Paris as an excuse for more useless surveillance

Written By: - Date published: 7:02 am, November 17th, 2015 - 67 comments
Categories: Abuse of power, Spying, us politics, war - Tags: , , , ,

I guess this was predictable:

NZ fear over secret communication following Paris attacks

The Government and security experts say they are concerned about the ease with which the Paris attackers were able to communicate without being detected.

Changes in technology, such as new encrypted message systems, is making it increasingly easy to speak without alerting authorities.

Encryption is the latest bugbear of the security state. Banning it is a bad idea, but that’s a post for another time. In any case, encryption wasn’t the issue with the Paris attacks:

Paris attacks: John Key says undetectable communication is increasing

Undetectable communication is closer to the truth.

The amount of “dark communications” which New Zealand spy agencies are unable to intercept is increasing, Prime Minister John Key says.

Mr Key made the comments in response to reports that French intelligence did not pick up any communications which foreshadowed the massive, co-ordinated terror attacks in Paris on Friday night.

More of that in the footnote below.

New Zealand’s Security Intelligence Service (SIS) and Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB) are now under review. Mr Key was asked whether the review could lead to changes which addressed technological advances.

He said the issue was not the spy agencies’ capacity, because the legislation which governed the SIS and GCSB was already “reasonably broad”.

Isn’t that an interesting comment – Key effectively acknowledging that our spy agencies can already take anything they want.

“The issue is that this technology is very difficult to break into, essentially. So you are seeing people doing things that are a lot more sophisticated than in the past.”

Off on the wrong track again. The communications used in the case of the Paris attacks were as sophisticated as – a PS4:

Paris terrorists suspected of using PlayStation 4 to communicate

It’s being suggested that the communication tool of choice was the PlayStation 4. While that may seem like a surprising choice, from a terrorist’s point of view it’s one of the safer options. The authorities have been able to monitor standard communication channels (land lines, cell phones, email, Internet browsing) easily for years, but the IP-based voice communication offered on the PS4 is much more difficult to listen in on, as is any peer-to-peer systems used.

No encryption. No deep web / dark net buzzwords, a PS4. (Update: Disputed.)

The problem of monitoring communication on games consoles gets worse when you consider how many games have communication methods built-in. You can voice chat, message each other, or even write temporary messages on walls in a game like Call of Duty. How do you even begin to track such a wide variety of communications methods split across tens or even hundreds of different games?

That’s before you even get in to Steganography and associated methods. Trying to monitor all the possibilities would be like trying to perform significantly time consuming analysis of every frame of every video uploaded to YouTube.

So we’re going to have an ill informed debate about effective surveillance (which is impossible) and encryption (which is necessary). The tools that governments want won’t address the communication channels that smart terrorists are actually using. They can be used very effectively to spy on you and me though.


Footnote

Effective surveillance is mathematically impossible. The Paris attacks are a case in point:

Iraq Says It Warned France of ‘Imminent’ Attacks

The Associated Press is reporting that one day before the Paris attacks, Iraqi intelligence officials warned France and other anti-ISIS coalition allies that they should expect “imminent” assaults by the militant group. According to those intelligence officials, ISIS leader Abu Bakr al Baghdadi had ordered attacks “through bombings or assassinations or hostage taking in the coming days.”

In response, a French security official pointed out to the AP that they receive warnings like this “every day.”

67 comments on “Paris as an excuse for more useless surveillance ”

  1. sabine 1

    Waleed Aly from Australia, says this life on TV

    http://www.news.com.au/entertainment/tv/waleed-aly-hits-out-at-isis-over-paris-attacks-calls-them-weak/story-fn948wjf-1227611388541?utm_content=SocialFlow&utm_campaign=EditorialSF&utm_source=News.com.au&utm_medium=Facebook

    Quote: He said this “evil organisation” believes if they can make Muslims the enemy of the West, then Muslims in France and England and America and here in Australia will have nowhere to turn but to ISIL.
    “That was exactly their strategy in Iraq,” he said. “And now they want it to go global.
    “Saying that out loud, it is both dumbfounding in its stupidity and bloodcurdling in its barbarity. “We are all feeling a million raging emotions right now. I am angry at these terrorists. I am sickened by the violence and I am crushed for the families that have been left behind, but, you know what, I will not be manipulated.
    “We all need to come together. I know how that sounds. I know it is a cliche, but it is also true because it is exactly what ISIL doesn’t want.
    “So, if you are a member of Parliament or a has-been member of Parliament preaching hate at a time when what we actually need is more love — you are helping ISIL. They have told us that. If you are a Muslim leader telling your community they have no place here or basically them saying the same thing — you are helping ISIL.
    “They have told us that. If you are just someone with a Facebook or Twitter account firing off misguided messages of hate, you are helping ISIL — They have told us that.
    “I am pretty sure that right now none of us wants to help these b*stards.”

    • RedLogix 1.1

      Yes I read that an hour or so ago, and was thinking of re-posting it myself. Thanks for beating me to it.

      While it’s not a cool cerebral analysis, Waleed has made his case with rigor and balance.

      I understand anger. It is part of the natural and necessary response to Paris. But do not let yourself be manipulated into letting a healthy anger transform into a corrosive hatred.

      Required reading – and the best response to all the war-mongers posting here.

      Your hatred is helping ISIL.

      • BLiP 1.1.1

        Hatred, love, fear . . . all emotions, in fact, stirred up by the Paris outrage are currently being exploited by governments in order to further clamp down.

      • Olwyn 1.1.2

        I have for some time thought that there is an element in the west that is at war on all fronts – that their geopolitical ambitions and their economic ambitions work at odds. In general, people who are treated as outcasts or enemies welcome ideas and movements that promise liberation. It seems inane to nurture division, hatred and privation within your own society, and then suppose that they will all come together to support you as you try to inflict the roughly same formula on other societies. And that other societies, having seen the divisions and privations in yours, will somehow welcome this.

    • Bill 1.2

      The problem with that take is that it assumes Isil to be some multi-tentacled strategic octopus. It isn’t. There is an ideology and there are conditions that make that ideology ‘appealing’ to people who may (and probably) have no contact with Isil.

      eg – Did a believer in state communisim have to have any dealings with Moscow? Did propaganda try to have us believe that IRA terrorists were in contact with the Vatican? Did suffragettes have some communication line to women’s central?

  2. Paul 2

    Benjamin Franklin

    “Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.”

  3. BLiP 3

    Yeah, like terrorists didn’t work it out a wee while ago that communications had to go dark. Its not like ISIS is entirely uneducated about the use of computer technology.

    Trivia Question: when did the Director of the FBI say . . .

