorrect.

          • Penny Bright

            Ok te reo putake.

            I gave you, as a supposed ‘moderator’ of The Standard an opportunity to withdraw your offensive and defamatory comment.

            You didn’t.

            Now I am about to test the complaints process of The Standard.

            (FYI – similar offensive and defamatory comments made about me on Kiwiblog have been ‘sanctioned’ by strikes and stand downs by host David Farrar.)

            And YOU te reo putake – are supposed to be a ‘moderator’??

            Penny Bright
            2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

            • Bill

              trp is a author but isn’t, as far as I’m aware, a moderator.

              • Actually, I do have the ability to moderate, Bill, but of late, I’ve kept it to a bare minimum.

                • Penny Bright

                  Yes te reo putake – a number of your comments pertaining to me, today, have been anything but ‘moderate’, in my opinion.

                  In fact I have found a number of them to be both offensive and defamatory.

                  BTW – how on earth can anyone ‘troll’ on ‘Open Mike’?

                  Don’t you know what ‘troll’ means, pertaining to commenting on a blog?

                  Perhaps you shouldn’t use words you don’t know the meaning of?

                  (Meant of course in a caring way 😉

                  Kind regards

                  Penny Bright
                  2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

                  • Fuck off, liar. You’re a spam spewing, cut and paste troll, who hasn’t got enough integrity to address reasonable questions. You’re a bullshitter, a denier and an evader of the awkward truth. A person who wants to tell others what to do, while doing the opposite. Someone who thinks it’s everybody else’s burden to pay for the things we share.

                    Come to think of it, you might have what it takes to be mayor after all.

                  • what are the defamatory ones?

                    edit just saw trp’s latest – must be something in there?

          • Penny Bright

            Are you a member of City Vision perchance te reo putake?

            Just asking – nicely 🙂

            Kind regards

            Penny Bright
            2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

  7. Descendant Of Sssmith 7

    It’s how the vulgar wealthy / corporates / 1% have always operated.

    History tells us that.

    In more recent times the quote by Warren Buffet

    “There’s class warfare, all right, but it’s my class, the rich class, that’s making war, and we’re winning.”

    or the Citibank plutonomy documents outline this perfectly.


    Go back further and “War is a racket” outlines the rort of the rich.


    It’s how they do business and if they can shape the world in their own image they will.

    Someone once here posted the response of the steam companies to the development of electricity and how they legislated to take their power (no pun intended at all) back.

    What changed at some point was not the behaviour of the rich and powerful. This continues unabated. What changed was the working class wresting some power off them through labour rights and re-distribution.

    Change won’t happen until those things are wrested back again.

    Right now no-one is wresting those back in NZ.

    Even a simple concept like an 8 hour working day, 40 hour working week is anathema to every single political party in NZ. Something we used to lead the world in and were very proud of.

    It’s not the right that have changed and need changing – it’s the cowed left.

    • Paul 7.1


    • pat 7.2

      “It’s not the right that have changed and need changing – it’s the cowed left.”

      would suggest it is the deceived centre that needs “changing”….in the absence of societal change.

      • Descendant Of Sssmith 7.2.1

        “deceived centre” – nah they are not deceived at all.

        They vote for their interests.

        They know well what they are doing.

        • pat

          some yes….but “the centre” is a very broad church, and as we know from polling it only requires a small portion of that congregation to shift to have the desired effect

          • Descendant Of Sssmith

            It’s the left however that determine left policies. You can’t vote for left policies – such as an 8 hour working day – if those policies no longer exist within political parties.

            You can’t strike if there’s no left policies enabling this. At present you can only strike at the expiry of a contract. Who is looking at changing this – no-one.

            Unions are cowed and buy into things such as three year contracts when a one year contract could at least give them the power to strike every year. Three year contracts in a fast changing world just give away what little power unions have left.

            The right and centre voters are summed up in this quote.

            “The modern conservative is engaged in one of man’s oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness.” J.K. Galbraith

            • Paul

              There are left wing policies in New Zealand.
              They are not to be found in the Labour Party though.

            • pat

              Sabine’s post re the flag is as pertinent here as it is there…

              The Butcher’s Apron or the Tea Towel

              Of the participating public in General elections I would suggest the mobile ” centre” is as large as 40%….some more willing to be deceived than others.

              The majority on these blogs are not members of this group.

              • Descendant Of Sssmith

                Nah that’s disingenuous.

                It implies that people make a conscious decision not to vote because of one policy or other as opposed to say “Fuck it can’t be bothered cause they’re all the same anyway”.

                I remember talking to one old lady on the bus who voted National. She did this because her (now long deceased husband) had told her to always vote National. Doing otherwise would let him down.

                It’s much more complicated than the conscious decision making process because people are much more complicated than that and emotion will always play a part in decision making.

