Open mike 29/01/2016

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, January 29th, 2016 - 52 comments
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52 comments on “Open mike 29/01/2016”

  1. RTM 1

    Former ACT MP and prominent conservative commentator calls for nuclear attacks on Middle Eastern cities: http://readingthemaps.blogspot.co.nz/2016/01/david-garrett-and-peace-of-dead.html

    • alwyn 1.1

      I think he must have been reading Paul Erdman’s book “The Crash of ’79” over the summer.
      Great read actually, as long as you can suspend belief for a while.

  2. Ad 2

    If US, Canada and Japan don’t ratify TPPA, it’s hard to see it surviving.

    This would become NZ’s biggest diplomatic disaster since the sinking of the Rainbow Warrior. But this one sheeted direct to Key.

    Richard III: “I am so far in that sin must pluck on sin.”

    Quite a high chance all 3 will fold on it.

    • alwyn 2.1

      “This would become NZ’s biggest diplomatic disaster since the sinking of the Rainbow Warrior. But this one sheeted direct to Key.”

      You have a most peculiar view of what is a diplomatic disaster for a country and who is responsible for one.
      How would it possibly be Key’s fault if Obama can’t get something through Congress?
      Or if the Diet plays up? Or if Trudeau delays ratification?

      As for the sinking of The Rainbow Warrior. What was the diplomatic disaster for New Zealand in that? It was one for France. The only awkward part for New Zealand was Lange having to give in to the realpolitik of the world and having to let the agents out.
      At least he told us about it.

      A pity Helen Clark wasn’t so open about the effect of the 2001 actions of Australia. One line in a Australian Government Press release and nothing when she got home. That one really has turned out to be a disaster.

      • Draco T Bastard 2.1.1

        As for the sinking of The Rainbow Warrior. What was the diplomatic disaster for New Zealand in that?

        The fact that the perpetrators walked free.

        • alwyn 2.1.1.1

          Well I did say that didn’t I? “The only awkward part for New Zealand was Lange having to give in to the realpolitik of the world and having to let the agents out”

          I don’t regard that as having been a diplomatic disaster. There wasn’t a damn thing we could do but let them go.
          “realpolitik”? Sure ,but there wasn’t any option as France were going to screw us over access to Europe. The disaster was to France for being caught out.

          What would you have had Lange do?

    • esoteric pineapples 2.2

      What a great quote – and it sounds so contemporary “I am so far in” as in “are you in”

    • ianmac 3.1

      Pat. As in NZ I guess the politicians must weigh up the balance of reaction to with-holding critical information, against the damage done if the peasants knew just what would happen to their country if they knew the contents of a deal. And long after the current crop of MPs have moved on, the legacy remains.

  3. Wayne 4

    Ad,

    Hard to see Japan not ratifying. They are a parliamentary democracy like us. In short the govt has a majority in parliament. If the LDP split on the necessary votes, then the PM would have to resign. Could happen but not likely.

    Canada probably will wait for the US. Again it is unlikely Canada would not ratify if the US did.

    So the focus is really on the US, as indeed it always has been.

    In my view Congress will vote yes. The great majority of Republicans will vote for it. Some Democrats (though not many) will vote for it. Therefore it is most likely to go through.

    Members of Congress will know that if they vote against, most other Asia Pacific nations will give up on the US as being able to deliver on this and many other things. The focus then goes to the RCEP, which has China as the centrepoint. RCEP is not as good as TPP in terms of trade and economic integration, but it would be the only game in town. Which is why I think TPP will get across the line in the US Congress. President Obama, in his State of Nation address, could hardly have been more specific on the China/US leadership point.

    • Congress will only ratify once all other TPP countries have ratified to Congress’ satisfaction.

      Spouting obvious misinformation undermines your credibility.

    • Rosemary McDonald 4.2

      @Wayne.

      Well done! You refrained from calling the TPPA a “free trade agreement”.

      There’s a saying about old dogs and new tricks….

    • Colonial Viper 4.3

      Important to note that the American and Japanese corporate elite have the most to gain from the TPP.

      Hard to see Japan not ratifying. They are a parliamentary democracy like us. In short the govt has a majority in parliament.

      You have a weird concept of “democracy”, Wayne. Reminder: democracy is about government of the people, for the people, by the people. Not government of the millionaires, for the millionaires, by the millionaires.

