Over it.

Written By: - Date published: 10:54 am, December 16th, 2014 - 56 comments
Categories: journalism, Media, newspapers, radio - Tags: , ,

Let me get this straight. An armed guy in a café takes some customers as hostages. As Colonial Rawshark has commented on a couple of threads, this is a standard armed hostage type situation. Can we expect world headlines the next time somebody lingers in a dairy, holding the owner at knife point while the police congregate outside?

This whole Sydney situation has been bullshit and all major news outlets ought to be engaged in some serious self reflection and begging our fucking forgiveness this morning. Actually, no. What any reasonable news outlet would be doing is questioning whether the authorities have finally jumped the shark with all their anti-terrorist hype. But I guess that’s our problem right there. The shark jumping is a tandem affair involving both the authorities and major news outlets.

So it looks like you’ll just have to rely on your own judgement for deciding what is reasonable and sensible and whether or not the shark has been well and truly jumped.

56 comments on “Over it.”

  1. felix 1

    We are all terrorists now.

    • batweka 1.1

      and we can add people with mental health issues and refugees to the list of people who should expect to be monitored.

      • Bill 1.1.1

        It’s government, their propaganda systems and security policies that ought to be monitored. Unfortunately, all major news outlets are very much part and parcel of the propaganda system.

        I’m listening to Radio NZ right now. No analysis of how they reported events from Sydney yesterday.

        Also just checked the Guardian (that I was none too impressed with yesterday), and it’s carrying this sub-headline – Regardless of suspect’s motives, there is nagging concern over new breed of jihadists inspired by Isis extremism

        And here on ‘ts’ and for some reason completely beyond me, the headline post at the moment “The Sydney Siege Finishes” has been categorised under ‘war’ and ‘Syria’.

        • Tracey 1.1.1.1

          outrage that hager might make money from his book but the media drooling over this for ratings and money is okee dokee

        • spades' A spade 1.1.1.2

          It probably is correct to place such a post under the ‘war’ and ‘Syria’ category for the fact that the news outlets and authorities were spinning it in that direction. The news outlets and authorities caused it to be a ‘war’ and ‘syria’ topic purely through the speculation and/or propaganda that was spewed out. I think it is important for people to be able to find that post under that section so they can see how the authorities in the modern (western) world operate in linking a big group of people to a crime carried out by an individual.

          I wouldn’t be surprised if the authorities are not finished in trying to connect this directly to IS.

        • saveNZ 1.1.1.3

          Totally right. The word ‘terror’ and ‘terrorist’ turn people into salivating zombies, the most inappropriately used words from the past 10 years.

      • Tracey 1.1.2

        i just heard Key say that the 30 or 40 he named in his speech are like this guy…

        that means we just passed laws against the mentally ill

        • emergency mike 1.1.2.1

          “that means we just passed laws against the mentally ill”

          Time to revisit Foucault,

          “Moreover, he argued that the alleged scientific neutrality of modern medical treatments of insanity is in fact a cover for controlling challenges to a conventional bourgeois morality. ”

          “He further argues that the new mode of punishment becomes the model for control of an entire society, with factories, hospitals, and schools modelled on the modern prison.

          To a great extent, control over people (power) can be achieved merely by observing them.”

          • Tracey 1.1.2.1.1

            i should have been clearer… we passed laws to spy on the mentally ill rather than treat them.

            • emergency mike 1.1.2.1.1.1

              I didn’t mean any kind of correction to you Tracey, what you wrote made me think of Foucault is all. As in stomping on the mentally ill to protect the bourgeois status quo from any challenges.

              • Tracey

                No worries Mike, I got what you were meaning having read some Foucault in my time but it made me think my comment may have been misleading.

                • Sacha

                  “control over people (power) can be achieved merely by observing them”

                  I had forgotten that line, thanks. Great writer.

        • tinfoilhat 1.1.2.2

          Has there been some clarification on whether he had mental health issues ?

          • Tracey 1.1.2.2.1

            No, but then it hasn’t been as widely discussed as his being an ISIS brain washing victim.

            It’s interesting to see those who default to

            1. terrorist; or
            2. mentally ill; or
            3. Violent bastard

            I plumped for mentally ill

            • The Al1en 1.1.2.2.1.1

              I haven’t seen lone wolf terrorist mentioned yet, but then I haven’t looked too hard for fear of all the jerked knees, left and right, poking one of my eyes out.

              http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lone_wolf_%28terrorism%29

              And perhaps there should be an option 4 on your list – All of the above.

              • Tracey

                His alleged murder of his wife and over 40 sexual charges don’t seem to have been as a lone wolf terrorist, or as any terrorist.

                he is not the first person who has finally had his life of fakery and shame and crime catch up with him decide to go out in what they consider a blaze of glory but in my mind, that doesn’t make him a terrorist, just cos he had part of the Saudi flag with him.

                To my untrained ye most terrorist acts are done by people who go out of their way to be secretive until they commmit the act, not parade themselves in front of authorities for years first.

                • The Al1en

                  I don’t think previous history has much relevance when profiling lone wolf terrorists as anyone can turn, criminals or grade a students.
                  I’m not saying this guy was a wolfie, but it’s a legitimate scenario with many previous examples on record, so proper to proffer it.

                • emergency mike

                  My thoughts too. A guy who loses his rag and goes full fruit loop with a gun a la David Gray isn’t a terrorist. He’s just a guy who’s lost the plot. It doesn’t matter what cause or flag he thinks he’s waving.

                  Having said that, it’s notoriously difficult to define terrorism. Mostly because whatever definition you come up with, Western powers have been doing it with bells on in the Middle East.

