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Open mike 30/10/2015

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, October 30th, 2015 - 72 comments
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72 comments on “Open mike 30/10/2015”

  1. North 1

    In its terms this Waatea News article doesn’t sufficiently indicate that SERCO runs Christmas Island –

    http://www.waateanews.com/Waatea+News.html?story_id=MTEzNDQ%3D&v=291#.Vi7jsfkk3-k.facebook

    This workpermit.com article expressly confirms that fact –

    http://www.workpermit.com/news/2015-01-22/serco-wins-5-year-australian-immigration-contract

    Stayed at the Taufua Fale at Lalomanu, Upolu, Samoa, couple of years ago. Recall sitting on the beautiful beach there looking out to Nu’utele Island – the site of a leper colony 1916-1918 – http://samoa.southpacific.org/upolu/eastern.html

    As I gloried in the warmth of Lalomanu and lively, embracing Samoan hospitality I would contemplatively muse – “How must life have been for those poor souls ?”

    It is a bitter, bitter irony that our Minister of Corrections Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga is Samoan. How must life be Sam……in the SERCO establishments you continue to licence……thus smartening the investment portfolios of the British upper-middle class……gifting wealth way beyond need ?

    Deploying for a moment the risibly fake ‘Everyman’ diction of The Ponce-Key……”I reckon” if SERCO had been around in Germany and Poland in the 30s and 40s……there would have been some magnificent profit turned.

    Sam……like a boy you do your masters’ bidding and you truck with the corporate beast SERCO, seemingly without shame. You do that in our name. No ! No ! Where is Fa’a Samoa in you Sam ?

    • Morrissey 1.1

      He’s a politician, North. His primary loyalty is to the National Party.

      • North 1.1.1

        Mmmm……a National Party politician…….he and Alfred Ngaro, the fiapalagi bait The Ponce-Key patronisingly disported before Pasifika of South Auckland last election…….that turned out beautifully, didn’t it ?

  2. Morrissey 2

    Britain’s Poppy Fascism
    by Finian Cunningham, 29 October 2015
    http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article43274.htm

    It’s that time of year again – when Britain’s “poppy fascism” dominates public life. Television presenters are perhaps the most conspicuous exponents, whereby the paper facsimile of the little red flower must be donned on all lapels.

    Now weeks ahead of the official commemoration day, more and more Britons, including TV personalties, are pinning the poppy in public.

    It may seem innocuous, but there is a disturbing authoritarianism to the increasing custom. Those who don’t wear the symbol commemorating Britain’s war dead are liable to be castigated and abused for being “traitors”.

    The BBC is a classic example. The publicly owned state broadcaster says that its presenters and reporters have the option of not wearing the red poppy. But in practice such is the peer pressure and jingoistic mood of modern Britain that all BBC staff will have to conform to a personal display of the red floral tribute. Bet on it.

    Some brave television figures refuse to go along with the established “norm”. It was Channel 4 news presenter Jon Snow who coined the phrase “poppy fascism” a few years ago when he was publicly berated by BBC journalists and other media outlets for refusing to don the flower during his nightly broadcasts. It remains to be seen if the Channel 4 news anchor will this year cave to public pressure – a pressure which seems to be growing every year.

    Ever since 1919, Britain and its Commonwealth states, including Australia, Canada and New Zealand hold Remembrance Day on November 11.

    It marks the armistice of the First World War in 1918. The first commemoration was held by Britain’s King George V who wore a red poppy, thus inaugurating a tradition that continues to this day. The delicate flower was commonly seen on the battlefields of Belgium and France and came to symbolise the millions of soldiers killed during the four-year-old war.

    Across Britain, Remembrance Day is marked by sombre ceremonies in towns and cities during which poppy wreathes are laid at war memorials. The biggest event is held at the Cenotaph in London’s Whitehall. Queen Elizabeth, Prime Minister David Cameron and other political leaders will be among the chief dignitaries, along with senior members of Britain’s armed forces.

    So what, you may ask, is objectionable about Britain’s annual Remembrance?

    In its early observance, the event was indeed a momentous mourning for the millions who died in the First World War. It was an occasion to vow “never again” should mankind be plagued with such horror.

    However, the massive demonstration of grieving and repudiation of war has since given way to an obscene glorification of war. The danger of such co-option was there from the beginning when King George V led the first Remembrance Day. For the British monarch – whose cousins included Germany’s Kaiser Wilhelm II and other European aristocrats – personified the basic background to the conflict. It was an imperialist squabble that exploded into a conflagration that consumed up to 18 million ordinary civilians among the warring nations. ….

    Read more….
    http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article43274.htm

    • Ad 2.2

      Personally I find it the most respectful representation of war that I’ve seen.

      And I definitely wear it with pride.

      • Proud poppy wearer 2.2.1

        +1

      • miravox 2.2.2

        “And I definitely wear it with pride”

        On Remembrance Day I’d agree with you – pride or sorrow for the loss of lives spent in war or for futures than never were. But it’s not even November yet and the poppy is everywhere (peer pressure? It’s not meant to be a fashion statement). I feel this devalues the day itself.

        • Anne 2.2.2.1

          Agreed. It’s like that beautiful word “awesome”. Once apon a time it was used in it’s correct sense. Something that filled one with awe. Now it has been debased by it’s gross overuse (young people especially) and it’s lost it’s status.

          The same will happen with the poppy remembrance. For that reason I refuse to wear it on any other day other than the 25th April.

      • Grant 2.2.3

        I’d agree with you if you’d said you wore it in sorrow.

