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Open mike 29/01/2011

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, January 29th, 2011 - 76 comments
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76 comments on “Open mike 29/01/2011 ”

  1. Pete 1

    Fran O’Sullivan won’t be everyone’s favourite commentator but has some interesting things to say.

    Key’s proposal to sell down long overdue

    It is high time more tangible steps were taken to build an “ownership society” and slay the ideological dragon that says private ownership of major companies is wicked.

    If Phil Goff hadn’t already queered Labour’s pitch by unveiling a raft of election policies that will send the NZ Government’s debt serving bill soaring to stratospheric level, he would have been able to puncture Key’s plan as a fatal conceit.

    Key wants to build an aspirational society where it’s not a crime to want to get ahead. The kind of society where aspirational Kiwis will be attracted by New Zealand’s competitive personal tax rates to stay here rather than join the Australian exodus. It is a big call given the propensity of Kiwis to fall for demonising “the rich”.

    Far better to be led by a Prime Minister who values enterprise and taking New Zealand’s place in the real world than the alternative approach of dividing up a cake that has yet to be baked.

    Even poor people and have aspirations beyond “where’s my share?” Even poor people can by shares and build an investment portfolio over time. Poor people can become “rich” people if they strive beyond rather than settle for mediocrity.

    • “Ownership society” sounds so wonderful. How could one possibly object. After all there are so many places in the world where such societies thrive, such as ….

    • millsy 1.2

      Translation: Youre nothing unless you are rich. Collective ownership of public assets for the public good = bad, profit at all costs = good. We should all bow and scrape and doff out caps to the rich because they are aspiration, if you ‘settle’ for the security of a family home, a car and an good paying job, you are nothing. Greed is good, lets give our hydro dams to Gordon Gekko.

      Get fucked Fran. Labour want to build public assets, and build a country. They have been doing it since 1935. They even had National doing the same, between 1949 and 1984.

      Now National are going to finish tearing it down. And they have Fran’s support (and Pete as well).

      Lets throw these bums out come november.

      • Pete 1.2.1

        I’m not for tearing anything down, I’m for exploring the best balance of public and private ownership. Some things work best done through private enterprise, some things require public input and involvement. I prefer we don’t have too much of either.

        Translation: Youre nothing unless you are rich.

        That’s ridiculous – it’s stupid trying to frame it as poor versus rich. You don’t need to be rich, or aspire to being rich, to be satisfied and happy with what you have, but a degree of private ownership helps, and a degree of ambition helps. That’s why many people aspire to own their own homes.

        • millsy

          “I’m not for tearing anything down, I’m for exploring the best balance of public and private ownership. Some things work best done through private enterprise, some things require public input and involvement. I prefer we don’t have too much of either.”

          I actually agree with you. I do not want either privately owned prisons, or state owned supermarkets (through having our supermarkets as supplier and farmer owned co-ops would sound good)

          “That’s why many people aspire to own their own homes”

          Thats why we had things like 2% Housing Corp. mortgages (like the one Paula Bennett had), and people were able to capitalise the old Family Benefit into a house deposit.

          Now that was a policy that supported aspiration.

        • KJT

          It would be nice if NZ wages were high enough to buy homes and feed families without tax payer subsidies. Then People may have some spare income to buy shares.
          I.E. Business paying their real costs instead of leaning on the State tit.

          What happened to the increased investment in entrepreneurial business that was going to happen if business costs, including wages, were cut? Decreased to 1/3 of that in the 70’s.
          The wealthy chose to steal our money and run instead.

          Now they are “aspirational” to repeat their success of they 80’s and 90’s and run away with what’s left.

      • johnm 1.2.2

        100% right millsy!

      • The Voice of Reason 1.2.3

        The opinion of Irish/Canadien singer Denis Ryan on the collapse of the Celtic Tiger (and Michael Flatley!). Warning, contains a tiny bit of swearing.

      • Chris73 1.2.4

        *cough, cough* *Roger Douglas and Richard Prebble*

        • Jum

          Well spit it out lad. What are you trying to say?

          • Chris73

            Labour (since 1984) havent really had a stellar track record at building public assets have they…

            • orange whip?

              That’s right Chris. When the right-wingers were in charge of Labour in the 80s they fucked up royally.

              What’s your point? Beware of right wing ideologues, they’ll sell all your assets? Don’t trust any govt that includes Douglas or Prebble?

              Couldn’t agree more.

