Open mike 29/08/2019

Written By: - Date published: 7:00 am, August 29th, 2019 - 133 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post.

For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).

Step up to the mike …

133 comments on “Open mike 29/08/2019”

  1. Robert Guyton 1

    Clownish National MPs are letting the Opposition down

    "King is the worst of a number of MPs who have shown a flippancy with facts. Spin is fine in politics, but facts are facts. Facts are important. You can't campaign in a different reality.

    We trust our politicians to make big decisions. Most of the decisions they make will not be campaigned on, will arise through their terms in power, or will go unreported.

    As a farmer, King should know climate change is the biggest issue facing New Zealand agriculture, says Glenn McConnell.

    The ability, then, to know fact from fiction and to be able to understand science and reasoning is the most basic skill a politician must have. By sharing disinformation, King has exposed that he lacks this basic requirement. He must go.

    He must go, also, because his stance shows an absolute disregard for New Zealand's future. Climate change is the biggest issue facing agriculture, and the biggest challenge facing the world. He does not understand the issue.

    This blasé approach to what most people are calling a crisis is irresponsible. He, and the other politicians who are ignoring the climate crisis, are condemning future generations to food insecurity, environmental catastrophe and global economic instability. If you're an MP who hasn't caught up with this, then you are out of touch and must go."

    • I'm not even sure "spin is OK". Framing – sure. Spin is designed to prevent basic honesty and openness, to obfuscate and be frugal with the truth. It's one reason people lose faith in their representatives.

      I think we can agree though that King is a complete muppet  

      • ianmac 1.1.1

        Spin is too kind a word. The Opposition will be infamous for repeatedly straight out lying and by the time the truth is out there the damage has been done. Remember the $100,000 bottle of wine that wasn't?

    • Ed1 1.2

      Matt King only got elected because Peters and Prime split their vote – National had been declining in previous elections in Northland. We shouldn't need 'deals' like Epsom to get rid of King at the next election, but it would help if we moved to STV. . .

  2. Chris T 2

    Labour dumps renewable hydro energy plan while spouting wanting energy to be more renewable.

    Why does this not surprise me?

    Ardern's "nuclear issue" and the Greens "WW2" seems to bit more sales pitch than substance

    • Andre 2.1

      That scheme was going to add a paltry 20MW of capacity, and trash a pretty special bit of river in the conservation estate.

      Meanwhile, there's 2500MW of windfarms consented, but not yet being built due to lack of demand. At first glance, I don't see any of those requiring the trashing of part of our conservation estate.

      There's also 285MW of geothermal consented, but not yet being built due to lack of demand.

      The obstacle to turning our electricity generation 100% renewable has more to do with the way fossil generators get to dump their hazardous waste on the rest of us for free. Not going ahead with trivially small hydro schemes that carry significant environmental costs has bugger-all to do with it.

    • Robert Guyton 2.2

      "Why does this not surprise me?"

      Because, ChrisT, your views are predetermined and on top of that, you don't read for meaning or integrate new ideas into your prejudice.

      Does that help answer your question?

    • AB 2.3

      It's a bad-faith, rhetorical trick to equate 'renewable' with 'green'.  Hydro is one of the least desirable renewables because it trashes natural ecosystems. A very useful technology historically, but not the future.

      • greywarshark 2.3.1


      • weka 2.3.2


      • Poission 2.3.3

        Historical technology was (and is) often very clever and simple.Solutions were often very cheap.


      • New view 2.3.4

        There’s no middle ground or compromise with people with your thought process. If you look hard enough the pursuit of energy will trash something. Whether it’s the sea the wind farm, the river, the nuclear waste. There has to be middle here. The massive impact that the Manapouri Dam had on the landscape has recovered over time. The difference these days is our ability to be a lot thoughtful with the way these projects are instigated. 

        • weka

          None of the South Island rivers that I'm aware of that have been dammed have recovered, and certainly not the Waiau.

          The whole point of dams is that they give control of water flows to humans, who then manage then in highly destructive ways without much regard for the ecology of the river. Hydro dams being opened for lots of power generation produce tornado like effects in the river itself for the things that live in the river. I think the issues with the Waiau are related to low flow and the river having lost its 20,000 year old capacity to respond to changes in water coming out of two lakes. The Manapouri scheme would never be allowed today and let's not forget that the huge damage that would have come from raising the lake was prevented by environmentalists. 


          • New view

            The river flows can be controlled. Any new Dam would would have strict controls. The Manapouri Dam wouldn’t have been built now as you say. But I can’t see why not. No body travelling around that area complains what a tragedy it is. When travellers drive past these lakes they don’t comment how ugly they are. They are part of a new beautiful landscape. The areas were   wonderful landscapes before and are now. Just different. The North Island  would be an underdeveloped wilderness without SI power. Unless you burn coal that is. Put up enough wind turbines and all the visual pollution people will come out of the woodwork. There must be compromise. 

            • Dukeofurl

              Thats rewriting history. Manapouri was an existing lake it wasnt created  by people.  The lake level is only controlled. Thats way it 'looks good' , but hey its not just about views for people who drive past

              For  the original project  they did propose  to  RAISE the lake level, and rightly that created an almighty storm.

            • weka

              I lament the Waiau every time I see it.

              Very picturesque×400.1ijx2e.png/1492472129311.jpg

              Compromise involves understanding where the limits are. I just wrote a whole post about this, you can read it if you like. There are no good reasons to keep damming rivers in NZ. We don't have to keep growing exponentially, and we will be forced to stop soon anyway because of climate change.

              What we are talking about here is NZ's excessive usage of power. We could be conserving power and working within our limits. There's still compromise there, but small scale wind has a distinctly different impact than what happens to rivers when we dam them. It's not so much about visual pleasure, although that's an issue in some ways, it's about the impact on the river itself. Meaning the entity, perhaps what you think of as the beauty, as well as all the life that exists because of the river.

            • weka

              I'm guessing you're not familiar with Manapouri and the Waiau. It's not a Manapouri dam, it's a system across two lakes, a river, a mountain and a fiord. The mountain has two tailraces built under it to drop water from Manapouri to the sea. To control that they built two control dams at the outlets of Lakes Manapouri and Te Anau. The Waiau drains out of Manapouri, and because they want Manapouri to flow under the mountain instead, the Waiau river is kept abnormally low. This affects the whole river right to the sea.

              Algae build up is an issue, and this will become more so as water temperatures increase with climate change.


              • New view

                Nice description of the project Weka, but don’t assume too much. I traveled up the river from TeAnau to Manapouri before the project was started around 1964. 

    • weka 2.4

      There's a post up about this /why-we-save-rivers

    • Bearded Git 2.5

      Too simplistic by far Chris T.

      See the comments, including mine, on the dedicated post for this issue.

  3. dv 3

    Solar, wind, tidal and wave motion as energy sources.

  4. Yorick 4

    Alas, poor England .. burdened by imperial fantasies after the fall of Singapore .. or should that be Hong Kong ?  

    • Peter Christchurch NZ 4.1

      Or Alas, poor China, burdened by imperial fantasies in Taiwan, Xinjiang, Xiazang (Tibet), Nei Mongolia (Inner Mongolia). The largest empire on earth today is the Chinese empire.

      Sorry, I forgot. Only white people are racists, colonialists and imperialists.

