Open mike 31/12/2015

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, December 31st, 2015 - 152 comments
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152 comments on “Open mike 31/12/2015”

  1. Kay 1

    “Dame” Paula Rebstock.

      • Kay 1.1.1

        For” Services to the State.” Said Rebstock has serviced the Nats, not the State.

      • Draco T Bastard 1.1.2

        The Order of New Zealand (ONZ)

        To be Member of the said Order:

        Mr Richard Hugh McCaw – For services to New Zealand

        He hasn’t actually done anything for NZ.

        • alwyn

          Yes, awarding anything to this man McCaw is a total disgrace.
          These people are supposed to be the twenty most eminent New Zealanders aren’t they?

          This honour should be reserved for such wonderful servants of the public as that erstwhile Minister of wine and cheese, that truly great New Zealander Jonathon Hunt. He is really someone to bow down to isn’t he?
          Does anyone know what secrets he knew about the then Prime Minister that Hunt could blackmail her into giving him anything except a DCM?
          Somehow when I see JH in the list I think McCaw is a much more worthy figure.

          By the way can anyone tell me what a Dr Cliff Whiting who appears on the list has ever done? I’ve never heard of him.

          • Andre

            Go to, type in “Cliff Whiting” and press “enter” or click on the magnifying glass symbol.

            All will be revealed.

            You’re welcome.

            • Grant


            • alwyn

              I really should have put “I’d never heard of him” rather than “I’ve never heard of him”.
              I got the list out of Wikipedia and did click on the entry for his name, so I got what you suggest.
              It looked awfully thin in achievements for someone supposed to be in the 20 greatest living New Zealanders though.

              • McFlock


                If I’ve achieved half as much for my community by the age of 80, that would be an exemplary life well lived. Which seems to be the point of ONZ.

                • alwyn

                  Of course it would be. I don’t suppose you are going to do it though. You, like me and many others, spend far to much time commenting on sites like this.
                  On the other hand do you think that his activities put him in the top twenty living New Zealanders?

                  • McFlock

                    lol maybe it’s the commenting, maybe that’s an excuse.

                    As for whether I think Whiting is in the top 20? By the sound of it he’d be a major contender. Consider that in fifty years time McCaw’s sporting achievements will be largely noted by most nzers only as answers to quiz questions.

                    Whiting seems to have literally helped shape the face of NZ, restoring marae and making mainstream nz a bit less vanilla.

                    If you want to talk all blacks making an impact, I’ll be really interested to see what Sonny Bill Williams does in the next few years – he seems to be focused on leveraging his fame for something more than advertising revenue.

                    • alwyn

                      “Consider that in fifty years time McCaw’s sporting achievements will be largely noted by …”
                      I had a chance to test that proposition this morning. Not quite what you suggest, as I haven’t mastered time travel, but fairly close.
                      I got a chance to ask NZ history questions of a small group aged in their early 20s.
                      I asked then if the knew who George Nepia, Michael Joseph Savage, Don Clarke and Walter Nash were.
                      I was truly amazed that the majority knew Nepia and Clarke. Savage and Nash were almost unknown. They weren’t from a Rugby club or anything like that.
                      Perhaps McCaw will be remembered when Key and Clark are long forgotten.

                    • tracey

                      What did they remember them for? Great rugby ayers or their lifetime of selfless service to NZ

                    • Macro

                      Yes totally agree re SBW. His latest shows where his heart lies:

                      The New Zealand-born rugby league player and heavyweight boxer recently went on a trip with UNICEF to refugee camps for Syrians in Lebanon.

                      After returning from the eye-opening trip, Williams tweeted a graphic image to his Twitter followers asking the poignant question: “What did these children do to deserve this?”

                      His question was followed by the statement of: “This summer share a thought for the innocent lives lost everyday in war.”

                      There has been much tut tutting by the moral righteous – “disturbing graphic pictures”, “Think of the families”, etc. but what he is doing is challenging the complacency and complicity of the majority to really think about what they are doing – and he is so right. If the images of those poor children and the stories SBW brings back from the camps in Lebanon bring some to rethink the stupidity of this chaos – he has done his work.
                      Good on him.

                    • McFlock

                      I asked then if the knew who George Nepia, Michael Joseph Savage, Don Clarke and Walter Nash were.
                      I was truly amazed that the majority knew Nepia and Clarke. Savage and Nash were almost unknown. They weren’t from a Rugby club or anything like that.

                      Each to their own.
                      My point, to use your example, was that Savage and Nash advanced our nation and saved innumerable lives. Nepia and Clarke apparently won some sports games. That’s the difference between “fame” and “substance”. People you associate with might not remember their names, but some of them almost certainly regularly use roads, power stations, or social services that find their origin in Savage and Nash.

                      That’s my point about Whiting. I’d never heard of him either, but it seems that he’s helped to fundamentally change NZ’s sense of identity. McCaw…. not so much.

                    • alwyn

                      I guess you’ll have to allow that Shipley did do some things you approve of then.

                      On the other hand just how do you come to the conclusion that Nash actually did very much that helped New Zealand?
                      And, as far as Savage is concerned, did you approve of his tagging along with his master when he said, about Britain, “Where she goes, we go. Where she stands, we stand” and took us into a war?

                      By the way, if you want to see a view on Savage and Nash that is by one of the left wing of the Labour Party at the time I suggest you have a look at John A Lee’s “Simple on a Soapbox”. Lee was a genuine socialist who was side-tracked and later expelled by the leaders of the Labour Party at the time. He was far to left for them, wasn’t he?

                    • McFlock

                      Shipley wrecked far more than whatever good she created. The poverty rates she helped create kill kids to this day. Sort of a parallel universe, goatee bearded- Michael Joseph Savage.

                      Savage and Nash created far more than they harmed. Even if Savage had said that about WW1 rather than as close to a “just” war as one can get, it was more than made up by the legacy of the Social Security Act and state housing. Nash was part of the first Labour government, and the 2nd also initiated strategic infrastructure that NZ uses to this day.

                      Fuck, now you’re going on about John A Lee? He wasn’t so much “too far left” as “too much of an insensitive dick to get broad support”.

              • Fran

                I guess this means you are only aware of great pakeha arts achievements and have never visited Te Papa. Look a bit further.

                • alwyn

                  The “ignorant honky” comment I see. And what a silly assumption on your part.
                  If they really wanted to honour a truly great artist they would have put Colin McCahon in the very first lot chosen. That was the only chance of course as he died about three months later.

          • Grant

            Google is a marvelous thing:

        • Magisterium

          Mr Richard Hugh McCaw – For services to New Zealand

          He hasn’t actually done anything for NZ.

          Were you to actually ask the people of NZ, you would find that you are incorrect.

          • Draco T Bastard

            There’s a difference between perception and reality. In reality he hasn’t done a damn thing because playing a game doesn’t actually do anything.

            • Naturesong

              His impressive win percentage will have reduced the number of domestic violence incidences than if he had a worse win/loss record?

              That’s probably it 😛

          • Psycho Milt

            Were you to actually ask the people of NZ, you would find that you are incorrect.

            Unless you’ve actually conducted that survey yourself, you’re talking out your arse. And even if you had conducted that survey, unless it asked the participants to identify exactly what it was they imagine McCaw has done for New Zealand, and they came up with significant achievements that benefited the country as a whole, you’d still be talking out your arse.

  2. John 2

    Everyone should look at the article in this link.

    Commissioner Bush has known since 2011 that there was no investigation and that his staff had told 4 MP’s, the Privacy Commissioner and IPCA that there had been and all documents had been disclosed. Then in November 2014 his staff had to finally admit to the Omdudsman that there had been no investigation and no documents existed. So why have the police done nothing

  3. Penny Bright 3

    Where have all the ‘social justice activists’ been on THIS horror story regarding local government ‘democracy’ and ‘accountability’ ?

    Which political parties supported the Kaipara District Council Rates Validation Act?

    In my opinion, on this matter, should all be REALLY ashamed of yourselves!

    Seen THIS?

    (Radio NZ 31 January 2015).

    “Kaipara ratepayers target Auditor-General

    A Northland residents’ group is planning to bill the Auditor-General’s office for $54 million over an ongoing dispute.

    The Mangawhai Ratepayers and Residents Association lost legal action it took against Kaipara District Council over the cost of a new major wastewater treatment project.

    Chairman Bruce Rogan said the bulk of the invoice was made up of the cost of the project, minus the price the community was originally consulted on.

    “That was $17m and when the final invoice came in from the builders, it was $63m,” he said.

    “So I took the difference between the two and said ‘well, that loss is at the door of the Auditor-General’, because the Auditor-General was the party responsible for looking after the interests of the community in that time.”

    Further court action possible

    The Mangawhai Ratepayers and Residents Association applied to the High Court in 2013 for a judicial review of the legality of the rates levied to fund loans the council had failed to consult ratepayers about.

    The court found the borrowing was unlawful but could not find the rates were also illegal as Parliament had passed a special bill to validate them.

    Earlier this month, the Court of Appeal dismissed the association’s appeal against that ruling and ordered it to pay the council’s costs.

    Mr Rogan said the association was still considering a further appeal to the Supreme Court.”


    GOOD on the Mangawhai Residents and Ratepayers Association!

    As I have said before (to the face of Auditor-General Lyn Provost – in the Auckland Town Hall), in my considered opinion, she is corrupt, unfit for duty, and should be sacked.

    (That was after Auditor-General Lyn Provost had declined my request to investigate a matter relating to Sky City, without her disclosing that she was a shareholder in Sky City.)

    I hope that AT LAST the disgraceful travesty of democracy and accountability that has been foisted upon the decent citizen stalwarts of Mangawhai, gets the world spotlight it so deeply deserves.

    New Zealand – ‘perceived’ to be the ‘second least corrupt country in the world’?

    Let’s see the rankings that New Zealand gets on the 2015 Transparency International ‘Corruption Perception Index’ – when it is published in late January 2016 ….?

    Penny Bright

    2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

    (Proud supporter of the Mangawhai Residents and Ratepayers Association).

  4. Paul 4

    Paris…………..too little too late.

    The list continues…..

    ‘The Storm That Will Unfreeze the North Pole’
    ‘The sun has not risen above the North Pole since mid-September. The sea ice—flat, landlike, windswept, and stretching as far as the eye can see—has been bathed in darkness for months.
    But later this week, something extraordinary will happen: Air temperatures at the Earth’s most northernly region, in the middle of winter, will rise above freezing for only the second time on record.