                  But the point is that we don’t really need to define it. Attacks like this are simply criminal acts. We already have laws against them. More spy powers isn’t going to do anything to stop other people like this.

                  Quit shitting on Middle Eastern countries could be the way to go imo.

                  • Tracey

                    agree and having it hard to define plays into the hands of the hysterics. people are never easier to manipulate than when scared.

            • tinfoilhat 1.1.2.2.1.2

              “I plumped for mentally ill”

              I think we all struggle to find a reason why anyone would do such things, probably because they vast majority of us can never imagine going there ourselves.

              • Tracey

                and because some very seriously mentally unwell people who dont get help have committed some murder and violence in the past.

          • Anne 1.1.2.2.2

            For god’s sake tinfoilhat the media has been full of his past. It seems he was in one of those notorious Australian detention centres and we all know (or should know) that many of those refugees ended up seriously damaged for life. So, you could say… Australia was instrumental in producing this disturbed individual in the first place.

            He was a profoundly deranged person who, as Dr Paul Buchanan puts it, cloaked himself as an apparent extremist.

            http://www.radionz.co.nz/audio/player/20161223

            • tinfoilhat 1.1.2.2.2.1

              ‘..it seems……’

              ‘..we all know……’

              ‘… so you could say…..’

              Yes there’s a lot of that going about at the moment Anne.

  2. Bill 2

    And still Radio NZ is giving uncritical airtime to that twat Abbot wanking on about how the gunman had (paraphrasing) “a symbol of the ISIS death cult”…

    Now, as far as I can figure, something along the lines of ‘Allah is the one god and Muhammad is his prophet’ is benign and a widely used slogan within Islam.

    Meanwhile, a quick google search confirms that ‘all’ major news outlets are running apologist lines to the effect that Man Haron Monis was kinda sorta almost a terrorist and the only reason he wasn’t actually one is because of the small and to be quietly brushed over detail, that he didn’t actually belong to any terrorist organisation…

    The fuckers peddled hype and lies that have only served to permit a ramping up of anti-Islamic sentiment and bullshit by bigots. That they are thus far refusing to acknowledge their part in this particularly rancid piece of propaganda is, at best, disturbing.

    • emergency mike 2.1

      “While this was the work of a disturbed individual, Islamic State was also running an outreach campaign trying to tap into such people, he said.

      The Prime Minister said the holding up of an Islamic flag in the Lindt cafe in Sydney made it feel like ISIS (Islamic State) was the driving force behind what happened.”

      That’s on the RNZ site.

      I realise that they then printed a comment from Grant Robertson about how Key is conflating issues, but hey RNZ let me show you how to rephrase that in a less arse-licking spin-repeating way:

      While this was the work of a disturbed individual, Islamic State was also running an outreach campaign trying to tap into such people, he said. When pressed for evidence of this claim, Mr Key made a lame joke about how Andrew Little might be a terrorist because he ‘looks bit angry’. He then said that ‘Labour made stuff up too’. He really is a dick.

      The Prime Minister said the holding up of an Islamic flag in the Lindt cafe in Sydney made it feel like ISIS (Islamic State) was the driving force behind what happened. However he became confused and looked like a dick when asked if he thought that Islamic symbols were exclusively used by ISIS, or whether they are actually quite common in the Islamic world. “Look, I didn’t have that feeling in my capacity as Prime Minister.” It was pretty embarrassing slippery shit.

      You’re welcome.

      • Corokia 2.1.1

        Is there a link to where Key said ” Andrew Little might be a terrorist because he ‘looks bit angry’?
        If that was on record Key should be confronted on that. It looks like he is up and running with the Nats latest spin on Little and he’s such a lowlife that he’ll never let a chance go by to slur his political opponents, even trying to link them to the murderous acts of a madman.

        • emergency mike 2.1.1.1

          No Corokia, I made that bit up as a joke. The first part of my comment is the actual quote from the article. I did say, “hey RNZ let me show you how to rephrase that”. Sorry if I wasn’t clear.

          Just annoyed that RNZ didn’t bother to call Key out on that crap.

    • …something along the lines of ‘Allah is the one god and Muhammad is his prophet’ is benign and a widely used slogan within Islam.

      “There is no god but Allah and Muhammad is his prophet.” It’s not a widely-used slogan, it’s the shahada, the declaration of Islam. It’s the declaration flown on the flag of Saudi Arabia, because it’s a symbol of Muslim ideology, much as nazi germany had a swastika on theirs and the Soviet Union a hammer and sickle on theirs. It’s also featured on the ISIS flag, for the same reason. If any violent nutbars don’t want government officials saying they’re carrying a “symbol of the ISIS death cult,” I suggest not carrying a black flag with the shahada on it.

      • Bill 2.2.1

        It’s not a widely-used slogan, it’s the shahada…

        …that’s been reproduced on coins and walls and whatever since…well, a long time back. In other words, fairly widespread.

        btw. You trying to claim with your swastika reference that Nazis were adherents to Hinduism, Buddhism or Jainism?

        • Psycho Milt 2.2.1.1

          Yes, much like the swastika, the red star and the hammer-and-sickle. It’s a symbol of an ideology. What purpose do you imagine that particular symbol had at this event?

          • Bill 2.2.1.1.1

            Any chance of you writing in complete sentences and being coherent?

            • Psycho Milt 2.2.1.1.1.1

              My comment appears incoherent because you added to yours while I was typing it. Apologies, I should have noticed the update.

              btw. You trying to claim with your swastika reference that Nazis were adherents to Hinduism, Buddhism or Jainism?

              See, this is the kind of sophistry you have to resort to when trying to pretend there’s no political dimension to this guy displaying the shahada at his hostage party. You end up quibbling about whether the swastika is a fascist symbol or not.

