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Open mike 29/04/2011

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, April 29th, 2011 - 53 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post. For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the link to Policy in the banner).

Step right up to the mike…

53 comments on “Open mike 29/04/2011 ”

  1. Jenny 1

    A new reason not to vote National.

    “…a natural coalition partner.”

    As if we needed another reason.

    Yesterday Dr Brash seized control of ACT after rolling leader Rodney Hide in an extraordinary coup that will see him lead the party from outside Parliament till the November 26 election.

    It’s amazing what money can do.

  2. Lazy Susan 2

    So this nasty bit of Act business gets completed in the week that Key is otherwise engaged in an overseas photo-op far from the media pack that for once might start asking some difficult questions. How convenient!

    Middle New Zealand is being played by the Key Corporation big time – when will people wake up?.

    • logie97 2.1

      There’s truble at mill!
      Founding members of ACT are peeved at the way Brash has gone about things…

  3. rosy 3

    On the ‘we all have the same opportunities’ theme….
    Health inequalities are being shown to affect learning Performance improved 12% when problems with eyesight, hearing and dental care were fixed.

    A Linwood College research project – Lane (Literacy and Numeracy Empowerment) – showed that issues with eyesight, hearing and oral health were stopping young people from learning, and leading to behavioural problems in the classroom.

    young people were supposed to have their eyesight tested by a GP, but the system was not working to ensure children who needed glasses would get them. The Government was wasting money on numeracy and literacy programmes which would not help those pupils with a health barrier to learning.

    Thousands of pupils across the country were most likely also failing academically because of undiagnosed health issues.

    and health inequalities are implicated in a increase in skin infections that can no longer contained by individual DHBs

    An Otago University study, published in the international journal Epidemiology and Infection, has found the rate of children admitted to hospital with severe skin infections nearly doubled between 1990 and 2007, from about 3 to nearly 5.5 per 1000 children.

    About 100 children are now being admitted to hospital every week for severe skin infections.

    Associate Professor Michael Baker, one of the study authors, said most children needed intravenous antibiotics and one in three ended up having surgery.

    The rates – which are more than twice those in Australia and the United States – had always been bad but were now totally unacceptable, he said.

    • Vicky32 3.1

      “young people were supposed to have their eyesight tested by a GP, but the system was not working to ensure children who needed glasses would get them. The Government was wasting money on numeracy and literacy programmes which would not help those pupils with a health barrier to learning.”

      When I worked in the Waikowhai Intermediate library in 1996, two women turned up to check the hearing and eyesight of the Form 1 kids. They screeched at me to stop work as I was making too much noise (yeah right!). I in turn queried the fact that they were calling *only* the Maori and Island kids, when they were supposed to test every child!
      The Maori tester told me, along with a lot of “colourful metaphors” that she couldn’t give a stuff about white or Asian kids.
      Too bad for any white or Asian kids at Waikowhai who had sight or hearing problems and no $$ to go to a GP about it…
      (Although on the second day, I did see two white kids, ones I actually knew from our church. They had been summoned because their GP had asked the testers to check them, and because their mother was on the staff of the school, and yes, they did have sight problems!)

      • logie97 3.1.1

        As part of the rationalisation under “Tomorrows Schools” the Hearing and Vision service changed. Rather than all students being tested, it has become the responsibility of the classroom teacher to refer children for monitoring. The weight of hearing problems in your experience had probably been considered to be within the Polynesian children.

        You may have enjoyed the luxury as a child of having a considerable amount of health checks through your school life. You may remember every school had its resident Dental Nurse. Now they are an itinerant group and dental care is becoming more random – if a child is absent on the occasions of being called then tough it would seem.

        • rosy

          it has become the responsibility of the classroom teacher to refer children for monitoring

          Interesting… what a trial for the teachers – 30-odd pupils and they have to work out which ones can’t see or hear properly rather than having learning difficulties or not enough sleep, or… ??? Surely it’s better to just test them all rather than relying on a teacher whom I assume does not have medical/psychology qualifications? Plus the very nature of testing the whole class can be turned into a valuable learning experience appropriate for the age group, I would have thought (e.g biology, public health).

