Open mike 30/12/2023

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, December 30th, 2023 - 46 comments
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46 comments on “Open mike 30/12/2023 ”

  1. Ad 1

    When an ex-apartheid hyper-repressive state points the finger bone and says 'you are committing genocide', the world will take notice particularly at the UN's International Court of Justice.

    South Africa launched a case last Friday alleging “acts and omissions by Israel” in Gaza “are genocidal in character,” asking the court to order Israel to stop its military operations in Gaza as the death toll reportedly exceeds 20,000.

  2. Joe90 2

    Just when you think the tea or window thing is a little hackneyed.

    A pro-Putin politician has been found dead after allegedly falling from a third-floor window in Russia.

  3. Joe90 3

    If murderous thugs are your thing, Netanyahu and Hamas are the perfect couple. They need each other to exist.

    Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Saturday night that he was “proud” he prevented the establishment of a Palestinian state and took credit for “putting the brakes” on the Oslo peace process, during a press conference at the Defense Ministry headquarters in Tel Aviv.


    Netanyahu described the Oslo Accords as “a fateful mistake” and said the results of the “little Palestinian state in Gaza” brought about by the Israeli withdrawal from Gaza in 2005 demonstrated the danger of allowing Palestinian sovereignty in the West Bank.

  4. Will the RW media throw a tanty and blame the new gummint for the latest smash and grab raid?

    Daylight robbery: West Auckland Michael Hill jewellers is latest smash and grab target – NZ Herald

    • AB 4.1

      No, they won't. It's featured in the Herald because it can still be blamed on the previous government – provided the reader is sufficiently gullible and reactionary. Give it a year and the Herald will scarcely mention such incidents – Mark Mitchell's inevitable failure will be smothered in silence.

    • Belladonna 4.2

      I'm much more concerned about this one – burglary turned violent, featuring very young teenagers.

      I expect that the people-who-elected-the-government on an anti-crime platform, will be watching closely to see what (if anything) happens differently.

      • bwaghorn 4.2.1

        , will be watching closely to see what (if anything) happens differently.

        Theyre in for a disappointment then,

        Until we find away to bring back a sense community ,culture, inclusiveness and social responsibility and move away from the relentless pursuit of the individual no government is gonna fix a God damn thing.

        • Belladonna

          Well, disappointment if things don't improve/ aren't handled 'better' – will be good news for the left. The 'we can handle crime' drum was being beaten prominently by the government in the run-up to the election. Pointing out that, actually, they can't – should be jam for the opposition.

          • bwaghorn

            Na the left tend not to role that way, they get in and try actually make a difference, all the while being ankle tapped by the right that's got nothing better to offer than more stick.

        • Patricia Bremner

          One of your pithy gemsyes

  5. Brilliant and heartfelt piece from one of our best, JC

    Who are we?
    Where are we heading?
    And who will we be when we get there?
    My year-end politics column.
    Please read it (🙏🏽), no matter who you voted for, because – where are we heading?

    John Campbell: Are we on the cusp of something new or something old?

    — John Campbell (@JohnJCampbell) December 29, 2023

    • AB 5.1

      I like John. He's a decent guy with a lyrical soul and a good interviewer who sometimes gets lost in his own effusiveness.

      But it's not clear if he realises that all the (so-called) anti-woke rhetoric and English-names-first idiocy is a cynical electoral ploy to gain power. It's a culture war disguise for the real political agenda – which is to entrench and deepen the rigged neoliberal economy and its relentless upwards wealth redistribution at a time when it faces crises that may undermine its legitimacy in the public mind. If the only way to save the neoliberal project was to embrace overt fascism, that would happen in a heartbeat. Alarmingly, the problem is actually worse than John seems to understand.

      • SPC 5.1.1

        I do not think that a democracy can survive home ownership falling to below 50%, without some sort of fascist order regime being built over it. It could survive with home ownership below 50% in the past because increasing home ownership rates was one of the "ambitions" of that "property owning" democracy (based on historic property tests for voting).