    On Wednesday, the same storm system that last week spun up deadly tornadoes in the American southeast will burst into the far north, centering over Iceland. It will bring strong winds and pressure as low as is typically seen during hurricanes.
    That low pressure will suck air out of the planet’s middle latitudes and send it rushing to the Arctic. And so on Wednesday, the North Pole will likely see temperatures of about 35 degrees Fahrenheit, or 2 degrees Celsius. That’s 50 degrees hotter than average: It’s usually 20 degrees Fahrenheit below zero there at this time of year.
    Winter temperatures have only snuck above freezing at the North Pole once before. Eric Holthaus, Slate’s meterologist, could not find an Arctic expert who had witnessed above-freezing temperatures at the pole between December and early April.’

    Tempers fray as the Alps waits for winter – and skiers cram remaining snow runs

    ‘El Niño ocean warming ‘causing havoc’ for seals off California coast
    Unprecedented numbers of dead or starving seals washing ashore as Pacific Ocean warms, with experts saying they are ‘preparing for the worst’ in 2016

    ‘Dozens dead in US Christmas storms
    While extreme weather in the US around Christmas is not unknown, meteorologists say that unseasonably high temperatures in some areas contributed to the severity of the storms.
    The forecast for the eastern US is for high temperatures to continue – Washington DC pushed close to 21C on Sunday.’

    Here was my list from before

    Open mike 28/12/2015

    • Pat 4.1

      worry not….we can buy some more bogus carbon credits from Ukraine….that’ll fix it

      • Paul 4.1.1

        Dr Joshua Freeman, Dr Hayley Bennet: TPPA could trump climate accord

        Trade deal gives polluters power to sue governments who try to implement the Paris agreement
        The core logic of these agreements is captured in the introductory text of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA): “to establish a predictable legal and commercial framework for trade and investment …” In these agreements, the right of investors to a light-handed, ‘business as usual’ regulatory environment is paramount. Considerations like climate change, health and human rights are given either low priority or ignored altogether.
        In more than 6000 pages of legal text in the TPPA, climate change is not mentioned once. On the other hand, entire chapters are devoted to minimising “technical barriers to trade” and ensuring “regulatory coherence”. These chapters consist of a range of rules that would turn the move to zero carbon into a legal minefield.
        In addition, investors such as fossil fuel companies would be given broad powers to directly sue governments in off-shore tribunals for unfavourable changes in policy under investor-state dispute settlement provisions.
        Awarding these powers to the fossil fuel industry is a direct affront to the Paris agreement. Given that trillions of dollars’ worth of fossil fuel reserves must remain in the ground – investor-state dispute settlement clauses are a disaster waiting to happen.
        Even now, their threat is very real. In Germany, changes to coal fire power plant standards evoked a $1.5 billion case initiated by an energy company claiming a violation of their right to “fair and equitable treatment”.
        Similarly, in Canada, a moratorium on hydraulic fracturing (fracking) under a major river brought a $120 million case from a US oil and gas firm based on the claim that it violated their “legitimate expectation of a stable business and legal environment”.
        Despite New Zealanders being assured there would be safeguards against these provisions in the TPPA the final text reveals these are marginal at best. Ratifying the agreement would therefore spring-load the investor-state dispute settlement enforcement mechanism.
        Powerful, polluting multinationals would become poised and ready to launch claims the moment we begin to get serious about reducing our emissions.’

        • Pat

          must confess hadn’t thought of ISDS for the restriction of carbon extraction…..the inmates took over the asylum decades ago. Of course corporations only have the power we allow them and frankly as it unravels the corporations will count for nought in any case as will trade agreements.

    • Draco T Bastard 4.2

      Quoting Guardian Article:

      “One of the concerns is that if these animals hang around for long enough, they will disrupt ecosystems that have a cast of characters that have been in equilibrium for a long time. It could take decades for these ecosystems to stabilize again.

      With accelerating climate change they won’t stabilise for centuries at the very least. And it looks like fur seals are now on the endangered list unless they shift from their tradition grounds.

    • One Two 4.3

      Has it ever occurred that the likelihood off weather modification programs is a contributing factor ?

      I read posts and comments such as yours, none of which make mention of what has surely been going on for over 50 years

      Human influence on the climate has numerous aspects, yet the focus on a single component of the problem serves only to narrow the breadth of the discussion

      Widening, not limiting ones scope of understanding should always be the intention

      • Paul 4.3.1

        I am merely pointing out how much extreme weather is occurring and that we need to act urgently.

        • One Two

          Understanding why it is happening will provide direction on what urgent action is required

          The ‘WHY’ is not adequately discussed and until that constraint is removed, positive outomes cannot eventuate on the scale required

          • Paul

            We know why.

          • Andre

            The root cause “WHY” (is the weather going weird and the global average temperature getting hotter) is very simple and well understood and has been for well over a hundred years: increasing greenhouse gas concentrations trap and retain more of the sun’s incoming energy. And the urgent action required is equally well understood, reduce emissions of greenhouse gases as quickly as possible, and then actively start removing them from the atmosphere. I think you need to show you have an understanding of that point if you want to be taken seriously for discussion of more detailed issues.

            • One Two

              and then actively start removing them from the atmosphere

              Using technology in an attempt to modify the weather….

              As I already pointed out, Andre

              • McFlock

                “Contributing factor” does not mean “solution”.

                Frankly, your initial comment read like a chemtrail conspiracist spraying vinegar on their lawn. Chemtrails didn’t cause global warming, because they don’t exist. And they’d be a relatively inefficient method of dispersal anyway, not effective enough for sufficient albedo change or chemical neutralisation.

                • One Two

                  That interpretation of my comment offers an insight to limitaions of your cognitive capacity

                  If you would like to discuss, without the snark that is fine

                  If not, perhaps consider what’ weather modification and manipulation’ could involve, then look at human activity which could also have accelerated destruction of the earths protective layers

                  Having paused for thought, if you still don’t have any notion that the same mindset which intentionally exploded nuclear weapons (example) into the earths protective layers, and which also has the ability to build a Hadron Collider, is not carrying out weather modification…

                  Then perhaps those cognitive limitations are a more pressing issue for you address

                  • Andre

                    By far the biggest “weather modification” we’ve been doing is pumping vast amounts of CO2, methane, refrigerants, and other greenhouse gases, and the main effect is really easy to understand. More greenhouse gases=warmer weather on average in most places. And then when people started developing sophisticated climate models, most of them said as well as getting warmer, the weather is going to get weird. The rest of it is filling in finer details,

                    I’m still waiting for you to demonstrate you have any understanding whatsoever of the really basic physics of what’s going on. So far you’ve just made vague reference to obscure details, and then gone “AHA”, we don’t understand everything, so there’s no need to change what we’re doing now until we do understand everything.

                    • One Two

                      You injected yourself in my response to Paul, made presumptions about the content of the response and now make the demand “I’m still waiting …”

                      The core issue is that ‘we ‘don’t understand ‘everything’, which has been the problem since the beginning when the ‘shapers’ of this world set the course we are now on. ‘We’ will never know when to stop, when to pull back

                      Keep believing the “sophisticated climate models ” will lower the risk of further human intervention making the situation exponentially worse. They won’t.
                      It can’t be stopped , it can’t be controlled so we need to stop the lies and bullshit, first and foremost

                      Ego and fear will ensure the lies and bullshit will continue into 2016 and beyond

                      Be well to you and yours

                  • McFlock

                    You used the term “weather modification programs”.

                    If you have any evidence of “what has surely been going on for over 50 years”, feel free to present it. Otherwise I’ll stick with the conventional evidence, which doesn’t require “weather modification programs” to explain climate change.

                    • One Two

                      Clearly you’ve been provided with evidence and perhaps you even searched some out, but decided it was all just “chem trails”

                      I’ll not be taking time to feed into your predjudice

                    • ropata

                      oil based technology is a climate modifier… no conspiracy, just a simple fact, that deniers are unable to understand

                    • McFlock

                      @OneTwo: so you’re not going to get to the point? Good luck with that.

                      @ropata: yes, carbon emissions change the climate. I do not believe that an intentional program over the past 50 years had climate change as its objective, which is what onetwo seemed to be suggesting.

                    • One Two

                      No , that’s not what I was suggesting in my original response to Paul or any follow up comments to anyone else

                      I’m interested in understanding all and any possibilities which have , might be, and are contributing to what is understood as Climate Change

                      With the documented history of scientic malfeasance involving the natural world, passing itself off as ‘bio-tech’ for example. It is illogical to believe there has not been wholsale efforts which have intentionally or unintentionally modified the climate

                      Perhaps in an effort to recover the damage created by detonating nuclear weapons, launching satellites, shuttles and exploratory vehicles

                      Perhaps the 1977 Environmental Modification Convention was purely precautionary in case aggressive cloud seeding was the apex of capability or military intention, ever

                      Perhaps it was all permanently shut down , the war machine deciding it a step too far and chose hunanity over weapons development

                    • McFlock

                      A “weather modification program” (your original term) is conventionally understood to be a program with the objective of modifying the weather. Like how the “space program” was not a program with the objective of designing a better pizza-delivery moped, it was in fact a program to explore space. Language. It’s fan-tastic.

                      It is illogical to believe there has not been wholsale efforts which have intentionally or unintentionally modified the climate

                      Let’s unpack that a bit:
                      “unintentionally modified the climate” – of course, from carbon emissions that are the result of various programs to mine hydrocarbons provide energy to people, or even CFC emissions that severely damaged the ozone layer. Nobody’s debating that point, except extreme tories. But then none of those were “weather modification programs”.

                      “intentionally modified the climate” – in other words “weather modification programs” – aside from cloud seeding (which affects local weather, not climate, and has patchy results anyway), I have not heard of any programs that had this as even a theoretical objective. Feel free to provide links.

                      Perhaps in an effort to recover the damage created by detonating nuclear weapons, launching satellites, shuttles and exploratory vehicles

                      According to the red counter on the right of the screen, global warming is equivalent to three billion atomic bomb tests.

                      Perhaps the 1977 Environmental Modification Convention was purely precautionary in case aggressive cloud seeding was the apex of capability or military intention, ever

                      Maybe. Maybe it’s the same as treaties to not exploit Antarctica, or detonate nukes in space, or even on who owns the moon and other planets: it’s crap that might come up sooner, but probably later.

      • Andre 4.3.2

        I get the feeling you don’t appreciate just how big a problem climate modelling is. I’ve done some modelling of much simpler physical systems, and the number of calculations of variables at vast numbers of points of interest rises exponentially for each new effect you want to add into the model. So I’m in awe of how many details and effects are already incorporated into models I’m vaguely aware of.

        For instance, changing land use such as clearing forest to graze livestock or grow crops or urban development has pretty significant weather and climate modification effects. It changes the absorption and re-radiation of heat, the cycling of water into and out of the atmosphere, it changes the local concentrations of greenhouse gases, and changes how heat is generated locally from human activities. And I’m pretty sure the better climate models already account for it.

        If you’re thinking of things such as cloud-seeding to induce local increases in rain or snow, those efforts are so limited both geographically and in time I suspect they are way, way down the list of effects yet to get incorporated into the models. Much smaller than changes in variables such as leakage rates from gas reticulation systems for instance.

