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Open mike 28/05/2016

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, May 28th, 2016 - 132 comments
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132 comments on “Open mike 28/05/2016 ”

  1. Paul 1

    Another day in John Key’s neo-liberal nightmare.
    We have become a cruel, ugly and selfish nation under his wretched leadership.

    ‘Sallies helping people pay for rental bonds
    The Salvation Army has dipped into its reserves to help people who were turned down by Work and Income pay for rental housing bonds.
    Salvation Army policy analyst Alan Johnson said the people were all referred by Work and Income offices.
    “Effectively they’ve just turned up and said Work and Income told us to come down here.”
    “These are people who are on a welfare benefit, who would normally have received that sort of assistance from Work and Income.”‘


    • Reddelusion 1.1

      You and your Neo liberal nightmare Paul, your posting are getting quite delusional and repetitive, can I suggest you type happy news into google it may change your perception and quality of your links (that is if you. must satisfy your link addiction) I drove across akl today (football) and talked to a cross section of people, no one interestingly brought up the Neo liberal nightmare, nor did I see any evidence of such, strange that as based on your ramblings it is so pervasive Possibly it’s just in your head and on the Internet, so a virtual neoliberal nightmare, thus easily solved, wake up and set your google default search to happy news😀

      • Whateva Next 1.1.1

        and if you get sick, and/or old, or god forbid find yourself without savings, and spare cash…….some of these things money will not prevent anyway, so think on mate

      • Doogs 1.1.2

        Oh for chrissake! You really should be called blue delusion or better still brown delusion from all that nose-diving.

        Either you are just pushing hard because you hate the pinkos, or you are completely out of touch with the reality of many of our citizens today.

        The right of centre movement IS predicated on support for the business community in the wonky belief that trickle down will happen. It won’t, it doesn’t, it never has and it never will. That is neo-liberalism. It’s there, it’s happening, it’s a reality and it prevents those who can from doing the right thing for the less fortunate among us.

        If you can do no better than latch on to someone’s comment and squirt back a muddled, slightly cheeky piece trying to sound as if you know better than anyone, then . . . . . . It’s this lofty condescending attitude about natzi supporters that shits me right off.

      • ropata 1.1.3

        you didn’t see anyone with problems as you sailed past in your SUV? just like John Key rubbing shoulders with average Kiwis in the Koru Club…

        turning a blind eye to the suffering of your neighbours, good for you mate
        *slow clap*

        • ropata

          yep … Auckland’s shame is known to the world, but ignored by the people who live here.

          Darryl Evans, CEO of Mangere Budgeting in South Auckland, says on some roads in South Auckland every second house has additional accommodation erected – be it an occupied garage, a portable cabin with a chemical toilet, or tents pitched on the front and back lawn.

          “Up until a few years ago, a family member might let you camp in the garage at no cost, as a temporary set-up,” said Evans.

          “But now landlords have cottoned on to how desperate people are, and are renting out garages or Portakabins for hundreds of dollars. Our food bank – every food bank in Auckland – is under the most pressure its ever been.”

      • Reddelusion 1.1.5

        If those things happen I hope I would take a stoic and epicurean view towards what are the vaguiries of life. I would also do as much as I can to avoid such mishaps by educating myself, work hard, drink in moderation, don’t have kids I can’t afford, move if I have to, don’t smoke, exercise, try to avoid divorce, have appropriate insurance, and try not to be a burden on others all let other be a burden on me, but if all else fails be pretty glad I live in nz, a country where nearly 60 billion is spent on education, health, pensions etc and nearly 5 month of your income in wages and salaries is paid to the state to fund as such

        • Reddelusion

          Oh one other avoid well meaning but deluded socialist who want to make you a victim and are only interested in you as a class not as an individual

          • Once was Tim

            Oh hark at ye Red. I’m in total awe of you. You’re just the cat’s whisker.
            Is there a fast track route I can take to become just like you?

            • Wensleydale

              I hear the first step is to take your moral compass and smash it into a hundred pieces with a claw hammer. Everything just falls into place after that.

          • Doogs

            RD – I see that your excellent education ran to such important skills as language structure and spelling. Well done. Forever sounding aloof and superior to all around you.

          • greywarshark

            I don’t know what individual you are using as your example? It can’t be you that people are not interested in. TS anyway, can’t leave you alone and individuals here always respond to your cries for individual attention and your jibes, and other malfunctions resulting from your depressed and tortured mind.

        • Whateva next?

          And under Labour that would do the trick, currently people are playing a game of monopoly, except that one or two start with $1000,000 and rush around putting hotels on all the streets, whilst the other players start with a hundred and don’t have a shitshow chance of all the things you so “proudly” hope you would do…get it?

    • Paul 1.2

      Another day in John Key’s neo-liberal nightmare.
      We have become a cruel, ugly and selfish nation under his wretched leadership.

      ‘Dunedin’s housing crisis: Sex for a place to sleep
      Dunedin’s “dire” housing situation is forcing some at-risk youth to engage in prostitution to get a place to sleep, or to sleep rough in cars, a Methodist Mission survey has revealed.
      Eleven of the 300 at-risk youth (aged between 16 and 20) who responded to the survey said they had engaged in prostitution for the “primary purpose of accommodation”.’


      • Sabine 1.2.1

        this has happened in AKL for sometimes.

        Survival Sex. Very common among the homeless youth, and done by both genders.

