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Open mike 28/08/2011

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, August 28th, 2011 - 66 comments
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66 comments on “Open mike 28/08/2011”

  1. just saying 1

    I wonder if it would be possible to get a petition going to have the ‘Left Leaning’ column, which ostensibly provides one of the few spaces for the voices of the left in our largely right-leaning media, to be written by someone who is, I dunno, a bit left? Even centre would be a step in the left direction.

    In this particularly appalling piece, http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/blogs/john-pagani-left-leaning/5511201/Heres-how-we-stop-our-kids-being-bashed Pagani links to an even more appalling item written by Tony Blair, http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/aug/20/tony-blair-riots-crime-family which he says he found “moving”.

    On a positive note: http://www.nzherald.co.nz/opinion/news/article.cfm?c_id=466&objectid=10747833

  2. Here’s what I think would be a realistic outcome from the election with a good balance of power that reflects the current state of politics.

    National 56
    UnitedFuture 6
    Maori Party 4
    Act 4

    Labour 40
    Greens 10
    Mana 1

    Explained more: Election Predictions

    • But Pete you won’t even declare who you are going to vote for.  Why should we place credence in your views?

      And ACT 4 ups but Mana only one?  Is this a sign of right wing bias? 

      • Pete George 2.1.1

        It’s got nothing to do with left right anything, I’d be quite happy with Act 1, Mana 1.

        I rate Act 0-5 depending on Epsom and how much party vote they get.

        Mana are a probably going to get one, ok, they could pick up one or two more on party vote but that would be at the expense of Labour.

        Just listening to Sepuloni, I wish she wouldn’t talk in election slogans.

        • kriswgtn 2.1.1.1

          United Future 6??

          hahha comedy central

        • mickysavage 2.1.1.2

          So let’s all play pull figures out of our arse.

          And by no means should we discuss anything meaningful, like the country’s problems and what to do about them.

          • Pete George 2.1.1.2.1

            One way of dealing with problems is to get into government, but that’s not all I’m doing, I work off the net as well.

            Today I’m also working on doing something about problems, like NARK, Child Matters, and here’s a really neat thing that I’m helping promote at the moment: chatbus.org.nz

    • Lanthanide 2.2

      I’d prefer if UF got 6 seats at the expense of National and Act too.

      No doubt you want this outcome as well so you can swan off to Wellington and suck up the nice salary and pension scheme.

      Unfortunately for you, they’re not likely to get more than 2 seats, and only then if Dunne can take his seat which isn’t exactly the safest in the country.

    • Tiger Mountain 2.3

      Often on the net you see unwarranted ‘LOL’s but today I actually Laughed Out Loud after reading tory Pete’s mirthful post-UF 6? Harr effin harr!

    • locus 2.4

      only just read this UF6 – lol – hahahahaha

  3. Gawd on Q&A they have three right wingers, Tamihere, Phil O’Reilly, and some woman who thinks the Spirit Level has been discredited, discussing the book.  O’Reilly thinks that not growing “is just madness”.  And Holmes admitted he diid not understand an interview with one of the authors of the book.

    Where is the balance? 

    • Colonial Viper 3.1

      although we don’t really need the MSM’s facile version of ‘balance’…we need critical discussion and a media able to use facts and figures to force people to move on from their little PR platitudes.

    • neoleftie 3.2

      MS – surely in a global sense with more and more countries and modern type consumers coming onstream there must be net global growth to cater for the increased number who demand consumerables. More connected countries means more efficiencies in resource utilisation surely.
      Do we as a global connected society simple say too the rest i.e africa, etc too late, you missed the boat but we’ll take your resources though.

      Now good points from Q+A
      – discource on envirnomental impact and increased awareness and contribution from agri sector.
      – need for a socital discusion around social inequality and at what slope do we ‘float the boats’.
      -good imput on crime and how to lessen impact on society and police resources.

      • Colonial Viper 3.2.1

        MS – surely in a global sense with more and more countries and modern type consumers coming onstream there must be net global growth to cater for the increased number who demand consumerables.

        Orlov put it very well: Mother Nature does not change its behaviour due to price signals.

        There will be no more global net growth because the physical world system cannot support exponential growth any longer. And our financial system cannot support exponential growth (of debt) any longer.

        And the main constraint: cheap oil. There is virtually none left.

        • neoleftie 3.2.1.1

          yes CV i agree totally peak oil, lack of eco stability etc etc…There must and will be a shift from oil for energy to oil for consumerables only at some point but limiting factors are availability of govt cash reserves and willpower (both in very short supply ). I wonder if the extreme right ,who can read the same signals as the left, havent a plan for after as well. Use cheap energy and resources and then via science / techno use their system liquidity and cash in / control the next phase of development.
          I see two paths – social democratic slow adaption to the next growth/ developement phase via govt control and constructs or a sole bought out /leveraged mega-private sector society without any public controls or direction at all.

          • aerobubble 3.2.1.1.1

            The societial arrangement surely isn’t all that relevant, its the one we choose.
            Centralizers want to control resources, but its turning out that the solutions
            to our world crisises, food, population, climate, resources, energy, is more
            ant like. The ‘central’ of an ant colony is a egg producer, nothing more
            nothing less. Government in the new networked local centric world will\
            not be the centre. So you could be right, depending on who you ask
            the world could look owned by mega-private ‘queens’ yet still be slowly
            adapt to the next growth phase. The right could be right, government is
            the problem, and the left could be right that businesses are not the engine
            of society. That when we all conform our behavior – think local act
            globally – then we will survive. Think of it like this, why do you
            drive within the white lines. Well the council makes the best road
            in between the lines. The lines aren’t there to contain you, its your
            choice to stay within the lines, its in your interest since others
            stay on the other side of the line and so you gain safety by
            staying within the line. This is when government should be,
            drawing lines, measuring if they work, and keeping us from harming
            ourselves and prospering. But government does not do this anymore,
            the right believe its their right to get very very rich and exploit,
            the left believe its there right to decide what society should look like,
            what we need is neither the right or the left, we need to trust people
            and provide the people networks to faciliate their personal growth,
            and everything will come right again. We just have too many sociopathic
            control narcissists in power and in the media, and we will all pay
            dearly for their needy attention disorders. clip of Key dressed in drag
            at a gay festival.

