Open mike 31/05/2016

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, May 31st, 2016 - 89 comments
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89 comments on “Open mike 31/05/2016”

  1. Paul 1

    Another day in John Key’s neo-liberal nightmare.
    We have become a cruel, ugly and selfish nation under his wretched leadership.
    Lucky we have a marae that cares……..

    ‘Social agencies desperate to help their clients have joined the queues of people turning up at a south Auckland marae that opened its doors to the homeless.’

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/te-manu-korihi/305224/social-workers-go-to-marae-for-help

    • Paul 1.1

      Another day in John Key’s neo-liberal nightmare.
      We have become a cruel, ugly and selfish nation under his wretched leadership.

      ‘Housing New Zealand is evicting several tenants in Hamilton, just as Aucklanders are being offered $5000 to move into state homes there and in other provincial cities.
      Angela Eastham, 49, who faces eviction this Friday, has multiple sclerosis and cares for a 21-year-old son with a brain injury and a 23-year-old autistic daughter.
      Another family with four school-aged children faces eviction within 48 hours if Housing NZ wins a Tenancy Tribunal case this Thursday. The evictions come just days after Social Housing Minister Paula Bennett announced a scheme to pay up to $5000 for Aucklanders seeking social housing to move to the provinces from June 20.
      She said Hamilton, Huntly, Ngaruawahia, Whanganui and Gisborne all had vacant state houses available.’

      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11647724

      • TC 1.1.1

        Nat led HCC recently flogged their rental housing….join the dots folks.

      • greywarshark 1.1.2

        Musical chairs game by Paula Bennett. Unfortunately the wording is too true, Someone from Paula Bennett’s department announced that they will be offering the option of chairs placed near a public toilet and shower block for people evicted from houses. Some will even have sunlounges offering a shade for protection from the weather.

        The comment from Bill English was that the National government is cognisant of the difficulties which some people are experiencing, and does not want to see them having to sleep in the streets and under bridges with no amenities.
        /sarc

      • greywarshark 1.1.3

        https://www.facebook.com/Te-Puea-Memorial-Marae-Manaaki-Tangata-1622950467990826/timeline

        This is the Auckland marae that has acted to assist with emergency housing.
        All those people so angry about the homeless situation could have a look to see what they can do in the interim to help until we can get real NZ politicians into Parliament instead of these marathon competitors in the Hunger Games.

        • greywarshark 1.1.3.1

          If someone connected with the marae could start a GiveaLittle page for them, it would ease the burden on them to have some money as they are going to be run off their feet and putting so much time and resources into it that their own lives and families will suffer. They need help at Te Puea Memorial Marae. Can someone who knows them help them to do so, I think they would be accepted without difficulty. And while it is in the news, and people have it at the top of their minds, I think would be the most effective time to do it.

      • Reddelusion 1.1.4

        Meanwhile NZ the Neo liberal paradise has been rated the 4th most prosperous country in the world across the balance of 89 variables by the Legatum Institute global annual survey, 1 ahead of the left poster child Sweden.

        News flash Paul having palpitation as he searches for new daily header to reflect reality

        • Paul 1.1.4.1

          Legatum Institum is a think tank of the neoliberal cult.
          Of course it likes New Zealand.

          • Reddelusion 1.1.4.1.1

            Why are Nordic countries rated so highly then, with nz, thus all very similar over 89 variables, are not the Nordic countries the poster child’s for social democracy Thus nz can hardly be a neo liberal nightmare and they not

  2. Paul 2

    Over a third of coral is dead in parts of the Great Barrier Reef, scientists say

    ‘We knew this was coming.