    • greywarshark 1.3

      Refusing rental housing bonds all helps to limit expenditure on the people forced to the fringes, and accumulates so that the papers can say in BIG letters that there is a surplus. No-one but a sourpuss would want to downplay Gnats’ surplus.

      What a lovely surplus you have Mr Key. Yes it is and I am very comfortable with that. It shows what excellent managers we Nats are. And of course we still have our welfare state not like other western countries. It is just leaner and more efficient now than under Labour. People sleeping in cars? More efficient. If they can afford cars I am sure they have an income that they have whittled away on foolish spending.

  2. North 2

    English on The Nation……..for those not up with the play……..the 8 years long National Party government has no responsibility, none at all, for the housing crisis. Indeed, still, is there a crisis at all ?

    Would you bring up your kids with ‘responsibility’ models like English ? Or Mr ‘Selfie’ Key ?


  3. mauī 3

    This kinda makes it real, WINZ emergency housing at $1330 a week.

    • b waghorn 3.1

      More proof we have an Incompatant government .

    • North 3.2

      $190/night ??? Presumably WINZ didn’t engage a minute trying to hack out a decent deal ?

      • Gangnam Style 3.2.1

        Apparently it’s to protect the reputation of the motel, like the woman in charge of running the Otago Hospital gets an extra payment to protect her reputation, so they get extra payment.

        • North

          So the owner of the motel units that look like they’re worth $90/night tops would say no to long term occupation at $120/night ? ‘Reputation’ be damned.

          • Graeme

            Another explanation is that WINZ are “clipping the ticket” or charging through the costs of facilitating the accomodation, and doing it by way of a loan to the “client”. One way of extending the budget.

            I’d love to see the statement / invoice that covers the services provided for the loan. I know it’s cynical to think like this, but when WINZ are behaving like loan sharks by making emergency housing a loan you start to expect that the rest of the deal follows a similar moral definition.

            • greywarshark

              I bet you are right on that. WINZ order. Punish the bannies (short form of portmanteau of bennies and bastards.) Also indicates trend direction.

              • Graeme

                I sort of wish I hadn’t thought that now. I’ve spent the last two hours thinking we’ll see Payday Loans and the like called Social Service Providers, and lined up for a “Service Delivery Contract” by some fool nat in the near future.

                Fortunately it’s already a cold grey day.

        • weka

          “Apparently it’s to protect the reputation of the motel, like the woman in charge of running the Otago Hospital gets an extra payment to protect her reputation, so they get extra payment.”

          What do you mean?

          • Gangnam Style

            I heard it on the radio a few weeks back, RNZ, will try & search later, but Motels apparently worried about housing the ‘unhousable’ & people not wanting to stay at their motels because of that. SO scaring their customers with all the beneficiaries staying there.

            • Gangnam Style

              While searching found this from Feb http://www.odt.co.nz/news/politics/373434/homeless-motels-extra-money-not-spent

              “The paper identified weaknesses within the current funding arrangements, including a lack of accountability for providers and no clear standards, insufficient funding, gaps in provision, and a growing need for services to address homelessness. “

              • Gangnam Style

                & this is interesting too https://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2016/05/16/number-homeless-families-state-funded-motels-drops-under-baker/Tt9JaInTwwHhqa5HsjubxO/story.html

                “The number of homeless families living in hotels and motels at state expense — the last resort for Massachusetts’ most vulnerable residents — has dropped dramatically since Governor Charlie Baker took office promising to end the practice. “

              • weka

                So it’s been going on all year :-/

                I’m wondering if the govt could buy houses on the market, rent them to families in a rent to buy scheme. They’re going to be paying accommodation supplement to private landlords anyway, why not to banks instead and get people set up for life?

                • Lanthanide

                  “why not to banks instead and get people set up for life?”

                  So you’re suggesting a class of people for whom the government will step in and subsidize a house for, and people who don’t fall into this class will have to pay for their own house entirely out of their own pockets?

                  Yeah, don’t see that going down well with ‘middle New Zealand’.

                  • weka

                    As opposed to a class of people who are forced to live in cars? Sure, I can see why middle NZ would prefer that over those people being helped. Because we’re now a selfish fuck country.

                    But actually what I am suggesting isn’t going to hurt middle NZ, it would help. Like I said, they’re already going to be paying accommodation supplement to landlords, why not the banks instead? Or would middle NZ prefer to support landlords rather than young families?

                    The govt could front up with the deposit, remain the legal owner until such time as the resident can take over, and then get the deposit back if they ever sell. I’m just thinking out loud, I don’t know if the logistics work, but I can’t see the moral problem with it.

                    • Lanthanide

                      Sure, sounds fine, if the government give this same opportunity to anyone who wants it. But they won’t be able to, because that will cost too much.

                    • weka

                      But we give opportunities to some people and not others all the time.

            • weka

              Fuck. So the motel owners extorted a higher rate from WINZ.

      • The Chairman 3.2.2

        “Presumably WINZ didn’t engage a minute trying to hack out a decent deal ?”

        Or even bothered to look.


        • weka

          I agree it should be possible to find better accommodation for less money, but have a look at the reviews on that site. I’m not sure how many are appropriate for a family with kids.

          • The Chairman

            A number are far better and cheaper than that dive Campbell highlighted.

            • weka

              I’m sure there are. But did you look at the reviews and see which ones were suitable for families with babies and children?

              • Sabine

                as an ex homeless person i can state that anything is better then the street.

                reviews are also quite depended on the experience a person had at an establishment.

