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Posts Tagged ‘articles’

Conservatism and Progressivism

Written By: - Date published: 3:30 pm, January 27th, 2009 - 99 comments

Conservatism is all about maintaining the status quo. It assumes that the status quo is essentially ok, while change is best avoided. The idea comes from philosophers like Edmund Burke who figured the reason conventions and structures get to endure in the first place is because they work. Of course if you’re in the middle […]

Does money buy happiness after all?

Written By: - Date published: 4:15 pm, April 23rd, 2008 - 29 comments

In 1974, economist Richard Easterlin, published a study in which he argued that economic growth didn’t necessarily lead to more satisfaction. In poor countries, gaining the necesseties of life raised happiness but beyond those gains there was no increase. This became known as the Easterlin paradox. Just last week, two young economists presented what they […]

Behind TV Analysts, Pentagon’s Hidden Hand

Written By: - Date published: 9:33 am, April 23rd, 2008 - 2 comments

The NY Times reports on the symbiotic relationship between media “military analysts” and the Bush administration. Records and interviews show how the Bush administration has used its control over access and information in an effort to transform the analysts into a kind of media Trojan horse — an instrument intended to shape terrorism coverage from […]

Beware the Tory wolf in liberal clothing

Written By: - Date published: 4:28 pm, April 9th, 2008 - 23 comments

Polly Toynbee of The Guardian writes: “Beware the lesson of the Tory wolf in liberal clothing: Sweden’s great social democracy has been transformed for the worse – and Britain risks importing the nightmare”. At the previous election [the moderates] had crashed at just 15%, so Reinfeldt, an appealing and eloquent 41-year-old, had a free hand […]

Finlay MacDonald: The Audacity of Hype

Written By: - Date published: 10:23 am, April 8th, 2008 - 14 comments

A reader wrote to us to say that they’d recently seen Finlay MacDonald speak at Otago University as part of the Distinguished Communicator Lecture Series for the Centre of Science Communication. The talk is now online: The Audacity of Hype: John Key and the new National Socialism. In case you hadn’t picked up on this […]

Guest post: Simon Tegg on Peak Oil

Written By: - Date published: 1:57 pm, March 18th, 2008 - 16 comments

Meet Guest post. Guest post is 32 years old, he likes long walks on the beach and lively political debate. He is our new vehicle for experts on interesting and relevant topics to contribute posts to The Standard. Our first guest is Simon Tegg, who has done research on peak oil. It says something about […]

SST recycles discredited National party spin

Written By: - Date published: 12:28 pm, March 17th, 2008 - 7 comments

Rob Stock apparently holds several awards for personal finance reporting but looks unlikely to win another based on his rehash of National Party lines in the SST this weekend. I can understand the desire to get these pesky articles to the publisher when the sun’s shining and there are better things to be doing outside […]

Fairtrade: More than just branding

Written By: - Date published: 9:37 pm, March 15th, 2008 - 16 comments

Do you buy Fairtrade products? Or do you think of it as just another marketing ploy? This recent article “Teach us how to fish – do not just give us the fish” from the Guardian puts a personal perspective on consumer purchasing power. Three producers talk about how their lives and those of their communities […]

Espiner on National’s hypocrisy

Written By: - Date published: 6:14 pm, February 25th, 2008 - 37 comments

From Colin’s blog: It’s time for National to put its mouth where its money is. After a week of climbing into Labour boots and all over the Owen Glenn saga, one thing has become abundantly clear: the Nats have lost any defence of their right to keep their own campaign donations secret. It is the […]

Getting emotional about economics

Written By: - Date published: 9:27 am, February 14th, 2008 - 65 comments

Michael Shermer of the LA Times asks: “Would you rather earn $50,000 a year while other people make $25,000, or would you rather earn $100,000 a year while other people get $250,000?” Somewhat surprisingly you might think, it turns out that most people chose the first option. They’d rather earn twice as much as others […]

Is inequality closing down our concern for others?