  4. Penny Bright 5

    Seen THIS?

    Japan’s economic and fiscal policy minister Akira Amari, one of the TPP’s chief negotiators, has been accused of accepting more than $148,000 in bribes from a major construction company.
    http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-35427563

    Just days before world leaders are expected to sign the undemocratic Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a top official in charge of negotiating the agreement has been charged with accepting bribes.

    Japan’s economic and fiscal policy minister Akira Amari, one of the TPP’s chief negotiators, has been accused of accepting more than $148,000 in bribes from a major construction company.

    This is exactly why policy that affects billions of people and our Internet freedom should never be made in secret. This is exactly why we need to stop the TPP.

    Deadline Friday: Click here to tell President Obama not to sign the TPP on February 4th and demand a full investigation into this corruption.

    The TPP was drafted in closed door meetings by corporate lobbyists and government officials like Akira Amari, while journalists, human rights advocates, and the public were locked out.

    How many other politicians involved in drafting the TPP have been taking bribes?

    We can only assume.

    But the results speak for themselves. Chapter after chapter the TPP prioritizes special interests over public interests.

    It contains unbalanced copyright provisions that could lead to Internet censorship, and affects everything from jobs to the environment to access to medicines to national sovereignty.

    Time is running out to stop the TPP. But the scandal surrounding these bribery allegations might be enough to delay things,
    ______________________________________________

    Penny Bright
    2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

  5. Chooky 6

    +100 Penny….well said …. so the corporates are bribing Japanese politicians to support TPP?

    Well they are also bribing US politicians !

    http://www.theguardian.com/business/2015/may/27/corporations-paid-us-senators-fast-track-tpp

    Are corporates also bribing New Zealand politicians?

    …We need declarations of honesty and anti-corruption in Parliament that ALL New Zealand politicians who support the TPP are not being paid to do so by corporate bribes or back handers.

    New Zealand politicians who are supporting the anti -democratic signing of the TPP…MUST be held to ACCOUNT

    (they are NOT working in the interests of New Zealanders and democracy and sovereignty and they are working for corporate interests against the wishes of the majority of New Zealanders)

    • Puckish Rogue 7.1

      On a completely unrelated subject, well done to whoever posted it. I can actually watch it at work…can’t get anything from stuff or nzherald to work but this comes through no problems

      • Molly 7.1.1

        Do they recruit often at your place of work?

        I only ask because you seem to have a lot of unoccupied paid time to visit this site, and clearly logical thought processes are not required.

        (Oh, are you the ACT membership office?)

        • weka 7.1.1.1

          And does your employer know you use worktime to do paid work for Crosby Textor?

          • Puckish Rogue 7.1.1.1.1

            You wouldn’t believe who my employers are…

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_World_Order_(conspiracy_theory)

          • alwyn 7.1.1.1.2

            Behave yourself Weka. Such comments are very likely to get lprent going. It seems awfully close to the line in the policy that warns about not doing things that
            “invades the privacy of people outside the public domain”

            I am sure you wouldn’t really want anyone to be allowed to enquire what your position was in the Green Leader’s Office or something similar.

            • weka 7.1.1.1.2.1

              🙄 Back to being a creep I see alwyn.

              PR and I are having a bit of fun (maybe Molly too). It’s a running joke that PR is a paid astroturfer, a joke he partakes of, just as he has done above.

              But even if it wasn’t, it begs the question of why you would use that to give me a veiled threat. I routinely call you out on your lies about the Green Party, but your comments to me too often have something personal about them. It is creepy.

        • Puckish Rogue 7.1.1.2

          the pays fantastic but it does sometimes take a while for the invoices to be paid

    • Pasupial 7.2

      weka

      I’m glad to see it, as it looks like other commitments will prevent me making it to tonight’s Dunedin talk after all (7pm Burns Hall by First Church), and I only saw the start of the livestream. Looking forward to the protest on Saturday though, hopefully the heavy-handed intimidation tactics from the police will prove to be the best possible call to action for the day.

  6. Molly 8

    Came across Anita Roddicks “Trading with Principles” speech while looking for something else.