      • Draco T Bastard 3.2.2

        Do we as a global connected society simple say too the rest i.e africa, etc too late, you missed the boat but we’ll take your resources though.

        That’s what we’ve been telling them since colonisation a few hundred years ago.

        • neoleftie 3.2.2.1

          yes but each region or country is on its own economic pathway with its own pace of economic evolution. stability, security and consumerism would appear to be necessary factor that allow for a sucessful adoption into the western paradym…oh and the McDonalds too.
          We all know the rational for USA etc to support or invade non connected or misaligned strategic countries such as iraq…and dictate to other countries adherance to internation regs that allow free trade or movment of capital.
          We IMO need every country connected and functioning so we can face the challenges ahead over the next 50-100 years.

          The only viable long term solution is a ‘next way’ economic system that will manage the transition from a Neolib / Socialist matrix flipflop to a more balanced, globally connected social democratic govt where we still have room for capital investment in a limited private sector.
          My thoughts would see the rise of workplace co-ops ( as the new work unions ) expanded SOE / Public sector sphere that provide control / influence on wages and worker condition ( the expanded public sector would provide a balance to the private sector ). Erodicate the concept of traditional model of ownership of housing and control the price of land as this cause market created bubbles and artifical instabilities.
          Why not a complex ‘rent to own’ scheme where need is meet by the state…The real nominal cost of a new average house build is far far lower than present values.

          At present our economic system is chaotic, full of contridiction, lack of coordination and simply inefficient in a holistc sense. resources are being misused and wasted.
          What right does 1500 billionaire individuals have to live a utopian dream when the billions upon billions of the global population starve or eck out a miserable existance?

          • Draco T Bastard 3.2.2.1.1

            …limited private sector.

            There is no such thing as a private sector or, for that matter, a government sector – there is only society.

            At present our economic system is chaotic, full of contridiction, lack of coordination and simply inefficient in a holistc sense. resources are being misused and wasted.

            Yep, there is a massive misallocation of the worlds resources caused by the capitalist paradigm.

    • I can’t remember the name of the woman either but ….OMG!
      Our binge drinking culture is a product of children coming home and watching Home and Away where people meet at the local bar for drinks?
      That’s it! Pissed teens are gathering on the North Shore for riotous parties because they saw it on Home and Away! Well, that’s easily solved.
      Let’s axe Home and Away and replace with something safer….like Cheers.
       
      BTW…..there is no bar on Home and Away!

    • Purplescottie 3.4

      Going by the discussion of The Spirit Level, I don’t think any of them had read the book.
      Their problems with the theory had been covered and refuted in the book.

      • aerobubble 3.4.1

        They were not even listening, the prof said inequality measure was a flag indicating
        poor economic outcomes for rich and poor. Rich parent are just as likely too be
        uneducated enough to stop their kids getting immunized, for example.

        But the ost conceited media was laid law on entrepreneurs, that was a shocker
        for myopia.

    • neoleftie 3.5

      inerestingly the balance is alreay presnt at grassroot levels…’the spirit level’ and its insight are being discussed at various levels or sectors such as in ECE.

  4. tc 4

    Q&A is another soapbox to ensure Ellis pockets a circa million p.a. Package from his nat mates and masters.
    due to a lack of a public broadcaster providing balance and objectivity we get this one sided approach…..look across the Tasman where ABC and SBS set a bar the others follow or just don’t get watched when it matters.
    They enjoy jumps in ratings when major events occur as people know they can be trusted….whereas here it’s reality tv and jokers like Holmes, Espiner, garner and associated sycophants.

  5. randal 5

    I dont know about the rest of the country but round here the Labour Party candidate and his team have been working away for over a year and I think they have avery good chance of toppling the incumbent National party and dispatching them with a very healthy majority for Labour. Locally Labour is seen as the can do party and the chances are looking better every day.

    • kriswgtn 5.1

      Totally
      I met the new MP for Otaki 3 weeks ago
      Primo guy
      Had good 30 mins talking with him

      and he said from his meeting people in Levin- it highly likely Guy will lose his seat
      made my day

  6. KJT 6

    Spotted in the Herald comments.

    “Yes you’re right. There is this famous exchange at the G* a year or so back between Gordon Brown and Angela Merkel where Brown asks why Germany weathered the GFC so well and Britain had just plummeted into debt. Merkel answered “Because Germany still makes things Mr Brown!””

  7. Anne 7

    Anyone noticed that Labour’s blog site ‘Red Alert’ is being rapidly taken over by trained trollers whose brief is to undermine the site’s owners and supporters? These individuals seem to work in loose groups, and bully their victims with repetitive criticisms and insults. I put much of the blame on the timidity of the MP owners who talk about the problem, but seem unwilling to take positive action to get rid of them. Genuine critics are welcome and make for healthy debate, but these narcisstic nasties are anything but genuine.

    All I can say is: it will be to the site’s detriment, because soon there will be nobody of worth bothering to comment there – which I guess is the ultimate aim of the NAct campaign.

    • wtl 7.1

      Haven’t properly visited for awhile, but always thought that ‘Red Alert’ would be a prime target for attack by trolls, whether coordinated by spin merchants or just a bunch of losers with an axe to grind. I think it was always going to happen sooner or later unless they switched comments off or engaged in very strict moderation.