        Capital first came to cannibalise the state of its assets for private shareholder profit, then it came for residential property. A corporate shareholding landlord property class and the means of its oppression is popular fascism. In the end neo-liberalism is a return to the few with all the economic power and in search of a means to rule over the many – the Domesday Book (the surveillance state, information is power) and the knights of the Norman feudal order (agents of deep state suppression of any organised dissent – dissemination of information about injustice/inequality, political activism).

        • roblogic

          Agree. Richard Wolff has pointed out many times that the uncontrolled corporate capitalism of today is incompatible with a healthy democracy.

          As Gary's Economics (and Yanis Varoufakis) points out, we are slowly entering a neofeudal era, where there is no middle class, just a fabulously rich 1% class and millions of people in abject desperation orbiting their cities hoping for a few crumbs

    • SPC 5.2

      The problem

      our new Prime Minister keeps telling us he’s “ambitious for New Zealand.”

      “Hugely ambitious.”

      Take a look at the PM’s media release announcing the coalition government’s 100-day plan.

      It lists, in fourteen bullet points (Nicole McKee insisted on those), “hugely ambitious… actions”. But ten of the fourteen, TEN OF THE FOURTEEN, contain the words, repeal, ban, remove, stop or disestablish.

      Then the central truth of the problem

      “It's my absolute belief that New Zealand can do better, and when it does, New Zealanders will do better, too.”

      The lack of vision leads to bland corporate speak about New Zealand (Inc) as a company that can ultimately return better dividends to its shareholders.

      It's reducing government of a nation state and the organisation within its society to the trickle down mantra.

      This began when economics became captured by neo-liberalism (and its array of think tanks for the hired guns of a wealthy elite) and the concept of political economy and democratic society within economics began to whither. The brutal simplicity of meal ticket education path – BCA/MBA – paid service for the few or those on the BA/MPP path left with service to the cause of those who have no economic or political power in what was left of the shrivelled state (and their declining place within it as they were weeded out and replaced with those of the corporate world).

    • Patricia Bremner 5.3

      I feel John's final plea will fall on Luxon's "deaf" ear and his "blind" eye.

  6. SPC 6

    Lest we forget, the former PM ….

    He said that drive is one of the things that also helped him get to the ninth floor of the Beehive, and believes that anyone can achieve the same if they have that motivation regardless of that background.

    While he was PM did investment in education increase? Did child poverty numbers decline? Did home ownership levels increase? Did wealth inequality reduce? Did the number of state houses increase, or decline, as population increased and aged?

    It’s one reason why Key is not a fan of the recent IRD report, which showed that while wealthier New Zealanders pay more tax overall, they pay lower tax rates than other earners.

    Key said the analysis was “so pathetic” that he doesn’t see why it was published, and lambasted the idea that all of New Zealand’s problems can be blamed on the rich.

    “I know what my taxes are and I know I was on that list cause I was made to fill it out, and I know there’s a hell of a lot more wealthy people that are not on the list that are a lot wealthier than we are. But I know how much nominal tax I pay and the answer is, a truckload. Mm-hmm. So yeah, when 2 per cent of people are paying a quarter of all personal tax and 25 per cent are paying, or 20 per cent are paying about 70 per cent of it, well, if that’s not enough, what is enough?

    “Last time I looked, we want people with ambition doing things, hiring people. That was a lot of what I tried to do when I was Prime Minister. I tried to build ambition, and have New Zealand proud of the fact that we are the rockstar economy and that we were punching above our weight and that we were gonna win.

    One would hope that people with such limited perspectives were not electable, but we now have one of his ilk, Luxon, as PM.

    • Johnr 6.1

      Key says it was drive that got him to the 9th floor. Pure selfish ambition.

      If we assume that governance is for the betterment of ALL citizens.