    . . . The looming spectre of the widespread use of robust, virtually uncrackable encryption is one of the most difficult problems confronting law enforcement . . . At stake are some of our most valuable and reliable investigative techniques, and the public safety of our citizens. We believe that unless a balanced approach to encryption is adopted that includes a viable key management infrastructure, the ability of law enforcement to investigate and sometimes prevent the most serious crimes and terrorism will be severely impaired . . .

    ^^^ 1997.

    The sniveling MSM parroting of the GCSB’s propaganda on this issue is brazen. Typically, the worst example was Mike Hosking who had the entirely unjustified temerity to suggest Edward Snowden was somehow a part of the problem and, by implication, had blood on his hands. Its as if Hosking has never even considered one of the prime messages Snowden delivered: total surveillance results in impending terrorist actions going unnoticed, total surveillance as we have now has actually put people at greater risk.

  4. Tracey 4

    They did not carry out the acts in Paris but it won’t stop Politicians and their neatly placed mouthpieces using them…

    Pushing the fear hot button

    “When a politician talks about almost everything in terms of terrorism, or communism, or crime, or threats to “national security” or “our way of life,” and so on, that politician is pushing the fear hot button. It’s very easy to push. Just use a few of the right trigger words, throw in a dash of plausibility, and the subconsciousness is automatically hoodwinked into a state of fear, or at least into wondering if there is something out there to fear. Whether or not an enemy actually is out there doesn’t matter—what matters is that we think there might be one. Fear clouds the judgment, making it all the harder to discern whether there really is an enemy out there. Because we cannot be sure, we play it safe and assume there is at least some risk. Since people are risk averse, the ploy works and we become believers. We have been influenced by statements of what might be lurking out there. Our fear hot button has been pushed and it worked.”

    Imagine what a powerful weapon fear becomes when people have just been killed in Paris…

    And then consider that some of these attackers were on a radar already, some were checked and let go after the event. Detain everyone on suspicion is the next step?

  5. Tracey 5

    I thought John Key gave up the post of Head of Spy Agencies?

    • Grindlebottom 5.1

      Yes he did. Chris Finlayson is Minister for Security Intelligence Services. But PMs frequently comment on other MInisters’ portfolio issues,

      • Tracey 5.1.1

        I know but its like Key knows more about our secret servces since he stopped being responsble for them.

      • Smilin 5.1.2

        He, Key just cant stay out of the limelight on any issue which makes you wonder what the rest of the caucus are doing -navel gazing possibly or just servants of the mighty one

  6. esoteric pineapples 6

    Isn’t one of the primary aims of a terrorist organisation who plants bombs etc to actually encourage states to repress their citizenry, so that the citizens actually rebel against the government?

    Also, if you were a government who wanted to spy on your own citizens, all you need is some sort of pretext such as a terrorist attack. When civil libertarians argue against the spying, they can be accused of supporting terrorists. Pretty much the same argument as the Prime Minister was using regarding Christmas Island in Parliament.

  7. Bill 8

    Sorry, but I’m not buying any of this. Why would the guys in Paris and Belgium have had to speak to anyone in Syria or Isis?

    From the post.

    …French intelligence did not pick up any communications which foreshadowed the massive, co-ordinated terror attacks in Paris…

    Occams Razor would suggest that was because there was no communication.

    It’s being suggested that the communication tool of choice was… assumes there was a need for communication – but why would there be?

    Let me put it by way of a shaky analogous example – shaky because it presents the propaganda of the time as real.

    Imagine terrorism in Ireland in the 80s. The news told us that it was all down to a religious divide and that the religion on the ‘other side’ was Catholicism. Catholicism was and is centred in the Vatican City. Now, lets imagine that some Irish person committed an act of terrorism on a genuinely religious basis. Are we to believe they could only have done so after receiving centralised instructions or having engaged in lengthy correspondence with either Buckingham Palace or the Vatican?

    Well no, of course not.

    And that’s given, that back in the 80s the need for wider and deeper communication with acknowledged authorities (to access bomb expertise, gun procurement, etc) would have been greater then given no internet loaded with info, sources and ideas.

    French and Belgium nationals, like our imaginary Irish example, hook their action to an ideology and then act in the name of that ideology. There is no need for central control or a huge volume of communication.

    • Anno1701 8.1

      “Are we to believe they could only have done so after receiving centralised instructions or having engaged in lengthy correspondence with either Buckingham Palace or the Vatican? ”

      There was actual proven collusion between UK security forces( “Buckingham palace” ) and Loyalist paramilitaries in Northen Ireland

      http://www.irishtimes.com/news/ireland/irish-news/london-told-it-must-face-up-to-fact-of-collusion-in-north-1.2250653

      http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/northern-ireland/britains-secret-terror-deals-truly-disturbing-bbc-panorama-allegations-of-collusion-must-be-fully-investigated-says-amnesty-international-31261593.html

    • Colonial Viper 8.2

      …French intelligence did not pick up any communications which foreshadowed the massive, co-ordinated terror attacks in Paris…

      Occams Razor would suggest that was because there was no communication.

      Basic Op Sec would suggest that if there was any connection with ISIL Syrian leadership that it was all organised months ago and compartmentalised so that the tactical units in France never needed to talk to anyone in Syria again.

      • Bill 8.2.1

        I’m picking there was no contact, or at most, very minimal contact. Isil in Syria decided to hit cafe goers, a rock concert and a football match?

        I. don’t. think. so.

        • Colonial Viper 8.2.1.1

          I don’t think our comments necessarily preclude each other.

          A football match between France and Germany that senior politicians and officials from both countries were at.

          A concert by an American rock band.

          Final target selection could have been totally under local control, with the broad strokes of the op previously defined in Syria many months ago.

    • joe90 8.3

      Why would the guys in Paris and Belgium have had to speak to anyone in Syria or Isis?

      Indeed.

      Hit soft targets. “Diversify and widen the vexation strikes against the crusader-Zionist enemy in every place in the Islamic world, and even outside of it if possible, so as to disperse the efforts of the alliance of the enemy and thus drain it to the greatest extent possible.”

      Strike when potential victims have their guard down. Sow fear in general populations, damage economies. “If a tourist resort that the crusaders patronise … is hit, all of the tourist resorts in all of the states of the world will have to be secured by the work of additional forces, which are double the ordinary amount, and a huge increase in spending.”

      Consider reports suggesting a 15-year-old was involved in Friday’s atrocity. “Capture the rebelliousness of youth, their energy and idealism, and their readiness for self-sacrifice, while fools preach ‘moderation’ (wasatiyyah), security and avoidance of risk.”

      http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/nov/15/terrorists-isis?

