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Open mike 28/07/2016

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, July 28th, 2016 - 204 comments
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openmikeOpen mike is your post.

For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose. The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).

Step up to the mike …

204 comments on “Open mike 28/07/2016”

  1. Paul 1

    Can you believe this?
    The government are doing this – despite a housing crisis.

    Uncaring, greedy…….

    Some tenants living in the hundreds of state and council homes north of Wellington that have been put on the market are worried about what the sale mean for their future.

    The Government and Horowhenua District Council have unveiled a plan to sell 364 houses across Horowhenua and Kapiti, including 151 Housing New Zealand homes in Levin, 21 in Foxton, 70 in Otaki and seven in Shannon.

    Almost all of the houses are occupied and their tenants are mostly elderly, single people or single parents.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/82526332/housing-new-zealand-council-plan-to-sell-hundreds-of-state-and-council-homes

    • locus 1.1

      this government and its ministers seem to have no concept of what it’s like to fear your home being taken off you, the stress of not knowing if you’re going to be forcibly evicted, the humiliation of being at the mercy of those who have the power to move you on, and break up families and communities

      everything this government and its compliant district councils are doing – or not doing – in regards to housing is seeding a disaster for the future, not just for state tenants but also for the next generation of New Zealanders who won’t be able to afford to buy their own home

      I find it particularly depressing to hear decent people so quickly buying-in to the meme pedalled by this government, that all these reports are a media beat-up

      uncaring and greedy is too kind…

      I’d add one or more of these: ‘incompetent, unaware of reality, in denial, living in their comfortable bubble, complacent, arrogant, dismissive….’

    • Chooky 1.2

      +100 Paul and locus

    • North 1.3

      My God…..it’s like they’re being picked off…….’cos they’re poor and ain’t got their own house. Vultures are circling. In this OUR New Zealand. OUR New Zealand didn’t used to be like this. Some bastards gotta be brought to account !

  2. Tony Veitch (not the partner-bashing 3rd rate broadcaster) 2

    We know them by the company they keep!

    Donald Trump has chosen Pence as his running mate – an extreme right wing religious nutter!

    Hillary Clinton picked Kaine for VP – a pro-war, pro-Wall Street establishment neocon.

    Bernie’s supporters walked out of the DNC en masse!

    If Trump wins, expect to see the whole country lurch to the religious right, because I don’t believe Trump has the ability, understanding or the patience to govern. His task will be ‘to make America great again.’ Lol

    If Clinton wins don’t expect any of Bernie’s platforms to be implemented. Clinton, with her best friend Bill advising her, will not move against those who own her. Errh!

    It may be a wasted vote, but if I was an American, Jill Stein would get my nod. The lesser of two evils is still evil – but Jill stands for everything that needs to be changed in the USA.

    [Because of the regular misuse of the word ‘establishment’ for the purposes of trolling and abuse, it has been added to the mod list. That means comments that use the word will be held in moderation until released. It might be appropriate for neo con to go in there too if it is also going to be used in ignorance and out of context. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tim_Kaine TRP]

    • adam 2.1

      Has a stalinist coup happened on the Standard?

      And that stadandesters must conform to some new form of Politically Correct newspeak that is divined from up on high?

      I would have thought neocon and neoliberal were in essence interchangeable after 40 odd years, especially when we have a liberal elite who have given up on a socialist programme.

      Is it no longer true that the established hierarchy can and indeed has a name?

      One thing about free speech, is you have to hear a whole lot of stuff you don’t like, and some of it may even offend you.

      • s y d 2.1.1

        Are you serious? Moderating comments for misuse of a word…

        “‘Words’, he said, ‘is oh such a twitch-tickling problem to me all my life. So you must simply try to be patient and stop squibbling. As I am telling you before, I know exactly what words I am wanting to say, but somehow or other they is always getting squiff-squiddled around.”

        • mauī 2.1.1.1

          Agree with you guys. Watch out next week, Blairite, Sanders and Jill Stein will be thrown into moderation too..

          • te reo putake 2.1.1.1.1

            Yes, dear.

            (Just thought I’d use that line for the first and only time. I find it sneering and belittling, kind of like ‘Zip it, sweety’. But it has its fans here at TS so I suppose it’s OK.)

          • North 2.1.1.1.2

            Frankly, I am falling over in near disbelief this night Thursday……

      • No coup, Adam. There has been a tightening up on abusive language for a while now. One troll in particular has been regularly misusing neocon and other similar phrases to stifle debate. So, for the time being, some words will drop comments into moderation. They’ll quickly be released if the words are being used in context, or moderated appropriately, then released, if they are not.

        Read the policy (top of the page) if you are confused about how the Standard is moderated.

        • adam 2.1.2.1

          Can you give a list of the new words you have deemed abusive, I know policy says words, but I’m at a loss at what they are.

          Is the subtext of your message another move in your public fight with Colonial Viper?

          That has become truly a tired affair for the rest of us. At this point I wish you two would either copulate, or get into a right proper ruckus – teeth and all. Rather than this snippy affair that has gone on for months from both sides.

          • weka 2.1.2.1.1

            I’d like to clarify things a bit as someone who has access to the backend as an author. From what I can see, this is a decision that TRP has made on his own. There hasn’t been any discussion in the moderators’ forum. So please don’t assume this is anything other than TRP’s action.

            As an author and moderator, I think it’s a bad move, the words chosen, the reasons given for the decision, and the fact that it was done unilaterally but presented as being something that the people who run the place agreed on.

            It is possible that TRP has talked to other authors offsite, including Lynn.

            From my experience in the front end of the site, I would say that TRP brings lots of good things to TS, but he also does some daft shit and some down right damaging shit. I would put this in the latter category (daft and damaging).

            I would guess that you are right adam, that this was triggered by something to do with CV (but I haven’t looked that closely). And yes it smacks of authoritarianism. The irony there is that TRP has his own history of frequently winding up people by using political words as pejoratives. So yet another example of crazy making.

            Judging something to be trolling is often very subjective. But TS traditionally has managed that quite lightly and really only premoderated words like N*zi or Tr*ll, which are well known trolling/flamming words in the internets. Premoderating words like ‘est*blisment’ is ridiculous and makes TS a laughing stock in the political blogosphere.

            Having said all that, there has been a tightening up on moderation this year, and that appears to be getting good results. But the things that have changed that have made the difference, IMO, are the moderations that are clear and concise around just stepping in quickly and shutting down flame wars. I don’t see TRP’s moderated words as contributing to that and will probably just make things worse as they add to the culture of bullying and misuse of power.

            btw, you can probably circumvent the premoderation by adding in asterisks. eg est*blisment. Of course TRP can then go and add ‘est*blisment’ to the list, but it’s a long word with lots of permutations, so have a play around with it.

            I’d also suggest for the braver amongst us that we start using the word est*blisment as much as possible (knowing there is a risk of backlash). Or even without the asterisk. People power and all that. Plus the action deserves all the ridicule it can get. Fight back I say, but do it in a fun way.

