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Sunday Morons: an omnibus of silly people

Written By: - Date published: 1:02 pm, October 10th, 2010 - 19 comments
Categories: auckland supercity, C&R, john key, local body elections, local government, politicans, rodney hide, scoundrels, Spying, the praiseworthy and the pitiful - Tags: , , , , , , , ,

A few brickbats for people who have been shown to have really screwed up this week.

Obviously the biggest screwup this week is Paul Henry whose ratings driven bigotry came to a abrupt halt after he went far too far. This site has had an awful lot of page views from India on some posts. Hopefully they’d have found that this type of idiocy isn’t tolerated by all kiwis – just a noisy but insignificant minority. Of course John Key’s performance in not condemning this bigotry on-air at the time doesn’t exactly sit well with either our recent generations of immigrants or with our image overseas. That is what eventually happens when you sit on the fence about your mates without being clear about what is tolerable.

Michael Lhaws, in his usual copycat style, tried to follow the Breakfast bigot on monday at Radio Live in commenting on our governor general, and has been remarkably quiet ever since. He also is now in the position of barely scraping into the Whanganui council where he will be even more ineffectual than he has been in the past.

Rodney Hide was effectual only in driving the hard right out of politics in the Auckland super-shitty. Citizens and Ratepayers, the shadow political party that includes both the National and Act supporters in it, did extremely badly in the council elections. They dropped down to 5 members in the 22 member council, and of those who got elected all but one were centrists. The sole hard-right survivor will be quite lonely in the new Auckland.

A similar pattern of voting out the idiotic hard right was followed across the local boards*.  The Auckland Council now needs to make those boards effective by delegating the powers and the budget to be able to do anything.

I’m pretty sure that this wasn’t the gerrymander result that Rodney Hide wanted to see when he setup the super-shitty. The inevitable result explains why he has been progressively removing control away from those democratically elected by Aucklanders and into his unelected hand picked minions in the boards of the blatantly mis-named “Council Controlled Organisations”. These organisations have virtually no effective control by the council and are instead effectively run by the Ministry of Local Government – whose current minister is Rodney Hide.

The big battle in Auckland over the coming three years will be for the council to assert their control back over Aucklands assets. News this week had the architect of the transitional authority Mark Ford being placed as CEO of Watercare services. Since Hide had previously appointed him chairman of Auckland Transport, it means that the main battle will between our recently deposed dictator and his flunkies and the newly elected council.

The unedifying charges of electoral forgery in the Papatoetoe ward were disturbing for several reasons. Like No Right Turn, I find that the technical name suppression in a case that has a clear overriding public interest is quite disturbing. What I find even more irritating is that the Labour party allowed the use of their brand and obviously didn’t maintain sufficient control over the candidates using that brand. The subsequent actions of the local government commission in detecting the problem, the police in investigating it, and the Labour party for assisting that investigation and stating their position appear to have been exemplary.

John Key looked a bit ummm.. upset with the results in Auckland. It doesn’t bode well for the right in next years general election. Intransigence by the government in Wellington about returning control of Auckland council assets back to Auckland Council is probably going to be a major issue over the coming year. While the consequences of decisions about imposing the super-shitty on Auckland have largely fallen on the hard-right, doing his usual ineffectual smile-n-wave on control of assets isn’t going to be tolerable for Aucklanders of most political tendencies.

Richard Treadgold of the Climate Science Coalition – the idiots who are taking NIWA to court, was claiming victory in a long, rambling, and incoherent post before the case has ever gone to court. Apparently he thinks that the NIWA document that restated their statutory obligations means that there is a change in position in NIWA. To me it simply looks like more of the same delusional thinking that characterizes the CSC.

Similarly, a report in the Baptist website had Ian Wishart claiming that the issues facing Takuu (the subject of my producer partners award winning documentary – “There once was an island“) were fabrications is simply delusional. Wishart has such an understanding of the science of climate that he cites decade old documents from NASA designed for mid-school children as being worthy of his scientific approval – and still misunderstood it.

In baptist article about Takuu he cites various activities like dynamite fishing and coral harvesting that have never happened on Takuu. His point about tectonic plate movement that has now been disproved and was never feasible as a cause in the human timeframe anyway. Fabrication of theories based on inadequate evidence appears to be Ian Wisharts favorite investigative technique, which probably explains why he sees it in everyone else.