          • logie97

            That’s the problem when you allow bean counters to manage and influence education. It was forecast by many in the teaching business when Picot was doing the government’s bidding in the 80’s. Tomorrow’s Schools was only ever about reducing costs. The trouble is that bean counters, moteliers and currency traders are still meddling in the classroom – they went through the education system and are therefore experts. Imagine a teacher telling an accountant how to do his job

        • Vicky32

          Oh yes, I went through all that when my son was about 9 years old, and came off a swing at school, breaking a front tooth. I had to spend a day travelling across Auckland to find a school with a dental nurse, first making an appointment…
          I would not have queried any of it if not for what the angry young tester woman said to me about not being interested in any kids who weren’t Maori or Islanders.. the issue being that there were provably non Maori kids in need of her services, and she had to be made to test them!

  4. todd 4

    The week that was – 22 to 29 April


    Last Friday, 11 brave activists occupied the world’s second largest oil rig, the Leiv Eiriksson, which was en route from Turkey to Greenland to begin drilling in Arctic waters.  The Greenpeace protestors made their way to a gangway 80ft over the massive vessel’s starboard stern and called for an end to reckless deepwater drilling.

    • fizzleplug 4.1

      how is this NOT an illegal boarding?

      • Bored 4.1.1

        Fizz, get the picture. What the hell would be the point of a protest by boarding the rig legally…who would take any notice?

        Get the other half of the picture..if the drillers have the law on their side what the hell else can you do but break it?

        • fizzleplug

          Obey it?

          • Bored

            And????? Dont you get that you do what you need to do?

          • prism

            Fizplug You sound like the forces personnel who will carry out any outrage that they are ordered to – because if it’s allowed that’s all right. These protesters are acting as intelligent thinking individuals not unthinking yes-men.

  5. M 5

    As Don and John are such good buddies they might want to visit this site:


    Don Johns anyone?

  6. Bored 6

    Love the fact that we posted a few hundred blogs yesterday about a fight between a pair of retards for the leadership of a moribund crew of moneyed representatives of a failed ideology. It all added up to little but the pre match warm up at an Ultimate Fight event, us the slavering fans screaming at the manufactured distraction, ignoring the meteor coming through the roof that will terminate round 2.

    In case you have not noticed the real fight going on beyond this pathetic tag match is our reliance upon expiring fossil fuels to keep us consuming in order to prop up a finance system deep in the proverbial….in turn creating the greatest environmental crisis man has ever faced. Seeya Wodders, I have better things to watch.

  7. todd 7

    GASLAND will be screening on SBS1 at 9:35 on Sunday 1st of May. Check it out, it’s really good.

    Gasland is a 2010 American documentary film written and directed by Josh Fox. The film focuses on communities in the United States impacted by natural gas drilling and, specifically, a stimulation method known as hydraulic fracturing.


  8. felix 8

    Fuck me has anyone ever figured out how to string up a line-trimmer so it auto feeds the monofilament as it goes?

    Sick of this shit. Srsly.

    • Bored 8.1

      You need three hands………actually the reel challenge is getting the line wrapped in equal lengths in the same direction on the spool, and prior to pushing onto the rotor getting the ends out through the holes. The day you manage to do this easily and the stuff runs out quickly on a big job…back to square one.

      • prism 8.1.1

        What do you know that’s what I need to know I think. Line trimme, weed eater, I hope to win my garden/lawn back with that help.. I’ve yet to try but will be following instructions hopefully for success instead of sucks again.

    • Pascal's bookie 8.2

      By line trimmer, do you mean ‘goat’?

      If not, then no.

    • Sam 8.3

      Yes, you ditch the convential line trimmer attachement and by one called “Little Juey”. Easy and it works a lot better without hassles. (www. littlejuey.com)
      I bought one at a homeshow 3 years ago and it now does give me the time to blog and stir the pot.

    • Mac1 8.4

      I thought your comments at first referred to politics, Felix, which got me to thinking.

      Political weeds needing a free-flowing monofilament.