    • Mike the Savage One 8.4

      You raise some valid points, Bill, it is blinkered to think that these terrorists took their actions by reacting upon some “orders” from Raqqa in Syria, or that they had to communicate extensively via phone and/or internet to organise what they did. I fear there are enough “desperados” and fanatic extremists, and also some who genuinely believe they act in total righteousness, who are prepared to commit such attacks. Getting the guns and what else is needed takes a bit of an effort, but hey, how many stolen army, police and home based weapons are somewhere in circulation or storage in New Zealand?

      If seriously committed, any few or sole persons can get their hands at some automatic guns, on the black market or by burgling a place, and getting rental cars is hardly requiring much criminal energy, most certainly not dependent on some “instructions” from a faraway place in Syria. They can also easily find jihadist, black flags with some Arabic words by the Prophet on, or get them printed in any flat, house or garage with no problem.

      By that I do not rule out that there is some significant international communications via the “black web” and so, between like minded, who have plans to take certain actions.

      Even Bin Laden’s followers did all to avoid using the internet, after 9/11, and found ways to communicate, and much went on without detection.

      • Bill 8.4.1

        Manchester. 1980s. Want a gun. Who do I speak to? It’s backing up drug shit.

        Do I speak to a Columbian drug lord?

        Nope.

        Paris. 2015. I want a gun and some bomb material. Who do I speak to? It’s backing up some expreession of desperation/hopelessness.

        Do I speak to some Isil commander in Syria?

        Nope.

    • Draco T Bastard 8.5

      It’s being suggested that the communication tool of choice was… assumes there was a need for communication – but why would there be?

      A team always needs to communicate. The question is more how they communicated and if those communications could have been picked up which they probably couldn’t even with the mass surveillance that governments engage in now..

      You’re making the assumption that the authorities are assuming centralised control rather than a decentralised cell structure carrying out an operation. Unlikely that but the reporting is.

      • exkiwiforces 8.5.1

        It’s call safe hand/ dead letter drops, snail mail or need to know and enforcing strict comms silence. Just ask Pablo over Kiwipolitico or anybody who is ex-military

  8. alwyn 9

    The gist of this post appears to be the view that we shouldn’t carry out surveillance because it is completely useless.

    Try reading this article in the Dom/Post
    http://www.stuff.co.nz/world/paris-attacks/74097018/paris-attacks-belgian-man-abdelhamid-abaaoud-named-as-mastermind
    If the facts in this story are correct perhaps you would tell us how many other attacks would have gone ahead and how many people would have been killed if we had carried out no attempts to keep track of these people at all?
    We see such statements in the story as
    “Abaaoud was also believed to have been behind thwarted plans to attack a Paris-bound high-speed train and Paris area church, a French official said” Thwarted you will note.
    “Abaaoud was named as the head of a jihadi cell broken up by Belgian police in January, “hours or days” before a planned attack to kill police officers.” The attack appears to be have been prevented.

    I have seen other stories listing foiled attempts at terrorism. Should we do nothing because some attempts succeed?

    • r0b 9.1

      Targeted surveillance of known threats makes sense. Mass surveillance of everyone does not. Did you read the linked piece?

      http://thestandard.org.nz/the-mathematics-of-surveillance/

    • One Anonymous Bloke 9.2

      Clearly the only alternative to spying on everyone is to spy on no-one. No, wait, this just in: Alwyn’s false dichotomy is very very stupid.

    • Colonial Viper 9.3

      If the facts in this story are correct perhaps you would tell us how many other attacks would have gone ahead and how many people would have been killed if we had carried out no attempts to keep track of these people at all?

      In Congressional hearings in 2012 or 2013 the answer to your question was pretty clear: NSA mass surveillance had prevented zero terrorist attacks.

      This is not a surprise because NSA mass surveillance is designed as a tool of local population control (and building up security state fiefdoms), not as an anti-terrorist measure.

  9. theDude 10

    By Armstrong;
    “It Is Time to Knock off the Bullshit About Surveillance for Terrorism”

    http://www.armstrongeconomics.com/archives/39316

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2015-11-15/martin-armstrong-rages-its-time-knock-bs-about-surveillance-terrorism

    I guess we ill have to wait and see.

  10. infused 11

    First, PS4 was a load of shit, second, anyone can intercept encrypted data, but decrypting it is another story.

    You are confusing two different things here with your interpenetration of Key’s comments.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 11.1

      Interpenetration? Is that like defeating extremism by winning hearts and minds rather than relying on mass-murder and panty-sniffing?

      • infused 11.1.1

        You’d know.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 11.1.1.1

          I wouldn’t go that far: I just think that after a decade of deranged wingnut vengeance fantasies it’s past time to try something sane instead.

          Oh, and we have always been at war with North Korea 😆

          • infused 11.1.1.1.1

            I don’t think you quite grasp what I said originally. I was specifically talking about encryption.

            One interesting thing to note: If you do use strong encryption, expect to be monitored.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 11.1.1.1.1.1

              Oh I grasped it perfectly thanks.

              As for being monitored, chicken, meet egg. How do the curtain-twitching department know I’m using (say) email encryption over and above that provided by ISPs, unless they’re already watching?

              • infused

                No ISP has any type of encryption as far as I know. Unless you are talking about SSL for email? Mail stored on the DB is most likely unencrypted.

                And of course they are watching. GCSB has monitoring at most gateways and exchanges in NZ.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  Apart from SSL, Google said that about 65 per cent of the messages sent by its Gmail users are encrypted…

                  So, assuming you’re right, and the GCSB is illegally hoovering up everything in direct contradiction of the Prime Minister’s craven mendacity, that’s an awful lot of “monitoring”. I expect the courts are flat our processing all the warrants 🙄

                  • infused

                    Yeah, again, you are confusing things. Hence my original post.

                    1) They only encrypt the transport, not the storage.
                    2) The gateway monitoring is only active when triggered by an alert, or they are actively searching for something. IE, pass-through mode.

                    They don’t just mass store data, as it’s physically impossible for a small country like NZ.

                    Encrypting storage is a whole different ball game and very few companies are going to do that. The biggest issue is you generally can never restore any data unless you have the key pairs. So it makes data recovery etc impossible.

          • alwyn 11.1.1.1.2

            “Oh, and we have always been at war with North Korea”

            Actually we have never been at war with North Korea.
            Although it is called the Korean War, and we are still in an armistice, no war was ever actually declared. It was a UN Police Action to which we contributed troops, not an official war.
            I doubt if the people who served there could tell the difference.

  11. Colonial Viper 12

    There is a very odd thing about the Paris attacks – up to 7 suicide bombers exploded their suicide vests…but the explosions themselves resulted in very few casualties. Compare that to the pre-election political rally in Ankara where two suicide bombs killed just over 100 people.

    • infused 12.1

      Feel free to go watch the liveleak videos if you’d like to see limbs etc in-case you are one of those people who though this was a conspiracy (there are a few).