              • Chris73

                Good thing your current leader wasn’t a cabinet minister in that govt and learnt from then eh 😉

                • Armchair Critic

                  Our current leader is John Key.
                  Phil Goff, OTOH, was a minister in the fourth labour/first ACT government. I hated what they did so much I voted National, much to my regret later. So did a lot of people.
                  Thing is, this whole “Phil Goff sold state assets” line is pretty feeble, because:
                  1. It was 20 years ago.
                  2. It ignores the nine year he spent as a cabinet minister much more recently.
                  3. It ignores the current policies and directions of the Labour party.
                  4. It assumes people can not change their minds or admit their mistakes.

    • Olwyn 1.3

      This story may have had some traction in 1983, when the country was deep in debt and people had yet to see what lay ahead. However, the privatisation model has had almost 30 years to show that there is more to it than simple dispossession, and it has failed to do so.

      Furthermore, the claim that “anyone can become rich,” occludes the fact that everyone cannot.Visiting privation on most so that a few can prosper is not a good model for a stable society.

      Certainly, the people in Egypt and Tunisia have shown in no uncertain terms that they have had a gut full of this model. The people in Britain, Greece, Ireland etc, do not seem too happy with it either.

      Anti-spam word: survive

      • johnm 1.3.1

        “Furthermore, the claim that “anyone can become rich,” occludes the fact that everyone cannot.Visiting privation on most so that a few can prosper is not a good model for a stable society. ”
        Well said Olwyn that’s why the U$ has an immense Police, National Guard and Prison Gulag to keep the have nots in their place. However if you are employed in this massive security complex to control your own people it’s very PROFITABLE!

    • Draco T Bastard 1.4

      Ah, no, poor people cannot buy shares – they’re too poor you idiot. Selling off these natural monopolies will end up with them being foreign owned, degrading and costing a hell of a lot and, after awhile, we’ll have to then cough up the billions to fix them. Billions which will go to the people who let our vital infrastructure degrade – same as is now happening with Telecom.

    • marsman 1.5

      How many bottles of PM wine does Fran O’Sullivan get for XMas, or is she on Key’s payroll?

    • MrSmith 1.6

      Pete where do you live? as you have just described New Zealand today!

    • millsy 2.1

      I wonder if he’ll blame the unions for this one….

    • Jum 2.2

      [Poor judgement Jum…RL] The Hobbit was not written by a New Zealander and it was never a New Zealand novel.

      I’ll wait for the DVD; I will watch it because Jackson is good at what he does. I won’t give money to the cinema. I’m sure good ol’ working people will turn up in their masses though, those who haven’t done their homework on his sell-out of them.

      • Jum 2.2.1

        Yes, I knowwwwwwwwwwww, RL, but Peter Jackson is an (captcha) establishment icon; he let us down, badly. He betrayed my admiration for him, for his work, for what he has achieved.

        • The Voice of Reason

          Well, the man is in the story telling business, Jum. Must be hard for him to tell the difference between spinning a harmless yarn to the world and bullshitting to an entire country for personal gain. Karma’s a bitch, eh?

      • QoT 2.2.2

        DVDs, Jum. Don’t forget the genius idea someone’s had to try and stretch out The Hobbit into TWO films, complete with irrelevant uncanonical LoTR references just so they can ignore the fact it’s not a big world-shaking epic.

      • Kevin Welsh 2.2.3

        I look forward to downloading this movie and deciding if it was worth the $15-20 to watch at the movies. If it is, i will buy the DVD.

    • fabregas4 2.3

      Miserable I know but I wonder if Peter is in a public hospital – wonder if he lays there thinking ‘but for my robbing the NZ public there might be a few more nurses, those beds in the corridor might be in rooms and the young doctors might be in less debt”. Or maybe he’s thinking about his private jet.

  2. ianmac 3

    Kim Hill’s guest this morning was a Middle East expert talking about the uprising in Tunisia and Egypt. He said that one of the reasons that the Egyptian people are uprising was because the Government over the last 30 years has privatised most of Egypt. Funny that our “aspirational PM wants to go down the same path.

    • Jum 3.1

      Interesting that in Egypt the government has forced the internet providers to close down access internationally.

      JKeyll is the asp to this country. His poison is spreading everywhere. He’s doing very well for his overseas masters.

      • And I wonder how his “Blind Trust’ is doing.Will they be first in the Queue when Energy sale go ahead. Its time he came clean on this so called blind trust.
        Also I wonder if he’s involved in the Pansy Wong scandal ?After all his good friend Shipley seems to be involved.

        • Jum

          His mate Shipley is in, grubby paws ‘n all, with the water privatisation down South. She and Richardson and x x x were in a private council meeting around the time the democratically elected ECan was sacked, and control of the areas’ treasures was decided. You could hear their chainsaws revving up, ready to carve out their spoils. Criminal behaviour.