        And a large part of what climate modellers spend time on is incorporating ever more details into the models, widening the scope of what’s covered.

  5. weka 5

    The differences between science as one of the searches for knowledge and Science as religion, the one true way,

    Among these traits, it is Dawkins’s identification with Darwin that is most incongruous. No two minds could be less alike than those of the great nineteenth-century scientist and the latter-day evangelist for atheism. Hesitant, doubtful, and often painfully perplexed, Darwin understood science as an empirical investigation in which truth is never self-evident and theories are always provisional. If science, for Darwin, was a method of inquiry that enabled him to edge tentatively and humbly toward the truth, for Dawkins, science is an unquestioned view of the world. The Victorians are often mocked for their supposed certainties, when in fact many of them (Darwin not least) were beset by anxieties and uncertainties. Dawkins, by contrast, seems never to doubt for a moment the capacity of the human mind—his own, at any rate—to resolve questions that previous generations have found insoluble.

    • joe90 5.1

      capacity of the human mind—his own, at any rate—to resolve questions

      More hit piece than review.

    • Nic the NZer 5.2

      That article is an embarrassingly poor criticism of Dawkins position on religion and science. Its main point, “Religion is a type of supernatural belief, which is irrational, and we will all be better off without it: for all its paraphernalia of evolution and memes, this is the sum total of Dawkins’s argument for atheism.” is simply true. If you are not engaged in science then you have given up all pretense of knowledge (e.g that what you are saying is true), it may not be true. On the other hand if anybody thinks this is a good criticism, then they need to finish this argument with a statement justifying why people should be deluded into untrue beliefs (for some purported good).

      Its also rather silly making an argument against Dawkins ‘positivism’, because he is not a positivist. This is no longer the main philosophical basis for scientific knowledge.

      • Tracey 5.2.1

        Mr Dawkins asks people to not replace truth with belief. He is fine with beliefs in gods until those beliefs get special exclusion from criticism or get state funding. Truth is not a matter od perspective. That is junk thinking.

    • Incognito 5.3

      I feel quite uneasy about Richard Dawkins’ crusade against religion. For me he epitomises the stereotype of a highly intelligent individual who paradoxically and simultaneously displays a high level of mental rigidity and arrogance. These people are almost impossible to argue or debate with, especially when they are confident and eloquent speakers and/or writers.

      Dawkins is a master of dichotomy and not surprisingly a very polarising person. For him it is impossible, because it is irrational, to be a religious scientist. In fact, this amounts to scientific heresy.

      Dawkins somewhat reminds me of Francis Fukuyama who held (still holds?) Liberal Democracy as the endpoint albeit imperfect.

      • Nic the NZer 5.3.1

        “For him it is impossible, because it is irrational, to be a religious scientist. In fact, this amounts to scientific heresy.”

        [Citation needed]

        At least an argument? No?

        • Magisterium

          No citation or argument is needed. He is a old white English-speaking male, therefore he is Wrong.

          • Tracey

            Great depth of argument M

          • Draco T Bastard

            No. It’s scientific heresy because science requires an open mind and Dawkin’s is obviously closed in many ways. Similar to RWNJs the world over who insist that the failed free-market ideology be kowtowed to without question.

            • Nic the NZer

              So Dawkins can’t be a non-heretic scientist unless he accepts the plausibility of a hypothesis which fundamentally reject science as its foundation? Some of us might think this is a load of hogwash.

              Or maybe we need to accept the failed free-market ideology because they are equally reasonable beliefs by exactly the same justification.

              • Draco T Bastard

                So Dawkins can’t be a non-heretic scientist unless he accepts the plausibility of a hypothesis which fundamentally reject science as its foundation?

                Nope, it means that he has to look into the beliefs to see if they’re viable or not. Now, sure, many a religious belief has been dis-proven quite conclusively but there’s still a few here and there that hold validity such as not stealing or murdering.

                What I’m saying is that he can’t dismiss those beliefs wholesale but the religious should be dropping the beliefs that have been proven wrong.

                Or maybe we need to accept the failed free-market ideology because they are equally reasonable beliefs by exactly the same justification.

                No, we need to drop the free-market capitalist ideology because it’s been proven to not work. We also need to look for other means of ensuring that no one lives in poverty and that the environment is saved from the ravages of capitalism.

                • Nic the NZer

                  “Nope, it means that he has to look into the beliefs to see if they’re viable or not.” because otherwise, he is a heretic against science?

                  I mean do you even read this nonsense through before hitting the post button?

                  “No, we need to drop the free-market capitalist ideology because it’s been proven to not work.” and you failed to dis-prove all the various beliefs of capitalism, so clearly you need to go back and look at the valid ones, like not stealing and murdering.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    I mean do you even read this nonsense through before hitting the post button?

                    If you think I’m wrong about something then do us all a favour and explain why you think I’m wrong. That way we’ll all learn something.

                    and you failed to dis-prove all the various beliefs of capitalism

                    No, we can conclusively determine from reading history that private ownership of the nations resources results in poverty and eventual collapse of the nation. We can also determine that it restricts innovation as well.

                    • No, we can conclusively determine from reading history that private ownership of the nations resources results in poverty and eventual collapse of the nation.

                      Well, yeah, but every other mode of production attempted has also resulted in poverty and eventual collapse of the nation, so the most this argument tells us about capitalism is that it’s similar in these respects to other social orders.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      Well, no, because no other mode of production has been tried. Even those that proclaimed themselves communist and had all the factories listed as state owned were really just another version of capitalism with all the power and decision making in the hands of a few while the rest were oppressed.

                    • Which makes your argument, essentially, that capitalism and all other social orders that have arisen are worse systems than some as-yet-untested utopia. It’s a compelling, irrefutable argument, but not a very useful one.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      Actually, I forgot to mention the number of societies that used other forms of distribution but I can’t say anything about their means of production.

          • Paul

            Are you competing for worst troll of the year?

        • Incognito

          I’d like to think that this quote from The God Delusion gets pretty close to your requested citation:

          “The metaphorical or pantheistic God of the physicists is light years away from the interventionist, miracle-wreaking, thought-reading, sin-punishing, prayer-answering God of the Bible, of priests, mullahs and rabbis, and of ordinary language. Deliberately to confuse the two is, in my opinion, an act of intellectual high treason.”

          Rather than pinning it on a (single) quote I’d like to rely on the subtext of much what Dawkins has said and written and that fact that he has rubbed many religious scientists the wrong way.

          Obviously, the sentence could be read as pertaining only to Dawkins, i.e. for him it is impossible to be a religious scientist but this is clearly not his message (‘value judgement’ would be better, actually).

          Satisfied? No?

          • Psycho Milt

            Dawkins’ view that someone who believes stuff without evidence doesn’t understand the scientific method is a reasonable one. It isn’t a polite, diplomatic, empathetic or friendly one, but it is a rational one and that’s what counts. The bitching about Dawkins tends to come down to people just not liking his statements about religion – which is fine, you don’t have to like any shit you don’t like, but not liking something is different from having a plausible argument for why it’s wrong.

          • Nic the NZer

            Well no, that statement in no way justifies or supports that Dawkins is a scientific heretic. Rather it implies he rejects un-scientific beliefs as irrational. Of course religious beliefs are by definition irrational, they don’t even ask to be justified on the basis of rational evidence for them.

            The fact he is abrasive says nothing about the quality of the argument being made.

            • In Vino

              Yes.. it is his religious heresy that upsets the religious. He is abrasive but quite right to my mind. But we have all these people who so desperately want to mix religion with science. Why are they so insecure and desperate? Try science with neither atheism nor religion, and you may get real science. Dawkins is an eloquent atheist, but he becomes impassioned only when challenged by the rabidly religious ranters- and he is right to refute their cant as abrasively as he sees fit..

              Not that I wish to appear abrasive…

            • Incognito

              It’s New Year’s Eve – best wishes for 2016 to everyone on TS – I’m stone-cold sober and backtracking through the comments to see where & how this derailed. Why on Earth am I doing this, as if anybody would care except me??

              For the record, therefore, in comment Draco T Bastard suggested that Dawkins might be guilty of scientific heresy, which was immediately taken up in comment by Nic the NZer.

              I don’t like Dawkins’ style and way of framing nor his language but I did not label him a heretic nor did I get into actually discussing his arguments, which are partly based on false premises IMO and as many others have also argued. To discuss Dawkins and the whole science versus religion dilemma in terms of right~wrong is another false dichotomy and detrimental to constructive debate.

              What I did say was that Dawkins regards religious scientists as scientific heretics and treats them with self-justified contempt – I provided a quote as well as an argument, as requested by Nic the NZer to support this assertion of mine.

              Why is Dawkins such a slippery topic – he seems to have this in common with John Key, who also is a highly polarising and divisive figure. Perhaps it is time for a drink …

              • Nic the NZer

                All the best for 2016.

                I see I miss-interpreted your comment, the one I quoted in 5.3 to be a claim that Dawkin’s is a scientific heretic, where it is actually saying that Dawkins claims scientists who take true knowledge derived only from belief are ‘scientific heretics’. I use the phrase, ‘In fact’ to be taken from the perspective of the author/narrator myself.

                But I strongly agree with Dawkin’s on that, for example I strongly criticize Ludwig von Meises (an Austrian economist) view that economics can be derived from a-priori knowledge and this knowledge is not subject to empirical testing.

                • Incognito

                  Thanks. You may not agree with the following though:

                  Not only do I think that science and religion are compatible with each other but I am coming to think that they are, in fact, complementary, essential and necessary, on a personal basis but also at the level of society (and even mankind).

                  I use the word “religion” in a very different way than, say, Dawkins. However, I don’t think this is buying into the conflict as he likes to frame it because I am not conflating it with ‘knowledge of the World’ as such. I cannot think of a better word at the moment, sadly.

                  • In Vino

                    Is that you, Dr Zeus?

                    (Attempt at mild humour alert..)

                    • Incognito

                      You have me stumped; do you mean Dr Zeus or Dr. Seuss by any chance?

                    • In Vino

                      Sorry – misspelled ‘Planet of the Apes’ Dr Zaius. I guess the joke is pretty flat by now, but it is too late to delete.

                    • Incognito

                      @ In Vino: No, I thought that I got the joke (but obviously not) and appreciated it although it probably meant that I had not made much sense 🙁 Dr Zaius is actually quite funny, I do admit.

                      I tried to trump and outwit you, which made both attempts at humour fall flat. My apologies.

                    • In Vino

                      Beware of trying to trump my incompetence!

                      And if we both think Dr Zaius is rather amusing, we have little to dispute.

          • tracey

            Why would anyone require thabel “religious scientist”.