              • Colonial Rawshark

                The guy showed the shahada because he knew the media would be all over it and the eyes of the world would be focussed on him, for once. That’s not political; that’s narcisstic, deluded or just plain confused.

                The MSM and the security state politicians have been breeding this kind of over-hyped over-reaction for a long time now. Waiting for a chance to justify their own entrenched positions.

                • The guy showed the shahada because he knew the media would be all over it and the eyes of the world would be focussed on him, for once.

                  Asked him, did you?

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    Did you?

                    Hoist, meet petard. Run up some other flagpole.

                    • I didn’t need to. He helpfully made a bunch of declarations and hoisted a flag. This may come as a shock, but flags serve a purpose.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      CR’s interpretation is at least as likely as yours.

                      What “political dimension” do you attach to the violent actions of a violent man facing prison?

                      It emerges that the gun went off as someone grabbed it. What political dimension can we ascribe to that?

          • One Anonymous Bloke 2.2.1.1.2

            Yes, let’s pretend that assigning ‘purpose’ to the actions of a deranged criminal hostage taker isn’t projecting much.

          • Tracey 2.2.1.1.3

            to get attention, and you have fallen, hook line and sinker.

      • Tracey 2.2.2

        and

        In God we trust

        or
        God save the Queen

        or prayers in parliament.

        Are you saying the Saudis are carrying a symbol of the isis death cult” when they go tot he Olympic Games?

        • Psycho Milt 2.2.2.1

          Are you saying the Saudis are carrying a symbol of the isis death cult” when they go tot he Olympic Games?

          Last time I looked, the Saudi flag was green, so hardly likely to be mistaken for the ISIS one, but it does carry the shahada on it for the express purpose of declaring Saudi Arabia beholden to a particular ideology. The one this particular nutter put up was a generic Jihadi one, not the particular one ISIS uses, but it’s hardly surprising your average Aussie doesn’t know the difference.

          • Tracey 2.2.2.1.1

            it was not an isis flag… no matter how much you say it and that it is not counts as much against your argument as being like it counts for you. a genuinely ideologically driven jihadist would probably have a symbol which accurately reflects his ideology rather than just what came to hand on the way to the cafe.

            • Psycho Milt 2.2.2.1.1.1

              it was not an isis flag… no matter how much you say it…

              I haven’t said it was an ISIS flag. I’ve said “If any violent nutbars don’t want government officials saying they’re carrying a “symbol of the ISIS death cult,” I suggest not carrying a black flag with the shahada on it.” That still seems to me to be sound advice.

              a genuinely ideologically driven jihadist would probably have a symbol which accurately reflects his ideology…

              A black flag with the shahada on it is a Jihadi flag, so probably did accurately reflect this guy’s ideology.

        • Murray Rawshark 2.2.2.2

          “Are you saying the Saudis are carrying a symbol of the isis death cult” when they go tot he Olympic Games?”

          There’s probably some truth to that, Tracey. I think the House of Saud has quite a role in backing ISIL.

      • How about the flag of the United Kingdom, which bears not one but three symbols of an organised religion which celebrates death and self-sacrifice. Two of the symbols are used explicitly to honour victory in battle granted by their god!

        *clutches pearls*

    • Anne 2.3

      Haron Monis was kinda sorta almost a terrorist and the only reason he wasn’t actually one is because of the small and to be quietly brushed over detail, that he didn’t actually belong to any terrorist organisation…

      And he was holding a Shiite flag when apparently he was a Sunne – or was it the other way around. Whatever,that was bit strange for starters.

  3. Marksman33 3

    I am fucking appalled at the hype of this hostage drama. The media has blown this so far out of proportion to absolve themselves for their support for the GCSB fiasco. I lost count of how many times Muppet Ryan tried to get someone anyone to say that this nutter was part of IS, on 9 to Noon this morning. Fucking unbelievable.

  4. Nick K 4

    There *could* be a connection, but its more like the connection between violent behaviour and violent video games.

    People with certain mental disorders who have violent thoughts are looking for ways or reasons to attach their actions to something. If they don’t have one thing they have something else, and if it aligns with things that are making the news already then it’ll get more media hype.

    In this case he was certainly trying to associate himself with ISIS or other Islamic extremists when actually he was a sexual abuser from a cult he made up himself.

    Meanwhile in America some things are just the same old tragic news without any connection to terrorism (yet).

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/world/americas/64190542/six-dead-suspect-on-loose-in-us

    • Tracey 4.1

      Nick

      It is looking more and more like he is a very violent man who craved attention from his magical healing and self professed muslim leader to his barrage of letter writing and radio calls and used the ISIS thing to get the attention he craved. He may be violent and deranged but if that turns out to have been his motivation he has played the media like fiddles.

      His wife was burned to death…

      “Monis was on bail on a charge of colluding with his girlfriend, Amirah Droudis, to murder Noleen Hayson Pal.

      Ms Pal was lured to the Werrington apartment block in western Sydney where Monis was living in April last year and allegedly doused with accelerant, set alight and then stabbed 18 times by Droudis.”

      Interestingly no one has suggested the murder is connected to ISIS.

      “40 sexual assault charges.

      Additional charges were laid against Monis two months ago, and conviction for sexual assault would have ruined Monis, who was outed as a bogus Islamic cleric by Australian Shia scholars in 2009.”

      No one has suggested a link to ISIS for these crimes either

      Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2874295/Police-investigate-Sydney-siege-gunman-calling-Brother-lone-wolf-fanatic-wider-terror-network.html#ixzz3M1Kbu5xh

      The police on the other hand appear to have handled it as a gunman holding innocent people hostage.