      • greywarshark 4.1.1

        Oh FGS.   Sorry, I expect people to be able to voice reasonable opinions of their own that are backed by facts without having some PC person criticise because the comment touches on one of their particular sensitivities.   It is where free speech is needed, with cool analysis and telling it like it is, without belabouring the point beyond reason.

    • greywarshark 4.2

      News – QE2 has sunk to depths uncharted.    Salvage by PC is unlikely because of the state of the wreck.    A vicissitude of Titanic proportions; it reminds me of the German state making Hitler the Chancellor.

      Why did not the Queen insist, in her precise, measuring way, that it seems unconstitutional to have Parliament in abeyance when there were concerns for the country that are of extreme importance to be thoroughly discussed before finality?

      • The Al1en 4.2.2

        May I suggest if you are going to persist in commentating on the UK and brexit, you undertake a little research, so others don't have to keep posting how wrong you are most of the time.

        It would have been impossible for the Queen to turn down the prime minister's request, our royal correspondent Jonny Dymond writes.

        The Queen acts on the advice of her prime minister.

        While many, many people may be upset that Parliament is not going to sit at such time, precedent is on the side of those making this decision.

        The idea is these things are settled in the Palace of Westminster, not Buckingham Palace.

        The Queen had very little wriggle room to make any kind of political decision.

        • greywarshark

          May I suggest that you butt out from dropping in on other's comments with total derision and stop playing the superior pedant.    What I have said will echo what many people think.   

          I myself consider this so important that the Queen, if boxed in by convention or even law, should have pushed it aside and done her duty to all the people of the UK.   She put up with Thatcher and to let Johnson and Co. have their way was cowardice despite what advisors might say.    She won't keep royalty high in people's allegiance by letting the country go further to the dogs.   It is a time of face-off against the barons and merchants of coming doom, and perhaps she is too old for the job.

          • The Al1en

            No need to get hurt, it's just a simple request for you to actually find out a miniscule amount of information about the subject you intend to post on, before you actually do it. Clearly this didn't work second time around either @ 🙄

          • Peter Christchurch NZ

            Greywarshark, you do not seem to understand the role of the Queen in the UK.

            Even if she wanted to, she could not have have 'pushed it aside…'. Likewise, she had to put up with Thatcher, Blair et al. The Queen is just a figurehead, bound by the constitution. She MUST defer to her Ministers, almost without exception.

            What you are proposing is little short of a royalist revolution, and certainly against the laws of Great Britain, laws that have taken centuries of struggle to wrest the power from an unelected elite. 

            Whether you realize it or not, you are proposing that the clock of political freedom be turned back by around 400 years.

            • greywarshark

              So now the power is with the elected elite.   You people are so unthinking.    Everything is changing in the world.   The elected government lies to the people who vote according to the lie, and then find out too late, but a slight majority that has been received is enough apparently to start the dissolution of what remains of the marvellous democracy that you are wetting your pants about.   So many lies.    Tony Blair and WMD so war.    Defending that should bring a red blush to your cheek.

              The USA is the same – quoting its founding documents for authority of just about everything it does, just by twisting the words away from their intention at the time it was drawn up.   It no longer stands as the rules for a fine nation, rather as a blind for the use of a magician practising legerdemain.

              And the clock is being turned around as we watch, and going back to times we hoped would never return.     All the checks and balances produced have been invalidated by complacency, wilful ignorance and assertion of entitlement.   We can do this because we are right and they are wrong, and undeserving.  

              The ability for a UK government to move on any referendum should have been put in block capitals in the statutes or whatever to be 80 for 20 against.    I think that would allow for a telling majority against those who would not budge.    All these words in laws etc are just that. and they can be misread, badly administered different from the intent; they aren't unchanging.    Humans created them, and if on close scrutiny, they are found to be confusing or misunderstood, they can be changed, and honest, principled people would change them.

              • Peter Christchurch NZ

                'Defending Tony Blair and WMD war'?  Hmm, comprehension: E – fail.

              • The Al1en

                In the UK, since it became a constitutional monarchy, the power has always been in the hands of the elected elite. Politicians can lie, make or break promises, get elected then unelected. Welcome to democracy.

                Can't you just admit you didn't have a clue and move on?

                • Dukeofurl

                  The real effect of what Johnson has done is this:

                  " three days of Parliamentary sittings will be lost in the week after the party conferences. Let me just repeat that – three days 8, 9 and 10 of October."

                  A new PM having  a new session of parliament with  a Speech from the Throne …thats all . Remember hes only been PM for   a month. ( 24th July)

          • Climaction

            ”what I have said will resonate…” trumpian, and completely plays to the point the Al1en was making. 

      • Dukeofurl 4.2.3

        Because the Queen does what the PM asks for …thats what their system is about.

        Maybe the Speaker should go back to his  'strictly neutral' role  before the Queen disregards the 'advice' of the PM.

        Two things you forget.

        1) MPs would in recess  for 3 weeks anyway as Sept is  'party conference time'

        2) This 'session of parliament'   begun back in  2017 , prorogation ends it for a new  one  in October.

      • Dukeofurl 4.2.4

        get over your nonsense

        "reminds me of the German state making Hitler the Chancellor."


        • greywarshark

          You have the imagination and forethought of a goldfish Dukeofurl.

          • Dukeofurl

            Look what happened  in Canada – that well known facist dictatorship-after the Harper minority government in 2008 prorogued  parliament just after an election when the were facing losing a vote of no confidence and  new government from the opposition parties.

            The prorogation was for  2 months  not 2 weeks.

            Much hot air at the time , but life went on.

            Some people seem to substitute  muddy waters overseas as an excuse to paddle furiously in them. I suppose it gives meaning to an empty life.

            Dont forget its the height of European newspapers 'silly season', but only this time only the cricket is  being taken seriously


          • Climaction

            yet you’ve rolled in with nothing but fake news.

            Progressively, brexit is a nightmare pandering to little Britain. from an environmentalist POV its a god send as it puts the brakes on goods moving round using carbon emssions as they are too easy to tax and prevents people movement with the same benefit. 

  5. greywarshark 5

    Ross Meurant is not a well-rounded figure.   In his comment he presents his Right side, but look further on and there is no left;   just a cardboard facsimile of someone who has learned a bit in life, just enough to sometimes sound like a thinking human.    But of course there are many like him around; it is a mast year.