                I am not saying that WINZ should put women and children up in a hotel that rents rooms by the 30 minutes, but that most hotels/motels/hostels in Akl and elsewhere would be quite appropriate for housing homeless people under the banner ‘ of emergency housing’.

                What gets me is that obviously $ 190 is a rate that WINZ would have ‘negotiated’ with private providers. Is that the best that they could have negotiated, or was that the maximum these providers can tax WINZ for a night?

                • weka

                  I’m wondering if there is a rort going on with that rate.

                  The comparison wasn’t with being on the street, it was was with being in the $190 unit. I thought the comments were useful. Single room with only a bed, nothing else. Very noisy. Suitable for a young drunk man. Not great for kids. Those were the comments. I find it hard to believe that Winz can’t find cheaper emergency accommodation than that unit but a quick tourist search isn’t a solution either. Auckland people might be able to comment on whether finding something for the families in that video for less than $190 is realistic.

                  I was thinking things like Book a Bach would be cheaper if they can negotiate a weekly rate but Airbnb has probably pushed the rates up, and all that phoning round and negotiating would be too much work for Winz, hence they’ve gone for the option that’s easiest for them, it’s not costing them after all.

                  • Sabine

                    book a batch are mostly private and fully furnished.

                    i think with emergency housing it is actually easier if they are sparsly furnished as that would reduce the risk to the person staying the night in ‘breaking’ some old piece of crap that they then have to re-fund for full price and some.

                    But even then, a simple motel accomodation with a TV, shower, etc would be good for emergency accom.

                    Longer term might need to be better organised, i agree, but 190$ to get a person of the street per night when that person has no money is ludicrous. I guess even the housed person would say that.

                    And those room/trailer things with no insulation/water etc should not cost more then 50 a night as all you can do in them is sleep.

                    • weka

                      Upthread, it sounds like the rate had been hiked because it was beneficiaries staying and scaring away other customers 🙄

                      Open mike 28/05/2016

                      I also get the impression that we’re talking about weeks, not just a night or two, so the accommodation really needs to have cooking facilities and a decent bathroom and living for a family, esp at this time of year.

                  • Sabine

                    should have cooking facilities, but that article about the young women in the South Island, was simply a cabin on camp grounds, no water, no toilet facilities. Just one of these ‘rent a room’ things. She owes now 2 grand + for a two week stay.

              • The Chairman

                Are you implying the one highlighted by Campbell was suitable?

                As stated above, a number are far better and cheaper than that dive Campbell highlighted.

                As the money is expected to be repaid, WINZ should be doing their best to ensure their clients aren’t laden with unnecessary debt.

                Placing them in such an overpriced dive is unacceptable.

    • weka 3.3

      You are right mauī, it does make it real. I am ashamed to be a NZer. There is something very very wrong with that situation, and this country has let that happen.

      • Tony Veitch (not the partner-bashing 3rd rate broadcaster) 3.3.1

        North 3.2

        Perhaps this is just another manifestation of corporate welfare – like the rent supplement.

  4. dukeofurl 4

    Some things out of a spin doctors mouth- Alistair Campbell

    “In his first meeting, he always gave the organisation’s top people a plain postcard, and asked them to write what their organisation’s objective was, and what strategy was being deployed to meet it.

    “Nine times out of 10, I gather in a stack of different objectives, strategies which are tactics, or strategies which are objectives,” Campbell said.

    “”I say to them, you don’t have a spin problem, you have a reality problem”

    We have seen national all over the place this week, they should be all saying the same things or shutting up, but no it was talking over the top , denying things they had said.

    Guess what Duncan Garner then comes out, as if on cue, labour has a Little problem. There is enough wreckage amoung national for 10 articles but he runs with nationals counter attack on Little, as though he thought it all up himself!

  5. Jo 5

    A few months ago, there was a discussion over whether there would be a jump in the number of Dairy Farm sales. I have lived and worked on a farm all my life (actually my father’s family have only ever farmed, right back to the Scottish Crofts) and I said that in my experience farm sales would fall, people just hunker down and Banks have a vested interest in not pushing wholesale forced sales. Most people were sceptical on my take and the Labour party leaders were certain that sales would sky rocket.

    The figures are out, farm sales are half what they were last year. It is important to also note, that this is the only practical time to sell a Dairy farm. Why did the media and Labour get it so wrong; they simply didn’t listen or maybe even take the time to talk to people who live and work in the rural sector.

    I also suggested the next big thing in agriculture was going to be Bees and sure enough the demand for land for hives is the hot item!


    • Bill 5.1

      Not a dairy farmer, but can imagine I’d try to ride a trough out. And if I was interested in being a dairy farmer I certainly wouldn’t be buying in at the moment. But next year, or maybe even the year after, if prices keep bumbling along, then I might be forced to bail. And on the other side, I still wouldn’t be buying.

      The buyers will be companies, not individuals, and they’ll be getting land and operations at bargain basement prices – economy’s of scale might mean they won’t need the same powder prices to be viable.

      That’s my call anyway.

      • Jo 5.1.1

        Well the sales around here have all been to individuals, the so called big companies are not buying much as their shareholders aren’t too keen! Prices are not bargain basement, due to the low number on offer…..supply and demand fix the price.

    • Ad 5.2

      Our old family farm inland from Whangarei Harbour has reverted to Ti Tree and the apiarists and exporters can’t get enough. But still run some drystock.

  6. Sabine 6

    the free market work so well, and if we can’t sell our crap we break it on purpose and send it to the landfill. Cause clearly why not.