  5. Iron Sky 5

    The likelihood you will loose life years as a consequence of bullshit Nanny Nat Economic decisions = Extreme. There is a GAP between how much money you earn and your life expectancy (it sucks being poor)

    The likelihood you will die of a Terror attack in NZ, make up your own mind (not saying past = future but) see belwo

    Oh, just aside I thought Guyon on RNZ was going to shit himself we sounded so excited.

    KNOW YOUR RISK: 6 Reported events relating to “Terrorism” in NZ

    Acts of terrorism[edit]
    There is no internationally agreed definition of terrorism but in New Zealand it is defined by the Terrorism Suppression Act 2002.

    Rail bridge bombing 1951waterfront dispute a rail bridge was blown up near Huntly.

    Wanganui Computer Centre bombingi. The attacker, a “punk rock” anarchist named Neil Roberts, was the only person killed, and the computer system was undamaged.

    Wellington Trades Hall bombing[edit] 1984, a suitcase bomb was left in the foyer of the Trades Hall in Wellington.Ernie Abbott, the building’s caretaker, was killed

    Rainbow Warrior bombing[edit]
    Fernando Pereira, was drowned when he returned to the vessel to retrieve his cameras, just before it sank.

    2007 anti-terror raids[edit] Although the search warrants used indicated that terrorism related offense were involved, no charges were even laid under the 2002 Terrorism Suppression Act –

  6. Iron Sky 6

    News Flash: Terrorists activate Project: Benign Death

    Realizing statistically, they have not a sweet chance in hell of hurting that many people their analysts have realized a cunning plan. They have worked out that statistically you are more extremely, extremely, extremely, extremely significantly more likely to die dancing or playing table games.

    Their cunning plan……….. wait for it, wait for it………

    To train Jihadists in the black arts of event management.

    Yes, that’s correct folks, death by Black Ops Event Management Squads (BOEMs).

    In addition, they have worked out that by combing certain events, their kill rates will be higher. There cunning plan is to organise DEATH Dance Table Game events all across NZ. Just see the stats:

    Dance parties: 1 in 100,000 chance of dying
    Table games: 1 in 100 million chance of dying
    http://www.besthealthdegrees.com/health-risks/

    KNOW YOUR RISK

    There next “JOB” will be to infiltrate the National Party to study the fine arts of DEATH by ECOMONICS. This is the Pièce de résistance for any terrorist organisation, control the money supply.

  7. Iron Sky 7

    KNOW YOUR RISK:

    Exert taken from:

    http://www.besthealthdegrees.com/health-risks/

    Your Chances of Dying

    The National Center for Health Statistics reports the average life expectancy in the United States is 77.9 years. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention the leading causes of death in the United States are (in descending order) heart disease, cancer, stroke, chronic lower respiratory diseases, accidents, Alzheimer’s disease and diabetes. (ref: http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/fastats/lcod.htm)

    There are so many ways to die early; from risky outdoor activities to smoking. At Best Health Degrees we decided to take a look at just how much you increase your chances of dying through these activities. Life after all is one big series of risks. And some risks are worth the shot. One study shows people have a 1 in 100,000 chance of dying while attending a dance party. Another study shows the odds of dying while skydiving in the United States is 1 in 101,083 jumps. What follows is a list of activities, from the ordinary to the extraordinary, and your chances of dying from them.

    Sports and Recreational Activities

    Overall, snow boarding fatality rate: 0.455 per million participant visits. (Source: Shealy, Ettlinger and Johnson )

    Overall, skiing fatality rate: 0.702 per million participant visits. (Source: Shealy, Ettlinger and Johnson)

    Long distance cross-country ski races in Sweden mortality rate: 0.11 per million1 (Source: Postgraduate Medical Journal)

    Skiing at downhill ski resorts in Utah: 2.46 deaths per million exposure days. (Source: Postgraduate Medical Journal)

    The mortality rate for specific activities undertaken in the United States:

    Mountaineering Mortality rate: 0.5988 (/100 participants)
    Hang gliding Mortality rate 0.1786 (/100 participants)
    Parachuting Mortality rate: 0.1754 (/100 participants)
    Boxing Mortality rate: 0.0455 (/100 participants)
    Mountain hiking Mortality rate: 0.0064 (/100 participants)
    Scuba diving Mortality rate: 0.0029 (/100 participants)
    American football Mortality rate: 0.0020 (/100 participants)
    (Source: Postgraduate Medical Journal)
    The Risk of Hiking and Mountain Climbing

    Expert mountain climbers: Annual mortality risk of 1 in 167.

    Recreational climbing – Annual mortality risk of 1 in 1,750.

    Mountain hiking – Annual mortality risk of 1 in 15,700.

    (Source for all three activities: Russell Newcombe & Sally Woods Centre for Applied Psychology, School of Human Sciences, Liverpool John Moores University, Henry Cotton Campus, Webster St., Liverpool, L3 2ET, England )

    Regarding Yosemite trad climbing, the chances of dying when climbing actively every third weekend for two days for a year are: 35 days/year x 2.5 deaths/year / 37,500 climber-days/year or 1/429 (John Dill, article about death and injury in Yosemite 1970 through 1990).

    The mortality rates among trekkers in Nepal during two periods between 1984 and 1991: 0.014 and 0.015 per 100 trekkers.

    On Denali, the highest mountain in Alaska: 0.308 deaths for every 100 mountaineers who register with the National Park Service.

    On Mt. Rainier: Estimated mortality rate of approximately 0.031 per 100 mountaineers.

    Climbing above 6000 m in the Himalayas: 10 to 12.6 deaths for every 100 mountaineers.