        DULCE ET DECORUM EST

        Bent double, like old beggars under sacks,
        Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge,
        Till on the haunting flares we turned our backs
        And towards our distant rest began to trudge.
        Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots
        But limped on, blood-shod. All went lame; all blind;
        Drunk with fatigue; deaf even to the hoots
        Of gas-shells dropping softly behind.
        Gas! GAS! Quick, boys!—An ecstasy of fumbling
        Fitting the clumsy helmets just in time,
        But someone still was yelling out and stumbling
        And flound’ring like a man in fire or lime.—
        Dim, through the misty panes and thick green light,
        As under a green sea, I saw him drowning.
        In all my dreams before my helpless sight
        He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning.
        If in some smothering dreams you too could pace
        Behind the wagon that we flung him in,
        And watch the white eyes writhing in his face,
        His hanging face, like a devil’s sick of sin,
        If you could hear, at every jolt, the blood
        Come gargling from the froth-corrupted lungs,
        Bitter as the cud
        Of vile, incurable sores on innocent tongues,—
        My friend, you would not tell with such high zest
        To children ardent for some desperate glory,
        The old Lie: Dulce et decorum est
        Pro patria mori.

      • tracey 2.2.4

        Which war did you both (Ad and Poppy with pride) serve in, if you don’t mind me asking.

    • Proud poppy wearer 2.3

      Poppy fascism 🙄 what drivel

      • Morrissey 2.3.1

        Poppy fascism what drivel

        ??

        Could you back up your rather emotional statement with an argument please?

        • Proud poopy wearer 2.3.1.1

          The article you link to jumps from reasoned debate to an utter ugly and ill founded rant to fit the event to the author’s very public and well known counter-positions on monarchy, armed forces and UK government.

          As a retired serviceman the ceremonies are a tiny moment of peace and stillness to reflect as a nation upon the futility of war and the loss of friends and comrades through the years. It remembers, for example, the fight against Nazi Fascism and in all the other conflicts in which we are caught up – mostly as a result of the failure of Politicians and Diplomats.

          Those who shout loudest against events such as this have largely never worn uniform and put their lives in the hands of others. They do not recognise the value of service, they don’t see value at all, only cost. That is why, for example, the Monarchy that gives so many millions of people so much pleasure and generates so much for our nation, is the easy target for small minded and jealous writers whose own lives are monotonously dull and grey. For those of us who wore uniform, and who continue to do so, we do so for a variety of reasons – and not all are nationalistic or idealism – but ultimately because we are prepared to do so detractors are able to contort their faces into anger and shout their spittle laced messages from the safety of their own lives. The Poppy is a dignified sign of respect and thanks. If you don’t wear it that is up to you – freedom to exercise such rights is after all part of what we fought so hard for (unlike those compelled to wear a yellow star for example) – and frankly if you are so blinded by ugly rhetoric and cannot see the humanity beneath the November ceremonies you should not and neither are you decent enough person to be a Poppy wearer. Keep shouting – few are listening but many gave their lives that you could

    • vto 2.4

      It is about the people who died, nothing else.

      Certainly not about nationalism, not about the ugly military and their armies, not about government, not about the frikkin’ crown, not about politicians. Those things are all responsible for war and should be arsed out of the commemorations. Fuck them.

      Unfortunately today, it has morphed into nationalism, militarism, government, crown and politicians.

      It is fucked in the head and leading straight back to more war and death.

    • Grant 2.5

      I knew a simple soldier boy
      Who grinned at life in empty joy,
      Slept soundly through the lonesome dark,
      And whistled early with the lark.

      In winter trenches, cowed and glum,
      With crumps and lice and lack of rum,
      He put a bullet through his brain.
      No one spoke of him again.

      You smug-faced crowds with kindling eye
      Who cheer when soldier lads march by,
      Sneak home and pray you’ll never know
      The hell where youth and laughter go.

  3. RedBaronCV 3

    Wellington employers Chamber of commerce wants to take action against the city council for issues around the living wage.
    On the board -detail on website -are
    Daniel Fielding – Minter Ellison Rudd Watts
    Richard Stone – JacksonStone & Partners
    Pierre Woolridge – Optimum Websites Ltd
    Charles Finny – Saunders Unsworth
    Zane Fulljames – NZ Bus.
    Linda Sissons – Wellington Institute of Technology (WelTec)
    Peter Cullen – Cullen Law, President
    Cas Carter – Massey University, Vice-President
    Olivier Lacoua – CQ Hotels
    Ian Cassels – The Wellington Company
    Brent Callaghan – Westpac
    John Dow – Agenda Limited

    Not exactly your small local business’s are they – wonder if the membership looks the same.
    You’d have though that on behalf on their members they would be more likely to support an increase in lower level pay and a hold on the upper level pay.
    After all that would mean more people outside their door with money to spend. Looking at the CV’s I suspect a number of them may have council contracts – is there a conflict of interets? Go on journo’s do your stuff – ask the questions.

    • Sanctuary 3.1

      The hysteria around this move by the WCC is incredible. What is it about people not electing the “right” local government that so gets under the skin of the neo-libs? Farrar is practically demanding a judicial coup against the democratically elected councillors complete with blood curdling threats of hefty fines – and all over less than $3,000,000 a year in extra wages?

      It is a bizarrely over the top authoritarian response from an increasingly intolerant and Fascistic right wing that seems to think anyone who doesn’t agree with them has no right to govern.

