The definition of irony

Written By: - Date published: 6:49 am, June 20th, 2008 - 44 comments
Categories: john key - Tags: , ,

When a band who sued after their work was famously plagiarised by a certain leader of the National Party is themselves sued for plagiarism. All it needs now is for National to sue the guy suing Coldplay and they’ll have completed the circle.

[Creaky Boards’ song vs Coldplay’s] [John Key DVD soundtrack vs ‘Clocks’]

44 comments on “The definition of irony”

  1. The Herald seems to have missed the irony, though. Funny that.

  2. vto 2

    Completely off topic but dunno where to post it…

    Two items in the media today and yesterday caught my attention as subjects I rant about on here sometimes.

    Firstly, Winston Peters comments re “lazy peacock-strutting” pacific island men. A common subject of mine relates to this – will he get away with it or will he be labelled racist? And how would the answer to that question alter if the same utterances had come from, say, Gerry Brownlee or, um, John Key?

    It will help to illustrate the issue of what races are allowed to comment on other races. In this racist world. Touchy subject eh, but gotta be brave and stand up for what you believe is right.

    Secondly, Cullen comes out saying ‘it appears the economy shrunk earlier this year’. This illustrates a matter I have thought for years – namely that those in Wgtn are always a few months behind the 8-ball as to what is going on in the rest of NZ. It was crystal clear to those in business in the first few months of this year that the economy had effectively simply stopped. (not a dig at wgtn, just an observation)

    Which is unfortunate, because so many people get harmed financially when times like this strike. And this downturn imo is one of the best examples of ‘perception becoming reality’ that I have ever seen. Or, put another common way, one of the best self-fulfilling prophecies ever.

    2c

  3. A thought on the completing the circle of plaguiarism… would this constitute a ‘menage de twits’?

    On vto’s attempt to debate other issues, have the standardistas thought about open debate threads?

    That said, I’m not sure that you have represented Peters’ remarks accurately, vto

    The captcha suffered Mayor reminds me that I would like to express my best wishes to Len Brown for his recovery.

  4. lprent 4

    vto: lagging – the problem is the lag in reporting of statistics and taxes. When the minister of finance or reserve bank or stats department report they are working off consolidated data from businesses. It is always months late.

    Businesses have sales people with feelers out into their customer base. They can look at their accounts receivable – the usual key indicator is slower payments. They have much faster notifications about what is happening in their business and their customers. But it is a limited viewpoint.

    I’m afraid I’d hate the government policy to work off rumor. Different business sectors have different cycles. For instance where I’m working it is pretty good at present, but our next door business is having problems.

    I’m happy for policy to be made on consolidated stats, even if they are late. Economies do not turn fast. Also I hate chicken little thinking – panic always causes lousy results.

  5. r0b 5

    Completely off topic but dunno where to post it

    Interesting comment from you vto – good stuff.

    Two items in the media today and yesterday caught my attention as subjects I rant about on here sometimes.

    Two items caught my attention too – both cyclists getting killed. Be careful out there people. But on to your comments vto.

    Firstly, Winston Peters comments re “lazy peacock-strutting’ pacific island men. A common subject of mine relates to this – will he get away with it or will he be labelled racist?

    Winston Peters is a racist who makes racist comments. This is one of them in a mild way I guess, though the factual content of the claim that women to almost all of the domestic work in the PI community is arguably true.

    Secondly, Cullen comes out saying ‘it appears the economy shrunk earlier this year’. This illustrates a matter I have thought for years – namely that those in Wgtn are always a few months behind the 8-ball as to what is going on in the rest of NZ. It was crystal clear to those in business in the first few months of this year that the economy had effectively simply stopped. (not a dig at wgtn, just an observation)

    Not so sure about this one though. Everyone in business has a finger on the pulse of their business and related, but not necessarily an overview of the big picture – how other parts of the economy are performing. Wellington does get that. But it’s not an exact science! Treasury forecasts are ludicrously wrong some times. This stuff is hard.

    ‘perception becoming reality’ that I have ever seen. Or, put another common way, one of the best self-fulfilling prophecies ever.