      • Anne 7.1.1

        always thought that ‘Red Alert’ would be a prime target for attack by trolls, whether coordinated by spin merchants or just a bunch of losers with an axe to grind

        There’s both. It’s easy to tell which is which. The ‘losers’ are one man bands and, as you say, they have a bee in their bonnet. The professional spin merchants repeatedly attack the authors and commenters until – particularly in the case of commenters – they fall silent presumably cowered. Their lines are just too pat to be random.

        • Anne 7.1.1.1

          in the case of commenters – they fall silent presumably cowered.

          err… in the case of some commenters- not all.

          • chris73 7.1.1.1.1

            Or maybe the arguements presented are piss-weak and easily countered…

            But at least you’ve still got your true believers like spud 🙂

            • Anne 7.1.1.1.1.1

              He’s alright chris 73. I enjoy his witty one liners. Although even Spuddy boy has been silenced a bit of late…

              • chris73

                I’m sorry but did you mention spud and witty one liners in the same breath?

                Seriously though any swing voter that goes onto red alert and reads his comments are likely to think hes a bit…(not sure how to say this without insulting anyone) simple

                • Anne

                  I was responding to your comment in friendly jest. Spud his who he is. He’s of Pacific Island extraction and it’s part of his personality. He may like to use seemingly simple minded one liners much of the time but he isn’t simple, and contributes pertinent observations when he want to. Cmon chris73, live and let live.

                • KJT

                  You havn’t spent much time reading Kiwibog.

                  Don’t blame you though. You leave feeling soiled.

    • thejackal 7.2

      NRT has removed the comments feature without much trouble. Personally I think having a forum for people to directly communicate with their representatives is a good idea. The trolls be damned!

    • Draco T Bastard 7.3

      Didn’t Clare mention that she was going get rid of the trolls?

      • Anne 7.3.1

        They got rid of one and have threatened (too timidly in my view) to moderate or ban a few others but that’s all. They need a lesson or two from lPrent.

        • chris73 7.3.1.1

          The problem is that a troll is a subjective term and if you’re going to start banning right-wing trolls will you then ban the left-wing trolls as well?

          • Anne 7.3.1.1.1

            I have a recollection RA did ban one insufferably rude leftie not too long ago. Can’t remember is blogging name.

          • lprent 7.3.1.1.2

            We have done it a number of times, booting people from all sides when required. There is a definite bias against rwnj’s. But I suspect that most of that is because the nj’s of other persuasions tend to value having the site available more – they amend their behavior when warned.

            But we look much more at behavior rather than peoples philosophy. The underlying criteria is the good of the site as expressed in the about. You don’t do that by supression of alternate ideas. You do it by removing people who are incapable of arguing and have the flexibility of a badly programmed robot.

            The fastest way to find out if someone is capable of learning is to stress them at a personal level. Personally I have decades of experience at how to do it, and query level access to a rather large database of whatever is said here makes it a hell of a lot easier. That is why I will sometimes start to torment people – I want to find out is they are merely automata.

            All that being said, I have one major advantage at moderating on a site like this. I simply do not care about what others think about me. I am not a politician nor anything more than a member of a political party. The things that I consider as being crucially important questions are not those discussed here.

            My involvement in the political sphere because of a sense of duty in constraining the ability of political people from screwing up too badly. Having open and public forums is a effective way to do it.

            Getting back to Annes point about team trolling – I just don’t tolerate it. To me it is just evidence of a berserk reproducing virus type program, and programmers hate CPU gobblers like that. People will operate as individuals here if theydo not want to attract my attention.

            • chris73 7.3.1.1.2.1

              Well thats what I mean, this site doesn’t allow it and red alert doesn’t allow it yet it seems to me that red alert is far more “trigger-happy” when it comes to banning people for being trolls

              Maybe they’re a tad more… precious

              • lprent

                Getting the right balance is far more of an art than a science and it depends on how far the local comment culture is from what is wanted.

                I was a *lot* more trigger happy when I was changing pattern of the comment culture here. But we’re also far more sadistic than a politician can be seen to be. That gives us far more options about how to modify behavior. We can do other things rather than banning, and those are frequently a damn sight worse.

  8. Like the climate change deniers who spend vast sums to discredit the convincing science that supports it, there is an equivalent reaction to Wilkinson and Pickett’s research on income inequality. The panel on Q&A were very dismissive of The Spirit Level based on the interview with Richard Wilkinson but I wonder how many of them actually read the book and the data that supported it.
    http://localbodies-bsprout.blogspot.com/2011/08/spirit-level-deserves-attention.html

  9. randal 9

    anne..red alert red alert..bandits at 12 o’clock.

  10. thejackal 10

    Super Fund Invests in Nuclear Weapons

    Last Wednesday it was revealed that the New Zealand superannuation fund holds 44,595 shares worth $2,082,736 in a Mumbai-based multinational company called Larsen and Toubro, which in partnership with the Indian Navy, is involved in designing and manufacture a fleet of nuclear-armed submarines for India. But that’s not all Larsen & Toubro (L&T) India’s largest engineering group gets up to…

    • Vicky32 10.1

      Last Wednesday it was revealed that the New Zealand superannuation fund holds 44,595 shares worth $2,082,736 in a Mumbai-based multinational company called Larsen and Toubro, which in partnership with the Indian Navy, is involved in designing and manufacture a fleet of nuclear-armed submarines for India. But that’s not all Larsen & Toubro (L&T) India’s largest engineering group gets up to…

      Shocking…

  11. marsman 11

    “THE HOLLOW MEN” the film, is on Maori channel tonight at 8.30 pm. Very pertinent especially now, the main players are still getting away with their shady, self-serving scams.