    Worth reading in consideration of the discussion on the TPPA:

    We are in Seattle arguing for a world trade system that puts basic human rights and the environment at its core. We have the most powerful corporations of the world ranged against us. They own the media that informs us – or fails to inform us. And they probably own the politicians too.

    It’s enough to make anybody feel a little edgy.

    So here’s a question for the world trade negotiators. Who is the system you are lavishing so much attention on supposed to serve?

    We can ask the same question of the gleaming towers of Wall Street or the City of London – and the powerful men and women who tinker with the money system which drives world trade. Who is this system for?

    Let’s look more closely. Every day, the gleaming towers of high finance oversees a global flow of two trillion dollars through their computer screens. And the terrifying thing is that only three per cent of that – that’s, three hundredths – has anything to do with trade at all. Let alone free trade between equal communities.

    It has everything to do with money. The great global myth being that the current world trade system is for anything but money.

    The other 97 per cent of the two trillion is speculation. It is froth – but froth with terrifying power over people’s lives. Reducing powerless communities access to basic human rights can make money, but not for them. But then the system isn’t designed for them. …

    …The truth is that the WTO, and the group of unelected trade officials who run it, are now the world’s highest court, with the right to overturn local laws and safety regulations wherever they say it ‘interferes with trade’.

    This is world government by default, but it is a blind government. It looks at the measurements of money, but it can’t see anything else. It can recognise profits and losses, but it deliberately turns its face away from human rights, child labour or keeping the environment viable for future generations….

    …Now there will be commentators and politicians by the truckload over the next week accusing us of wanting to turn the clock back. They will say we are parochial, inward-looking, xenophobic and dangerous.

    But we must remind them what free trade really is. The truth is that ‘free trade’ was originally about the freedom of communities to trade equally with each other. It was never intended to be what it is today. A licence for the big, the powerful and the rich, to ride roughshod over the small, the weak and the poor.

    And while we’re about it, let’s nail another myth.

    Nobody could be more in favour of a global outlook than I am. Internationalism means that we can see into the dark corners of the world, and hold those companies to account when they are devastating forests or employing children as bonded labour. Globalisation is the complete opposite, its rules pit country against country and workers against workers in the blinkered pursuit of international competitiveness….

    Let’s be clear about this. It’s not trade we’re against, it’s exploitation and unchecked power.

    …Community trade will make us not a multi-national, but a multi-local. I hope we can measure our success in terms of our ability to show just what’s possible if a company genuinely opens a dialogue with communities.

    Heaven knows, we’re not there yet. But this is real life, and all any of us can do is to make sure we are going in the right direction, and never lose our determination to improve.

    The trouble is that the current trading system undermines anybody who tries.

    Businesses which forego profits to build communities, or keep production local rather than employing semi-slaves in distant sweatshops, risk losing business to cheaper competitors without such commitments, and being targeted for take-over by the slash-and-burn corporate raiders. Reinforced by the weight of the WTO…

    And finally, we must remember we already have power as consumers and as organisations forming strategic and increasingly influential alliances for change. They can insist on open markets as much as they like, but if consumers won’t buy, nothing on earth can make them. Just look at how European consumers have forced the biotech industry’s back up against the wall.

    We have to be political consumers, vigilante consumers. With the barrage of propaganda served up to us every day, we have to be. We must be wise enough so that – whatever they may decide at the trade talks – we know where to put our energy and our money. No matter what we’re told or cajoled to do, we must work together to get the truth out in co-operation for the best, not competition for the cheapest…”

    Worth having a look at the whole speech, which she gave in Seattle in 1999.

    Global trade without global responsibility is exploitation.

  7. RedLogix 9

    This kind of thing is infuriating:

    A Brisbane mining minnow that raised less than $750,000 from investors before inking a deal to buy a coalmine must now guarantee it can pay more than $120m to clean up the site upon closure.

    Batchfire Resources’ agreement to buy a central Queensland mine from Anglo American highlights a growing shift by global coal giants away from less-profitable mines, leaving the fate of expensive environmental rehabilitation in the hands of companies with far fewer resources.

    One analyst said this in turn raised the risks that taxpayers would ultimately be forced to bail out miners if they failed or “financial assurance” regimes run by state governments proved inadequate – as was found in a Queensland government report less than two years ago.