            (I don’t have the same level of author permissions as TRP so I can’t see the full range of tools that he has access to. I also can’t for instance release comments from moderation unless they are in one of my own posts).

            • Tony Veitch (not the partner-bashing 3rd rate broadcaster) 2.1.2.1.1.1

              Wow! What a backlash about my (I thought) rather innocuous comments, which no-one has bothered to read – fixating on the bold at the end!

              Perhaps I got the rebuke because, a day or so ago, I commented that I was with CV on the Trump/Clinton thing.

              For what it’s worth, and being very careful not to use the proscribed words, I still think Trump will win – though God help us all if he does.

              Both Trump and Clinton carry too much baggage (banned word?) into this campaign. Clinton’s is political, Trumps apolitical. But, again, for what it’s worth, I’d still vote for Jill Stein if I was an American.

              • Colonial Viper

                Hillary Clinton is the candidate of the Structural Status Quo.

                You know it and I know it. The truth is bleeding obvious.

                Not everyone can handle the truth however.

              • adam

                I read what you said Tony Veitch (not the partner-bashing 3rd rate broadcaster). I liked what you said. It was the bold at the bottom, which flummoxed me.

        • Ad 2.1.2.2

          I would definitely encourage stronger moderation here.

          • adam 2.1.2.2.1

            What for the use of the word copulation and the the word ruckus? In my defense, both were and are the most humors terms I could find, rather than reach for gutter idioms.

            Or at my overall discontent with an on going fight between two authors at the standard that creates an ongoing quandary for all who have to witness it?

          • te reo putake 2.1.2.2.2

            Thanks, Ad. From the start, the site has tried to encourage open debate, while discouraging abuse. The levels of tolerance fluctuate and in the early years there was an almost anarchic approach (Robinsod is the exemplar for that, worth looking for his or her’s contributions for some cheap laughs when the search function comes back).

            For me, the penny dropped around the time I wrote the ‘Broken’ post. So I’ve kept an eye out for words, terms or phrases that are being deliberately used in abusive ways. Happily, most commenters accept the moderation without complaint and quickly find other ways to express their opinions that add to the mix rather than close debate down.

            • Draco T Bastard 2.1.2.2.2.1

              Robinsod is the exemplar for that, worth looking for his or her’s contributions for some cheap laughs when the search function comes back

              Or you could just use Google.

              20 Tips To Use Google Search Efficiently

            • Rosie 2.1.2.2.2.2

              “Thanks, Ad. From the start, the site has tried to encourage open debate, while discouraging abuse.”

              Man, I was lucky to get away with what I did last night, strong abuse,………………I thought I might have been flying pretty close to the wire. Better keep my head down from now on.

    • weston 2.2

      I agree if one simply took the author of the post above and simply believed what he said about kaine most would think he was an evil bastard …read the wiki info and presto he isnt .Im a bit supprized anyone would need instruction regarding the word establishment tho i mean would i be in trouble if i said hillary was establishment ?

      • There’s no problem with the word establishment. However it has been used in conjunction with other pejorative words which have been intended to insult or abuse.. The mod filter isn’t sophisticated enough to scrub out phrases or combinations of words so it’s been caught up. However, it’s only caused a moments delay for half a dozen comments, so no harm done.

      • There’s no problem with the word establishment. However it has been used in conjunction with other pejorative words which have been intended to insult or abuse. The mod filter isn’t sophisticated enough to scrub out phrases or combinations of words so it’s been caught up. However, it’s only caused a moments delay for half a dozen comments, and the use of similar abusive phrases seems to have diminished as a result. So, better conversations, more intelligent debate. That’s what we all want, right?

        • Bill 2.2.2.1

          Ten minutes isn’t ‘a moments delay’ – and that happened for at least one comment.

          There was (and still are) a handful of perfectly okay comments sitting in trash. Now sure, they may have wound up there for some really weird reason (it duplicates from time to time for some reason) or just because a commenter deleted their own comment because…well, moderators don’t ever throw comments into trash. Right?

          Anyway. I did manage to save the Robert Reich link that someone else had tried to post. Can’t imagine why they’d post it and then delete it (ie -send it to the trash folder) during their edit time, but hey….

          Honestly can’t see where the ‘better conversations’ or ‘more intelligent debate’ is, as a result of essentially flaming everyone. But again, hey….

          • te reo putake 2.2.2.1.1

            No worries, Bill, thanks for your thoughts. I was trying to find a soft way to moderate abuse, but clearly that’s not going to work if too many people have objections to the concept. I’ll just ban instead, though I’ll probably give a warning first, unless it’s excessive abuse.

          • marty mars 2.2.2.1.2

            Maybe you authors should have a vote and let democracy decide the next steps. Seriously – this shitfight that is going on imo needs to be RESOLVED.

            Not telling you what to do of course but I am asking. Non violent communication is a good model for resolving conflicts.

            • Bill 2.2.2.1.2.1

              I can’t say I haven’t tried.

              • I know Bill.

                There seem to be sneaky agendas here. I take voices passive aggressive threats as being completely unnecessary – weak personal qualities exposed – he’ll probably threaten to beat me up again for that one though.

                As for cv – he is not left – end of story. Too much trumputin bullshit – he’s like trump a trojan – cv the bloody Trojan nzfirster now imo.

                Anyhow good luck with it all.

                • weka

                  It’s a real dilemma when you have an otherwise fairly functional group of people with a common purpose and one of them thinks it’s about doing what they want as an individual. I don’t know the solution to that, and I’m not sure a majority vote would sort it out tbh. The impression I have is that everyone has pretty full lives and are reluctant to put energy into it, especially as there seems to be history of people having to leave.

                  It’s a major stumbling block to getting new authors IMO.

                • Colonial Viper

                  As for cv – he is not left – end of story. Too much trumputin bullshit – he’s like trump a trojan – cv the bloody Trojan nzfirster now imo.

                  Trump is far more Left economically than the Neocon Globalist Status Quo.

                  Putin is also far more Left economically than the Neocon Globalist Status Quo.

                  And NZ First is far further Left economically than National and Labour.

                  You need your bearings checked mate they are shot.

                  • Classic – what a joke. Your slogans belong from another time they are hilarious – you have become a caricature little trumputin.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Hi Marty Mars, I’m afraid your gut reaction is totally on a tilt.

                      Trump wants to raise trade barriers, wants to bring manufacturing back from China to the USA, wants to reneg on free trade deals like NAFTA and the TPP, wants to stop spending on big wars and wants to spend on new infrastructure throughout the USA.

                      That’s way more left than the Democrats.

                      Putin has created a capitalist economy where the billionaire oligarchs are strongly reined in, where the resources of the country are heavily regulated/owned by the state, where a pension is available to every Russian, where tertiary education and public healthcare is broadly available and either free or reasonably cheap.

                      That’s way more left than the Democrats.