    • vto 3.2

      Lovely people aren’t they.

      Pushing to pay people less than it costs to live.

      Fucking bludgers

      • Roflcopter 3.2.1

        Does that include the Councillors who voted for the living wage, but refuse to pay their own business staff it? e.g. Mark Peck

        • vto 3.2.1.1

          everyone

        • tracey 3.2.1.2

          yes.

          So you are for it now that we have cleared that up?

          Westpac

          “Cash earnings in the New Zealand business rose to $441 million in the six months ended March 31, from $432 million a year earlier, the Sydney-based bank said in a statement. Net interest income rose 6 per cent to $832 million as the local lender grew its mortgage loan book 5 per cent to $40.7 billion and business lending expanded 5 per cent to $24 billion. Impairment charges on bad debts rose to $31 million from $4 million a year earlier, when the bank benefitted from provision recoveries.

          “We achieved good growth in New Zealand, supported by changes to our distribution network and the increased use of digital channels,” group chief executive Brian Hartzer said.” May 2015

          “…The Australian parent reported a small dip in first-half profit to A$3.61 billion, from A$3.62 billion a year earlier, with cash earnings flat at A$3.77 billion.

    • Tautoko Mangō Mata 3.3

      Can I suggest that the Wellington Chamber of Commerce should be asked to come up with a weekly household budget for a person living on the minimum wage to support their argument with the Wellington Council.

    • Wainwright 3.4

      That line-up shows the chamber of commerce is just another rightwing front like the Taxpayer Union. Using the credibility of local business owners to push their agenda.

    • Rosie 3.5

      Despite the Chamber of Commerces’ hysterical (good word Sanctuary) reaction to the vote to retain the living wage for council staff and get council contractors on board with the living wage too, the main contractor in question, Recon, who provide noise control services to the WCC and whose staff would benefit from moving to the living wage haven’t said a word about it as yet. (Maybe they have and I missed it – or is Recon a member of the Chamber of Commerce and they want to stay under the radar?)

      It is absurd that their ideological viewpoint would prevent them from putting $$$ into potential customers hands to spend at their stores (eg John MIlford used to be CE of Kirkaldie and Stains, and look where that store has ended up after 150 years of trading – down the tubes, no customers!)

      Absurd too that Nicola Young, right wing councillor for Lambton Ward, in her opposition to introducing the living wage to council staff last year, said those on minimum wage get benefits from the government to top up their existence. I thought those nats thought people who receive benefits are bludgers, draining their precious tax payer $$$?

      By opposing the living wage in their blind mean spirited way, these guys are in fact opposing increased trade, let alone the reduction of financial stress in people’s lives, that which of course they couldn’t care about.

      • gsays 3.5.1

        hi rosie,
        re. living wage being paid: there is a great ted talk that covers this amongst other things.
        put “plutocrats and the pitchforks are coming” into the search.

        essentially he helps to define capitalism and deals with inequality, arguing that the middle class is where jobs and growth are generated.

        while he is at it he smashes a few of those neo-liberal myths, eg.tricledown, raising minimum wages costs jobs etc.

        thoroughly reccommended 20mins.

        • Rosie 3.5.1.1

          Thanks gsays. I’ve heard of Ted Talks but never listened to one. Do I just google ted talk and who is the speaker I look for? Ta.

          The other thing that just occurred to me is that is would make sense for a banker, ie, Brent Callaghan from Westpac of the board of the Chamber of Commerce, to oppose a living wage. If people could actually afford to live they would use their credit cards less and less for essential and non essential items.

          People like Brent, I would assume, would want workers to remain on low wages and be dependent on the bank for credit. The business of debt is big business for them. It’s pure profit.

          Imagine if wages in general went up. You’d get more side orders at your cafe, in addition to orders for mains, and more covers. People, once their debt is under control could do nice things like go out and enjoy themselves. Your business would increase, then you can all have wage increase too!!!

          Hey, go the whole hog, abolish GST and theres more money for everyone!!!

          We’d get our financial independence back!!!

          • Draco T Bastard 3.5.1.1.1

            The speaker is billionaire Nick Hanauer and he makes some excellent points. Video here. He’s got an article up here as well covering the same ground.

            People like Brent, I would assume, would want workers to remain on low wages and be dependent on the bank for credit. The business of debt is big business for them. It’s pure profit.

            That is pretty much exactly how our financial system works.

            The poor are in debt because they can’t afford to live and the interest that they pay goes to the rich and then stays there because our banks create money to loan out rather than loaning out money that they have on deposit.

            Imagine if wages in general went up. You’d get more side orders at your cafe, in addition to orders for mains, and more covers. People, once their debt is under control could do nice things like go out and enjoy themselves.

            And they become nicer to everyone else as well as competition between people decreases. This is another reason why our government should be bringing back full employment as a policy setting.

            • Rosie 3.5.1.1.1.1

              Thanks Draco. I’ve got 5 minutes into the Nick Hanauer talk, before I have to dash off and do things, and he’s talking alot of sense.

              Those boofheads at the Chamber of Commerce need to listen to what he says about inequality being bad for business, regardless of your moral stance – sort of what I was getting to above, in a less articulate way.

              In Robert Reich’s “Inequality for all” that same theme is covered: (Trailer)

              I’ve seen you post that “A flaw in the monetary system” video before and will give it a look later. And re the poor being in debt, I think it’s increasingly more the middle classes too. Everything points to out current system holding us back financially which affects us personally and socially. I believe our society is under a great strain but here in Nu Zuland I think those pitchforks are going to stay safely tucked away in their garden sheds for quite some time.