            • Incognito

              No idea; I came up with it but not as “thabel” [sic] but as a concept or, in fact, a combination of concepts: a scientist who is religious and/or holds religious beliefs. (NB some would argue that one of these is a <pseudo-concept or an aberration of rational thinking)

              To me the concept of a “religious scientist” is a paradox, not an oxymoron (or aberration of the mind, for that matter).

      • Tracey 5.3.2

        I disagree that he is a religious scientist merely because he challenges those who confuse their belief with truth to prove their assertions.

        I know many people who know their religious beliefs are faith based and who do attempt to substitute truths of a scientific kind with their belief (eg creationism) .

        Certainly some religious folks feel defensive when confronted by him.

        By way of example if the collective we felt it could genuinely challenge the untruths in religion we might be able to stop things like taleban – al qaeda – isis – next. But we have to back off and resort to killing innocent people to try to bomb the believers into extinction.

        Letting go beliefs is fucking hard. I hand on to mine far too long at times. Long after they have been dealt a blow by reality/truth. It happens to me on here.

        • Draco T Bastard

          Beliefs are a viable means of determining actions until such time as knowledge can replace them. The problem that we as a society has is that far too many people hold on to their beliefs despite all evidence to the contrary and many don’t even look for the knowledge to replace their beliefs.

        • Incognito

          Tracey, did something go awry with your first sentence? If not, I don’t get it.

          Depending on how you look at it Dawkins tries to force you to take a position of his choosing:

          ”I am more interested in the fence-sitters who haven’t really considered the question very long or very carefully. And I think that they are likely to be swayed by a display of naked contempt. Nobody likes to be laughed at. Nobody wants to be the butt of contempt.”

          I have a problem with being forced, especially when it is done with “naked contempt”. In the same vein I have an issue with RWNJs and their counterparts ‘yelling’ at each other in the hope that the opponent will succumb to the loudness (or crassness) of the argument that they are absolutely and undoubtedly wrong and stupid and also stupid for not seeing and/or accepting this!

          Robust debate still involves mutual respect IMHO.

          • tracey

            As I saidso it is his behaviour you object to rather than his premise. Nonetheless even the rude can sometimese be right.

            • Incognito

              Yes, you’re absolutely correct that a rude can be right. But why do they have to be rude and/or rude about it? No need for this or “naked contempt”. I know this is a silly point to make – it says a lot about me – but I’d rather be factually wrong than rude in many cases. To get inter-personal relations and communication right is more important (to me) than being right, if you catch my drift; the winning at all cost attitude is something that I find hard to handle in other people.

              If you’re interested, a very good article on the use of contempt Bad Cop: The Case Against Contempt focusses on the “faith-science divide” but could equally apply to the left-right divide as if these are chasms that cannot ever be bridged!

              I guess this is another reason why I care about it here on TS.

              • tracey

                I understand that incognito.

                It is the same as those who resort to ad hominem in lieu of, argument or to scare off those who would disagree.

                Oftentimes online it takes many posts and replies to “get” where someone else was coming from, something that can be cleared up quicker offline.

                I do enjoy your thoughtful offerings here

                I have now read the article. I can understand Dawkins et al frustration with being nice. Being nice and tolerating some notions full of fallacy AND which continue to cause untold damage to innocents around the world while sucking up trillions of dollars, hasnt ” succeeded”. Many humans seem to need to believe in something bigger than them, for comfort perhaps, with full knowledge of our own inevitable end. But none of that can justify funnelling tax funds to religious schools, tax free status to churches and so on.

                Religion has managed to maintain an almost unchallengeable status. That must be wrong in a thinking society. Religions may challenge each other of course but it is with trepidation I enter this kind of discusion and more recently I bite my tongue.

                • In Vino

                  Good discussion.. Incognito, I sympathise with your dislike of rudeness, but, sad to say, people like Dawkins and Hitchens get spades of rudeness whenever they dare make a controversial statement. And it tends to come from religious people who appear insecure when their precious tenets (which give them their sense of security?) are questioned. I get the feeling that rudeness is OK to squash atheism with, but atheists are not allowed to be rude.

                  Not having made pronouncements like those of Dawkins or Hitchens, people like us have not experienced the full range of responses they had, so I think it fair to leave it up to them as to how they respond.

                  So many people have their minds made up in advance anyway – a common problem in many discussion threads.

                  Cannot find anyone actually naming Dawkins a religious scientist, nor a heretic one – only implications.

                  No disagreements with Tracey..

                  • Incognito

                    Thank you. People are (mostly!) free to respond to others in any way they like or see fit and I would not dare to tell them how to conduct themselves. But I can express my preference for or distaste of their style of responding and debating. I agree with the assertion made in Bad Cop: The Case Against Contempt that being rude or contemptuous is not particularly effective in winning over your opponent(s).

                    ”Cannot find anyone actually naming Dawkins a religious scientist, nor a heretic one – only implications.”

                    This was based on a misunderstanding and has been addressed in other comments in this thread.

                • Incognito

                  Good evening Tracey, I assume you refer to the article linked by weka @ comment 5.

                  A lot of ‘nasty stuff’ has occurred under the banner of “religion” and the same can be said of that other contentious banner “neo-liberalism”. That said, a lot of good things have also been accomplished under the same names. Nothing is absolutely and universally ‘good’ or ‘bad’ when it involves human endeavour.

                  ”Many humans seem to need to believe in something bigger than them, for comfort perhaps, with full knowledge of our own inevitable end.”

                  I’d like to dwell on this some other time to avoid being called Dr Zeus again 😉 I have been doing a lot of reading and thinking on this lately.

                  ”Religion has managed to maintain an almost unchallengeable status.”

                  I don’t see it this way; many traditional ways of life, including religion, have come under pressure from various corners. Internally, religions try to keep the status quo through strict hierarchical power structures and hard-line (orthodox) and often regressive measures. Please note that I don’t point the finger to any particular religion. Of course, this doesn’t mean that there are no internal power struggles or ‘modernising’ factions – it is in many ways very similar to the average NZ political party [pun alert].

                  ”Religions may challenge each other of course but it is with trepidation I enter this kind of discusion and more recently I bite my tongue.” [sic]

                  I think pitting religion against religion is an exercise in futility and only for the foolhardy.

                  PS Thanks for the compliment.

                  • In Vino

                    Dr Zaius, please! How could you make such a silly spelling error?

                    (Tut tut with suitable embarrassment..)

                    I personally suspect that clever ruling classes have skilfully tailored religion over the millenia to make it an instrument of social control. A Darwinian process, by which the most manipulative come out on top.

                    And then they get to decry Darwin…

                    Now how can you lose on that basis?

      • Nic the NZer 5.4.1

        The forward to that text says the author believes in Darwinian evolution, but argues that it no longer applies to humans. Putting aside if that’s plausible or not, what is the basis for rejecting the theory of evolution based on a text which doesn’t reject it.

    • emergency mike 5.5

      Thanks for that link weka. It summarizes very well the way I’ve always felt listening to Dawkins argument re religion.

      It’s a straw-man argument that paints all religious persons with the same simplistic brush, demands empirical proof of the non-empirical, assumes that the scientific method has a limitless ability to understand the universe despite being limited to that which can be measured by humans, and assumes that science is unchallengeable and ipso facto the only method of knowledge that deserves any consideration ignoring the fact that an entire branch of philosophy exists which concerns skepticism and problems of science. All this says to me that he is a self-impressed pseudo-intellectual whose closed-minded fundamentalist beliefs involve statements of faith, hubris, magical thinking, and authoritarian black or white thinking. Nothing I’ve heard him say leads me think he grasps the nature of science nor religion. If you want to understand religion you need empathy, which mean you speak with respect, and if you understand science then you expound it’s virtues with caution and caveats, not arrogance.

      It’s the same ‘religion is irrational’ argument I used to make and think was pretty damn rock solid as a 13 year old. Shallow, juvenile thinking.

      All that said I’ll admit I did enjoy this video, his best work by far I reckon:

  6. AsleepWhileWalking 6

    Oh Switzerland…

    Head of Swiss Army sees rising civil unrest and calls upon the country to arm itself.

    • alwyn 6.1

      I find it hard to see just how much more “arming” is really feasible in Switzerland. The population is only about 8 million and according to Wklipedia
      “In some 2001 statistics, it is noted that there are about 420,000 assault rifles (fully automatic, or “selective fire”) stored at private homes, mostly SIG SG 550 models. Additionally, there are some 320,000 semi-auto rifles and military pistols exempted from military service in private possession, all selective-fire weapons having been converted to semi-automatic operation only. In addition, there are several hundred thousand other semi-automatic small arms classified as carbines. The total number of firearms in private homes is estimated minimally at 1.2 million to 3 million.[”
      I wonder just what he has in mind?

  7. joe90 7

    I wonder just what he has in mind?

    Border security I reckon although I doubt they’re as well armed as we think they are.

    400,000 full-auto weapons / 2.8 million households = 14 per cent of Swiss households have a full-auto weapon in them. (With the 625,000 figure, it is 22 per cent.) This represents a maximum figure since a household could contain more than one soldier.

  8. greywarshark 8

    I have just read some good crime fiction. I slowly find new crime authors and have just found Mark Billingham. His book Lifeless is a play on words ‘Some lives are cheaper than others’ is the catchphrase. It is woven around the subject of some people having less life than others, featuring the homeless in London as the scene of the plot.

    Finding out who is behind brutal murders of homeless men takes for ever. But the story is gripping and sometimes humourous and Billingham tells a great story despite all the sordidness of life on the streets and out of it comes a camaraderie of the people who have lost the ability or interest in striving for a place in regular society. As he points out somewhere you might be only two or three month’s wages from being on the streets yourself.

    Another thing. I don’t know if he is right about stats for war when he writes this: “Thorne remembered reading somewhere that more British soldiers had committed suicide since returning from the Falklands than had been killed during the entire conflict”. And many become homeless and junkies.

    • Rosemary McDonald 8.1

      “It has been claimed that more veterans have committed suicide since the Falklands War ended than the number of servicemen killed in action.[46] The South Atlantic Medal Association (SAMA82), which represents and helps Falklands veterans, believes that some 264 veterans had taken their own lives by 2002, a number exceeding the 255 who died in active service, although no estimate is available for the expected number of suicides that would have occurred anyway.

      A comprehensive statistical study of the deaths of personnel deployed to the Falklands since the end of the conflict was published by Defence Analytical Services and Advice (DASA) on Tuesday 14 May 2013.[47] The study found that:

      25,948 UK Armed Forces personnel served in the Falklands Campaign
      237 personnel died during the campaign
      1,335 Falklands veterans have died since 1982
      95 of these deaths (veterans and in-service) were attributable to suicide and open verdict deaths”

      But, as the Wikipedia entry indicates….the whole shebang was not Britain’s finest hour…nor Argentina’s.

