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Open mike 30/01/2023

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, January 30th, 2023 - 84 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post.

For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

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Step up to the mike …

84 comments on “Open mike 30/01/2023 ”

  1. AB 1

    Hooton has a talent for installing duds – Muller, now Brown. He's the tradie from hell.

    • bwaghorn 1.1

      hooton is working for a deep left conspiracy outfit,(could tell you thier name but…) who's roll is to destroy the right-wing, johnkey told me.

      • Shanreagh 1.1.1

        I believe you. I am sure that 1000s wouldn't though.

        But that is Ok as not everybody can be right can they?


  2. Reality 2

    Could it be that he can control them from the back room? Power behind the throne?

    • woodart 2.1

      power behind the throne is comonly called the cistern. hooten should really be in the throne, along with many of his mates.

  3. Visubversa 3

    Forget the "Trans Genocide" rhetoric.

    “Every murder is devastating for those who know the victim. But during the ten-year period between 2013-2022 only four homicides of trans people were recorded in the UK, once reporting errors were corrected. During the same period, 7,118 homicides were recorded in the UK, combining data for England and Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. This suggests that murders of trans people were a tiny fraction of all murders, 0.056 per cent. This is around an order of magnitude lower than the Census estimate of the proportion of trans people in the population at 0.58 per cent. In other words, trans people were greatly underrepresented among homicide victims. Thanks to the Census, trans people can have confidence that they may safely ignore alarmist rhetoric encouraging them to fear for their lives.”


    • weka 3.1

      that's a very good quote. I'd like to see similar analysis of violence against trans men, and trans women, because I suspect this is a problem. But really we need good research on exactly how discrimination against trans people is functioning. Most of what I see is more qualitative than quantitative.

    • Temp ORary 3.2

      No, I am not about to forget the Trans Genocide "rhetoric"; Visubversa. I did look at that Spectator piece, and the linked article about "reporting errors". Leaving aside the tone of the writing, the world is bigger than the UK. I don't have the time to track down all original sources from the other side of the world over the past decade, but here is one case that was excluded as a reporting error in the TMM:

      …found dead in Heron Court, Victoria Road, Worthing on 19 November.

      Two men aged 34 and 63, both from Worthing, were arrested on suspicion of murder and released on bail.

      A 63-year-old man has been charged with assaulting Ms… who was known as Jacqui, on 18 November…

      "Although we are no longer treating her death as suspicious, we are still investigating the assault on her the night before, during which she was injured."


      As well as suffering from depression and epilepsy, she also struggled to control her alcoholism – something she is said to have made great strides to overcome in recent years.”…

      A post-mortemproved inconclusive and further tests are to be carried out to confirm the cause of death. Detective Inspector Gordon Denslow said: “We are still trying to confirm exactly what happened in the hours before her death.


      If I had to guess, I'd say this Jacqui probably killed herself after being assaulted (I've known people in Aotearoa who have gone that way). Which isn't exactly murder, but still less than desirable.

      However the annual; Trans Murder Monitoring (TMM), report itself is upfront with it's methodological limitations. And also that many of those reported murdered are sex workers, as well as being trans (which the "reporting errors" author regards as; "a fact that has been quietly brushed under the carpet."):

      The year 2022 saw 327 reported murders of trans and gender-diverse people between 1 October 2021 and 30 September 2022. With 222 cases, Latin America and the Caribbean remains the region that reported most of the murders…

      • 95% of those murdered globally were trans women or trans feminine people;
      • Half of murdered trans people whose occupation is known were sex workers;

      These numbers are just a small glimpse into the reality on the ground. The majority of the data came from countries with a strong network of trans and LGBTIQ organisations that conduct the monitoring.


      One of the major problems with the TMM is that there is little data from Africa – with its reliance on LGBTIQ organisations providing it to them, given TGEU's limited budget. But what information does come out of that continent is pretty grim, and what doesn't make it out may be worse:

      Being transgender in Kenya can be dangerous. In 2021, her friend was stoned to death by a mob on a beach near the city of Malindi, she said. A few months later, Arya said she was chased by people wielding machetes.

      Arya, 27, said the protections of the safe house have been all the more important over the past week as a backlash against lesbian, gay and transgender Kenyans has flared following the death of LGBTQ rights activist Edwin Chiloba.

      Chiloba's body was found in a metal box on the roadside near the city of Eldoret… "People were going through other gay people's social media saying, 'Have you seen Chiloba? You are next,'" said Arya…

      Amnesty International and other campaign groups last week said there had been increasing cases of sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV), as well as domestic abuse, across Kenya.

      They said there was an "uncoordinated and often reluctant response to SGBV from State and non-state actors" and called on authorities to do more to investigate crimes and work with survivors.