      Then only one simple question has to be answered.

      Are we a better place for that governance ??

    • SPC 6.2

      John Key is intelligent enough in the economic realm to know this but it needs to be said.

      So yeah, when 2 per cent of people are paying a quarter of all personal tax and 25 per cent are paying, or 20 per cent are paying about 70 per cent of it, well, if that’s not enough, what is enough?

      This is only because of growing income and wealth inequality between the haves and have nots and that without tax changes (which generate revenue to government) the figures he cites will not change, but become even more extreme (as fewer of generations coming after the boomers own property).

      But he would rather try and obscure the fact that many of the wealthy pay lower tax rates than other earners. He objects to people being informed of the facts of this.

      We are the only nation in the OECD without a CGT (35/36 have one) or estate tax (24/36 have one).

      We have the most friendly to capital and wealth tax regime in the OECD. And do not have income tax rates for the top earners.

      John Key is engaging in class war on the income and wealth poor and so is the Luxon government.

      • Bearded Git 6.2.1

        CGT's are very complicated to implement and the revenue resulting is very unpredictable.

        Of the three possible options. CGT, LT and WT, a CGT is by far the worst option in this regard.

        Btw I’m a qualified accountant…lapsed.

        • SPC

          The bright-line test is easy enough – buy and sell a house not resided in within 2 or 5 or 10 (now back to 2) years and be liable to a tax on the CG.

          It’s not a full CGT of course, which normally includes shares and business property assets (land for farmers).

    • Incognito 6.3

      I don’t believe for one second that Sir John filled out that form all by himself.

      Someone tell Sir John the difference between greed and ambition.

  7. SPC 7

    Hegelian analysis.

    “Backlashes always occur. Indeed when I was at university – a slightly more recent bit of history than the Reformation, even if it seems an eon ago – one of the key political texts was a book by Susan Faludi entitled, quite simply, Backlash, which described the 1980s counter-reaction to the 1970s women’s movement. As Faludi wrote last year, that backlash “has never relented” – but progress can be achieved in spite of it.”

    The Faludi link he referred to in this article.

    “All of these groups subscribed to a fundamental principle enshrined in the mission statement of the Illinois Woman’s Alliance: “The actual status of the poorest and most unfortunate woman in society determines the possible status of every woman.”

  8. bwaghorn 8

    Sir mallard!!!

    Monty pythonesque!!!

    • Robert Guyton 8.1

      Is it a duke? Is it a duck?

      Winning the bike race against Slater is reason enough for a knighthood for Trev the Biff.

    • Sanctuary 8.2

      Well, if a knight can find the holy grail, and a Mallard is a duck, and if by using our biggest set of scales we can show a dame weighs the same as a knightly duck, then clearly all dames are witches, which makes Jacinda a witch! The cookers were right all along!

    • Rosielee+ 8.3

      Just wait til we get Sir Gerry Brownstuff.

  9. Sanctuary 9

    The MSM – all those so-called political pundits, gallery journalists, savvy reporters – uncritically repeated the tax cut rhetoric bullshit from National. Topham Guerin is so cocky about it they are openly bragging about their role in creating a narrative the MSM swallowed hook, line and sinker. The problem for the MSM is if they admit the narrative they fell for was created in a totally unregulated social media disinformation campaign they are also confessing their irrelevance and obsolescence, so they'll pretend it isn't a thing and refuse to discuss it.

  10. Bearded Git 10

    It's just a design problem Joe, you know like leaky buildings. Haha.

  11. SPC 11

    A 21st C remake of a feminist classic. Fixing a society design flaw.

    Not so much a Victorian wife to breed a child to inherit the husbands estate, but a Promise Keeper wife … who would rather die than live that way. So she is assisted to being born again as an adult with a child's mind, so she can learn to become a feminist. All she needs is a partner by her side who she can trust and someone to do the estate gardening, when she is the one with economic empowerment.

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