    For months, coral reef experts have been loudly, and sometimes mournfully, announcing that much of the treasured Great Barrier Reef has been hit by “severe” coral bleaching, thanks to abnormally warm ocean waters.
    Bleaching, though, isn’t the same as coral death. When symbiotic algae leave corals’ bodies and the animals then turn white or “bleach,” they can still bounce back if environmental conditions improve. The Great Barrier Reef has seen major bleaching in some of its sectors — particularly the more isolated northern reef — and the expectation has long been that this event would result in significant coral death, as well.
    Now some of the first figures confirming that are coming in. Diving and aerial surveys of 84 reefs by scientists with the ARC Center of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies at James Cook University in Australia — the same researchers who recently documented at least some bleaching at 93 percent of individual reefs — have found that a striking 35 percent of corals have died in the northern and central sectors of the reef.’

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/energy-environment/wp/2016/05/29/a-whole-new-ballgame-scientists-find-35-percent-coral-death-in-parts-of-great-barrier-reef/

  3. vto 3

    To repeat…. because it needs repeating every night people repeat sleeping outside.

    No wonder we don’t have enough houses to house the vulnerable… this government has sold them for fucks sake …… and let a couple hundred thousand more people into the country as well …

    what the fuck did John Key expect?

    What a complete dumbarse dope

    . . . .

    unless it was intentional ….. so that house prices would be driven high and the incumbent re-elected…. in that case it makes John Key a ……. traitor ……. amongst more and worse …..

    . . . .

    this entire situation is abominable and Key and his National Party members and supporters truly astounding.

    Fuck the National Party

    • AsleepWhileWalking 3.2

      I’m guessing migrants tend to vote National too.

    • Draco T Bastard 3.3

      what the fuck did John Key expect?

      Rising house prices which leads to increasing mortgages that feed in to the economy to produce a rising GDP and thus he, and National, would be able to proclaim a growing economy.

      The reality is that a few people are getting richer on paper while the real economy collapses beneath them.

    • Redelusion 4.1

      happy I am living rent free in your head Paul, saying that it is very drafty in here, plenty of vacant space 😀

      • Paul 4.1.1

        Keep the tinted windows down.
        Lock up your gated community.

        • Reddelusion 4.1.1.1

          Your repeating yourself Paul ( you have used tinted windows) simply saying the same rubbish moronically day after day does not make it so

    • Draco T Bastard 5.1

      You know, the ‘free-market’ is supposed to eliminate waste. So far, though, all I’ve seen is increasing amounts of it.

  4. Red Fred 6

    Some of us are deceived and distracted by the daily struggles of living in our current zeitgeist. It doesn’t have to be this way.

    Sorry for the dead Gorrilla, but at least it distracts from Syrian children drowning in the Club Med Sea.

    • vto 6.1

      I reckon if someone had gone up to the cage (like the child’s mother) and asked, then the gorilla would have simply given the boy back …………..

      we eternally under-estimate the non-human kingdom inhabitants..

      • greywarshark 6.1.1

        What if gorillas are a dying species and really precious to the earth. And we are fecund and destructive and harming other species. Perhaps we should shoot the boy, and his parents who are less alert than meerkats, and not as concerned in looking after their young as spiders.

        Now it’s hard to be objective isn’t it.

        • McFlock 6.1.1.1

          Not all that hard. Somewhere around the “shoot the boy” and parent-blaming, your comment got routed through the “low probability of valuable content” filter and thereby avoided serious consideration 🙂

          • greywarshark 6.1.1.1.1

            But but the reasoning is all factual. But the low probability of value content attention applies to anything really serious on blogs these days, hardly anyone can run their minds off the old familiar rails and gaze at a different landscape. they might encounter themselves. They don’t want to face that, and turn instead to the small and large brutalities on television, say Game of Thrones.

            • McFlock 6.1.1.1.1.1

              Hey, look, gorillas are one of the few non-human life-forms that approach my pet test for a sentience level we have a duty to preserve, which is “can they write a story about what they did on their summer holiday”.

              But the fact is that an agitated gorilla can easily kill a kid by accident, even if it actually means to protect the sprog. And no parent is perfect at stopping their sprog doing something silly. Let’s say the gorilla was a human being who you couldn’t talk to for whatever reason, was growing agitated and was dragging a kid around by his ankle? Yeah, I wouldn’t judge a cop who shot the adult, or one who didn’t. It’s a shitty call to have to make, but sometimes there’s no winning move where everybody walks away unharmed.