      So turning to now reality of trans genocide; this is not simply the annual death count in any given country (though I am certainly not planning on going to Brazil anytime soon!), but rather seeking to eradicate a group of people from society. The question to me is whether the current laws recognize trans (and wider LGNTQ+) people under the umbrella of; "a national, ethnical, racial or religious group":

      Raphäel Lemkin led the campaign to have genocide recognised and codified as an international crime…

      The International Court of Justice (ICJ) has repeatedly stated that the Convention embodies principles that are part of general customary international law. This means that whether or not States have ratified the Genocide Convention, they are all bound as a matter of law by the principle that genocide is a crime prohibited under international law. The ICJ has also stated that the prohibition of genocide is a peremptory norm of international law (or ius cogens) and consequently, no derogation from it is allowed.


      The ideological constructions of transgender women promoted by gender critical ideologues are particularly genocidal. They share many features in common with other, better known, genocidal ideologies. Transgender women are represented as stealth border crossers who seek to defile the purity of cisgender women, much as Tutsi women were viewed in Hutu Power ideology and Jewish men in Nazi antisemitism. Trans people in general are framed as figures that threaten the wholeness of the patriarchal nuclear family as well as the strength and vitality of national communities, much in the way that ethnic and national targets of genocide are viewed as cosmic enemies of the perpetrator group. Like the religious targets of genocidal violence, trans people are often described as somehow polluted, sinful, or against God. They are blamed for a host of social problems that have nothing to do with them or with the free expression of their identities.


      • Molly 3.2.1

        "…So turning to now reality of trans genocide; this is not simply the annual death count in any given country (though I am certainly not planning on going to Brazil anytime soon!), but rather seeking to eradicate a group of people from society. …"

        This is assumptive rhetoric, familiar, but not proven by any of your links.

        There are counties where the birth of twins is considered witchcraft, yet it would be flawed to conflate that with western birth practices.

        The transgender component has to be isolated out from other factors. As you are no doubt aware, many of the deaths you refer to in Brazil involve those involved in prostitution or the drug trade. Mortality rates are exceptionally high in that environment, transgender or not.

        • Temp ORary

          Citation needed on the drug trade bit; Molly, but many trans people certainly do feel they have few options except sex work (fortunately not so much in Aotearoa). I don't personally feel that sex workers are asking to be killed, any more than someone dressed like a sex worker is asking to be sexually assaulted. I do not feel too confident that I can disentangle the ant- trans from sex-worker motivation in Brazilian murders – just not having any intention going there myself anytime soon.

          I linked to the UN page that quotes text from the 1948 convention:

          In the present Convention, genocide means any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such:

          1. Killing members of the group;
          2. Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group;
          3. Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part;
          4. Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group;
          5. Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group.

          My question is mainly if trans people can be regarded as a "religious group" by the terms of this convention, if the region defining them is not there own. In the USA many anti-laws are promulgated on explicit religious basis, and there is little reason to suppose their present Supreme Court will strike them down on the basis of separation of church and faith.

          More legislation has been filed to restrict the lives of trans people so far in 2022 than at any other point in the nation’s history, with trans youth being the most frequent target of lawmakers…

          Several governors also have put through their own forms of restrictions.

          Earlier this year, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) issued a directive requiring child welfare agents to investigate gender-affirming medical procedures as child abuse — an order that could strip trans children away from their families.


          Texas’ child welfare agency is once again blocked from investigating parents who provide gender-affirming care to their transgender children. The injunction applies to any family that belongs to PFLAG, an LGBTQ advocacy group with more than 600 members in Texas.

          The injunction also specifically protects a handful of families named in the suit, including the Briggles, outspoken advocates for transgender youth who were among the first to be investigated under this directive.

          This is the latest chapter in a monthslong legal battle over whether providing medically indicated gender-affirming health care, under the guidance of a doctor, could result in a finding of child abuse by the state.


          I do know that if someone tried to take my children away to give to dubious care of Oranga Tamariki on the basis of supposed child abuse from following medical advice, I would be going to the courts myself. And if the NZ supreme court supported the decision (if say; a new christo-fascist had been elected and had passed a law requiring this), then taking the NZ government to the International Court of Justice on the basis of facilitating genocide would not seem excessive to me.

          Fortunately that is not the situation here at present. Places like Brazil, Uganda, Afghanistan, and possibly the USA (depending how the 2024 election goes) might be a different case.

          • Molly

            Sex trade is inexorably involved with the drug trade, but it is good to see you acknowledge that the mortality rate in Brazil cannot be attributed to what you refer to as an eradication due to transgender status.

            Children are being removed from families in the US and Australia by the equivalent of Oranga Tamariki, for NOT immediately providing affirming social transition and/or medical or surgical transition. These children, many with co-morbidities, are not assessed for these co-morbidities or undergoing exploratory therapy, they are alienated from their families in order to transition. Your imagined scenario is happening in reverse in reality. But that seems often to be the case, imagined persecution versus actual harm.

            Recent papers following up on the Dutch Protocol long-term outcomes are not supporting of transition of minors. One such can be found here. There are many more. What has always been missing is robust data supporting the transition of minors. Instead there have been non-medically evidenced activist guidelines being taken as fundamental evidence.

