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Open Mike 29/03/2017

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, March 29th, 2017 - 36 comments
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36 comments on “Open Mike 29/03/2017”

  1. During last year’s interminable arguments about the bombardment of east Aleppo, we were often assured that the writing of “independent journalists” Eva Bartlett and Vanessa Beeley should carry more weight than western media reports, as they had actually visited the places they were reporting on. My view that they were regime shills was derided.

    Now that the siege is over, actual journalists are able to visit east Aleppo, and the difference between a journalist and a regime shill becomes apparent. A regime shill, for example, never issues the following rather important disclaimer:

    Whether people say what they think or parrot government lines can be hard to judge. Journalists going into Assad’s Syria are assigned a government minder, who follows them around, listens to interviews and reports back to the ministry of information. Hearing what happened to others who opposed the government, it is hard to know how honest east Aleppians who live surrounded by army checkpoints and Assad’s face gazing down from posters can be about, say, whether they sympathised with the rebels, or what they think of the president.

    Posted to assist the more gullible readers to be less of a sucker next time.

  2. Tamati Tautuhi 2

    A lot of conflicting information was coming out of Syria, I don’t think Assad is an angel and neither is Putin, however the chaos and carnage of these civil wars in Iraq, Libya and Syria have left these countries in a mess. The general population were in a better situation before interference by the West?

    Dialogue I think is a better alternative to the B52 Bombers?

    • I don’t think the Russian air force operates B52s. In any case, apart from Iraq, the situations of the countries you mention aren’t the result of “interference by the West.”

  3. AsleepWhileWalking 3

    If we had “enhanced” TSA patdowns, would our tourism industry collapse?

  4. AsleepWhileWalking 4

    Mass exodus of (Ka?)boomers out of the stock market now underway.

  5. saveNZ 5

    Good on Judge Pat Grace for giving CYFS a reality check – CYFS seem to have lost their focus on the wellbeing of children and more a focus on trying to short change them to save money!

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/327687/judge-hits-back-at-cyf-threat-to-take-children

    • Sabine 5.1

      Well that is what government wants? No? Same with Winz, Healthcare and Education.
      So who is to blame, the pencil pusher who will be given one pencil per year, or the Minister holding the portfolio allocating one pencil per year per worker?

  6. saveNZ 6

    They way the government is running everything into the ground sounds like they can’t retain any social workers… Next step, import in cheaper social workers…

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/324857/social-worker-shortage-leaving-children-at-risk,-say-lawyers

    The governments long term plan is to run down CYPS so it can outsource it to Serco types, or whoever runs the Nauru facilities at double the cost for 1/2 the quality of workers…

    • ianmac 6.1

      I think that during the 90s the Government strategy was to place impossible guidelines/targets on Health so that the Health system would be perceived to have collapsed. Then the Private (USA) System would have to step in and “save the day.”
      I think that the steady Privatisation of the UK Health is doing that right now.

      So is CYPS getting the same sort of pressure? It may be.

  7. One Anonymous Bloke 7

    Yeah, you’re so respectful and tolerant you employ low-life trash like Cameron Slater and Jordan Williams.

    [TheStandard: A moderator moved this comment to Open Mike as being off topic or irrelevant in the post it was made in. Be more careful in future.]

    • Jordan 7.1

      I’m not condoning anything Jordan Williams or Cameron Slater may have said or done, but in complete honesty, commenters on here are just as nasty as commenters on Whaleoil. The attacks are always personal, vitriolic, and add nothing to the conversation.

      ( I read Kiwiblog, The Standard and Whaleoil daily, and often read the comments on Whaleoil and The Standard).

      (I know a lot of you on here dislike David Farrar, which surprises me, because he is by far the most tolerant and intelligent commentator of all the major bloggers.)

      [your original comment was on topic enough, but this isn’t and just looks like a derail for your hobbyhorse. You can talk about this in OM but a warning to both you and OAB to not escalate this in terms of flaming. Thanks – weka]

      • RedLogix 7.1.1

        The attacks are always personal, vitriolic, and add nothing to the conversation.

        Yeah the right has Slater, we have OAB.

