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Open mike 31/08/2021

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, August 31st, 2021 - 188 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post.

For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).

Step up to the mike …

188 comments on “Open mike 31/08/2021 ”

  1. Ad 1

    The anxiety levels in west Auckland from simultaneous level 4 lockdown and a flood require free distribution of 6 deep chocolate marijuana cookies to everyone.

    • Sabine 1.1

      The chocolate is fine, but the weed is illegal no matter the need.

      But this is my old neighborhood, and waking up the news today was hard and sad.

  2. Jester 2

    Difficult interview for Grant Robertson on One ZB. Poor bloke is spinning like a top. Why didn't Hipkins front for this?

    Grant Robertson denies that the Government delayed vaccine shipment (newstalkzb.co.nz)

  3. Drowsy M. Kram 3

    Encouraging news in the midst of considerable catastropfizing over vaccine supplies:

    Covid 19: Government closing in on a ScoMo-style deal for extra vaccine supply [5 am, 31 August]

    And here’s an interesting ‘conversation’:

    We’ve all grown tired of lockdowns, border closures and other restrictions. So the promise of a freer life, when 70% and then 80% of Australians aged 16 and older are vaccinated, feels like a beacon on the horizon.

    Prime Minister Scott Morrison, some premiers, and leading public servants have promised us at 80% we can live “safely” with COVID-19, or come out of our “caves” in the PM’s parlance.

    The narrative is one of Team Australia and we are “all in this together”. But are we really?


    • tc 3.1

      WA premier climbed into that stupid comment from popup Scotty.

      WA's aren't living in caves and have a mining economy keeping Oz going thanks to effective border controls.

      Lets all play covid weakest link with the country appears the scomo play backed by wuperts media.

    • Gypsy 3.2

      "That seems a hyperbolic judgement, "


      The fundamental problem with socialism is that it contradicts the most basic human instincts. Ultimately the self contradictions contained within it's ideology begin to eat away from within, and the state is then forced to introduce draconian measures to ensure it's ongoing survival. The evidence is the array of socialist states that have broken down under the weight of failing economies and brutal authoritarianism.

      Socialism failed in the 20th century, and it is failing in the 21st century. At best it is an illustration of why we should never give the state any more power than is necessary to ensure the worst excesses of the free market are curtailed.

      As to inequality – there was (and remains) substantial inequality in socialist countries. Much of this was hidden by poor record keeping, and took many forms.

      There are nine democratic socialist countries currently. (Although some of those would be disputed – many have some form of private ownership and investment). When compared to the number of countries that have market economies as their political preference, perhaps that tells a story in itself. But those DS countries have far from eliminated inequality. Venezuela has substantial inequality. Ecuador rejected socialist policies in favour of the free market, affirmed again earlier this year. And so it goes on.

      Ultimately it is mixed market economies that have been the most successful, with the democratic process determining the precise mix of state and private engagement.

  4. Morrissey 4

    Australian commentator claims that military occupation brought women's rights to Afghanistan; Jenny-May Coffin fails to challenge a single thing she utters.

    Breakfast, TVNZ1, Tuesday 31 August 2021, 8:20 a.m.

    Jenny-May Coffin assumed her most concerned face this morning and interviewed, via Skype, one Jane Caro, billed as a "social analyst" from the Hunter Valley, NSW. Jane Caro averred that women in Afghanistan had only had the chance to dress freely and live a full life in the last twenty years, thanks to the country "being occupied by the United States, and its allies like Australia." [1]

    That is untrue. The secular Daoud government, which came to power in Kabul in 1978, instituted sweeping reforms, including especially equal rights for women and universal education. [2] The United States and Great Britain, instead of praising and supporting this, worked assiduously with extremist Muslim groups to embark on a campaign of terror and sabotage against the Democratic Republic of Afghanistan, for no other reason than that the Daoud government was endorsed by the Soviet Union. This U.S.-sponsored terror and sabotage started six months before the Soviets sent military aid to the beleaguered government.

    Jane Caro either knew this, and was simply lying with her claim that women's rights only arrived with the U.S. military invasion, or she was ignorant of the very fact of the Daoud government, in which case she should not have been commenting on anything to do with Afghanistan. Instead of challenging Caro's nonsense, Jenny-May Coffin merely nodded gravely and tried to look concerned. sad

    [1] https://www.theage.com.au/national/get-rid-of-the-prisoners-by-shooting-them-australian-commandos-tell-of-war-crimes-20190910-p52prl.html

    [2] https://edition.cnn.com/2014/06/05/asia/gallery/afghan-women-past-present/index.html

    • Ad 4.1

      Check out all those women and children flying back into Kabul at the moment. Not.

      And those mighty drivers of female liberation: the mighty Communist coup in 1978. Then the late 1979 Soviet invasion. Female liberation!

      History of women's rights in Afghanistan:


      • Morrissey 4.1.1

        So you think that the U.S. decision in 1978 to organize and arm the extremist Muslim opponents of women's rights was the right one?

        By the way, Scott Levi is almost as dodgy a source as poor old Jane Caro. This sentence from his potted history is a model of mendaciousness: “In the mid-1980s, the United States (and others) began to supply the Mujahidin with financial support and military equipment.”

        In fact, as Scott Levi—but maybe not Jane Caro or Jenny-May Coffin—knows perfectly well, the United States was arming and supporting the Mujahidin long before the mid-1980s.

        • Ad

          I tell you what, I'll do a post on the top 20 biggest US boots on the ground interventions and you can armchair your chinwags until the cows come home.

          • Byd0nz

            Well that post would read like horror story of fascist proportions, the only good place for American boots on the ground, would be in the ground buried deep deep down.

    • millsy 4.2

      Yes, if the US military gave a shit about women and girls, it would have marched into the White House and arrested Donald Trump and Mike Pence.

      Also would have lined outside every abortion clinic in the USA and used lethal force on any Bible bashing bigot that even looked like they were going to harrass staff and patients.

    • Treetop 4.3

      Do you think the US can work with the Taliban when it comes to diplomacy?

      A line has been drawn militarily between the US and the Taliban after 20 years.

      What position do you think ISIS-K will have in Afganistan?

      • McFlock 4.3.1

        If I understand the politics of Afghanistan correctly (doubtful) and to sufficient granularity (also doubtful), ISIS-K are to the Taliban what the Taliban were to the rest of the Afghan Mujahiddeen.

        • Treetop

          I meant to say ISIL-K. This group came from Syria and Iraq and Pakistan kicked them out.

          I think Pakistan is the country which will have influence in Afganistan.

          • McFlock

            Really depends on the region within the "country". A lot of the problem is based on fixing "borders" that overlap multiple cultures and ethnic groups (for a given value of demographic granularity), and then expecting centralised policy and control.

            Wait until we read about the US giving intel to the Taleban to target ISIL-K because that would hurt [insert country here's] influence in the region. Unthinkable now, but complex situations make strange bedfellows.