    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/jan/29/coal-giants-abandon-unprofitable-mines-leaving-rehabilitation-under-threat

    Frankly I would see all the assets of Anglo-American stripped, including those of all the directors and anyone with a C in their job title. Then a 10 year prison term.

    Flagrant arrogance and criminality.

    • alwyn 9.1

      I don’t know whether it still exists but there was a company in New Zealand that raised a share capital of $2,000 dollars and then developed a series of on-shore and off-shore gas fields in New Zealand.
      Would you treat them the same way?

      • RedLogix 9.1.1

        I don’t know about the example you have in mind. Insufficient information.

        But in this case the tactic being used here is a blatant attempt to avoid the cost of remediating the site, a liability Anglo clearly signed up to when it opened the site, by exploiting a legal loophole.

        Another tactic commonly used is to never actually close the site, but to put it in ‘care and maintenance’ with a skeleton security crew … thus the remediation requirement never kicks in.

        This is partly an industry problem. There are some miners who DO take their obligations, their ‘social license to operate’ obligations seriously; while others take the criminal path by devising dodges to avoid them. And part of it is a governance issue where politicians like Tony Abbott have been corrupted by the influence of big money to deliberately allow these loopholes to remain.

        The solution is not more footling with loopholes and legal maneuvers. Legislation that puts severe personal liability onto the senior decision makers in large corporates will modify behaviour quick smart.

        • alwyn 9.1.1.1

          It wasn’t a fair question. It actually existed although whether its share capital is the same today I don’t know.
          It was set up as Shell BP and Todd Oil Services Ltd and became Shell Todd Oil Services in 1990 when BP bought out Todd. It developed and ran Kapuni and Maui when it had that theoretical capital structure.
          And yes, the share capital really was $2,000.
          It is not in the category you are talking about though. At least I don’t think so.

          And yes, I agree with you about what companies can get up too. Rather like so many builders and developers who set up a different company for every building and then liquidate them to avoid such things as leaky building claims.

          Governments also get up to tricks though. BP have been screwed by the US Government, the State Governments and the US courts over the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill.
          Claim and you will receive seems to have been the result even for businesses that had closed down months before the spill ever happened.
          I am not trying to defend BP, who totally messed up there but as a foreign company they have been shafted. That affair will probably go on for another 25 years.

          • Molly 9.1.1.1.1

            Not one for linking are you Alwyn. A quick check on the Companies website shows that a company formed under this name in 1955 is still operating.

            And I don’t understand what your reference to “tricks” is. Do you have a link and/or explanation of what you mean?

            • alwyn 9.1.1.1.1.1

              “under this name in 1955 is still operating”
              Really?
              As you would see if you have read the comment you linked to it became “became Shell Todd Oil Services in 1990 when BP bought out Todd”. Do both the old and new name companies co-exist?

              However what I didn’t know was also in this comment. It was whether a $2,000 capital company still existed. As I say “whether its share capital is the same today I don’t know”.
              Did you manage to find that? I couldn’t so I put in the I don’t know bit.

    • Grim 9.2

      Wow, no law in place to ensure the company that created and profited from the pollution is held accountable?

      easy enough to setup a dummy company to buy out your site , and save you cleanup costs then.

      someone should look at who is connected to the new company, any connections to the Anglo Americans investors and lawyers

    • Draco T Bastard 9.3

      Along the same lines:

      And it incenses me that, once big agriculture had made a fortune out of our water, they handed us the bill to get it cleaned up again.

      This is called externalising costs. If there were any fair play – any real justice – at work here, polluters would pay for the costs incurred by their profiteering.

      But in New Zealand, they make you do it. It’s cheaper for Dame Sian to let her cows go wading in your lake than to fork out for farm dams or troughs, and too few people are angry enough to change that.

      We really, really do need to ensure that all costs of business are met by that business. The market doesn’t actually work unless they do.

  8. Draco T Bastard 10

    The Interregnum

    ‘The crisis consists precisely in the fact that the old is dying and the new cannot be born; in this interregnum a great variety of morbid symptoms appear’ – Antonio Gramsci

    Is New Zealand’s political settlement beginning to fray? And does this mean we’re entering the interregnum, that ambiguous moment between society-wide discontent and political change? In BWB’s latest book of essays, edited by Morgan Godfery, ten of New Zealand’s sharpest emerging thinkers gather to debate the ‘morbid symptoms’ of the current moment, from precarious work to climate change, and to discuss what shape change might take, from ‘the politics of love’ to postcapitalism.