                      As for NZ First – their economic stance including willingness to nationalise key assets and ban foreign ownership is way more Left than Labour.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Further, Putin, Trump and Peters all understand the critical importance of *economic sovereignty* and all three are willing to act on that understanding.

                      That’s way more Left than most of the other political parties in NZ.

                    • weka

                      He will appoint an ultra conservative judge to the Supreme Court though.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      yes weka, that’s undeniable.

                    • And build a wall

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Did you see the 8 foot steel and wire wall the Democrats built around their convention? To keep other Democrats out?

                    • No. But what about this trumpwall, do you actually agree with that?

                    • Colonial Viper

                      You’re not a real country if you cannot control the integrity of your borders and your seas. So the generic concept of the TrumpWall I agree with*

                      *PS it will never be built, he’s only trolling the Left Wing on this.

                  • miravox

                    “Trump is far more Left economically than the Neocon Globalist Status Quo.”

                    Cool. I haven’t heard what his policies for redistribution of income and lowering societal income are. I guess you can help with that. Any idea what his taxation policies for the avoidance and minimisation schemes of the top 1% are? Is he going to strengthen trade unions and ensure fair labour laws – pay, safety etc.?

                    • Colonial Viper

                      He’s going to ensure that there is massive working class employment in rebuilding the US manufacturing and infrastructure base, bringing back jobs from overseas.

                      He’s not going to rely on modern Lefty methods of handouts.

                      BTW Clinton is the oligarchy bankster candidate. She’ll protect the 0.1% exactly like Obama has.

                    • weka

                      What are his plans for people that can’t work?

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Same as Obama’s. Let their unemployment insurance expire and throw them on the $140/month welfare scrap heap implemented by Bill Clinton.

                    • miravox

                      “He’s not going to rely on modern Lefty methods of handouts.”

                      And the 1%?

                      What are are the plans for upskilling the workforce for these massive projects (maybe he’ll import skilled labour for less than it would cost to upskill?). And again – pay and conditions. I quite like that old-fashioned lefty way of ensuring people who can work get decent pay for decent work i.e. a fair share. No word on how those who can’t work in paid employment are going to get a share of the economic pie?

                      btw, this is about how Trump is or isn’t a lefty, not where Clinton stands.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      He’ll elucidate on his plans more as the Presidential campaign gets going.

                      But I’m sure he has comprehensive staff training programmes within his own casinos and hotels.

                    • Bill

                      Trump might have some economic thoughts (policies?) that sound left or leftish. But his thoughts around social issues, as far as I can tell, are very, very much to the right.

                      The same basic template, though not as extreme, applies to Peters.

                      You’re right that the establishment left has, for the most part, abandoned what we used to think of as left leaning economics.

                      But for fuck’s sake CV, if the economic choice is between a greater or lesser role for the state (orthodox parliamentarian leftism) or a greater or lesser role for the market (orthodox rightish parliamentarianism)…then unless Trump is going to expand the role of the state in health care and education etc…ie – have the state do all of those things that an orthodox leftist programme would call for, then he’s no more ‘left’ then fly.

                      What Trump actually wants is to bring the shitty low wage/ zero protection environment that’s been developed overseas by US corporations, brought back into the US. There are bugger all unions left to fight a workers corner and I just can’t envisage Trump making any good change to Labor Law in the US. Can you?

                      At least Clinton might be forced (reluctantly) to back a living wage and such like and she certainly won’t go all Mussolini on anyone giving her and her administration shit. Trump will be looking to have wages set by ‘the market’ (code for letting employers fuck workers over with impunity) and I suspect he could well go all Mussolini on matters.

                      Yes, he sounds as though he might be more isolationist, and that could be a relief for many people the world over. But at the same time, he’s saying he’ll deal with terrorists who link themselves to Islam. Short of dropping a nuclear device on Riyadh, I can’t see how he squares those two things off. Can you?

                      shitshitshit…rant over. For now.

                    • miravox

                      “But I’m sure he has comprehensive staff training programmes within his own casinos and hotels.”

                      I wonder if he’ll open up a Trump technical training school, similar to the Trump University?

                      Anyway, about the 1%, tax, and employee rights etc…

                      I guess I don’t agree with your inference that economic nationalism is solely a left-wing political concern, that the objectives and expectations of that economic nationalism are the same, or that it was the sole, or event the main basis of left wing politics.

                  • John shears

                    CV Have been to Spec Savers lately?

        • marty mars 2.2.2.2

          What other words or phases have you got concerns about? You know the ones intended to insult or abuse.

  3. Tautoko Mangō Mata 3

    “Claire Trevett: Rats! Labour caught in a trap of its own making”
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=11682586

    Claire equates the excess of men in the Labour Party with JKs elimination of pests.
    This is a poor analogy, Claire. Balance is not the same as elimination.
    This article reflects badly on its author. WO no longer required?

    • Jens 3.1

      Claire is getting desperate as the Tories continue to fall in the polls and fail the country.

      FYI Damien O’Connor is not a list MP and he won his electorate easily just like the term before last. This time it was the biggest win for him yet, and the Nat candidate he was up against was a woman, Maureen Pugh, he wiped the floor with her. Actually I wonder if Pugh has an investment in the 1080 factory? Last I heard she had interests in a helicopter company, I guess they will be busy making $ from dropping the poison. Hey Maureen where are the missing millions? Still under investigation is it? Mhmm… we will get to the bottom of that
      http://www.greystar.co.nz/content/blowtorch-pugh%E2%80%99s-record

      • James 3.1.1

        Continue to fall in the polls ? Did you actually read the last poll ?????

        Also most people think the country is going in the right direction- so I think you comment about failing the country whilst universally accepted on this forum (by the lefties anyway) might is out of step with the rest of the population.

    • Mrs Brillo 3.2

      Comments were allowed on this dopy article, so I commented early this morning.
      Not a single comment had been published by close of play Thursday.
      Granny’s up to her old tricks again.

  4. locus 4

    Whatever the causes or apparent justifications for war…. starving hundreds of thousands of men, women and children, is well into the realms of war crime:

    Seige by Syrian regime on Aleppo tightens….

    Government troops have repeatedly used sieges to help starve rebel-held cities into submission. Human rights groups fear the tactic will be deployed in Aleppo, where up to 300,000 people are living in areas under rebel control.

    Food will run out within weeks, a group of 24 aid agencies working on the ground warned, and regime bombing raids have targeted several of the few remaining working hospitals in those parts of the city.

    http://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/jul/27/dozens-dead-in-syria-bomb-blast-qamishli?CMP=Share_AndroidApp_Email

    • Draco T Bastard 4.1

      Ah, so it’s only a fear and not actually happening.

      If the West didn’t want a sectarian war in Syria perhaps they shouldn’t have started one.

      • Wayne 4.1.1

        Draco,

        The West didn’t start it, Assad did by bombing and shooting his own people during the Arab spring. And you actually know that, though it does not suit your narrative. That in turn caused the armed insurrection. Only then did the West, and others (Iran) get involved. But the civil war was well underway by then.