  12. Colonial Viper 13

    Also – the Labour Party voted for John Key’s anti-terrorism/spying legislation earlier this year.

    They’re all on the same side.

    • infused 13.1

      Once you actually see what these guys collect, you’d probably change your mind.

      • Colonial Viper 13.1.1

        yeah, underwear pics and details of peoples affairs, who their ex-spouses are sleeping with, your blood test results and latest CV, stored into perpetuity.

  13. Colonial Viper 14

    ISPs have to install whatever surveillance devices required by the intelligence services. If the US example is anything to go by, the ISPs don’t complain because they are well paid to do so.

    • infused 14.1

      Well they aren’t paid well at all actually… And they are not generally installed at the ISP level. All ISPs connect to exchanges, like WIX. That’s where they are placed, and the international gateways like Southern Cross.

  14. Mike the Savage One 15

    So after passing GCSB law amendments to give the agency more powers to gather information on ordinary New Zealanders, and to also justify that they cooperate even more with other agencies under the 5 Eyes network, such as the US NSA, which has gathered huge amounts of metadata on ordinary people’s phone and internet use, we are now told by the PM, all that does not do what they claimed it should do.

    So yet again, the Prime Minister has revealed that he is a total hypocrite if not a blatant liar, and the media just reports on it, and does not raise further questions.

    And the people are fed endless media reports on the terror attacks in Paris, and their consequences, now the bulk of news on TV every evening, so they think, we need more surveillance.

    I feel treated like an ass that has been kicked too many times, when do others, and when do the casual, ignorant, silent majority finally get it, wake up, and vote this “criminal” lot out? We should not even wait that long, in any society where people used their brains, bothered to care, and stood up for their rights, there should by now be mass protests out in the streets, but I see none here in NZ.

    http://m.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11546206

  15. Ad 16

    I think the post is arguing too much from a position of global safety and of having not been touched by the damage on New Zealand soil from non-state terrorism. Australia has had too many dead in Bali, Sydney and elsewhere for it to be simply a principle to argue over.

    We have rightly rounded on our grossly under-regulated security apparatus, and its ridiculous new legal powers. SIS and GCSB leaders and their performance should have full scrutiny to a fully open Select Committee, with the media right there.

    But the left need to deal with the necessity of a security apparatus for New Zealand.

    If the ISIS threat continues to escalate globally, as it seems to be, we are going to have to prepare for state-licensed mosques at a minimum. We have state-regulated schools here so it’s not a great leap.

    The price of freedom in a society is regulation.

  16. Draco T Bastard 17

    Off on the wrong track again. The communications used in the case of the Paris attacks were as sophisticated as – a PS4:

    LOL

    There was concern when Apple first launched it’s G4 computer back 1999 that could do 1 giga FLOPS because of it’s potential to do real time encryption and thus it’s potential to help rogue nations to build up their military potential. Apple’s marketing department had a great time but:

    A final note on how far we’ve come: while I couldn’t find listed MTOPS ratings for the iPhone 5s, a cursory calculation using comparable Geekbench scores coupled with this chart from Intel suggests that the current iPhone has a rating of around 40,000 MTOPS.

    The average run of the mill phone makes the G4 look like a friggen calculator and yet that was all that was needed to ensure communications that couldn’t be listened to.

    The PS4’s computing power is far beyond what a phone is capable of.

  17. John Schmidt 18

    Not mentioned because it’s inconvenient is the number of terrorist events that have been thwarted that has been mentioned briefly in the public domain, some of these events would have been bigger than Paris had they been succesful. Briefly because it appears no one wants to dwell on good news or if it does not fit with one’s ideology. Would not surprise me if there are other events that never made it to the public domain. If you look at what has happened the rush to encryption began with wiki leaks and accelerated with Snowden revelations. So yes those who wish society harm have learnt a lot from all the revelations so it could be argued wiki leaks and Snowden now have blood on their hands.
    The question for society now is how many deaths are acceptable because while many threats are thwarted some are succesful. It’s impossible to be 100% safe. To eliminate the threat entirely means losing an unacceptable level of personal privacy. So the question remains are we happy as a society to accept the current level of deaths or do we reduce this through loss of personal freedom or do we accept an increasing loss by reducing the ability of the state in keeping us safe.

  18. RichardK 19

    Couple things i’d like to say n this.

    As far as i am aware military hardware is about 20 years more advanced than civilian.

    Bearing that in mind if the military have already a well functioning quantum computer even at it’s basist, there will be no encryption it could not crack in almost realtime.

    Quantum computers = scary in the wrong hands and the likelihood of the military having this is high, or if not now, within the next few years.

    and as of today when our gov and media seem complacent in not even reporting the sneaky antics and laws being passed under ugency, making laws again to cover their errors, with more lack of media coverage to hide it from the public.

    The fear i have is when governments become this powerful and agenda driven guerilla wars break out, terrorism becomes a national problem not international.

    The whole system currently under national and everything they do is crazy as batshit we do as we please, fuck you, batshit crazy..

    They really need to go before their is civil disorder

  19. greywarshark 20

    Vladimir Putin has been doing some noteworthy surveillance.
    16 November 2015
    Putin: ISIS financed from 40 countries, including G20 members
    https://www.rt.com/news/322305-isis-financed-40-countries/

    “Putin also spoke of the urgent need to curb the illegal oil trade by IS”.
    “I’ve shown our colleagues photos taken from space and from aircraft which clearly demonstrate the scale of the illegal trade in oil and petroleum products,” he said.
    “The motorcade of refueling vehicles stretched for dozens of kilometers, so that from a height of 4,000 to 5,000 meters they stretch beyond the horizon,” Putin added, comparing the convoy to gas and oil pipeline systems…..

    President Vladimir Putin says he’s shared Russian intelligence data on Islamic State financing with his G20 colleagues: the terrorists appear to be financed from 40 countries, including some G20 member states.
    During the summit, “I provided examples based on our data on the financing of different Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) units by private individuals. This money, as we have established, comes from 40 countries and, there are some of the G20 members among them,” Putin told the journalists….

    Putin reiterated Russia’s readiness to support armed opposition in Syria in its efforts to fight Islamic State.
    “Some armed opposition groups consider it possible to begin active operations against IS with Russia’s support. And we are ready to provide such support from the air. If it happens it could become a good basis for the subsequent work on a political settlement,” he said.
    “We really need support from the US, European nations, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Iran,” the president added.”

  20. Gabby 21

    You’ve got to wonder how these convoys have escaped the attention of the yankers.

  21. Liberal Realist 22

    Read an article yesterday that suggests there was a massive cyber attack on Paris infrastructure 48 hours before the attacks which blinded police surveillance.