    Yes, interesting effect that. Which is why some people get concerned about the distribution of the ownership of mass media in this country. When you can create your own perception you can create your own reality. I think there’s a fair bit of this going about just now…

  6. Phil 6

    Adding to Lynn’s comments; GDP data is not, in and of itself, “collected” through Stats NZ. It’s actually another aggregation of other data collections from enterprise surveys, administrative databases, prices, employment data, merchandise trade data, investment data, so on and so forth.

    The National Accountant boffins have to wait for everything else to be finalised before they can bring it all together. It’s a long and time consuming process that is totally underrated by the eventual users of the finished product.

  7. vto 7

    Iprent and Phil, of course. By its very nature reporting of stats and trends must follow the events themselves. And it would be foolish of Cullen to comment before being certain of these measurements and stats -imagine if he passed comment based on what I or others ‘see’ in business, and then it turned out to be not quite right or not the full story. Wouldn’t be a good look for him. It’s just an observation of mine.

    But an observation that seems to hold true for politics as well. Clark seems to have missed the lay of the land a few times over the last year or so. That may be due to other things too tho.

    But the one that truly interests me is the Peters “lazy peacock-strutting” pacific island men. rOb, you see it as a mildly racist comment. How is that?

    It seems today that generalisations are banned. Nobody is allowed to generalise about any group of people. I struggle with that, as generalisations (which are by their nature not the entire picture) have been a coping mechanism of life on planet earth since day dot – example, an antelope will generalise about a lion. A group of women and children will generalise about an approaching group of young men.

    Generalising can be dangerous and lead to racism etc. Or rather, be a convenient excuse to act in a racist or other abusive manner. It is a fine line, but I don’t see the problem in what Peters said, if he believes it to be true. What gets to me is the automatic accusation that he is racist merely because of the race of the subject matter. Like the academic who recently got pilloried for similar statements about pacific islanders.

    Just feeling things out and testing my brain waves…

  8. T-rex 8

    What gets to me is the automatic accusation that he is racist merely because of the race of the subject matter.

    The problem is that it IS racist vto. Being factually correct doesn’t change it.

    “Racist” tends to get thrown around as a generic label equivalent to “bad person”, people forget what it means, and why it’s bad.

    Peters is probably right, but not useful. It is racist, and is bad, despite being technically correct. All it does is tar any pacific island men who AREN’T strutting around like peacocks with the brush of prejudice. It is divisive.

    All targeted policy comes out of generalisations about a particular demographic. The issue is how you present it.

    You’ll notice the Maori party doesn’t generally get up in arms when someone says “Whanau is important to Maori, and provides mutual care and support within the wider family”. That is a completely racist statement. However it’s not particularly racially discriminatory, which is the issue people should actually be worrying about when it appears.

    I’m waffling a bit here because I haven’t bothered to structure this.

    I think the general rule should be:

    “If you identify an underperforming (in whatever way) sector of society, then deliver targeted support in a way that doesn’t devalue their perceived contribution. Otherwise you’re just kicking people who are already (on average) down”.

    I dunno actually.

    How do you modify behaviour without making people feel harassed? You don’t. Cost of life.
    You don’t have to be a name-calling asshole about it though, which is what Peters is doing. I’ve got no problem with the approach when dealing with specific cases, but it pisses me right off when used on generalisations.

  9. Man… only you could pass this off as news. Slow day huh?

    And seriously screw cyclists. They act like they want to be killed. Riding over bridges right on the road, always on the road. I will hit one some day. Not on purpose either. They seem to be idiots. Big generalisation here, but I drive 700km a week so I get my fair share close calls.

    Speaking of which, I’ve crashed 3 times. All caused by other people

  10. Lew 10

    infused: Frivolous Friday.

    L

  11. higherstandard 12

    r0b

    I don’t think Winston is really a racist – he merely says things that are or may be viewed as racist for political gain, with his asian bashing not gaining any great support he’s now off on another tangent to see if it attracts any attention. Let’s face facts the man has no shame and will try to hold onto power by whatever means necessary.