      (PS Mark Billingham’s a tolerable read…;-) )

      • greywarshark 8.1.1

        Rosemary – A Good New Year and perhaps a better one. Thanks for the info.
        By the way did you see Bill’s link at No.13 on The Knighthood and Damehood additions post. It’s history with pictures, entertaining as well as educating.
        (f you have positive opinions about other authors you think outstanding you can pass them on when you’re inclined. I only read books on paper though.)

        • Rosemary McDonald

          greywarshark….I am one of those people that HAS to read. Anything and everything. I too prefer paper…I can do screen stuff for a limited time before the old eyes go wonky. I will still print out downloaded documents if I really need to read them properly.
          If you like Billingham’s Lifeless…his others in the same series are worth a read…but in order. Laurie King, Mo Hayder, Stig Larssen, …and Colleen McCulloch (but not that damn priest one!) (All good literary snack food that may actually provide a bit of nourishment!)
          And Happy New year to you too.

          • greywarshark

            Thanks. Will note names/ Colleen I read was hot on the Roman history and did a few on that subject so that’s to follow up. I drop in Carl Hiaasen for something different – crime on and near the Florida coast with free-wheeling mendacity and some politics for seasoning.

            • Halfcrown

              Thanks greyshark and Rosemary for the info on more things to read. Like you Rosemary I also have to read, In my case there is so much to learn and so littler time to learn it in.
              Have a good 2016

            • Rosemary McDonald

              A Creed For the Third Millennium….

              Prophetic, cynical, and a tad depressing watching the PR spin doctors/ social engineers turn an essentially good person inside out.

              Upside….set in a new ice age US…good read on a hot day.

              • greywarshark

                I’m not strong enough to read many/any of such books especially about the USA which I found lost its scintillating charismatic power for me decades ago.
                Now their regular mayhem from their own citizens’ armaments can block our national news for a day while we hear from the sheriff from the mayor or whoever from the school spokesperson from the police from the parents from the participants from the bystanders – every little detail. Enough already. You get my feeling?

                The books I read tend to progress through a conflict and how the people dealt with it. I like the emerging hopefulness of The Day of the Triffids, old but good, and still relevant. John Christopher – I have just started his trilogy of the Prince, and of course his Tripod trilogy could be regarded as a useful analogy to the present day. Another old one. There were some interesting series penned and filmed around the Sixties while the PTB played around with the possibility of nuclear explosions and we were forced to contemplate a wrecked world.

                This is a summary from John Chrstopher’s Death of Grass which is as yet a fantasy but has a reality possibility in it, and I would read this rather than some USAcentric one.
                At first the virus wiping out grass and crops is of little concern to John Custance. It has decimated Asia, causing mass starvation and riots, but Europe is safe and a counter-virus is expected any day. Except, it turns out, the governments have been lying to their people. When the deadly disease hits Britain, society starts to descend into barbarism. As John and his family try to make it across country to the safety of his brother’s farm in a hidden valley, their humanity is tested to its very limits.

                A chilling psychological thriller and one of the greatest post-apocalyptic novels ever written, The Death of Grass shows people struggling to hold on to their identities as the familiar world disintegrates – and the terrible price they must pay for surviving.

  9. Andre 9

    Oh wow. The Trump clown show took it to an all new level of WTF.

    No need to actually follow the link, the URL says it all. If you do follow the link, you will never unsee it.

    edit:the URL truncates on my screen. So maybe you do need to follow the link for the full effect. If you dare.

  10. Draco T Bastard 10

    Road Warrior

    Four years later, Liss-Riordan is spearheading class-action lawsuits against Uber, Lyft, and nine other apps that provide on-demand services, shaking the pillars of Silicon Valley’s much-hyped sharing economy. In particular, she is challenging how these companies classify their workers. If she can convince judges that these so-called micro-entrepreneurs are in fact employees and not independent contractors, she could do serious damage to a very successful business model—Uber alone was recently valued at $51 billion—which relies on cheap labor and a creative reading of labor laws. She has made some progress in her work for drivers. Just this month, after Uber tried several tactics to shrink the class, she won a key legal victory when a judge in San Francisco found that more than 100,000 drivers can join her class action.

    “These companies save massively by shifting many costs of running a business to the workers, profiting off the backs of their workers,” Liss-Riordan says with calm intensity as she sits in her Boston office, which is peppered with framed posters of Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren. The bustling block below is home to two coffee chains that Liss-Riordan has sued. If the Uber case succeeds, she tells me, “maybe that will make companies think twice about steamrolling over laws.”

    Uber operates as a pure capitalist business funnelling the income generated by the workers to those who don’t work at all.

    We can see this blatant exploitation here in NZ where contractors are becoming the norm. The same happens – all the expenses are shifted to the employees/workers while all the rewards are shifted to the bludging capitalists.

    • Ad 10.1

      Not much sign yet that either NZTA or IRD are on to this.

      • Pat 10.1.1

        they will be when tax receipts from PAYE drop too much….the one advantage of contracting is the ability to claim expenses, something that is erroneously unavailable to the wage and salary earner.

  11. Once was Tim 11

    “As he points out somewhere you might be only two or three month’s wages from being on the streets yourself.”
    It’d be nice if a few of that aspirational muddle class Key worshiper cohort understood that BEFORE the shit hits the fan ……. rather than AFTER.
    Afterwards just means they’ll all just be pretending.

  12. Ross 12

    Nick Leggett says it’s time Andrew Little became a statesman…by supporting the PM’s choice of flags! WTF.

  13. McFlock 13

    Right, happy calendar roll-over everyone. I’m off to consume responsibly within the guidelines. Well, my guidelines anyway 😉

  14. greywarshark 14

    Services to the state!
    What to do while waiting in an emergency? Or when the emergency and tension is over.
    The police and defence forces should be getting a medal. Being on alert after a terror attack must be very unpleasant.

  15. Holidaying in the Bay of Islands. It’s a microcosm of everything that’s wrong with NZ. Insane house prices, ginormous rents for those that can’t afford to buy. In Paihia, small businesses are being driven to the wall by $1000 a week leases, while the minimum wage staff pay exhorbidant fees to park their cars as there is next to no free parking in the town.

    Weirdly, I’m told that if your business is based on a pier or jetty, you don’t have to pay rates. Which means some well connected folk have profitable businesses, while their competitors metres away on land are they ones paying for the upkeep of the town. The only park in the waterfront area is also leased out to an expensive farmers type market, who sell to day visitors from the cruise ships. The park itself is now stuffed because of the damage being done by cars, tents and punters.

    Fun fact! The dull witted local council decided they didn’t need a freedom camping by-law, so anyone is free to park up on the verges, which is exactly what a group of iwi protesters have done next to the Waitangi bridge. Good on them.

    One last heartwarming Xmas story. I’m told the wealthy and prominent hubby of a local councillor, who owns rental properties, told the cops a couple of days ago that a former tenant had taken a large outdoor table when she moved out of one of his places. Rather than check the facts with the woman, the cops turned up at her new place with a truck and trailer and removed the furniture from her, gifting it to the former landlord. She showed the cops proof that she purchased the table from a local business, but to no avail. It’s not what you know in Paihia, it’s who you know around the council table, apparently.

    • Draco T Bastard 15.1

      She showed the cops proof that she purchased the table from a local business, but to no avail. It’s not what you know in Paihia, it’s who you know around the council table, apparently.

      I hope there’s a lawyer around willing to take the fuckers to court. A pledge Me campaign would probably work.

    • Rosemary McDonald 15.2

      “Holidaying in the Bay of Islands. It’s a microcosm of everything that’s wrong with NZ. ”

      And yet….up the road and to the west a bit is an area that is almost like NZ was 50 years ago.

      We travel often Up North…and Freedom Camp…but only once in Paihia.
      Dreadful place…that has a rep amongst the Brethren of the Eternal Highway as being positively hostile towards campervans and motorhomes.

      I believe there is a Jazz/Blues festival that will cause some of the Brethren to visit the town…but it is with great reluctance.

      The local Constabulary are known to be quite selective as to what types they pursue in a bid to maintain law and order.

      (Hint: always observe the three second stop rule at compulsory stop signs…)

      • ropata 15.2.1

        Nothing wrong with campervans per se, but they ought to use the appropriate campgrounds. Paihia is no different than other tourist towns in this regard.

        before the bylaws came into effect:
        – there were campervans all over the place
        – they camped out on prime beachfront parking spots (requiring 2 spaces to do so)
        – they paid 0 for the privilege when there were cheap camp sites in walking distance
        – they left rubbish and shit for others to clean up

        • te reo putake

          There are no bylaws, ropata. The council released a policy, but declined to vote in a freedom camping bylaw. Therefore, the protestors by the bridge are perfectly entitled to stay there. I’m told they have also talked with the elders at Waitangi marae and have their blessing too.

    • ropata 15.3

      those so-called “iwi protestors” are just freeloaders with a flag. they have been camped there for months but no-one has the guts to move them on. they even have a full sized gas oven in their tent. why don’t they go live on the Waitangi marae instead of public land?

  16. Gabby 16

    The former tenant will be contacting the local paper no doubt.

  17. millsy 17

    Happy new year all.

    Some predictions…

    1) Phil Goff will win the Auckland Mayoralty, but the centre right will gain a majority on the council. However several radical young progressive will end with council seats on the ‘left’ side

    2) Labour will hold Mt Roskill, but with a lessened majority

    3) National/John Key will hold steady in the polls for most of the year, but will start declining in the last half of 2016, Labour will steadily crawl up.

    4) A prominent business leader will announce that they will stand for Parliament in 2017, but it would be for a party we didnt quite expect…

    5) Free healthcare will be extended to under 18’s but will be paid for by cutting subsidies for doctors visits for the rest of us.

    6) The government will announce plans for a Royal Commission on the future of National Superannuation.

    7) The RBNZ will increase the OCR in the December quarter.

    8) An incident will occur that will sow the seeds for a 1951/1981 style confrontation in 2017.

    9) John Key will announce he will be standing for a 4th term, but will not be standing in 2020.

    10) John Tamihere will become new leader of the Conservative Party.

  18. Pat 18

    “Give me an N….” …. all thats missing is the pom poms

  19. Anne 19

    I Iive on the North Shore and the wind/weather is frightening. Much worse than has been forecast. My home is exposed to the NE and is shuddering in constant gusts I’m sure are in excess of 100km. Checked forecasts online and as yet no updates. This is what happens when you close down all the regional weather offices and operate everything from Wellington.

    • ropata 19.1

      Much as I’d like to, I don’t think we can blame the Nats for bad weather! ⛈

      • Anne 19.1.1

        No, but we can blame them for closing the Auckland and Christchurch regional offices and thus the information not always getting out to the public quickly enough.