        I am sure some of the western arms supplied to various anti-Assad factions will have ended up in the hands of ISIS, since in 2012 to 2014, the anti -Assad forces were highly disparate. It is not obvious that various western countries, including Turkey had a good idea of the nature of the various factions.

        Modern civil wars seem to have many more factions that in the past, where civil wars looked like two states at war (US Civil war, Spanish civil war, etc).

        • Colonial Viper 4.1.1.1

          The West didn’t start it, Assad did by bombing and shooting his own people during the Arab spring. And you actually know that, though it does not suit your narrative. That in turn caused the armed insurrection. Only then did the West, and others (Iran) get involved. But the civil war was well underway by then.

          bullshit Wayne.

          Syria is in the middle of its worst drought in 1200 years (climate change). Hundreds of thousands of impoverished farmers fled their failing land and headed into the cities, causing massive social instability that the west was happy to contribute to. (Producing detailed plans to destabilise the Assad regime has been a key goal of the USA for at least a decade).

          This link is to a 2006 US Gov cable describing the “vulnerabilities” of the Assad regime and how they can be “exploited” to overthrow Assad.

          https://wikileaks.org/plusd/cables/06DAMASCUS5399_a.html

          Yes, Assad managed the resulting protests and civil unrest badly leading to hundreds of civilian deaths.

          At which point the west decided to go full scale regime change, allowing thousands of Islamic fighters to infiltrate into Syria via NATO partner Turkey, and funding and arming these Islamists in a 5 year long fight to try and depose Assad.

          The US did the same to Afghanistan by the way to take down the USSR. They have form and expertise in this.

          In Syria the US gave the nod to its ME allies to do the same particularly: Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Turkey.

          And 400,000 dead Syrians later the West is still keen to keep fighting Assad right down to the last Syrian.

          But there’s a problem now Wayne. Turkey is distancing itself from its former pro-ISIS stance. Which means that the Islamic Rebels in northern Syria are about to find their lifelines back into Turkey cut.

        • Draco T Bastard 4.1.1.2

          The West didn’t start it, Assad did by bombing and shooting his own people during the Arab spring.

          Considering the US has been wanting to get rid of Assad for some time now because he wouldn’t let through the pipeline that they wanted it’s a serious question as to just how much the US pushed those protests in the first place:

          In the section on Syria, Bensaada focuses on a handful of Syrian opposition activists who received free US training in cyberactivism and nonviolent resistance beginning in 2006. One, Ausama Monajed, is featured in the 2011 film How to Start a Revolution about a visit with Gene Sharp in 2006. Monajed and others worked closely with the US embassy, funded by the Middle East Partnership Initiative (MEPI). This is a State Department program that operates in countries (such as Libya and Syria) where USAID is banned.

        • framu 4.1.1.3

          “The West didn’t start it, ”

          much of the middle east consider the crusades to have never ended

          its all about where you put the starting point isnt it

        • Paul 4.1.1.4

          I don’t think so.
          Do you still believe the west’s propaganda?
          Wonder if you’d continued to follow Goebbel’s arguments In 1943?
          Anyway, here’s a refresher for you on what really has been happening.

        • reason 4.1.1.5

          http://norightturn.blogspot.co.nz/search?q=Mapp%2Bwar

          I wouldn’t believe anything ‘Wayne the bad mapp’ claims about wars ….

          This horrible [deleted] individual is prepared to join illegal wars where children get burned, maimed and killed …………. so NZ can get trade deals ….

          Wayne is not only full of shit ……………… it’s really really bad shit.

          http://norightturn.blogspot.co.nz/search?q=Mapp%2Bwar

          [Allegation deleted because it can’t be substantiated. TRP]

    • Draco T Bastard 4.2

      Ah, so it’s only a fear and not actually happening.

      If the West didn’t want a sectarian war in Syria perhaps they shouldn’t have started one.

      • locus 4.2.1

        Draco, my point in commenting was to shine the spotlight on the horror of war – not to start a pointless armchair dingdong

        I have no tolerance whatsoever for people supporting Assad on whatever grounds. He should have stepped down in 2011 and this war might never have been fought.

        There are over 1 million people in 52 besiged communities in the country, 49 of them are under seige by the Assad regime, 2 of them by the rebels, and 1 of them by ISIS while the Assad regime denies them aid.

        https://thesyriacampaign.org

        Also I have no tolerance at all for people who argue the semantics, and don’t seem to be moved by people being bombed, shelled and starved into submission – as the daily reports and photos from journalists risking their lives show us, as the streams of refugees into Europe tell us, as the 24 aid agencies in Aleppo are documenting.

        I find it incredibly depressing to read the bullshit partisan arguments being trotted out about who caused it all and who is worse than who, and that we are all being conned by propoganda. All sides in the Syrian war have killed and are continuing to kill. The forces with the most tanks, heavy artillery and aircraft have killed and continue to kill the most.

        The US and Russia are now both directly involved in the war and both of these countries have entreated with Assad to step down. He must – that is the only way forward.

        • Draco T Bastard 4.2.1.1

          He should have stepped down in 2011 and this war might never have been fought.

          Or, more likely, it would have been a hell of a lot worse. And all of the reports I’ve seen show that a majority of Syrians support Assad. If it was taken to elections, Assad would be voted back in.

          Would you still be calling for him to step down then? I’m pretty sure that the US and their lickspittles would be.

          Also I have no tolerance at all for people who argue the semantics, and don’t seem to be moved by people being bombed, shelled and starved into submission

          And I have no tolerance for those idiots who demand that we act emotionally as it’s the wrong thing to do as it never solves anything. It has a tendency to start wars rather than end them.

          The US and Russia are now both directly involved in the war and both of these countries have entreated with Assad to step down.

          Last time I looked Russia was still supporting Assad and the US wants Assad to step down so that they can create a power vacuum and place another puppet government there. As they did with Iran (1953) and Iraq (1960s, 2000s).

          • locus 4.2.1.1.1

            if much of the world’s media haven’t shaken your belief in Assad, and clearly you trust the evidence that he’s highly popular, despite 5 years of destroying most of the cities of his country, and given his track record of murdering thousands of unarmed civilians to quell protests in 2011, there’s probably not much a random blogger called locus can say that will alter your views

            I remain convinced that if Assad had stepped down in 2012 and Morocco had led the UN proposed democratic transition of power this war could have been averted. Your statement that this would have allowed the US to step in to create a puppet government is no less of a supposition than mine. Irrespective of who might be right, in 2012 the Russians and Chinese voted down the UN resolution for Assad to step down, despite clear advice from ME experts that the end game of this would be civil war in Syria.

            I think now is not the time to argue rights and wrongs – there will be plenty of evidence uncovered in the future to bring many to trial for war crimes. Nor is it the time to be partisan about Russia or the US.