  7. Glenn 7

    John A Lee on State houses 1978


    “We only want a moment of prosperity again and you’d find that houses were in absolute, critical short supply. Yes, anyhow, what more healthy employment than building good homes? What spreads money better down the main street? We’re finding a lot of work for people today, or alleged work – they’d be a damn sight better building homes.”

  8. greywarshark 8

    police dog handler was attacked during what police say was a routine stop of a car in South Auckland.
    The officer stopped the vehicle on Bairds Road, Otahuhu, about 4am.

    As he spoke to the driver, two men got out of the car and assaulted him, knocking him unconscious.
    Police said a truck driver scared off the attackers, and a passing ambulance crew treated the officer and took him to hospital. His condition is described as moderate.

    Heard on the radio this morning.

    Naive question. Why was there a routine stop of a car in South Auckland at 4 a.m.?
    Was there an operation to catch an important criminal? Or to stop a known planned crime from occurring?

    Or was this some police interference in the doings of citizens. Part of the in your face attitude that we see so much of with police waiting outside premises where alcohol is being served so they can catch someone over limit? It results in dislike, even hate of the police. I certainly dislike being stopped and breathlysed as I drive my car carrying out my normal life.

    he campaigns to catch those over the limit are preventative and supposed to scare people into better drinking habits. They must also be very expensive and cost gold while they search for their gold of illegal levels amongst the mass of citizens they stop and demand tests from.

    I would like policing to go back to reacting to crime, keeping an eye out for likely acts of crime with a view to preventing them, but not spending money on trying to prevent crime which often results in real events ending in disaster. It is likely these would never have happened if the police had not set up traps and interference with freedom of movement by the public. Their behaviour is ineffective and harrasses people.

    I would like to see police have a goal base of working with disadvantaged youth and helping community groups provide guidance and personal control, skills of any kind to promote attitudes of self-worth with young people. This would be better than to spend taxpayer funds running expensive campaigns of surveillance that result in less funds being available for other policing, not involving roads and policing private vehicles.

    • Gabby 8.1

      Well it might be a matter of routine to stop erratically driven cars not showing all the required lights?

    • Mr Scooter 8.2

      I thought the police were still doing night patrols with 2 officers in a car. In 1977, a traffic officer, Barry Gibson, was beaten to death in New Plymouth while doing a stop in the middle of the night. The police union strongly pushed for, and were successful in making it mandatory for all patrols at night to be two officers a car. When did this rule become relaxed?

      • greywarshark 8.2.1

        Mr Scooter
        When did this rule become relaxed? When the Nats and their funders decided that being relaxed was the most effective way of running the country, and instructed their Jester to be shown being relaxed in every photo op.

  9. adam 9

    “Stand up all victims of oppression
    For the tyrants fear your might
    Don’t cling so hard to your possessions
    For you have nothing if you have no rights
    Let racist ignorance be ended
    For respect makes the empires fall
    Freedom is merely privilege extended
    Unless enjoyed by one and all”

    Everyone sing now

  10. ropata 11

    Great edition of Waatea 5th Estate last night, Martyn wraps the Political Week with:
    Leader of the Opposition – Andrew Little
    Actor + Columnist – Oscar Kightley
    Human Rights Activist – Helen Kelly
    Documentary Maker – Bryan Bruce

    housing crisis, homelessness, benes forced into debt/paid to leave Auckland, the budget, and Bryan’s latest doco

  11. greywarshark 12

    I notice the comment of the TEU (Tertiary Education Union) came up with a catchy title for this budget:

    TEU president Sandra Grey and NZUSA president Linsey Higgins analyse what the 2016 ‘Hunger Games’ Budget means for tertiary education in New Zealand.

    • Sabine 12.1

      a teutonic friend of mine said this about the keyster and his mates:

      Well you vote for a serial gambler (that’s what playing with other peoples money on the financial markets really is, however well you try to hide this fact) you get a serial gambler. Throw in outdated neoliberal thinking and the idea that nations are nothing else than corporates. Voila. No brain. No common sense. We will wake up to a country where ripping each other off is a virtue not a disease.

      Hunger Games indeed.

      • greywarshark 12.1.1

        Sounds about right. For an objective analysis, what do we have going for us that draws ordinary people to come and live here I wonder? Is it that we are cute hobbits? Is it that we were one of the last countries on earth to be inhabited by man and it’s interesting to be part of a sort of TV plot in between Planet of the Apes and Lost and The Truman Show?

        • Sabine

          for the Chinese migrants that are part of my family, the green the space the good air.
          for the Europeans that are part of my family, they met their partners on their big o.e.
          for many others it was a travel here, and they liked the lifestyle, the jandal wearing laidbackness etc.
          for some it is work, like my Malay Chinese mother in law and her US born husband

          but for many it is now just an investment market. And frankly, most NZ’lers, even those who consider themselves rich, are not rich enough to beat the really rich of this planet.

          So while we may be the first ones to suffer, the shit will hit them too once the fan gets started.
          What goes around comes around. As for ripping each other off, i think that has been part of the NZ psyche for a while now. But always in an underhanded, slightly camouflaged way. Now however, after a few years of the Greed Gospel its ok to screw your neighbour, your country, your partners and even your kids, if it gets you ahead.
          As one Lady customers of mine said, I want a lifestyle when i am old. My question to her, does it not bother you that your child will not be able to afford a house in NZ soon. That was the last election. No she is not bothered, she wants a lifestyle for when she is 80.