            • Treetop

              Today is September the 1st. It will be interesting to see if peace will prevail. Hopefully lessons from 1 September 1939 will be learnt. Interesting that America did not enter World War 2 until the bombing of Pearl Harbour 7 December 1941. America did support their allies with war supplies prior to Pearl Harbour.

              • McFlock

                WW2 isn't the model.

                "The Great Game" is. SSDCentury.

                US, Russia, China, India (to screw with the Pakistanis), Pakistan, Iran, and a couple of others all playing silly buggers with guns, bombs, money, and suchlike. Get as much power as they can to get resources and bleed the others while not bleeding too much oneself.

    • AB 4.4

      If a journalist's first instinct in recent days hasn't been to dig out a short, potted history of Afghanistan from somewhere on the web – they shouldn't be in the job. They'd do this because they'd know that we all live inside history – history is not 'was', but 'is'. They don't necessarily need to draw any particular conclusion about Afghanistan in the 1970's-80's from such a shallow dive – but you'd expect them to know some of the facts and be able to put them on the table as a challenge to an interviewee. I guess the mistake here is to believe that Jenny-May is employed as a journalist. She's not – this is breakfast tv and it's about having congenial hosts that are liked by a target demographic and deliver eyeballs to advertisers. A decent non-commercial tv channel might help.

  5. Stephen D 5

    So the coup is complete. National is now run by the evangelist right of the party.

    From today’s NZH.

    ”Overall, the select committee reshuffle moves the caucus' liberal MPs to less powerful and less high profile committees.

    In the case of Muller, the move is to be expected. Retiring MPs are often shuffled into less high profile roles.

    Moving Willis from finance and expenditure is a significant step, given the committee's prominence, influence, and power.

    Bishop's relative demotions are to be expected. His previous select committee positions were commensurate with his role as shadow leader of the house.”

    • roblogic 5.1

      The word is Evangelical and they aren't all one thing, just like adherents of the several other faiths and cultures elected to represent NZ in Parliament.

      A culture change in National is badly needed — but not the current Trumpish path they seem to be heading down.

      • Incognito 5.1.1

        The National Party is what the GOP was to Trump?

        Here’s a little quiz question for you all: who is the NZ Trump?

        • roblogic

          John Key seems to be the most recent example of a cult of personality, propped up by a cynical right wing establishment, attempting to appeal to the working class, but in reality doing a lot of underhanded stuff.

          National is looking for another Muldoonish strong leader to bully NZ into submission. They are engaging in GOP style obstructionism and Fox news talking points with no basis in reality (aka. lies).

          Someone with a media profile and who appears plausible? Mark Richardson would be my guess

  6. Gypsy 6

    Today is 47 years since the death of Norman Kirk.

    Growing up in a suburb of Auckland heavily dominated by state housing, I remember the affection in which he was held by my parents friends and neighbours.

    • Byd0nz 6.1

      Yes. One of our greatest Leaders.

      His Superanuation scheme would have been the saviour of NZ if Muldoon had not destroyed it, Local Bodies could borrow from it with very low interest rates.

      Good on you for reminding us of Big Norm.

      • Patricia Bremner 6.1.1

        I remember being proud of our Government and Kirk's stand against nuclear activity in the Pacific. Our lone frigate accompanied by a flotilla of concerned Kiwis.

      • alwyn 6.1.2

        " Local Bodies could borrow from it with very low interest rates.".

        That is one of the main problems with all these schemes. You get a great big pool of money that is supposed to provide for the retirement income of the general populace and the thing that almost always happens is that politicians decide to try to use it to pay for schemes that simply waste the money.

        I was never a great fan of Michael Cullen but at least he tried to keep the so-called Cullen Fund away from the reach of short-sighted politicians who saw it simply as a slush fund to pay for their fanciful dreams. Spend it on Public Transport, or cycleways, or anything else that they like the look of rather than on something that will build the value of the fund and actually provide a retirement income for people who are forced to belong to it. After all, those politicians will be long gone when people discover there is really nothing there to pay super people were promised.

        The Muldoon scheme, although far too generous and starting at too early an age had a rational basis to it. Make it Universal and pay it out of current taxation. There is no incentive for political zealots to try and plunder the fund because there isn't one.

        • KJT

          Saving for super has always been an oxymoron.

          As most of the money paid to pensioners, is immediately spent back into the local economy, and it is a charge on a share of local resources especially current goods and services, PAYGO makes more sense. Same as it does with ACC.

          Muldoon made sense on that one.

          The idea that Labours super scheme would still be in existence now, without being plundered and/or privatised by the later Neo-liberals, as they did with almost everything else, is a nice fantasy.

        • solkta

          Paying it out of the current taxation was the irrational part of Muldoon's scheme. The country's fertility rate had halved and stabilised. It was obvious that the boomers would be a large demographic bubble. Ignoring that amounted to intergenerational theft.

          • KJT

            The "intergenerational theft," meme started by those who want to privatise super, is self serving bollocks.

            Where do you think pensioners spend the money they get. And who benefits from the resulting employment and economic activity?

            The myth of “Retirement Savings”

            • solkta

              Wealthy people receive super too.

              • KJT

                They do.

                Which is why we still have it.

                Though, in a just world they would be paying much more in tax than they receive in super.

                • solkta

                  There are a lot of people who are moderately wealthy. They have enough to live on from other means and super is just extra for overseas holidays and alike.

                  • KJT

                    Which is an argument for wealth taxes, not for removing or cutting universal state super.

                    • solkta

                      We were discussing whether Muldoon's scheme was rational, it wasn't.

                    • Nic the NZer []

                      Your thinking about retirement savings like an individual, you need to think about it like a government if you want to say something about super annuation.

                      The appropriate income for retirees is not determined by taxation revenue, its more or less what the govt thinks appropriate (as are taxation decisions). There are no hard fiscal constraints on these decisions, just a bunch of opinions on what is fair.

                      If you want an analogy imagine your household has a chore roster and a bunch of weekly privileges for participants. Last week you recorded 2 chores per member per day (which is like retirement payments, though its for chores) and you cancelled those at week end and handed out rewards (this is taxation). Now in your world you might think if there were more chores to do you would be financially unable to do them (even though your tax rate is 100%). But obviously in reality you can just record more chores next week, your not limited in what gets recorded, or if thats perceived as fair, and so on.

                    • KJT


                      ,"The finance industry have been creaming their pants, for a return to the halcyon days, before the tax rebates were removed from superannuation savings. When they got to play with our money for free, and the negative returns and high charges were ignored, because of tax payer subsidies. Egged on by the neo-liberals who prefer the elderly, the unemployed and the sick to starve in the streets, as an incentive to scare working people into accepting starvation wages, while they continue to get 17% increases in wealth, the finance industry is dreaming of getting more of their sticky hands on our wealth, with private super funds. Since the 70's they have been constant in the meme that we cannot afford super. A meme that has been driven entirely by the self interest of those, who are too wealthy to need super and too mean to pay taxes, and a greedy finance industry. Unfortunately, it is true, that if you repeat bullshit often enough, even those who should know better come to believe it. We cannot afford super is code for, "we should leave our elderly to beg on the streets". So that wealthy people can pay less tax and the finance industry can again lose our savings for us".