    • McFlock 6.2

      “Distraction” is the wrong word, I think. It implies that people would watch and care about continued stories on Syrian refugees.

      Many would just switch over to something else. It’s the difference between “hey, look over here, don’t look over there!” and “Bored now. What else will I look at?”

    • mauī 6.3

      We’re guilty of shooting first ask questions later too. Build motorways, imprison poachers, pollute rivers, etc etc.

  5. whispering kate 7

    What has happened to the stunning news that Hilary Clinton/Clinton Foundation quite possibly will be indicted on Racketeering charges, it was breaking news yesterday and the FBI have said if the charges do not go ahead they will release their findings publicly anyway. Why aren’t our MSM all over this, even for just headline purposes, its not like they aren’t in the business of trying to break news. This will change completely the face of the upcoming presidential elections. It seems this is being swept under the carpet.

    http://www.globalresearch.ca/

    Another event which was swept under the carpet is the under/overpaying of accommodation supplement payments by our own government, and discovering it too close to an upcoming election and choosing to sweep it under the carpet. Is this becoming a common practice among our people in power?

  6. TC 8

    Distraction update;

    Gooners trougher sidekick mrs soper has been slagging off ngarawhaia and giving the waikato times an excuse to front page a nothing story.

    • Roflcopter 8.1

      If you really cared, instead of looking for an excuse for a bleat, you would have spelt Ngāruawāhia properly.

  7. Chooky 9

    To counter RNZ cold war propaganda interview against Russia below (remember NATO destroyed Libya):

    ‘Top brass warns NATO on course for war with Russia’

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/ninetonoon/audio/201802711/top-brass-warns-nato-on-course-for-war-with-russia

    “General Sir Richard Shirreff is a high ranking retired British military General. He warns that nuclear war with Russia could happen within a year, if NATO doesn’t beef up its defence presence in the Baltic states.”

    …and the contrary view to give some balance:

    ‘Who’s aggressive?’

    https://www.rt.com/shows/crosstalk/344555-russia-conflict-war-benefits/

    “Who is being aggressive? For the past few years the drumbeat for a conflict with Russia has been building almost to the point of hysteria. Now there is talk of a war – including a nuclear war – that could destroy civilization. On this edition of CrossTalk we ask who benefits from such dangerous talk.

    CrossTalking with John Laughland, Nebojsa Malic, and Hall Gardner.”

    ‘Chomsky to RT: US and its NATO intervention force may spark nuclear war’

    https://www.rt.com/news/203055-us-russia-war-chomsky/

    ‘Chomsky: NATO is a U.S.-run intervention force’

    https://www.rt.com/shows/sophieco/202967-cold-nuclear-war-nato/

    • ‘Who’s aggressive?’

      Gee, that’s a tough question, but my money’s on the one that invaded its neighbour’s territory and thereby made its other neighbours shit themselves. That seems pretty aggressive. Maybe if the fear of being forcibly absorbed into a Russian empire hadn’t been proved justified quite so often for these neighbours, they wouldn’t be clamouring for NATO protection in the wake of this latest instance – but what would I know?

      • One Two 9.1.1

        You know nothing, as you pointed out!

        • Psycho Milt 9.1.1.1

          That’s a pretty compelling argument you make there, One Two, but, comprehensive though it is, there are nevertheless a few things you could clarify for me:
          1. Did the Russian Federation not annex Crimea and I just imagined it?
          2. Russian military not fighting the Ukrainian military inside Ukraine, then?
          3. Poland and the Baltic republics actually not keen for NATO to protect them from similar antics and just faking their concern, maybe?
          4. Poland and the Baltics lack previous experience of being forcibly absorbed into a Russian empire and all the historians are wrong?