          • Jack Ramaka

            First the settlors and the Settlor Governments stripped the Maori of their lands, despite the TOW being signed in good faith by both parties, then we had the neoliberals stripping of our State Assets and the Merchant Bankers stripping NZ Companies, now we are having our housing stocks and land holdings being stripped by foreign investors. What we need to realise is, these actions are not reversible hence if something is to be done to stop this it needs to be done now sooner rather than later!!!

  12. greywarshark 13

    Eddie Izzard talks sense compared to what we get from Nat politicians. At about 3 minutes he discusses flags in a very sensible way. Then he talks about the advantages of WW2,not, and how the Japanese and Germans should be used a peacemakers. Just parachute them in and have them tell everyone that they’ve been there done that, and it didn’t work.

    Recommended for putting you off the serious track you may be on, and providing you with an almost real alternative track.

  13. Jenny Kirk 15

    ” A group of four-wheel-drive enthusiasts trapped in snow on a Central Otago high-country road last week planned on retrieving their vehicles with a bulldozer until authorities scuppered the scheme.” From the NZ Herald this today.

    These are the people who went joy-riding in wild weather in their 4WDs and got stuck in the snow, and an enormous rescue attempt finally got them out – with the help of many volunteers. No brain. No common sense. Just like Sabine said above at 12.1 Silly, very silly, rich idiots. Mates of ShonKey no doubt.

    And I doubt they’ll be charged for any of the massive costs of the rescue.

    • weka 15.1

      I don’t know Jenny, I don’t think snow was forecasted when they originally got stuck. I don’t think they should be charged not least because we want people to call for help asap, not put that off out of fear of big bills.

      Their rescue plan for the vehicles does sound dangerous but there appears to be a lot of miscommunication going on between agencies and nothing reported from the group so who knows. I’m guessing it will be a while before the snow is gone.

      • Bearded Git 15.1.1

        Weka-they had a guy on The Panel discussing the forecast and snow was in the forecast before the 4WD guys set off.

      • Graeme 15.1.2

        My take on last Sunday’s forecast for the Otago hills was definitely not the day to be going over there. I go into Nevis a lot and wouldn’t have gone last Sunday just from the look of weather. I couldn’t believe it when I saw there was group, and of that size, stuck up there.

        • weka

          No-one had bothered to close the Crown Range road that day and cars had to be abandoned there too. /shrug


          I agree what the big group did was unwise, and it should be a lesson for others to take notice of what the locals say (I’m guessing that if you didn’t know the area the forecast didn’t look so bad). It does look more like an accident based on thoughtlessness rather than out and out negligent stupidity.

          • Graeme

            Where this lot got stuck is just under 1400m and it’s not a formed road, rather a series of ruts and mud holes across about 10km of alpine swamp, and it’s as exposed as you can get. There’s nowhere to hide. It’s difficult 4WD stuff on a nice day in summer. The top of Crown Range is 1100m and a sealed road, and with a snow plough going past every 5 minutes last Sunday. Totally different situation.

            Sorry, I put the 4WD group in the negligent stupidity category, especially taking children into that environment. There was a Snow Otago warning on Met Service website.

            There’s a decision making process to leading trips like that which appears to be lacking.

            • weka

              Yes, I get the differences, I was meaning that the snow caught people by surprise. I hadn’t heard there was snow warning.

          • Graeme

            Yes, Crown Range was closed last Sunday afternoon. Cars that were abandoned didn’t have chains. More muppetry, but normal for start of winter. The day before winter being shorts and tee shirts again this year, as normal, sucked a lot in, as it usually does.

          • greywarshark

            These people are likely to be those most likely to sneer at Nana State that makes an attempt to save people from danger by stopping things, putting up fences at dangerous places that they step over etc. and just care for its citizens using its greater information and resources than citizens do.

            Then you sympathise with them for not using their own judgment and behaving as free-thinking individuals in a sensible self-protective and self-limiting.

            And about paying, if they are not willing to pay their own way, using user pays in the neo lib world they aspire to, to the extent they won’t themselves pay to save their own lives then let them suffer the dire consequences that people who truly don’t have the payment for user pays. Money is what they treasure, more than their six and eight year old children.

            They are part of a society stripping others of whatever is of value, in this case the spare or working time of rescue volunteers and their gear and vehicles, all of which need money to keep them operating. Others pay, but they who can afford their vehicles and travel, are given the services they require free as of right?

            NZ neo lib society is into using other people’s goodwill or in a position of necessity and can be dragooned, to get them to give their time and stuff for free, for others benefit whose living slogan is “What’s yours is mine, and what’s mine is my own”.

            • Graeme

              Thank you for saying that Grey. Unfortunately this incident, which could easily have become a tragedy, really illustrates the me me me attitude that’s taken over New Zealand. Reading between the lines of the Herald /ODT article http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11646650 it looks like it was a pretty blunt conversation between Police and the group, ending with “it’s a public road, we’ll do what we like”

              I did a bit of reading to see what they could be charged with, and surprisingly it’s not much, maybe criminal nuisance, and that might only relate to them going back up there and getting into trouble again. I found this paper about the state of our law regarding responsibility for adventure activities http://www.otago.ac.nz/law/research/journals/otago036307.pdf Lengthy, but interesting read, particularly the recommendation for a new offence endangerment (p38-40)

              It appears that the escapade was organised as a group of independent private individuals, to bypass H&S requirements. So there’s no organiser. Hopefully the ‘elf from Worksafe will be having a poke around their workplace, could be productive with the attitudes they are publicly displaying. Could be some interactions with IRD about FBT too.