        Edit: I’m referring to the Bolger/Shipley government. Them’s the ones what did it.

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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
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  • I’m so fly, I’m #NoFly!
    #NoFly: Walking the talk on climate change, by Shaun Hendy. BWB Texts, 2019. Reviewed by Robert McLachlan In June 2018, Swede Maja Rosén founded We stay on the ground with a pledge not to fly in 2019, and a goal of persuading 100,000 other Swedes to join her. In August, ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 day ago
  • Punishing the young
    We all know that NZ First is a party of and for old people who hate the young. But they've topped their previous pedophobia with a proposal that all young people be forced to do 100 hours community work:NZ First wants all young people to do 100 hours of community ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Journalism, clickbait, & ideas of classical beauty – but not science
    A couple days ago the NZ Herald published a story with the headline, “Science says Bella Hadid is world’s most beautiful woman“, and followed up with the ridiculous statement that Supermodel Bella Hadid has been declared as the world’s most beautiful woman following a scientific study into what constitutes as ...
    SciBlogsBy Alison Campbell
    1 day ago
  • Is Simon’s Smile Sustainable?
    A Sustainable Proposition: With as much as 18 percent of the electorate declaring itself “undecided” about who to vote for, there is obviously plenty of space for a party like former Green Party member, Vernon Tava's, about-to-be-launched "Sustainable NZ Party" to move into. The most hospitable political territory for such ...
    1 day ago
  • What the actual Hell?
    Keir Starmer has hinted that Labour might vote in favour of the Johnson government's shoddy deal, with the proviso that a second referendum is attached:Speaking to BBC One’s The Andrew Marr Show, he said: “We will see what that looks like but it makes sense to say that by whatever ...
    1 day ago
  • Hard News: Dealer’s Choice, an oral history from Planet 1994
    In 1994, I was the editor for an issue of Planet magazine focused on cannabis, its culture and the prospects for the end of its prohibition. Part of that issue was an interview with 'Ringo', an experienced cannabis dealer.I recently posted my essay from that issue, and I figured it ...
    3 days ago
  • The invasion of women’s sports by men: some facts
    Dr Helen Waite, sports sociologist and former elite athlete, on the invasion of women’s sport by men and the anti-scientific and misogynist ideology used to rationalise it.   ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    3 days ago
  • Remainers starting to sound like fascists
    As Brexit comes to a grisly conclusion (perhaps) people on all sides are saying intemperate and uwise things.  Some, like the Daly Mail, have been doing it for years.People as normally level headed as Jon Lansman are calling for automatic deselection of MPs who vote against a (likely) Labour three ...
    3 days ago
  • Labour MPs supporting Johnson’s turd-sandwich deal?
    I find this unbelievable:
    I've got one source saying more Labour MPs than expected are mulling whether to vote for the deal - including names who were not on the letter to Juncker and Tusk— Emilio Casalicchio (@e_casalicchio) 17 October 2019 I've compiled a list of possible reasons why Labour ...
    4 days ago
  • Why do we need control orders again?
    On Wednesday, the government was loudly telling us that it needed to legislate to allow it to impose "control orders" - effectively a parole regime, but imposed without charge, prosecution, conviction or real evidence - on suspected terrorists because they couldn't be prosecuted for their supposed crimes. Today, it turns ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Bullshitting the Minister
    On Monday, the Hit and Run inquiry heard from NZDF's former director of special operations, who claimed that the defence Minister knew everything about the Operation Burnham raid. Today, the inquiry heard from that (former) Minister - and it turns out that he didn't know nearly as much as NZDF ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Speaker: Extinction Rebellion is not a cult (but ecstasy for the people)
    Yoga gurus and cult leaders – I’ve seen a few. Two weeks ago, I unknowingly joined an alleged new-age cult at the Kāpiti coast, together with a giant kraken and some neatly dressed pensioners who would make any book club proud.They were among the two hundred people of all ages ...
    4 days ago
  • We need to bring the police under control
    The last decade has seen a trend of increasing weapons availability to police. Assault rifles. Tasers on every hip. Guns in cars. And following the march 15 massacre, pistols on every hip, all over the country. At the same time, its also seen an increase in the abuse of force: ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • If you can’t measure it, does it exist?
    In the last couple of weeks, I’ve been busy preparing for our summer paper on Science Communication. Looking for something amusing about ‘risk’ in science, I came across this neat cartoon about why so many people come knocking on my door (or phoning me, or emailing me) desperately wanting ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    4 days ago
  • Swinson’s swithering
    Jo Swinson is doing even worse at this Being Sensible lark that I'd thought.  I've just become aware of the following utterance
    .@KayBurley presses Lib Dem leader @joswinson on whether she would agree to a #Brexit deal 'no matter how bad a deal it is' as long as it had ...
    5 days ago
  • Women’s rights, trans ideology and Gramsci’s morbid symptoms
    by John Edmundson The International Socialist Organisation (ISO) have recently reposted a February article, by Romany Tasker-Poland, explaining ISO’s position in the “trans rights” debate.  It is available on their website and on their Facebook Page.  The article sets out to explain why “socialists support trans rights”.  It reads more ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    5 days ago
  • We need to take guns off police
    Today's IPCA report of police criminality: a police officer unalwfully tasered a fleeing suspect who posed no threat to anyone:The police watchdog has found an officer unlawfully tasered an Auckland man who broke his ankle jumping off a balcony to escape arrest. [...] To avoid arrest, the man jumped over ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • “Bringing kindness back”
    "Auckland City Mission: 10% of Kiwis experiencing food insecurity", RNZ, 16 October 2019:About half a million people are experiencing food insecurity, according to new research from the Auckland City Mission. Food insecurity, or food poverty, is defined as not having enough appropriate food. The City Mission said over the last ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Press Release: “Fake News” from Auckland City Council CCOs Board Chairs re pay and performance b...
    Media Statement for Immediate Release 16th October 2019 “Fake News” from Auckland City Council CCOs Board Chairs re pay and performance bonuses for top managers Despite comments from Auckland City Council CCOs Board Chairs re pay and performance bonuses for top managers—Herald Newspaper Tuesday Oct 15th–there is very little evidence ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    5 days ago
  • Ever-So-Slightly Bonkers: Simon Bridges Plays To His Base.
    Would You Buy A Used Propaganda Video From This Man? Bridges and the National Party’s strategists have discovered that the ideas and attitudes considered acceptable by today’s editors and journalists are no longer enforceable. The rise and rise of the Internet and the social media platforms it spawned means that ...
    5 days ago
  • Asking for food
    There is plenty of evidence of the way the business mentality has permeated every level of society since the recrudescence of market liberalism 35 years ago. You only need to think of how citizens in need of help from their government, their state, their country, are now routinely described as ...
    Opposable ThumbBy Unknown
    5 days ago
  • Forty years of change in the jobs Kiwi do and the places they call home
    John MacCormick Over the last 40 years, New Zealanders – and people in other countries – have experienced big changes in the jobs they do and where they live and work. These changes include: a decline in manufacturing jobs an increase in jobs in ‘information-intensive’ industries (which are better paid ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    5 days ago
  • Protecting Fresh Waterways in Aotearoa/NZ: The Strong Public Health Case
    Nick Wilson, Leah Grout, Mereana Wilson, Anja Mizdrak, Phil Shoemack, Michael Baker Protecting waterways has the benefits of: (1) protecting water from hazardous microbes; (2) minimising cancer risk and other problems from nitrates in water; (3) avoiding algal blooms that are hazardous to health; (4) protecting mahinga kai uses (cultural ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    6 days ago
  • Massey University triggered to rebrand
    by The Council of Disobedient Women In a press release today Massey University announced it has decided to rebrand and reorientate after struggling to be a University for grown-ups. For some time the University has wanted to be a safe play space for wee-woke-misogynists who have been really badly triggered ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • Swinson backing calls for a second referendum (again)
    After a brief dalliance with 'hard Revoke' it looks like the Lib Dems are changing ground on on Brexit, with leader Jo Swinson reverting to calling for a second referendum on Johnson's deal.The party has tabled an amendment to the Queen’s speech requesting that any deal brought back from Brussels ...
    6 days ago
  • An odious bill
    The government has decided that someone has done Something Bad. But despite their belief, there seems to be no evidence that they have actually broken the law. So the government's solution is to pass a retrospective law allowing them to be punished anyway, on a lower standard of proof. If ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • National is now the party of climate arson
    So, Judith Collins has done a Facebook rant about climate change, peddling the same shit National has been shovelling for the past twenty years: the impacts are overstated, there's no need to do anything about it, and its too hard anyway (oh, and its so unfair that people who peddle ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • The environmental footprint of electric versus fossil car
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to There is a lot of discussion on the benefits of ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    6 days ago
  • “Manifest” by Andrew Bird – A Song For The Times.
    I came across this song quite by accident. If it isn't one of Greta Thunberg's favourites - it should be.Video courtesy of YouTube.This post is exclusive to Bowalley Road. ...
    6 days ago
  • Passing the buck
    Last month, NZDF's shoddy coverup of what it knew about civilian casualties in Operation Burnham began to fall apart, with the revelation that a report on the matter, which NZDF claimed not to have, had been sitting in an NZDF safe for the past nine years. Yesterday, the man responsible ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • India a major player in Earth observation satellites
    While many imagine that countries like the USA and Europe dominate space activities, in fact India is now a major player on this stage. It launches satellites for its own purposes and also commercially, and has constellations orbiting our planet and returning data of vital importance to that nation in ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    7 days ago
  • The rot at the top (2).
    Thanks to a report from the Acting Inspector General of Intelligence and Security following a complaint by Nicky Hager, we have come to find out that the SIS illegally spied on Mr. Hager on behalf of the NZDF after publication of Hager’s 2011 book, Other People’s Wars. The NZDF justified ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    7 days ago
  • Common misconceptions about “Global Warming”
    COMMON MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT GLOBAL WARMING MYTH 1: Global temperatures are rising at a rapid, unprecedented rate. FACT: The HadCRUT3 surface temperature index, produced by the Hadley Centre of the UK Met Office and the Climate Research Unit of the University of East Anglia, shows warming to 1878, cooling to 1911, ...
    An average kiwiBy
    1 week ago
  • A climate of tyranny