  6. cleangreen 6

    Matt King would kill our environnemnt as he can't even say climate change is real So this is our press release. CEAC supports Tribunal criticism of crown freshwater failures Press release from Citizens Environmental Advocacy centre. 29th August 2019. Recent Radio NZ press release covering the Waitangi Tribunal freshwater failures hearings (seen here in this link below) shows a lack of over years of Crown awareness of another “elephant in the room” regarding how other sources of pollution of our freshwater is now seriously been contaminated badly, and shows that the crown over the last 11 years has not used the RMA to protect our degrading water quality, so we wholeheartedly support the tightening of provisions in the RMA to protect our whole natural and built environment to protect everyone in our precious environment. Regarding the “elephant in the room” being the not previously considered by the crown; – let us clarify; Recently on (Thursday, 22 August 2019) our centre (Citizens Environmental Advocacy Centre, ‘CEAC’ ) discussed this issue of ‘road pollution runoff’ as the “elephant in the room” in a press release – see in this link below; Quote; We at CEAC believe ‘this is the elephant in the room now’ as we already know from the ‘NZ Ministry of Transport’ documented studies from the 2002 report entitled “Emission Factors for Contaminants Released from Motor Vehicles in NZ” Fuels and Energy Management Group December 2002. That report shows that tyre particulates have many toxic chemicals that are known to be harmful to humans. These are already found to be freely released in the tyre dust as we drive and are then washed off our roads into our drains, streams, rivers, lakes and aquifers, and finally into our drinking water, so we are part of the problem already now. EV vehicles will still emit the same tyre dust toxins as regular gasoline vehicles do. The new scientific German report ‘Raining plastic’ – QUOTE “fragments of rubber tyres”. Un-Quote; So now we see the ‘Transmission Gully’ mega NZTA roading project has been found to be causing the “silt build-up now chocking the nearby coastal estuaries and causing very long term serious damage to the life of all aquatic species including kai moana which is the tāonga – life-blood of Māori Iwi/hapu. Bluntly; the RMA definitely failed us all here especially over the ‘loosely controlled’ activities of the road builder NZTA; We quote; Presiding officer Chief Judge Wilson Isaac; "The RMA has allowed a serious degradation of water quality to occur in many ancestral water bodies, which are now in a highly vulnerable state," he said. “RMA did not provide adequately for the tino rangatiratanga and the kaitiakitanga of iwi and hapū over their freshwater tāonga.” CEAC believes NZTA must be “heavily regulated” by having the Ministry of health, Ministry of the Environment and the Ministry of Transport along with the Government stepping in here and placing ‘new controls over the road builder going forwards’ now so NZTA actually comply with strict regulatory rules to protect all those living near their roads in future. From this time forward we expect to see serious care and consideration be written into the RMA to stop the widespread pollution and emissions of ‘air and water carrying pollution’ and ‘road- runoff‘ being washed of NZTA roads and carried through air pollution from tyre wear from tyre dust and exhaust emissions from over use activities of heavy truck freight particularly. We at CEAC have always advocated for widespread use of rail, as an environmentally friendly transport system and with national party policy of overuse of ‘freight trucks’ on our regional roads is now destroying our ‘natural/coastal and built’ residential environments alike and endangering our health and wellbeing. Secretary. CEAC.

    • Yorick 6.1

      Um, yeah. Can you give us the gist ?

      • Bearded Git 6.1.1

        smileyExactly Yorick…I seldom read long posts.

        • greywarshark

          It's a thoughtful and detailed post from Cleangreen with research and study from the Gisborne group? for a long time as they have looked at rail and road and assessed their costs and benefits.

          I thought it would be good to know what it's all about so have put it into paragraphs for readability and hope this is satisfactory.  It would be unfortunate if the work in writing it was not matched by useful knowledge gained from it.

          Matt King would kill our environnemnt as he can't even say climate change is real So this is our press release. CEAC supports Tribunal criticism of crown freshwater failures Press release from Citizens Environmental Advocacy centre. 29th August 2019.

          Recent Radio NZ press release covering the Waitangi Tribunal freshwater failures hearings (seen here in this link below) shows a lack of over years of Crown awareness of another “elephant in the room” regarding how other sources of pollution of our freshwater is now seriously been contaminated badly, and shows that the crown over the last 11 years has not used the RMA to protect our degrading water quality, so we wholeheartedly support the tightening of provisions in the RMA to protect our whole natural and built environment to protect everyone in our precious environment.

          Regarding the “elephant in the room” being the not previously considered by the crown; – let us clarify; Recently on (Thursday, 22 August 2019) our centre (Citizens Environmental Advocacy Centre, ‘CEAC’ ) discussed this issue of ‘road pollution runoff’ as the “elephant in the room” in a press release – see in this link below;

          Quote; We at CEAC believe ‘this is the elephant in the room now’ as we already know from the ‘NZ Ministry of Transport’ documented studies from the 2002 report entitled “Emission Factors for Contaminants Released from Motor Vehicles in NZ” Fuels and Energy Management Group December 2002.

          That report shows that tyre particulates have many toxic chemicals that are known to be harmful to humans. These are already found to be freely released in the tyre dust as we drive and are then washed off our roads into our drains, streams, rivers, lakes and aquifers, and finally into our drinking water, so we are part of the problem already now. EV vehicles will still emit the same tyre dust toxins as regular gasoline vehicles do.

          The new scientific German report ‘Raining plastic’ – QUOTE “fragments of rubber tyres”. Un-Quote; So now we see the ‘Transmission Gully’ mega NZTA roading project has been found to be causing the “silt build-up now chocking the nearby coastal estuaries and causing very long term serious damage to the life of all aquatic species including kai moana which is the tāonga – life-blood of Māori Iwi/hapu.

          Bluntly; the RMA definitely failed us all here especially over the ‘loosely controlled’ activities of the road builder NZTA; We quote; Presiding officer Chief Judge Wilson Isaac; "The RMA has allowed a serious degradation of water quality to occur in many ancestral water bodies, which are now in a highly vulnerable state," he said. “RMA did not provide adequately for the tino rangatiratanga and the kaitiakitanga of iwi and hapū over their freshwater tāonga.”

          CEAC believes NZTA must be “heavily regulated” by having the Ministry of health, Ministry of the Environment and the Ministry of Transport along with the Government stepping in here and placing ‘new controls over the road builder going forwards’ now so NZTA actually comply with strict regulatory rules to protect all those living near their roads in future.

          From this time forward we expect to see serious care and consideration be written into the RMA to stop the widespread pollution and emissions of ‘air and water carrying pollution’ and ‘road- runoff‘ being washed of NZTA roads and carried through air pollution from tyre wear from tyre dust and exhaust emissions from over use activities of heavy truck freight particularly.

          We at CEAC have always advocated for widespread use of rail, as an environmentally friendly transport system and with national party policy of overuse of ‘freight trucks’ on our regional roads is now destroying our ‘natural/coastal and built’ residential environments alike and endangering our health and wellbeing. Secretary. CEAC.


          • Andre

            That "Gisborne group?" appears to consist of cleangreen and one or two of his family members. I've had more than just a cursory look online, and the only names I've ever seen associated with CEAC have been either cleangreen's IRL name or someone sharing the same surname. I believe the term for that is "astroturfing".

            Apart from calling Matt King names and the link to the Waitangi Tribunal statement, the rest looks like just a repaste of the same stuff cleangreen pastes here over and over ad nauseum.


            • greywarshark

              What the hell?   Why are you kicking over Cleangreen and what the ginger group call themselves.   Some of you are such a nasty negative lot.     You don't seem interested in advancing and helping NZs, talking about ideas, exchanging info etc. and getting together with others to get us out of the hole we are in.  

              You just want to sit in negative judgment and do nothing useful, indeed actually destroy spirit.    I find you despicable Andre in 6 111…    You are ad nauseum big time.

              • Dukeofurl

                Exchanging ideas…is that what you call your endless  snippets of nothing.

                In the real world its called concern trolling …perhaps someone should show you how on Twitter and Facebook . They would love your work

                • greywarshark

                  In the real world dukeofurl you are swamping the blog with your negatives.   Preventing discussion.     I don't know what your other blog sites call it, have you nothing else to do except push your dislike of fellow citizens with sneers and supposed superior information which is usually not accompanied by sources.

        • Wensleydale

          It's not so much the length, it's more the lack of paragraphs. White space is your friend.

      • Puckish Rogue 6.1.2

        Matt King bad, rail good.