Written By: - Date published: 4:31 pm, February 13th, 2008 - 1 comment

Jenny Russel of the Guardian writes, “As the middle classes feel the pain of comparison with the super-rich, we lose all enthusiasm for the common good”. The rise of the super-rich, and their capacity to outbid others in the competition for houses, schools, space and possessions, has produced a new definition of success. It is […]

Salvation Army report finds poverty in Godzone

Written By: - Date published: 4:23 pm, February 11th, 2008 - 53 comments

A report out today from the Salvation Army acts as a reminder that despite a suite of policies designed to improve the lives of those most in need there’s still work to be done. Major Campbell Roberts says: “As a country we have invested hugely in core social spending, from $23b 10 years ago to […]

George Bush’s favourite painting

Written By: - Date published: 7:17 am, February 2nd, 2008 - 2 comments

What does President Bush’s favourite painting say about him? The Guardian trys to find out. Bush claims that the artwork, which hangs in his office, is a “beautiful painting of a horseman determinedly charging up what appears to be a steep and rough trail. This is us.” It turns out that the painting was first […]

The political brain – listen to this

Written By: - Date published: 9:08 am, January 28th, 2008 - 17 comments

A must hear for anyone interested in political marketing and influencing voters. This item played on Chris Laidlaw’s Sunday show on Radio NZ National yesterday. “When we decide who to vote for, are we making a rational choice? Or does emotion dictate our voting choice?” This is useful for people of all political stripes and […]

Is Barack Obama dull?

Written By: - Date published: 9:40 am, January 22nd, 2008 - 31 comments

Armando Iannucci from The Observer wonders whether he’s the only person to find Barack Obama dull: Like Will Smith, who in the new film I Am Legend wakes up to find himself the last man alive in a world of zombies, am I now the only person left on the planet who finds Barack Obama […]

The best of The Standard in 2007

Written By: - Date published: 10:22 am, December 28th, 2007 - 39 comments

As we contemplate a bad year in the polls for Labour, the signs are pointing to National cruising onto victory in 2008. Or are they? Labour’s mistake may have been that it assumed a booming economy would be enough to carry the day, given that its credentials for a social agenda will always leave National […]

A New Year’s wish

Written By: - Date published: 7:23 am, December 26th, 2007 - 35 comments

As a kid growing up in the countryside I recall being startled by the realisation that there were people in the world who had never seen a farm animal of any description. How one-dimensional and narrow their view of the world must be, I thought. Another aspect of life in rural New Zealand, which I […]

Rules of the game

Written By: - Date published: 9:59 pm, December 3rd, 2007 - 55 comments

Just had a read of Colin Espiner’s latest opinion piece. He certainly doesn’t pull any punches. Here’s what he has to say about the EFB: But despite attempts by Labour to patch up the worst of the bill’s flaws, it remains a shoddy piece of legislation that should be consigned to the dustbin. And, in […]

Electoral Finance Bill – some sense at last?

Written By: - Date published: 4:20 pm, November 12th, 2007 - 13 comments

I’m not always a fan of Colin Espiner’s work, but thank goodness someone’s injected a bit of sense into this morning’s hysteria over the EFB. This morning’s blog post kicks off by pointing out the credibility hit the Herald will take for its shameless National Party propagandising this morning: The Electoral Finance Bill comes back […]

Defining political conservatism

Written By: - Date published: 9:53 am, October 18th, 2007 - 20 comments

A month or so ago we posted on a study that appeared to show that the brains of conservative and liberals differed. A related study has been conducted recently by UC Berkeley. It was looking for consistent underlying motivations to politically conservative agendas. Four researchers who culled through 50 years of research literature about the […]

Trotter in the Independent

Written By: - Date published: 2:48 pm, October 17th, 2007 - Comments Off on Trotter in the Independent

Apologies to The Independent Financial Review and to Chris Trotter for this rather large cut and paste from the second half of his article but it’s good stuff. If you enjoy it perhaps you’ll consider either buying or subscribing to the The Independent. The Press political editor Colin Espiner, in his “On the House” blog, […]