    Re Cyclists – agree completely – I seem to recall when I was riding in Europe that many of the countries there have very strict laws regarding the respect motor vehicles have to show to cyclists – perhaps we need something similar in NZ ?

    Infused …… Damn your eyes Sir !!

  12. r0b 13

    vto: But the one that truly interests me is the Peters “lazy peacock-strutting’ pacific island men. rOb, you see it as a mildly racist comment. How is that? It seems today that generalisations are banned. Nobody is allowed to generalise about any group of people.

    I don’t have time for a properly considered reply vto. Short form; yes we all do and must generalise. Generalisations are not in and of themselves racist (I stated one above). Extreme racism is overt attacks (and it often gets the facts wrong). Mild racism is harder to recognise, it states generalisations of varying truthiness, but like humour it is all in the delivery, and like pornography most of us know it when we see it.

    but I don’t see the problem in what Peters said, if he believes it to be true. What gets to me is the automatic accusation that he is racist merely because of the race of the subject matter.

    Context, history, delivery. Sorry I’m in a rush.

    Just feeling things out and testing my brain waves

    Good on ya.

  13. r0b 14

    And seriously screw cyclists. They act like they want to be killed.

    Up yours.

    (I’m a much more militant cyclist than socialist!)

  14. Of course Peters is being racist. The comments disparage Polynesian culture. They are designed to provoke rather than contribute to measured and informed discussion, as is blindingly obvious from the language used and the forum in which the comments were made.

    Nor does being Maori himself let him off the hook on that score.

  15. T-rex 16

    Hot question – Is it racist (or unreasonable) to say “Traditional polynesian culture, if applied in the NZ social and economic environment, involves an unfair division of responsibility and effort between Men and Women. This unfair division is inappropriate in NZ culture, and should not be endorsed or even tolerated.”.

    I’d argue no. It is not racist as it discriminates against a social philosophy (and hence only those who hold said philosophy are labelled), NOT a race in general.

  16. vto 17

    T-rex, that is what I am getting at. I dont think his comment is racist, just as the exact example statement you use was not at the time considered racist when it was applied to euro/nz culture in breaking down similarly ‘unfair divisions’ here in the past.

    As you say, it is a statement about a culture, or a particular social philosophy. Which just happens to be in a different race. There would be no problem with Peters’ statement if it concerned one segment of euro/nz culture today (eg lazy preening males within euro/nz).

    Where it gets confused imo is that such statements can be used as an excuse to download some racist beliefs. As I said before it is a fine and diffult line to draw.

    And this confusion point allows people to also accuse people of racism when in fact they are not.

    It all stifles debate and the ability for any culture to adapt, grow and change if people are too scared to point out flaws in another culture for fear of being incorrectly labelled a racist.

  17. vto 18

    Hey, nobody has offered an answer to my question – how different would the reaction to Peters’ statement have been if it had been made by Brownlee or Key instead?

  18. Phil 19

    “(I’m a much more militant cyclist than socialist!)”

    Note to self – if you’re going to try and kill r0b, make sure you do it properly first time…

    Keep looking over your shoulder dude. Once we automoblists rid the world of mopeds (which in sanskrit translates as “too shit to go on the motorway”) cycles are next

    =P

  19. J Mex 20

    The Creaky Boards song is better!

  20. mondograss 21

    To talk to vto’s other point about Cullens comment. Wasn’t he derided by Key for earlier this year saying a technical recession was possible? And yet what are we seeing….?

  21. Tane 22

    vto, I expect Peters is ignored because it’s expected from him – we all know he uses race to drum up support from racists, and we’ve all condemned him for it. There’s nothing new to add.

    If Key or Brownlee said it they’d be completely off-message and harming the brand they’re trying to sell the public, not to mention in more of a position to cause harm. That would be worth commenting on.

  22. vto 23

    true tane true

  23. Matthew Pilott 24

    Phil, once we militant cyclists / oil speculators make petrol too expensive we will rule the streets!

    vto, intersting thoughts. I interpret the Cullen one differently, and part of it is based upon what you said.

    You mentioned a self-fulfilling prophesy. I imagine Cullen, for economic reasons, and no doubt a dash of political expediency, didn’t wish to say that there would be a recession several months.