        • Peter Christchurch NZ

          Sometimes rail is efficient, othertimes woefully not.

          Using a truck to, say, take stock from a farm near Oxford in Canterbury to the Freezing works in Christchurch is hugely more efficient and environmentally friendly compared to what used to happen there, where a truck took it to the Oxford railhead, then railed to ChCh, then shunted around back to Belfast. In almost all rural cases, rail is environmentally inferior to road.

          Rail is great for point to point, and particularly for bulk freight. Less so for small consignments and seldom at all for non point to point.

          • Puckish Rogue

            Agreed, NZ is unfortunately too small for the kind of rail most people would like. Having said that I wouldn't mind seeing more rail used, where it makes sense to use it

            • bwaghorn

              I've been to Auckland and Wellington in the last few months and would have jumped a train in both cases in ohakune if there was a morning and evening daily service.  (I did jump on the train at paraparaumu for the welly trip. )

          • KJT

            That is more to do with the lack of money invested in extending the rail network, compared with mega billions spent on roads, rather than relative efficiency.

            • Peter Christchurh nz

              Partly at least.  At least this government has given rail a chance.

    • we don't celebrate the invention of the paragraph – anywhere near enough….

  7. Puckish Rogue 7

    So Michael Moores latest production: Planet of the Humans could see him excommunicated, crucified and vilified by the left.

    Interesting to see how well it does 

    • weka 7.1

      Planet of the Humans dares to say what no one will—that we are losing the battle to stop climate change because we are following environmental leaders who have taken us down the wrong road—selling out the green movement to wealthy interests and corporate America.

      Um, lots of people have been saying this for a long time. It's hardly controversial. That situation (green tech BAU) is a consequence of right wing and neoliberal control. Criticising it is entirely within the purview of the left. I just wrote about it in the Saving our Rivers post. Although tbf, I also criticised the traditional left for its long held position of jobs before nature.

      • Puckish Rogue 7.1.1

        Sure but there's also one heckuva lot of people that see the climate change movement as an almost religious movement so Michael may well see himself cast in a new light, that of the betrayer of the faith

        I however am doing my part by trading in my older SUV for a 2019 diesel ute and our older car for 2019 small hatchback and yes I'm feeling quite virtuous because they're much better for the environment especially compared to electric vehicles angel

        • adam

          Feeling virtuous by having a car – what a flop. devil

          • Puckish Rogue

            By upgrading I'll be using less fossil fuels and diesel is better for the environment so yeah we all gotta play our part no matter how small that part is angel

            Maybe something Greta Thunberg (or her father) might have liked to consider:


            'The sailing team that's taking climate activist Greta Thunberg from England to the United States aboard a high-tech racing yacht says it will fly two crew across the Atlantic to bring the boat back, but that the carbon emissions from their flights will be compensated for.' wink

            • weka

              why didn't you buy an EV?

              • Puckish Rogue

                Numerous reasons but among them is the reliance of rare earth metals, not always having access to a charger, modern engines being far more efficient then ever before, not sure of how many mechanics are qualified to work on electric vehicles, petrol and diesel easier to source and finally the price

                • weka

                  the charger one is an issue for me too, but none of the EVs are affordable to me so I don't have to make the decision yet.

                  • Puckish Rogue

                    The range and how long it takes to charge are issues as well

                    • weka

                      Yep. I'm ok with changing my behaviour around those things (we're all going to have to do that eventually so may as well get used to it), but I'm not sure the rural South Island is there yet for making it feasible. I wonder how the AA are handling this.

                    • Dukeofurl

                      I read somewhere that EV have in their GPS system all charging locations ( regular updates)

                      You pop in your destination, it looks at the distance and likely speed etc ,  reads the existing charge  in the batteries and  will ROUTE you via the suitable charging spots to enable the journey to complete. This was for the UK where there are 1000s of chargers now- as many public chargers as  petrol/diesel service stations ( each station would have multiple pumps though)

                    • weka

                      betting that doesn't work in NZ with Japanese imports which are programmed for Japan.

                    • Puckish Rogue

                      It would be ok as a town car but you wouldn't want to trust it taking to the more rural areas of NZ


                      'The time it takes to charge an electric car can be as little as 30 minutes or more than 12 hours. This depends on the size of the battery and the speed of the charging point. A typical electric car(60kWh battery) takes just under 8 hours to charge from empty-to-full with a 7kW charging point.'

                    • weka

                      Map of charging points. Green are public, orange are fast charge.


                    • Puckish Rogue

                      Thats a lot more than I thought but price is still a major factor, maybe when I look to replace this car I'll look at an ev

                    • weka

                      some of those might be pending. I tend to last about a decade with a car, so by the time I'm looking for the next one both the cars and the charging points will have changed significantly. If I had enough money I'd probably do it now and make it work.

            • adam

              wow really missed the point – must be a tory thing…

        • weka

          yeah, nah. The climate movement isn't a monolith, but for instance in NZ, mainstream orgs that have been leading the way on climate action (Greenpeace, Green Party) are full of people who know the score about green BAU and greenwashing. Those orgs have been forced into taking a middle of the road approach, because of deniers and people dragging the chain.

          Lots of the movement is outside of the US too.


        • Psycho Milt

          …there's also one heckuva lot of people that see the climate change movement as an almost religious movement…

          Most of them right-wingers who think AGW is a hoax. Those guys seem more inclined to cheer Moore on when it comes to this movie, because they don't understand the difference between environmentalism and greenwashing.

    • Gabby 7.2

      So why puckers?

  8. joe90 8

    When you lose the FT..

  9. weka 9

    Chris Trotter just wrote a piece imagining if Jacinda Ardern died, apparently as a way of commemorating Big Norm's death anniversary and making the point that… I'm not sure what exactly, something about the gloss coming off?

    It's at TDB if you want to read it. Weird. 'We really hope it doesn't happen, but let's now speculate if it does', it's all a bit Daily Mail.


    • Dukeofurl 9.1

      He never really got over Women leading the labour party- somehow its not 'industrial' as in freezing works  and coal mines and cloth caps

      • Peter Christchurch NZ 9.1.1

        I seldom take any notice of what Chris Trotter says. He just likes to drone on and on and make constant references to obscure and totally irrelevant classical myths. Just a silly old borish dinasaur really.

        I see he writes now for the BFD (and before that for Whaleoils Incite). Clearly happy to associate with anyone who will give him oxygen, no matter how criminal, hypocritical or thuggish.

  10. joe90 10

    Novel way of getting around those damn campaign finance laws.


    Federal Election Commission Vice Chairman Matthew Petersen announced his resignation today. 

    This means the agency that enforces and regulates the nation’s campaign finance laws will effectively shut down — something that hasn’t happened since 2008 — because it won’t have the legal minimum of four commissioners to make high-level decisions.

    Petersen’s resignation, first reported by the Washington Examiner, will throw the FEC into turmoil for weeks — and perhaps months — as the nation enters the teeth of 2020 presidential and congressional elections.

    For now, the FEC can’t conduct meetings.

    It can’t slap political scofflaws with fines.

    It can’t make rules.

    It can’t conduct audits and approve them.

    It can’t vote on the outcome of investigations.

  11. Dukeofurl 11

    When you lose the FT..
    That doesnt say what you/Sheppard  claim at all.

    They just say  "for ardent remainers and Liberal democrats, THEY may also require a Corbyn caretaker government."