  12. aerobubble 12

    NZ loves to grow weeds! Evn when it finds a king crop, milk, it puts its whole weight
    behind it and leaves a bit pile of cow shit floating down the water ways. Its always
    so black and white. NZ needs to diversify, so that means we should ignore the
    problem with all the weedy companies we have now, throw money at new start ups
    with a now discreited consumer paradigm. Oh, what insipidness. Any farmer
    does better with what he has, and that’s why we spend so much time with
    jingoistic business mantras about new innovation. We need to seize the new
    world economic reality, local, networked, low energy (or high energy where
    its cheap – i.e. Here IN nz), but no with new roads, and less education we
    are going to drive ourselves into a new growth phase.

  13. felix 13

    ACT has released a list of rich white men from Auckland: http://www.act.org.nz/news/act-releases-its-party-list-for-2011-general-election

    Bit surprised to see Meth-Whore Barbie missed out. When I saw her on telly screaming about how she hates animals I thought she’d be fighting off the party list offers with a shitty stick.

  14. uke 14

    Incredible, this is currently one of the top headlines on NACT PR webs—… er, sorry, Stuff:



    Peter Jackson heads John Key on Googled list
     

    John Key is one of our most popular prime ministers ever. It seems nothing Labour throws at him can stick. But even he can’t beat Peter Jackson when it comes to the popularity contest that is Google.

    Figures show that in the last three years Key was well above Goff in terms of Google searches by name.

    • Campbell Larsen 14.1

      Hah, he was searched because people didn’t know who this Prime Mincer of newsland, robber baron, cheap wannabe comedian, agent of the NWO, buddy of Obama, John ‘Keys’ really is….

      It was most probably people looking for overweight camp male catwalk models, with a greedy streak and an overinflated sense of self worth coupled with a deep and insatiable need for recognition and public affirmation – I’ve heard that that particular combo is harder to find and more popular than you would think.

      For all you people with fingers poised above the search keys – you don’t need google to find out what this prick is like – just come to New Zealand, swim in our rivers of effluent and see the faces of the people whose lives he has touched (hint: you won’t see them at the RWC – begging is to be made an offense just in time for the big game)

  15. Jum 15

    The Hollow Men is on Maori TV tonight at 8.30. Watch it and weep for our future.

    Thanks Maori TV for screening it.

    • R 15.1

      …and thanks Jum for highlighting the fact it was on. I am glad not to have missed it, I don’t usually watch TV so thanks for the heads-up (and I know I should have seen it back then, but they were on their way out back then). Very timely to see the young Key so enthusiastically lying, and to observe the groups formed during the Brash/English takeover.

      concur, thanks Maori TV. I really hope others watched, especially blind Key-followers.

  16. Georgecom 16

    Congratulations to Hillary Calvert for being, er, dropped from the ACT party list. Don Brash richly rewarded Clavert for her support during his putsch by cutting her out of the top 10 on the ACT list. Doesn’t say much for Brash and his commitment to reward loyalty. His purchase of the ACT Party was bad enough however, sorry Hillary, his project for take over of the party and stacking it with his mates is total. If that means you are a casualty then that is expedient for Brash.

    And the ACT Party, man, you have to be white male and old to be at the top. Anyone not old, male and white need not apply. “Young” Don Nicholson is the youthful face of ACT. The only other party with such a similar homogeneous list of candidates is the Maroi Party and they are clear about who their support base is and even they have women at the top.

  17. Draco T Bastard 17

    What’s in a Domain Name?

    Handling the profusion of names and TLDs is a relatively simple problem for a computer, even though it will require extra work to redirect hundreds of new names (when someone types them in) back to the same old Web site. It will also create lots of work for lawyers, marketers of search-engine optimization, registries, and registrars.

    All of this will create jobs, but little extra value. To me, useless jobs are, well, useless. And, while redundant domain names are not evil, I do think that they are a waste of resources.

    Don’t you just love the competitive free-market? It keeps costing more and more and more.