      • Sabine 15.1.3

        its winter, and the Ski Season starts officially at Queens Birthday weekend.

        Now they knew that snow was an option, but could not give a fuck.
        The same state that they would not want to pay taxes too, would come and rescue them.
        Many of the rescuers are voluntaries and as a consequence their families missed out on Dad or Mum, cause some dumbass could not be fucked to be sensible.

        They should be charged full cost, so that next time someone thinks that driving a car without appropriate gear up a mountain in winter thinks twice.

        And then they should be forced to pay dinner for two to each and any of the voluntaries that came to dig their sorry asses out of the snow.

        • weka

          Apparently they close the road at Queens Birthday.

          • Sabine

            its the official date. Has been for years.

            But frankly any idiot that goes up a mountain in winter at the end of the day deserves to pay for their rescue.

            These guys may have money, but they have shits for brains and no self preservation instinct.
            disclaimer, i grew up in the bavarian alps and lived in the french alps for a while.
            Mountains kill. Usually within the first night when people get lost without good gear and knowledge. These guys had nothing but attitude. And attitude also kills.

            No, let them pay for the resources that they wasted, let their partners scream and yell at them for a while, and maybe that will then teach them.
            Cause they obviously had not yet learned if there were trying to get the vehile/s back. Fuckwits.

            • Graeme

              And there’s plenty of graves along the Otago tops from the pioneer mining days. And plenty of more recent examples, some of them in the middle of summer. It’s a very beautiful place on the Otago tops, but quite high and viciously exposed. I carry the same gear in summer as winter, and have needed it.

              Looks like the plods explained that they were going to be charged if they tried to recover the vehicles. Hopefully it penetrated.

        • greywarshark

          You said that so well and so clearly. Tops!

    • And I doubt they’ll be charged for any of the massive costs of the rescue.

      Not unless we got a libertarian government while I wasn’t looking. Fine with me – I’m in no rush to see user pays applied to search and rescue or the emergency services.

      • weka 15.2.1

        Me too. I don’t see it as being too different from someone playing rugby and breaking their back. The State pays for recreational accidents. We really don’t want to be messing with that.

        • Sabine

          the difference with a guy playing rugby needing medical aid, and a few guys needing rescues in high mountainous areas at night time are not the same.
          Secondly, the rescuers essentially risk their lifes trying to safe the life of others. Maybe that should be looked for a moment, and again, i would like to stress that the rescuers are volonteers for the most part.
          The one thing the state does not pay for is enough full time paid rescue and first emergency services.

          So frankly, i think someone playing rugby on a field with medical personal at bay is not quite the thing that you want a high mountain rescue compare too. And yes, the high mountain rescue would have cost a fair coin.

          and always to remember, the state is us, we pay for that.

          • weka

            A rugby player who needs care for the rest of his life will cost the State a lot of money too.

            I get that the situations are different, that’s why I chose the comparison. I could have chosen a climber being rescued off a mountain, or a tourist being rescued off the Routeburn track. But I wanted to compare it to something every day and mundane and in completely different context, which we have no problem paying for. Milt’s comment was about user pays and libertarianism. Should rugby players who do something stupid on the field and ends up with a disability have to pay for that themselves, or should the state still pay?

            as an aside, I’m really happy for rescuers to not volunteer if that’s a problem for them. Unlike with rugby, if people go into the outdoors, there is always a risk of death, that’s just part of the deal (I don’t mean the rescuers, I mean the people recreating), and while I think there is a reasonable expectation of rescue, I don’t think that that means that it’s guaranteed. I feel very comfortable with rescuers deciding where the limit is. The other side of that is there will always be people who make mistakes and poor judgements and if we start punishing people for that we make the culture meaner and less honest. I’d prefer we pushed the culture back to being wiser about risk assessment.

            I do think that people aren’t as aware now, and I think cell phones have a lot to do with people taking more risks including with other people’s safety and resources, because in the back of their minds they know they can get someone to rescue them.

            • greywarshark

              The attitude that these 4WD display is that they have a right to do what they want with no interference. Who gives them the right to use roads and land to heave their motorised sheds over – the country, the government, the taxpayer? Thee people believe in individual responsibility when they are asked to pay tax to run the country’s services for both them and others. But when they need help personallty, oh then they aren’t going to take individual responsibility for the emergency costs and time required.

              And it takes a RW person at heart to argue that government should expect volunteers to help spoiled or ‘egocentric-regressed’ well-off, and refuse to help poor people who can hardly manage to live from day to day. And to quote rugby is odd. The reason for so many injuries in that game is because of players having a similar self-centred uncaring attitude to others playing the game, amongst parents and supporters involved, perhaps attacking the refugee (sorry typo for referee, but not unconnected with the first word used.)

              I make the point again that our guideline for the future must be to combine kindness and practicality in personal and nation-wide behaviour. It is not practical not to charge people living and wallowing in the market economy. Not charging them does not send the right market signals, and from the Courts comes the attitude of giving extra punishment in judgments – so as to discourage the others who might follow similar practices. The kindness is shown in going out into wild conditions to look for the lost sheeple. And the practical bottom line is that we are basically a poor country, we are struggling to raise the median wage, to do enough local business to provide living wages that enable people to have a life worth living.

          • Psycho Milt

            the difference with a guy playing rugby needing medical aid, and a few guys needing rescues in high mountainous areas at night time are not the same.