          • Chooky 9.1.1.1.1

            ‘Czech veteran moons US convoy in anti-Nato protest (VIDEO)’

            https://www.rt.com/news/344863-czech-veteran-moons-usarmy/

            “A Czech veteran opposed to the “aggressive missions” of the US in Europe has decided to take a stand against the major drills across central and Eastern Europe by launching a semi-naked protest.

            Martin Zapletal, a member of a group of Czech and Slovakian soldiers opposed to Nato, described the US soldiers as “aggressors, killers and occupiers” as Dragoon Ride II paraded through the country over the weekend…

          • Colonial Viper 9.1.1.1.2

            1. Did the Russian Federation not annex Crimea and I just imagined it?

            ANSW: Over 80% of the residents of Crimea, including the Tartars, voted to return to Russia.

            Further, you gotta be dreaming if you think that Russia was about to let Sevastapol turn into a NATO base.

            2. Russian military not fighting the Ukrainian military inside Ukraine, then?

            ANSW:

            Russian regular troops who asked were given leave from their units to fight a Ukraniain military that was attacking civilian towns and apartment blocks, in Eastern Ukraine, yes.

            3. Poland and the Baltic republics actually not keen for NATO to protect them from similar antics and just faking their concern, maybe?

            ANSW: NATO cannot protect these countries. The Baltic states in particular are totally indefensible. Further NATO is supposed to increase the security of its members – instead its actions moving armed forces right to Russia’s borders reduce the security of its member states.

            Romania, due to the presence of the new US ABM system, has now made itself a strategic target in Russian military contingency plans.

            4. Poland and the Baltics lack previous experience of being forcibly absorbed into a Russian empire and all the historians are wrong?

            ANSW: Maybe you should remember your history. The Germans killed approx 27M Soviet citizens. That’s why the Soviet Union occupied those countries, as a buffer zone against future European aggression. Which is what Russia is facing right now.

            Speaking of history, maybe you should also remember how France tried to sack Moscow under Napolean. European aggression against Russia has been the norm in history, not the other way around.

            • Chooky 9.1.1.1.2.1

              +100…well said CV

              • Colonial Viper

                Over the last 70 years Washington DC has gotten used to run affairs in foreign nations 10,000km from its own borders.

                But it will not allow Russia or China to run affairs even 1,000km from their own borders.

            • Psycho Milt 9.1.1.1.2.2

              1. So, no I’m not imagining it.
              2. So, yes Russia does have its military fighting Ukrainians in Ukraine.
              3. Whether NATO will actually be able to protect those countries or not is irrelevant to the fact that they want somebody to protect them.
              4. The people living in those countries find Soviet propaganda less credible than you do, obviously. I’ll take their word for it over yours any day. Also: these countries’ experience of Russian imperialism goes back way before Soviet times. They know their history a little better than you do.

              • Colonial Viper

                You’re a fool if you believe the mood of the ordinary people on the streets of Riga and Vilnius is the same as the bought by USD political elite of those countries.

                BTW people in the former eastern bloc countries have massively sensitive propaganda BS detectors because of their Warsaw Pact experience. Whereas us in the west, we’re stupid enough to believe that we’re not being propagandised so we don’t tend to look out for it.

                Which is odd, because on The Standard, the theme of a highly biased pro-establishment narrative mass media, is taken for granted.

                • Been out doing vox pops, have you? Everything I’ve seen suggests no love for the Soviets and their modern counterparts in Poland or the Baltic republics. And they do indeed have powerful bullshit detectors, which is exactly why they don’t trust Putin and are looking to the defence of their countries.

                  But it will not allow Russia or China to run affairs even 1,000km from their own borders.

                  Your conspiracy theory that the Americans are “running affairs” in eastern Europe is merely comical; your belief that Russia and China have some kind of right to imperial power not comical at all.

            • greywarshark 9.1.1.1.2.3

              Thats neatly countered Colonial Viper. You have been following your history.
              Did you study it at uni or is it an interest of yours?