                    • KJT

                      In your opinion.

                    • solkta

                      Surely in your opinion too if you think it needs a wealth tax to make it work. That is not something Muldoon would have considered. Muldoon was reckless, and not just with this.

                    • KJT

                      In Muldoons time there were wealth taxes.

                      It was later Governments who replaced taxes on the better off, I paid 63% top rate, with GST on the poor.and there were inheritance and other wealth taxes since removed.

                    • solkta

                      Oh, so you are talking higher paye and inheritance not a comprehensive wealth tax.

                      There was also free tertiary education and universal student loans and help to buy your first house and lots of other stuff. If all those settings had been left in place we would still have been in the shit once the boomer bulge came through to retirement age. Muldoon ignored this because it would not be his problem. He could have set up a Cullen Fund back then to deal with it, but he didn't.

                    • KJT

                      You are not understanding the point.

                      The requirements to live, for people who can no longer work, do not change whether it is paid for by, "savings" current taxes or Government super funds.

                      We eieither allocate enough resources for the elderly to live from current production and services, or we leave them to live in poverty.

                      Private "savings" including Government funds investing in things that don't increase capacity are the most expensive way to provide for super, as there is always extra creamed off by outside interests. From current taxes is the cheapest way.
                      As is making it universal.

                      Muldoon was right on this one, even though he was wrong in so many others

                    • solkta

                      From my perspective you don't get the point. You just sound like another entitled boomer to me.

                    • KJT

                      Thanks for the unthinking meme.

                      It has fuckall to do with generations. And everything to do with the wealthy screwing people in all generations.

                      Memes like that are just playing into their hands.

                      I will get super anyway. Provided my health after decades of shift and manual work lets me last that long.

                      I want it to be there for future generations.

                      I know if we give it up now, they will never get it back.

                      Which is why I fucking well fight for it. Along with decent wages and working conditions for those coming after me.

                    • solkta

                      If you want to keep it then a good place to start would be to acknowledge that Muldoon was reckless in not taking account of the boomer demographic bulge and that this has made it unfair for younger generations. But just disregarding that does not put you in a strong position.

                    • roblogic

                      Muldoon had many failings, but Universal Super wasn't one. It shows that a UBI is a necessary and humane response to the unrestrained capitalism that has ruined the lives of working Kiwis for a generation.

                      Yes we can afford it, and morally we must do it.

                  • McFlock

                    The other issue is whether it's cheaper to go near-universal or regularly audit everyone's income – including "non-wealthy" people who pay a peppercorn rent to live in the mansion of a family trust, etc.

                    And the repercussions of a system that lets people in need be declined because they didn't keep up with the paperwork.

                • bwaghorn

                  I saw a smug old coutt on tv the other night 89 years old living the life in the mount, reckoned he didnt need super but took it because it was his right, now hes had 29 years of super so hes only only probably 10 ish years away from getting super for as long as he worked. Given the age was 60 when he would have received it .

                  • KJT

                    How much tax is he paid and is paying?

                    Did his work, including what he does in retirement contribute to society?

                    I know another who retired at 60 with the Muldoon pension. He continued and still does, carry on with his former job, social work and remedial reading for school kids. At 90 he teaches, unpaid, carving and remedial reading at the local school. He would not be able to do this without the pension.

                    • bwaghorn

                      I have know way of knowing that, I know an 86 year old who crowed to me how little tax he had paid in his life, very wealthy man he is , paid alot of interest to banks though, he said.

                  • Jester

                    Winston Peters took the pension didn't he?

            • alwyn

              A most interesting post.

        • Nic the NZer

          The Cullen fund is just as much a political football as anything used on local government. Thats why the National government makes a repeated point of not paying in and the Labour a point of paying in.

          This comes to a head when its (presumably) eventually drawn down to reduce the budget deficit caused by demographic shifts, at which point we get to see who in govt likes having a pool of money up for investment to back their profitable investors rhetoric.

          We should not of course mistake it for savings because (as is more obvious these days) the govt can't really save in the currency it issues, and just gets the RBNZ to issue more spending as needed anyway. Apparently it even likes to keep 'saving' while also having urgent spending needs anyway (like its borrowing to fill up its savings account) demonstrating that the saving aspect of this is just something for the plebs to believe.

          • Tricledrowni

            Returns on the Cullen fund are much more than the cost of borrowing or printing and have been right through the life of the fund.plus the tax take from the profitable investments are higher than the contributions.

            • Nic the NZer

              Just what is the marginal cost of printing, btw? Seems to be basically zero since its all electronic these days and if it wasn't then that cost can be printed in (I will claim borrowing is similar enough).

              So it turns out that the govt is good at investing profitably given a cost of funds which is up to them. In fact as I highlighted this is just a gimmic to convince the plebs that the govt is a worthy funds manager. Well you appear to be convinced anyway.

              • Tricledrown

                Nic just printing money is not the answer to everything.The $30 billion of QE given to our banks recently to keep liquidity in the financial sector worked in that area but has lead to the banks funding only safe investment causing massive inflation in the housing market and massive increases in bank profits.

                • Nic the NZer

                  Thats not how QE works. People who say QE causes house price inflation, and actually understand QE are making a counterfactual of the country running a lockdown with no wage subsidy support. That could easily have caused a recession and associated house price slump, but its obviously not something you do as govt to target house prices. If the govt doesn't do QE (or any of their more unusual self funding options) but still does the wage subsidy, then they would pay more for their deficit (and less to themselves) but house prices would have jumped just the same, with the same people having the same access to wage subsidy and period of incentive to jump into the market. Ultimately the recent buyers decide what level of price rises they will borrow, this is not centrally planned.

                  It is certain that banks could have done the same lending with or without QE, their lending is basically constrained by the stream of credit worthy customers coming in the door, nothing more.

                  Having got that out the way, you seem to support the use of QE to stuff funds into the Cullen fund, rather than not using as much of the self funding mechanism. All I'm highlighting is that the self funding mechanism is always there, so any fiscal constraints (or prudent investor policies) you impose on the country are always voluntary and self imposed. Sometimes you may do things voluntarily for the marketing, sometimes this is called virtue signaling.

                  • Tricledrown

                    Nic When you have a recession looming bank deposits dry up bank lending becomes harder to get. Govts buy all the banks bad and poorly performing debt as in a recession businesses stop paying loans and Bill's the banks stop loaning to businesses ,banks struggle to borrow money to lend deposits dry up.so govts print money and lend it to banks , at the moment •25% so the govt profits .In exchange the reserve bank takes over banks under performing loans freeing up the banks to lend to safer clients .The banks during these times are preferring to lend for bricks and mortar than to businesses as business loans are far riskier.