            They’re exactly the same, in the sense that they are people who need us, their fellow humans, to come to their assistance. What’s the alternative to a no-fault approach to this? I’m seeing one in which we effectively demand a credit card number or a cash deposit before rescuing people, or another in which search and rescue teams effectively decide who’s a dumb cunt that doesn’t deserve rescuing. Neither of those alternatives has any appeal whatsoever. Second-guessing the decisions of people who end up needing rescue services might make us feel better but it doesn’t offer any path to improvements in the service.

            • Sabine

              a guy going for his regular rugby game with his mates breaking a leg is one thing.
              a group of people ignoring all advise to the contrary, even signs that say don’t pass beyond here unless…needing to be rescued at night time cause they got themselves stuck is not the same thing.

              and yes, the rescue services can charge you, and sometimes they should.

              and there is the magic word, sometimes. I never said that rescue services should be paid for by the person that is rescued. I said these guys should be charged.

              • weka

                What if the rugby dude does something stupid that leads to his injury?

              • So, another alternative approach is for some as-yet-unidentified official body to determine who “legitimately” needed rescuing and who’s a dumb cunt who should have to pay for his rescue. First up, this body would probably cost more than it recovered. Also, as Weka points out below, a fairly obvious consequence of this is people who know they’ve done something stupid thinking twice about letting someone know they’re in trouble. Another obvious consequence is litigation – opinions about whether a particular decision was stupid or not are just that: opinions. Opinions that involve money get disputed by lawyers. Is that a productive use of the nation’s cash?

                There’s a reason why we’ve gone for no-fault approaches to divorce, accident compensation and search/rescue – it’s because the alternatives are worse.

                • weka

                  It’d probably lead to people lying to rescue services too, which creates more risk.

                • Pat

                  i guess the occasion may come when the volunteers decide they won’t put themselves at risk for certain types of events

                  • greywarshark

                    Like the officials did at Pike River and after the Christchurch earthquakes when various paid services were needed, but not willing to extend themselves.

                    • Pat

                      not sure I understand what you mean there greywarshark.

                    • greywarshark

                      It seems clear to me. Volunteer rescuers need paid services to assist, funds for vehicles, equipment. At big disasters like Pike River and after the Christchurch earthquake, paid services were needed, there were volunteers for various tasks, but officialdom prevented rather than facilitated and assisted efforts. Another reason why volunteers might feel they are pushing uphill.

                      At Pike River the miners wanted to go in while there was a window of opportunity and check for conditions and possible survivors. The police vetoed that but wouldn’t go in themselves, and didn’t call for volunteers from the public or the Force. Officialdom unwilling to extend themselves, but imposing a blockade on civilian organisation and control.

                      And after the Christchurch earthquake businesses were prevented from going into the CBD though they could have been filtered in and out with 10 minute time limits to recover items of trade and office records. They werent allowed, the police wouldn’t do it. But salvage people could and expensive stock items were taken from premises and sent to Auckland to be sold.

                      It is different from saving people in snowstorms, but those above that came to mind make me think that the civil rescue systems in NZ have to be revamped. They are skewed towards rescuing the foolhardy and stupid. Also they shouldn’t be under the control of the police IMO.

            • weka

              It will also lead to people putting off calling for help until either it’s too late or putting rescue teams are more risk.

              • Sabine

                i doubt Weka. When you need help you need help.
                Fact is that already the services can charge for prank calls or someone lighting a fire that escalates as example. This can already be done.

                But in saying that, i want you to realise that every time someone calls the services, fire, ambulance, mountain rescue etc, over half of the staff that will attend are voluntaries. Secondly, many times the services are funded by bakesales and the likes, and yes, thats what it amounts to.
                So these guys being smart asses that count themselves better then those that are good at 4 wheeling in the mountains are wasting resources. Resources that they most likely don’t fund, or give a donation too.

                Question Weka, when have you last given a donation to St. Johns, Wespac Rescue Helicopter or the Cost and Fire services. Because you know, many of us don’t actually think about how these services are funded.

                And realise also that in times of global warming and weather weirding these same resources will be streched more and more. Storms, Floods, high winds, etc etc all cause damage and and everytime it happens resources are used.

                No i don’t think that people will stop calling the rescue services, but i hope that some dumb fucks might be deterred if they know that if they got themselves in a pickle by refusing to head advise, warning signs, weather report, time of the day, and signs posted, that they might be charged for the use of the helicopter, the cops involved, the gasoline used, the re-reinforcements called in to keep the office and station manned while the day to day crew is out bringing them back home.

                Think of it.

                • weka

                  It would help if you stopped assuming that you are the only one that knows anything about this and no-one else does.

                  You’re also pretty much ignoring the points Milt and I have raised, so nt much point in talking really is there.

                  • Sabine

                    Mate, no one quite assumes as much as you do. And fact is that you have not addressed any of the other points i have raised. Why is that.
                    You only talk about providing a free service, and i don’t disagree with you there. You however do not speak about how that same services is a. manned and b. paid for. You just want the service to be available.
                    In regards to climat change how do you think that is gonna happen, and how would it affect you if we don’t have enough machinery and man power?

                    and you know what, at night when the beeper goes off, or on the weekends, or on the holiday periods, and the fire burn, or the earth shatters, and the wind rip of the roofs, i know fucking better as i live rescue service. its twenty four hours, 7 days a week, 365 days a year, and this is another instance in which middle NZ has not got an inkling just how much they depend on someone doing something for nothing, and sometimes risking their own lifes, like picking some dumbfucks of a mountain at night time.