        • marty mars 7.1.1.1

          harsh mate, a bit harsh – OAB adds a lot to the conversation imo and certainly isn’t always personal and vitriotlic – it takes all sorts thank goodness

      • Hi again, Jordan:polite question for you at 9:00 am – thanks.

      • Cinny 7.1.3

        I’m sorry Jordan but I have to strongly disagree with you. As a female who has a very keen interest in politics I’ve tried to have discussions on both Slater and Farrars blogs, not a happening thing, both blogs are riddled with commenters who use disgusting degrading language, bullying behaviour and attacks on women. I do read their blogs and have done for years, but dare not comment again for fear of being personally attacked etc etc.

        Kiwiblog appears to be the worst for this and Whale oil commenters seem to prefer to share photos of their dinner and music videos rather than discussing politics.

        But I find here at the Standard the debate can be robust, but it does not get nasty, and it is extremely intelligent, a great blog to learn about politics and the system. The Standard is awesome, and I keep returning, to read, share, learn and understand more without being bullied or called names. And thankfully I’m not subjected to endless photos of peoples dinner.

        A big THANKS to the admin and the commenters at TS for their maturity and insight

        • rhinocrates 7.1.3.1

          I have an old friend who made the mistake of challenging the Penguin on his blog. The consequences were that her pre-adolescent children were threatened, including attempts to discover their school’s address.

          I wouldn’t call him tolerant or intelligent by any stretch.

  8. DRUM 8

    I do social work in the disability sector and often liase with CYFS staff for a variety of reasons. The CYFS staff I work along side of are, with a few exceptions, dedicated and committed professionals wanting best outcomes for children. The problems they have are excessive case-loads and limited resources (staff/$$). Those two problems create enormous pressures and regularly CYFS social workers are caught in the situation where they can’t make the best decisions.

    • saveNZ 8.1

      What can you expect with ‘Dame’ Paula Rebstock doing the reviews!! A known expert of child welfare. sarc.

    • North 8.2

      My personal understanding through another very close to me (like months, years of depression, financial distress) is that there are significant numbers in positions of high seniority in CYF who are mindless bureaucrats, permitted indeed encouraged, to deploy their racism and their authoritarianism against thoroughly committed and experienced social workers whose care for and defence of ‘the young person’ is seen as repugnant and employment offensive. Damn……I think I’ll call Hager.

      Remember the name ‘Whakatakapokai’. ‘Care and protection’ in New Zealand is a scandal.

      ‘Administrators’ unversed in social work or common sense or decency. Loathsome soldiers in the loathsome Bennett’s ‘factory’. That one who claims to be Maori when it suits the cow.

  9. Draco T Bastard 9

    Paralysed man regains arm movement using power of thought

    For Bill Kochevar, paralysed from the neck down for eight years after a cycling accident, it was a personal triumph. Using his own arm and hand, he scooped forkfuls of mashed potato from a bowl into his mouth.

    For the team of biomedical engineers at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio, Mr Kochevar’s restored ability to feed himself was a milestone in neurotechnology. He was the world’s first quadriplegic patient to regain some limb movement electronically, using a brain implant that enabled him to reanimate long-dormant muscles through the power of thought.

    One step closer to full cyborg.

    Still, great achievement.

  10. Cinny 10

    The incoming PM Andrew Little and his deputy Jacinda Arden came to town, and once again it was standing room only as they spoke to a packed venue and introduced Nelson Labour Party Candidate Rachel Boyack.

    Awesomesauce 😀

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/90945360/labour-leader-andrew-little-makes-election-year-promises-to-nelson-voters

  11. saveNZ 11

    Targeted rates likely coming to Auckland: Finance Minister Steven Joyce

    Housing developments north of Auckland could soon be charged higher targeted rates to help fund infrastructure.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11827581

    Yep, we knew that Auckland Council and the National government were going to make the rate payers pay for it. Yep Auckland council can fund Westfield mall developments, billion dollar stadiums for tourists and billions on failed IT for the failed supercity, but the locals are expected to face higher payments for housing as well as less services.