  3. Deadly_NZ 4

    Now this is cold. But not surprising for this government, and in particular Nick Smith. Just because it was his first (and sadly his last) day at work his mum gets nothing, just grand to pay for a funeral with no body. There’s Millions to be paid out, but this person gets nothing, yep says a lot about the value of our young workers.


    • Deadly_NZ 4.1

      OOppss should be 5 grand

      • pollywog 4.1.1

        Given the nature of the job, you’d think his first day at work would have been safety inductions and more safety inductions followed by even more safety inductions…

        …but nah, just let a 17 yr old kid wander down the mine all wide eyed and excited to NEEDLESSLY DIE HORRIBLY !!!

        yeah nice one, Brownlee, Key and Whittal. This kid’s life is on you.

    • Bill 4.2

      What I’ve been curious about from the start is whether or not Joseph Dunbar underwent any safety induction. I’d imagine that most of a first shift would be taken up by any such training given that it was a hazardous mining environment he was going to work in. And since many aspects of induction are video or leaflet based (usually), then he would have been on site, but not down the shaft during that time.

      Of course, he might have underwent induction training prior to his start date. I’m curious though.

      • The Voice of Reason 4.2.1

        At the very least, he would have had a brief run down on the safety equipment, mine layout and evacuation procedures before starting work, much as workers get at any new job, but more specific to the mining industry.

        I don’t know Pike Rivers processes for sure, but that was my experience at the neighbouring Spring Creek mine and I seriously doubt that Pike River wouldn’t have a similar routine. Certainly, they had a safety committee, safety delegates, union involvement and most of the staff were experienced miners who would expect no less than the best safety processes at the new site.

        So I would fully expect that Joseph Dunbar got, at least, an induction, if not more comprehensive training.

        • Bill

          At the very least, he would have had…

          Should have had. But may not have had. Of course, there will be a plethora of signed off safety documentation if he did have…

          • The Voice of Reason

            Would have had, Bill. It beggars belief that Pike River did not do inductions, for all the reasons I mention above. And not a plethora of papers. A single signed sheet I’d imagine, just like at most industrial work sites.

            • Bill

              I’m not suggesting that Pike river didn’t run inductions. But that lad turned up to work three days prior to his start date. And so the possibility exists that he was allowed to go down the mine on the understanding that he would go through induction later.

              As for signed off papers, I recall having to sign off on having viewed that video and then another for that other video, plus sign off on individual pieces of literature. I remember it all chewing up a considerable amount of time and that the time was ‘on the clock’. And I wasn’t going to be working in an environment that was in any way as hazardous as mining.

              • The Voice of Reason

                All sorts of possibilities exist, Bill, but c’mon, how likely is that scenario? A kid on his first day allowed down without getting the safety induction? How did he get his gear? His BA? His boots? All that stuff is going to be up in the site office waiting to be issued to him by the management person responsible for the equipment. Who is also likely to be responsible for the induction, which was my experience at the mine next door. He would also have to hand over his phone, cigarette lighter and other personal belongings, then be issued with a locker and ID tag. To have all those things happen, yet have the safety lecture left out beggars belief.

                Put your fears aside. If there was even a hint that PRC wasn’t doing the basics you’d have read about it by now and, given how militantly safety conscious miners are, it would have been an issue on the day, too.

  4. Jum 5

    It just proves my case against the raising up of business as some sort of holy nirvana.

    It is not. It will react to anything that threatens its profit by hurting human beings. Business loses its humanity very quickly in times of hardship, usually caused by its own failings.

    Take the case of a young man, so reliable his boss leaves him in charge of the whole company while swanning off overseas. Now the young man is just told “stay home, unpaid. We have no work currently.” No effort was expended to help him seek an income with WINZ while he waited for ‘call to work’. Disgusting treatment.

    That is the sickness pervading New Zealand – selfish individual greed.
    The antidote to the asp(irational) poisoning of our country by the asps (JKeyll and Hide) is to balance the legs of the stool – caring involved government (more interested in helping people than turning NZ into a prison state), green caring business, involved caring unions.

    No empire building needed in any of those three legs.

  5. millsy 6

    Meanwhile in Christchurch, here is the latest example of people getting mucked around by the EQC/Insurance Barons:


    • Deadly_NZ 6.1

      Oh yes just the nice kind and caring people you need to deal with while your house is wet and cold. Well Done EQC pat your selves on the back, and give yourselves another nice bonus.. God it makes you sick. And where is the so very helpful, nice and approachable Mr Brownlee ? Oh off on holiday ? I hope he is getting ready for the busy task of of Sitting on his FAT ass doing fuck all again, while sucking from the trough for another year. Lets vote these fools out.