              PS: Stephanie has a good post on her blog Boots Theory about the living wage Vs the chamber of Commerce.

          • gsays 3.5.1.1.2

            ‘Imagine if wages in general went up. You’d get more side orders at your cafe, in addition to orders for mains, and more covers.’

            that is one of points nick hanauer (thanks draco) makes;
            its a good thing if you pay your staff enough so they can afford to eat at your place.

      • tracey 3.5.2

        Fighting to keep paying people what is regarded as insufficient to lead a decent life…

    • tracey 3.6

      Oh the injustice, Council are SUCH bastards, paying a living wage to security guards. Westpac make billions a year in profit but pay their security guards 14.70 (gross) per hour to guard the loot

      • RedBaronCV 3.6.1

        By evening this article had dropped way down stuffs online presence to near invisibilty-
        maybe not such a good idea by the Chamber?

  4. Treetop 4

    Will there be a spin off for Fonterra in baby formula sales due to China increasing the population?

    In 1979 China introduced the one child policy, 400 million less births have occurred due to the policy. Not sure when but there has been a relaxation in some provinces to allow a second child due to an aging population. Knowing how many extra children have been born in the provinces with a second child would interest me as it would give an estimation of how many people may elect to have a second child.

    In rural areas often the parents go into the cities to work and leave their children in the care of grandparents.

    Increasing the birth rate is part of China’s vision for the next five years. I can now see why establishing the production of milk solids in NZ is important for China.

    At some point the population in China will reach 2 billion, it is currently 1.4 billion.

    During the year of the dragon the birth rate increases and during the year of the sheep it decreases. Planning maternity services for an extra child is just the start, next is housing, child care, education, health, jobs etc.

    • Treetop 4.1

      There was a bit more on TV 3 news at 6 pm about the one child policy. A woman dared to have a second child, the child was deemed to not exist as there was no entitlement to health care, education or travel documents. I was left thinking how forward thinking this mother was.

      I would like to see all children who were born under the one child policy, treated the same as a first born.

      A neighbour mentioned to me that many children overseas have elderly parents in China. I also think that there could be a shortage of females.

  5. Tautoko Mangō Mata 5

    “Court Orders USTR To Justify Industry Advisor Confidentiality In TPP”
    The Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) next week is expected to provide justification for withholding from a Freedom of Information Act request the communications with its industry advisors as confidential commercial or financial information. The case involves communications in the lead-up to completion of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement, and could set a precedent for exemptions of communications with lobbyists.
    http://www.ip-watch.org/2015/10/29/ustr-called-on-to-justify-industry-advisor-confidentiality-in-tpp/

    Good and about time! In addition there needs to be a political donations disclosure requirement from lobbyists.

  6. ianmac 7

    Wonder who wrote this Editorial? Interesting to see the connection between Slater and Hager.

    “Blogger Cameron Slater and author Nicky Hager have much in common, even beyond the emails one wrote and the other obtained, possibly illegally, now the Supreme Court has ruled computer files are property.

    Both claim to be journalists, and both have found their work subject to the scrutiny of the High Court……….
    …..The Supreme Court’s ruling suggests receiving illegally obtained email may be a crime.

    On this basis, Hager’s challenge to the police search of his house may be harder to sustain. But since his book served a public interest, free speech should prevail.”
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11537132

    • savenz 7.1

      Although data might be property is is clearly pretty different from physical property in the sense that the person still has the data even if it is copied. Also someone who wipes out data from the original should be treated differently than someone who just copies data.

      Also it should take into account where the data came from, is it Facebook? (already face book and many other sites keep copies on their servers even if they are deleted).

      In the Hager case, nobody can prove where it came from anyway. There is no proof it was stolen apart from what contempt of court Slater has said. Slater could have printed it out and lost it at the park or accidentally sent it to the wrong person – or what ever. Plenty of SIS and ACC scandals about this.

      The rumours are that Slater records everything like his conversations with the prime minister for example. He is not going to admit he ‘lost or accidentally’ sent the data off to the wrong person rather say it was not his fault and it was stolen.

      So I don’t think some sort of receipt of ‘stolen goods’ is applicable in the Hager case as a defence at all. So many holes in it.

      I just don’t think the police can prove anything on that one. In fact the police have always said Hager is NOT a suspect for criminal activity in the media.

      And even if the data was copied from Slater then the ‘for the public good’ will apply.

      • tracey 7.1.1

        That Slater is th only person to get a public apology from our PM suggest to me that he does indeed KEEP. EVERYTHING.

  7. Tory 8

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/288342/dotcom's-bid-to-stop-hearing-rejected
    Good to see common sense has prevailed and finally a decision will be made.

  8. r0b 9

    Please come and join us on the Q&A with Alastair Thompson post…

    • weka 9.1

      just had my comment not appear, presumably into moderation. Is that the random bug?

      edit, nevermind, it’s there now 🙂

  9. Ffloyd 10

    Audrey young very wise not to open her opinion piece to comments. Lovely photo of esteemed pm with his stubby in his hand.