    The Interregnum interrogates the future from the perspective of the generation who will shape it.

    Looks like it will be worth the read.

  9. Graeme 11

    I’m intrigued by the language in this clip,

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/life-style/food-wine/drinks/76335438/us-mans-simple-hack-to-save-on-costly-nespresso-pods

    The guy is obviously not an Obama voter, or a fan of “corporations”. Wonder if he realises that Nestle is a foreign trans-national corporation. That might have really got him going…

    The sovereignty issues that we’re concerned about will be just as great in USA as here. I just can’t see this going through. Foreign corporations able to run a ruler over US laws and able to sue US govt for favouring US firms, na, not going to fly…

  10. Molly 12

    One of the Five Eyes seems to be blinking…. a good article on The Intercept about Canada’s moves to protect citizen’s privacy before letting “key allies” access data.

    Canada cuts off some intelligence sharing with the US out of fear for Canadian’s privacy.

    Mind you, one of the comments below is probably fairly accurate:
    Wnt: “First law: Whenever a spy program becomes publicized, it will be discontinued, because spies don’t make a business of doing things that aren’t secret.

    Second law: When spies discontinue a program, it means one thing and one thing only: they’ve initiated some other program doing the same thing far more extensively.

    • Colonial Viper 12.1

      those pesky Lefties beating Harper out of government…

      • Puckish Rogue 12.1.1

        To be fair Harper was only in power for nine years, imagine if a right wing leader of NZ was in power for longer

      • Expat 12.1.2

        Wrong again

        The lefties didn’t get voted in, Harper got voted out, because he was so disliked by so many, too far to the right.

  11. alwyn 13

    I assume that Chris Trotter thinks that that kind Mr Key is trying to save the Green Party from their own foolishness?
    http://bowalleyroad.blogspot.co.nz/2016/01/arriving-from-or-departing-for-another.html
    Say “Thank you Mr Key”, Meteria.

    • weka 13.1

      Hard to say what Trotter is on about there tbh. Most of the article is basically saying that Treasury can’t be trusted (which is probably why the GP proposal is for an independent unit within Treasury). The bit at the end is nonsense, but I’d hazard a guess he is just taking the piss to make a point and isn’t really suggesting that the GP’s proposal is a lead in to forming govt with National.

    • Puckish Rogue 13.2

      Wow, I mean just wow

      I could say that’s harsh but that’s such an understatement

  12. Draco T Bastard 14

    Britain is at war with Yemen. So why does nobody know about it?

    Yemen is a human-made disaster, and the fingerprints of the west are all over it. Consider what a UN panel report seen by this newspaper has revealed: that airstrikes have targeted “civilians and civilian objects, in violation of humanitarian law”, including everything from refugee camps to schools to weddings to buses.

    The West is presently turning the ME into a bloodbath in an apparent attempt to boost one or two particular countries dominance of the area. This appears to be so that the US/UK can access all of the oil under the sands.