    • Lanthanide 6.2

      I think the guy might be someone at my work, actually. One of the women was telling me that his contents claim wasn’t being paid out yet when all of his neighbour’s had been.

  6. Bill 7

    Just caught the news on the effects of the N. Island’s rainfall from the residual tropical storm. And a thought (admittedly pre-coffee) crossed my mind. So, if you can struggle through a poorly written stream of words….

    If climate collapse means that there will be more tropical storms of a more severe nature and that the tropics even, essentially, move south; and NZ gets more instances of ‘ever less residual’ storm events on a landscape that has been shaped by far gentler weather than that which we might experience in the future…

    Then how many instances are there of infrastructure and built up areas sitting on land that will be reconfiguring ( sometimes quite radically) due to future weather conditions (ie saturated higher land ‘bevelling out’ to account for higher rainfall and flood plain bounderies expanding)?

    • RedLogix 7.1

      You will have noted that the media, with few exceptions, is refusing to mention ‘climate change’ in connection with any of these events.

      On the other hand Bill, it may or may not reassure you that Muchich Re, one of the world’s largest reinsurers clearly agrees with you.

      I recently read this good analogy; climate is the trainer, weather is the boxer. And it’s getting better at throwing faster, more frequent punches.

      • Bill 7.1.1

        I’m just glad I don’t live in the likes of Wellington where all that soil sitting on steep hill sides might well be assuming new configurations of stability…slip sliding away… on account of new water carrying requirements.

        • Lanthanide

          The next earthquake will sort Wellington out nicely. It also means that $18B is far from sufficient for EQC. Chch is going to end up costing something like 6-8B and we were lucky – it was only a 7.1. A big 8 or so hitting Wellington could easily cost 20B+.

          I think we need a 0.1% tax applied to all income and business profits that goes straight to EQC, and have EQC expand it’s coverage to something like $150,000/30,000 for those who are insured, and 40,000/8,000 for those who otherwise don’t have insurance.

  7. Pascal's bookie 8

    GOP wants to redefine rape:


    With this legislation, which was introduced last week by Rep. Chris Smith (R-N.J.), Republicans propose that the rape exemption be limited to “forcible rape.” This would rule out federal assistance for abortions in many rape cases, including instances of statutory rape, many of which are non-forcible. For example: If a 13-year-old girl is impregnated by a 24-year-old adult, she would no longer qualify to have Medicaid pay for an abortion. (Smith’s spokesman did not respond to a call and an email requesting comment.)

    • QoT 8.1

      Shakesville has comment on this too:

      The proposed law effectively, if not by design, gives veto control over terminating pregnancies resulting from rape to the rapist.

      Boy, I’m sure rethinking my whole stance that anti-choicers will take any chance they can get to control women’s bodies …

    • Jum 8.2

      The most chilling photograph I have ever seen along with the accompanying reason for the group’s existence was a class-type photograph of a group holding knitting needles. There was no wool in sight.

      Expect to see a surge in knitting needle sales when JKeyll introduces that women-killing legislation into New Zealand.

      Women will have only themselves to blame for their loss of choice over their own bodies if they vote JKeyll and misogyny into government again this year. They’re already half responsible for helping JKeyll and Hide the supercity asset conmen to prepare our assets for sell-off and set back pay equity again, just as they did in 1990.

      • QoT 8.2.1

        Hopefully we can work out something better than knitting needles! Bring on the herb gardens and hot baths.

        Women will have only themselves to blame for their loss of choice over their own bodies if they vote JKeyll and misogyny into government again this year. They’re already half responsible for helping JKeyll and Hide the supercity asset conmen to prepare our assets for sell-off and set back pay equity again, just as they did in 1990.

        Not sure how you come to this conclusion though, what with (a) women generally voting in greater numbers for the left and (b) why it’s a foregone conclusion that a new NACT government would increase abortion restrictions.

        • Draco T Bastard

          Actually, in 2k8 most of the swing to NACT was from women.

          • Lanthanide

            Exactly, Draco, because women typically are more left-leaning then men, so there were more of them available to swing to the right; men were already voting that way.

        • Jum


          Yeah, they suggested gin baths (better used in martinis) and jumping up and down.

          For a so called civilized world that women are supposed to play an equal part in, the choices are reducing rapidly – JKeyll’s ‘women are breeding for a business’ on DPB is his opinion of women living tough lives.
          Removal of the pay equity research already underway he stopped. Women doing exactly the same work as men in WINZ are paid less. Tony Ryall, on JKeyll’s orders, shut down any changes to that.