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    Imagination By-Pass: Had the Communications Minister, Kris Faafoi (above) taken a firm stand with Bauer, reminding them of their obligations to both their staff and the wider New Zealand public, then a much more favourable outcome may well have ensued. He should have made it clear to the Bauer board ...
    3 days ago
  • Simon Bridges can’t connect
    We all know that Simon Bridges has, at the best of times, an intermittent relationship with the truth. However you would think that during a pandemic and economic crisis the current opposition leader would pull his head in and start to do the right thing.Obviously leading by example should be ...
    3 days ago
  • Anti-fluoridation propaganda now relies on only four studies. 3: Riddell et al (2019)
    Connett promotes Riddell et al (2019) as one of the only four studies one needs to read about fluoridation. But he misunderstands and misrepresents the findings of this study. Image credit: Fluoride Action ...
    3 days ago
  • Could the Atlantic Overturning Circulation ‘shut down’?
    This is a re-post from Carbon Brief by Dr. Richard Wood and Dr. Laura Jackson Generally, we think of climate change as a gradual process: the more greenhouse gases that humans emit, the more the climate will change. But are there any “points of no return” that commit us to irreversible ...
    3 days ago
  • The biggest challenge for a generation ahead – covid-19. Defeat and Recovery
    Last month I wrote my blog on covid-19 pointing out the in our pre Alert Level 4 days that a subject no one had heard here months ago was now dominating the media. An amazing feature of this crisis is how quickly it has swept every other issue aside worldwide. ...
    PunditBy Wyatt Creech
    3 days ago
  • Testing for COVID-19 in NZ to Achieve the Elimination Goal
    Nick Wilson,1 Ayesha Verrall,1,2 Len Cook,3 Alistair Gray,3 Amanda Kvalsvig,1 Michael Baker,1 (1epidemiologists, 2infectious disease physician, 3statisticians) In this blog, we raise ideas for how New Zealand might optimise testing to both identify cases in the community as part of the COVID-19 elimination strategy, and to confirm when the virus ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    3 days ago
  • Should we all be wearing face masks to prevent Covid-19 spread?
    Maybe you’ve seen the graph that says those countries where everyone wears a mask are the ones that have managed to keep Covid-19 under control? The first thing to say about that claim is that those countries also did lots of other things, too – they acted fast, with intense ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    4 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #14
    Story of the Week... Editorial of the Week... Toon of the Week... Coming Soon on SkS... Climate Feedback Claim Review... SkS Week in Review... Poster of the Week... Story of the Week... North Atlantic's capacity to absorb CO2 overestimated, study suggests Research into ocean’s plankton likely to lead to ...
    4 days ago
  • The Americans are trying to kill us all again
    The Treaty on Open Skies is one of the most effective mechanisms for preventing war curently in force. By letting countries make surveillance flights over each others' territory, it eliminates fears that they are secretly preparing for war. So naturally, the US is planning to withdraw from it: The Trump ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 11
    . . April 5: Day eleven of living in lock-down… My one day of rest for the week, and an opportunity to mow my lawns – which I’d been delaying for about three weeks. (On the plus side, the damp micro-climate in my back yard yielded three lovely fresh mushrooms ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    4 days ago
  • Now we know what the rules are
    As the lockdown has gone on, disquiet about what the rules were and the police's enforcement of them has grown. On Friday, Police admitted that they were abusing routine traffic stops to effectively set up illegal checkpoints, and on Saturday Stuff revealed internal police advice saying that they actually needed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Anti-fluoridation propaganda now relies on only four studies. 2: Green et al (2019)
    Paul Connett is putting all his eggs in one basket. He says “you only have to read four studies” to find community after fluoridation harmful. Image credit: Fluoride Action Network newsletter. For part 1 of this series see Anti-fluoridation propaganda now relies on only four studies. 1: Bashash et al (2018). Paul Connett, ...
    4 days ago
  • Hard News: Splore Listening Lounge 2020: the road to a “yes” vote
    As far as anyone can say, New Zeaand still has a general election scheduled for September 19 this year. The election will be accompanied by two referenda, one of which will ask voters:Do you support the proposed Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill?The official campaign period for the cannabis referendum begins ...
    4 days ago
  • Obituary for The New Zealand Listener (1939-2020)
    The vast majority of tributes to the Listener hearken back to its glory days, with little reflection on the magazine as it was at its end.I wrote for it, for half the Listener’s life; I have known personally all the editors except the first (mythical) three. From 1978 to 2014 ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    4 days ago
  • Universal income – a challenge to capitalism or a crutch?