    There isnt going to be a 'Corbyn caretaker governmen't , but the next 2 weeks means they can try. Its not Australia where the  Governor General can dismiss the PM ( as per their written constitution)


    • Dukeofurl 11.1

      Just checked the full FT editorial and I was wrong about the snippet.

      Then again the FT has been  pro remain  and anti any sort of Brexit, so it figures 

      • Dukeofurl 11.1.1

        That Outrager- in- chief Blair  used to  regularly prorogue parliament for   12 weeks.

        But how times change , anything about leaving the EU is  now all sorts of incendiary  words,  even Boris adding 3 sitting days to the  September break

        The Speech from the Throne , after debate, can be voted down by a majority and thats when Johnsons government would fall. Thats the usual process to  get rid  of him.

  12. Kay 12

    I met a real live climate change denier 🙁

    Being given a lift home, we got covered in diesel fumes from an ancient 'temporary replacement' bus in front of us. I lamented the loss of the trolley buses on that route, and how the GWRC  STILL haven't even bothered getting us the promised electric bus replacements. 

    I've never had a fellow Wellingtonian disagree with that assessment of things until now. What I got from this lady, I wonder if she watches Fox in her down time. "I don't believe in this Global warming nonsense…it's a natural occurring phenomena….giant con job….all about businesses making money….that thing in Tuvalu recently, that was a con…."etc etc

    I didn't even bother responding, reacting or anything. She's an elderly lady (and no, I am not for one moment making generalisations!) and I really don't think it was possible to have a civil debate on the matter. It was was extremely upsetting though. Of course I know they exist but sometimes I rather not know who they are. 

    • Dukeofurl 12.1

      Did you wonder why the Greens get 6% and the national party gets 43%.

      She seemed to be at the extreme end  but a lot of voters  are in  the mild  climate change category, because they are older ( grew up in a period when nuclear war seemed almost certain, but wasnt) or  seen  more adversity than millennials who  are addicted to  mobile devices.

    • Peter Christchurch NZ 12.2

      Yes, but part of the reason for the cynicism is due to the ludicrous doomsday prophecies of the last 25 years, and the hypocrisy of many of those pushing an often self serving barrow. 

      Al Gore springs immediately to mind, but he is but one. It is down to these people that the reality of climate change is not more widely accepted.

    • Wensleydale 12.3

      People have bizarre and irrational viewpoints all the time. I wouldn't let it upset you. At the end of the day you've got to have a chuckle, because if you didn't laugh at the state of the world you'd probably throw yourself off a building. Whenever I find myself railing at the television, my kids remind me that the television isn't a person, the people on the television can't actually hear me, and I should probably calm down and go make a cup of tea. Kids are clever like that.

      • Incognito 12.3.1


        … the people on the television can't actually hear me …

        Not so sure about this; it is becoming more common to hack smart TVs and other devices that control your life, including the camera …

        Even Apple’s Siri conversations can be overheard and recorded …

        Some people think that IoT is something to look forward to but to others it is more like a dystopian near—future.

      • Kay 12.3.2

        @Wens, very true! I'm almost over the shock of the encounter now. What can one do but laugh at some people. It's (almost) a shame she won't be around to experience the fruits of her denial, living as she does right on Lyall Bay. Although with that sort of extremism I'd imagine the more frequent inundations, coastal erosion, extreme storm surges etc, it would all be 'naturally occurring'

        • Dukeofurl

          Lyall Bay ?

          While the waves on Lyall Bay beach are great for surfing, they are anything but ideal for infrastructure. On September 16, 1916, the Evening Post reported on a southerly depression, which was responsible for exceptionally high tides. Seawater crossed Lyall Parade and reached well over the road. Marine debris was spread across the parade.

          Sea storms and surges are an annual event on Lyall Parade. But resident Suzi Wilson isn’t worried about tsunamis.

          “Winter time is when the sea washes up on to the road. Logs end up all over the footpath.” She has developed a passion for collecting shells and debris washed up on the beach since moving to the parade five years ago. She displays her collection inside and outside of her home.

          The first life-saving clubhouse was washed away in a storm only a few months after being built by Wellington City Council in 1910. "
          The current 2018 building replaced a 1957 one and maybe a new building after 1910 one was destroyed and then replaced in 1957.
          Maybe living by the seaside with large waves has made that lady more resiliant

  13. mac1 13

    There is a picture on page 4 of the 28 August Blenheim Sun  family advised me of.  It shows a Year 13  form photo in which a large lad in centre picture holds a baby.

    Shades of the Trevor Mallard Effect. It is now allowable for young men to be pictured proudly and happily dandling babies. The opposite to 'toxic masculinity"!


    • If there's something to be proud of about making a baby while you're still in school, I'm not sure what it would be.

      • mac1 13.1.1

        Psycho Milt, the baby is that of his form teacher. He is not the father, just as Speaker Mallard is not the father of the children he dandled while in the Speaker's chair.

        Turn the page to page four!

  14. bwaghorn 14

    Thankyou thankyou thankyou. 

    Good words from Shaw and co . 


  15. Exkiwiforces 15

    Well well, someone is telling porky pies now and I don’t trust either side on who is telling the truth or who is talking a load of bollocks.

    The only part that is right is the supply line from Darwin to ET did crash 7 times in the first 2 to 3mths from memory. As our Rifle Flight was on 24hr E ration packs for 21days straight and which almost sent us Trop’o or native and it was quicker to get boots, bog roll  etc via the mailman than via the supply chain.

    Ah the joys of INTERFET, the good, the bad and the ugly.


    • Dukeofurl 15.1

      Interesting.   Wondering about  comparing Timor Leste with Hong Kong in the current unrest.

      Its the same but different.  Murderous gangs supported by the government …that could be a method the Beijing government  could use  as 'plausible denial' in the way China does  and no one believes them  ..the US has this problem too.

    • Agora 15.2

      Re. "My memories of .."

      What's new ? 

  16. Yorick 16

    Polly Toynbee: "A civil war state of mind now threatens our democracy"

    "Boris Johnson’s assault on parliament is unprecedented, but he can – and must – be stopped

    "This country that self-identified so smugly as stable, tolerant and moderate, with a crown to symbolise traditions honed down the centuries, is revealed as fissile, fragile and ferociously divided. A constitution that relied on gentlemanly governments’ willingness to bow to parliament has evaporated, blown away now it’s led by a man who doesn’t give a damn for parliamentary sovereignty: taking back control is for him alone. He is ready to destroy anything that threatens his ambition."
    I asked Bob Kerslake, former head of the civil service, where their duty lies in this unprecedented situation.

    We are reaching the point where the civil service must consider putting its stewardship of the country ahead of service to the government of the day,” he said. That is a devastating verdict."



    Open mike 29/08/2019

    • Dukeofurl 16.1


      Parliament has lost only 3 sitting  days  because of the prorogation ended the longest session of parliament  since the 1600s.

      After the Queens Speech , Mps can vote against it and if they have a majority Johnson has to resign.

      Thats parliament doing what its always done.

      Did the Remain diehards  and the Guardian  elite really think they and Bercow were going to twist all the rules to suit their agenda like they have been doing ?

      • Gabby 16.1.1

        HeHeHe's clearly limiting the ability of Parliament to thwart his vile plot Dooky. Three days or thirty isn't the point.