      Brash grass, a monocultural hybrid, promiscuous in growth habits, with a propensity to morph and to colonise other weeds and their patches.

      Flourishes with age and is a precursor to invasion by much more shade-loving species. Its genetic material is easily transferred to other weeds.

      Banksia is another invasive weed which spreads by piggy-backing on other material and like brash grass will dominate a garden even with a small hold in the soil.

      Epsom salts seem to make it flourish even more and it seeks the light of the garden as it detests shade.

      Like brash grass, banksia, or John’s Worst as it is sometimes known, will colonise readily and changes the very nature of the soil to create right conditions for growth. Slashing it back only encourages regrowth. If left alone, it will colonise all of Auckland, parts of which are ideal country for Banksia spread.

      Dancing Rodders, a colourful hybrid with yellow foliage, has been successfully uprooted in the Epsom area and clings to a short period of life in the political garden before transportation to the manure heap where it will again seek to thrive.

      There are other weeds in the hothouse of political growth, and further postings will identify and propose how to get rid of them.

      • ak 8.4.1

        heh – yes very persistent that nasty Brash grass, prolific rooter in viagric conditions for such an ugly dessicated weed….toxic companion to more delicate species, particularly keyknockkneedius pansiarsum
        Chuck the monofilament away and replace with piano wire or motorbike cable inner – and watch your toes!

        • Mac1

          Keysia, not be confused with Keynesia, is an opportunistic flourisher which also colonises the centre of the garden in order to allow shadier weeds to infest quietly. It has expensive growth habits, waves gently in the breeze and travels widely as it has developed very efficient dispersal habits using others’ means of propulsion.

          Britannica Williamensis is an interesting plant with a growth habit which has its root system in Otago and Southland but flowers appear only in Wellington.

          Gerriensis brownleaf likes to grow near cattle silage pits and needs constant feeding and watering. It has a ferocious growth habit and hates competition which it will banish to allow full access to water. It hates democritas ecan. Gerriensis is a climber and thrives in stairwells where its combative growth habit brooks no rivals. It is morphing into a new species, Gerriensis Rex, and is looking to spread outwards from its Canterbury seeding ground. It is slow to recover in broken or disturbed ground.

          • felix

            I never would have guessed that my simple outburst of frustration with the garden tools would lead to such cleverness, Mac1. Brilliant.

        • JD

          How about Hughsia pedolisium – prone to parasitically exploiting members of the same species.

      • ianmac 8.4.2

        Thats very clever Mac1

        • Bored

          As a gardener seconded, fantastic. What weed killer do you use Mac1?

          • Mac1

            Weed control.

            These weeds should not be cultivated because they cannot be, never were and never will be. The ‘sauvage’ or in Latin ‘ferox’ genus in which these weeds are found is feral, fecund and far-spreading.

            They are susceptible to being pulled out by the roots but care must be taken with disposal of the waste material. They will return as their seeds remain dormant until they sense the right conditions.

            A good all-purpose dosing with good humours can sometimes negate the toxicity of these weeds though care must be taken as over-application can be hard on the user.

            Organic sprays have been tried in the past but the hard carapace of their outer leaves acts as a deterrent as does their unique ability to shed leaves when required in adverse conditions or when threatened. Individuals will even sacrifice themselves for the good of the species eg actus cachus, or dancing rodders, but usually they are transplanted into favourable ground away from the main plot.

            They have little social organization so competition between sauvage species tends to restrict their growth as does generations of in-breeding which can give rise to ineffectual strains such as the native variety which inhabits the littoral and unitus futurus var. dunn., a solitary growing plant with a distinctive top display.

            The best method however is liberal use of suffragium generalis around mid to late November. That should see the pests go to ground for at least three years.

    • KJT 8.5

      Not possible!

    • Lanthanide 8.6

      I gave up and just bought the thickest line I could get from the warehouse. The really thick stuff breaks much less often, and cuts through most grass just as well as the thinner types.