                    So around the world where QE is being used house prices are inflating because it's easy to get a loan on an asset that is rising and can be repossessed in any mortgagee sale as opposed to a business ,creating house price bubbles around the World.

                    If govt printed money to fix productivity problems ie housing shortages I would be ok with that but even that needs careful managing as we see in NZ ,we have shortages of construction materials ie timber for construction and Labour for construction so causing inflation .

                    It's easy to believe that pressing a button and printing billions can solve problems instantly but it rarely does and when it works iit s in times of low inflation and no supply constrictions.

                    • Nic the NZer

                      Your model of bank lending is demonstrably wrong. In practice, including in NZ banks don't face a reserve shortage constraint and its part of official policy that they won't. Thats what the OCR is about, as long as a bank is in good standing it can always (if the interbank market doesn't do it cheaper) borrow reserves from the RBNZ (at the OCR) should it need to in order to settle. As long as Paul Volker isn't central bank head then the bank can still pass on the interest rate difference there profitably.

                      We need another basis for additional bank credit drying up in this case. Of course this is obvious enough, during a recession you look a lot harder at a potential borrowers income and adjust the assessment of likely repayment. It also helps if there is a security attached to the loan, like a house.

                      This also explains why doing QE in spades has never worked as advertised, e.g the largest monetary policy intervention in history was unable to avoid a recession in the US (and other countries).

                      Of course NZ didn't escape from conventional policy very far so you should be contrasting QE against NZ recession (due to lack of lockdown fiscal policy intervention to offset domestic saving rate increases) because those are the alternatives the govt considered. In considering NZ I would say it worked so far, and with a bit of luck this lockdown it will keep working (the obvious point being its actually the sufficient fiscal policy working, even if the NZ govt was only willing to do that when self lending via QE).

    • roblogic 6.2

      +1. When Labour lived up to its name.

    • Herodotus 6.3

      a song to remember being on topic from ebony

    • Peter 1 6.4

      And the last of the real Labour party.

      • alwyn 6.4.1

        Indeed yes. Norm was of course strongly opposed to allowing freer access to abortion and to homosexual law reform. If he had lived, and he could have easily still be head of the Parliamentary Labour Party right through to the early 1990's I don't think you would have seen the progress that was achieved after he died.

        That would, I suspect, have been more in line with the attitudes of the union-led, traditional, Labour Party than some of the people in leadership roles today.

        • roblogic

          Unfortunately "Progress" in the 80's also included a fire sale of precious state assets and irresponsible deregulation, leading to the crash of '87 and an extended recession

          • Gypsy

            You're right, mistakes were made. But painful as it was, the transformation of the economy in the 1980's was absolutely necessary. The strength of our economy since, and it's resilience to an array of economic and natural shocks since, is evidence enough.

            • KJT

              FFS. Are their really people who still believe that myth.

              The ,"reforms" that bought us from level pegging with Oz to 30% behind were a self inflicted disaster!

              Some things had to go, such as the ,”social welfare for sheep” though noting that farming subsidies cost almost as much now. And the taxes on nascent industry such as the caravan tax.

              • Gypsy

                You seem to be confused. The reforms of the Labour government in the 1980's transformed the NZ economy from a controlled economy that was close to defaulting on it's overseas obligations to one that has survived multiple economic and natural shocks. Our businesses compete with the very best in the world, and our economic performance has attracted numerous accolades.

                Ultimately the decision is the peoples. Since 1984, the only governments elected have maintained the broad thrust of the reforms of the 1980's. The floating exchange rate, lower personal taxes, GST, monetary policy, independence of the RB the list is long and those reforms have served us well.

                • KJT


                  By the way no party has actually given us a choice in rolling back the Neo-liberal ," unfortunate experiment".

                  Even when we voted Labour out after only two terms because of our only self inflicted recession, And the destruction, National continued with it.

                  The only one of the people that did it, who had the guts to admit they were wrong was Bolger.

                  Never mind the fucking Reserve Bank Act, which punishes those of us who keep the country going with higher interest rates whenever wages and the economy shows signs of getting off the ground.
                  There are good reasons why voters wouldn’t have a bar of the party of those who carried out the reforms, ACT, until memories have faded of what they did.
                  Meanwhile we still get unthinking BS that you have just repeated, trying to justify destroying so many lives, by pretending it was "necessary".

                  • McFlock

                    On at least one policy, the nats explicitly lied: Lockwood Smith signed a pledge to cancel the nascent student loan scheme when campaigning, then skyrocketed fees and expanded the loan scheme while minister for education. That's the one I remember, there were no doubt other instances where the nats promised one thing and did the opposite. Not, like, weasel words. Explicit lies.

                    Decision of the people, my arse.

                    • Gypsy

                      The student loan scheme was not not introduced until 1992. And it was certainly not part of the economic transformation Labour engineered in the 1980's.

                    • McFlock

                      Maybe it was fucking fees then.


                      As opposition education spokesman in 1990, Smith promised to remove the Labour Government's tertiary tuition fee of $1250, if elected. Once in office, he kept this promise on a technicality: he shifted the burden of charging fees for courses from the government to the institutions, who then had to charge even higher tuition fees due to decreased government funding.

                      Not so sure about the "technicality" bs, either: his signed pledge never said who charged the fee. His government increased student fees, the liar. I guess that's why there's no footnote for the "technicality" claim.

                    • Gypsy

                      Fees for tertiary education did not begin with the 1980's reforms. And after the reforms, the government continued to fund a large slice of the cost. So you might get third time lucky?

                      It's also real stretch to conflate tertiary fees with wider monetary reform when considering voter preference. The economic reforms were introduced at pace almost immediately upon the election of the Lange government in mid 1984. The tertiary sector reforms were not introduced until the late 1980's. The only election the Lange government won on the back of the economic reforms was in 1987, at which both major parties increased their % of the popular vote, Labour by 5%.

                    • McFlock

                      quick look at your link: "The standard tertiary fee was created." When? 1989-1990.

                      That was a major increase in course costs and the threshold for user pays. Who cares if the govt continued to pay some. It should pay all, for a variety of reasons.

                      It's also real stretch to conflate tertiary fees with wider monetary reform when considering voter preference.

                      Fair call, that's just the issue that was important to me at the time. Is it the only policy about which they lied (or, to use tory spin, used a "technicality")? Well:

                      The National Party was performing strongly — its leader, Jim Bolger, spoke repeatedly of "the Decent Society", saying that the reforms were doing significant damage to the social fabric of the country.

                      Did fuckall about that, didn't they.

                    • Gypsy

                      "Did fuckall about that, didn't they."

                      And yet they were re-elected in 1993 and 1996.

                    • McFlock

                      And yet they were re-elected in 1993 and 1996.

                      Well, the first was under FPP, so they got an outright majority of seats with 1/3 of the vote (52% voted for Labour or the Alliance), and the second relied on them going into coalition with a party that only 15% of whose voters wanted them to keep national in power.