                Part of the problem is seeing the appeal of the centre voters as the way to win elections.

                On re-think was a good example this morning of how taking a principled and what would have been considered a far from centre position enabled and energised people and led to significant change.

                For those who didn’t see this this was the land march.

                At the end of the day left wing policies need to have some passion and resonance – an emotional as well as a rational being to attract voters.

                Chasing the center voters as a tactic to win just comes across as cynical.

                The logic might appeal to some rational sense but it’s clearly not enough.

                It was also rational for Labour and Greens to not compete against each other in some seats (and lets face both parties had and have infinitely more control over that than the voters) and win the last election but the emotional attachment Labour have to themselves meant that did not happen.

                It was much more rational if Labour wanted to help people at the bottom to put the $20-00 per week back on benefits before putting it back on NZS but they chose not to do this because of the emotional value they would get out of voting superannuitants.

                Those on benefits continue to be poor and getting poorer.

                • pat

                  you frame it incorrectly….it is not a case of “chasing ” the widely disparaged centre voter…it is convincing that relatively small proportion of them that their interests are better served by the alternative……and this has to be achieved in an environment of general disinterest and “once over lightly”….(your description of the National voter has its mirror image within Labour and these are not your target audience.)….once successful with this , only then can you hope to address the issues you outline.

                  • Descendant Of Sssmith

                    So forget about the poorest and the most marganalised UNTIL you have power.

                    Tried that with Helen Clark’s 9 years of Labour government.

                    As noted they increased super but not benefits, they put in draconian measures against beneficiaries, they barely touched labour laws.

                    How’d that approach work out for those not voting.

                    9 years of pale blue.

                    Yeah there’s an argument that a Labour government is a better alternative to National but left it’s not.

                    • sabine

                      the left loosely defined in NZ

                      the Labour Party
                      the Green Party

                      the right loosely defined in NZ
                      The National Party
                      the conservatives
                      the Maori Party

                      un-affiliated, or turn coats, or opportunists
                      Peter Fucken Dunne Party
                      Maori Party (yes i put them in two categories, as they admit to be working with everyone – all of he above just to get to parliament)

                      and i want people to vote, irrespective of whom they vote, i want them to vote. People have fought very hard to give us the rights we have today, and hardest of all the was right to vote especially for women.
                      Whom they vote for, that is not my choice to make, they will decide forthemselves once they are in the polling booth. But I want them to go there, and Just do it! tis the only point i am trying to make.

                    • pat

                      definitely do not forget about the most marginalised…..it is consideration of exactly that that requires a compromise to enable a less bad option…..and whether it is left enough or not is not the point, at least it is not blatantly corrupt.

                • greywarshark

                  @descendant of ssmith
                  I think you are making good points. It occurs to me that the centre voters are the ones without much passion. Easy peasy. they say they are looking for stability but really not too bothered providing they feel they are doing okay.

                  They are not driven by ideals of fairness and social mobility as on the left or on the RW side. an aggrieved defence against demands that others should have opportunities to rise and sit alongside these godlike achievers. (Refer to the Four Yorkshireman, monty python, ‘Aye, I had it hard etc.).

    • Draco T Bastard 7.3

      Change won’t happen until those things are wrested back again.

      Right now no-one is wresting those back in NZ.


      Every single political party in NZ is all about keeping things the way they are rather than changing them as needed.

      • pat 7.3.1

        by and large thats true, and I agree there needs to be wholesale change…BUT, we need to work with whats available until such time as that change gathers momentum.
        And getting rid of the current lot is becoming increasingly important as another term of this BS will take us further down the road of no return

      • millsy 7.3.2

        “Every single political party in NZ is all about keeping things the way they are rather than changing them as needed.”

        Except when rich people want more priviliges.

  8. Descendant Of Sssmith 8

    See how profit is a weight around the shoulders of infrastructure companies.


    Two solutions:

    1. Stop distributing profit to shareholders while you develop what you need to
    2. Make the developers and builders of new homes in new subdivisions pay the additional costs needed.

    The private sector is pretty good at telling us what things cost when they want to charge us long term existing users – work out the cost and charge the new users.

    $5,000 per house seems small change if you’re paying over a million dollars for each house.

  9. Morrissey 9

    Wallace Chapman: “I won’t read any racist
    messages on air. Here’s an anti-Maori one I’ve chosen.”

    Sunday Morning, RNZ National, 28 February 2016

    If you listened to Mediawatch this morning, you would have heard a rather fraught debate between Willie Jackson and RNZ Head of Content Carol Hirschfeld about RNZ’s commitment, or lack of commitment, to Maori language and Maori culture.

    After the 10 o’clock news, host Wallace Chapman said: “Lots of feedback about the Mediawatch programme this morning. But I have to say that a lot of the comments are RACIST. So I won’t be reading them out. Still, thanks for your comments, and keep them coming.