            The situation you write of in the state of Texas, is perhaps due to the fact that Texas, unlike California, has looked at the evidence provided for social, medical and surgical transition and found that robust data in respect to net benefits for minors is not available. There is also little quality data available in terms of a positive impact on suicidal ideation. Countries or health authorities who undertake independent literature reviews are unanimously coming to the conclusion that the use of medical or surgical interventions for minors is harmful.

            It is likely that with that information to hand, the Gov of Texas, Greg Abbott, asked the Attorney General to ascertain whether the provision of medical and surgical interventions was detrimental to the well-being of children, and falls into the category of child abuse. The written response is sobering:


            "I do know that if someone tried to take my children away to give to dubious care of Oranga Tamariki on the basis of supposed child abuse from following medical advice, I would be going to the courts myself. And if the NZ supreme court supported the decision (if say; a new christo-fascist had been elected and had passed a law requiring this), then taking the NZ government to the International Court of Justice on the basis of facilitating genocide would not seem excessive to me."

            I have OIA'd the Ministry of Health regarding their guidelines for the medical transitioning of minors, and while appalled, am not surprised to find that our treatment response is the last daisy in a chain that originates from the WPATH guidelines. Once again, guidelines written by activists, without clinical evidence. For this reason, I feel the current medical advice is not only not proven to be beneficial, but given the outcome of actual literature reviews, causes harm. So, I will, along with others be writing to Andrew Little, once more to ask him to do due diligence on this issue, and conduct an independent review of the literature available.

            The constant cry of trans genocide, and suicidal ideation is one that I find hard to forgive, when it comes to young people. This is the only time where constant referrals of self harm is magnified by advocates, despite the evidence that doing so actually increases distress and likelihood of harm. Add to that, the association of people not complying with demands in regards to your declared identity, with bigotry, fascism, hatred, transphobia and eradication, and you have another significant harm done to young people who already have personal issues that are overwhelming.

            I find your rhetoric in this vein and have very little patience with it.

      • Stuart Munro 3.2.2

        They are blamed for a host of social problems that have nothing to do with them or with the free expression of their identities.

        They are also particularly strident when it comes to their 'right' to invade spaces that exclude biological males for safety reasons. By doing so they have largely discredited themselves, not as individuals, but as a thread of advocacy.

        • weka

          it's useful to differentiate between trans women (who hold a wide ranges of beliefs and have a wide range of behaviours, just like other groups), and gender identity activists (aka trans rights activists).

      • weka 3.2.3

        thanks for this in depth post. I agree that we should be noticing a trans woman who kills herself after being assaulted, and society needs to sort out it's shit that so many trans women are doing sex work. We also have to be able to discuss the reasons for that.

        I don't believe that trans people should be included in the definition of peoples affected by genocide. Genocide has a pretty distinct meaning. I also think there is harm in promoting the idea that being trans is a shit experience fraught with danger from murder or suicide. We should be honest about the situations. In the UK murder of trans people is rare. In the US less so, but there from what I understand most are related to sex work or partner violence.

        In the English-speaking world, the only country I am aware of that is trying to roll back trans rights is the US, where the fundamentalist right holds a lot of power. They are doing this to women too. In the UK it's a bit different, because most people there still support the human rights of trans people, while rejecting self-ID and TWAW positions. What that tells me is that there is an opportunity for society to integrate trans people more fully. But I can't see that happening if gender activists carry on the way they are including by misleading the public about trans deaths. We can not frame it as genocide but still acknowledge the tragedies when they happen. I'd like to see liberal attention focused on the number of murders of women too.

        • Temp ORary

          Weka; it's getting on for time to pick up kids from school, so I am running out of time here. Fortunately, since school started up again yesterday I will have more time to be onsite (though not every hour of every day), so will have to get back to you with reasons why I can indeed frame the attempt to eliminate trans people as a form of genocide (though the Lemkin Institute statement covers a lot of it). But it'll have to be on a different day's OM.

          No one is stopping anyone here from focusing on Femicide, which seems to be a worthwhile topic in Aotearoa (though important to acknowledge assaults and problems that fall short of outright murder). I'd certainly rather read that than trans exclusionary arguments from the basis of; Daily Mail, Spectator, and Twitter, sources that I am just not going to click on.

          • weka

            the point is that liberals are focused on identity politics rather than the gnarly issues like women being murdered or raped. Which is why we end up with the ridiculous situation of male rapists being housed in women's prisons and the left saying this is a good thing.

            As for the Daily Mail etc, if liberals want liberal media coverage of the issues they can stop No Debate. But they don't, because then we'd have to actually address the problems.

            There's nothing wrong with excluding people from places they don't belong. I wouldn't argue that I should be allowed into the spaces of TW, despite the fact that I fit under the contemporary trans umbrella.

      • roblogic 3.2.4

        The highlight of Dave Chappelle's recent Netflix special was this story of his transgender friend Daphne.

        "I am having a human experience!"


  4. Stephen D 4

    Pablo telling it like it is.