    Not sure how that is helping affordability of rents or houses? And you still have to get into wherever you are going…. Who’s paying for that… more taxes?

  12. mary_a 12

    Seems any part of the connection to Brand Key can get away with anything, including filming in restricted areas in Parliament! Sickening!

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11827800

  13. Karen 13

    For anybody who is even vaguely interested in Auckland’s transport problems this is by far the best summary of the situation now, how it got to be like it is and what needs to be done (but probably won’t be).

    http://thespinoff.co.nz/auckland/29-03-2017/aucklands-transport-crisis-how-it-was-made-and-why-it-will-only-get-worse/

    I know most of you seem to live in the South Island but that hasn’t stopped you commenting on Auckland issues in the past, so I am assuming there is some interest.

    • Whispering Kate 13.1

      Read the entire post, handed it over to my partner. Full agreement about the chaos which is Auckland City. I have a relative who lives in the inner city and it becomes even more a nightmare trying to visit. We frequently use buses to come into the inner city but its becoming gridlock. I always wonder how business carries on, firms and tradies must lose thousands of dollars annually in lost time idling in traffic.

      To get to a hospital for an appointment one has to set aside at least 2 hours just to journey there and likewise for the return journey- to get anywhere these days is a nightmare. Do these politicians and Auckland Super City Council actually realise what a hell of a clusterfuck they have created. Poor old Robbie must despair and turn in his grave seeing what his vision has turned into.

      The inner city should be pedestrianised to start with – get the cars out of the city. How many major cities world wide have their inner city streets cluttered up with cars. High Street, Lorne Street, all the other small streets should ban cars, Queen Street cries out for a central tram (vintage ones would be lovely for tourists and the look of the city) running up and down the street for shoppers etc to get on and off – it should take them up to K. Road and on to Ponsonby Road. Cars should be not allowed.

      Its never going to happen, Government hates Auckland guts and stymies them at every turn, the Council sit on your backsides and cannot agree. We just do not have the vision or the attitude to make change.

  14. Sabine 14

    that presidential clown was voted in and promoted to ‘cut regulations, bring back coal, deport ‘illegals’ arrest evildoers, outlaw abortion and abortifacts such as the pill or iud, defund public education, defund science, and sell anything that is not nailed to a wall to the highest bidder.

    and he was better then his counterpart cause he was ‘self funded’, not’ compromised’ by big fincance, not of the ‘elite’, and he would work with the russians in bringing middle east peace, and he would prevent world war three.

    so doing away with environmental regulations is just what he was elected to do.

    [TheStandard: A moderator moved this comment to Open Mike as being off topic or irrelevant in the post it was made in. Be more careful in future.]

    • Sabine 14.1

      This post was in direct response to the post.
      This guy was elected to do away with regulations.
      He was elected to undo what little the US has done in environmental protection.
      Heck you can now shoot hibernating bears and their cubs, cause if you kill the wilderness you don’t need no wilderness protection.

      and many many really believed the crap he said, hoped against reason that he was better then the other candidate precisely for the reasons i listed.

      So yes, doing away with environmental protection, stating that climate change is a ‘chinese hoax’ and that the ‘chinese get money out of the paris accords’ and that coal jobs are coming back is what is leading to this.

      You might not like it, but it is in direct response to your diary.

      These guys do not care about the world, they don’t care about polluting it, they don’t care about impoverishing it and they don’t care about your or anyone elses fears as they truly believe they can buy a way out for them-self.

      You have no more importance to them t hen the mexican fruitpicker in the deportation centre.

      Sometimes one should not support ‘change’ and ‘draining the swamp’ just for the sake of it.

      Voting and supporting candidates has consequences. Sometimes even for those that live far far away.

      • North 14.1.1

        I hope CV’s (et al) outrageous vanity is listening to you Sabine. Doubt they will, such is their fetid hubris, but at least you put it out there.

  15. AsleepWhileWalking 15

    The person I think of when I think of climate change is not Trump, but Dane Wiggington.

