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Open Mike 29/01/2018

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, January 29th, 2018 - 68 comments
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68 comments on “Open Mike 29/01/2018 ”

  1. Rosemary McDonald 1


    Oh you who doubted this New Progressive Coalition Government was committed to raising children out of poverty, eliminating homelessness, sorting the environment before its even more too late and righting past wrongs with an Inquiry into State Child abuse and failings in the mental health system.

    Wintston is there, elder statesman that he is, keeping those Young Ones on the right track.

    So to speak.


    “”It’s fantastic to have the Deputy Prime Minister as advocate for racing in the government. Clearly he’s committed to implementing the policies, he’s going to work through a time policy and a budget like a responsible minister needs to. And we’re looking forward to him making further announcements.””

    • James 1.1

      a bloody multi million all weather horse racing track paid for by the government- announced in the first 100 days – wow ! Just wow !

      • Bill 1.1.1

        Absolutely fantastic! Children can now pan handle, pass the money to a grown up who can then throw the money on a nag. Every day!

        Just a few long shots and “voila!” – new house, new shoes, new car (electric of course), and with the new found sense of security, mental health stats will level off, fewer children will suffer abuses and…and…why didn’t anyone think of this before?!

        Meanwhile. In Britain, Labour has announced it will,
        not just build homes, but buy houses for the homeless and give local authorities the powers to seize vacant properties. Stupid Brits!

      • stunned mullet 1.1.2

        Just Winston being Winston ……

      • Morrissey 1.1.3

        Better use of money than that flag referendum.

      • savenz 1.1.4

        The horse industry employs a lot of youth and is a diversified export industry. Isn’t creating jobs for youth and export jobs good as well as having better equal opportunities? A few years ago the Melbourne cup was won by a female jockey and her brother was the strapper who had Down syndrome. The winning horse was NZ born.

        (Saying that, unlike OZ, NZ would probably import in cheaper workers for our racing industry than actually bother to train youth or give special needs people opportunities.)

    • weka 1.2

      Stupid Labour, they should have said no to Peters and let him go with National.

      Seeing as how we’re doing sarcasm this morning 😉

      I’d like to see an assessment of what the new govt *has done. Shaw’s just done a fucking impressive State of the Planet speech on plans for deep change around environmental issues. JA has committed to an Inquiry into State child abuse. I haven’t been following the rest much, but while I personally think that funding racing is not the best use of money I can’t see how it’s that much different than funding the arts. If it were a cultural centre or art gallery, would people be quite as critical?

      • stunned mullet 1.2.1

        Wow a state of the planet speech – great, woohoo, fabulous….

        “but while I personally think that funding racing is not the best use of money I can’t see how it’s that much different than funding the arts. If it were a cultural centre or art gallery, would people be quite as critical?”

        Who are you and what have you done with the real Weka 😆

        • Incognito

          It seems that you want to put people in boxes and they must be one-dimensional and single-minded and only sing one song from a single track or from one song sheet and never ever (!) deviate from this or break the mould to avoid surprise and embarrassment of others who depend (!) on boxes & labels and the world to be as static and predictable as possible. I’d suggest that you take up residence in Madame Tussauds and only venture out during hours of closure and hibernate during the tourist season.

          • weka

            I’m still trying to figure out how my comment could be considered out of character.

            • Incognito

              My comment @ was to stunned mullet @ 1.2.1 and I cannot answer for them. My guess is, however, that on the face of it your comment did not conform to their preconceptions and expectations of you for one reason or other. The other possibility is, of course, that they misunderstood/misinterpreted your comment but instead of asking for clarification or conformation they jumped to a conclusion and voilà. I wouldn’t lose any sleep over it 😉

        • savenz

          Yes millions of tax payer dollars and stealing Auckland’s harbour for America’s cup billionaires for a one off event, to prop up international hotel chains is a better use of our money. sarc.

      • DoublePlusGood 1.2.2

        Well, given that racing is animal abuse, I’d say it’s much different to arts funding.

        • Rosemary McDonald

          “… racing is animal abuse,…”

          Yes, it is.

          Unless community arts programs involve whips…no comparison.

        • weka

          I agree, but we also allow chicken factories and industrial dairying, so that’s a much bigger conversation about NZ values. I was meaning that for NZ society, we government fund a range of cultural things, so why is racing bad?

          • Molly

            The gambling associated with racing, and the devastation it causes in our communities is the point of difference for me.

            Animal welfare, as you mention, is also a consideration.

            • weka

              True. Hard to see how that is substantially different to something like rugby though. We fund quite a lot of stuff that causes harm.

              • Rosemary McDonald

                “Hard to see how that is substantially different to something like rugby though…”


                • weka

                  I was referring to the social impact of racing and rugby, not the animal welfare. I’m not making an argument here for racing being a good thing.

            • mary_a

              Good concise post Molly ( The unfortunate downside(s) relating to the horse racing industry are clearly there to see.

              I wonder if this one might have been Winston’s “bottom line” during the negotiations?

      • Rosemary McDonald 1.2.3

        “Stupid Labour, they should have said no to Peters and let him go with National.”

        Stupid Labour, they should have told us, the voting public, “We could have done a deal with NZF but Winston made taxpayer funding of the racing industry his bottom line.”

        • weka

          I think it’s was obvious before the election that Labour would be dependent on NZF and that would mean agreeing to things that are disagreeable.

        • weka

          sorry, you’ve lost me there.

          • Incognito

            I’m sure you’ve got better things to do than responding to my nit-picking but you wrote @ 1.2:

            I’d like to see an assessment of what the new govt *has done. Shaw’s just done a fucking impressive State of the Planet speech on plans for deep change around environmental issues. [my bold; not sure about the asterisk]

            I took it to suggest that the State of the Planet speech was representing Government in some way while it is really and mostly a Green Party affair (for now, at least).

            • weka

              Lol, fair call. It’s interesting because Golriz has been tweeting about how she’s not part of the govt and is thus free to criticise. This is true. It’s also true that some of the GP MPs are part of the govt. And so we can say that the Greens are part of the govt and not part of the govt, just to keep everyone on their toes 😛

              The speech likewise. It was from Shaw as the GP co-leader, but he is also a Minister. The speech talked about both GP things and things govt is doing.

              These apparent contradictions are useful to break us out of the western dualistic mindset, which is probably a prerequisite for getting out of the mess we are in 😉


    • AsleepWhileWalking 1.3

      Just add a cover to an existing track, and hand back the Platinum Visa to the taxpayer.

  2. Koff 2

    I rarely read du Plessis-Allan without cringing, but she has actually written something more enlightening in this morning’s Herald.


    One aspect of learning te Reo that never seems to be mentioned is that it is a link to appreciating the life of the many scattered islands of the Pacific. Maori is almost the same as the language of the Southern Cooks and the Society Islands (Tahiti etc) and many words are pan Polynesian. (aroha/aloha; whenua/vanua/fonua; whare/fare/vale etc). It is a reminder that NZ is in the Pacific.

    • JanM 2.1

      Wow – I’m impressed!

    • red-blooded 2.2

      The general train of thought (rebutting of excuses) is great, but what’s with the repeated attacks on social studies? If she knew anything about the social studies curriculum she’d realise she’s way off the mark with this. (Plus, drawing bugs and learning the recorder in primary school can also be great learning.) You don’t have to pull one subject down in order to build another up.

      (And no, I don’t teach social studies, although I did train in this subject and have taught it in the past.)

      • Morrissey 2.2.1

        In social studies, children learn that, for instance, apartheid in South Africa, where Du Plessis-Soper comes from, was a crime. That means social studies is bad. As is science, which teaches the kids that the world is not flat.

  3. red-blooded 3

    I’ve only just read this article on Britons’ current attitudes to Brexit which suggests that a (slim) majority in the UK now favour having a second referendum once the negotiations have finished and they know the terms. It’s interesting to look at the breakdown per country, age group and according to party preference. The Leave vote is much stronger amongst older voters and Conservatives and more Labour voters and younger people voted Remain in the first place and/or have changed their minds and would now vote Remain.

    I’m not predicting they’ll get a second vote, but I still think this is an interesting insight into the current mindset, as they see the outcome of the Leave vote developing.

  4. Morrissey 4

    “Lots of people seemed to go nuts.”
    A leading thinker trumpets his support for Trump.


  5. The Chairman 5


    Caro Meldrum-Hanna exposes the hidden practices occurring in several areas of the waste industry.


  6. Puckish Rogue 6

    Have Labour-Greens fully realised they’re the government now and aren’t in opposition?

    I ask because there have been tweets from the Greens that probably shouldn’t be sent out by government MPs (others probably disagree) and other examples like Grant Robertson asking for tenants to send him details of “bad” landlords

    It looks like what you do in opposition, bringing up problems and/or advocating unlawful protests and such like but, especially in Grant Robertsons case,I’d have thought its the governments role to sort out the issues, not highlight them

    • red-blooded 6.1

      In order to sort out issues, you need to be informed about them. Getting information from the perspective of tenants is part of a reasonable process. After all, landlords and real estate agents are free with their opinions and have plenty of input – why shouldn’t tenants and tenants’ advocacy groups?

      • Puckish Rogue 6.1.1

        Sure get the information but then post the letters on office window, thats a bit less getting information and bit more attempting to demonise landlords

        It just feels like the transition from opposition to power hasn’t fully happened yet and the last thing Labour needs to do is help National by bringing up issues and problems

  7. Sanctuary 7

    I think this partly is also in response to yesterdays thread about how to handle a Labour led government…

    I was just listening to Kathryn Ryan interviewing Chris Hipkins about National’s “Social Investment” – AKA the use of big data and invasion of privacy for Orwellian social control of the untermenschen – and it is pretty clear she thought it was a good idea.

    Now, The exchange between Ryan and Hipkins was to me most interesting because of it’s unspoken underlying ideological context. The ideological aspect of this is Ryan is firmly a member of the professional middle class, an expert elite that benefits economically as the willing enactors of neoliberalism. Social investment appeals to the values of this group – technocratic, data driven with class based authoritarianism and iced on top with an unspoken deterministic moral dimension that suits a judgementalist Protestant tradition of victim blaming.

    Hipkins struggled in his reply to Ryan’s forceful, pro-social investment questioning because although he is nominally a member of a social democratic party the NZ PLP is still most comfortable playing a particular role within a neoliberal paradigm. Essentially, while National pursues a liberal authoritarian model where large sections of the population are excluded from the benefits of economic growth through the voluntary abandonment of policies designed to address inequality and the devolving of authoritarian power to private and quasi-private businesses that have no requirement to address social needs, Labour aims to be liberal-democratic in that it wants to use the state to enact policies that aid the market’s distribution of the benefits of economic growth across the whole population and “corrects” any deficiencies via mechanisms like working for families.

    Both the liberal authoritarian and liberal democratic models are neoliberal, because they both still stress the primacy of the free market and free trade.

    To that extent, Labour calling itself a “social democratic” party is a misnomer. It is a “liberal democratic” party within the context of an elite neoliberal consensus.

    Hipkins, then, couldn’t give a frankly ideological reason for the rejection of “social investment” because Labour still doesn’t have the balls to step outside the consensus and attack neoliberalism at an ideological level. So he flapped about like a freshly landed flounder, dissembling and prevaricating in the manner we’ve all becomes used to from “new Labour” ministers .

    Within the liberal democratic middle class much of the incomprehension at the rise of Corbynism lay in that classes usual abject failure of imagination, and its failure to grasp the power of socialist idealism that offered hope but that had been long suppressed by a capitalist class determined to erase it from history. The idea that an individual exists within the context of a community and has an agency diminished by disadvantage, certain untradable rights to privacy and access to the dignity provided by the welfare state is simply alien to both the media (as represented by Ryan) and the political elites, as represented by Hipkins. if you don’t believe me, just remind yourselves of the media (and middle class) lynching that happened to Metiria Turei.

    So the political dilemma – change to socialism, in the short term, is impossible as long as both main political actors are wedded to variations of the neoliberal paradigm. But the liberal democracy of Labour is better than the devolved liberal authoritarianism of National. The handling of this dilemma is really the way of handing the wider engagement with this Labour led government. The three principles I usually adopt when analysing this government are as follows:

    1/Better them than National (ALWAYS fight the external enemy with greater vigor than the internal ones)
    2/Better a social democratic Labour than a liberal democratic Labour. (Always be aware of the ideological cuckoos in the nest)
    3/Better a socialist Labour than a social democratic Labour. (Always remember the ultimate goal)

    • RedBaronCV 7.1

      I”ll believe this social investment stuff the day they start modelling the factors that make up tax dodgers and offshore tax haven investors who cost the community far far more

  8. Ffloyd 8

    General discussion hopefully. When is news not news. In Hamilton an elderly man with mild dementia recently disappeared from his home. Hundreds of locals have been scouring the city, countryside and areas of his younger days. Also the river is being searched daily by family, friends and concerned strangers. Facebook is being widely used to co ordinate the search. He has been missing 13 days. Why had this not been reported in all media? Especially television.

  9. savenz 9

    Former New Zealand MP says Canada’s new trans-Pacific trade deal may leave Indigenous Peoples defenceless


  10. Ffloyd 10

    Thought I had run out of room. My point is that programmes like the Project has really rivetting things like *biscuit of the year* , funny signs around nz, rambles from Josh etc. Could they not put in a slot for items like this missing man that Would go into so many homes and cast the net so much wider. As well as msm. Just saying.

    • Adrian 10.1

      It seems like the right thing to do, to fill up the news with missing persons but when a mate went missing a few years ago and while talking to the cop in charge he gave us an insight into exactly how many do go missing annually and surprisingly it is in the thousands,
      The police initially establish whether a crime has been committed, theft and run away or likely assault and death etc, and if not just keep an open book on it,
      For children the police actions are a lot different but not for adults as most turn up again within a week or so.
      Our mate did exactly that, turned up 12 days later 800 kms away in another island having no idea how he got there.

      • Ffloyd 10.1.1

        Did you ever find out. 800 is a long way.This old gentleman has just disappeared. He did live in close proximity to the river so close attention has been paid to that. However what I was getting at is that that maybe there could just be a minute at most with a photo given to asking the public to keep an eye out for that person. Doesn’t have to be a whole programme.

  11. red-blooded 11

    Interesting article on Stuff: the dairy industry have hired a big-hit lobbying firm to run a “rivers are good for you” social and traditional media campaign, with the message that we shouldn’t worry about our rivers (it’s stressful) and that if kiwis increasingly choose not to swim in our rivers it’s because we’ve gone soft (they’re too cold) – not because they’ve become unhealthy.

    This deserves more attention.

    • Muttonbird 11.1

      It’s an interesting read alright. Good to see the National Party connections being exposed in the Dairy/Irrigation lobby groups and their PR arms. Theses industries are the ones who have destroyed our waterways and Kiwis are alarmed at how quick it’s happened. What is particularly galling though is that there’s so contrition from them rather they are doubling down and trying to deny responsibility.

    • RedBaronCV 11.2

      Anyone read newsroom.co.nz at the weekend. There was a Fonterra story and a back track to an earlier one.
      Fonterra is apparently making about 60 cents revenue a kg while Nestle makes about $1.90. We could have the same profits for a third less cows if Fonterra had abided by it’s originial rationale for the merger. Going into upmarket comsumer products – but no they didn’t.

    • Incognito 11.3

      Swim Fresh’s spokesman, Mark Blackham, is the PR company’s founder and a long-time lobbyist. The campaign is staffed by Massey University’s communication, journalism and marketing students.

      Fascinating stuff! I wonder where and how Professor Claire Robinson might fit into all this …


      • Muttonbird 11.3.1

        Good point. She’s a Nat plant at Massey. I wonder if a campaign by the socially and environmentally responsible left against Massey university could be useful using the very same techniques described by Mark Blackham.

        After all why should a taxpayer funded students be used for dairy and irrigation lobbying in their course material?

  12. Carolyn_Nth 12

    So what happened to the Green left within the NZ Green Party – and other groups within the GP networks?

    They are listed and linked to on the old GP website, which still exists, but there’s no links to them on the new website.

    Green Left (on old GP website):

    Green Left

    The purpose of this network is to create a space where members who identify with a left-wing political position can discuss and develop their ideas to bring them to the wider Party.

    We are a national network dedicated to analysing the economic system, in relation to race and gender, ecology, militarism and other issues, and in organising to move beyond a global capitalist economic structure that is exploiting both the people and the planet.

    • weka 12.1

      I haven’t looked at the new website for a few months, but last year it was a bit of a mess. The front of it was functional, all based around the election and aimed at voters rather than members, but the rest of it was haphazard. They’re meant to be fixing it.

      Matt might be a good person to ask on twitter about the Green Left.

  13. Muttonbird 13

    I hope the current government doesn’t bow to lobbying by the low grade international tertiary institutions which sprouted like milkweed over the term of the last National government. I hope also the current government doesn’t bow to the lobbyists’ proxies in the public service giving ILG advice to not reform the sector because the same sector might lose some cash.

    The debacle in international student education in NZ encouraged by the Key government damaged the country both within and without, wage suppression, housing pressure, and immigration fraud within, and devaluing NZ education through by promoting back door immigration through education and painting NZ as a soft touch without.

    These shitty tertiary providers should not only be shut down but they should be charged with fraud as should the previous government’s ministers who engineered it.


  14. Jilly Bee 14

    I’ve just read a piece on jury service in the NZME (N Z Herald) website by Kerrie McIvor and for better or worse I find myself pretty much in agreement with her sentiments as I don’t usually agree with her pontifications. I served on a jury at the High Court in Auckland in the early 2000s and found myself part of a case against a bloke who had been charged with a couple of charges one degree below full-blown rape. The case went on for at least a week – it was an ordeal, to say the least. We ultimately found the defendant guilty of one of the charges after a long day and a half of deliberating. My point is that my fellow 11 jurors along with myself took our responsibilities totally seriously – the juror we elected as our spokesperson was totally up to the job, one of the jurors was unemployed and we rather thought that he would rather be somewhere else when we really got down to the nitty-gritty of making the ultimate decision, but he hung in there with some really good comments. My employer at the time paid me for the time I was away – as I had already done a few hours overtime and it was simply easier to do it that way. I don’t know how I would have reacted if any of my fellow jurors had not taken their responsibilities, well, responsibly. I found it a very profound experience. http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11982400

  15. eco maori 15

    Sandflys thanks for the Mana you gave me on my stay in Auckland I checked all your moves while we were fixing up our daughter situation . Gisborne man knows that I’m the person he has been trying to find and suppress frame and lock away for a few years now. I know of a phenomenon that Gisborne man has not figured out and I’m not tell anyone anything about that. One is I can smell them a mile away you know what pakeha means it means bad breath LOL.
    Ana to kai

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