        • greywarshark

          Latest on Brexit and Boorish.  David Townsend refers to Johnson 'smirking' which seems apt.  (* David Townsend is an ex-UK Parliamentary Labour candidate, a former Labour ministerial speech writer and special adviser and contributor to The Guardian, The Independent and The Times.)

          Johnson himself claims his action is to enable his government to present its policies on matters such as education, law and order and health spending in a Queen's Speech. Inevitably his pomposity and smirking appearance making the announcement means few will believe him. His decision is likely to be challenged in the courts by MPs and others.


          With Prime Minister Johnson's October 31st deadline of leaving the EU with or without a "deal", the reassembly of Parliament on the 14th October leaves only a limited time for opposition MPs to produce legislation to stop a "no deal" exit. It is clear the Speaker of the Commons – who was not consulted by Johnson on this timetable – would assist MPs in their opposition to a "no deal".

          When Parliament reassembles next week before being pro-rogued the options open to oppose are really limited. A no confidence motion in the government might succeed but only if sufficient Conservative MPs are prepared to bring down the Johnson government and probably be de-selected as Conservative candidates in an ensuing election. Or if selected again lose their seats.,,,

          And what of the EU? Dismay at the staggering ineptitude of the oldest democracy in Europe is most commonly reflected in the European media. The third PM in the UK in three years and still no consensus. A Parliament that rejected three times the painstakingly negotiated deal with the EU by the last prime minister.

          The EU is obliged to wait on events and ask the UK as it has over the last three years to be clear about what it wants and then discuss what it can reasonably expect, given the EU is a body of 27 nations with political and economic shared interests and not the local golf club.

        • Dukeofurl

          Do try to keep up….

          Boris wants to leave  under the Deal – with backstop removed.

          Thats not a vile plot. EU wont budge until the  it can see the remainers in parliament have been royally screwed.

          EU always  wants to thwart any  referendum  that goes against them ….happened many times Norway is  good example- voted 2x against but they are  stuck in EU web

          In Denmark, two referendums were held before the treaty of Maastricht passed. The first one rejected the treaty.

          Ireland had 2 referendums to  finally get Treaty of Nice approved

          France and Netherlands voted against 2005  European Constitution but  the EU just changed the rules in a different way to thwart the  anti votes

          Again the Irish  had to have a 2nd vote  after they first rejected Treaty of Lisbon

  17. Exkiwiforces 17

    Good to this RNZN/ MOD project is slowly getting some traction, since the two inservice  OPV’s are no longer fit for purpose for Southern Ocean Patrols due to the changing environment in the Southern Ocean as a result of CC, which nearly seen  one of the OPV’s capsized last year or the year before on a run down Sth. 

    The story goes that Ronnie was up on the bridge at time, where he went white as sheet, Ms Sage was down the back chatting with the DoC staff, the boffins (one of my cousins was on that trip for his PhD) and the film crew when the OPV got smacked with shit flying about/ rolling all over the place, and the other cousin who is in the Jack Tar’s as a cook was on duty having a shit of time the galley when the OPV got smacked.

    The Civilians including Ms Sage weren’t told about what happened or how close to Davie Jones locker they were until they returned back to NZ, as it happened about 3/4 mark on the trip down Sth to the Auckland or Campbell Islands which ever is the furthest.

    There is talk at various levels that this new SOPV with possibly one or two of the IPV’s maybe based in Dunedin/ Port Chamlers if the Odt is anything to go by. (Sorry don’t have the link for that one).

    • Dukeofurl 17.1

      Land lubbers always think rough weather is 'almost capsize'. 

      Im guessing this is just another unfunded project on someones wish list. RNZN  doesnt need it and  the funding wishing well is depleted by gold plating on  recent purchases such as  Poseidon and new Hercs (  used RAF ones of the latest J model  would be fine!)

  18. Adrian 18

    What a farce! Greta Thunberg has sailed into New York to be greeted by her parents who FLEW there, no doubt accompanied by her PR team of God knows how many.

    This makes a complete mockery of the message which I suspect in time will turn out to be a money making scam orchestrated by her father if various reports are to be believed.

    Engineering wise the boat she sailed on uses considerably more construction material per person per kilometre than the aircraft her parents used. It may use wind but it still has a marine engine of some size.

    • Robert Guyton 18.1

      Greta travelled by sailboat. The rest is immaterial. Everything can be challenged and criticised but Greta didn't fly, she spent 2 weeks aboard a sailboat; stop belly-aching and put your energy into something useful. Criticising the actions of a 16 year-old girl is kinda…silly.

      • SHG 18.1.1

        The sailing team that's taking climate activist Greta Thunberg from England to the United States aboard a high-tech racing yacht says it will fly two crew across the Atlantic to bring the boat back

      • Adrian 18.1.2

        It's the action of her parents I'm criticising , she is almost certainly the product of a very sophisticated rort. Pretty much any other child and a competent school essay can be spun into this sort of  media personality with the aid of the type of public relations professionals that her father has engaged. It's bullshit. That boat was organised months and months ago.

        • Puckish Rogue

          Yeah its not good, heres a young woman with depression and mental health issues being pushed into the spotlight big time 

          I mean its not like young people thrust into the spotlight at an early age ever end up regretting it (yeah sarcasm)

          Her parents should be taking a long, hard look at themselves over this

        • McFlock

          She's not too far wrong, though.

          A bit of planning, lateral thinking, and community suggestions, and we can find alternatives to the things we now burn fossils on.

          Yes, it was a symbolic act. Tokenistic, even. Lots of fodder for the people who hate change. But now people are arguing about alternatives to flying everywhere for conferences, so… not a bad thing, overall.

      • In Vino 18.1.4

        True, Robert.  Because if she had flown, the simpletons on the Right would all have screamed, "Hypocrite!"  – their empty, unthinking response.  Because she has not flown, they cannot do that.

        For more normal people, it is facile to insist that anyone who preaches that burning fossil fuels should be reduced should never ever in their lives ever again benefit from any atom of fossil fuel burnt.

        In our modern world, that argument is a stupid distraction pushed by those who wish to avoid serious discussion of the real issue – why we do actually need to reduce our burning of fossil fuels. It is ad hominem – shooting the messenger, and ignoring the message.

        But even on this site, we have a number of Righties who like to try such juvenile crap. Pushing 'Practice what you Preach' to such a silly level is just moronic. We all have to use fossil fuels in some way in modern society. This does not mean that one cannot campaign for a future change for us all.

        And for any numpties still wanting a reason to scream, "Hypocrite!" at Greta, she is trying to warn us about Global warning overall, not exclusively the fossil fuel thing.

        Are you going to scream, "Hypocrite!" at her for daring to breathe and thereby produce carbon dioxide?

        That would be no less stupid than the previous 'Hypocrite' argument.

        • greywarshark

          No one on the Right is a simpleton.   They have all worked out the advantages of wilful ignorance, and of spending all their time carping, criticising and demoralising the people they have decided to discriminate against.   It saves them from thinking hard and change would make a difference, perhaps lessen their present level of satisfaction, so their wants must take precedence. They will continue this behaviour on principle, even if what is planned by the progressives will advantage them – because that's what they do.   Lemmings the lot.

    • KJT 18.2

      Oh. The perennial, " you used a plastic bag once, so you are hypocritical talking about AGW" argument.

      To go with the "exploited girl". Argument.

      The first argument is simply ridiculous, the second just shows the misogyny and ignorance of the person making it.