            You are very much mistaken if you think you can take the emotion out of engaging effectively to stop further bloodshed, end this war and rebuild people’s lives

  5. Jens 5

    Morena, last night I took 3 kids to meet the next Prime Minister of NZ, they were impressed. Kids pick up on vibes, Andrew Little took the time to talk to the kids, kids felt comfortable with him straight away, he was great with them, no pretending required, wonderful human being he is.

    I’m already super impressed with Andrew, he is a incredible speaker, and a born leader, he is the next PM of NZ, and on a cold winters night in Motueka there was standing room only a wonderful turn out. He took the time to go around and talk to everyone there, not just a few words, rather he took the time because he was genuinely interested in listening to the people. Thanks for coming to Motueka Andrew Little, hope to see you here again soon, keep up the good work.

    • Puckish Rogue 5.1

      Is that you Andrew?

      • adam 5.1.1

        Sheesh Puckish I know you guys do dirty politics as modus operandi.

        But please don’t think everyone else does, it tiresome.

        • Puckish Rogue 5.1.1.1

          Not dirty politics so much as a lame attempt at humour

          • adam 5.1.1.1.1

            Epic fail then.

            Try some new lines.

            Here one for free.

            Mooning over Little in Motueka…

            That said, glad you went out and meet Andrew Little, Jens.

            I’m glad you liked him, he is a very affable chap. Shame our media can’t give him more than a 5 second sound bite most days. I think more people would warm to him if he was given even half a chance.

            You may have guessed I’m no supporter of labour, however the media have done, and continue to do a number on Little, and we should all try to redress that situation.

            • Puckish Rogue 5.1.1.1.1.1

              That’s quite good actually

            • Jens 5.1.1.1.1.2

              Public speaking around NZ would be of huge benefit to him, Winny styles, rock on up with the P&A in a public place and go for it. Andrew speaks well.

              My party vote didn’t go to Labour last election, however my person vote did, Damien O’Connor is super switched on.

              Agree with you re the media Adam

        • Paul 5.1.1.2

          Pr is tiresome. And puerile.
          End of story.

      • Ffloyd 5.1.2

        P Rogue. Your reply to Jens comment is just plain juvenile and rude.

      • Gabby 5.1.3

        Is that you Munter?

      • Jens 5.1.4

        sorries tis just me, Jens, no fluoride round these parts, it’s all good here

    • Rosie 5.2

      +1 nice one Jens 🙂

  6. Sabine 6

    opening our paua shell up for ‘commercial fishing’
    our Ministry of Primary Industry is doing good work then?

    fuck is there anything that the National Party led Government will not sell?

    • locus 6.1

      ….the truth?

    • Draco T Bastard 6.2

      No. National will sell everything and then blame the workers for the country being so poor.

    • save nz 6.3

      @Sabine, fuck is there anything that the National Party led Government will not sell?

      nope.

      Hope the don’t start on harvesting human organs for export soon.

      First MSM will have the poor little Maori kid who needs a donation.

      Then how we have so little donors in this country.

      Then how we have too many prisoners and dying WINZ and student loan debtors and we could turn a profit from it.

      Then get a report form an expert like Restock to recommend it.

      Then once the public is fully softened up, sell the contract for prisoner/debtors organs and so forth to the highest offshore bidder…

      How to make money from poverty, 101.

  7. Ad 8

    I’d encourage everyone who’s interesting in Auckland or housing to have a look at Matt’s excellent little taster over at TransportBlog on the independent panel’s version of the growth of Auckland, and how it will be accommodated:

    http://transportblog.co.nz/2016/07/28/unitary-plan-recommendations-revealed/

    New Zealand’s population is heading for 6 million in 30 years, and Auckland’s will be well into the 2 million. Regrettably, and to a degree that’s nearly unique in the world, Auckland is the biggest part of our society and economy. How this plan works really matters.

    • adam 8.1

      Silly question, historically Auckland and the Auckland region gets just over half of the country’s population. So if we move towards a figure of 6 million, would it not follow that Auckland population will probably be a city of 3 million, not 2?

      • Ad 8.1.1

        I was going by the Dept. of Statistics average growth projections for both.

        • adam 8.1.1.1

          Frightening to think Auckland will be a city of 2 million in thirty years. It’s struggling now, with the division between haves and have nots are quite stark, I can’t imagine that expanded as well, will be any good for a society.

      • Draco T Bastard 8.1.2

        Auckland City has around 1/3rd of the population. That doesn’t appear to be changing in the projections.

        The region is not the city by itself.

        • adam 8.1.2.1

          Yes, I stand corrected.

        • Wayne 8.1.2.2

          Draco,

          Actually the percentage is slowly changing. Over the last thirty years it has gone from 30% to 34%, and is headed to 40% over the next 30 years. In fact Auckland needs to be planning for 3 million people since that will happen (or close to it) in the next 30 years. The city (Pukekohe to Wellsford) is already close to 1.7 million.

          In many ways NZ will become like Queensland where the major city has nearly half the population.

          • Draco T Bastard 8.1.2.2.1

            I’d prefer it if NZ planned to develop the regions and so keep Auckland from growing so massively.

          • alwyn 8.1.2.2.2

            “like Queensland where the major city has nearly half the population.”
            Queensland has in fact the least concentrated population of the five larger (ie excluding Tasmania) Australian States..
            About 43% live in Brisbane. In NW it is around 56% and in Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia it is over 68% in each case.

    • Sanctuary 8.2

      Actually, it isn’t that unique. Lots of countries have a single dominant city. However, it is questionable if this is good for the overall country or not.

      • Ad 8.2.1

        More dominant than Paris, London, Moscow, or even Kuala Lumpur.

        Melbourne is about right as comparator but it’s a state.

      • Colonial Viper 8.2.2

        Which OECD or G20 countries have more than a third of their population in one main city?

        Apart from Singapore…

    • DoublePlusGood 8.3

      We need to cap the population of New Zealand at 5 million. We simply can’t afford to let Auckland bloat past 2 million people.

  8. dv 9

    I see that CYPS is getting a name change to Ministry for Vulnerable Children .

    Yep that will fix it!!!

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/faces-of-innocents/82526149/faces-of-innocents-cyf-to-be-shut-down-and-replaced-by-a-new-ministry

    • Sabine 9.1

      i wonder how many days of $ 2000 pay the Dame Rebstock got to charge to come up with this name.
      And who gets to define ‘vulnerable’.

    • Jones 9.2

      Just think… all that money for reorganisation, rebranding and refit… that could actually be spent on the children.

      • save nz 9.2.1

        +1 Jones. How to see a clusterfuck – rebranding exercises take place…

        • Gangnam Style 9.2.1.1

          At least the Nats will have to ‘own’ this one, no blaming Labour. (Personally I don’t see what diference a new logo will achieve).

        • Chuck 9.2.1.2

          If you think its just a rebanding exercise then its clear you have not read any detail.

          Click to access Q-and-A.pdf

          It seems the Greens and Labour broadly support the changes as well…

          “Proposed changes to Child, Youth and Family Services (CYFS) look promising, but should not overshadow that there is still an urgent funding crisis in CYFS, the Green Party said today.”

          http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO1604/S00088/cyfs-changes-should-not-overshadow-the-funding-crisis.htm

          “The independent panel tasked with overhauling our child protection agency has come up with some useful solutions, but they will only succeed if the Government pays more than lip service to early intervention.” Labour website.

          http://www.labour.org.nz/cyf_report_should_only_be_the_start_of_reforms

          “Barnardos welcomes recommendations on care of vulnerable children”

          http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO1604/S00101/recommendations-on-care-of-vulnerable-children-welcomed.htm

          “IHC is welcoming the news that children with disability will finally get equal treatment when going into out of home care.”

          • weka 9.2.1.2.1

            https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2016/jul/28/new-zealand-experts-warn-australia-data-driven-welfare-abuses-and-brutalises

            “We owe it, at least to the taxpayer, but absolutely to the people needing our help, to use every tool available to change lives,” said the deputy prime minister, Bill English, in a data conference this year. “Lives which are described by the data.”

            The New Zealand government believes that increasing use of predictive modelling techniques based on personal data from beneficiaries (incorporating data from child, youth and family payments, work and income, and the criminal justice system) will help it identify the most vulnerable in society and intervene at an earlier stage so they do not become long-term or lifetime beneficiaries.

            The government says in the four years since implementing the regime, it has saved the welfare system $12bn it would have otherwise had to spend in the future.

            This model – called “actuarial valuation” – is what the Australian government want to emulate.

            But poverty experts in New Zealand say the Australians are signing up to a system that is routinely harming, rather than helping, New Zealand’s most needy.

          • dv 9.2.1.2.2

            nope just stuff.
            i hope you are right, i don’t have a lot faith in natz planning ability.

            but we will see.

    • Muttonbird 9.3

      I see that CYPS is getting a name change to Ministry for Vulnerable Children.

      Terrible name. Reeks of Victorian despair. Sounds like something out of Dickens, it’s that dated.

      • Bob 9.3.1

        Similar to calling your political party “Labour”, it either sounds like 24 hours of excruciating pain, or being subjected to backbreaking work, either way a terrible name that is also dated.

  9. Draco T Bastard 10

    Many businesses and other groups could learn from this:

    Based on the results of this investigation, we want to be more clear about (1) how we expect people to behave, (2) where people can take complaints and problems, (3) what will happen when complaints are received.

    Putting procedures in place is more difficult for the Tor Project than for other organizations, because the staff of the Tor Project works in partnership with a broader Tor community, many of whom are volunteers or employed by other organizations. It is not a traditional top-down management environment. I am pleased, therefore, to announce that both the Tor Project and the Tor community are taking active steps to strengthen our ability to handle problems of unprofessional behavior. Specifically, the Tor Project has created an anti-harassment policy, a conflicts of interest policy, procedures for submitting complaints, and an internal complaint review process. They were recently approved by Tor’s board of directors, and they will be rolled out internally this week.

    In addition, the Tor community has created a community council to help to resolve intra- community difficulties, and it is developing membership guidelines, a code of conduct, and a social contract that affirms our shared values and the behaviors we want to model. We expect these to be finalized and approved by the community at or before our next developer meeting at the end of September.

    I believe these new policies and practices will make the Tor Project and the Tor community significantly healthier and stronger. I want to thank everyone who has contributed to the work we’ve done so far, and also to those who will contribute in the coming months.

  10. Sanctuary 11

    I am watching Paul Henry at the moment. Coming back into NZ and seeing the media here is jarring. I am not sure if people realise how much of a pro government propaganda tool the MSM is now in NZ.

    It is Alice in Wonderland stuff.

    Greens criticise state of rivers.
    National allows farmers to plunder rivers for private benefit.
    Greens criticise state of rivers.
    National indulges in tokenistic effort to clean up rivers.
    Greens criticise state of rivers.
    Media criticises Greens for criticising wonderful government initiative that addresses their criticism.

    Alice in Wonderland.

    • Rodel 11.1

      Sanctuary -28 July 2016 at 9:36 am said, “I am watching Paul Henry at the moment…”

      Why?

      • Sanctuary 11.1.1

        It happened to be on where I was staying, I only watched like ten minutes, may God have mercy on my soul.

      • adam 11.1.2

        I agree with Rodel,

        Why?

        I mean, I know sado masochism is all the rage, but Paul Henery – that just crosses the line…

    • Garibaldi 11.2

      Yes we are well aware of it and even Natrad doesn’t (can’t ?) rattle anyone’s cage sufficiently anymore. Imo this is one of the biggest problems facing us – the power of the media is immense and it is being controlled by the right. The likes of Newstalk ZB, TV3,TVNZ, in fact all of the commercial stations, and all the corporate papers are all based on planet Key. Sorry – this is in reply to Sanctuary ( 11. )

      • Rosemary McDonald 11.2.1

        Poor old Natrad….sad to see what was good journalism now having to hang on by their collective fingernails.

        However…a few much welcome giggles this am with KR’s interview with UK Correspondent Dame Anne Leslie…

        http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/ninetonoon/audio/201809961/uk-correspondent-dame-anne-leslie

        And currently, a topic dear to mine own heart,

        “11:25 Helping your child succeed at school

        Education consultant and parenting commentator Joseph Driessen talks about what parents of children who succeed at school are doing right.”

        …not available yet…but well worth a listen, and bugger me if the solutions to the problem of poor engagement with learning are completely cost free. (In dollar terms)

    • Philj 11.3

      Just returned from a week in Ozzie. The MSM media in Australia is far broader and deeper than in NZ. The difference is stark and very disappointing. We don’t know what we are missing. Our public media is disgraceful. TVNZ is a disaster and, sad to say, Radio New Zealand is on the same skids. I’ve switched off, and onto other Internet sources for quality information and news.

      • Macro 11.3.1

        ^^^^
        THIS

        So very very true. And I only watch ABC kids! NZ kids don’t know what they are missing.

      • Draco T Bastard 11.3.2

        It is another failure of the neo-liberal paradigm where it’s all about ratings, entertainment and profits rather than informing people.

        I do wonder if the percentage of the population that actually watches TV or listens to the radio is dropping. I know I don’t and I know that several others that read this forum don’t either.

  11. Skinny 12

    Natcorp leader John Key needs to do the honourable thing and resign if the TPPA he undemocratically pushed so strongly upon us is rejected by the American’s.

    • srylands 12.1

      Why?

      • Puckish Rogue 12.1.1

        Because its the only way the left will beat John Key?

      • Chris 12.1.2

        Because John Key has wrecked the lives of hundreds of thousands of New Zealanders therefore if he fucked off it would be good thing regardless of any other reason?

        • Chris 12.1.2.1

          Sorry to burst your bubble, leftie, but I don’t love John Key and I’m not a John Key or National supporter and I in fact despise the guy, his politics and everything he represents. I do see, however, how you could’ve thought otherwise.