                      Again, decision of the people? Bullshit.

                    • Gypsy

                      "Are you talking about the actual website that was developed in a mixed economy, or the infrastructure and protocols that were developed with US government funding?"

                      Actually I wasn't specifically thinking about the website, but I'll take that. Here's what happens when roblogic puts a comment up:

                      1. R types his comment on a device device designed and built by private enterprise.

                      2. R types his comment in a word processing/capture system designed and built by private enterprise.

                      3. R sends his message via a connection a medium called the internet, which is a collaborative creation of public and private actors.

                      4. R's message is transmitted via a communication medium in which the infrastructure and distribution is owned and operated by private enterprise.

                      5. R's message is displayed on a website that has been built by private enterprise.


                    • Gypsy

                      "Well, the first was under FPP, so they got an outright majority of seats with 1/3 of the vote…"

                      Which was still more than any other party got.

                      ".and the second relied on them going into coalition with a party that only 15% of whose voters wanted them to keep national in power."

                      Which they could do because they won 34% of the party vote compared with the next party who only won 28%.

                    • roblogic

                      Steve Wozniak would not approve of this bullshit. You're conveniently ignoring the essential role of public education, laws that protect intellectual property, the role of publicly funded NASA and CERN in kickstarting Silicon Valley, the assembly at Foxconn in China, supply chains that are dependent on infrastructure and the rule of law, public libraries, state funded electricity and telecoms networks (especially in NZ), public toilets, a public health system (without which I would probably be dead)

                      What is the use of a bunch of fucken bankers from Wall St or the City of London in any of that? Capitalists are worse than useless, they are a drain on productive society

                    • McFlock

                      what rot, on both counts. The internet is built on the back of US govt research, and the WWW was invented by employees at a govt run research consortium. Heck, even today not all companies are necessarily "private enterprise" – Huawei comes to mind.

                      As for the elections, in 1993 the will of the people was a Labour-alliance govt, and in 1996 the majority of people voted for parties that had promised an end to the National govt. Now we can debate whether Winston or Anderton screwed the deal, but don't go thinking Bolger continuing as PM was the people's decision (on a majority level). It wasn't even the wish of the majority of people who voted NZ1.

                    • Gypsy

                      "The internet is built on the back of US govt research, and the WWW was invented by employees at a govt run research consortium."

                      That may have been it's origins, but then:

                      As the network grew, the Department of Defense began to find it difficult to know who even was using the network; this gave rise to serious concerns over security. Therefore, in the early 1980s, researchers and the private sector took over much of the development and expansion of the Arpanet, which then became the internet. During this period of innovation, developers and inventors typically turned over their technology to the public domain.

                      "As for the elections, in 1993 the will of the people was a Labour-alliance govt"

                      You don't know that, simply because that was never explicitly on the ballot.

                      "…and in 1996 the majority of people voted for parties that had promised an end to the National govt."

                      More people voted for National than any other party. More people supported that party's policies than any other party.

                    • McFlock

                      Literal tomes have been written about the elections in the 1990s and what polling and electoral returns indicated about what the people wanted vs what they got.

                      As for singing the praises for the free market, DARPA still created the internet, and CERN still developed HTTP just like 3m wouldn't be making velcro without NASA $$$.

                      Bored now, others can play with this tool.

                  • Gypsy

                    The Greens have offered an alternative economic policy for several elections. What’s the highest vote % they have obtained?

                    • roblogic

                      What's the % of people who voted for successive governments to flog off State assets?

                      Bugger all.

                      And yet your rogernome mates sold everything, including Grandma and the kitchen sink.

                      But hey, at least John Key made us chuckle

                • KJT

                  It has taken us decades to struggle out if the damage caused in the 80's and 90's.

                  Unfortunately so much of it is irreversable, or like the privatisations and power "reforms" to expensive to reverse.

                  • Gypsy

                    We have enjoyed decades of prosperity as a result of those changes. If things were so bad, the changes would have been reversed. Successive Labour and National governments have kept the basic mechanisms of those changes in place.

                  • Gypsy

                    "Meanwhile Democratic Socialist/ Actual Socialist, rather than totalitarian countries that say they are socialist, regimes are our most succesful States to date."

                    And yet you can;t name one. There are actually not many 'Democratic Socialist' states. Venezuela's one. And among that list, I'd hardly describe them as 'our most successful states to date'.

                  • Gypsy

                    "Countries with large State investment in the economy are the most successful."

                    You're confused. If they have high state investment, then they have an element of private sector investment. That's not socialism.

                  • Gypsy

                    "Have a look at the proportion living in poverty and their GDP"

                    In 1989, in the death throws of socialism in the USSR, poverty was 20%. In the USA at the same time it was 12%. Socialism destroys everything in it's pathway. Freedoms. Economic prosperity. People.

                    • KJT

                      Again you prove you have NFI what Socialism is.

                      As deluded as the US republicans. Whose views you are parroting.

                      Why did I know Venezuala would be mentioned. Neo-liberal apologists need a new script. They always forget to mention their low tax, small state nirvana's Haiti, or Somalia.

                      If,as one of your fellow parrots accepted, that the degree of socialism in a country is determined by the State share of the economy. Venezuala is less Socialist than the USA, which has a State share over 40%. Of course the problems with Venezuala have nothing to do with any sort of ism. But simply the USA "squeezing their economy until it bleeds". Because the USA cannot afford to have an example on their door step, of a country which puts it's people, not it's billionaires, first.

                      You still forgot to tell me what the percentage living in poverty in Russia was from 1917 compared to 1960.

                      You could also look at the USA from the 1950's when they had Socialist policies like the GI bill, the reason behind their explosion of innovation after WW2, and 90% taxes on millionaires, compared with their current decline and steep increase in people living in poverty, since their equivalent of Rogernomics

                    • Drowsy M. Kram

                      Socialism destroys everything in it's pathway.

                      That seems a hyperbolic judgement, if indeed "In 1989, in the death throws of socialism in the USSR, poverty was 20%." Only the most one-eyed ideologue could equate ‘20% poverty’ to "detroys everything", but maybe I'm misinterpreting your evidence and/or PoV?

                      Democratic socialism might attempt to if not reverse then at least put the brakes on the unsustainable concentration of (ludicrous levels of) wealth in capitalist 'societies'. Who really believes this concentration of wealth is a net benefit to society?

                      Inequality in the U.S. is much more than a moral disgrace [1 Sept 2021]

                      If one aspires to extreme wealth then go for it – whatever floats your yacht. But it seems so pointless and short-sighted – an own goal.

                      Why poverty in New Zealand is everyone's concern
                      Liang describes poverty as a "heritable condition" that perpetuates and amplifies through generations: "It is also not hard to see how individual poverty flows into communities and society, with downstream effects on economics, crime and health, as well as many other systems. Loosen one strand and everything else unravels."