      It is almost always climate change deniers and misogynists that come up with either. The two lots of attitudes seem to often occur in the same person.

      16 year old, Young  women, can and, do think for themselves.

  19. greywarshark 19

    I wonder how many leftish people still blog here?   The path seems to be wide open to the gang who gather to bark and chew at those who come here and want to discuss what the left can do and celebrate what it has.

    • In Vino 19.1

      I think there is a sustained campaign by a low number of trolls operating under several pseudonyms each aimed at creating the situation you describe. Discouraging positivity is easy for them. But I am one of those conspiracy theorists.. 

      • Incognito 19.1.1

        If you mean sockpoppets, I’d like to think we do have a pretty good handle on those.

        The problem as I see it is that too many people here bite and don’t let go. Sometimes, I don’t know which one is worse, the ‘troll’ or the one who gives them oxygen – it becomes a symbiotic act of creating noise and counter-noise and in the end you cannot tell who is or does what. In fact, it doesn’t really matter because what matters is the noise and it is all noise coming from both sides. You don’t want noise, don’t make noise (back).

        • In Vino

          Yes, Incognito – I do not envy you the efforts you put in to controlling this  maelstrom. 

          We all ignore one thing, but get fired up and respond to another, often depending on how good we think our response is.

          Maybe you are helping us all with some kind of therapeutic outlet?

          I hope that the best political policies and ideas benefit from all this, but fear that the path will be a long and winding way. (Damn those silly old pop songs..)

          • Incognito

            Nah, I/we don’t control anything here, we (i.e. the Moderators) are just the ambulance at the bottom of the cliff so to speak. The real control (or better: influence) is with the people who comment here, who make the site what it is IMO.

            My secret suspicion is that there is no destiny at the end of the path and that the path is it. In saying that, we can, of course, look back and see how far or how high we have come, or not for that matter. We can also follow footsteps in the sand or snow, hoping that we’ll reach a special place (of rescue or salvation perhaps) only to realise, after some time, that we are tracing or own footsteps. Life is a funny thing when you think about it …