    • save nz 12.2

      +1 Skinny – only JK needs removal for lying an cheating too as well as selling us out.

  12. Skinny 13

    Natcorp leader John Key needs to do the honourable thing and resign if the TPPA he pushed so strongly is rejected by the American’s.

  13. weka 14

    Testing the establishment.

    • weka 14.1

      pretty sure that that went into moderation but got releaseed quickly, but the asterisked one below didn’t, so just testing again.

      Testing the establishment.

  14. weka 15

    Testing the est*blishment.

  15. Chooky 16

    Silly naive Angela Merkel. She imposed refugees on Europe ( a Trojan Horse?) …and she didnt question the causes of the mass refugee crisis and demand justice for the refugees and their rights to be returned safely to their own countries, which have been ravaged by war… because she supports NATO and the USA ( who bombed the shit out of Iraq, Libya, and wants to get rid of Assad?..who created the vacuum for Isis?…and who has designs on destabilising Iran and Russia?)

    ‘Merkel’s open-border policies are destroying Europe’ – Willy Wimmer’

    https://www.rt.com/op-edge/353568-france-germany-terror-attacks-wimmer/

    • Puckish Rogue 16.1

      The good thing about NZ is that we can see what’s happening in Europe and we can learn from their mistakes

      Whether we do is another matter entirely

      • Draco T Bastard 16.1.1

        Well, this government certainly seems to be determined not to learn as it ties us ever more closely to the foreign policy of the US.

      • Paul 16.1.2

        You are aware this government is slavishly copying the errors of neoliberalism, an ideology that has ruined the US and the UK’s citizens.
        Instead of looking to the Icelandic model or the Finnish model or the Danish model.
        But you know that.
        And still support this incompetent, corrupt client regime of banker Key.
        Shame.

    • Colonial Viper 16.2

      The German 1% wanted cheap non-unionised workers. Now they have them.

      • Chooky 16.2.1

        yes but at what price?…time will tell at what ‘cost’ to society

        • Colonial Viper 16.2.1.1

          As is usual the 1% doesn’t care about the costs, which they will promptly dump on to the rest of society while they scoop off the benefits all for themselves.

  16. whispering kate 17

    Listening to Susie Ferguson having a go at Andrew Little this morning on RNZ at being at odds with the Greens and their statement of lowering the house prices. She was obviously and determined to undermine and try to drive a wedge between Labour and the Greens at not being on the same page together. I thought what a bloody nerve, National are forever bringing up new ideas on the hoof where one Cabinet Minister doesn’t know one thing from the other Cabinet Minister and are not keeping themselves informed and “being on the same page”. Paula Benefit for one with her shifting and changing trying to get people out of Auckland or back again – whatever day she seems fit to pontificate on. The Minister of Everything is another with his chucking goodies to Northland left, right and centre without a thought of what he was doing. At least Labour and the Greens are separate parties and are entitled to have their differences.

    If RNZ’s morning crew expended as much energy being fair to all parties it would be easier on the ears for everybody – its so darned obvious even a baboon would be able to see through it. Andrew Little should have just told her to shut her gob and give him a chance to speak and repeat what the Gov. says all the time – “well the government in power does it, why don’t you have a go at them as well about it”. Fat chance of that, he is too good mannered for that.

    • Colonial Viper 17.1

      LAB/GR need to be showing off their new teamwork and co-ordination to the electorate.

      Especially as the wedge driving has only started. Wait until 2017. National will have a tonne of wood wedges handy and a lot of sledge hammers to bang them in with.

      • weka 17.1.1

        Handled badly on both sides I think. The Greens for not giving Labour a headsup, Labour for Little slagging off the GP policy esp without understanding what it is.

        Neither of those things were necessary.

    • Garibaldi 17.2

      Winston seems to be the only one ( I won’t call him “opposition” because you can’t tell with him) who does not let the interviewer derail what he wants to say. Time and again “our lot ” let the interviewer walk all over them . Why ? Is it just lack of media training ? I think it’s more than that. There just doesn’t seem to be anyone on the left in NZ who can handle the media.

    • Paul 17.3

      Suzie Ferguson.
      Just another spokesperson for the establishment.
      The liberal chattering class have failed society.
      Chris Hedges.

    • Anne 17.4

      I agree whispering kate. Andrew Little is too polite sometimes. He endeavours to get his point across politely then when the interviewer intervenes he gets flustered and starts repeating himself which only makes it look like he’s trying to spin a lie.

      I’ve said it a hundred times and I still say it. He needs more media training.

    • Gabby 17.5

      Hopefully Andrew mentioned all that stuff. It would be a shame if he sat there spluttering.

  17. Rosemary McDonald 18

    Natrad also expands on the unaffordable feminine hygiene products story…

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/309591/girls-using-'telephone-books,-rags'-as-sanitary-products

    with pictures…..

    (Wriggling around in the further recesses of my memory banks is a campaign from the early seventies for some sort of price relief on moisturisers and sunscreens. The argument was that the NZ climate was cruel on skin (and this was before melanoma became an issue) and there should be cheaper and more effective products available.)

    • Chris 18.1

      And when Bennett was social welfare minister she lambasted claims that hygiene products couldn’t be purchased at the supermarket using a special needs grant for food. Her comments were made after an overzealous checkout operator refused to sell a packet of pads because they were going to be paid for using an SNG voucher. The only things that couldn’t be bought were alcohol and tobacco but the checkout operator decided to add hygiene products. Bennett waded in and said that wasn’t right.

      Well, since then, the social security tribunal has changed that again by saying people cannot get hygiene products using the food SNG, nor soap or shampoo or any kind of personal or cleaning products. What’s interesting is that Work and Income defended the appeal despite their minister saying that people could use the SNG for this purpose.

      • Rosemary McDonald 18.1.1

        I would dearly love to see a link to this….not that I don’t believe you….but it should be on the record somewhere.

        Are there media articles or any other documentation?

        (Because it is exactly this sort of bizarre shit that disappears…poof! Gone! Never happened!)

        ((And quick….because They will get in first…suggest you do a quick copy and paste into a word doc if you can;t easily download a file.)

        Regards, the othertinfoilhatwearer. 😉

        • Chris 18.1.1.1

          http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11110932

          Will try to track down the tribunal decision that contradicts what Bennett said. It’s appalling that Work and Income let it go to the tribunal in the first place if its position really was as Bennett said.

          • Rosemary McDonald 18.1.1.1.1

            “Ms Thompson said another woman tried to use a Winz supermarket card at the check-out at her local supermarket, and the card didn’t work.

            “The cashier called Winz to find out why the card wouldn’t work, and found out it was because she had tampons amongst the items she was purchasing. She had to return them.””

            So…not just at the discretion of the checkout operator….actually built into the system.

            Bennett was bullshitting.