  10. Tautoko Mangō Mata 11

    TPP- the latest news and ongoing saga.
    TPP Text Needs Further Work After Japan; Release Not Expected For Weeks
    Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) officials will not be able to finalize the text of the agreement by Oct. 30, when a drafting and legal scrub session is slated to wrap up in Tokyo, meaning the release of the final text is still several weeks away, according to informed sources.
    http://insidetrade.com/

  11. veutoviper 12

    A further David Fisher article on the Hager/Westpac information release is on the Herald’s website today, which is a good round-up of the overall situation re banks and others providing information to NZ Police. It is somewhat hidden on the site, and I had missed it earlier and only heard about it through another blog site.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11537431

    • tracey 12.1

      a cynic would suggest they didnt really want the spotlight on this… untilt hey discovered i tmight affect their bottom line

    • tracey 12.2

      ” The simple act of transparency is likely to reduce the practice. That was TradeMe’s experience with its Transparency Report.”

      Interestingly, once a company publishes the number of requests it receives (but no identifying names), Fisher suggests it reduces the number of attempts the police make….

  12. Draco T Bastard 13

    And more information coming to light that it was foreign investors pushing our housing bubble:

    Overseas investors are deserting Auckland’s property market as the Government crack down on foreign buyers works, but experts say asking prices now remain too high for the remaining local buyers.

    There Idiot/Savant draws and almost correct conclusion:

    But the fact that it has had such a noticeable effect tells us something about the sort of money we’ve been playing haven too, and how a deregulated market enables foreign crime and corruption.

    A deregulated will also enable our own crime and corruption which is why the psychopaths like it so much.

    • savenz 13.1

      Love the way the politicians denied it was foreign investors and some money laundering issue for so long in Auckland.

      Now there are some basic ways to curb foreign investment in place to buy a property and people are going to be taxed if it is resold before 2 years – we don’t have the run away prices.

      If they had bothered to do it 4 years ago, there wouldn’t be the mess!

  13. AsleepWhileWalking 14

    In creepy news, researchers discover how to use Wifi to see what’s happening inside your house.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-3292246/Forget-X-rays-walls-using-WI-FI-Device-captures-silhouettes-identify-people-stood-CONCRETE.html

    • Draco T Bastard 14.1

      Take it you haven’t watched the first series of Continuum then?

      Admittedly, the idea there was to map the patterns of reflections of existing wifi and cellphone towers.

      And it’s not as if they’ve discovered anything – RADAR has been around awhile. It’s just now that they’ve developed the technological capability needed to do it.

  14. Morrissey 15

    So, Lord Lloyd-Webber, what would Jesus do about tax credits cuts?
    If there’s one thing he couldn’t stand, it was the poor whining on about being hungry.

    by MARK STEEL, The Independent, 29 October 2015

    George Osborne should be aware of his achievement, because he must be one of the first people to be warned he’s being too mean to the poor by a body made up of the aristocracy, people dressed in ermine and bishops.

    This proves his leadership potential, similar to a burglar being so determined he’s told by his colleagues: “Hang on, George, leave them the Sugar Puffs. We can’t take everything off the poor sods.” But instead of taking credit, he’s humble enough to explain the main issue of this uneasiness about cutting the income of the poorest people, which is that it creates a “constitutional crisis”.

    That’s the real pain that will be felt by the families who lose £1,300 a year. When children ask: “Why have we got to go without breakfast from now on, Mummy?” they’ll be told: “Because if we’re allowed to keep getting tax credits it would disturb an unspecified constitutional legislative protocol that may or may not have been established in 1910. Do you want to ruin that just for a boiled egg? Now remember, if you faint at school, chew on a finger.”

    Some of us might wonder how you can spoil a constitution when there isn’t a constitution. He might as well say: “The House of Lords has drawn over the masterpiece I painted, and murdered my stegosaurus.” But the most important thing is he’s explained thoroughly that the cuts won’t make people poorer at all, although they will save £4.4bn.

    To be fair, this is genius and if we all did it we would be much better off. To start with, we could call the electricity company and say: “I have to make essential savings, so from now on, I’ll only be paying half my bill. But don’t listen to anyone who suggests this will make you worse off, they’re all extremists.” Then you can get a trolley full of shopping from Sainsbury’s and insist you’re only giving them £2 as you have to make essential savings, but it’s fine because they’re not getting any less than if you gave them £70.

    Because, as Osborne says about tax credits: “It’s ridiculous that we give with one hand and take it away with the other.” So it’s much more efficient if we dispense with the “giving” bit of that process – which, after all, is the expensive bit – and stick to the taking away, which makes everything much more manageable.

    In any case, as the Government repeats about every issue, we all benefit from these savings because they create a strong economy which makes us all better off. So if you’re receiving tax credits, the most sensible thing to do is accept these cuts, then demand they take more off you, forcing you to place your floorboards on eBay and put a great aunt on the game, then you’ll be living the dream.

    This is why so many lords and ladies selflessly gave up their time to vote with the Government. Lord Lloyd-Webber, for example, hasn’t bothered voting for two years, because nothing in the past two years has really mattered. But this week he flew in from New York and cast his vote, because cutting tax credits to the poorest people in work is the one issue where he had to make a stand. And he’s so dedicated I don’t suppose he even checked to see whether he qualifies for tax credits himself, because for him it’s all about the principle. …..

    Read more…
    http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/so-lord-lloyd-webber-what-would-jesus-do-about-tax-credits-cuts-a6713916.html

  15. Morrissey 16

    Mark Reason: New Zealand “deserved” to have that sixteenth man in 2011
    The Panel, Radio NZ National, Friday 30 October 2015, 4:50 p.m.

    Horrible, braindead, unsporting rhetoric from Reason and Farrar. All their faux-patriotic, one-eyed bullshit fails to convince Gayford or Mulligan, however….