          (b) because JKeyll is american-trained and here to do a job and that includes turning New Zealand, the first country for women to get the vote (even if it was by accident), into America where the conservatives are winning and the choices for women are getting smaller.
          (b) conservatives lobbying this government are many and well-resourced. The business rotundtable boys’ bible has been founded on creating an elite of men, and a cheap, desperate workforce, followed by control over women’s choices.

          JKeyll and this NActMU government are socially engineering New Zealand back to a time of ‘behind closed doors, closed minds, closed fists’.

          Women have not reached equality. The attacks on them both at home and in public are proof that many men hold them in low regard. These men are getting this belief from a government which does not treat women as equal.

  8. Pascal's bookie 9

    Tea party congress critter hates the troops!


    Tea party favorite Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., has unveiled a plan for cutting $400 billion in federal spending that includes freezing Veterans Affairs Department health care spending and cutting veterans’ disability benefits.

    • millsy 9.1

      You want to reduce spending on VA health care? DONT GO TO WAR!

      Simple really.

      • Pascal's bookie 9.1.1

        But but but, War is a force that Gives Us Meaning. And they’re volunteers fer chrissake, they want to fight! The tax payers spend trillions subsidising these people’s dreams and then they turn around asking for more handouts when they get home. Unbelievable. They’re just a bunch of ingrates really mills.

  9. Pascal's bookie 10

    Garth McVicar’s model sheriff rounds up some varmints:


    not unrelated, but definitely underreported:


    Maybe this is what Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik was talking about in the wake of the Giffords shootings. Maybe he was so quick to denounce heated rhetoric because he’d seen what it had already led to in his county, in his state and his country. It’s not just rhetoric, after all. It’s rallies and talk of revolution. It’s people up in arms, passing laws to get the Mexicans out, and when that fails, arming themselves and taking the vigilante route. And if Brisenia’s story doesn’t break your heart, nothing will.

    Oh Noes. it’s a blood libel!!

  10. big bruv 11

    Congrats to Labour for introducing the bill into the ballot which will secure Anzac and Waitangi day as days off.

    Pity it was not done during their nine years in power.

    • The Voice of Reason 11.1

      Yeah, I can’t imagine why Clark ignored your years of campaigning for the Mondayising of these holidays. You did campaign, didn’t you? It’s not like you just read this in the paper this morning and decided you could have a half witted pop at Labour as a result. Nah, couldn’t be.

      Paid up yet, you parasitic bludger?

      • Lanthanide 11.1.1

        Seriously though, why didn’t they? They had the holiday’s act of 2004 that put in permanent Monday-ising of Xmas and New Years and came up with the mind-bending ‘normal working day’ criteria. There’s no reason they couldn’t have applied it to Anzac and Waitangi day at the same time.

        Actually I’m much more in favour of Friday-ising Anzac and Waitangi, to give them a special significance and also help compensate those who work a standard Tuesday-Saturday roster and therefore miss out on all Monday-ised holidays.

        • Deadly_NZ

          And while they are at it they can sort out the Easter debacle as well.
          Something else that’s been waiting to be fixed for years as well.

  11. Bored 12

    Just watched Obama make his speach on Egypt, calling for restraint and a lack of violence from all parties. How fucking ironic, he stood there bold facedly calling for violence to be avoided. This from the head of a regime that constantly (as evidenced by Wikileaks films of helicopter gunships shooting civilians in Iraq, and which uses “rendition” to torture chambers in such places as Egypt) befouls human rights. What a hypocritical stance. What a total failure of promise Obama is.

    • Draco T Bastard 12.1

      The present dictatorship in Egypt presently gets US$1.5b every year in US arms industry subsidies US aid so of course he’s not going to come out and say that it needs be replaced immediately. That would make him look like a hypocrite…

      Oh, wait…

  12. big bruv 13

    Goodness me Voice, is that what a raw nerve looks like?

    Now be honest Voice, while this is a good idea from Labour it is just another example of their desperation to be noticed, they happen to have stumbled across a half good idea.

    Once again Labour will spend this year promising things the country cannot afford and idiots like you will bend over backwards defending them.

    And the reason you do this?……because it is all about power with you lot, the power to make sure you look after your mates, the ability to make sure your own people are in positions of influence, the good of the nation or the poor (who you only pretend to care about) is not important.

    • The Voice of Reason 13.1

      Our mates are the poor, Bludge, looking after them and the wider working and middle classes is what Labour is all about. But you knew that, eh.

      Pay up.

      • Deadly_NZ 13.1.1

        Yep and we are made poorer by people that don’t pay their bills as well. And it seems we are finding out how the rich get rich they don’t pay their bills.

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