    “French Security Left Blind During Paris Attacks

    Paul Craig Roberts

    I have received a report from European security that there was a massive cyber attack on French systems 48 hours prior to and during the Paris attacks. Among other things, the attack took down the French mobile data network and blinded police surveillance The attack was not a straightforward DDOS attack but a sophisticated attack that targeted a weakness in infrastructure hardware.

    Such an attack is beyond the capability of most organizations and requires capability that is unlikely to be in ISIL’s arsenal. An attack on this scale is difficult to pull off without authorities getting wind of it. The coordination required suggests state involvement.”

    The article does state that it is unknown if this information is credible. I’m not familiar with this author however his resume (in the about section) looks to have credibility.

    If a cyber attack did happen as this article suggest there are some very big questions to ask. We’ll probably never know.

    From here:
    https://tinyurl.com/ngqehdc

  22. sabine 23

    considering that all the terrorists were from France or Belgium, one wonders when they are starting to rain down bombs on the poor ghettos outside of Paris and Brussels. Cause clearly the terrorism is home grown.
    The ideology is stolen from Daesh, but the executioners were not Syrian Refugees.

  23. Reminds me to reinstall my Encryption software again!

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  • Fact Brief – Is ocean acidification from human activities enough to impact marine ecosystems?
    Skeptical Science is partnering with Gigafact to produce fact briefs — bite-sized fact checks of trending claims. This fact brief was written by Sue Bin Park in collaboration with members from the Skeptical Science team. You can submit claims you think need checking via the tipline. Is ocean acidification from human ...
    2 hours ago
  • Happiness is a Warm Gun
    She's not a girl who misses muchDo do do do do do, oh yeahShe's well-acquainted with the touch of the velvet handLike a lizard on a window paneI wouldn’t associate ACT with warmth, other than a certain fabled, notoriously hot, destination where surely they’re heading and many would like them ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    9 hours ago
  • Still doing a good 20
    Hello! Here comes the Saturday edition of More Than A Feilding, catching you up on the past somewhat interrupted week. Still on the move!Share Read more ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    15 hours ago
  • Coalition of the Unwilling?
    What does Budget 2024 tell us about the current government? Muddle on?Coalition governments are not new. About 50 percent of the time since the first MMP election, there has been a minority government, usually with allied parties holding ministerial portfolios outside cabinets. For 10 percent of the time there was ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 day ago
  • Of red flags and warning signs in comments on social media
    Somewhat surprisingly for what is regarded as a network of professionals, climate science misinformation is getting shared on LinkedIn, joining other channels where this is happening. Several of our recent posts published on LinkedIn have attracted the ire of various commenters who apparently are in denial about human-caused climate change. Based ...
    1 day ago
  • All good, still
    1. On what subject is Paul Henry even remotely worth giving the time of day?a. The state of our nationb. The state of the ACT partyc. How to freak out potential buyers of your gin palace by baking the remains of your deceased parent into its fittings2. Now that New ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 day ago
  • The looting is the point
    Last time National was in power, they looted the state, privatising public assets and signing hugely wasteful public-private partnership (PPP) contracts which saw foreign consortiums provide substandard infrastructure while gouging us for profits. You only have to look at the ongoing fiasco of Transmission Gully to see how it was ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • The Illusion of Power: How Local Government Bureaucrats Overawe Democratically-Elected Councillors..
    The Democratic Façade Of Local Government: Our district and city councillors are democratically elected to govern their communities on one very strict condition – that they never, ever, under any circumstances, attempt to do so.A DISINTEGRATION OF LOYALTIES on the Wellington City Council has left Mayor Tory Whanau without a ...
    1 day ago
  • Lowlights & Bright Spots
    I can feel the lowlights coming over meI can feel the lowlights, from the state I’m inI can see the light now even thought it’s dimA little glow on the horizonAnother week of lowlights from our government, with the odd bright spot and a glow on the horizon. The light ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 day ago
  • Weekly Roundup 14-June-2024
    Another week, another roundup of things that caught our eye on our favourite topics of transport, housing and how to make cities a little bit greater. This Week in Greater Auckland On Monday, Connor wrote about Kāinga Ora’s role as an urban development agency Tuesday’s guest post by ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    2 days ago
  • The Hoon around the week to June 14
    Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The podcast above of the weekly ‘hoon’ webinar for paying subscribers features co-hosts and talking with:The Kākā’s climate correspondent about the National-ACT-NZ First Government’s moves this week to take farming out of the ETS and encourage more mining and oil and ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 days ago
  • Climate policy axed in broad daylight, while taxpayer liabilities grow in the dark
    In 2019, Shane Jones addressed the “50 Shades of Green” protest at Parliament: Now he is part of a government giving those farmers a pass on becoming part of the ETS, as well as threatening to lock in offshore oil exploration and mining for decades. Photo: Lynn GrievesonTL;DR: Here’s the ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 days ago
  • Rage Bait!
    Hi,Today’s newsletter is all about how easy it is to get sucked into “rage bait” online, and how easy it is to get played.But first I wanted to share something that elicited the exact opposite of rage in me — something that made me feel incredibly proud, whilst also making ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    2 days ago
  • Bernard's Dawn Chorus and pick 'n' mix for Friday, June 14
    Seymour said lower speed limits “drained the joy from life as people were forced to follow rules they knew made no sense.” File Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: My six things to note in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy around housing, climate and poverty on Friday, June 14 were:The National/ACT/NZ First ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 days ago
  • Friendly but frank talks with China Premier
    It sounded like the best word to describe yesterday’s talks between Chinese Premier Li Qiang and his heavyweight delegation of Ministers and officials and Prime Minister Christopher Luxon and New Zealand Ministers and officials was “frank.” But it was the kind of frankness that friends can indulge in. It ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    2 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #24 2024
    Open access notables Wildfire smoke impacts lake ecosystems, Farruggia et al., Global Change Biology: We introduce the concept of the lake smoke-day, or the number of days any given lake is exposed to smoke in any given fire season, and quantify the total lake smoke-day exposure in North America from 2019 ...
    2 days ago
  • Geoffrey Miller: China’s message to New Zealand – don’t put it all at risk
    Don’t put it all at risk. That’s likely to be the take-home message for New Zealand Prime Minister Christopher Luxon in his meetings with Li Qiang, the Chinese Premier. Li’s visit to Wellington this week is the highest-ranking visit by a Chinese official since 2017. The trip down under – ...
    Democracy ProjectBy Geoffrey Miller
    2 days ago
  • The Real Thing
    I know the feelingIt is the real thingThe essence of the soulThe perfect momentThat golden momentI know you feel it tooI know the feelingIt is the real thingYou can't refuse the embraceNo?Sometimes we face the things we most dislike. A phobia or fear that must be confronted so it doesn’t ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    2 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on how moderates empower the political right
    Struth, what a week. Having made sure the rural sector won’t have to pay any time soon for its pollution, PM Christopher Luxon yesterday chose Fieldays 2024 to launch a parliamentary inquiry into rural banking services, to see how the banks have been treating farmers faced with high interest rates. ...
    2 days ago
  • Bernard's Dawn Chorus and pick 'n' mix for Thursday, June 13
    In April, 17,656 people left Aotearoa-NZ to live overseas, averaging 588 a day, with just over half of those likely to have gone to Australia. Photo: Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: My six things to note in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy around housing, climate and poverty on Thursday, June 13 ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    3 days ago
  • Our guide to having your say on the draft RLTP 2024
    Auckland’s draft Regional Land Transport Plan (RLTP) 2024 is open for feedback – and you only have until Monday 17 June to submit. Do it! Join the thousands of Aucklanders who are speaking up for wise strategic investment that will dig us out of traffic and give us easy and ...
    Greater AucklandBy Connor Sharp
    3 days ago
  • The China puzzle
    Chinese Premier Li Qiang arrives in Wellington today for a three-day visit to the country. The visit will take place amid uncertainty about the future of the New Zealand-China relationship. Li hosted a formal welcome and then lunch for then-Prime Minister Chris Hipkins in Beijing a year ago. The pair ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    3 days ago
  • Fossil fuels are shredding our democracy