    MARK REASON: [speaking slowly and carefully to show how serious he is] The appointment of the referee is very important. Think back to 2011: we all thanked the Lord that Craig Joubert didn’t penalize New Zealand once in that last twenty minutes. We DESERVED to have a hometown referee for our home final! ….

    DAVID FARRAR: I don’t think anybody will care if the Australians are complaining after the match, AS LONG AS WE WIN! Ha ha ha ha!

    CLARK GAYFORD: [dubious] Hmmmmmmm.

    JESSE MULLIGAN: [deeply uncomfortable] Heh heh heh heh….

    • b waghorn 16.1

      I will admit I never knew there was/is any dessent over the last final due to the fact that I don’t watch much sport “news” ,sport to me is entertainment pure and simple and as a ex rugby player that’s my chosen entertainment.
      I’d put farrars comment down to a bit of pre game sledging .
      What do you get if you take the AB’s out of wallabies??

      Wallies!!:-)

      What do you make of the 95 final??

    • Reddelusion 16.2

      It’s only a game of footy Morrissey a bit of light hearted banter is getting your knickers in a twist, chill as I have counselled you before, build a bridge re the 2011 rwc final, the result ain’t going to change

      • Morrissey 16.2.1

        It’s only a game of footy [sic] Morrissey a bit of light hearted banter is getting your knickers in a twist,

        First point: adults say “football”. Please don’t use puerile language.

        Second point: I don’t see anything lighthearted about systematic cheating, a referee who colludes in that cheating, and commentators like Mark Reason who claim that “we” deserved to have a “hometown referee” for that farcical match.

        the result ain’t going to change

        Lance Armstrong still has those Tour de France titles to his name. But perception of the worth and validity of his victories has changed. It wasn’t immediately apparent that he’d cheated; it was and is immediately apparent that the All Blacks did in 2011. Our pyrhhic victory in 2011 was immediately condemned by the French players, and in France generally. That this country has maintained a Soviet-level official silence over the scandal doesn’t mean people don’t actually know what happened—as Reason’s words so clearly demonstrate.

  16. Morrissey 17

    I’d put farrars comment down to a bit of pre game sledging.

    Fair comment.

    What do you get if you take the AB’s out of wallabies?? Wallies!!:-)

    http://static.commentcamarche.net/es.ccm.net/pictures/Ud6krzOUaQiVrbx4IWkuzUrMD8vWr4qbG1wMtmWKQ94r7Doi6fybXXnACJoLFtKR-lol.png

    What do you make of the 95 final??

    Epic match. I presume you are hinting at Laurie Mains’s muttering about “Suzy”. I wouldn’t trust Mains as far as I could kick him.

    I suggest you take a look some time at the 1999 final, which was in many ways a grim foreshadowing of the 2011 final. The commentators for Television New Zealand’s live coverage—Keith Quinn, John McBeth and Wayne Graham—were all clearly disturbed by the performance of another South African referee, Andre Watson.

    I’ll post more on that débâcle some time in the future.

    • b waghorn 17.1

      You’re very willing to condemn kiwis yet you seem to not think it possible that the fledgling rainbow nation wouldn’t see winning the world cup by any means as plausible. Why so down on nz?

      • Morrissey 17.1.1

        You’re very willing to condemn kiwis

        I don’t condemn “Kiwis”. Most of my analysis concerns the performance or non-performance of South African referees in 1999 and 2011. I’ve acknowledged that while the All Blacks, led by McCaw, cheated flagrantly in 2011, so would have any team that was granted such carte blanche immunity by a “referee”. Read my posts again.

        yet you seem to not think it possible that the fledgling rainbow nation wouldn’t see winning the world cup by any means as plausible.

        Maybe it happened. I don’t trust South Africa any more than any other country. But there’s never been anything more than allegations about “Suzy”. I wouldn’t trust anything Mains said or says on that matter or any other.

        Why so down on nz?

        Once again: look at my posts carefully. My criticisms are mainly of the referees, both of them South African. The beneficiaries of Andre “The Warbler” Watson’s extraordinary 1999 RWC final performance—a chilling preview in many ways of what happened 16 years later—were not the All Blacks but the Wallabies.