    I think you’ve mistaken that for not knowing there was going to be a recession. The way to clear this up would be to look at the man’s actions – has he acted as a Finance Minister of a buoyant economy, or one that is trending downwards. I’d say it’s the latter.

    So I disagree that moments like this hurt people, as you suggested, words and actions being very different things.

  24. vto 25

    true mr pilott re Cullens commenting.

    Re hurting people I was referring to the downturn, not any actions or words of Cullens.

  25. r0b 26

    Note to self – if you’re going to try and kill r0b, make sure you do it properly first time

    Well I’m flattered!

    Keep looking over your shoulder dude. Once we automoblists rid the world of mopeds (which in sanskrit translates as “too shit to go on the motorway’) cycles are next

    Here’s a prediction for you Phil. In about 30 years time the only fossil fuel powered vehicles in NZ will be in museums. But cycles will be everywhere.

  26. T-rex 27

    re: future of cycling – I want one of these with a crash cage and a beefed up engine. http://www.aerorider.com

  27. vto 28

    rOb, here’s a prediction for 30 years. Fossil fuel cars will certainly be in the museum. But cars powered by something else will be exponentially greater in number than today. And smaller and lighter and ridiculously efficient. (I like silver linings). And cyclists will still be shaking their fists at carz.

  28. T-rex 29

    vto – check out my link. Best of both worlds.

  29. vto 30

    mm interesting. They will need power to carry me and my mates at least 300km with boards and gear for a day at the beach. Good start though.

  30. Matthew Pilott 31

    vto – read Paul Roberts’ The End of Oil. I implore you. I’ll even lend it to you!

    Hydrogen Fuel Cells are it.

    My Happy Little World has centralised renewables (I.e. NZ’s hydro/geo/wind/Tidal Stream) generating electricity purely for electrolysis. The resulting hydrogen is distributed throughout the land and fed to community-based fuel cells which generate electricity, thus eliminating the national grid and transmission losses. Hydrogen is also sent to fuel stations to power cars’ fuel cells (sorry r0b).

    It could happen in this lifetime, but certain companies have a vested interest in wringing the most out of the fossil fuel industry – Roberts’ said the investment in said industry topped a trillion easily. Maybe several trillion, can’t quite remember. Big number, that. $1,000,000,000,000. So they’re not really looking Beyond Petroleum (there’s a sick f’n joke if ever), I’m afraid.

  31. zANavAShi 32

    Lew: Frivolous Friday.

    Hehehe my thoughts exactly (you sodding thought thief you) 😛

    If only I had three brains to keep up with the three threads here today that are keeping me in hysterics 😀

    Z

  32. T-rex 33

    Matt – I’m replenished enough to respond now.

    Hydrogen fuel cells aren’t really it. Maybe a good solution for portable power, and possibly a not-so-good solution for load levelling (they’re expensive and not amazingly efficient), but a terrible solution for base load power from base load sources.

    Why would you convert electricity to hydrogen, then ship the hydrogen, then put the hydrogen into storage, then convert it back to electricity? It’s infrastructurally intensive and grossly inefficient and horrible expensive.

    Transmission losses aren’t bad at all, and modern transmission systems make them even less. Even with existing tech, they’re still far less than even a single stage of the hydrogen power cycle you describe.

    My money is still on batteries (or ultra caps) for cars.

    The hydrocarbon industry is going to fade away despite the money tied up in it.

    Though I just bought a couple of thousand bucks worth of Babcock Brown Power shares, so hopefully its twilight years last a wee while. Lights have to stay on in the meantime 🙂

  33. zANavAShi 34

    Matthew (deviating from my Friday frivolity for a moment to add a serious contribution) I don’t think it is well known, but there has actually been a lot of research on cheap hydrogen generation by oil companies but their interest is not for fuel purposes but to enrich crappy-grade oils (same theory as saturating crappy-grade cooking oil with hydrogen atoms to make faux-butter) and extend their monopoly over world energy as far as possible beyond the natural conclusion of peak oil.