Advertorial: The documentary looks at the response of the Takuu islanders to changes in their local conditions rather than the debate on climate change. But make up your own mind. “There Once was an Island” is screening at Wellington’s Paramount Theatre 8pm this Sunday October 10 as part of the 350 Global Climate Change Working Bee. Tickets are $20.

Also delusional this week is the governments decision to run a civil case against the Waihopia 3. The crown lost the criminal case against them primarily because the GCSB would not testify on what they do at the spybase thereby refuting the defendants claims of what they thought was going on there. The crown are now running a civil damage case. This looks purely vindictive, costly, unlikely to produce a good result for the crown, and in any event ineffectual at recovering the claim.

I can foresee some considerable amusement castigating this penny-pinching government for wasting the resources required to pursue this vendetta. They’d be better off using them to beef up security at the base and getting its role more clearly defined in the public eye so that a similar defense cannot be successfully used again. Of course if the latter is impossible because it is truthful, then a vendetta may be the governments only option.

However the most stupid event this week was National starting a new round of leaky home problems before the last one is cleaned up. The consultation document makes it quite clear that the primary motivation for shifting all interior wood to H1.2 rather than the current mix of H1.2 and H3.1, the latter currently used in the higher wet risk areas, is motivated by perceived efficiencies in the supply chain rather than the primary issue of having safer homes.

As a person who has had to help fix a leaky apartment, sued everyone in creation, nearly gone into bankruptcy over it, and been lucky enough to get a settlement – I’m pissed off with this moronic focus on build costs. There is still an outstanding bill of $11-23 billion on the last round of misplaced ‘efficiencies’ from a previous National governments decisions in 1991, with people living in rotting housing and public building requiring massive repairs. Many councils are heading for bankruptcies as home owners manage to fight their way through to court. The promised support to get the houses back up to scratch is stalled because the government is unwilling to push it – so this is the time that they want to start the problems again? Idiotic. But that defined this government – they over-promise, under deliver, and focus on side-show trivialities like non-existent cycleways.

* I have to congratulate various bloggers for getting into the local boards with significiant votes. It looks like Julie Fairey, Greg Presland, and Peter Haynes are all in. However I think that Rocky missed out. In minor news, Cameron Slater managed to get deluded 1100 people to vote for him. I’m sure I’ve missed a few – speak up.

19 comments on “Sunday Morons: an omnibus of silly people ”

  1. Draco T Bastard 1

    Your link to NACT creating more badly built homes goes to NRT: Labour on Singh. And, after their legislative failure that created the leaky homes in the first place, I’m not surprised to find NACT doing it again. Everything to benefit them and their rich mates (It will boost profits) but absolutely no help to anyone else.

    • lprent 1.1

      Fixed (usual editing error).

      The consultation document is pretty explicit that the main reason for the change is to simplify the supply chain and the site management of materials. The support in the document about the potential effects on the robustness of dwellings is cursory at best. It appears to rely almost entirely on a single study which I couldn’t link to.

      The timeframe and end-date for the ‘consultation’ follows the well established NACT pattern when they want to slide something dubious under the radar. It is very short and the decision time is designed to happen during the mid-summer torpor.

    • lprent 2.1

      Interesting. But I’d agree with the statements made by the Councillor on the use of psuedonyms, and disagree with the WCC Watch site. If you read our policy on privacy you’ll see that we explicitly disapprove of that use of private information.

      Quite simply you have to be in a position running a blog site where people are able to trust that the private parts of the information that they leave remain private. If you want to deal with someone being a silly bugger, then you should deal with it in moderation, without disclosing the reasons to all and sundry. To do anything else is to reduce the flow of candid comment.

      The alternative is the ‘outing’ circus that went on in 2007/8 largely by such luminaries as Cameron Slater, but also by some on the left. The numbers of comments on sites (and that are still running) that did that is still minimal. The really daft thing is that most of the ‘outers’ were proponents of free speech who managed to stifle it with being silly buggers.

      • smhead 2.1.1

        That is interesting Lynn. I take the view that people seeking public office have no right to pseudenyms. People voting should have a right to see what a candidate has or hasn’t publicly said and how consistent those messages are.