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  • Ten reasons the Tories do NOT want an election
    There has been a lot of talk about Boris Johnson wanting an election, and he has blustered with great gusto about 'chicken' Jeremy Corbyn refusing one, but I think there are many reasons why he is secretly glad he has been refused the opportunity:The Tories are an utter rabble,tearing themselves ...
    6 days ago
  • Prorogation Illegal, rule Scottish judges
    Scottish appeal court judges have declared that Boris Johnson’s decision to suspend parliament in the run-up to the October Brexit deadline is unlawful. The three judges, chaired by Lord Carloway, Scotland’s most senior judge, overturned an earlier ruling that the courts did not have the powers to interfere in the prime ...
    6 days ago
  • Let me explain what I meant by Everyday New Zealanders
    By Simon Bridges. The following is a press release from the office of Simon Bridges, leader of The National Party. Key ora, New Zealand. Happy Maori Language Week. Look, I’m writing to you today because I want to clear something up. There’s been a lot of kerfuffle around some things ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    6 days ago
  • Yes, the SIS is subject to the Public Records Act
    I understand there's some stuff going round about how the SIS "was removed from the list of public offices covered by the Public Records Act in 2017". The context of course being their records derived from US torture, which will be disposed of or sealed. The good news is that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • An evidence-based discussion of the Canadian fluoride/IQ study
    Dr. Christopher Labos and Jonathan Jarry discuss the recent Canadian fluoride/IQ research. They provide an expert analysis of the paper and its problems. Click on image to go to podcast. The critical debate about the recent ...
    6 days ago
  • Climate Change: Australia in denial
    Australia is burning down again, and meanwhile its natural disaster minister is denying climate change:Australia’s minister responsible for drought and natural disasters, David Littleproud, has said that he doesn’t “know if climate change is manmade”. Clarifying earlier comments that the question is “irrelevant” when considering the Coalition government’s response to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Philippines activist speaking on the Duterte tyranny
    Auckland Philippines Solidarity is excited to host Professor Judy Taguiwalo for a speaking tour of NZ in September. She is a well-known activist in the Philippines and was a political prisoner under the Marcos dictatorship. Professor Taguiwalo briefly served as a Cabinet member under President Duterte but was forced from ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • Disgust
    I have no special insights to offer on the Labour sexual assault coverup. All I have is disgust. Disgust that an organisation could fail its people so badly. Disgust that they punished the victims rather than the perpetrator. Disgust that its party hacks are apparently blaming the victims for demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Speak Up for Women calls out Greens’ censorship
    This open letter to the Green Party was penned after an opinion piece by Jill Abigail, a feminist and founding member of the party, was censored by the Greens’ leadership. (Redline has reprinted her article here).The intolerance of the Green Party leaders and their acceptance of the misogyny of gender ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • Member’s Day: End of Life Choice, part 3
    Today is a Member's day, and David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill continues its slow crawl through its committee stage. They're spending the whole day on it today, though the first hour is likely to be spent on voting left over from last time. After that they'll move on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Flight to Los Angeles turned back after passengers decide they don’t want to go anymore
    An ambitious plan to fly to Los Angeles petered out into a brief sight-seeing trip and a desire to return home and get some sleep before work tomorrow. Air New Zealand has confirmed a flight to Los Angeles last night was turned back about a quarter of the way into ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    7 days ago
  • Indigenous Futures: defuturing and futuring – an analytical framework for policy development?
    There appears to be consensus – by omission – that the concept of indigenous futures should be accepted at face value. So I scavenged the internet to see if I could locate an academic descriptor or a framework around how we think about it as a concept, and whether it ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    1 week ago
  • Cadbury rumoured to be releasing the Pineapple Trump
    Here’s another novelty chocolate to shove in your gob, New Zealand Cadbury could be seeking to make itself great again with a rumoured new release: Pineapple Trumps, a spin on its classic chocolate-encased pineapple treat and do-it-yourself tooth remover. The global confectionery manufacturer and bumbling “before” character in an infomercial, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • The coming resource war.
    During my time in the Pentagon I had the privilege of sitting down with military leaders and defence and security officials from a variety of Latin American nations. Sometimes I was present as a subordinate assistant to a senior US defence department official, sometimes as part of a delegation that ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Māori Language Week with The Civilian
    Kia ora, Aotearoa. It’s that magical time of year. Te Wiki o te Reo Māori. In English, the week that frightens talk radio. As you probably know by now, all your favourite media outlets are participating, some more successfully than others. Stuff has changed its name to Puna for the ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Will Horizons act on climate change?
    Local body elections are coming up next month. And it looks like all Palmerston North candidates for Horizons (the Manawatu-Whanganui Regional Council) want to take action on climate change:Climate change is set to be a key issue in Palmerston North for the next three years if those wanting to get ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • BORA reform is stalled
    Eighteen months ago, the government promised to strengthen the Bill of Rights Act, by explicitly affirming the power of the courts to issue declarations of inconsistency and requiring Parliament to formally respond to them. So how's that going? I was curious, so I asked for all advice about the proposal. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Corbyn and Brexit
    As the Brexit saga staggers on, the focus is naturally enough on the Prime Minister and his attempts to achieve Brexit “do or die”. But the role played by the Leader of the Opposition is of almost equal interest and complexity. The first problem for Jeremy Corbyn is that he ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • A ditch for him to die in
    Last week, English Prime Minister Boris Johnson boldly declared that he would rather die be dead in a ditch than delay Brexit. Unfortunately for him, the UK parliament accepted the challenge, and promptly dug one for him. The "rebellion bill" requires him to ask for and secure yet another temporary ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Warning! Warning! Danger Jacinda Ardern! Danger Marama Davidson! Warning!
    Lost In Political Space: The most important takeaway from this latest Labour sexual assault scandal, which (if I may paraphrase Nixon’s White House counsel’s, John Dean’s, infamous description of Watergate) is “growing like a cancer” on the premiership, is the Labour Party organisation’s extraordinary professional paralysis in the face of ...
    1 week ago
  • Union solidarity with Ihumatao land occupation
    by Daphna Whitmore Every Sunday for the past two months unionists from First Union, with supporters from other unions, have set out to the Ihumatao land protest, put up gazebos and gas barbeques, and cooked food for a few hundred locals and supporters who have come from across the country. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: The wrong kind of trees?
    Newsroom today has an excellent, in-depth article on pine trees as carbon sinks. The TL;DR is that pine is really good at soaking up carbon, but people prefer far-less efficient native forests instead. Which is understandable, but there's two problems: firstly, we've pissed about so long on this problem that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • No freedom of speech in Turkey
    Canan Kaftancioglu is a Turkish politician and member of the opposition Republican People's Party (CHP). Like most modern politicians, she tweets, and uses the platform to criticise the Turkish government. She has criticised them over the death of a 14-year-old boy who was hit by a tear gas grenade during ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Speaker: Tadhg Stopford: Why I’m standing for the ADHB
    Hi there, just call me Tim.We face tough problems, and I’d like to help, because there are solutions.An Auckand District Health Board member has nominated me for as a candidate for the ADHB, because her MS-related pain and fatigue is reduced with hemp products from Rotorua.  Nothing else helped her. If I ...
    1 week ago
  • Good little vassals
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security has published their report on whether the SIS and GCSB had any complicity in American torture. And its damning. The pull quote is this:The Inquiry found both agencies, but to a much greater degree, the NZSIS, received many intelligence reports obtained from detainees who, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Who Shall We Turn To When God, And Uncle Sam, Cease To Defend New Zealand?
    Bewhiskered Cassandra? Professor Hugh White’s chilling suggestion, advanced to select collections of academic, military and diplomatic Kiwi experts over the course of the past week, is that the assumptions upon which Australia and New Zealand have built their foreign affairs and defence policies for practically their entire histories – are ...
    1 week ago
  • The Politics of Opposition
    For most of the time I was a British MP, my party was out of government – these were the Thatcher years, when it was hard for anyone else to get a look-in. As a front-bencher and shadow minister, I became familiar with the strategies required in a parliamentary democracy ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • More expert comments on the Canadian fluoride-IQ paper
    The Green et al (2019) fluoride/IQ is certainly controversial – as would be expected from its subject (see If at first you don’t succeed . . . statistical manipulation might help and Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear). Anti-fluoride campaigners have been actively promoting it ...
    1 week ago
  • The return to guerrilla war in Colombia
    by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh On August 29th a video in which veteran FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) commander Iván Márquez announced that they had taken up arms again was released. There was no delay in the reaction to it, from longtime Liberal Party figure and former president Uribe, for ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Air New Zealand identifies this enormous plot of unused land as possible second airport site
    Air New Zealand couldn’t believe its luck that this seemingly ideal piece of real estate had so far gone entirely unnoticed. Air New Zealand’s search for a site to build a second Auckland Airport may have made a breakthrough this afternoon, after employees scanning Google satellite imagery spotted a huge, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Redline on the Labour Party
    No-one on the anti-capitalist left in this country today puts forward a case that Labour is on the side of the working class.  There are certainly people who call themselves ‘socialist’ who do, but they are essentially liberals with vested interests in Labourism – often for career reasons. Nevertheless, there ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • New Fisk
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour’s failure
    When National was in government and fucking over the poor for the benefit of the rich, foodbanks were a growth industry. And now Labour is in charge, nothing has changed: A huge demand for emergency food parcels means the Auckland City Mission is struggling to prepare for the impending arrival ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Ardern attempts to vaccinate Clarke Gayford live on television to prove that it’s safe
    Gayford, pictured here on The Project, before things got wildly out of control. A bold public relations move by the Government to encourage parents to vaccinate their children has gone horribly wrong. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern appeared on tonight’s episode of Three’s The Project, where the plan was for her ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Has Mr. Whippy gone too far by parking on our front lawns?
    Mr. Whippy’s business model has driven it down a dark road of intimidation. Residents in major centres around the country are becoming disgruntled by the increasingly aggressive actions of purported ice cream company Mr. Whippy, who have taken to parking on people’s front lawns and doorsteps in a desperate attempt ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Cleaning up the water
    Today the government released its Action Plan for Healthy Waterways, aimed at cleaning up our lakes and rivers. Its actually quite good. There will be protection for wetlands, better standards for swimming spots, a requirement for continuous improvement, and better standards for wastewater and stormwater. But most importantly, there's a ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Fronting up
    Today I appeared before the Environment Committee to give an oral submission on the Zero Carbon Bill. Over 1,500 people have asked to appear in person, so they've divided into subcommittees and are off touring the country, giving people a five minute slot each. The other submitters were a mixed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear
    Anti-fluoride activists have some wealthy backers – they are erecting billboards misrepresenting the Canadian study on many New Zealand cities – and local authorities are ordering their removal because of their scaremongering. Many New Zealanders ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Democracy – I Don’t Think So
    So, those who “know best” have again done their worst. While constantly claiming to be the guardians of democracy and the constitution, and respecters of the 2016 referendum result, diehard Remainers (who have never brought themselves to believe that their advice could have been rejected) have striven might and main ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • Government says it will now build just one really nice home
    Following publication of this article, the Ministry has requested it to be noted that this supplied image is not necessarily representative of what the final house will look like, and it “probably won’t be that nice.” As part of today’s long-anticipated reset of the Government’s flagship KiwiBuild policy, Housing Minister ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Imperialism and your cup of coffee
    Over the next week or two we will be running three synopses of parts of the opening chapter of John Smith’s Imperialism in the 21st Century (New York, Monthly Review Press, 2016).  The synopsis and commentary below is written by Phil Duncan. Marx began Capital not with a sweeping historical ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Still juking the stats
    The State Services Commission and Ombudsman have released another batch of OIA statistics, covering the last six months. Request volumes are up, and the core public service is generally handling them within the legal timeframe, though this may be because they've learned to extend rather than just ignore things. And ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Hard News: Time for a New Deal: 25 years on
    In 1994, I was editing an ambitious street mag called Planet, from a fabled office at at 309 Karangahape Road. The thirteenth issue of the magazine was published in the winter of that year and its cover embodied a particularly ambitious goal: the end of cannabis prohibition.I wanted to do ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Not impressed
    KiwiBuild was one of the Ardern government's core policies. The government would end the housing crisis and make housing affordable again by building 100,000 new homes. Of course, it didn't work out like that: targets weren't met, the houses they did build were in the wrong place, and the whole ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Solar beats coal
    As the climate crisis escalates, it is now obvious that we need to radically decarbonise our economy. The good news is that its looking easy and profitable for the energy sector. Wind is already cheaper than fossil fuels, and now solar is too:The levellised cost of solar PV has fallen ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago

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