    ”To be clear, Wayne Brown was elected to cut rates and prioritize public services and amenities to the salubrious Eastern and Northern suburbs where the well-heeled and light-skinned live securely and in comfort (even if, to paraphrase Pink Floyd, hanging on in quiet desperation as well). He was installed to serve the interests of a specific demographic rather than the city and its surroundings as a whole, and is therefore not interested in helping (mostly) brown-skinned opposition voters living in flood plains and gullies. For him, the once-in-a-lifetime storm has been more of a nuisance that interferes with his social schedule than a moment to rise above his own ego and partisan biases in service of the commonweal.”

    • Anne 4.1

      Further excerpt from link:

      "I will leave it for others to dissect the political entrails of this corpse of a mayor but suffice it to say that a politician who cannot even fake empathy and compassion for those in his electorate who have been negatively impacted by the storm (including many who have lost everything, and in four cases, their lives) and who victim-blames those worst affected and finger-points at his subordinates when it comes to assigning responsibility for response delays and “mistakes” while arguing with media in front of cameras during press stand-ups is not fit to be a parking warden, much less mayor of NZ’s largest city."

      What many of us were trying to say yesterday on this site but oh… so much better. laugh

      A big thanks to Pablo.

      • Pablo 4.1.1

        Thanks Anne,

        You are very kind. The post has been updated since this morning with some additional observations about leadership. Cheers.

    • Mac1 4.2

      That article is worth a read. The Peter Principle in practice! We will be asking central government about effective emergency management in this Auckland case and by extension to the rest of New Zealand.

      For this will not be the last event that will test the calibre of our elected representatives and our civil authorities, our insurance schemes and our personal liabilities be they where we live, how we live, or how we cope with all our disabilities, infirmities of age and health in the midst of pandemic and natural calamities.

      Brown could not even acknowledge to interviewer Kim Hill that there is a thing called climate change, FFS.

  5. ianmac 5

    Poll out tonight on TV1. Jessica sounds excited about it so must be good news for her mate Luxon. And may be on on Tv3 as well.

  6. There is one poll that really counts. A great deal may happen between now and then.devil

  7. Stephen D 7

    Now this would put the cat amongst the Putin pigeons.


    “A contingent of military officials is quietly pushing the Pentagon to approve sending F-16 fighter jets to Ukraine to help the country defend itself from Russian missile and drone attacks, according to three people with knowledge of the discussions.”

  8. Herodotus 8

    Something for those who need a distraction form this weeks event and appreciate music from days of old (IMO)

  9. arkie 9

    Oh look:

    Brown has defended himself against criticism that he did not call for a State of Emergency earlier, saying he followed the advice of the professionals when deciding whether to declare an emergency.

    However, today he acknowledged communication with the public on the disaster on Friday fell short.

    "I want to say to Aucklanders that yes there have been hiccups of course.

    "I accept that communications including mine and my office were not good enough, especially on Friday night.


    "I don't think I personally did anything wrong," he said when asked about what "hiccups" he was referring to.

    https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/national/483338/auckland-weather-disaster-mayor-wayne-brown-admits-hiccups-in-response (My bold)

    • Incognito 9.1

      He was MIA, sitting at his desk waiting for the rain to stop or playing tennis or whatever, that was his cardinal professional sin and he is unrepentant. He will not learn from his mistakes when he is unwilling to admit that he made any and he will continue shifting the blame to others although I have not yet heard the emotional-junior-staffer ‘excuse’.

    • woodart 9.2

      its from the trump book of bullshit. "there were mistakes, but not by me" .

  10. Incognito 10

    School's out this week in the greater Auckland area!

    • alwyn 10.1

      They only get this week off?

      In Wellington the Kindergarten Kids are off until the 14th February when they resume. I guess we will find out who the milk monitors will be before then.


    • Belladonna 10.2

      Possibly not the most helpful outcome for people trying to clean up the mess and devastation of their lives.

      Not to mention that there are few (if any) holiday programmes running – so parents who don't have flood damage to clean up, have to take time off work (at very short notice) to care for their pre-teens. Of course, white-collar workers can just work from home (albeit, not very efficiently) – but, amazingly, there are many, many workers who are also parents, who are required to actually be physically present to do their jobs.

      While there are a few schools with flood damage which would need to close – the vast majority would be performing a much better public service by opening.


      Kids are already stir-crazy after the long summer holidays – filled, as it has been, predominantly with bad weather – so not much outside time.

      Anyone who thinks that the vast majority of those kids will just stay quietly at home for the next week – is invited to look at the population at the malls and entertainment complexes over this weekend. Bubbling over with kids and families – and with not a carpark to be found.

      The following quote also seems entirely counter-intuitive.

      "Holsted said schools and kura can open or remain open for onsite instruction but need to provide distance learning."

      How can schools be both open for onsite instruction, and closed until the 7th of February?

      • SPC 10.2.1

        The cited factor was roading/transport.

        • Belladonna

          And my point about the kids/families headed to the malls and entertainment complexes. They're not staying at home. They're still using the roads.

          At the very least, keeping the primary schools open (where the majority of the kids have a short distance to travel – and some even *walk*) – would have taken the load off parents (it's a lot harder to get anything useful done with a 6-year-old in tow, than it is with a 12-year-old).