                      A Kete Half Empty
                      Poverty is your problem, it is everyone's problem, not just those who are in poverty. – Rebecca, a child from Te Puru

                • roblogic

                  It's been great for the 1% and their mission to plunder our public assets.

                  NZ is now the least affordable country in the OECD.

                  Rogernomics is a disgusting lie and a betrayal of all that Labour once stood for.

                  • Gypsy

                    It's been great for the vast majority of New Zealanders. Labour pulled us kicking and screaming into the real world. Without them, we would have been buried by the increased globalisation that followed.

                  • Gypsy

                    "capitalism is an unsustainable model…"

                    NZ's economic changes in the 1980's rebalanced the mixed market away from being dominated by state intervention to a greater degree of free market involvement. Capitalism will evolve, but it is firmly entrenched across the world, including in those countries in which command economics had failed. It is sustainable, and it isn't going away.

                    • roblogic

                      what planet have you been on? the global economy has been melting down, it was already massively unbalanced by QE and now Covid has been an opportunity for bankers to loot the public purse on an unprecedented scale

                      To prevent the collapse of the financial system, the FRS is launching a new program of measures worth $4 trillion. As a result, the sum spent on supporting the US economy in 2020 will exceed the scale of Quantitative Easing (QE) in 2008-2014.

                    • roblogic

                  • Gypsy

                    "The "vast majority" I think you mean the top 10%. Everyone else has gone backwards."

                    Do you have any evidence that 90% of NZérs have 'gone backwards'? Increasing inequality can still mean everyone is better off.

                  • Gypsy

                    "what planet have you been on? the global economy has been melting down, "

                    No, it really hasn't. Capitalism self corrects. It is an evolving model, and in virtually every country in which it is deployed it is simply one of two components of a mixed market economy.

                  • Gypsy

                    "Of course, you can basically eliminate the working class from statistics if you take "averages". The top 10% wealthiest socioeconomic strata owns over 50% of the wealth so yes "kiwis are getting wealthier" might be true in a very stupid and selfish way, but all the gains are going to a tiny elite few.

                    We could have a discussion about inequality, sure. But I was addressing Stuarts specific claims.

                  • Gypsy

                    "capitalism looks good during the growth phase then it turns into a darwinian contest red in tooth and claw. no social conscience whatsoever"

                    Economic systems don't have 'consciences'. That's the reason I would never advocate for unfettered capitalism.

                  • Gypsy

                    "Are you Don Brash?"

                    Good grief no. I'm not arguing rising inequality is a good thing. I'm simply saying that rising inequality does not mean the majority of people are not better off. Free market policies have been an important contributor to lifting large numbers of people out of poverty around the world. It seems almost churlish to argue against the economic progress NZ has made using similar policies.

                    • roblogic

                      Yes even Marx observed the power of the profit motive. But he also recognised that capitalism corrupts democracy and causes widespread suffering & oppression of workers, and financial crashes

                    • roblogic

                      BTW the industrial revolutions of China and Russia were state driven and lifted people out of poverty more effectively than strategies based on wage slavery and attacking workers

                  • Gypsy

                    "But he also recognised that capitalism corrupts democracy and causes widespread suffering & oppression of workers, and financial crashes"

                    Capitalism co-exists with democracy. Capitalism lifts people out of poverty. It is alternatives, socialism most notably, that enslaves people. It is no coincidence that most obvious socialist economies have been accompanied by totalitarian regimes.

                    "BTW the industrial revolutions of China and Russia were state driven and lifted people out of poverty more effectively than strategies based on wage slavery and attacking workers"

                    Russia is proof positive that state commanded economic progress is unsustainable. In both Russia and China, the most progress towards economic freedom and prosperity has come with the adoption of the free market.

                    Remember to, it was Stalin who drove the industrial revolution in Russia. He also just happened to have killed up to 20 million of his fellow citizens (depending upon which historian you believe).

                    • roblogic

                      I wasn't talking about painful political revolutions and bloodshed. But if you want to go down that track, capitalism is responsible for colonisation and mass impoverishment of billions, ongoing slaughters, and the destruction of life itself by insane profit driven policies that rely on destroying rainforests and filling the Earth with oil pollution

                      It is a cancerous ideology that cannot be sustained.

                      Socialism is democracy in action, the clue is in the name. Decisions are made for the good of society not only in the interests of a remote aristocracy

                  • Gypsy

                    "It is a cancerous ideology that cannot be sustained."

                    So you've been arguing. On a forum invented within a free market economic system.

                    "Socialism is democracy in action, the clue is in the name. Decisions are made for the good of society not only in the interests of a remote aristocracy"

                    Tell that to the close to 100m people killed in communist/socialist regimes.

                    • McFlock

                      On a forum invented within a free market economic system.

                      Are you talking about the actual website that was developed in a mixed economy, or the infrastructure and protocols that were developed with US government funding?

                    • roblogic

                      "100m people killed in communist regimes"

                      A silly comment. By the same token I must assume that capitalists support fascist warmongering and mercantile Empires plundering the wealth of nations and genociding the natives

                  • Gypsy

                    "A silly comment. By the same token I must assume that capitalists support fascist warmongering and mercantile Empires plundering the wealth of nations and genociding the natives"

                    You claimed that under socialism "Decisions are made for the good of society…". That's a nonsense claim when you consider the lessons of history. Historians estimate around 100m people lost their lives in those societies.

                    Socialism destroyed the Soviet Union. In 1989, tens of millions of soviet citizens lived in poverty – around 20% of the population. (In 2018 it was 12%).

                    In most socialist regimes, individual freedoms are ruthlessly repressed. Religious and political liberty is stamped out, in fact socialism destroys the human spirit, and in the end that is at the heart of why it fails.

                    • KJT

                      Funny idea of what Socialism is.

                      Meanwhile Democratic Socialist/ Actual Socialist, rather than totalitarian countries that say they are socialist, regimes are our most succesful States to date.

                      Or they were until so many bought into the "free market", low tax, Globalist religion.

                      Even the USA exists courtesy of the largest State funded welfare organisation on earth. Their military. Without that State funded transfer of wealth they would collapse. Which is why they need the constant wars with Eastasia and Westasia.

                    • KJT

                      Srylands? Or yet another Echo!

                      Open mike 04/08/2013 « The Standard

                      "Srylands statement of course comes from the laffer curve idea.
                      That expansion of Government provision of services always displaces the private sector.

                      If that was really the case then you would expect the countries with extremely large State shares in the economy to be the worst off. Which is obviously not the case.

                      Countries with large State investment in the economy are the most successful. Some States manage with no private sector at all. (Not what I would recommend though).
                      Every one from Singapore to Norway, Germany and Denmark.
                      Countries which have high State spending either/or both percentage wise or per capita.
                      How are your low tax, small Government countries doing? Srylands".

                    • KJT

                      If you insist that The Soviet Union was "Socialist" however. Have a look at the proportion living in poverty and their GDP, compared with the UK in 1917? as against the same comparison in 1960?