            • Chris 18.1.1.1.1.1

              Especially when special needs grants come under a programme the minister has direct control over. Bennett says sanitary items can be bought with a grant issued to purchase items from a supermarket, and then when a beneficiary appeals a decision that’s inconsistent with what she says her ministry defends it all the way to the tribunal. Bennett’s a piece of work at the best of times. I’m still totally flabbergasted that she thinks it’s okay to put the poorest of people into $80,000+ of debt to meet the cost of emergency housing simply because “they signed up for it”.

              • Rosemary McDonald

                “I’m still totally flabbergasted that she thinks it’s okay to put the poorest of people into $80,000+ of debt to meet the cost of emergency housing …”

                In her world, ’emergency housing’ could also mean a cardboard carton in the park, or under a bridge, or perhaps in a (usually) dry stormwater pipe. Or a vehicle.

                No sign up required.

                It’s all about choice.

                • Chris

                  The Auckland Action Against Poverty group in Auckland said they were challenging those debts. I hope they’re successful. It beggars belief that people can end up with that kind of debt via simple operation of legislation that’s meant to help our poorest. It beggars fucking belief.

                  • Rosemary McDonald

                    “It beggars fucking belief.”

                    Don’t try to understand it….your brain will turn inside out.

                    • Chris

                      What’s equally distressing is that nobody’s that up in arms about it at all. It’s as close to the crime of the century as you’ll get but nobody seems to give a stuff.

  18. Chris 19

    This film is amazing. A mirror image of what happens here in NZ.

    In addition to this, what’s alarming in NZ is the current trend of shifting rules around how and when people qualify for social security into regulations. This has the effect of removing the necessary legal flexibility that allows need to be met regardless of differences in circumstances. The nature of regulations means that if circumstances don’t fit neatly into the tightly prescribed rules then it’s quite legal for Work and Income to say no. This is the main thrust behind the rewrite Bill currently before Parliament. The government says it’s about tidying up existing complexity etc and that there’s no major change but that’s a load of shite. The Bill is in effect another benefit cut – not necessarily by way of reducing rates but by giving the executive branch of government the ability to make binding regulations that make it legal to refuse people help. Labour began the trend when it axed the special benefit in 2004 and replaced it with the temporary additional support benefit, and then again in 2007 by introducing the ability to make regulations that overrode the statutory definition of income. This latest rewrite Bill takes the concept to dangerously new heights. Work and Income staff won’t be required to treat people badly in order to deny issuing help. They’ll be able to say no ever so politely and with a clear conscience because the law won’t allow any alternative.

    • Rosie 19.1

      Yes, I’ve seen the trailers and felt sad and angry. I think it’s on at NZIFF at the moment. Just viewing the trailers previously, it’s apparent at how NZ’s welfare rules are blending with the UK’s. It’s really quite sinister.

      Watched “Where To Invade Next” by Michael Moore the other night. It’s mainly a comparison of a sample of how European states educational, health, and justice systems work compared to USA. A good Vs bad sort of comparison, very simple but there is an important message. One feeling I took away was a sense of growing alarm at how far we have come from our own equitable roots and have marooned ourselves in some vast ocean with no horizon, gradually floating towards the USA.

      To me, it says alot about what we have allowed to happen to our society.

      • Paul 19.1.1

        There is also a French film called Tomorrow that offers future solutions to the present economic structure to save our society and our planet.
        Models to learn from were Finland ( education) , Iceland ( people’s democracy, France ( permaculture) , Bristol, England ( money system ), San Francisco ( waste), Copenhagen ( city design and transport), France ( a new industrial structure)
        amongst other inspirational models.
        Watch it when it comes to Wellington.

    • Paul 19.2

      I’ve seen this film.
      It is brilliant.
      Bennett, Smith, Key and company are ruthless ******** to allow WINZ to be a carbon copy of the UK model.

  19. joe90 20

    Yeah, he really does care.
    /

    Donald Trump has made restoring American jobs a centerpiece of his campaign, a pledge he reiterated last week when he accepted the Republican nomination for president: “I’m going to bring our jobs back to Ohio and Pennsylvania and New York and Michigan and all of America,” he said.

    This month, Trump is bringing jobs to Florida, as he looks to hire 78 servers, housekeepers, and cooks at his Mar-a-Lago Club in Palm Beach and the nearby Trump National Golf Club, Jupiter.

    https://www.buzzfeed.com/jessicagarrison/trump-seeks-more-foreign-guestworkers-for-his-companies

  20. Of course! That’s why I included the links to the two party’s policies. I thought it would be good for the facts to speak for themselves. Great post, weka.

    • weka 21.1

      Don’t start with me either TRP, I’m not in the mood. I know how both you and CV get into these arguments and your reasonable on the surface comment is classic entry point.

      • te reo putake 21.1.1

        Whatev’s. You’re in the mood to criticise me, but when I accept with good grace your position on this post, you go off on one. Lighten up.

        [Banned permanently from this post for telling an author what to do, and picking a fight when already asked not to. I’m making note of the gas lighting too. Subthread moved to Open Mike – weka]

        • Chooky 21.1.1.1

          lol…the giants fight

          • Morrissey 21.1.1.1.1

            LOL! It’s like watching two mastodons bellowing at each other across the primeval swamp.

            Go Te Reo! No, no, get ‘im, weka!!!! How THRILLING this is!

            • Chooky 21.1.1.1.1.1

              lol…can we have a video clip of a mud wrestling fight?…i bet weka would get a lot of fast pecks in and TRP would wallow around like a baby and splutter and shout

              [lprent: Or I could just give my impression of a 5kg troll crushing hammer. Of course I’d need someone to use it on.. ]

        • Chris 21.1.1.2

          You could ban TRP permanently from the site for being a NZ First supporter?

          [Bill has set the ban length for telling lies about an author at 6 weeks. Only warning. TRP]

          • Bill 21.1.1.2.1

            No. I didn’t ‘set’ any ban length. I banned someone for six weeks and explained why I was banning them. That ban could have been for one week. It could also have been for six months. In the event, it was six weeks – a fairly arbitrary decision.

  21. Draco T Bastard 22

    The Power of “Nyet”

    It is a hopeful sign that people throughout the Washington-dominated world are discovering the power of “nyet.” The establishment may still look spiffy on the outside, but under the shiny new paint there hides a rotten hull, with water coming in though every open seam. A sufficiently resounding “nyet” will probably be enough to cause it to founder, suddenly making room for some very necessary changes. When that happens, please remember to thank Russia… or, if you insist, Putin.

    I’m reasonably certain that Trump will win the US presidential election. This will be a disaster in many ways for the world but I think it will also do some good as it will expose the complete failure and corruption of our Western systems. IMO, it will be the final nail in the coffin of capitalism.

  22. North 24

    Is there anyone else who’s getting fucked off with TS being the playground/battleground of a few likely suspects ? Comment after comment after comment all about them. Which is so childish and John Key.

    Clever, erudite, no-ones’ fool, wah wah wah, but Jesus! they love fucking Donald Trump. I just don’t know……

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