              It certainly is important to look beyond the facile arguments that the RW come up with. Do you really know your stuff so well that it is 99% right?

              • Colonial Viper

                Thats neatly countered Colonial Viper. You have been following your history.
                Did you study it at uni or is it an interest of yours?

                Our entire political team down here in Dunedin has an interest in history. You need to know some history or else contemporary politics becomes meaningless without context.

                My interest is informal; I never studied history at university (my background is engineering and technical).

                It certainly is important to look beyond the facile arguments that the RW come up with. Do you really know your stuff so well that it is 99% right?

                I am convinced that the guts of it is right – minimum 85% to 90% right. Mostly it is just relaying things that the western style of propaganda (= propaganda by omission).

                I like to read and listen to pieces by journalists and experts like Pilger, Hedges, Cohen, Wilkerson, Leveretts. These people are not pro-Russian, but they are definitely pro-reality.

                • greywarshark

                  Thanks for that CV. I have paid attention to your thoughts which seemed far seeing. So good to know the provenance!

                  • It certainly is important to look beyond the facile arguments that the RW come up with.

                    Then try doing it. You’re fawning over someone who’s an apologist for a very ugly right-wing nationalist authoritarian regime in Russia.

                    • Chooky

                      actually I would have thought this description applied to you …

                      ” someone who’s an apologist for a very ugly right-wing nationalist authoritarian regime”

                      ‘NATO masses troops along Russian border, war becomes possible scenario – peace movement leader’

                      https://www.rt.com/shows/sophieco/344551-nato-planes-montenegro-conflict/

                    • NATO masses troops along Russian border…

                      Sigh. Germany putting 150 divisions there was “massing troops along the Russian border.” NATO having one armoured brigade rotate between six of Russia’s neighbours and maintaining around four divisions nowhere near Russia as a ready-reaction force, on the other hand, is not. You should spend less time on Russian propaganda sites, it’s leading you to present delusional fantasies as though they were facts.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Then try doing it. You’re fawning over someone who’s an apologist for a very ugly right-wing nationalist authoritarian regime in Russia.

                      Again, you are wrong here PM. Putin is a democratically elected and very centrist leader in Russia, and he is extremely popular for it, with personal approval ratings in the low to mid 80% range.

                      Try and find me a western leader with approval ratings anywhere near that figure. John Key was in the 60% range for a while, I guess.

                      And if you were at all genuinely concerned about “ugly right wing nationalist authoritarian regimes” you would be kicking the shit out of the government in Kiev, and their Stepan Bandera inspired paramilitary supporters, who have been using heavy weapons and terror tactics against their own citizens in eastern Ukraine for the last 3 years.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Sigh. Germany putting 150 divisions there was “massing troops along the Russian border.” NATO having one armoured brigade rotate between six of Russia’s neighbours and maintaining around four divisions nowhere near Russia as a ready-reaction force, on the other hand, is not.

                      Correct.

                      That singly NATO armoured brigade, I presume it is up to 2000 combat troops plus support personnel, has an effective fighting time span in a serious scrap with the Russians of under 12 hours. Being generous there. It’ll probably be 180 minutes or so.

                      The real threat to Russia is from the Romanian based US ABM system which uses interceptor missiles which can be nuclear tipped, and no one would ever know the difference. Not even the Romanians at the base. (Putin specifically mentioned this in a speech a couple of days ago).

                      That’s the real strategically destabilising factor that NATO has put on Russia’s door step.

                      NATO is supposed to make the environment more secure for its members; in fact it is doing exactly the opposite.

                    • Putin is a democratically elected and very centrist leader in Russia…

                      So is Assad in Syria, according to you and Chooky.