  9. millsy 9

    Well people, Don Brash (70) will be crowned as ACT leader this weekend. John Banks (64) will probably be signed up as ACT’s Epsom candidate, and Roger Douglas (73) will prossibly decide that his grandson’s cricket matches may have to wait another couple of seasons, after all, who would pass up an opputunity to work with one of neo-liberalism’s high preists. I’m waiting for them to dust Ruth Richardson off. We might have our very own Gang of Four.

    You thought that visiting the doctor was expensive? You wait till it costs the same as visiting the dentist. Taxes too high? Just wait till you have to have to pay sky high health insurance premiums and dedictibles, or ever increasing school fees for your children, or road tolls to get to work – remember Maurice Williamson’s $5 charge to use Auckland’s motorways?

    And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

    John Key has pretty much ruled out Don Brash for Finance, or Deputy PM, but he is a dangerous man whatever portfolio he will have, even if he was Associate minister for youth affairs he would find some way to make huge cuts to the standard of living of most New Zealanders — those in the middle would find themselves living like beneficiaries, and those at the bottom, well, you only need look at the USA for their fate.

    You want a reason to vote Labour. Well, this may be a pretty flimsy reason, but fuck, if we are going to preserve the tiny bit of the New Zealand we all know and love, we are just going to have to bite the bullet and choose the lesser evil, That is a fact. We need to swing in behind the Labour Party. Even if Goff is the leader. There is too much at stake now.

  10. ZeeBop 10

    Don brash lied when he said govt debt puts us up with Portugal, Greece, Ireland.
    Unlike those countries its not our public govt debt that’s the problem.
    Why did Brash lie? Will he continue to be inept about the state of the economy?
    Will someone please tell him we’re nothing like Portugal, Greece, Ireland,
    our debt problem is held by privately.

    • KJT 10.1

      Just look at the “success” in NZ, Ireland the UK and USA. All four are failing rapidly while the Western European countries with socialist mixed economies are doing much better.

      NZ. 4% rise in GDP since 1980 while the OECD had 28%.
      83% rise in labour productivity with only 15% rise in average wages. Median family incomes dropped in the same period.
      Manufacturers out of business as the “long past its use by date” Reserve bank ACT makes the $NZ rise to suit speculators.
      Wages for skilled people as against financial jugglers dropped 40%.
      2/3 drop in business investment in NZ because savvy business people know that low waged economies cannot support business.
      Huge loss of skilled people to Australia which did not get totally taken by voodoo economics.
      Balance of payments permanently in deficit except when the voodoo causes a recession.
      Socialised losses cause even more problems as we have to bail out failed financiers and buy back essential infrastructure when it is asset stripped into the ground.
      60% of everything produced now flows offshore as interest.

      I could go on, but that should be enough.

      We need Labour to wake up so we have an alternative!

      • prism 10.1.1

        kjt Perhaps we should go Green with a salad dressing of Mana with Hone providing some chile pepper sharpness. Labour makes good porridge, but bit stodgy however may have advantage over others for long term nutrition. Flights of fancy – are the thing today!

    • Draco T Bastard 10.2

      Why did Brash lie?

      Part of the Shock Doctrine.

      • marsman 10.2.1

        Why did Brash lie? You mean why DOES Brash lie and then ask why DOES Key lie, English lie, Brownlee lie,…..

        • Sam

          You could also ask – where does Goff lie?

          • Drakula

            Goff lies a weeny bit left of Key in the political garden I would suggest plenty of their compost for the nutrition of the Greens – – -Oh no second thoughts – – I forgot the Keysia is a toxic weed I wonder if it has cross polinated with Goffius Laberanthium!!!!!!

            Two days ago I just wrote to Chromium Hidercide to ask him to keep his promise of putting a cap on rates (Local Bodies) above the rate of inflation.

            Remember? Because he’s been turning yellow!!!!

            The Selwyn District Council, propose to put the rates of my community (Lake Coleridge) up 15% on top of 20% last year.

            Here a question for you lot; will he be able to answer my letter?

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  • School upgrades and new classrooms for West Coast, Tasman and Canterbury
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  • Minister of Foreign Affairs makes three diplomatic appointments
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