    This is a re-post of an article from the Climate Brink by Andrew Dessler published on June 3, 2024. I have an oped in the New York Times (gift link) about this. For a long time, a common refrain about the energy transition was that renewable energy needed to become ...
    3 days ago
  • Life at 20 kilometres an hour
    We are still in France, getting from A to B.Possibly for only another week, though; Switzerland and Germany are looming now. On we pedal, towards Budapest, at about 20 km per hour.What are are mostly doing is inhaling a country, loving its ways and its food. Rolling, talking, quietly thinking. ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    3 days ago
  • Hipkins is still useless
    The big problem with the last Labour government was that they were chickenshits who did nothing with the absolute majority we had given them. They governed as if they were scared of their own shadows, afraid of making decisions lest it upset someone - usually someone who would never have ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Exercising with the IDF.
    This morning I did something I seldom do, I looked at the Twitter newsfeed. Normally I take the approach of something that I’m not sure is an American urban legend, or genuinely something kids do over there. The infamous bag of dog poo on the front porch, set it on ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    3 days ago
  • Helm Hammerhand Anime: First Pictures and an Old English ‘Hera’
    We have some news on the upcoming War of the Rohirrim anime. It will apparently be two and a half hours in length, with Peter Jackson as Executive Producer, and Helm’s daughter Hera will be the main character. Also, pictures: The bloke in the middle picture is Freca’s ...
    3 days ago
  • Farmers get free pass on climate AND get subsidies
    The cows will keep burping and farting and climate change will keep accelerating - but farmers can stop worrying about being included in the ETS. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: My six things to note in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy around housing, climate and poverty on Wednesday, June 12 were:The ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • Six ideas to secure Te Huia’s Future
    This is a guest post by our friend Darren Davis. It originally appeared on his excellent blog, Adventures in Transitland, which features “musings about public transport and other cool stuff in Aotearoa/ New Zealand and around the globe.” With Te Huia now having funding secure through to 2026, now is ...
    Greater AucklandBy Darren Davis
    4 days ago
  • The methane waka sinks
    In some ways, there may be less than meets the eye to the Government announcement yesterday that the He Waka Eke Noa proposal for farmers to pay for greenhouse gas emissions has been scrapped. The spectre of farmers still having to pay at some point in the future remains. That, ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    4 days ago
  • At a glance – Does positive feedback necessarily mean runaway warming?
    On February 14, 2023 we announced our Rebuttal Update Project. This included an ask for feedback about the added "At a glance" section in the updated basic rebuttal versions. This weekly blog post series highlights this new section of one of the updated basic rebuttal versions and serves as a ...
    4 days ago
  • Climate Change: Farmers get what they wanted – for now
    Since entering office, National has unravelled practically every climate policy, leaving us with no effective way of reducing emissions or meeting our emissions budgets beyond magical thinking around the ETS. And today they've announced another step: removing agriculture entirely. At present, following the complete failure of he waka eka noa, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Presumed Innocent?
    The blue billionaireDistraction no interactionOr movement outside these glazed over eyesThe new great divideFew fight the tide to be glorifiedBut will he be satisfied?Can we accept this without zoom?The elephant in the roomNot much happens in politics on a Monday. Bugger all in fact. Although yesterday Christopher Luxon found he ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    4 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on our doomed love affair with oil and gas
    What if New Zealand threw a fossil fuel party, and nobody came? On the weekend, Resources Minister Shane Jones sent out the invitations and strung up the balloons, but will anyone really want to invest big time in resuming oil and gas exploration in our corner of the planet? Yes, ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    4 days ago
  • Building better housing insights
    This is a guest post by Meredith Dale, senior urban designer and strategist at The Urban Advisory. There’s a saying that goes something like: ‘what you measure is what you value’. An RNZ article last week claimed that Auckland was ‘hurting’ because of a more affordable supply of homes, particularly townhouses ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    5 days ago
  • Putin would be proud of them
    A Prime Minister directs his public service to inquire into the actions of the opposition political party which is his harshest critic. Something from Orban's Hungary, or Putin's Russia? No, its happening right here in Aotearoa: Prime Minister Christopher Luxon has announced the Public Service Commission will launch an ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Resources for debunking common solar and wind myths
    This is a repost from a Yale Climate Connections article by SueEllen Campbell published on June 3, 2024. The articles listed can help you tell fact from fiction when it comes to solar and wind energy. Some statements you hear about solar and wind energy are just plain false. ...
    5 days ago
  • Juggernaut
    Politics were going on all around us yesterday, and we barely noticed, rolling along canal paths, eating baguettes. It wasn’t until my mate got to the headlines last night that we learned there had been a dismayingly strong far right result in the EU elections and Macron had called a ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    5 days ago
  • Numbers Game.
    Respect Existence, Or Expect Resistance? There may well have been 50,000 pairs of feet “Marching For Nature” down Auckland’s Queen Street on Saturday afternoon, but the figure that impresses the Coalition Government is the 1,450,000 pairs of Auckland feet that were somewhere else.IN THE ERA OF DRONES and Artificial Intelligence, ...
    5 days ago
  • Media Link: AVFA on post-colonial blowback.
    Selwyn Manning and I discuss varieties of post colonial blowback and the implications its has for the rise of the Global South. Counties discussed include Palestine/Israel, France/New Caledonia, England/India, apartheid/post-apartheid South Africa and post-colonial New Zealand. It is a bit … Continue reading ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    5 days ago
  • Policy by panic
    Back in March, Ombudsman Peter Boshier resigned when he hit the statutory retirement age of 72, leaving the country in the awkward (and legally questionable) position of having him continue as a temporay appointee. It apparently took the entire political system by surprise - as evinced by Labour's dick move ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • PSA: NZ's Richest Company, Zuru, Sucks
    Hi,Today the New Zealand press is breathlessly reporting that the owners of toy company Zuru are officially New Zealand’s wealthiest people: Mat and Nick Mowbray worth an estimated $20 billion between them.While the New Zealand press loses its shit celebrating this Kiwi success story, this is a Webworm reminder that ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    5 days ago
  • Bernard's Dawn Chorus and pick 'n' mix for Monday, June 10
    TL;DR: The six things to note in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy around housing, climate and poverty in the past day to 8:36 pm on Monday, June 10 were:20,000 protested against the Fast-track approval bill on Saturday in Auckland, but PM Christopher Luxon says ‘sorry, but not sorry’ about the need for ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • In Defence of Kāinga Ora
    Given the headlines around the recent findings of the ‘independent’ review of Kāinga Ora by Bill English, you might assume this post will be about social housing, Kāinga Ora’s most prominent role. While that is indeed something that requires defending, I want to talk about the other core purpose of ...
    Greater AucklandBy Connor Sharp
    6 days ago
  • Baby You're A Rich Man
    “How does it feel to beOne of the beautiful peopleNow that you know who you areWhat do you want to beAnd have you traveled very far?Far as the eye can see”Yesterday the ACT party faithful were regaled with craven boasts, sneers, and demands for even more at their annual rally.That ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    6 days ago
  • Stopping a future Labour government from shutting down gas exploration
    A defiant Resources Minister Shane Jones has responded to Saturday’s environmental protests by ending Labour’s offshore oil exploration ban and calling for long-term contracts with any successful explorers. The purpose would be to prevent a future Labour Government from reversing any licence the explorers might hold. Jones sees a precedent ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    6 days ago
  • 2024 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #23
    A listing of 32 news and opinion articles we found interesting and shared on social media during the past week: Sun, June 2, 2024 thru Sat, June 8, 2024. Story of the week Our Story of the Week is Yale Climate Connection's Resources for debunking common solar and wind myths, by ...
    6 days ago
  • Fission by the river
    This is where we ate our lunch last Wednesday. Never mind your châteaux and castles and whatnot, we like to enjoy a baguette in the shadow of a nuclear power plant; a station that puts out more than twice as much as Manapouri using nothing more than tiny atoms to bring ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    7 days ago
  • Fact Brief – Is the ocean acidifying?
    Skeptical Science is partnering with Gigafact to produce fact briefs — bite-sized fact checks of trending claims. This fact brief was written by John Mason in collaboration with members from the Gigafact team. You can submit claims you think need checking via the tipline. Is the ocean acidifying? Acidification of oceans ...