Ig Nobel awards

Written By: - Date published: 12:20 pm, October 13th, 2007 - 1 comment

This years’ Ig Nobel awards have just been presented. The awards recognise achievements that “first make people laugh, then make them think”. Pictured is Ig Nobel Medicine Prize winner Dan Meyer punctuating his and Brian Witcombe’s joint one-minute-long acceptance speech for their prize in the medicine category. Their paper was entitled: “Sword Swallowing and Its […]

Che

Written By: - Date published: 11:06 am, October 9th, 2007 - 4 comments

Today is the 40th anniversary of Che Guevara’s death. The BBC has a piece up titled “Che: the icon and the ad” tracing the history of the famous Guevara image. “There is no other image like it. What other image has been sustained in this way?” asks Trisha Ziff, the curator of a touring exhibition […]

Are you biased?

Written By: - Date published: 9:43 am, October 8th, 2007 - 4 comments

And would you even know if you were? A team of researchers have set up an online test that can help to uncover your subconscious biases. It’s called the Implicit Association Test (IAT), and it’s designed to detect your hidden biases in categories like race, gender and age. The test’s part of a larger research […]

Ralston on National

Written By: - Date published: 7:24 am, October 7th, 2007 - 3 comments

A good read from Bill Ralston in the Herald today. He observes what seems to have been a turn in media and public opinion against Key and National, noting: But, frankly, National has only itself to blame. I wonder if Bill English is not out to deliberately lose the next election in the forlorn hope […]

Ethical coffee good for business

Written By: - Date published: 7:14 am, October 7th, 2007 - 2 comments

The Guardian reports that “Growing consumer demand for ethically sourced coffee has fuelled a huge year-on-year rise in sales”. Global sales of coffee, chocolate and bananas certified by the conservation organisation Rainforest Alliance – which supports the world’s poorest farmers in Latin America and Africa – exceeded £500m for the first time last year. Earlier […]

O’Sullivan defends Key’s comments

Written By: - Date published: 10:53 am, October 6th, 2007 - 7 comments

Fran O’Sullivan of the Herald, has lept to John Key’s defence. She points to a couple of times back in 2003 when Clark and Goff reffer to “post-conflict” and “post-war” Iraq. Apparently their comments of four and a half years ago are meant to undermine any criticism of Key’s “The war in Iraq is over” […]

Many a true word is spoken in jest

Written By: - Date published: 1:27 pm, October 5th, 2007 - Comments Off on Many a true word is spoken in jest

The NBR this week – hardly a publication known for its politically balanced coverage – includes digs at both National Party blogger David Farrar and also John Key’s disasterous series of policy gaffes (though both by way of humour). Of course NBR readers are spared any serious commentary on the National Party policy train wreck. […]

Comment here. Get famous.

Written By: - Date published: 10:54 am, October 5th, 2007 - Comments Off on Comment here. Get famous.

The NY Times reports: DASHIV is in town and the celebration has not ceased. Strange women are opening their apartments to him. Three parties have been given in his honor. His beer mug has been constantly refilled. All hail DaShiv. Who in the world is DaShiv? Well, in one sense he is Bob Hsiao, a […]

Pick your own price for Radiohead album

Written By: - Date published: 2:49 pm, October 1st, 2007 - Comments Off on Pick your own price for Radiohead album

If you read yesterday’s post about music and copyright this might be of interest. If not, umm, well sorry. Radiohead are about to release their new album: In Rainbows. They’re pre-releasing it via their website where you can choose to purchase it as a special boxed set with vinyl and other goodies or as a […]

Liberal and conservative brains differ

Written By: - Date published: 7:26 pm, September 30th, 2007 - 5 comments

A recent neurobiology study suggests that liberals tolerate ambiguity and conflict better than conservatives. The result seems to be strongly tied to low-level brain activity and suggests that political orientation could be related to differences in how the brain processes information. The study asked paricipants to tap a keyboard when an M appeared on a […]

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