                      …and he is extremely popular for it…

                      So was Hitler. These things in themselves mean little. Putin is in fact running a kleptocracy with no democratic or media oversight, in which nationalist authoritarianism is the dominant political approach and collaboration with the official Church hierarchy to promote order, obedience and conservative values is the dominant ideological approach. In political terms, he has more in common with General Franco than with any leaders of western democracies.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      So was Hitler. These things in themselves mean little. Putin is in fact running a kleptocracy with no democratic or media oversight

                      Putin is an extremely popular leader – more popular than even our John Key – and United Russia won their internationally monitored elections fair and square.

                      And bear in mind that most of the Russians who do not support Putin…are people who think that he isn’t hard line enough and that he isn’t Communist enough.

                      Yes Putin is running a system where billionaire oligarchs have a lot of say in what happens in Russia…but sorry mate so does every western FVEY nation.

                      As for media oversight – you clearly have no idea. There is a strong Atlanticist leaning private sector mass media in Russia, both TV and in print.

                      And my understanding is that newspapers like the New York Times and the Washington Post are available on line in Russia, translated into Russian on the same day.

                      Bottom line is that the Russians do some pretty shite underhanded things for $$$, and their mid and local levels of government are often corrupt and utterly inefficient, but guess what, every country has shit that it needs to deal with.

                  • Chooky

                    +100 greywarshark

  8. joe90 10

    Coal, lots and lots of coal.
    /

    A brief respite came Thursday — the day he cleared the number of delegates needed to be the nominee — when Trump gave his only scripted speech of the week at an energy conference in Bismarck, N.D. Standing between two teleprompters, Trump seemed to find his confidence not only as a winner but as the Republican nominee that many want him to be. Trump argued that returning to more use of coal and lifting environmental regulations are keys to making the nation wealthy again.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/even-in-victory-donald-trump-cant-stop-airing-his-grievances/2016/05/29/a5f7a566-2526-11e6-8690-f14ca9de2972_story.html

    • Rodel 10.1

      Rumour.. McDonald Trump will announce either Glenn Beck or Ronald Mcdonald as his running mate.
      (To paraphrase Obama..”For Fox News people..that’s a Joke.”)

  9. Bill 11

    Watched some TV the other night for the first time in a long time, and…

    …why anti-smoking ads (presumably) on the grounds its effects will afflict others, and why no high alcohol content ads on the grounds (presumably) that spirits won’t be doing you any favours (unlike ‘lolly water’ apparently) and yet – buy a car, a SUV, a 4WD or a whatever and fly to Australia or wherever for only $149 or whatever because carbon’s fine and global warming’s a big fat nothing, or maybe, if it’s not, we got it covered…(?)

    …while 1000 homes in Auckland blank out off the back of some fairly normal wind and rain – again.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/auckland/80503311/strong-winds-down-trees-cut-power-to-auckland-homes

    Words failing…

  10. John Key knows money is created out of thin air. He has done it for 20 years and is still at it! Here is how it’s done.

  11. greywarshark 13

    Chris Trotter did a piece on Labour, as he often does, taking the pulse, looking for rashes, and checking the health of eyes, ears, and throat, all important features in a capable and active politician.

    These, interesting paragraphs –
    A genuinely “broad church” party of the Left would balance off Andrew Little with Hone Harawira, Jacinda Ardern with Laila Harré, Stuart Nash with John Minto, Kelvin Davis with Annette Sykes, Grant Robertson with Julie Anne Genter and Annette King with Metira Turei. The whole spectrum of alternative power: from Soft Centrists to Hard Leftists; would be covered.

    That Labour’s fatal apostasy [the abandonment or renunciation of a religious or political belief or principle] has made such a caucus impossible is the besetting tragedy of progressive New Zealand politics. Its embrace of neoliberalism in the mid-1980s left Labour with the political equivalent of syphilis. Sadly, every one of the many attempts to administer the Penicillin of genuine progressivism (God bless you Jim, Rod, Laila!) was rejected. Consequently, Labour’s bones have crumbled and its brain has rotted. Small wonder that the other opposition parties are reluctant to get too close!
    https://bowalleyroad.blogspot.co.nz/2016/05/an-opposition-worthy-of-name.html

    This coming year has got to sort out the sheep from the goats. We have to draw on the principles and the name of Savage and be resolute. This is the time of the Hunger Games, not the Disabled Games where if a competitor stumbles the others turn round to give aid in a spirit of friendly competition. The neo liberals won’t stop until they advance their theory and prove that it works, or doesn’t, and whoever gets hurt in the process will be considered to be not of the right stuff. Try looking at Cold Lazarus by Dennis Potter. Some will probably be on Youtube.