        • lprent 2.1.1.1

          As I said, we take privacy seriously on this site, and why we take action. Which is why I just deleted part of one of your previous comments.

          If people care to expose their identity, then I don’t care – it is their decision. But using a pseudonym as far as I’m concerned is an explicit act to protect their privacy. Quite simply a good pseudonym is another personality which is often a facet of the persons overall personality. It deserves protection in the interests of fostering debate. My various lprent roles (sysop, moderator, poster, and commentator) are quite different, and when I was using AncientGeek, it was different again.

          That being said, I do tend to monitor who is saying what. I’d expect that most candidates will do their commenting under disclosed identities – it tends to be silly to do otherwise. However that usually takes the form of us e-mailing them and warning them (which has happened a few times) or directly moderating them if they fall into the defamatory, self-promotional or troll behaviours.

          Frequently you find that people have a online personality long before they seek office. What do you do then? Blame them for something they wrote with an expectation of privacy 20 years ago?

          • smhead 2.1.1.1.1

            I don’t know why you deleted that comment Lynn. The person named is widely published as the blogger concerned, you even included him in the list of “bloggers” who got elected.

            • lprent 2.1.1.1.1.1

              It might be ‘widely known’. However I haven’t seen the person make that explicit disclosure in the media or on this site.

              Have you forgotten the ‘wide disclosure’ that that fool Whaleoil did saying that r0b was Rob Salmond? It was completely wrong, but still gets repeated by idiots even here. How can you know who it is if you don’t have access to the backend of the blog without a disclosure by a system operator? Quite simply you were making an unsubstantiated presumption and treating it as fact.

              Note that I didn’t link the pseudonyms of candidates except for Rocky (and Julie when I let comments go through congratulating her) who are explicit about who they are. Hell I never linked Whaleoil with Cameron Slater until after he went public about it himself.

              • smhead

                No I didn’t forget the wide disclorsure about rob lynne because I wasn’t commenting then and didn’t read either this blog or the other one then.

                No you didn’t link the pseudonym lynne but you did say that all three were bloggers. We know who Julie and Rocky are, so maybe you can give some evidence to your claim that the third person you named is a blogger by giving evidence of his blog output.

                • lprent

                  Why would I do that? It’d be like revealing who you really are…

                  Should I do that as well? I could probably backtrack it if I cared to do so and have a fairly good chance of pinning some identity info down.

                  The rules that protect him are the same rules that protect you from my intrusive prying into your identity.

  2. smhead 3

    Yeah you are welcome to track me down if you like Lynne.

    For the record, above you have listed Greg Presland as a blogger. I have googled a blog under his name, and I haven’t found one. There are however various google references to him which is probably not surprising since he is a high profile labour activist.

    • lprent 3.1

      I’m a high profile Labour activist as well and have been so since the early 90’s (if you’d been around in Labour operational circles)

      But if you look prior to starting this blog, you won’t find any crossover between my pseudonyms and my real identity either. You will find material that I wrote as myself on usenet, but that is about all. That was probably less than 5% of my writing across the net in various forums.

      The rule here is that we don’t allow peoples pseudonyms to ‘outed’ unless they do so themselves. Comment in the site and you follow our rules.

  3. freedom 4

    i am not a lawyer but in one way i would love to see the government stride ahead with the Waihopai case because in order to win they would have to produce an invoice for the said repairs. Also because it would be a PR disaster in a social and a judicial sense. The defendants do not have the resources to pay any eventual settlement anyway.

    Primarily though, the issue would pivot on the oft repeated statement that it cost $1million to repair the damage to the base. It is my understanding that they cannot produce anythng resembling a legitimate invoice as the U.S.A. (via the Echelon programme) paid for the repairs in order to avoid disclosure over responsibilities for the operation, management and maintenance of the base.

    Any invoice they do present will only be a rabbithole map to other issues that the past Goverments of this country have worked diligently on keeping out of the public arena

  4. Julie 5

    Thanks for the congrats :). Bit of a shock and a whirlwind so still catching up on everything. Should be a fun new adventure!!

  5. Doug 6

    Dear Lprent

    Not that I really care about what he thinks as my opinion of him could not be lower if I dug a trench, his name is actually Richard Treadgold.

    Cheers Doug

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