          By all means, make a different call for individual rural schools (where roading infrastructure is seriously damaged) – but the vast majority of urban/surburban schools have no reason to close.

          Looks like one-size-fits-all thinking, to me.

      • Incognito 10.2.2

        To be fair, some of your concerns have been acknowledged by MoE.


        This is a hard call in and for tough times but on balance I think it is sensible especially with the Code Red Heavy Rain Warnings issued for the next couple of days.

        I can’t find your quote in your link!?

        • Belladonna



          It's the 4th para.

          I'd had two of the articles open (to see if they were saying the same thing) – and linked to the wrong one.

          Apparently it’s the provision that O’Connor at Auckland Grammar is relying on, to allow them to open unless specifically directed by the MoE to close [Grammar actually opened last week, and has borders on site]

          • Incognito

            Newstalk didn’t quote Holsted verbatim, but NZH did and it says something different.

            Assuming the Headmaster doesn’t take his cues from NewstalkZB he should re-read the e-mail he received from MoE unless he has problems with reading comprehension or suffers from wishful thinking syndrome.

            I think you meant boarders.

            • Belladonna

              Only heard O'Connor interviewed – so don't know exactly what coms he had received at the time.

              He said that he'd notified MoE of his intentions to remain open (based on the media reports at the time, since he'd not yet received any official notification) – unless specifically directed otherwise. MoE had acknowledged his email, but not yet responded.

              Just checked, and the RNZ site now contains an update notification, that O'Connor has emailed parents that Grammar will be closed tomorrow (so, clearly he's now received that directive)

              Update: After this interview, Auckland Grammar School Principal emailed parents later on Monday to advise his school will now close until further notice.


              It's difficult to track the timelines on all of this. The interview is timestamped at 6.14 – but that will be a broadcast time (or possibly an update time**), not, necessarily, when O'Connor was interviewed. During the interview, he was adamant that he'd had no notification from the MoE – and it looks as though it wasn't sent out until after 5pm (IT failure).

              **I don't know if the RNZ timestamp changed when the update was added (I don't think so, but don't know of a way to confirm or deny my belief)

              And, you're quite right – I do mean kids who remain during term time, not edges on the map.

              • Incognito

                The Headmaster should have taken a leaf out of the Mayor’s book and waited at his desk for the complete picture to emerge. Now he looks a little foolish for confusing parents even more so just to give his 2 cts. on radio. He should join ACT and consider a career in politics.

                https://www.stuff.co.nz/auckland/local-news/131101944/auckland-schools-must-remain-closed-this-week [16:43, Jan 30 2023]

                4.17pm Auckland schools ordered to remain closed until February 7


                One of the earliest tweets I could find [3:45 PM · Jan 30, 2023]:

                You can check any webpage’s metadata for time stamps.

                • Note that your tweet liknk includes the quote that O'Connor used to justify his stance (it certainly reads as though schools have the option to remain open – but have to provide distance learning)

                  In the absence of formal notification from MoE – I can see why he'd make the assumption that he could continue opening.

                  Don't see that Grammar parents are any more (or less) confused than the rest of us.

                  I received notification at about 10.30 that my teen's school would be open as scheduled this week (since they had relatively minor storm damage, and none to any learning areas). Clearly this was sent before any of the media reports about school closures.

                  Only to have this reversed at 6.30 pm, after the school had received the MoE directive.

                  In the interim, I'd received lots of social media updates on the closure – but the delay in the official notification by MoE (because of their IT issues) – clearly caused some confusion with schools.

                  And, as you've highlighted – the language used in the early reports implied an option (to remain open), which was not evident in the later official communication.

                  • Muttonbird....

                    AGS would have sent out an earlier email today or over the weekend welcoming families back to school and updating on the situation.

                    So O'Conner would have sent three. On, on (when everyone else says off), then off.

                    He was just being an idiot.

                    • Grammar have been back since last week. So, really, quite a different scenario to (for example, as quoted above) Avondale College, which weren't scheduled back – for most of the school – until Friday this week.

                      There's quite an operational difference between delaying the start of school; and starting, then stopping, then starting again.

                      I think O'Connor was looking out for what was best for his students (which is, actually, his job). He was quite clear in the interview, that he would reverse the decision if instructed by the MoE. And, apparantly, that's what he did.

                      AG did no more flip-flops than any other school: if there were, as you said, 3 emails – they were – 'Go', 'Go', 'MoE says we have to Stop'.

                      The problem appears to arise in the delayed (because of IT reasons) of the official MoE communication to schools. The interim social media and media posts have an 'option' to remain open, which is not present in the official notification.

                      In the information vacuum, this was all Grammar had to go on – and they (quite rightly) wanted to let parents know a.s.a.p. (remember, their boys were expecting to be at school on Tuesday morning).

                      No wonder schools were confused.