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  • Lifting our game against COVID-19
    We need to be lifting our game against COVID-19. You and I need to help those working to prevent the spread of COVID-19 while they’re trying to lift the testing and treatment efforts. We don’t want to be playing this game running backwards. Best to play it solidly forward, from ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    1 week ago
  • The maths and ethics of minimising COVID-19 deaths in NZ
    Prof Tony Blakely, Prof Michael Baker, and Prof Nick Wilson The NZ Government must do more to clearly articulate its COVID-19 strategy: eradication or ‘flattening the curve’ mitigation. But to do so means understanding the maths and ethics of both these strategies. In this blog, we adapt our work for ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
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  • All aboard the Covid Train
    A few days ago I was starting to write something about the pandemic, which now seems unconscionable. It took the form of a letter to an agony aunt:“Dear Deidre, I have an ugly confession. I am quite excited by Covid-19.”This is how the piece went:“I’m not a psychopath, honest. Although the ...
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  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #12
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  • Butchers now allowed to process pork
    Changes have been made to allow butchers to process pork, only for supply to supermarkets or other processors or retailers that are open, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has announced. “We carefully weighed the risk of allowing butchers to open their shops for retail customers, but the risk of spreading COVID-19 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 hours ago
  • Essential workers leave scheme established
    Essential workers who take leave from work to comply with public health guidance are being supported with a leave scheme to ensure they will continue to receive income, say the Minister of Workplace Relations and Safety Iain Lees-Galloway and Minister for Social Development, Carmel Sepuloni. A number of essential businesses ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 hours ago
  • Govt WhatsApp helps share COVID-19 information
    A Government WhatsApp channel has been launched to help make information more easily accessible and shareable in the fight against COVID-19. Govt.NZ, which is free to use on any mobile device, will carry information and news for the public, businesses, healthcare providers, not for profits and local government. It can ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 hours ago
  • Managed departure plan for stranded foreign nationals enables safe, orderly exit
    The Government has announced a plan to enable the safe, orderly exit of tens of thousands of stranded foreign nationals from New Zealand during the current COVID-19 Alert Level 4 restrictions, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Winston Peters has said. “When we moved into lockdown a week ago, the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 hours ago
  • Government delivers COVID-19 support to GPs and Pharmacies
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says the Government is delivering on its commitment to support general practice doctors and nurses, and pharmacies on the front-line of our fight against COVID-19. "For us to overcome COVID-19, we need community health services such as general practice and community pharmacy to step up ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 hours ago
  • Susan Thomas the new Chief High Court Judge
    Justice Susan Thomas has been appointed Chief High Court Judge, Attorney-General David Parker announced today.  She replaces Justice Geoffrey Venning who has resigned from the position.   David Parker paid tribute to Justice Venning, who he said had stewarded the High Court very capably over the last five years.   “On behalf ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    8 hours ago
  • Business Finance Guarantee – applications open
    Businesses can start applying to their banks for loans under the Business Finance Guarantee Scheme set up to support the New Zealand economy during the COVID-19 pandemic. “We’re moving quickly to protect New Zealand businesses, jobs and the economy during this unprecedented global economic shock,” Finance Minister Grant Robertson said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Work starts on ways to fast-track consents to boost recovery from Covid-19 downturn
    Work is underway looking at measures to speed up consents for development and infrastructure projects during the recovery from COVID 19, to provide jobs and stimulate our economy.  Environment Minister David Parker said the COVID-19 pandemic is a serious global crisis that will have a wide ranging and lasting impact ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Advance payments to support contractors
    Advance payments will be made to transport construction industry contractors to retain the workforce and ensure it is ready to quickly gear up to build projects which will be vital to New Zealand’s COVID-19 economic recovery, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. He said keeping the workforce required to build ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government seeks infrastructure projects
    The Government has tasked a group of industry leaders to seek out infrastructure projects that are ready to start as soon as the construction industry returns to normal to reduce the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford and Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones say. The Infrastructure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Health system scaled up to prepare for COVID-19
    Work to scale up the health system in preparation for COVID-19 was today outlined by Health Minister David Clark, as he reported back to the new Epidemic Response Committee. “We are well placed to contain the spread of COVID-19. We have taken early and decisive action at our borders, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Essential media COVID-19 guidelines refined
    The Government is refining its COVID-19 essential business guidance to include the distribution of news publications for communities which are hard to reach. The Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media, Kris Faafoi, said the move was in recognition of the importance for New Zealanders who might be harder to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Supermarkets able to open on Easter Sunday
    The Government is ensuring supermarkets can open on Easter Sunday so we can buy groceries, but stay closed on Good Friday allowing workers to take a break. This provides a balanced approach and ensures we avoid large queues that two days closure may cause. “Supermarkets will be able to open ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand defence personnel conclude mission at Taji
    Following the successful conclusion of the Building Partner Capacity (BPC) mission at Taji, New Zealand defence personnel are returning to New Zealand from Iraq, in accordance with the Cabinet decision made in June 2019, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today. “New Zealand is very ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • State of National Emergency extended
    The State of National Emergency to help stop the spread of COVID-19 has been extended for a further seven days, Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare said. The initial declaration on March 25 lasted seven days and can be extended as many times as necessary. “Since we went into isolation ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Strong Govt books support ‘go hard, go early’ response
    New Zealand’s ability to go hard and go early in the fight against COVID-19 has been underpinned by strong Government finances and the growing economy heading into this global pandemic, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. The Treasury today released the Crown financial statements for the eight months to the end ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Christchurch Hospital Hagley ICU to open to support COVID-19 response
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says 36 new intensive care beds at Christchurch Hospital’s new Hagley building are being fast tracked so they are available for treatment of COVID-19 patients.   The Ministry of Health is working with contractor CPB and Canterbury DHB to enable access to the hospital’s ICU, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government supports Air NZ freight flights
    The Government has fast-tracked up to $1 million to help Air New Zealand move urgent freight to and from New Zealand, with the first flight to Shanghai leaving tonight, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. Phil Twyford says it’s crucial that trade in vital goods such as medical supplies and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Tariff concessions on COVID-19 related products