    Less than an hour later, just before 11 o’clock, Chapman broke his pledge not to read out any racist statements. No doubt Chapman had received many intelligent and thoughtful responses about that debate, but he chose to read one that might have been sent in by his namesake Kyle Chapman, or by someone equally vile like Larry “Lackwit” Williams or David Round or Stephen Franks…

    WALLACE CHAPMAN: There has been a LOT of feedback about the Mediawatch programme this morning. I’ll just read this one: “They’ve got their own TV station, for heaven’s sake.”

    Could they coax Chris Laidlaw out of retirement?

    More on Wallace Chapman…

    Open mike 21/12/2014

    • Brigid 9.1

      Yes please. Bring back Chris Laidlaw. While I believe Wallace Chapman is probably a quite nice chap he just doesn’t seem to know how to conduct an intelligent interview.

  10. Penny Bright 10

    How many thousands are lining up to see Hillary Clinton?

    Thousands line up to see Bernie Sanders in Austin.


    Democratic Presidential candidate Senator Bernie Sanders campaigns at the Circuit of the Americans in southeast Austin on Saturday, February 27.

    Austin (KXAN) — Thousands lined up to see Sen. Bernie Sanders at Circuit of Americas Saturday morning, despite long security lines.

    Sanders visited Austin to kick off his “Future to Believe in Austin Rally.” He took the stage just after noon.

    At the beginning of his speech, Sanders pointed out Texas will vote for the most delegates of any state on Super Tuesday, with 222 pledged delegates of the 4,051 needed to win the nomination.

    Sanders also said the nation’s minimum wage should be raised to $15 an hour, expand benefits to retired Americans, end homelessness among veterans and demand equal pay for women.

    He asked the Austin crowd how many had student debt, which led to a lot of hands being raised.
    “Unbelievable!” Sanders said of the Austin crowd. “This is an epidemic of debt.”

    While talking about racial inequality, Sanders promised major reforms while attacking Republican frontrunner Donald Trump.

    “We are not going to allow the Trumps of the world to divide us up,” Sanders said, which led to cheers. “And that we are going to bring major reforms to a broken, very broken, criminal justice system.”

    Penny Bright
    2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

  11. Morrissey 11

    Mugabe’s lavish 92nd birthday party angers critics


  12. Morrissey 12

    No wonder Britain’s scofflaw regime want to close down this television station

    About 15 minutes into this, you’ll see an unintentionally hilarious contribution by the hapless son of that old zombie Neil Kinnock….

  13. tinfoilhat 13

    What an ugly thread.

  14. Mike C 14

    Testes Testes Testes …

    Just seeing if I am able to write comments in here yet … and how long it takes for my comment to appear in the Standard 🙂

    [lprent: You just have to get a first comment past a moderator. All we look for is that your comment has something vaguely to do with the post (not a criteria on OpenMike) and the conversation that you join, and doesn’t look like it was written by a idiot trying to learn how to wank online (and failing). That is because we’re interested in people who can express an opinion and then be able to argue for it with a degree of intelligence. This appears to be something that isn’t common amongst the neolithic self pleasuring trolls.

    If it’d been my pass through moderating, this comment would probably not have gotten through. I detest people who can only grunt commentary on what they are manipulating. ]

  15. Poission 15


    “The old regimes of ‘Bailoutistan’ that were put in place by the troika, or by their acceptance of the troika programmes, have collapsed in every country where we had an election during the last twelve months,


  16. Penny Bright 16

    So Pete George – in my opinion – is misrepresenting what I have said on his blog?

    It will be interesting to see if he publishes my reply ..

    Penny Bright

    2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

    (Consistent and persistent in her opposition to the TPPA, road tolls, privatisation via Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) and sales of Auckland Council assets (including the Remuera Golf Club).

  17. The Chairman 17

    About 300 foreigners a month are being issued IRD numbers for the purpose of buying or selling property in NZ.


  18. You fucken prick trp or voice of reason for deleting my comment which WASN’T on the subthread you have decided to stop because your idiot mind couldn’t take it – what a fucken bogus weakling you are

  19. weka 19

    So you can’t say what the problem is? Goodo. This discussion is ended. Further comments on this sub-thread go straight to trash.

    The Butcher’s Apron or the Tea Towel

    No, trp, I can most definitely say what the problem is. Anyone here, including yourself, knows that I am not shy about explaining myself or unable to. In this instance I choose not to, because you have spent a day not hearing what has been said to you.

  20. happynz 20

    Urgh…just noticed the “thumbs up” doo-dad. “Thumbs down” for the “thumbs up”.

    +1s are okay though.

  21. greywarshark 21

    I think I like the likes. Great, see how they go.

  22. Mike C 23


    Oh dear … my last two comments would have failed on all counts then. LOL 🙂

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