                      NB: About that IT outage. Given that MoE have the details of the actual starting date for all schools – it doesn't seem unreasonable that they should have got directly in touch with the (few) in the Auckland region who had already started the school year – and let them know directly (since the email had failed). It is, after all, quite a bit more time critical for Grammar to know this, than Avondale.

                    • Incognito []

                      2 – February
                      Admin Day for Year 10 and 11 Students
                      Admin Day for Year 13 Students

                      3 – February
                      Admin Day for Year 12 Students
                      Year 9 Students First Day


                      Another college in the hard-hit West.

                    • Muttonbird....

                      @ Belladonna. Your claim AGS was back the week beginning 23 Jan is just plain wrong and I think you said it for political purposes.

                      AGS was due to welcome all students 31 Jan. Some secondary schools had a graduated return between 31 Jan and 03 Feb.

                    • Their school calendar says all students started on Tuesday the 24th of January (they had orientation for 3rd formers on the previous Friday.)


                      Feel free to tell the parents who sent their sons on that day, that they were wrong.

                      Grammar are well known for always starting their school year before other schools.

                      Your one-eyed response to anything that I say, is just getting boring.

                    • Muttonbird....

                      Makes no difference.

                      O'Conner believed because his students' families were not impacted much by the weather event and its aftermath because the school zone is elite Auckland and not far to travel, that his first reaction should be to defy the government.

                      It plays to his (and your) base, I suppose.

                    • Waiting for the apology.

                      I was not "just plain wrong" – you were.

                      I've provided a link to support my original (correct) statement.
                      You challenged it – put up your source. Or admit you were wrong.

                      Mind you, I won't hold my breath…..

  11. arkie 12

    National loses ground to Hipkins' Labour in two new polls

    The 1News Kantar poll had Labour up 5 percentage points to 38, with National down one percentage point to 37.

    Newshub Reid Research’s poll had Labour up 5.7 percent to 38, ahead of National which lost 4.1 points, dropping to 36.6.



    • Belladonna 12.1

      A definite turn-around for Labour.
      And both polls put TPM in the kingmaker role (which, we know, means a left government – there's no way they're going with National).

      Labour will be looking to build momentum on this.

      Looking towards Hipkins' announcement of the refocused legislative priority list next week.

  12. SPC 13

    Hipkins pips Luxon in the preferred PM poll (and is more trusted) and Labour gets a small bump for managing a smooth transition.

    • ianmac 13.1

      Luxon has been wooing the voters for 12mths +

      Hipkins has been wooing the voters for about a week. Spot the difference?

    • Muttonbird 13.2

      Poor, old David Farrar. He did the usual post highlighting historic preferred PM poll bounce for the benefit of his worried boomer readership.

      Number 1 was Geoffrey Palmer who recorded a 16% preferred PM bounce in 1989.

      Chippy from the Hutt Valley smashed that with a 44% increase on Palmer's bounce.

      Massive backfire for the Taxdodger's Union.

      [Please lose the 4 dots from your user name next time thanks – Incognito]

  13. Shanreagh 14

    I did notice on my twitter feed but cannot find now that there was an objection from a member of the public to one of the evacuation centres asking for N95 disposable respirators on the usual grounds of Covid19 not being real and/or if it was real it had passed.

    I just could not imagine anything worse than getting Covid in a shelter while dealing with the loss of your home, furniture and possibly your car.

    Where have these horrible people come from…..don't answer, I know. I think any thoughts that time would put all the anti vaxxer madness behind us is off beam, they have been politicised and are walking among us.

    Even on local authorities and now making a concerted campaign to win seats on Conservation Boards.

    This is to hearken back to the roots of one wing of VFF and that is as campaigners against 1080. DoC has 1000s of hectares of land to undertake pest control on. Whatever your views on 1080 in some cases it is best suited to the topography.

    • Anne 14.1

      They're the descendants of the mob back in time who burnt/beat clever women to death because they were believed to be witches and who executed anyone who dared to suggest the earth was a round. (tongue in cheek):

    • weka 14.2

      … DoC has 1000s of hectares of land to undertake pest control on. Whatever your views on 1080 in some cases it is best suited to the topography.

      Assuming this is true (and it probably is), DOC uses 1080 in landscapes that are suitable for other methods like trapping. Farmers do too.

      • arkie 14.2.1

        It is sadly more efficient economically. DoC is under-resourced for the scale of the work they are expected to do, and they are reliant on volunteers who can only do so much and often not as regularly as to be effective.

      • Shanreagh 14.2.2

        Yes I realise that & that is why the effort to stand for the boards.

  14. joe90 15


    • Belladonna 15.1

      Why do you think he's an idiot (in this particular instance)?

      Case in point. The primary school nearest to me (inner Auckland suburb) – on a ridge, little or no storm/water damage. 95% of the pupils live less than 10 minutes drive away (no school buses) – an awful lot of them walk to school (walking school buses).

      There is, however, flood damage in the school catchment area. And some of the families will be continuing to clear up the associated mess and damage – and trying to deal with the various 3rd parties (insurance, water, electricity, Council, etc.).

      The best thing that the Ministry of Education could do for those families, would be to open the school on schedule.