    (Source for all five activities: Postgraduate Medical Journal)

    Mortality rate while mountaineering in Mt McKinley National Park, United States: 100 per 1,000,000 exposure days (Source: Postgraduate Medical Journal)

    BASE jumping is one of the world’s most dangerous recreational activities, with overall fatalities in 2002 estimated at approximately one fatality per sixty participants (Source). With base jumping, a person jumps with a parachute from a fixed object.

    Annual mortality risk (AMR)

    Grand Prix racing: 1 in 100
    Motorbike racing: 1 in 1,000
    Canoeing: 1 in 10,000
    Soccer & rugby: 1 in 100,000
    Running/jogging: 1 in 1 million
    Swimming: 1 in 1 million
    (Source for all seven activities: Russell Newcombe & Sally Woods Centre for Applied Psychology, School of Human Sciences, Liverpool John Moores University, Henry Cotton Campus, Webster St., Liverpool, L3 2ET, England )
    Bicycling death rate: 7.1 deaths per one million participants (National Safety Council)

    Odds of dying while skydiving in the United States: 1 in 101,083 jumps. (Source)

    Odds of dying while bungee jumping: About two in one million chances of death. (Source).

    The risk of sudden death during a marathon: 0.8 per 100,000 people. (Source).

    The risk of sudden death while participating in a triathlon: 1.5 in 100,000. (Source).

    Odds of dying while playing high school or college football: 1 in 59 million ( Harvard School of Public Health).

    The Risks of Transportation

    Risk of dying in a car accident: 1 in 6,700 (Harvard School of Public Health)

    Fatalities per 100 Million Vehicle Miles Traveled: 1.14

    Fatalities per 100,000 population: 11.01

    Fatalities per 100,000 Licensed Drivers: 16.13

    Motorcycles: Fatality rate per 100 million vehicle miles traveled: 21.45

    (National Highway traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 2009))

    U.S. general aviation fatalities: 447; flight hours: 20,900,000 (National Transportation safety board 2010).

    U.S. general aviation: Fatal accidents per 100,000 Flight Hours 1.27 (National Transportation safety board 2010).

    Airliner (Scheduled and nonscheduled Part 21) fatalities per million flight hours: 4.03

    Commuter Airline (Scheduled Part 135) Fatalities per million flight hours: 10.74

    Commuter plane (Nonscheduled Part 135 – Air taxi on demand) fatalities per million flight hours: 12.24

    General aviation (Private Part 91) fatalities per million flight hours: 22.43

    (Sources: NTSB Accidents and Accident Rates by NTSB Classification 1998 – 2007)

    Men who smoke are 22 times more likely to die from lung cancer than non-smokers. Women who smoke are 12 times more likely to die from the disease. Smoking triples the risk of dying from heart disease among middle-aged men and women. People who smoke increase their risk of death from emphysema and bronchitis by almost 10 times.

    (Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)

    Lifelong smokers on average have a 50 percent chance of dying from tobacco-related illnesses, with half of them dying before the age of 70. Studies show cigar smokers have 4-10 times the risk of nonsmokers of dying from laryngeal, oral, or esophageal cancers.

    (Source: Oral Cancer Foundation)

    People who had a medium number of years lived with obesity (between five years and 14.9 years), the risk of mortality more than doubled than for people who had never been obese. The risk of mortality almost tripled for those with the longest duration of obesity (more than 15 years) (Source: Monash University researchers )