    As the world economy slides rapidly towards deep recession there are growing calls for a Universal Benefit coming from some leftists and rightists. Now Finance Minister Grant Robertson is saying it is on the table.  This article by a French party Workers Struggle provides analysis of various forms of universal ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    4 days ago
  • Anti-fluoridation propaganda now relies on only four studies. 1: Bashash et al (2018)
    This is the advice from the very top of the anti-fluoride movement – Paul Connett, director of the Fluoride Action Network (FAN). Don’t worry about reading  up on all the scientific information “You only have ...
    4 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 10
    . . April 4: Day 10 of living in lock-down… I wake up to a fine Saturday morning which normally would be like an early Christmas. But it’s Day 10 of Level 4 Lock Down. What  will my fellow New Zealanders be doing on a day like this – staying ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    5 days ago
  • Redline reaching out to more writers & readers
    Some time during the night we went over the 850,000 views mark. We might have had our millionth view by the end of this year – certainly by early next year. Most of the people involved in Redline spent years and years producing various small left-wing papers and selling them ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    5 days ago
  • Keir Starmer elected
    Comfortably, in the very first round, with an impressive 56% of the votes.I wonder, did members of the Shadow Cabinet start tweeting their resignations during Starmer's victory speech, or is that only a trick the right pull?It is odd how all the talk of how the next leader "needs to ...
    5 days ago
  • Hard News: Michael Baker and the Big House
    One of the key voices in this extraordinary time in which we live is that of University of Otago epidemiologist Professor Michael Baker. Philip Matthews did an an excellent job this weekend of capturing the way he became the man for this moment in a profile for The Press.But one ...
    5 days ago
  • New Zealand Gives up on Trying to Save Daylight
    New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern addressed the nation today about the decline in daylight New Zealand has been experiencing over the previous few months. She said “As many of you will notice, our attempts to stem the dwindling of the daylight over the last few months have been completely ...
    Can of wormsBy Can of Worms, Opened
    5 days ago
  • A bulletin from Greece
    Redline received this article from the KOE a Marxist party in Greece Our friends in the KOE describe here the mounting crisis in Greece and tensions on the Turkish border. As desperate people flee from their homelands which have been ruined after decades of imperialist wars and interventions the people ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    5 days ago
  • And God spake all these words, saying
    As the first week of Level Four lockdown unfolded, mounting questions grew as to just what was (and was not) allowed under its “rules”. Partly these were driven by some apparently contradictory messages from different authority figures and explanations carried in the media. Partly they reflected a somewhat sketchy legal basis ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    6 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 9
    . . April 3: Day 9 of living in lock-down… Another late-start to my work day. Everything is temporarily upended as clients are shuffled around so we can minimise our “bubble” by reducing the number of people we help. One of my colleagues has been removed from his clients; his ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    6 days ago
  • Death to our lockdown enemies!
    We must root out the traitors among us! ...
    Imperator FishBy Scott Yorke
    6 days ago
  • Climate Change: The benefits of electrification
    In order to meet our 2050 carbon target and do our bit to avoid making the Earth uninhabitable, New Zealand needs to decarbonise our economy, replacing fossil fuels with electricity in the energy, industrial and transport sectors. The good news is that it will mean cheaper power for all of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 8 (sanitised version)
    For those folk who find my other Lock-Down Diary versions too “negative” or otherwise unpalatable… Here’s a photo of a pretty flower, .   . Better? Tomorrow’s Sanitised Version: a cute animal video. . . . =fs= ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    7 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 8
    . . April 2: Day eight of living in lock-down… Today, my work day starts late. Our rosters and clients have been dramatically changed, lessening (theoretically) the number of people in our work “bubble”.  If just one of us catches covid19 the impact could be considerable as Grey Base Hospital ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    7 days ago
  • A note on apartments and bubbles
    As Aotearoa enters week two of lockdown, it’s clear we’re all still working out what our “bubbles” look like and how to stay in them to stop the spread of Covid-19. New to the government’s Covid-19 website is some good guidance for people living in apartment blocks. Recent decades have ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    7 days ago
  • Getting in futures shape 
    “There are decades where nothing happens; and there are weeks where decades happen.” Lenin Don’t we all know that feeling now.