    1 week ago
  • 20,000+ on Queen St.
    The largest protest I ever went on was in the mid 90s. There were 10,000 people there that day, and I’ve never forgotten it. An enormous mass of people, chanting together. Stretching block after block, bringing traffic to a halt.But I can’t say that’s the biggest protest I’ve ever been ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Josh Drummond's Columns
    Hi there,I wanted to put all of Josh Drummond’s Webworm pieces all in one place. I love that he writes for Webworm — and all of these are a good read!David.Why Are So Many “Christians” Hellbent on Being Horrible?Why do so many objectively hideous people declare themselves “Christian”?Meeting the Master ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    1 week ago
  • Bernard’s Saturday soliloquy and weekend Pick ‘n’ Mix for June 8/9
    Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: On reflection, the six things to note in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy around housing, climate and poverty this week were:The Government-driven freeze in building new classrooms, local roads and water networks in order to save cash for tax cuts is frustrating communities facing massive population ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • The no-vision thing
    Hello! Here comes the Saturday edition of More Than A Feilding, catching you up on the past somewhat interrupted week. Still on the move!Share Read more ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • When Journalists are Disingenuous
    Hi,One of the things I like the most about Webworm is to be able to break down the media and journalism a little, and go behind the scenes.This is one of those times.Yesterday an email arrived in my inbox from journalist Jonathan Milne, who is managing editor at Newsroom.I don’t ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    1 week ago
  • Me, elsewhere: Just say you’ll do the thing
    Wrote something over at 1/200 on a familiar theme of mine: The way we frame the economy as a separate, sacred force which must be sacrificed to, the way we talk about criminals as invaders who must be repelled, the constant othering of people on the benefit, people not in ...
    Boots TheoryBy Stephanie Rodgers
    1 week ago
  • A Voyage Among the Vandals: Accepted
    A nice bit of news today: my 4600-word historical fantasy-horror piece, A Voyage Among the Vandals, has been accepted by Phobica Books (https://www.phobicabooks.co.uk/books) for their upcoming Pirate Horror anthology, Shivering Timbers. This one is set in the Mediterranean, during the mid-fifth century AD. Notable for having one of history’s designated ...
    1 week ago
  • Ministerial conflicts of interest
    Since the National government came to power, it has been surrounded by allegations of conflicts of interest. Firstly, there's the fast-track law, which concentrates power in the hands of three Ministers, some of whom have received donations from companies whose projects they will be deciding on. Secondly, there's the close ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The 2024 Budget Forecasts Are Gloomy Prognosis About The Next Three Years.
    There was no less razzamatazz about the 2024 Budget than about earlier ones. Once again the underlying economic analysis got lost. It deserves more attention.Just to remind you, the Budget Economic and Fiscal Update (BEFU), is the Treasury’s independent assessment and so can be analysed by other competent economists (although ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 week ago
  • A government that can't see twenty feet ahead
    There are two failings that consistently characterise a National government. One is a lack of imagination, the other is their willingness to look after their mates, no matter what harm it might do to everyone else.This is how we come to have thousands of enormous trucks carving up our roads. ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • A post I hope is incorrect
    In May, we learned that National MP David MacLeod had "forgotten" to declare $178,000 in electoral donations. Filing a donation return which is false in any material particular is a crime, and the Electoral Commission has now referred MacLeod to police, since they're the only people who are allowed to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Māori Cannot Re-Write New Zealand’s Constitution By Stealth.
    The Kotahitanga Parliament 1897: A Māori Parliament – at least in the guise of a large and representative body dedicated to describing the shape of New Zealand’s future from a Māori perspective – would be a very good idea.THE DEMAND for a “Māori Parliament” needs to be carefully unpicked. Some Pakeha, ...
    1 week ago
  • Cowpats and Colonials.
    Dumbtown, is how my friend Gerard refers to people like ZB listeners - he’s not wrong.Normally on a Friday I start by looking at Mike Hosking’s moronic reckons of the week which he vomits down the throats of his audience like helpless baby birds in a nest, grateful for the ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Gordon Campbell on cutting the sick leave of vulnerable workers
    Should sick leave be part and parcel of the working conditions from Day One on the job, just like every other health and safety provision? Or should access to sick leave be something that only gradually accumulates, depending on how long a worker has been on the payroll? If enacted ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    1 week ago
  • Nobody Move: Ageing Boomers, Laurie & Les, Talk Politics.
    So long as we live in a democracy, economic policy can never be anything other than social-democratic.“HEH!”, snorted Laurie, as he waved his debit card over the EFTPOS machine. “Same price as last week. I guess budgets aren’t what they used to be.”“I wouldn’t know,” replied the young barman, wearily, ...
    1 week ago
  • In Search Of Unity.
    Kotahitanga: New Zealand’s future belongs to those who do not fear a nation carved out of unity and solidarity, and are willing to trust the carvers. Some New Zealanders will be required to step up, and others, perhaps for the first time in their lives, will be expected to step ...
    1 week ago
  • Weekly Roundup 7-June-2024
    Welcome to another Friday roundup! Here are some recent links and stories that caught our eye, perfectly timed for your watercooler discussions and weekend reading. As always feel free to share more in the comments. Our header image this week is by Patrick Reynolds, and shows Te Komititanga from above. ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    1 week ago
  • The Hoon around the week to June 7
    As Workplace Relations and Safety Minister, ACT’s Brooke van Velden is fronting proposed changes to sick pay regulations and The Holiday Act. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The podcast above of the weekly ‘hoon’ webinar for paying subscribers features talking with:The Kākā’s climate correspondent talking about the ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • Did we boil the oceans by cutting pollution?
    Lowering aerosol emissions from shipping has altered clouds, with potentially drastic effects. Photo: Getty ImagesTL;DR: Here’s the top six news items of note in climate news for Aotearoa-NZ this week, and a discussion above between Bernard Hickey and The Kākā’s climate correspondent Cathrine Dyer:New evidence is increasingly pointing at efforts ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #23 2024
    Open access notables Abrupt reduction in shipping emission as an inadvertent geoengineering termination shock produces substantial radiative warming, Yuan et al., Communications Earth & Environment: Human activities affect the Earth’s climate through modifying the composition of the atmosphere, which then creates radiative forcing that drives climate change. The warming effect ...
    1 week ago
  • Fragments
    The best observation I’ve read this week about the deep, profound harm Trump is doingTrump has hurled threats and smears at witnesses, jurors and the judge (including his family)... [he] has tried to intimidate witnesses and delegitimize the New York courts as corrupt. In continuing to incite his mob (that ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • March for Nature
    Do do do do do do do doDo do do do do doDi di di di di di di di di di diNature enter me…In 2018 the Labour lead government banned new oil and gas exploration in Aotearoa. A change welcomed by those who care deeply for our environment and ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Bernard’s Dawn Chorus and pick ‘n’ mix for Thursday, June 6
    The Transport Minister is trying to push through urgent legislation that would allow him to change emissions standards for car imports without approval from Parliament, after only consulting car importers. Photo: Lynn GrievesonTL;DR: Just as two major reports showed fossil fuel burning was warming the planet to dangerous levels and ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • A Better Broadway: Act 2
    This is a guest post by reader Grant A, the second of a pair about how to fix Broadway. If you missed the beginning of the show, here’s the link to Act 1 from yesterday. Yesterday, I discussed changing traffic circulation around Broadway in Newmarket. This included implementing a car-free ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    1 week ago
  • National breaks another health promise
    National has broken another manifesto health promise, apparently to save only $550,000. It will now train an additional 25 med students next year rather than the 50 it promised. This comes on top of the delays caused by National’s coalition partners in pushing ahead with the Waikato Medical School and ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    1 week ago
  • Climate Adam: Coping as the world’s best known climate scientist
    This video includes conclusions of the creator climate scientist Dr. Adam Levy. It is presented to our readers as an informed perspective. Please see video description for references (if any). Katharine Hayhoe is quite possibly the world's most famous climate scientist. She's produced wide ranging research, and communicated climate change with ...
    1 week ago