    We have people against us who are ruthless, and prepared to divide off society into us and them, who will repeat the Highland Clearings on a huge scale, or who may start a crisis ending in war so they can repeat the Nasti experiment.

    One of the most terrifying things of that was that it could happen at all, arising from a civilised country with great philosophers. Our minds are so plastic that they can adapt to any thought and rationalise it.
    edited

  12. The Chairman 14

    New Zealand’s leading Maori tobacco researcher says National’s tobacco tax increases racist?

    http://m.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11647467

    And Labour welcomed this?

    Isn’t that a kick in the face for the strong support Maori gave Labour at the last election?

    Thoughts?

    • s y d 14.1

      It’s a good point raised.

      If increasing taxes has no discernible effect on reducing smoking rates, then why keep doing it?

      It seems that the diminishing returns have basically fallen to zero, so the reason for increasing the tax isn’t about reducing smoking. Is it down to:
      A. racism?
      B. another hit on the punishment pinata of poor life choices/bene bashing?
      C. milking addicts for cash (Tax Cuts anyone)?
      D. being seen to be doing something, cos if it worked before, it’ll work forever??
      E. Tariana & the Maori Party wanted it?

      I don’t know, but based on the research presented it seems suspect.

      • Psycho Milt 14.1.1

        Mostly C, to a lesser extent E. I presume Labour supports it because it intends doing quite a bit of C when it’s the government again.

        • The Chairman 14.1.1.1

          Didn’t King suggest the possibility of Labour doing that (further tax increases on tobacco) the other day?

          • Psycho Milt 14.1.1.1.1

            I didn’t see it, but wouldn’t be surprised. After all, the current government’s already made cigarettes worth robbing a dairy for, so it’s not like Labour bunging another tenner on the price would make things worse – might as well rake in the cash.

            For extra points, King could spend the additional money collected on a commission of enquiry into why poor people don’t have any cash.

          • Colonial Viper 14.1.1.1.2

            we are going to tax you for your own well being

            • The Chairman 14.1.1.1.2.1

              Dairy owners are very concerned about their well being.

              Will Labour use the extra tax intake to also increase the police budget?

              Corrections will also require more.

      • greywarshark 14.1.2

        Good points. A bit of analysis applied to the no tobacco meme can go a long way. Perhaps try another path.

      • McFlock 14.1.3

        What psycho milt said, but also a bit of D.

        Back when you could buy individual cigarettes and they were only 900% excise tax by weight, an increase in tax would result in a reduction in use (initially in number of cigarettes/day, but then reduction in weight per rollie).

        But the law of diminishing returns means that the effects are no longer as obvious. I’d also be intrigued if there’s any research as to the size of the tobacco black market – it grows just as capably as dope in NZ.

  13. save nz 15

    http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/may/30/ttip-trade-deal-agreements-ceta-eu-canada

    The G7’s problems show that many of us have recognised that trade deals have made the world a playground for the super-rich – they are part of our staggeringly unequal economy. But the G7 is unable to think beyond the interests of the world’s elite. It’s up to us to reclaim our democracy as citizens, and the movements against TTIP and Ceta are the frontline.

  14. ianmac 16

    Eight year freeze to funding of Radio NZ.
    Maori TV get 4 million boost.
    He who pays the piper….