    Prospect Magazine alerted me to this particularly apt quote. It is a much more evocative quote than Hemingway’s “gradually then suddenly” which is also doing ...

    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    7 days ago
  • Maybe axing Clark would be unfair. But what about any of this is fair?
    Yesterday was the day the consequences of the lockdown suddenly got very real for many. Firms have been closing and laying people off since the outset of the quarantine but this has mostly been happening out of the public eye. The mass closure of a number of iconic New Zealand ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    7 days ago
  • Might a ‘Coasean’ social contract mitigate overall societal harm from COVID-19?
    Brian Williamson1, Prof Nick Wilson2 (1Economic consultant, UK; 2University of Otago Wellington) In this blog, we outline how a win-win social contract could be forged to address the major dimensions of response to the COVID-19 pandemic when using a mitigation strategy: the particular need to protect older people from high ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    7 days ago
  • Returning To “Normalcy”.
    Resuming Normal Service: The Republican Party's nominee for in 1920, Warren Harding, promised the American people: “not heroics, but healing; not nostrums, but normalcy; not revolution, but restoration”. If she wishes to remain our prime minister, then Jacinda Ardern will offer New Zealanders the same.HOW EDUCATED AMERICA snickered when the ...
    7 days ago
  • New Zealand’s Government Must Save New Zealand’s Media.
    No Free Society Without A Free And Functioning News Media: If we are to surrender our civil rights to the broader cause of defeating Covid-19, then foreign corporations must, likewise, surrender their right to inflict immense economic and cultural harm on New Zealanders simply because it improves their bottom line.I’M ...
    7 days ago
  • Corona fevers and the madness of models
    by Daphna Whitmore A third of the world is under lockdown and a clear assessment of this measure to curb the spread of COVID-19 is urgently needed.  With any high-stakes decisions it has to be asked what are we dealing with here? Are the measures warranted? Will they achieve their ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Lockdown day 8
    I haven’t done a huge amount in the last few days. I’m reading The Poppy War and I’ve sort of poked at a couple of games – I started SOMA but I’m a wimp and I quit while in the first room after the brain scan. I might try it ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    1 week ago
  • Backstage and Theatre
    The swan politicians may be gliding on the water, occasionally snapping at one another. Meanwhile, as the Covid19 crisis illustrates, the officials are desperately paddling below providing the real locomotion. One of the most fatuous recent grandstanding comments (of about a week ago), adding to the public’s anxieties, was ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 week ago
  • Legal Beagle: Waiver, the singular Crown and the conduct of Crown legal business
    Much has been written about the importance of discretion in an emergency situation, and the concerns raised by the potential for it to be exercised arbitrarily. Given the quality of the discussion, there seemed little point in adding to it at any length. In particular, I point to the evidence ...
    1 week ago
  • Highlights from Bauer Media’s science-related reporting
    Today has felt surreal. I was all set to touch base online with my science communication students when a colleague shared the news that Bauer Media would be shutting down its publications immediately. The first link I saw implied it was Woman’s Weekly affected, and even that shocked me. But ...
    SciBlogsBy Sarah-Jane O'Connor
    1 week ago
  • Outsiders.
    Bogeymen, Real And Imagined: Is the number of psychopathic and sociopathic individuals in any given society truly as vanishingly small as we like to tell ourselves? Isn’t it more likely that the mass-shooters and serial-killers filling the headlines represent only the tip of a much, much larger iceberg of frightfulness? ...
    1 week ago
  • We have a right to know the rules we are expected to obey
    Outgoing Police Commissioner Mike Bush appeared before the Epidemic Response Committee today, who asked him for the rules police are using to enforce the lockdown. He refused:Police Commissioner Mike Bush has admitted the advice given to Kiwis about what they're able to do during the lockdown hasn't been clear enough. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 7 (sanitised version)
    For those folk who find my other Lock-Down Diary versions too “negative” or otherwise unpalatable… Here’s a photo of my cat, . . Better? Tomorrow’s Sanitised Version: a pretty flower. . . . =fs= ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 7
    . . April 1: Day seven of living in lock-down… This morning I had a brief chat with one of my neighbours, “D” (social distance between us, a good three or four metres). I learned he had resigned from his previous job and had been hired by another company – ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • RIP The Listener, New Zealand’s pioneering voice
    Funnily enough, my thought as I start this post is whether it will be well written enough. Or should that be well enough written? Because so much of what I know about good writing came from my two stints at The Listener, which this morning was shut down due to ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    1 week ago
  • OK, Britney: stop sniping at National for doing its job
    With normal democratic procedures in abeyance, there were two ways to go. First, it was open for the government to dissolve itself and invite the National Party to join a ministry of national salvation. That would have lessened the democratic deficit of the times by having a team of rivals without ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    1 week ago
  • Helpful tips for parents during lockdown
    Dr Kirsty Ross Children and young people can respond differently in times of distress. This also varies by age and developmental stage, with younger children having more magical and imaginative thinking, and older children having more awareness and knowledge of the issues our communities are facing (which brings up ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #13, 2020
    1 week ago
  • Hungary is now a dictatorship
    Hungary has been a virtual dictatorship for a decade now, as Prime Minister Viktor Orbán has gradually eroded its democracy. But now, its official, with the passage of an indefinite emergency law allowing rule by decree:Hungary’s parliament has passed a new set of coronavirus measures that includes jail terms for ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A new Ministry of Works
    While the economy is on pause under lockdown, the government is beginning to plan how to cope with the post-lockdown, post-tourism, post-export education world we will eventually find ourselves in. They're planning a lot of infrastructure spending as economic stimulus, and have asked for proposals which can start the moment ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Capture: Well spaced out
    It's my distraction,  setting up tiny scenes to photograph.  I've got stuck on the Babushka dolls for now.  Something about their bubble shape.  Something about their never changing, smiling features, suggesting persistent equanimity.  Can we get through everything that is being thrown at us and keep at least a tiny ...
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 6
    . . March 31: Day six of living in lock-down… This time I managed to sleep a little longer and the alarm woke me at the pre-set time: 6.55am. Then remembered I was working a later shift and could’ve slept in. Oh well, there are things to do at home. ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • March ’20 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
    Image credit: Diamond Harbour School Blogs I notice a few regulars no longer allow public access to the site counters. This may happen accidentally when the blog format is altered. If your blog is unexpectedly missing or ...
    1 week ago
  • Hard News: Poll Pot and the partisans
    Yesterday's Horizon poll showing support for a "Yes" vote in this year's cannabis referendum sliding into the majority for the first time in a year looked like good news for reformers – and it probably is. But the result warrants some scrutiny.The poll is the fifth in a series commissioned ...
    1 week ago
  • Why those bubbles are so important
    For almost a week now, every one of us who isn’t an essential worker has been confined to their bubble. We are allowed to go shopping for groceries, to visit the doctor, and to get a bit of exercise if we stay local. The reason we are doing this is ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    1 week ago
  • A Government System That Works
    The Covid-19 saga will no doubt produce many twists and turns for us before it is finally brought to an end. But one thing it has shown us – and what comfort it should bring us – is that our country’s government is in good hands. I am not thinking ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • Smashing down the barriers: Where are we at with COVID vaccines?
    In the absence of a vaccine or a cure for a deadly disease, staying home in your bubble is what you do, the concept is not new.  To the best of my knowledge last time we did this in NZ was for polio, in the years before a vaccine came ...
    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    1 week ago
  • National Network on Cuba (USA): “Cuban medical solidarity is a pillar of its society and is founde...
    The following statement was released on March 28 by the National Network on Cuba, a coalition of 40 groups, based in the United States. In recent weeks, Cuba has deployed hundreds of medical providers to over a dozen countries in Europe, Asia, as well as to their neighbors in Latin ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago

  • Decisions made on urgent turf maintenance
    The Sport and Recreation Minister Grant Robertson has announced that urgent maintenance of turf and care for plants in non-plantation nurseries will soon be able to go ahead under Level 4 restrictions. “The Government has agreed that urgent upkeep and maintenance of biological assets will be able to go ahead ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    12 hours ago
  • Acknowledging an extraordinary te reo champion
    E tangi ana a Taranaki iwi, e tangi ana te ao Māori, otirā e tangi ana te motu. Mōu katoa ngā roimata e riringi whānui ana, mōu katoa ngā mihi.   E te kaikōkiri i te reo Māori, e Te Huirangi, takoto mai. Takoto mai me te mōhio ko ngā ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    12 hours ago
  • Prime Minister’s remarks halfway through Alert Level 4 lockdown
    Today is day 15 of Alert Level 4 lockdown. And at the halfway mark I have no hesitation in saying, that what New Zealanders have done over the last two weeks is huge. In the face of the greatest threat to human health we have seen in over a century, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    15 hours ago
  • Licenses, WoFs and regos extended under lockdown
    All driver licences, WoFs, CoFs, and some vehicle certifications, that expired on or after 1 January 2020 will be valid for up to six months from 10 April 2020, Transport Minister Phil Twyford has announced. “People shouldn’t have to worry about getting fined for having an expired document if driving ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    17 hours ago
  • Inquiry report into EQC released
    The Government has today released the report from the Public Inquiry into the Earthquake Commission chaired by Dame Silvia Cartwright.  Minister Responsible for the Earthquake Commission Grant Robertson says the Government wants to learn from people’s experiences following the Canterbury earthquakes and other recent natural disasters. “Dame Silvia’s report documents ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    18 hours ago
  • More time for health workers and elderly to get flu vaccine
    The Government has extended by two weeks till April 27 the amount of time priority groups, such as health workers and those aged over 65, have to get their flu vaccine before it is made available to the wider public. This year’s vaccination campaign is a key component of the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    21 hours ago
  • Communities step up to help New Zealanders stay connected and fed during lockdown
    Communities stepping up to help New Zealanders stay at home to break the transmission of COVID-19 and save lives have received Government support, said Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni. “Delivering groceries for the elderly who can’t shop online, providing data packs for low income families to keep them connected, and being ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • 120 COVID-19 testing centres now operating
    Across New Zealand 120 sites are taking samples to be tested for COVID-19.   68 community based assessment centres (CBACs) have been established to take samples from people with COVID-19 symptoms. Alongside this, 52 other centres including designated general practices, swabbing centres, and mobile clinics are now testing people for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Covid19: Government moving quickly to roll out learning from home
    The Ministry of Education is working with partners to develop a package of options so that students can learn at home when Term 2 begins on 15 April, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. Supports are also being prepared for households with children under five, to help parents and whānau ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Making learning from home accessible to Māori learners and whānau
    Māori Television to begin educational te reo programmes Ki te Ao Mārama – a new online learning space Thousands of hard copy learning packs ready for distribution Helpdesk and advice service for kōhanga, kura and wharekura Television, the internet and hard copy learning packs are some of the ways whānau ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand to provide assistance to Vanuatu following Tropical Cyclone Harold
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters has announced an initial package of support to help the people and the Government of Vanuatu respond to the impact of Tropical Cyclone Harold. “Our Pacific neighbours have been hit by a Category 5 Cyclone at the same time as dealing with the economic impacts ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Planning for the future of tourism
    Tourism New Zealand to lead work reimagining the way tourism operates in post-COVID-19 world. Ministers to review International Visitor Conservation and Tourism Levy investment plan. The Government, industry and business are working together to develop a plan for how tourism will operate in a post-COVID-19 world, Tourism Minister Kelvin Davis ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • NZ horticulture sector feeding Kiwis and the world during COVID-19
    More New Zealanders are taking up the chance to work in horticulture as the sector keeps New Zealanders fed and in jobs during the COVID-19 Alert Level 4 lockdown. “Our horticulture sector has long been one of New Zealand’s export star performers, contributing around $6 billion a year to our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Work to repurpose PGF funds begins
    The Provincial Development Unit is working through applications and projects to see where Provincial Growth Fund money can be repurposed for initiatives deemed more critical to fighting the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones says. “We need to be throwing everything we have at ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • A million workers supported by Govt wage subsidy
    The Government’s wage subsidy to protect jobs and keep workers and businesses connected during the lockdown has now supported over a million New Zealanders, with $6.6 billion already paid out. “We’re supporting businesses to pay wages, and stay connected with their workers so that we are all in a better ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government helps Pacific communities fight COVID
    The Government is stepping up efforts to help protect New Zealand’s Pacific communities in the fight against COVID-19. Cabinet has agreed that $17 million will be allocated to support a COVID-19 Pacific Response Package, which will: Support Pacific health and disability services facing increased demand; Ramp up public health messaging ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Statement from the Prime Minister on Dr David Clark
    “Yesterday evening the Health Minister advised me of his trip to a beach during the lockdown and offered his resignation,” Jacinda Ardern said.  “Under normal conditions I would sack the Minister of Health. What he did was wrong, and there are no excuses.  “But right now, my priority is our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Statement from David Clark
    Last night as part of my preparation for the Epidemic Response Committee, I provided the Prime Minister with a complete picture of my activity outside my home during Alert Level 4.  That included the fact that on the first weekend of the Alert Level 4 lockdown I drove my family ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • COVID-19 mental health support begins
    A range of support is being rolled out across New Zealand to help people look after their mental health during COVID-19 Health Minister David Clark said this morning. “COVID-19 has brought a lot of uncertainty into our lives and many of us will be feeling some level of distress or ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New Zealanders in Peru to be assisted by Government charter flight
    The New Zealand Government has made arrangements to charter a flight for New Zealanders stranded in Peru to depart the country, following agreement with the Chilean government to allow the necessary transit through Chile, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters announced today. “Like many travellers around the world at the moment, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • COVID-19 Hospital Preparation Well Advanced
    Hospital preparations for COVID-19 are well advanced says Health Minister David Clark. “Hospitals across New Zealand are repurposing buildings and training staff to get ready for COVID-19 patients. This gives me confidence that we are well prepared for any potential increase in COVID-19 patients needing hospital level care,” said David ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Further measures to support businesses
    The Government will be introducing legislation to make changes to the Companies Act to help companies facing insolvency due to COVID-19 to remain viable and keep New Zealanders in jobs. The temporary changes include: Giving directors of companies facing significant liquidity problems because of COVID-19 a ‘safe harbour’ from insolvency ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Govt’s COVID plan, economic strength recognised
    The Government’s plan to cushion the blow of COVID-19 by supporting incomes, jobs and businesses, and position the economy to recover has been backed by another international report. International credit rating agency Moody’s today reaffirmed its highest Aaa credit rating on New Zealand, saying the economy is expected to remain ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Government supports air services to offshore islands
    The Government has stepped in to support vital air links to our offshore islands, the Chatham Islands, Great Barrier Island and Motiti Island, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. “As part of our $600 million support package to minimise the impacts of COVID-19 on the aviation sector, the Government has ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Funding certainty for sports through COVID-19
    National sports organisations have been given certainty of funding to ensure they can remain viable through the COVID-19 pandemic, Sport and Recreation Minister Grant Robertson announced today. “The global spread of COVID-19 has had a significant impact on sport and recreation in New Zealand, including the cancellation or postponement of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Butchers now allowed to process pork
    Changes have been made to allow butchers to process pork, only for supply to supermarkets or other processors or retailers that are open, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has announced. “We carefully weighed the risk of allowing butchers to open their shops for retail customers, but the risk of spreading COVID-19 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Essential workers leave scheme established
    Essential workers who take leave from work to comply with public health guidance are being supported with a leave scheme to ensure they will continue to receive income, say the Minister of Workplace Relations and Safety Iain Lees-Galloway and Minister for Social Development, Carmel Sepuloni. A number of essential businesses ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Govt WhatsApp helps share COVID-19 information
    A Government WhatsApp channel has been launched to help make information more easily accessible and shareable in the fight against COVID-19. Govt.NZ, which is free to use on any mobile device, will carry information and news for the public, businesses, healthcare providers, not for profits and local government. It can ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Managed departure plan for stranded foreign nationals enables safe, orderly exit
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