  • High Court Judge appointed
    Attorney-General Judith Collins today announced the appointment of Auckland King’s Counsel Gregory Peter Blanchard as a High Court Judge. Justice Blanchard attended the University of Auckland from 1991 to 1995, graduating with an LLB (Honours) and Bachelor of Arts (English). He was a solicitor with the firm that is now Dentons ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Health workforce numbers rise
    Health Minister Dr Shane Reti says new data released today shows encouraging growth in the health workforce, with a continued increase in the numbers of doctors, nurses and midwives joining Health New Zealand. “Frontline healthcare workers are the beating heart of the healthcare system. Increasing and retaining our health workforce ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government to overhaul firearms laws
    Associate Justice Minister Nicole McKee has today announced a comprehensive programme to reform New Zealand's outdated and complicated firearms laws. “The Arms Act has been in place for over 40 years. It has been amended several times – in a piecemeal, and sometimes rushed way. This has resulted in outdated ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government delivers landmark specialist schools investment
    The coalition Government is delivering record levels of targeted investment in specialist schools so children with additional needs can thrive. As part of Budget 24, $89 million has been ringfenced to redevelop specialist facilities and increase satellite classrooms for students with high needs. This includes: $63 million in depreciation funding ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Major health and safety consultation begins
    A substantial consultation on work health and safety will begin today with a roadshow across the regions over the coming months, says Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Brooke van Velden.  This the first step to deliver on the commitment to reforming health and safety law and regulations, set out in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Growing the potential of New Zealand’s forestry sector in partnership
    Forestry Minister Todd McClay, today announced the start of the Government’s plan to restore certainty and confidence in the forestry and wood processing sector. “This government will drive investment to unlock the industry’s economic potential for growth,” Mr McClay says. “Forestry’s success is critical to rebuilding New Zealand’s economy, boosting ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government cancels forestry ETS annual service charges for 2023-24
    Annual service charges in the forestry Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) will be cancelled for 2023/24, Forestry Minister Todd McClay says. “The sector has told me the costs imposed on forestry owners by the previous government were excessive and unreasonable and I agree,” Mr McClay says. “They have said that there ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Speech to the LGNZ Infrastructure Symposium
    Introduction Thank you for having me here today and welcome to Wellington, the home of the Hurricanes, the next Super Rugby champions. Infrastructure – the challenge This government has inherited a series of big challenges in infrastructure. I don’t need to tell an audience as smart as this one that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government boosts Agriculture and food trade with China
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