      The result of closing the school:

      A. Parents trying to clear up storm damage, will continue to do so, while simultaneously caring for their children.

      B. Parents with no storm damage, will have to take additional time of work, at very short notice, to care for their children. No holiday programmes operating.

      C. A very large number of the B. category, will be hitting the entertainment complexes and/or malls (local parks sodden, beaches off limits, kids going stir-crazy at home) – and will drive there (i.e. result = more cars on the roads, not fewer)

      While I can see, on a case-by-case basis, there might well be a good argument for a rural school, with significant storm damage to the surrounding roading network, to be closed – there seems to be very little benefit to closing the vast majority of inner city and suburban schools.

      • SPC 15.1.1

        You could consider replying to those who responded to David Seymour's tweet.

        There is, however, flood damage in the school catchment area. And some of the families will be continuing to clear up the associated mess and damage – and trying to deal with the various 3rd parties (insurance, water, electricity, Council, etc.).

        Teachers have homes too.

        • Belladonna

          Gosh. And so do nurses and doctors, and wastewater engineers and supermarket workers. Should we shut all of those places of employment down as well?

          Teachers are neither more nor less privileged than any other worker who is required (for the most part) to be present in order to do their job.

          Principals who have a small number of teachers who need to be absent in order to deal with stormwater damage – can call on their relief-teacher network (just as they do in case of illness or family emergency).

          Principals who have a very large number of teachers impacted might well choose to close their school.

          It's the one-size-fits-all approach I have an issue with.

      • Drowsy M. Kram 15.1.2

        The Secretary for Education as directed a four-day closure.


        Auckland is currently in a State of Emergency.

        Earlier today, the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) asked us to take action to help minimise traffic movement on Auckland roads while vital infrastructure is urgently repaired.

        With the possibility of further weather damage leading to more disruption, the Secretary for Education has directed that schools, kura, early learning services and Tertiary Organisations in the Auckland region (Wellsford to Pukekohe) to close for physical onsite attendance and instruction until Friday, opening after Waitangi weekend.

        Seems prudent in the circumstances. Mayor Brown suggested a one-day closure:

        "The mayor's suggestion was that schools should close for one day, the ministry seems to have made a unilateral decision to close for one week. There doesn't seem to be much logic for it."

        No doubt some consistency will emerge – it's a fluid situation.

        Laundry Drying Time
        Wet all day
        Next good day: 5+ days away

        • Belladonna

          Also angry about it from the social infrastructure perspective.

          It's almost always Mum who has to tell her boss that she can't work because she has to mind the kids at short notice.
          [Yes, I know there are *some* Dads who do this – but it's overwhelmingly Mums]

          And, this has inevitable consequences on promotion and salary prospects.

          If you want to know why women have life-time earnings deficits – this kind of unpaid expectation is one of the big reasons.

          Out of our team of about 100 – the management team touched base with everyone on Friday night – and updated on Saturday – to check in that everyone was OK and see what support was needed. We had 4 people with significant flood damage (including the business owner), and about another 6 with minor issues (wet garage, etc.). So less than 5% seriously impacted, and 10% with some issues.
          This evening, I've already had 3 out of the 10 people in my immediate team, tell me they need to take emergency leave to mind kids for the rest of this week (2 mums, 1 grandma). [Notably. None of the men have requested this.] So that's over 30% impacted, directly.

          Some will be taking leave without pay – since they've already used their current leave allocation over Christmas. [Actually, we'll almost certainly let them advance leave – but that's a zero sum game – there's never enough leave allowance for parents with school kids – so they either come up short now, or in the next school holidays]

          So – the biggest impact on our staff and business isn't the flood – it's closing schools.

          • Drowsy M. Kram

            So – the biggest impact on our staff and business isn't the flood – it's closing schools.

            NEMA, the MoE, Mayor Brown et al. likely consider this impact regrettable. I hope public inconvenience/anger never looms large in their decision making during a state of emergency. Imho we can expect more of this, for all the good it will do.

            [image resized – Incognito]

            • Belladonna

              Rather sad you feel so comfortable ignoring the social impact on women/mothers.

              You might want to look in the mirror for your grumpy old man double.

              • Drowsy M. Kram

                Rather sad you feel so comfortable ignoring the social impact on women/mothers.

                Is that what I did, Belladonna? Fwiw, I have little respect for anyone who casually twists words – imho you just can’t trust such people.

                I rather thought that I was expressing my hope that public inconvenience and anger would not unduly influence NEMA's and the MoE's decisions during a state of emergency.

                I daresay that Iona Holsted didn't issue her directive lightly, and regrets any inconvenience.

                • 95% of my comment was about the social impact on women/mothers.

                  You completely ignored all of it – to seize on the one (final) line you could twist to your purpose.

                  Hence the comment:

                  [Or, perhaps, you could quote the thoughtful response that you made to the issue I was raising…. /sarc/]

                  I know you're proud of your left-wing bias – and are pre-programmed to react negatively to any comment I make, since I don't share your world-view.

                  Going to leave this here.