                      Indeed have a look at the rise in proportion living in poverty in NZ, from the time of your great Neo-liberal “Reforms”..

            • Stuart Munro

              There was no alternative?

              With our wretchedly incompetent treasury wonks that's probably mostly true – one trick ponies on their best days.

              Had they a ghost of a clue about how to do their job however, policies would have been very different – and we'd have recorded growth in excess of real estate inflation occasionally.

              No-one is lining up to hire NZ's 'economic miracle' workers, in fact they're a global joke.

              • Gypsy

                The fundamental changes to the economy in the 1980's prepared our economy for globalisation and competing with the world. It was a significant driver on our shifting trade reliance on the UK.

                No-one is lining up to hire NZ's 'economic miracle' workers, in fact they're a global joke.

                You are quite wrong. Our economy is far from perfect, but for a relatively small economy, the management of our economy by successive governments has been recognised internationally.

                • Stuart Munro

                  And yet our supposed miracle workers never achieve growth over 3% (underlying inflation), much less produce the 'rising tide that lifts all boats' which was the excuse for all their cruel and ineffectual policies.

                  NZ finance ministers are not recruited by the IMF or the World Bank – even with the politics those institutions prefer a plausible veneer of competence – they are lucky if they can get a job at Woolies.

                  It is fair to describe NZ's reigning economists as conservative, backward, myopic, and regressive – and since you seem to be their fanboi, you suffer by association.

                  It is one of life’s little ironies that Muldoon has been redeemed, not by his own miserable efforts, but by the inadequacy of his successors.

                  • Gypsy

                    "NZ finance ministers are not recruited by the IMF or the World Bank"

                    Hardly a robust way of assessing NZ's economic reforms. But as a certain irony, one of the 'fanboi's' of NZ's economic performance is none other than the IMF's Christine Lagarde, Lagarde was the MD of the IMF, and was the Minister of Finance in France.

                    • alwyn

                      She is still going strong.

                      She is currently President of the European Central Bank. Since 2011 she has been in the top 10 of the Forbes Most Powerful Women list. In the last couple of years she has been at number 2, second only to Angela Merkel. That is one impressive lady.

                    • Stuart Munro

                      Hardly a robust way of assessing NZ's economic reforms

                      Oh I agree – the increased wealth of median NZers would be the obvious data point, but of course that's seldom reported – being negative.

                      But this was your shoddy criterion – the views of foreign colleagues:

                      the management of our economy … has been recognised internationally

                      The peers of the Chicago Boys in Chile were reasonably satisfied with them – it was the people they robbed and impoverished that were obliged to put them in prison where they and their Rogergnomic colleagues belong.

                  • Gypsy

                    "Oh I agree…"

                    Yet you used it as your chosen measure.

                    "…the increased wealth of median NZers would be the obvious data point, but of course that's seldom reported – being negative."

                    Why is that the 'obvious data point'? For starters, "data on wealth is far worse than data on income – the Government gathers a lot less data on wealth."

                    However I was able to find this comparison between 2015 and 2018:

                    "Median household wealth increased from $289,000 to $340,000. In 2015, 8.3 percent of Kiwis households had more than $1.5 million in net wealth; in 2018, 12.5 percent of Kiwi households were in that group. Fewer households held between $100,000 and $500,000 in wealth and more households held assets worth over $500,000."

                    So that was a transitionary period over two governments in which median wealth did increase.

                    "…the views of foreign colleagues…"

                    I never mentioned 'colleagues'. I'm referring to informed international critique. Which includes one of the people who fit YOUR criteria of moving from a FM position to employment with the IMF!

                    • Stuart Munro

                      Oh really – "informed international critique is it?"

                      Let's see some then – and it had better be critical, not yet another empty paen to the fallen gods of mammon.

                      You are the fellow trying to justify the epic failure which is Rogergnomics – well, as your neoliberal kin put it:

                      Show us the money!

                      Most expensive electricity in the world
                      Fastest growing inequality in the OECD
                      Most expensive housing relative to income

                      You and your corrupt economist fellow travellers have a truckload of explaining to do – and frankly, we don't want any more excuses – only the improved outcomes they’ve lied about for getting on for four decades now.

                      The time for excuses is over – they are only ever a plea in mitigation – they don't exculpate the fraud that was perpetrated on NZ, that you for some reason are exerting yourself to defend.

                  • Gypsy

                    "Let's see some then…"

                    I gave you one – someone you surely approve of because she is one of your chosen few – FM's who have 'graduated' to employment with the IMF.

                    You make a lot of claims yourself, Stuart. Few, if any, are supported by sources. So let's have a look at your latest claims:

                    "Most expensive electricity in the world"

                    Not even close.

                    "Fastest growing inequality in the OECD"

                    Not according to the OECD.

                    "Most expensive housing relative to income"


                    • roblogic

                      Of course, you can basically eliminate the working class from statistics if you take "averages". The top 10% wealthiest socioeconomic strata owns over 50% of the wealth so yes "kiwis are getting wealthier" might be true in a very stupid and selfish way, but all the gains are going to a tiny elite few.

                      Low income Kiwi households struggling with unaffordable housing, OECD report says | Stuff.co.nz

                    • Stuart Munro

                      You still have fundamentally failed to substantiate your claim, that NZ is better off for the imposition of Rogergnomics.

                      That massive raft of corruption fundamentally pivoted the NZ civil service away from its core functions, to chase spurious crap.

                      So there is more expensive electricity somewhere – big whoop – your clowns still massively increased the price for ours, further emiserating our poor oppressed and cheated citizens.

                      You massively increased inequality – never mind the rest of the world, the lazy unproductive speculator class cleaned up here, massively eroding productivity – and this was the work of supposedly professional economists? For shame!

                      And your property piece is nonsense – fudged by the insertion of a square meterage factor that is neither here nor there. The crucial feature of housing is not its meterage, but that owner occupiers are able to escape rental costs which a landlord class inflate pretty much as and when they chose.

                      Home ownership is lousy in NZ now – you have taken us back to 1951 levels.

                      I guess it's a hard thing for corrupt public servants to understand, but a fundamental baseline is that you are supposed to leave the country better than you found it.

                  • Gypsy

                    "So there is more expensive electricity somewhere – big whoop – "

                    The point is you have made a number of claims in this exchange that are simply false. That's either sloppy of dishonest, and pretty much discredits anything else you say.

                    • KJT

                      Like your claim that Rogernomics "made the majority of New zealanders better off".

                    • Stuart Munro

                      Oh please – lying doesn't concern you at all – you just endorsed Key's lie about ripping off state assets.

                      Besides, menkurt slave of the odious right, you have yet to show us the money – ie validated your dishonest position on Rogergnomics.

                      Show us some proof, my little cabbage, or come clean that you were lying all along.

          • Gypsy

            "You're conveniently ignoring… "

            Nothing. Every one of the things you cite were built as part of the governments investment in a mixed market economy. And paid for out of taxes generated by the private sector.