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    Yesterday NZDF officials were put on the stand about the lies they had told over Operation Burnham, making implausible claims that it was all a big mistake. But along the way, we learned they had already been put on the spot about it by a previous Defence Minister, who had ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Not as important as they think they are
    Farmers have been whining a lot lately, about the methane targets in the Zero Carbon Bill, about Canterbury's proposed nitrogen limits, and about the government's new proposals to stop them from shitting in our lakes and rivers. These policies are "throwing farmers under the tractor", they will force farmers off ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Behind Every Good Woman Should Stand – Another Good Woman.
    Alone, Alone, All, All, Alone: To argue that the Prime Minister is the victim of her advisers’ failure to keep her informed may offer Jacinda some measure of exoneration – but only at the cost of casting her as a hopeless political ingénue. A star-dusted muppet, whose only purpose is to ...
    1 day ago
  • Poor quality, poorly educated kiddie ‘Journalists’ spreading fake news
    In times of hysteria about the “World coming to an end” and “rising sea levels” so-called ‘Journalists’ who can barely spell words longer than four letters are having a ball! Though the majority of the Public have worked out that manmade climate change is nothing short of pseudo-science, and the ...
    An average kiwiBy admin@averagekiwi.com
    1 day ago
  • Chris Trotter on the BFD
    I don't want to give pblicity to certain parts of the internet that are better left to fester in their own irrelevance (I know, a bit like this place) but the listing of Chris Trotter as a 'author' on Cameron Slater's spinoff website, the BFD requires some explanation.Now, I don't ...
    2 days ago
  • Sex is not a spectrum
    The text below is a Twitter thread by Heather Heying that explains the essence of sexual reproduction and it long evolutionary history. She is an evolutionary biologist and a “professor-in-exile” after she and her husband, Bret Weinstein, stood up to supporters of an enforced “Day of Absence” for white staff and teachers ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 days ago
  • Climate Change: Trees, aviation, and offsets
    With crunch time for new Zealand climate policy approaching, most of the New Zealand media have got on board with a global reporting effort to cover the issue. There's one strand of stories today about polling and what it shows about changing public attitudes to the crisis, but the strand ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Pissing-Off The Israelis Is A High-Risk Strategy.
    Dangerous Foes: For those readers of Bowalley Road who feel disposed to dismiss any prospect of an Israeli destabilisation of New Zealand politics, the example of the United Kingdom repays close attention. Ever since the election of Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the British Labour Party, the Israelis have sanctioned, funded and ...
    2 days ago
  • Something to go to in Wellington
    Make It 16, the youth-led campaign to lower New Zealand's voting age, is holding an official campaign launch at Parliament this Friday from 16:30. If you'd like to attend, you can register using EventBrite here. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • A founding member responds to Peace Action Wellington
    by Don Franks It was a lovely sunny Wellington afternoon with blue skies above  the beaches.  In Courtenay Place, political activists packed out a stuffy upstairs room for an important meeting. The assembled pacifists, anarchists, communists and independent young radicals of Peace Action Wellington felt the need for a mission ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 days ago
  • “Mistakes and errors”
    Current and former NZDF top brass are being publicly grilled this week by the hit and run inquiry over their public responses to allegations of civilian casualties. Previously, they've claimed there were no casualties, a position which led them to lie to Ministers and to the public. Now, they're saying ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • “Homosexuality is same-sex attraction and relationships, not heterosexuals with delusions of gende...
    by Rafael D. Quiles (gender-critical gay man from Puerto Rico) The writing on the wall is right in people’s faces and people just don’t see it or don’t want to. What could actually possess a heterosexual male to want to feminize himself and claim that he is a lesbian? Because ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    3 days ago
  • Trump: “Where’s my favourite dictator?”
    From the Wall Street Journal:Inside a room of the ornately decorated Hotel du Palais during last month’s Group of Seven summit in Biarritz, France, President Trump awaited a meeting with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al Sisi. Mr. Trump looked over a gathering of American and Egyptian officials and called out in ...
    3 days ago
  • Magdalen Burns, 1983-2019, fighter for women’s liberation
    by the Redline blog collective At Redline we are very saddened to hear of the death of Magdalen Burns who passed away on the morning of Friday, September 13 (British time). Magdalen was a great fighter for the rights of women in general and lesbian women in particular, a defender ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    4 days ago
  • Parliament and the Executive
    The Brexit issue has certainly brought with it a series of apparently difficult constitutional issues, many of them concerning the respective roles of the executive and parliament. Most of them arise because of the unwillingness of MPs, despite their professions to the contrary, to be bound by a constitutional rarity ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    4 days ago
  • The Abigail Article; Martyn Bradbury’s Article, and My Response
    . . This blogpost is different to my usual format of reporting on issues… Since July 1011, I have blogged on a variety of political issues; near always political and/or environmental; mostly highly critical of the previous National Government. Other issues included Israeli occupation of Palestinian lands and repression of ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    4 days ago
  • Police will have to wear silly Buckingham Palace hats from now on, says Police Minister
    Those close to the Police Minister believe the initiative may be the result of Nash “seeing a great deal” on AliExpress. In a move that comes seemingly out of nowhere, Police Minister Stuart Nash announced this afternoon that he expects all frontline staff to don bearskin hats, famously worn by ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    5 days ago
  • A sensible crackdown
    The government has released its Arms Legislation Bill, containing the second tranche of changes to gun laws following the March 15 massacre. And it all looks quite sensible: a national gun register, higher penalties for illegal possession and dealing, tighter restrictions on arms dealers and shooting clubs, and a shorter ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • California bans private prisons
    Private prisons are a stain on humanity. Prison operators explicitly profit from human misery, then lobby for longer prisons terms so they can keep on profiting. And in the US, prison companies run not only local and state prisons, but also Donald Trump's immigration concentration camps. Faced with this moral ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Why PPPs are a bad idea
    When National was in power, they were very keen on Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) - basicly, using private companies to finance public infrastructure as a way of hiding debt from the public. They were keen on using them for everything - roads, schools, hospitals. But as the UK shows, that "service" ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • A Movement That No Longer Moves.
    Moving And Shaking: There was a time when people spoke matter-of-factly about the “labour movement” – a political phenomenon understood to embrace much more than the Labour Party. Included within the term’s definition was the whole trade union movement – many of whose members looked upon the Labour Party as ...
    6 days ago
  • NZ ‘left’ politically embracing extreme postmodernism
    by Philip Ferguson Much of the left, even people who formally identify as marxists, have collapsed politically in the face of postmodern gender theory of the sort pioneered by American philosopher Judith Butler. For Butler even biological sex is socially constructed. “If the immutable character of sex is contested, perhaps ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • The obvious question