    Dane has worked tirelessly against tremendous ignorance to bring to light the reality of geoengineering, in particular the widespread spraying of aluminum into our atmosphere ie chemtrails – check out his bio below BEFORE you dismiss him outright

    http://www.geoengineeringwatch.org/ads/dane-wigington/

    I think it is pointless to debate temperature when in the background there is an existing global program of this nature that will inevitably undermine all other attempts at preventing more harm to our planet.

    [TheStandard: A moderator moved this comment to Open Mike as being off topic or irrelevant in the post it was made in. Be more careful in future.]

    • Bill 15.1

      I think it is pointless to debate temperature when…

      So the idea is to sit back and carry on as normal because geo-engineering?

      Vast planetary experiments that are only ever going to be desperate shots into the dark given the complexity of the systems in question?

      That’s not acceptable from any perspective laying claim to any level of sanity.

      Exploring geo-engineering options is one thing. Relying on them quite another.

      edit – Jesus wept. My bad. He’s not a scientist exploring geo-engineering, but a conspiracy nut convinced it’s happening already. No further comment.

  16. North 16

    What an excessive wee wanker…….algud daddy approves……Robertson Road……Robertson Road.
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=11827800

  17. Andrea 17

    As this is Open Mike:

    Today my quarterly bank statement arrived. I have been saving like a demented squirrel and the amount is considerably plumper than a couple of years ago.

    I looked at the interest earned.

    Looked again.

    $2.31 before RWT. It used to be between $15 and $20 a month just two years ago…

    The OCR is 1.75%. The Blessed ANZ pays 0.10% on its online account. Before RWT.

    And some people squawk on about ‘saving for your retirement’. If you can.

    No mention of the risk of ‘investing’ with ‘we take our management fees upfront. or play the market with your pitiful dollars’ people.

    0.10%. Can’t this government run an economy for the prudent?

  18. lloyd 18

    The market for coal-fired power stations in the USA is poor, as fracking has produced cheap natural gas which can be burnt in plants which can be built faster than coal boiler plants. Therefore “cheap coal” won’t big in the USA under Trump. Even if more coal is burnt jobs are unlikely to be produced as any increase in mining effort will almost certainly be undertaken in highly mechanised mining operations.
    Trump would produce more jobs if he encouraged a higher installation rate for solar cells on US homes. Unfortunately he wouldn’t be generating those jobs in places that voted him into power.

    [TheStandard: A moderator moved this comment to Open Mike as being off topic or irrelevant in the post it was made in. Be more careful in future.]

  19. North 19

    Right now, Ahmed Kathadra, BBC Hard Talk. Magnificent South African human being ! Second only to Mandela.

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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government investment to boost Auckland’s community recycling network
    As part of a broader plan to divert waste from landfill, the Government today announced $10.67 million for new infrastructure as part of the Resource Recovery Network across the Auckland region. “This key investment in Auckland’s community recycling network is part of the Government’s Infrastructure Reference Group ‘shovel ready’ projects ...
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    1 week ago
  • Te Papa transformation starts at Cameron Road
    The Government is investing $45 million in the first stage of an ambitious urban development project for Tauranga that will employ up to 250 people and help the region grow, Urban Development Minister Phil Twyford announced today. Phil Twyford says the funding has been allocated out of the $3 billion ...
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    1 week ago
  • PGF supports Hawke’s Bay community and environmental projects
    The Government is investing more than $1.6 million from the Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) for a wide range of community and environmental projects in Hawke’s Bay, Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development Fletcher Tabuteau announced today. These announcements today are part of the Government’s commitment to supporting regional economies in the ...
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    1 week ago
  • Low-emissions options for heavy transport a step closer
    Getting low-emission trucks on the road is a step closer with investment in infrastructure to support hydrogen vehicles, the Energy and Resources Minister Megan Woods has announced. The Infrastructure Reference Group has provisionally approved $20 million for New Plymouth company Hiringa Energy to establish a nationwide network of hydrogen-fuelling stations. ...
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    1 week ago
  • New training centre to upskill workers
    A new trades training centre to upskill the local workforce will be built in the South Waikato town of Tokoroa through funding from the Government’s COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund, Education Minister Chris Hipkins and Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones have announced. The Government will contribute $10.84 million from ...
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    1 week ago