            • KJT

              They are paid for out of work done, by everyone in society whether public or private.

              Taxes and all Money, are just the way we decide to allocate resources.

              • Gypsy

                "They are paid for out of work done, by everyone in society whether public or private. "

                Yes, public servants pay tax. Your point?

                • KJT

                  Tax is a proportion of the earnings from the work someone does.

                  We allocate a part of our work earnings to pay for Government services.

                  It does not magically appear from private business, out of thin air.

          • Gypsy

            "What's the % of people who voted for successive governments to flog off State assets? "

            A lot, as it happens. In 2011, the Key government went to the election specifically promising asset sales. They received 48% of the votes.

            • KJT

              Over 80% of New Zealanders polled, didn't want the assett sales to go ahead.

              The idea that a Government is elected on just one policy, is rather comic.

              • Gypsy

                "Over 80% of New Zealanders polled, didn't want the assett sales to go ahead."

                We don't elect governments from opinion polls.

                • KJT

                  Yes we don't really have Democracy. Which is a shame.

                  If we did, the “Unfortunate experiment” which you are spruiking for, would have been nipped in the bud in 1993 if not 1987, when the foolishness of it was apparent..

                • Stuart Munro

                  Sooner or later NZ is going to punish a government that lies on that scale.

                  It won't be pretty – but it will be just.

  7. weka 7

    Tricledrown, if you are reading this, here's how to get your commenting privileges back:

    1. reply to this comment.
    2. next time you open a TS page, look at the Replies tab in the right hand side (on a computer), and you will see a reply from me.
    3. reply to my comment.
    4. Do this each time you come to TS.

    If you can do this, I will then talk you how to get your commenting privileges back.

    Mods have spent a lot of time this year trying to get you to respond to moderation comments. The reason you can't comment at the moment is because you failed to respond in June and I got sick of chasing it up.

    • Tricledrown 7.1

      Ok Weka no problem I couldn’t reply because the box to type in comment wouldn’t open.

      • weka 7.1.1

        Hi Td. There's a long history of problems with your commenting. There are two to look at right now.

        1. you don't use the Reply list, so when we moderate you are missing our messages. The first thing I need to know is if you understand how to use it. Please reply to this comment and let me know. If you don't know how to use it, that's ok, I can tell you, but I need to know if you do or don't.
        2. please look at this comment https://thestandard.org.nz/open-mike-31-08-2021/#comment-1812844 and see how there is a typo in the user name. This means the system treats you as a new user and holds back your comment for approval by a mod. This creates work for the mods. It has been explained to you many times. Please reply to this comment tell me what device you are using. I will try and help you figure out what is going wrong.
        • Tricledrown

          I f 'd up again I have serious disabilities with impaired eyesight and have only barely one finger on my typing hand 1 finger on the other so it's very hard to get things right all the time.

          • weka

            Thanks for letting me Td, we can work with that.

            Can you please let me know if you can see the Replies tab on the upper right hand side of the page?

  8. Cricklewood 8

    Starting to look like Trudeau miscalculated calling a snap election. Not that suprising really I'm sure voters aren't that impressed given they're in the midst of their 4th wave and it looks very much like it was called because polls had his party thinking they would get a majority.

  9. weka 9

    Can someone please do me a favour. Reply to this comment, and I will put the comment in trash and see if I can bring it back again.

  10. Andre 10

    In 'murica, they get thousands turning up to storm the halls of government.

    Here in Nu Zillun we get one Karen outside the council office in Kaikohe.

    The "passionless people" indeed!


  11. georgecom 11

    This covid lockup has had to be the most tedious yet, longer mentally than any of the others to date. The 'novel' corona virus is proving anything but, 'tedious and tiresome' corona virus I am finding. I wondered about how we might shape the present and future covid responses. Auckland has carried much of the burden on lock downs, far more than any other region. They have the majority of MIQ facilities and have been hardest hit in the 3 lockdowns post the big one last year.

    For that matter I wondered when Auckland is under level 4 or 3, and a level higher than other provinces, whether it's fair to add an extra 1% gst to transactions in other provinces that could be funneled to Auckland businesses to help pay rents and wages until such time they dropped to level 2. So when there are unequal level 4 and 3 lockdowns imposed regionally, the regions at a higher alert level receive some form of relief payments. Funded by a 1% in GST in regions at a lower alert level, eg level 2. The regions that can return to some semblance of normality provide economic relief for the hardest hit areas.

    In terms of any purpose built or purpose adapted future MIQ facilities. Seems to me time some other provinces did some of that heavy lifting. Maybe time to locate dedicated facilities in Dunedin or Christchurch or Palmerston North. The Central and Southern regions can have a turn doing the work. Palmy seems a reasonable option. A military airport that can take large jets and a reasonably sized city with health facilities.

    • roblogic 11.1

      I am more miserable than I have been in years. Solitary confinement & isolation are psychological torture. L4 is some OTT bullshit. I feel for those who are dying alone because of these inhumane conditions

      • McFlock 11.1.1

        Yeah, it's tough. You got someone to talk to over phone or video? It's not the same as face to face, but at least you get to use your voice.

        • roblogic

          Yeah just got off a Zoom call thanks. Feeling a bit better. Life is really out of balance right now

          • McFlock


          • mac1

            Stay in there, Roblogic. Thanks for your kind words the other day. Poetry and music, playing the blues, help when the black dog starts barking. Just been reading some of my verse, written when going through treatment for cancer.

            One sonnet, written as I travelled to Picton on my way to resume radiation therapy for prostate cancer ends.

            "Sorrow is for the present, /waiting to proceed from known past/ to a future not yet seen or sensed.

            Present sorrow, prescient pain, / Fear is human of unknown gain.

    • McFlock 11.2

      Definitely agree about spreading things out – especially away from urban concentrations.

      Find a nice picturesque area, and build a 500+ room facility with decent airflow control and the ability to separate cohorts. Do spa areas, tennis courts, gyms, all that shit. Have it store medical supplies like PPE. Run it as a hotel with close access to skifields etc, and use it as a quarantine or evacuation facility if we need one. Heck, it might even make money as a hotel.

    • Gabby 11.3

      It feels more tedious because of the unremmitting drumbeat of whinging about it. I quite like it.

  12. Pataua4life 12

    Just thought I would check

    Warkworth to Hamilton 178.3km

    Warkworth to Kiataia 253km

    • Molly 12.1

      Most people living near a big city travel in and bounce back on the same trajectory.

      Travelling through Auckland is a small percentage. Met people at Akld hospital that travelled from Whangarei for treatment. Auckland serves Northland in many ways still.

  13. Gypsy 13

    "Can you demonstrate another nation with a median house price to median income ratio in excess of 20?"

    That measure is valid, but it does have the problem of not including changes in interest rates. I have looked and can't find any long term comparisons based on median measure, which is surprising considering I would have thought it was a meaningful measure.

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