    The media is reporting that the (alleged) Labour party sexual assaulter has resigned from their job at Parliament, which means hopefully he won't be turning up there making people feel unsafe in future. Good. But as with everything about this scandal, it just raises other questions. Most significantly: why the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • The moment I found out that you found out, I acted swiftly
    By Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern I am every bit as angry as you are. I am every bit as disappointed as you must be. The people with power, oversight and the ability to do something about these processes within the Labour Party should be ashamed. Whoever those people are, I ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    6 days ago
  • This is why people hate property developers
    Property developers think there is an "oversupply" of houses in Auckland:High turnover rates and falling prices may be a sign that there are too many new houses going in to some parts of Auckland, commentators say. [...] Property developer David Whitburn said there was a "bit of an oversupply" in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Australia to Pacific: “Fuck you, you can all drown”
    World leaders are meeting in New York in two weeks for the 2019 Climate Action Summit, where they are expected to announce new and more ambitious targets to stop the world from burning. But the Australian Prime Minister won't be there, despite being in the USA at the time:Scott Morrison ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Implausible ignorance
    Labour Party president Nigel Haworth resigned yesterday over the party's sexual assault scandal. But while that's good news, its unlikely to take away the stench of a coverup. Because according to Paula Bennett in Parliament yesterday, pretty much everyone in the Prime Minister's office was involved as well:I have been ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Labour’s Fatal Flaw.
     Two-Faced? Labour insiders' commitment to the neoliberal status quo puts them at odds with their party’s membership; its trade union affiliates; and a majority of Labour voters, but this only serves to strengthen the perception they have of themselves as a special elite. Among the lesser breeds, they’ll talk up a ...
    6 days ago
  • Ten reasons the Tories do NOT want an election
    There has been a lot of talk about Boris Johnson wanting an election, and he has blustered with great gusto about 'chicken' Jeremy Corbyn refusing one, but I think there are many reasons why he is secretly glad he has been refused the opportunity:The Tories are an utter rabble,tearing themselves ...
    7 days ago
  • Prorogation Illegal, rule Scottish judges
    Scottish appeal court judges have declared that Boris Johnson’s decision to suspend parliament in the run-up to the October Brexit deadline is unlawful. The three judges, chaired by Lord Carloway, Scotland’s most senior judge, overturned an earlier ruling that the courts did not have the powers to interfere in the prime ...
    7 days ago
  • Let me explain what I meant by Everyday New Zealanders
    By Simon Bridges. The following is a press release from the office of Simon Bridges, leader of The National Party. Key ora, New Zealand. Happy Maori Language Week. Look, I’m writing to you today because I want to clear something up. There’s been a lot of kerfuffle around some things ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Yes, the SIS is subject to the Public Records Act
    I understand there's some stuff going round about how the SIS "was removed from the list of public offices covered by the Public Records Act in 2017". The context of course being their records derived from US torture, which will be disposed of or sealed. The good news is that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • An evidence-based discussion of the Canadian fluoride/IQ study
    Dr. Christopher Labos and Jonathan Jarry discuss the recent Canadian fluoride/IQ research. They provide an expert analysis of the paper and its problems. Click on image to go to podcast. The critical debate about the recent ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Australia in denial
    Australia is burning down again, and meanwhile its natural disaster minister is denying climate change:Australia’s minister responsible for drought and natural disasters, David Littleproud, has said that he doesn’t “know if climate change is manmade”. Clarifying earlier comments that the question is “irrelevant” when considering the Coalition government’s response to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Philippines activist speaking on the Duterte tyranny
    Auckland Philippines Solidarity is excited to host Professor Judy Taguiwalo for a speaking tour of NZ in September. She is a well-known activist in the Philippines and was a political prisoner under the Marcos dictatorship. Professor Taguiwalo briefly served as a Cabinet member under President Duterte but was forced from ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Disgust
    I have no special insights to offer on the Labour sexual assault coverup. All I have is disgust. Disgust that an organisation could fail its people so badly. Disgust that they punished the victims rather than the perpetrator. Disgust that its party hacks are apparently blaming the victims for demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Speak Up for Women calls out Greens’ censorship
    This open letter to the Green Party was penned after an opinion piece by Jill Abigail, a feminist and founding member of the party, was censored by the Greens’ leadership. (Redline has reprinted her article here).The intolerance of the Green Party leaders and their acceptance of the misogyny of gender ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Member’s Day: End of Life Choice, part 3
    Today is a Member's day, and David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill continues its slow crawl through its committee stage. They're spending the whole day on it today, though the first hour is likely to be spent on voting left over from last time. After that they'll move on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Flight to Los Angeles turned back after passengers decide they don’t want to go anymore
    An ambitious plan to fly to Los Angeles petered out into a brief sight-seeing trip and a desire to return home and get some sleep before work tomorrow. Air New Zealand has confirmed a flight to Los Angeles last night was turned back about a quarter of the way into ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Indigenous Futures: defuturing and futuring – an analytical framework for policy development?
    There appears to be consensus – by omission – that the concept of indigenous futures should be accepted at face value. So I scavenged the internet to see if I could locate an academic descriptor or a framework around how we think about it as a concept, and whether it ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    1 week ago
  • Cadbury rumoured to be releasing the Pineapple Trump
    Here’s another novelty chocolate to shove in your gob, New Zealand Cadbury could be seeking to make itself great again with a rumoured new release: Pineapple Trumps, a spin on its classic chocolate-encased pineapple treat and do-it-yourself tooth remover. The global confectionery manufacturer and bumbling “before” character in an infomercial, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • The coming resource war.
    During my time in the Pentagon I had the privilege of sitting down with military leaders and defence and security officials from a variety of Latin American nations. Sometimes I was present as a subordinate assistant to a senior US defence department official, sometimes as part of a delegation that ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Māori Language Week with The Civilian
    Kia ora, Aotearoa. It’s that magical time of year. Te Wiki o te Reo Māori. In English, the week that frightens talk radio. As you probably know by now, all your favourite media outlets are participating, some more successfully than others. Stuff has changed its name to Puna for the ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Will Horizons act on climate change?
    Local body elections are coming up next month. And it looks like all Palmerston North candidates for Horizons (the Manawatu-Whanganui Regional Council) want to take action on climate change:Climate change is set to be a key issue in Palmerston North for the next three years if those wanting to get ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • BORA reform is stalled