    New Zealand will temporarily remove tariffs on all medical and hygiene imports needed for the COVID-19 response. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker and Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Kris Faafoi said today that the New Zealand Customs Service will apply tariff concessions to all diagnostic reagents and testing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Clarification of modification to wage subsidy scheme
    Minister of Finance Grant Robertson has clarified that the changes to the wage subsidy scheme announced yesterday mean that employers should be passing on the full subsidy to workers, except in the case where the person’s normal income is less than the level of the subsidy. “We still want employers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Face masks flowing to DHBs
    Medical face masks from the national reserve supply are now being distributed to District Health Boards, while at the same time local production is being ramped up. Yesterday more than 640,000 masks were sent to DHBS – that is an immediate two week supply, with more to follow in coming ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • COVID-19: Further steps to protect New Zealanders’ jobs
    The Government has made modifications to the wage subsidy scheme to ensure people don’t lose their jobs during the national lockdown. These changes will soften the impact of COVID-19 on workers, families and businesses, and position them to exit the lockdown and look to recovery, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Tax relief for Mycoplasma Bovis farmers
    Farmers whose herds were culled in response to the outbreak of Mycoplasma bovis will be able to minimise the tax treatment of their income in some circumstances. Revenue Minister Stuart Nash says Cabinet has agreed to change the law. It means farmers may be eligible to spread their income over ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • $27 million for NGOs and community groups to continue providing essential services
    A $27 million dollar package, effective immediately, is being provided to social sector services and community groups to ensure they can continue to provide essential support to communities as we stay at home as a nation to stop the spread of COVID-19, Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni announced. “At ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Statement on guilty plea of March 15 terrorist
    “The guilty plea today will provide some relief to the many people whose lives were shattered by what happened on March 15,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. “These guilty pleas and conviction bring accountability for what happened and also save the families who lost loved ones, those who were injured, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • COVID-19 updates
    The Prime Minister is holding daily press conferences to update New Zealanders on the Government's response to COVID-19. Links to videos and transcripts of these updates below. These transcripts also include All of Government press conferences led by Director Ministry of Health's Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield. 25 March: Live update from the Prime ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Police numbers break through 10,000 mark
    Frontline Police numbers have broken through the 10,000 mark for the first time in history as officers step forward to keep the community safe during the COVID19 lockdown. “Two Police graduations in Auckland and Wellington in the past week have been conducted in unprecedented circumstances,” Police Minister Stuart Nash said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Urgent tax measures for economic recovery
    Urgent legislation has been passed to support the package of economic and social measures needed to recover from the impact of the coronavirus outbreak. “The COVID-19 Response (Taxation and Social Assistance Urgent Measures) Bill will cushion New Zealanders from the worst economic impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak,” said Revenue Minister ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Further support for farmers and growers as drought persists
    From tomorrow, Government support for farmers and growers affected by drought will be expanded and extended across the country, with access to Rural Assistance Payments (RAPS) available throughout the North Island, parts of the South Island and the Chatham Islands, Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni announced. “These challenging conditions have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • COVID-19: Temporary changes to Education Act
    Parliament has passed amendments to legislation that give the Secretary of Education stronger powers to act in the fight to limit the spread of COVID-19, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “They are part of a suite of changes passed under the COVID-19 Response (Urgent Management Measures) Legislation Bill,” Chris ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar join NZ and Singapore in committing to keeping supply a...
    Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar have joined forces with New Zealand and Singapore by committing to keep supply chains open and remove any existing trade restrictive measures on essential goods, especially medical supplies, in the face of the Covid-19 crisis.  Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker today welcomed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • COVID-19: Rent increase freeze and more protection for tenants
    Immediate freeze on rent increases Tenancies will not be terminated during the lock-down period, unless the parties agree, or in limited circumstances Tenants who had previously given notice can stay in their if they need to stay in the tenancy during the lock-down period Tenants will still be able to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Working together to protect businesses and workers
    As New Zealand unites to lock-down in the fight against COVID-19, the Finance Minister is urging all businesses and workers to stay connected over the next four weeks. “We understand the extreme pressure many businesses are under right now. I know most business owners think of their workers as family ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • State of National Emergency declared to fight COVID-19
    A State of National Emergency has been declared across the country as the Government pulls out all the stops to curtail the spread of COVID-19. “Today we put in place our country’s second ever State of National Emergency as we fight a global pandemic, save New Zealanders’ lives and prevent ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister’s statement on State of National Emergency and Epidemic Notice
    Mr Speaker I wish to make a Ministerial Statement under Standing Order 347 in relation to the recent declaration of a State of National Emergency. Having considered the advice of the Director Civil Defence Emergency Management, the Minister of Civil Defence declared a State of National Emergency for the whole of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Deadline for domestic travel extended
    People needing to travel on domestic flights, trains and Cook Strait ferries to get home before the country moves into level 4 lock-down tomorrow night will be able to continue using the passenger services until midnight on Friday, Transport Minister Phil Twyford said today. Domestic passenger services, particularly ferries, have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Mortgage holiday and business finance support schemes to cushion COVID impacts
    The Government, retail banks and the Reserve Bank are today announcing a major financial support package for home owners and businesses affected by the economic impacts of COVID-19. The package will include a six month principal and interest payment holiday for mortgage holders and SME customers whose incomes have been ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government working to keep air freight moving
    Minister of Transport Phil Twyford has today announced details of the Government’s support package to keep key air freight moving and ensure New Zealanders retain access to essential goods during the four-week level 4 lockdown. “The Government is working with airlines and air freight operators to ensure New Zealand’s key ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand moves to COVID-19 Alert Level 3, then Level 4 in 48 hours
    New Zealand moved up to COVID-19 Alert Level 3 – Restrict New Zealand to move up to COVID-19 Alert Level 4 – Eliminate, in 48 hours Two-staged approach to give people and businesses time to prepare  Level 3, from tomorrow Non-essential businesses must close All events and gatherings must be ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister: COVID-19 Alert Level increased
    Good afternoon  The Cabinet met this morning to discuss our next actions in the fight against COVID-19.  Like the rest of the world, we are facing the potential for devastating impacts from this virus. But, through decisive action, and through working together, do we have a small window to get ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago