Open mike 29/01/2023

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, January 29th, 2023 - 83 comments
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83 comments on “Open mike 29/01/2023 ”

  1. Tiger Mountain 1

    The Auckland right, business groups and conservative powers that be from the Eastern Suburbs etc. seem to have harboured deep resentment at not having captured the first and subsequent Supercity Mayoralty races, won initially by another Mr Brown (Len) from South Auckland.

    So, they tactically withdrew candidates this time such as Mr Molloy, and Ms Beck, and used the perfect storm of transience, alienation, low participation, degraded postal service, and the rather reluctant endorsement of Efeso Collins by Labour, to install “Mr Fixit”.

    It would be hard to find a more motley crew of political opportunists and operators than those that ran “Browny’s” campaign, including an ex Labour guy Chris ‘Lizard’ Matthews. But regardless of all that, the Mayoral response to the awful Auckland weather event is grounds surely to discard Wayne Brown and install Commissioners.
    Labour have done this previously…

    His appalling rate of response to Media requests could also feature in such a “recall”.

    • Anne 1.1

      Not quite at the "commissioner" stage yet but…yes yes

    • Ad 1.2

      On the bright side, like having the Republicans with a Congress majority, Auckland now gets to see how shit the right are at actual governance for the next three years.

      In fact the right are so shit Auckland Council is now putting up Shane Henderson as weather crisis speaker, rather than dealing with another round of media standup with Mayor Brown. Shane Henderson as a benchmark of competence is not a high hurdle to jump.

      All Hipkins needs to do now to rescue Three Waters is publish the aerial footage, and do his next media conference knee-deep in a flooded back park.

    • Visubversa 1.3

      Amazing how that "Lizard" monniker has stuck to Chris Matthews. I remember using it when he was hanging around Labour in the 1990's. The "lizard" was coined because his eyes are the same colour as his face. I also remember when he and his mate the "Brothel Creeper' (Labour, not Labour, Labour again) were stomping around one of the Region 1 Labour List conferences telling various delegations that they would tell them who to vote for. Certainly did not work for the delegation I was part of.

    • Incognito 1.4

      I don’t see any reason for a Commissioner to replace Auckland City Council. There is no irreconcilable differences and/or breakdown of professional relationship(s).

      During events of the past days, it is inevitable that things go wrong and that mistakes are made. However, Wayne Brown keeps passing the buck, which shows arrogance and incompetence that are bad traits for a leader. However, he has learned one big lesson: avoid the media even more than before – he’ll be even more media-shy that during the first 4 months of his tenure.

    • rod 1.5

      I think Mr Fuxit is better than Mr Fixit.

  2. Ad 2

    MSN have picked up Newsroom's fairly bracing 2nd part review of Ardern's performance as Prime Minister.

    Ardern squandered her chance at transformational change at every turn (

    "Ardern Squandered Her Chance At Transformational Change At Every Turn"

    Particular focus is put on the budget effect of the Budget Responsibility Rules that Labour and Greens signed up to and their impact on the ability of the state to redistribute wealth usefully.

    But also, how they made it far worse than it needed to be:

    "Labour’s handling of the Covid economic crisis led to the biggest increase in inequality in recorded history.

    The previous huge spike in inequality in New Zealand’s recent past was between 1984 and 1993, when the initial introduction of neoliberalism to this country led to the fastest rise in inequality seen anywhere in the OECD during that period.

    That was also initiated by a Labour government.

    It’s darkly ironic that Labour, the supposed party of workers, who were founded to challenge capitalism and the inequality it creates, were at the helm both times in the past 90 years when inequality exploded."

    In the moments of governance calm between each crisis we face now, Labour and its partners have to do more than make inequality worse.

    The review is a bracing survey of some highlights, but mostly of the yawning gap between idealism and delivery.

    • bwaghorn 2.1

      Where do you stand on wealth taxs? , just out of interest,

      • Ad 2.1.1

        The most corrosive tax on lower income people is GST. It has driven inequality in this country massively and mostly unexamined.

        The government books are propped up with GST because PAYE from our low average wages just wouldn't support our way of life.

        I would wipe out GST before anything else.

        • AB

          Yes- but from where do we raise the revenue to replace it?

          • Ad

            Do better with the funding you have before you keep trying to tax people more.

            Do you want to go through the appalling tax funding waste of the last two terms? How much this government spent on useless consultants. Reforms that went nowhere. Projects large and small that died. Gold plated cycleways like 3 in construction in Wellington region now. Stupid makework lists of further hundreds of millions like NZUP. Billions of direct subsidies to business in 2020 rather than to workers, which business pocketed and fired workers anyway.

            Stop spending my tax dollars on useless crap that does nothing.

          • Nic the NZer

            Tax collection is not a limitation. Were the govt to simply drop GST its deficit would increase and GDP would increase by the same ($ for $). As a result of this PAYE collection will increase eventually. The difference will see higher NZ saving rates (lower non-govt sector debt). The longer term situation will be similar to today even with no other taxation changes.

            The major determinant of the govt budget position is how the rest of the economy is going. Its largely out of the govts hands if (when) its running a surplus or deficit.

  3. Anne 3

    A weather preview of what is coming over the next few days:,-30.883,174.507,5,m:cJCakBp,175.342,5

    Tie down anything that moves, stay indoors and cross fingers and toes.

    • Ad 3.1

      Better graphics than metvuw or metservice

      Good to see some of it coming to Wanaka and Queenstown at the end of the week.

      • Graeme 3.1.1

        Will be very welcome if it eventuates. Not counting the chickens just yet though

        • mary_a

          @ Graeme (3.1.1) Where I live in Cromwell, it is extremely dry, so much so that it could become a fire risk soon and the wind doesn't help this situation either. Some rain will be most welcome indeed. But not a massive deluge please!

      • tWiggle 3.1.2

        You can bet Niwa onsells data it collects here to world-wide apps like this one. Good idea, if it subsidises the cost of collection.

  4. Adrian 4

    Ad, if you want to read a bit of reality try reading Frank Macskasy ‘s “ A calm Look at Public Housing on the feed column on this page.

    • Ad 4.1

      He's right to point to Labour's housing rebuild successes and rail against National's prior folly.

      But Mr Mackasay's main stat is simply that Labour now has the situation about the same as where they were the last time they were in power. Getting back only to where you started isn't usefully defensible.

      Meantime the waiting list for public housing has gone up to 24,000 and most of those are waiting over 6 months.

      Public housing waitlist hits 24,000, half waiting more than 200 days for a home |

      And of course in one weather event we now have 5,000 further properties needing review over 25 suburbs.

      Weather: Auckland, Coromandel, Bay of Plenty, Waikato lashed by heavy rain – slips, floods and widespread damage to homes; Tauranga house destroyed by landslide; Waitomo declares state of emergency – NZ Herald

      That's a further tidal surge of rental and emergency and public housing need right there.

      • Mac1 4.1.1

        "Labour now has the situation about the same as where they were the last time they were in power. Getting back only to where you started isn't usefully defensible."

        Labour has built in five years 7400 houses which is what National sold, acknowledged as unwise by Nicola Willis, between 2008 and 2016. We now have once again 69000 houses.

        That is a useful and defensible number. We built them. They sold them. We are still building more than we sell or disposed of, as some houses still always have to be sold, renovated or demolished.

        • Ad

          Just not true.

          The programme Kainga Ora is on has resulted in the privatisation of over a third of State House land, and the direct enrichment of private developers far more than the state. Don't mention Rotorua.

          And that's just housing.

          Hospital waiting lists are massive and growing. Despite a term of deep reform and lots of task forces.

          Road toll massively increased in this Parliamentary term. Nearly two terms worth of culture change, legislative change, funding change, and Board change.

          Child poverty is decreased but total poverty has increased including those who work. Check out the food parcel use increases from the Salvation Army and other providers.

          Gun crime and gang crime has massively increased, with other crimes trending down.

          Business confidence and manufacturing has plummeted through the floor.

          Inflation is out of control like we haven't seen since the late 1980s.

          The only major completed reform is in carbon trading legislation from the Greens. Which apparently doesn't work.

          RMA reform uncomplete.

          Health reform incomplete.

          Tertiary education reform incomplete.

          Energy reform incomplete.

          Water management reform incomplete and voted against by Greens.

          Worker unemployment compensation reform incomplete.

          No effective reform to supermarkets, fuel, building materials, or any other near-duopolies.

          The road and rail networks are a disaster in maintenance and major works and public transport use has plummeted.

          We're importing more coal for electricity production than way back since Meremere was in production.

          55% of us believe we are going in the wrong direction. We are likely to be in recession by the middle of the year.

          The Prime Minister of the world just gave up because it was hard.

          Labour's trendline is aiming under 30%, Greens are on 10% and NZFirst are easily heading for 5%.

          And we've got the most right wing Labour Prime Minister in my lifetime.

  5. Francesca 5

    Very grateful for the feed column on this site

    No right turn on the spy agencies' powers, and a handy little loophole

  6. Incognito 6

    I guess we should be grateful that Elon Musk hadn’t killed off and silenced the little blue birdie. Twitter appeared to be a major if not the main line of communication during the emergency. This is a potential future weakness that needs to be addressed in the inevitable review of the emergency response.

    • weka 6.1

      Been really feeling this over the past few days. ER systems need to rethink this, but so does NZ twitter. So reliant on twitter for too many things.

      • Incognito 6.1.1

        Can’t live with it, can’t live without, that sort of thing?

        • tWiggle

          What about good old radio?

          • weka

            it's the interactive nature of twitter that makes it so valuable. And the access to journalists, MPs, councillors, official accounts (eg metservice or CD) and so on. Quite often NZ twitter functions like this, shit gets communicated or organised, it's fast and in real time and there's not anything else like it.

            In an ideal world some geeks would get together and create a local platform to serve that function. That would be a fun place to moderate 😈

          • weka

            to give you a non-NZ example, early on in the pandemic (before it was called a pandemic) I knew (along with many others) that the emerging coronavirus was going to be a major emergency when Italian hospital doctors started tweeting (against their organisational policy) about having to triage patients in the corridors and some were being left to die.

            It was incredibly shocking and hard to believe, but people on twitter were engaged and checking out if the reports and accounts were legit. It took two days for the Guardian (one of the first MSM) to begin covering what was happening in Italy, this is the time to fact check (and get past the language barriers). Longer for the other MSM to pick it up.

            In the greater scheme of things, I'm not sure if the pros outweigh the cons of such rapid communication, but that's an issue for the internet generally and if we're going to have the internet then twitter is useful. It's the ability of people to get together and talk, fact check, grapple with issues that sets it apart from one way, trust the announcer, radio (I still rate radio highly too, it's just a different thing).

          • Incognito

            Yup, battery operated, with pre-set emergency channels, which should be tested annually at the same time as the smoke alarms.

            • weka

              Do mobile phones have radio reception (distinct from internet streamed radio)? I had an ipod for a while that did.

        • weka

          I can live with it despite its flaws. It will be a real loss if Musk fucks it up so badly that NZ twitter falls apart. People were predicting that the platform itself would fail, I’m glad that hasn’t happened.

        • bwaghorn

          I just find it a chaotic mess that I struggle to follow, so don't go there, that and I already waste enough of my life online.

          • Incognito

            I hear you. I’m not on Twitter and haven’t used FB in years (and only for contacting distant friends & relatives).

  7. Incognito 9

    If it wasn’t obvious from the well-funded campaign, Wayne Brown is a puppet installed by parties with vested interests, deep pockets, and long reach. They surrounded him with minders and advisors. This was just the warm-up for installing NACT & Luxon on 14 Oct. BTW, Luxon and the Oppos have been uncharacteristically quiet lately and I think this is a smart and deliberate move.

    • bwaghorn 9.1

      I'm waiting for luxon to tell down town brown that only a prayer from the upper floor can stop the rain.

    • tWiggle 9.2

      More of a muppet than a puppet at the moment. The puppetmasters haven't got coarse control yet, let alone fine control.

  8. Red Blooded One 12

    TV1 News couldn't show the difference between Labour and National more. Carmel Sepuloni visiting People at shelters and Christopher Luxon showing his sympathy to Business only. Plus Luxons fingerprints are all over the incompetent Airport and Airline reactions. He and his ilk including the interviewed Carrie Hurahanganui ex Air NZ. That's what happens when you decimate staff and conditions of employees.

  9. weka 13

    How the 'they can assess each trans woman inmate to make sure they are safe' idea is going.

    Scott is one of only some 100 offenders in Scotland subject to an Order for Lifelong Restriction (OLR), meaning he will only be released when he is no longer considered an "unmanageable risk to public safety".

    but sure, put him in a women’s prison in the meantime 🙄

    • Visubversa 13.1

      This is the British bicentenary of the Gaols Act 1823.

      The work of the social reformer Elizabeth Fry, this landmark law mandated sex-segregated prisons with female inmates guarded by female wardens. When women were incarcerated among men, Fry observed, they were exploited, terrified and raped. She established a principle which became enshrined in international law, from UN protocols to the Geneva conventions.

      How, then, was history rewound, 200 years of evidence memory-holed, so that this week the double rapist Adam Graham was remanded in Cornton Vale women’s prison?'

  10. Incognito 14

    Just received an automated TXT message issued by Auckland Emergency Management at 7:47pm, Sunday 29 January, 2023.

    “MetService has issued an Orange Heavy Rain Warning for Auckland until 7am on Monday, due to an active line of thunderstorms.

    Et cetera.

    • Muttonbird 14.1

      Sun's out in central east Auckland.

      I do appreciate there are now people working hard and doing their job but NZ's mad, privileged culture of 'getting away for the long weekend' really hurt a lot on Friday evening.

      If anything good comes out off this it will be Brown Wayne's resignation. Would be totally happy for Desley Simpson to become mayor, and that is saying something.

      • Incognito 14.1.1

        Sun's out in central east Auckland.

        Turn down the brightness of your screen cheeky

        I think the EJ concert shambles was a distraction and confused many. You know how it is when excitement builds and there is a huge anti-climax that is so disappointing it becomes frustrating.

        I don’t think Brown will resign, narcissists never do.

        • Anne

          "I don’t think Brown will resign, narcissists never do."

          I hesitated to say so, but I think that is why he didn't issue a "State of Emergency" until it was almost over. He couldn't see the need because he wasn't affected and narcissists have no real comprehension or empathy for the effect an event might have on others.

          • Incognito

            It was not meant as a pejorative, but as an observation.

          • Muttonbird

            Good point there, Anne. Also I think he has probably created a culture of fear in the organisation just like he has in previous entities he's been involved with.

            Could be a reason AEM didn’t manage to convince the narcissist earlier in the day. Too scared of the walking dead at his desk.

            Tiger Mountain has filled us in on some of Brown's worst tendencies.

            • Anne

              I had a couple of bosses who were like Brown. People were afraid to tell them what they thought for fear of copping a backlash. Anyone who has been on the receiving end would know how very unpleasant it can be.

              • Muttonbird

                I have always been self employed. Can't stand employers because of the inherent power trip they invariably indulge in.

            • Anne

              And here's a good example:


              He said yesterday that he followed the advice of the professionals when deciding whether to declare an emergency.

              But during a visit to a community hall in Māngere today, Brown said emergency managers may have made some incorrect decisions.

              Typical narcissistic attitude. Placing all the blame on his "emergency managers". Not taking any of the responsibility himself.

  11. joe90 15

    Oh joy.

    A warmer ocean means a lot of extra fuel for storms and the atmosphere can hold increasing levels of moisture at a rate of seven percent per degree Celsius warming. With sea temperatures running over 3C above normal around parts of New Zealand, and over 1C above normal over broad regions to the north there has likely been 10 to 25 percent more moisture lurking around for storms to gather up and rain on nearby land.

  12. Ad 16

    Check this out from Joseph Mooney MP for Southland.

    A 4 minute promo. This scale and precision of editing and multiple shoots is easily over $100k of production, in my experience.

    (25) My ambitions for town and country by Joseph Mooney MP for Southland – YouTube

    Congrats to him on the high quality YouTube placement and the say-nothing-about-policy or execution message.

    Sure hope Labour MPs can meet this kind of advertorial production in the next 2 months ie before it becomes a campaign expense.

    • Muttonbird 16.1

      Far too long. Looked like the the POV got progressively more drunk as the ad went on. Probably did.

      Full of lies too. Country leaders do not want clean rivers and drinking water above personal profit.

      Hark at them gathering around the Ford Ranger at the end of the day to bitch about the Red Queen…

      • Ad 16.1.1

        Yes 50 seconds would have been better.

        Somehow we need to get Chippie into an F150 Lightning like Biden did.

  13. tWiggle 18

    There's hope yet for NZ discourse among the many. A lively and informed discussion in the comments beneath this stuff article.

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