                    And this month our in house voluntary was on call 15 nights. That is only the nights, cause you know what, THERE.ARE.NOT.ENOUGH.VOLUNTEERS!!!! Nor full-time paid rescue personnel. it does not include weekly training nights, weekend and other duties.

                    btw. Weka, the fire fighters of this country, many of them volunteers today did the step challenge climbing the Sky Tower in full gear and breathing apparatus. They, their families and their supporters managed to raise a fair bit of money for research. That too is something we do.

                    so yes please tell me something i don’t know. cheers.

                    • Kiwiri

                      Appreciate your comments that have helped my own thinking about the issues, Sabine. Cheers!

        • greywarshark

          Recreational accidents. I think that there was talk of a payment to ACC for sports so that they do make a little contribution to their extreme cost for people who are totally paralysed or brain-damaged. I presume that there is some payment made per player by clubs. Perhaps someone who knows if they pay ACC could inform.

  14. Jenny Kirk 16

    Frankly, I thought they (the 4WD roaders) were fool-hardy. And them trying to get their vehicles out now just highlights that. The weather down south has been wild at times lately, and changes rapidly.

    This is from another Herald story about the matter .
    “Authorities and residents have previously raised concerns about four-wheel-drive expeditions on Waikaia Bush Rd. Deeply rutted and swampy at the Piano Flat end, it is understood six vehicles were towed out of the area last month. The road would be closed at Queen’s Birthday weekend for the winter.
    Southland District Council roading engineer Bruce Miller last month said drivers usually got into trouble beyond a gate at Whitecombe. A sign warns drivers of the dangers. “Inexperienced people, Queen St drivers we call them, go up there and think they can drive it and they can’t,” he said……

    Senior Constable Adam Roberts, of Riversdale, has been involved in several search and rescue operations involving lost or stuck drivers. (He) would not drive past the gates in his four-wheel-drive vehicle because it was “too dangerous”.
    Otago Recreational 4WD Group president Graeme Thompson said the challenging track was not built for ordinary four-wheel-drive vehicles.”

    • Gristle 16.1

      They are the perfect analogy for NZ today. Going into a rough place towards the end of the day with the weather closing in, and being under prepared. But thinking they know enough and have the resources to get through.

      Which of the following situations does this apply to:
      1. Housing
      2. CC
      3. Health system

  15. Gangnam Style 17

    Behold the promised Brighter Future!

    “ONE News reports tonight that Ms Bennett conceded today that homelessness is a growing problem.

    “Certainly what I’ve seen is it has been more acute in the last two years,” she said.”


    • Foreign waka 17.1

      Let have them eat cake – she said and took another bite of the creamy delight in front of her….

  16. Good article and photos… and a question

    Erosion is eating away at New Zealand’s coastline, with satellite images showing the dramatic impact of its appetite on small communities the length of the country.

    It has forced people from their homes, and caused councils to relocate public infrastructure away from the encroaching sea.

    But the issue is a contentious one, as shown on Thursday, when the Christchurch City Council announced the team of five experts comprising the second peer review panel to assess Tonkin and Taylor’s Coastal Hazard Assessment Report. The move came after skepticism of the science behind the report, which identified 6000 properties that could be susceptible to erosion and nearly 18,000 at risk of coastal inundation over the next 50 to 100 years.


    Can someone direct me to or explain what “The move came after skepticism of the science behind the report” means – what was the problem?

  17. This will be worth a watch I hope

    Coming up this Sunday on ‪#‎TheHui‬.. The story that’s dividing Aotearoa..
    We have an exclusive interview with convicted trout poacher Thomas Tawha and the sister of his co-offender Dave Pake Leef.

    • weka 19.1

      Oh good. What time is that on?

    • mauī 19.2

      A bit of a taster, when alternative media goes mainstream 🙂

      • marty mars 19.2.1

        Yeah I saw that teaser on facebook – not sure what else they are going to say cos they just said it all!

        Also this “divide across social media” stuff – is that true? I didn’t have any of my fbook friends disagree when I posted about it 🙂

        • Psycho Milt

          Also this “divide across social media” stuff – is that true?

          Well, this blog is social media and the story certainly prompted disagreement when mentioned here last week, so, yes.

          • marty mars

            only from you, bm, chuck and tim – so… sorry if I don’t take that very seriously

            • Psycho Milt

              Back in 1981 i was doing cash jobs for one of Christchurch’s many scarily right-wing Dutch immigrants. One time while a bunch of us were eating lunch he posited there were hardly any people opposed to the Springbok tour and the media was bullshitting us about it, because he didn’t know a single person who was against it. I refrained from mentioning that he knew me and I was against it (on the basis that I wanted paying at the end of the day), or from mentioning that all his friends were most likely racist wingnuts like him so of course he didn’t know anyone who opposed the tour (ditto). It’s a phenomenon that crops up often on Kiwiblog, but I hadn’t expected to see it here.

  18. weka 20

    This is designed for Māori land owners to assist in land management, but the map covers all of NZ. You can set it to look at historic vegetation and see what the area you live in used to look like before we cut down so many trees and drained so many wetlands.


  19. weka 22

    Interesting piece of journalism about a Kathmandu store shredding stock rather than giving it to charity.


  20. greywarshark 23

    Like Tom Lehrer? Here is one I haven’t heard before called Selling Out, very appropriate for now. Lyrics are included.

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