    • greywarshark 16.1

      What? Frozen? In 2014 this was the news:
      RNZ in ‘decent shape’ despite funds freeze | Stuff.co.nz
      http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/…/RNZ-in-decent-shape-despite-funds-freeze
      May 8, 2014 – Despite suffering frozen funds for the past six years, RNZ chief executive Paul … RNZ chairman Richard Griffin said financial constraints meant the broadcaster …
      RNZ had about 500,000 regular listeners but wanted to double that in 10 years.
      Forty per cent of RNZ’s listeners were older than 65, and mostly Pakeha.

      30 May 2016
      More ice for Radio NZ in Budget « LiveNews.co.nz
      livenews.co.nz/2016/05/30/more-ice-for-radio-nz-in-budget/
      1 day ago – Budget 2016 once again left our only public broadcaster, Radio NZ (RNZ), worse off. After eight years of funding freezes, you have to wonder if RNZ is being … The Government, however, has frozen RNZ’s budget at 2008 levels, which means … The current National-led Government may be actively de-prioritising its role, but …

      Comment – from Geoff Simmons economist for Morgan Foundation on NBR (originally on Gareths World.) ‘Pass the parcel on’ >… and
      (Tune into NBR Radio’s Sunday Business with Andrew Patterson on Sunday morning, for analysis and feature-length interviews.)
      The budget freeze on Radio NZ continues, the clear decline in public interest journalism elsewhere. It must be time for a rethink of this sector.
      Meanwhile, there is almost $500m extra for defence and intelligence. Priorities…

  15. ianmac 17

    Tim Watkin leaving as Producer of TV3 The Nation, joining RNZ.

  16. weston 18

    apparently the govt calling for public submissions for what should be printed on plain packaged tobacco lol does this mean us smokers are gonna be treated to reading hate messages from all the health snobs out there ?…such as die you bastards how dare you try an take the easy way out when we all have to live forever !!You gotta laugh by calling for submissions they make the whole process sound like its democracy in action rather than a fascist subjugation of the rights of 500 thousand newzealanders !! you gotta laugh when prob at least a third of the population is on a form of happy pill acceptable because youre local quack dispenses it and while rot gut fizzy drink is peddled in enormous quantities to the poorest members of our society at a cheaper than cheap price and the consumtion of this muck despite health officials repeatedly stating the very serious connection to obesity not a word is said against it .It just shows the power of lobbyists ie the maori party ash etc and the short sighted righteousness of the health snob.

  17. greywarshark 19

    We can afford another embassy in South America. The one in Colombia will cost some tens of millions over two years, and give us about five down there.

    I remember the touching scene when David Lange returned to the one in India closed down by the cheese parers, and the previous caretaker was still in a little hut keeping guard waiting for our return.

    Now we are adding Colombia to our set though we only do some tens of millions of trade with them each year. I hope the trade will match the cost. Or perhaps the USA sees it as a strategic point in their fight against drugs and General Mayhem (or one of the Generals somewhere), They might have said to us you are a good little ally and you can open an embassy and keep us covered on events through 5Eyes. Heres something towards the cost.

    • Colonial Viper 19.1

      Colombia is a colony of the USA, don’t know why we would need extra representation there.

      Unless it’s a cover for a FVEY base of operations.

  18. Chooky 20

    Praise for Thatcher from an unusual source

    ‘Varoufakis: Thatcher’s criticism of ECB was sophisticated, pertinent’

    https://www.rt.com/uk/344964-varoufakis-thatcher-praise-ecb/

    “Marxist economist and game theorist Yanis Varoufakis confided in crowds gathered at a Welsh arts festival on Monday that he has some admiration for the late ex-Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, despite largely viewing her legacy as damaging…

    He had been invited to discuss the origins of the eurozone crisis, the relentless Troika (European Central Bank-International Monetary Fund-European Commission) austerity that followed, and a potential path ahead for Europe and Greece.

    Reflecting on commentary Thatcher once gave on the European Central Bank (ECB), he said it was the “most pertinent” ever made.

    “It was a very nuanced and sophisticated criticism – who controls interest rates in Europe controls the politics of Europe, and that money cannot be depoliticized,” he added…

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