    Eighteen months ago, the government promised to strengthen the Bill of Rights Act, by explicitly affirming the power of the courts to issue declarations of inconsistency and requiring Parliament to formally respond to them. So how's that going? I was curious, so I asked for all advice about the proposal. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Corbyn and Brexit
    As the Brexit saga staggers on, the focus is naturally enough on the Prime Minister and his attempts to achieve Brexit “do or die”. But the role played by the Leader of the Opposition is of almost equal interest and complexity. The first problem for Jeremy Corbyn is that he ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • A ditch for him to die in
    Last week, English Prime Minister Boris Johnson boldly declared that he would rather die be dead in a ditch than delay Brexit. Unfortunately for him, the UK parliament accepted the challenge, and promptly dug one for him. The "rebellion bill" requires him to ask for and secure yet another temporary ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Warning! Warning! Danger Jacinda Ardern! Danger Marama Davidson! Warning!
    Lost In Political Space: The most important takeaway from this latest Labour sexual assault scandal, which (if I may paraphrase Nixon’s White House counsel’s, John Dean’s, infamous description of Watergate) is “growing like a cancer” on the premiership, is the Labour Party organisation’s extraordinary professional paralysis in the face of ...
    1 week ago
  • Union solidarity with Ihumatao land occupation
    by Daphna Whitmore Every Sunday for the past two months unionists from First Union, with supporters from other unions, have set out to the Ihumatao land protest, put up gazebos and gas barbeques, and cooked food for a few hundred locals and supporters who have come from across the country. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: The wrong kind of trees?
    Newsroom today has an excellent, in-depth article on pine trees as carbon sinks. The TL;DR is that pine is really good at soaking up carbon, but people prefer far-less efficient native forests instead. Which is understandable, but there's two problems: firstly, we've pissed about so long on this problem that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • No freedom of speech in Turkey
    Canan Kaftancioglu is a Turkish politician and member of the opposition Republican People's Party (CHP). Like most modern politicians, she tweets, and uses the platform to criticise the Turkish government. She has criticised them over the death of a 14-year-old boy who was hit by a tear gas grenade during ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Speaker: Tadhg Stopford: Why I’m standing for the ADHB
    Hi there, just call me Tim.We face tough problems, and I’d like to help, because there are solutions.An Auckand District Health Board member has nominated me for as a candidate for the ADHB, because her MS-related pain and fatigue is reduced with hemp products from Rotorua.  Nothing else helped her. If I ...
    1 week ago
  • Good little vassals
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security has published their report on whether the SIS and GCSB had any complicity in American torture. And its damning. The pull quote is this:The Inquiry found both agencies, but to a much greater degree, the NZSIS, received many intelligence reports obtained from detainees who, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Who Shall We Turn To When God, And Uncle Sam, Cease To Defend New Zealand?
    Bewhiskered Cassandra? Professor Hugh White’s chilling suggestion, advanced to select collections of academic, military and diplomatic Kiwi experts over the course of the past week, is that the assumptions upon which Australia and New Zealand have built their foreign affairs and defence policies for practically their entire histories – are ...
    1 week ago
  • The Politics of Opposition
    For most of the time I was a British MP, my party was out of government – these were the Thatcher years, when it was hard for anyone else to get a look-in. As a front-bencher and shadow minister, I became familiar with the strategies required in a parliamentary democracy ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • More expert comments on the Canadian fluoride-IQ paper
    The Green et al (2019) fluoride/IQ is certainly controversial – as would be expected from its subject (see If at first you don’t succeed . . . statistical manipulation might help and Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear). Anti-fluoride campaigners have been actively promoting it ...
    1 week ago
  • The return to guerrilla war in Colombia
    by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh On August 29th a video in which veteran FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) commander Iván Márquez announced that they had taken up arms again was released. There was no delay in the reaction to it, from longtime Liberal Party figure and former president Uribe, for ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Air New Zealand identifies this enormous plot of unused land as possible second airport site
    Air New Zealand couldn’t believe its luck that this seemingly ideal piece of real estate had so far gone entirely unnoticed. Air New Zealand’s search for a site to build a second Auckland Airport may have made a breakthrough this afternoon, after employees scanning Google satellite imagery spotted a huge, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Redline on the Labour Party
    No-one on the anti-capitalist left in this country today puts forward a case that Labour is on the side of the working class.  There are certainly people who call themselves ‘socialist’ who do, but they are essentially liberals with vested interests in Labourism – often for career reasons. Nevertheless, there ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • New Fisk
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour’s failure
    When National was in government and fucking over the poor for the benefit of the rich, foodbanks were a growth industry. And now Labour is in charge, nothing has changed: A huge demand for emergency food parcels means the Auckland City Mission is struggling to prepare for the impending arrival ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Ardern attempts to vaccinate Clarke Gayford live on television to prove that it’s safe
    Gayford, pictured here on The Project, before things got wildly out of control. A bold public relations move by the Government to encourage parents to vaccinate their children has gone horribly wrong. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern appeared on tonight’s episode of Three’s The Project, where the plan was for her ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Has Mr. Whippy gone too far by parking on our front lawns?
    Mr. Whippy’s business model has driven it down a dark road of intimidation. Residents in major centres around the country are becoming disgruntled by the increasingly aggressive actions of purported ice cream company Mr. Whippy, who have taken to parking on people’s front lawns and doorsteps in a desperate attempt ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Cleaning up the water
    Today the government released its Action Plan for Healthy Waterways, aimed at cleaning up our lakes and rivers. Its actually quite good. There will be protection for wetlands, better standards for swimming spots, a requirement for continuous improvement, and better standards for wastewater and stormwater. But most importantly, there's a ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Fronting up
    Today I appeared before the Environment Committee to give an oral submission on the Zero Carbon Bill. Over 1,500 people have asked to appear in person, so they've divided into subcommittees and are off touring the country, giving people a five minute slot each. The other submitters were a mixed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear
    Anti-fluoride activists have some wealthy backers – they are erecting billboards misrepresenting the Canadian study on many New Zealand cities – and local authorities are ordering their removal because of their scaremongering. Many New Zealanders ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Democracy – I Don’t Think So
    So, those who “know best” have again done their worst. While constantly claiming to be the guardians of democracy and the constitution, and respecters of the 2016 referendum result, diehard Remainers (who have never brought themselves to believe that their advice could have been rejected) have striven might and main ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago

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