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  • Index of Power Update, 2018-19: China #2
    We reprint below an article from the excellent website the Economics of Imperialism by Tony Norfield This is an update of the statistics for my Index of Power, using data for 2018-19 and discussing what a country’s ranking reflects. The major change is that China’s rank has shifted up and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    4 days ago
  • Climate Change: A history lesson
    Why is New Zealand climate change policy so crap? The Herald this morning has a long article on the twists and turns of climate change policy in New Zealand [paywalled / depaywall script], which shows where we've been. The short version is that the government first began worrying about this ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • What the All Blacks Mean to Us
    The All Blacks have been, for more than a century, arguably the most successful International sports team in the world. But they are more than that; even for those Kiwis who are immune to the charms of rugby (and there are more than a few), the All Blacks are ambassadors ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    4 days ago
  • No one is born into the wrong body
    A short and incredibly powerful speech from a young lesbian woman. No one is born in the wrong body. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    5 days ago
  • Contempt
    Back in June, the UK Court of Appeal ruled that that country's continued arms sales to Saudi Arabia were unlawful. So you'd expect that the UK government stopped approving them, right?Of course not:The government has apologised for breaching a court ruling against the sale of weapons to Saudi Arabia that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Covering up the cover-up
    Yesterday NZDF officials were put on the stand about the lies they had told over Operation Burnham, making implausible claims that it was all a big mistake. But along the way, we learned they had already been put on the spot about it by a previous Defence Minister, who had ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Not as important as they think they are
    Farmers have been whining a lot lately, about the methane targets in the Zero Carbon Bill, about Canterbury's proposed nitrogen limits, and about the government's new proposals to stop them from shitting in our lakes and rivers. These policies are "throwing farmers under the tractor", they will force farmers off ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Behind Every Good Woman Should Stand – Another Good Woman.
    Alone, Alone, All, All, Alone: To argue that the Prime Minister is the victim of her advisers’ failure to keep her informed may offer Jacinda some measure of exoneration – but only at the cost of casting her as a hopeless political ingénue. A star-dusted muppet, whose only purpose is to ...
    5 days ago
  • Poor quality, poorly educated kiddie ‘Journalists’ spreading fake news
    In times of hysteria about the “World coming to an end” and “rising sea levels” so-called ‘Journalists’ who can barely spell words longer than four letters are having a ball! Though the majority of the Public have worked out that manmade climate change is nothing short of pseudo-science, and the ...
    An average kiwiBy admin@averagekiwi.com
    5 days ago
  • Chris Trotter on the BFD
    I don't want to give pblicity to certain parts of the internet that are better left to fester in their own irrelevance (I know, a bit like this place) but the listing of Chris Trotter as a 'author' on Cameron Slater's spinoff website, the BFD requires some explanation.Now, I don't ...
    5 days ago
  • Sex is not a spectrum
    The text below is a Twitter thread by Heather Heying that explains the essence of sexual reproduction and it long evolutionary history. She is an evolutionary biologist and a “professor-in-exile” after she and her husband, Bret Weinstein, stood up to supporters of an enforced “Day of Absence” for white staff and teachers ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    5 days ago
  • Climate Change: Trees, aviation, and offsets
    With crunch time for new Zealand climate policy approaching, most of the New Zealand media have got on board with a global reporting effort to cover the issue. There's one strand of stories today about polling and what it shows about changing public attitudes to the crisis, but the strand ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Pissing-Off The Israelis Is A High-Risk Strategy.
    Dangerous Foes: For those readers of Bowalley Road who feel disposed to dismiss any prospect of an Israeli destabilisation of New Zealand politics, the example of the United Kingdom repays close attention. Ever since the election of Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the British Labour Party, the Israelis have sanctioned, funded and ...
    6 days ago
  • Something to go to in Wellington
    Make It 16, the youth-led campaign to lower New Zealand's voting age, is holding an official campaign launch at Parliament this Friday from 16:30. If you'd like to attend, you can register using EventBrite here. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • A founding member responds to Peace Action Wellington
    by Don Franks It was a lovely sunny Wellington afternoon with blue skies above  the beaches.  In Courtenay Place, political activists packed out a stuffy upstairs room for an important meeting. The assembled pacifists, anarchists, communists and independent young radicals of Peace Action Wellington felt the need for a mission ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    6 days ago
  • “Mistakes and errors”
    Current and former NZDF top brass are being publicly grilled this week by the hit and run inquiry over their public responses to allegations of civilian casualties. Previously, they've claimed there were no casualties, a position which led them to lie to Ministers and to the public. Now, they're saying ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • “Homosexuality is same-sex attraction and relationships, not heterosexuals with delusions of gende...
    by Rafael D. Quiles (gender-critical gay man from Puerto Rico) The writing on the wall is right in people’s faces and people just don’t see it or don’t want to. What could actually possess a heterosexual male to want to feminize himself and claim that he is a lesbian? Because ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    7 days ago
  • Trump: “Where’s my favourite dictator?”
    From the Wall Street Journal:Inside a room of the ornately decorated Hotel du Palais during last month’s Group of Seven summit in Biarritz, France, President Trump awaited a meeting with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al Sisi. Mr. Trump looked over a gathering of American and Egyptian officials and called out in ...
    7 days ago
  • Magdalen Burns, 1983-2019, fighter for women’s liberation
    by the Redline blog collective At Redline we are very saddened to hear of the death of Magdalen Burns who passed away on the morning of Friday, September 13 (British time). Magdalen was a great fighter for the rights of women in general and lesbian women in particular, a defender ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Parliament and the Executive
    The Brexit issue has certainly brought with it a series of apparently difficult constitutional issues, many of them concerning the respective roles of the executive and parliament. Most of them arise because of the unwillingness of MPs, despite their professions to the contrary, to be bound by a constitutional rarity ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • The Abigail Article; Martyn Bradbury’s Article, and My Response
    . . This blogpost is different to my usual format of reporting on issues… Since July 1011, I have blogged on a variety of political issues; near always political and/or environmental; mostly highly critical of the previous National Government. Other issues included Israeli occupation of Palestinian lands and repression of ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • Police will have to wear silly Buckingham Palace hats from now on, says Police Minister
    Those close to the Police Minister believe the initiative may be the result of Nash “seeing a great deal” on AliExpress. In a move that comes seemingly out of nowhere, Police Minister Stuart Nash announced this afternoon that he expects all frontline staff to don bearskin hats, famously worn by ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • A sensible crackdown
    The government has released its Arms Legislation Bill, containing the second tranche of changes to gun laws following the March 15 massacre. And it all looks quite sensible: a national gun register, higher penalties for illegal possession and dealing, tighter restrictions on arms dealers and shooting clubs, and a shorter ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • California bans private prisons
    Private prisons are a stain on humanity. Prison operators explicitly profit from human misery, then lobby for longer prisons terms so they can keep on profiting. And in the US, prison companies run not only local and state prisons, but also Donald Trump's immigration concentration camps. Faced with this moral ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Why PPPs are a bad idea
    When National was in power, they were very keen on Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) - basicly, using private companies to finance public infrastructure as a way of hiding debt from the public. They were keen on using them for everything - roads, schools, hospitals. But as the UK shows, that "service" ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A Movement That No Longer Moves.
    Moving And Shaking: There was a time when people spoke matter-of-factly about the “labour movement” – a political phenomenon understood to embrace much more than the Labour Party. Included within the term’s definition was the whole trade union movement – many of whose members looked upon the Labour Party as ...
    1 week ago
  • NZ ‘left’ politically embracing extreme postmodernism
    by Philip Ferguson Much of the left, even people who formally identify as marxists, have collapsed politically in the face of postmodern gender theory of the sort pioneered by American philosopher Judith Butler. For Butler even biological sex is socially constructed. “If the immutable character of sex is contested, perhaps ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • The obvious question
    The media is reporting that the (alleged) Labour party sexual assaulter has resigned from their job at Parliament, which means hopefully he won't be turning up there making people feel unsafe in future. Good. But as with everything about this scandal, it just raises other questions. Most significantly: why the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The moment I found out that you found out, I acted swiftly
    By Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern I am every bit as angry as you are. I am every bit as disappointed as you must be. The people with power, oversight and the ability to do something about these processes within the Labour Party should be ashamed. Whoever those people are, I ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • This is why people hate property developers
    Property developers think there is an "oversupply" of houses in Auckland:High turnover rates and falling prices may be a sign that there are too many new houses going in to some parts of Auckland, commentators say. [...] Property developer David Whitburn said there was a "bit of an oversupply" in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Australia to Pacific: “Fuck you, you can all drown”
    World leaders are meeting in New York in two weeks for the 2019 Climate Action Summit, where they are expected to announce new and more ambitious targets to stop the world from burning. But the Australian Prime Minister won't be there, despite being in the USA at the time:Scott Morrison ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Implausible ignorance
    Labour Party president Nigel Haworth resigned yesterday over the party's sexual assault scandal. But while that's good news, its unlikely to take away the stench of a coverup. Because according to Paula Bennett in Parliament yesterday, pretty much everyone in the Prime Minister's office was involved as well:I have been ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Labour’s Fatal Flaw.
     Two-Faced? Labour insiders' commitment to the neoliberal status quo puts them at odds with their party’s membership; its trade union affiliates; and a majority of Labour voters, but this only serves to strengthen the perception they have of themselves as a special elite. Among the lesser breeds, they’ll talk up a ...
    1 week ago
  • 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 ...
    1 week 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 ...
    1 week 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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 ...
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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 ...
    2 weeks ago

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