    For the past week, Extinction Rebellion has been peacefully protesting in London to demand action on climate change. The British government's response? Ban their protests:Police have banned Extinction Rebellion protests from continuing anywhere in London, as they moved in almost without warning to clear protesters who remained at the movement’s ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Collins crushes climate
    An essay by Judith Collins MP reported on Carbon News yesterday seems to show an alarming shift in attitude within the National Party. Collins argues against the Zero Carbon Bill, the Paris Agreement, and downplays the magnitude of climate impacts. The Paris Agreement was adopted in December 2015 and ratified ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert McLachlan
    1 week ago
  • More disappointment
    When they were running for election, Labour promised to overhaul the Employment Relations Act and introduce fair pay agreements to set basic pay and conditions on an industry level, preventing bad employers from undercutting good ones. They followed this up by establishing a working group, which reported back in January ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • What do these mother-child studies really say about fluoridation?
    A list of indicators of bad science – many of these are found in articles promoted by anti-fluoride activists. Anti-fluoride activists have been pouring money into a scaremongering campaign warning pregnant women not to drink fluoridated water. They claim fluoride will lower the IQ of their future child. Fluoride ...
    1 week ago
  • Losing Labour’s Mills-Tone.
    Nothing Left To Say: Labour's pollster, Stephen Mills, remains swaddled-up in the comforting myths of the 1980s. As if the experience of Roger Douglas’s genuinely radical post-Muldoon policy agenda was literally a once-in-a-lifetime thing – as much as the party could possibly absorb for at least the next 50 years.MEMO ...
    1 week ago
  • Speaker: Disability and the Royal Commission of Inquiry into Historical Abuse
    The Royal Commission on abuse in care is very significant for the disability community. For many decades last century, thousands of disabled children, and adults who managed to survive, were locked away from families and communities. This was not for anything they had done, but for the perceived threat their ...
    1 week ago
  • Spain is not a democracy
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • UK Conservatives hate democracy
    With an unfair voting system, uneven electorates and an un-elected upper house, the UK's "democracy" is barely worthy of the name. But now the government wants to make it worse:The government has been accused of suppressing voters’ rights with the potential disenfranchisement of tens of thousands of people after plans ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • What is wrong with our building industry?
    Back in the 90's and early 2000's, the building industry was building leaky homes which should never have been granted consent. Now it turns out they've been building dodgy office blocks as well:New imaging technology has revealed hundreds of major buildings nationwide have defective or missing concrete or reinforcing steel. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Local bodies
    Local body election results were released over the weekend, to joy or despair depending on where you live. In Auckland, Phil Goff trounced John Tamihere, who is muttering darkly about running for Parliament again (but which party would want him?) Wellington is now a wholly-owned subsidiary of Weta Workshop, except ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A future of government
      How could government evolve over the next decades? Reports of democracy’s imminent demise are greatly exaggerated.  However, satisfaction with political systems in many countries is low, so there is much to do for governments of all political stripes to improve relevance and trust. Digital technologies are seen as one ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    1 week ago
  • Speaker: Catalonia, interrupted
    Two years have now gone by since the Friday afternoon when my university-student son and I headed out of our Barcelona flat to a nearby primary school, designated as a polling station for the vote that was to be held the following Sunday: the referendum on Catalonia’s independence from Spain ...
    1 week ago
  • Sage Decisions Unwisely Over-Ruled.
    Overruled: The joint decision of Finance Minister, Grant Robertson (Labour) and his Associate Minister, David Parker (Labour) arguably the two most powerful ministers in Jacinda Ardern’s government, to grant OceanaGold the consents which Land Information Minister, Eugenie Sage (Greens) had earlier denied them, offers bitter proof of how hard fighting ...
    1 week ago
  • Government may ban voting in effort to get more people to do it
    More than double the number of people who will vote in this year’s local body elections have tried marijuana or urinated somewhere they shouldn’t have. As local elections look set for the lowest turnout in decades, with many regions falling well short of 40%, the Government is exploring a number ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Woman: Deleted.
    A Statement on Abortion Law Reform by the Council of Disobedient Women   On the eve of bringing an end to antiquated, anti-women abortion laws Green MP Jan Logie intends to write women out of the Bill. With a stroke of the pen, the woke are aiming for total erasure ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • The Hollowest of Men Ride Again… SURPRISE!
    Musings continue apace about “the experienced businessman!” soon to be taking up a National Party MP position. Or to be more accurate, being parachuted into a seat to shut down their former MP Jamie-Lee Ross, who despite his own shortcomings shed at least some more light on the inner workings ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 weeks ago
  • Barbaric
    The Ugandan government wants to murder gay people:Uganda has announced plans to impose the death penalty on homosexuals. The bill, colloquially known as “Kill the Gays” in Uganda, was nullified five years ago on a technicality, but the government said on Thursday it plans to resurrect it within weeks. The ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Is this study legit? 5 questions to ask when reading news stories of medical research
    Hassan Vally, La Trobe University Who doesn’t want to know if drinking that second or third cup of coffee a day will improve your memory, or if sleeping too much increases your risk of a heart attack? We’re invested in staying healthy and many of us are interested in reading ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Fighting Monsters.
    Freedom Of Speech? The Säuberung (cleansing by fire) was the work of the German Student Union which, on 10 May 1933, under the watchful eye of the Nazi Reichminister for Propaganda, Joseph Goebbels, consigned 25,000 books to the flames in a ritual exorcism of “un-German thought”. According to the logic of the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • The next wave of kaupapa Māori politics: its constitutional, it must be.
      “There can be no such thing as kaupapa Māori political parties or politics in Aotearoa” (Willie Jackson, Labour Party (2017). Māori TV, General/List Election Special) I begin with that claim because at the time, I was confounded at first that it fell out of Willie Jackson’s mouth, and then ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    2 weeks ago
  • Night lights of NZ from orbit
    New Zealand has prided itself for decades with regard to its lack of pollution, and all will be aware that the ‘100% Pure New Zealand‘ meme is under threat through land, water and air pollution of various causes. There is another type of contamination that the country also faces: light ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    2 weeks ago
  • Reporters deliver uplifting news to fleeing Japanese residents: they won’t miss any rugby
    New Zealand’s media is doing its part in Japan, reassuring those in the path of the storm that they won’t miss any rugby while away from their flooded homes. New Zealand sports reporters stationed in Japan for the Rugby World Cup have had the rare and heartwarming opportunity to inform ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Government in contentious discussions about whether to put surplus on red or black
    Regional Development Minister Shane Jones is the only Cabinet member in favour of putting it all on green. As Finance Minister Grant Robertson finds himself with an enormous $7.5 billion surplus, the Government has begun intense, at times contentious conversations about whether to put the money on red or black at ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Jordanian teachers’ successful strike has lessons for here
    by Susanne Kemp At the start of September close to 100,000 school teachers went on strike in Jordan.  They demanded a 50% pay rise.  A pay rise actually agreed to by the regime back in 2014. In early October, however, in the face of government repression and threats, the teachers’ ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Why some people still think climate change isn’t real
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to Why do people still think climate change isn’t real? David ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • The SIS unlawfully spied on Nicky Hager
    Back in 2011, journalist Nicky Hager published Other People's Wars, an expose on NZDF's activities over the previous decade of the "war on terror". NZDF didn't like this, and especially didn't like the fact that it was base don leaks from their own. So, they had the SIS investigate him ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • October 2019 – Newsletter ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    2 weeks ago
  • And they wonder why we think they’re environmental vandals…
    The Zero Carbon Bill is due back from select committee in two weeks, and will likely pass its final stages in November. So naturally, farmers are planning a hate-march against it. But they're not just demanding lower methane targets so they can keep on destroying the planet; they're also demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Paying the price in California
    Last year, California burned. This year, to stop it happening again (or rather, to stop themselves from being found liable if it happens again), Pacific Gas and Electric is cutting power to half the state for a week:Schools are closed. Traffic lights down. Tunnels dark. Businesses unopened. Hospitals running on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Let’s Hear It For Up-Close-And-Personal, Hard-Copy Democracy!
    The Best Way: Missing from the on-line voting debate is any reference to the voting system that produces turn-out figures ranging from 77 to 93 percent of registered voters. The voting system used to collect and count the votes cast in our parliamentary elections. The system that involves citizens making ...
    2 weeks ago
  • 10/10: World Day Against the Death Penalty
    Today, October 10, is the world day against the death penalty. Out of 195 UN member states, 84 still permit capital punishment. Today is the day we work to change that. This year's theme is children. Having a parent sentenced to death or executed causes long-term trauma and stigmatization which ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Talking Freer Lives: a Marxist gender-critical perspective from Australia
    Among the great new bunch of political friends we have been making recently is the excellent Australian-based Marxist gender-critical site, Freer Lives.  So we asked the comrade who set up that blog to write something for Redline on the blog, himself, his analysis of the rise of gender politics and ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Government spin accepted by union leadership
    by Don Franks  The Auckland City Mission is struggling with a 40 percent increase in demand for food parcels this year. A total of 23,020 were needed by June. Last month Missioner Chris Farrelly told the Herald the “cupboards are bare” and without an emergency food drive, he can’t see ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Forbidden Thoughts
    by The Council of Disobedient Women   Massey Wellington Student Association had a sit-in today. Imagine a sit-in. On a campus. Against a women’s rights meeting. Did the ’60s really happen or did we fucking dream it? They gathered in the student square, an echo chamber. Sitting on soft pillows ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Much love to my loyal Ukrainian readership
    For some reasons, my post about the mystery message from inside the Downing Street bunker seemed to catch people's attention.  Quite a lot of hits from NZ (unsurprisingly) and the USA (a bit more puzzlingly, but hi there, USAians!!) and 76 views from the Ukraine.I've celebrated my Ukrainian readers in ...
    2 weeks ago

  • Ngāi Tahu CEO appointed to NZ-China Council
    Minister for Māori Development, Nanaia Mahuta, has selected Arihia Bennett MNZM, Chief Executive Officer of Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu, as the Te Puni Kōkiri appointed representative on the New Zealand-China Council. The New Zealand-China Council (the Council) was established in 2012 as a New Zealand led and funded organisation ...
    2 hours ago
  • Southern Response claims move to EQC
    Responsibility for processing the small number of Southern Response claims still to be settled will be transferred to EQC by the end of the year. “As claim numbers reduce, it no longer makes sense for the Crown to have two organisations processing the remaining Canterbury claims,” Grant Robertson says. “Since ...
    5 hours ago
  • Bowel screening starts in Whanganui
    Health Minister David Clark is encouraging Whanganui residents to take up the opportunity for free bowel screening, which can detect cancer early when it’s easier to treat.   Over the next two years 12,000 Whanganui locals, aged 60 to 74 will be invited to participate in the National Bowel Screening ...
    7 hours ago
  • Pacific Peoples Minister to attend Our Ocean Conference in Norway
    Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio, heads to Oslo today to represent New Zealand at the sixth Our Ocean Conference, which is being hosted by the Norwegian Government from the 23-24 October. “The Our Ocean Conference mobilises real action on issues like marine plastic pollution and the impacts of ...
    1 day ago
  • Government announces 27 percent increase in Trades Academy places
    Two secondary-school initiatives are being expanded as part of the Government’s plan to see more young New Zealanders take up a trade to help close the skills gap.   This includes the largest single increase in Trades Academy places in recent years. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Education Minister Chris ...
    1 day ago
  • Speech to the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs, Pacific Futures Conference: Connection...
    Session 4: Pacific Connectivity – Youth, Media and New Opportunities   Kia ora tatou katoa and Warm Pacific greetings to one and all. Representatives of Tainui, the local people of the land, or manawhenua – the indigenous peoples of this area – have welcomed you this morning in accordance with ...
    4 days ago
  • Methane reducing cattle feed one step closer
    The Government today announced its support for a project that could substantially reduce agricultural greenhouse gas emissions from cattle. The announcement was made as part of Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s and Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor’s visit to Nelson’s Cawthron Aquaculture Park. The Cawthron Institute will receive $100,000 from the Government’s ...
    4 days ago
  • Bill to refresh superannuation system passes first reading
    Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni has welcomed the first reading of the New Zealand Superannuation and Veteran’s Pension Legislation Amendment Bill. “Every New Zealander has a stake in New Zealand Superannuation and Veteran’s Pension,” says Carmel Sepuloni. “They are our most common form of social assistance – nearly 800,000 New ...
    4 days ago
  • Government announces next steps in fight against measles
    Babies in Auckland aged six months and over can receive a free vaccination and children will all have access to vaccines, Associate Minister of Health Julie Anne Genter announced today at Papatoetoe High School.   The move comes as part of Government efforts to step up the fight against measles. ...
    4 days ago
  • Speech to the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs, Pacific Futures: Connections, Identity...
    ***Check against delivery*** Good morning. It is a pleasure to be here, and to have the honour of opening this important conference on behalf of the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs. Let us take the opportunity to acknowledge all the people who have helped make today possible, including our special ...
    4 days ago
  • Police trial new response to high risk events
    Police Minister Stuart Nash says the safety of frontline officers and members of the public will be the focus of a new trial of specialist Police response teams in three of our largest urban centres. Police have this morning released details of an initiative to be trialled in Counties Manukau, ...
    4 days ago
  • New awards celebrate fisheries sustainability
    The Minister of Fisheries is calling for entries for a new public award to celebrate innovation in our seafood sector. “I have established the Seafood Sustainability Awards to recognise and celebrate those throughout industry, tangata whenua and communities who demonstrate outstanding dedication and innovation towards the sustainability of New Zealand’s ...
    4 days ago
  • More progress for women and we can do more
    Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter welcomes leaders in the private sector taking action on closing their gender pay gaps to ensure a fairer workplace for all New Zealanders. Ms Genter today launched a new report, Addressing the gender pay gap and driving women’s representation in senior leadership, from the Champions for ...
    5 days ago
  • Proposals to curb environmental damage help our coasts and the oceans
    Government Ministers today welcomed the release of a marine environment report highlighting the four key issues affecting our oceans, estuaries and coastlines.  The release underlines the importance of government proposals to combat climate pollution, ensure clean freshwater, protect biodiversity, make land use more sustainable, and reduce waste and plastic.    Environment ...
    5 days ago
  • New mental health facility for Waikato
    The Government has approved funding for a new acute mental health facility for Waikato which will provide better care and support to people with mental health and addiction issues. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Health Minister Dr David Clark announced the $100 million project to replace the aging Henry Rongomau ...
    5 days ago
  • 500 new te reo Māori champions in our classrooms
    The Government is making progress on its goal to integrate te reo Māori into education by 2025, with over 500 teachers and support staff already graduating from Te Ahu o te Reo Māori,  Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis announced today. Kelvin Davis made the announcement at an awards ceremony in Waikanae today, for ...
    5 days ago
  • Minister James Shaw welcomes 2018 Census first release
    Statistics Minister James Shaw has welcomed the first release of 2018 Census data. The first release of data today, 23 September, includes key data on population, regional growth, the number of homes and the size of different ethnic groups in New Zealand. Data from the 2018 Census will support the ...
    5 days ago
  • Driving transparency, ethics and accountability in government use of algorithms
    Minister for Statistics James Shaw today announced a public consultation on a proposed algorithm charter for government agencies. The charter has been developed by the Government Chief Data Steward in response to growing calls for more transparency in government use of data. Computer algorithms – procedures or formulas for solving ...
    5 days ago
  • New Zealand and the Netherlands working together on climate change
    Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor, Climate Change Minister James Shaw and visiting Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte co-hosted a business roundtable in Auckland this morning focused on working together to address climate change.  “The Netherlands is an important partner for New Zealand. We share a strong agricultural history. Sustainable agribusiness and ...
    5 days ago
  • Protecting fairness for workers and businesses
    The Government is taking action to build an inclusive economy where more of us receive our fair share at work and businesses can compete on great products and services, not undercutting wages and conditions, Immigration and Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Iain Lees-Galloway says. Two consultations launched today seek feedback ...
    5 days ago
  • Indigenous Freshwater Fish Bill Passes
    The future for New Zealand’s threatened indigenous freshwater fish looks brighter with the passing of the Conservation (Indigenous Freshwater Fish) Amendment Bill in Parliament today said Minister of Conservation, Eugenie Sage. “Until now, our freshwater fish legislation has been 20 years out of date. We have lacked effective tools to ...
    6 days ago
  • Kiwis to take part in world’s biggest earthquake drill
    At 1.30pm tomorrow, hundreds of thousands of Kiwis will join about 65 million people around the globe in ShakeOut, the world’s biggest earthquake drill. The annual drill is to remind people of the right action to take during an earthquake which is to Drop, Cover, Hold, and to practise their ...
    6 days ago
  • Rising wages and low inflation supporting Kiwis
    Kiwis are benefiting from higher wage growth and low inflation under the Coalition Government. Stats NZ data out today shows the rise in the cost of living remains low, as annual Consumers Price Index (CPI) inflation fell to 1.5% in September from 1.7% in June. “The low inflation comes as ...
    6 days ago
  • NZ economy strong amid global headwinds
    New Zealand’s economic strength and resilience has been recognised in a major update on the state of the global economy. The IMF’s latest World Economic Outlook released overnight shows a reduced global growth forecast over the next two years as issues like the US-China trade war and Brexit take hold. ...
    6 days ago
  • Keeping New Zealanders safer with better counter-terrorism laws
    Justice Minister Andrew Little has today introduced a new Bill to prevent terrorism and support the de-radicalisation of New Zealanders returning from overseas. The Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders) Bill gives the New Zealand Police the ability to apply to the High Court to impose control orders on New Zealanders who ...
    6 days ago
  • Improved succession and dispute resolution core of Ture Whenua changes
    A Bill that proposes targeted changes to simplify the processes for Māori land owners when engaging with the Māori Land Court has had its First Reading today. “The approach taken by the Government is to ensure that the protection of Māori land remains a priority as we seek to improve ...
    6 days ago
  • Speech to CTU Biennial Conference
    Let me first thank all the new unionists and members in the room. There is nothing more important to improving people’s working lives than people making the decision to care, to get on board and help, to take up the reins and get involved. Congratulations to you. You bring the ...
    6 days ago
  • Minister ensures continued Whenuapai flight operations
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark has signed a certificate exempting the activity of engine testing at Whenuapai Airbase from the Resource Management Act 1991. The Act gives the Minister of Defence the power to exempt activities for the purposes of national security.  The certificate will mean the recent Environment Court ...
    6 days ago
  • NZ joins Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action
    Finance Minister Grant Robertson has announced New Zealand will join the Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action while attending APEC meetings in Chile. The objective of the 39 member Coalition is to share information and promote action to tackle climate change. It was formed in April this year, in ...
    6 days ago
  • Feedback Sought – Section 71 – Lyttelton Parking
    Feedback sought– Lyttelton commercial zone parking  The Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, Poto Williams, is seeking feedback on a proposal to remove on-site car parking requirements for new developments in the Lyttelton commercial zone.  The proposal, by Christchurch City Council, asks that powers under section 71 of the Greater ...
    1 week ago
  • Feedback Sought – Section 71 – Hagley Oval
    Hon Minister Poto Williams Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration   MEDIA STATEMENT       Tuesday 15 October 2019 Feedback sought – Hagley Oval The Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, Poto Williams, is seeking feedback on a proposal about Hagley Oval. The proposal was developed by Regenerate Christchurch ...
    1 week ago
  • CTU speech – DPM
    Ladies and gentlemen, NZCTU President Richard Wagstaff, members of respective unions – thank you for the invitation to speak to you today. This might be preaching to the choir, but the importance of trade unions in New Zealand’s historical arch is difficult to understate. And it is my belief that ...
    1 week ago
  • Police Association Annual Conference
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    1 week ago
  • New Zealand announces a further P-3 deployment in support of UN sanctions
    Minister of Foreign Affairs Winston Peters and Minister of Defence Ron Mark have announced the New Zealand Government’s decision to again deploy a Royal New Zealand Air Force P-3K2 (P-3) maritime patrol aircraft to support the implementation of United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolutions imposing sanctions against North Korea. New ...
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand deeply concerned at developments in north-east Syria
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters says New Zealand continues to have serious concerns for peace and stability in north-east Syria. “Recent reports that hundreds of ISIS-affiliated families have fled from a camp are deeply concerning from a humanitarian and security perspective”, Mr Peters says. “While we acknowledge Turkey’s domestic security ...
    1 week ago
  • Government on high alert for stink bugs
    Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor is warning travelling Kiwis to be vigilant as the high-season for the crop-eating brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) is under way. “We’re on high alert to stop BMSB arriving in NZ. The high season runs until April 30 and we’ve strengthened our measures to stop stink ...
    1 week ago
  • Better protections for students in halls of residence
    The Government is moving swiftly to change the law to improve the welfare and pastoral care of students living in university halls of residence and other tertiary hostels. Cabinet has agreed to several changes, including creating a new mandatory Code of Practice that sets out the duty of pastoral care ...
    1 week ago
  • New trapping guide for community and expert trappers alike
    The Minister for Conservation Eugenie Sage has launched a new comprehensive trapping guide for community trappers to help them protect our native birds, plants and other wildlife, at Zealandia in Wellington today. ‘A practical guide to trapping’, has been developed by the Department of Conservation (DOC), and was launched during ...
    1 week ago
  • Widening Access to Contraceptives Welcomed
    Associate Health Minister Julie Anne Genter welcomes PHARMAC’s move to improve access to long-acting reversible contraception (LARCs). PHARMAC has today announced it will fund the full cost of Mirena and Jaydess for anyone seeking long term contraception, lifting previous restrictions on access to Mirena. “I welcome women having greater choices ...
    1 week ago
  • Major upgrade for Taranaki Base Hospital
    The Government has approved the next stage of a major redevelopment of Taranaki Base Hospital, which will deliver new and improved facilities for patients. Health Minister Dr David Clark has announced details of a $300 million dollar project to build a new East Wing at the New Plymouth hospital. It ...
    1 week ago