                  Better things to do with my life.

                  • Drowsy M. Kram

                    95% of my comment was about the social impact on women/mothers.

                    You completely ignored all of it…

                    Incorrect – I read your entire comment. The negative impacts of decisions taken during this (or any) state of emergency are regrettable.

                    Imho, such emergencies will become increasingly common, perhaps necessitating decisions with (even) greater negative impacts.

                    I know you're proud of your left-wing bias –

                    Don't know about "proud" – I'm certainly comfortable with lefty views.

                    and are pre-programmed to react negatively to any comment I make…

                    Did you really expect me to react positively to this comment of yours?

                    Rather sad you feel so comfortable ignoring the social impact on women/mothers.

                    No 'pre-programming' required – honest.

                    Going to leave this here. yes

                    Better things to do with my life.

                    Clearly – you’ve made 14 comments on TS this evening.

              • Drowsy M. Kram

                You might want to look in the mirror for your grumpy old man double.

                Absolutely reject your suggestion that I'm grumpy – I'm simply observing.

                Auckland floods: Wayne Brown’s text to tennis mates – can’t play because have ‘to deal with media drongos over the flooding
                [31 January 2023]
                The “drongos” message comes from a WhatsApp messenger group Brown joined last month for organising games at the West End Lawn Tennis Club in Westmere. The tennis group – called The Grumpy Old Men – aims to develop groups of four to play doubles games on Fridays and Sundays.

                Oh dear.

                I get it – ‘the left' does it too. And who wouldn't feel grumpy, angry even, when inconvenienced by responses to a state of emergency. Best of luck.

      • joe90 15.1.3

        Emergency management requested the closures to minimise traffic while workers do their best to safely clean up and reinstate services. Under normal circumstances most of that work would require complex traffic management plans/road closures and be carried out overnight and during weekends.

        The difficulties involved are obviously beyond the idiot.

        • Belladonna

          I seriously doubt that Emergency management requested that every school in Auckland close down. I can certainly believe that they may have requested closure in some areas, where the roading network has been significantly damaged (Riverhead bridge, etc.).
          Perhaps you can link to this request?

          I've driven through some of the very badly affected-by-flooding areas on the North Shore today (SH1, Wairau Rd, etc.); and while the shops and businesses and homes are still being cleaned and dried out – the roading network, itself is unaffected. There are a few local trees still down across roads due to slips (roads into reserves or yacht moorings – which (quite rightly) aren't being prioritized for clearance)

          There is no good (roading) reason why local schools couldn’t be open.

          And, as pointed out above, city-based parents and kids will be hitting the malls and entertainment precincts – so, this decision is likely to create more traffic, rather than less.

      • Incognito 15.1.4

        Seymour does what he does best: politicking. And this is a fine example of disaster politicking.

        Seymour knows that not all schools would have opened tomorrow. For example, Avondale College:

        Thurs 2 February Year 9s and Year 13s start today

        Friday 3 February All year levels at school


        In other words, for most of those students it means they’d miss only one day at school at which not much learning would have taken place anyway. Seymour knows this but he prefers to call it “a week” which creates the wrong impression, by design, of course.

        Any loss of school days could (and will?) be made up later in the term(s) or at the end of the year. Seymour knows this too.

    • Muttonbird 15.2

      Tim Conner is defying the MOE and reckons his boys are going to school regardless. My own kids' schools will close but one principal did say in the email the government announcement was via media.

      I will be out and about on Khyber Pass early tomorrow so shall report back if Auckland Grammar is rebelling0!

      • Muttonbird 15.2.1

        Don't get me wrong, I am upset by the decision but have filed it under, "shit over the last three years I don't want to think about".

        I'm upset because it has been a rubbish summer. Wet, difficult, disrupted recuperation. Clients being asshole, etc.

        Was really looking forward to parking it and moving on with the resumption of school. They won't even let me do that. 🙁

        • Patricia Bremner

          "They"? As a past educator, it seems sensible to me. It is a disaster and needs clear instructions and decisions.

          Checks on… water quality testing/toilets functions/electricity safely on/ roads and paths safe/staffing and pupil issues met/ food available?/ dry clothing?…materials? to name just a few issues.

          The staff and Principal are in "loco parentis'. Responsible from the child's gate 'till safely home after school. The Ministry has deemed the over all risks too great.

          What is happening that people quizz every decision as if it is taken to annoy them personally?

          • Muttonbird....

            "They" is everyone who is not me!

            I just described how I feel as a parent after this holiday period. It seems 2023 has got off to a start which 2022, 20221, and 2020 would be envious of.

          • woodart

            no patricia, you should realize that decision does annoy the easily annoyed. every decision is targeted at them, and them alone, to allow their outrage alarm to go off .

      • Belladonna 15.2.2

        Looks as though Conner said that, since the official communication from the MoE, said that schools could open, but had to provide distance learning – they would be opening, unless specifically directed not to.

        Don't know why the MoE waited until after 5 on the day before schools were scheduled to open – to send out their notice … seems a bit… dilatory).


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