    Personally, I think we should be looking way beyond the technology of the combustion engine cos it’s ’19th century technology which hit the peak of it’s evolution about the same time as the peak oil was predicted. But if we must persist, then am only in favour of decentralised generation of hydrogen for fuel purposes – smaller scale closer production to the source of use.

    (reverting to frivolity again)Centralised hydrogen generation… Hindenburg flashbacks anyone? (((eeeeeeeeek!)))

    Cheers
    Z

    PS: Screw cycles I wanna pony! 😛

  34. Lew 35

    r0b: “Here’s a prediction for you Phil. In about 30 years time the only fossil fuel powered vehicles in NZ will be in museums. But cycles will be everywhere.”

    Ok, in the grand tradition of booze wagers*, I reckon this is a call big enough for me to bet a case of the customary beverage of 2038 on. R0b, I’ll buy if so, you buy if not – and the onus is on the loser to track the winner down, out of a sense of civic honour.

    * (I already have a case of beer against Monty on the 2008 election, but as yet he’s not had the balls to agree to it.)

    L

  35. r0b 36

    Sure thing Lew, I like a wager as much as the next punter. Though my odds of being here in 30 years to resolve the wager are not that flash, especially if I keep cycling.

  36. T-rex 37

    I’d missed that rant you linked to Lew. I agree. Labour couldn’t market itself out of a wet paper bag – I think your points are pretty consistent with what ‘Sod was saying the other day on Brand Key?

    Probably people like us should spend less time here, and more time coming up with clever publicity. Did you see that “budget 2008” thing? Could it have been any more crap?

    I agree that so long as democracy is one-person-one-vote rather than one-dollar-one-vote the left has no excuse for losing an election. They are just so godawful at conveying their message. To be fair they’re trying to manage the country, while National isn’t even coming up with decent plans for how they would hypothetically manage it, but still…

    To clarify re: the EFA… if I do volunteer activism in support of labour, do they have to count it as a funded activity at some equivalent rate?

    Ha! Steve! Captcha was “reject Notion” – Right on captcha!

  37. Lew 38

    T-rex: Yes, the rant was along much the same sort of lines as Brand Key, but was before and more off-the-cuff than Sod’s uncharacteristically excellent post.

    Yes, the opposition always has the advantage of not having to actually run the country, allowing it to focus on a campaign, but that’s not as strong as the incumbent advantage of actually having your policy make real differences to the lives of voters.

    Another rant I did a couple of days ago centred on how the government (and Labour in particular) seems to think that it (rather than the media) has the ability to promulgate messages to the electorate, which has resulted in a degree of media hostility which doesn’t come down to the structural biases most people complain about, but simple business practice on the part of commercial media operators. In a nutshell, I think the government should be taking a more symbolic, branded approach to their policy and image; they should be making their messages much, much more media-friendly; and they should start to take back some of the terminology which has been turned against them, re-legitimising the business of government which has been successfully been cast as waste or nanny-statism or crony socialism.

    But I’m already too busy to be volunteering my time for this, and I’m also not labouring under any delusions that I’m a greater expert than, say, Simon Pleasants or any of the folk whose actual careers are based in working this stuff through.

    L

  38. Sod’s uncharacteristically excellent post.

    Could you have made that praise any more faint?

  39. T-rex 40

    “and I’m also not labouring under any delusions that I’m a greater expert than”

    Maybe that’s the difference. I’m HELL arrogant, I’m sure I could do better than what’s being done now. But the other half of me thinks that the strategists on the left are simply biding their time, and National is going to get king hit in about 6 weeks. That’s what I’d do.

    I might put some effort into it though. Viral marketing through humour has hugely empowered the loner+computer. Generally I’d rather go mountainbiking, but I don’t want some pro-big-industry-polluter-social-destruction-morons f*cking up my mountainbiking in 20 years time so some investment is possibly justified.

    Cheer up Sod, I thought it was great.

  40. zANavAShi 41

    T-rex says June 21, 2008 at 8:15 am: “…I agree. Labour couldn’t market itself out of a wet paper bag…”

    Actually, I disagree. And I have historically been a very strong supporter of Helen and Co’s branded image.

    Going on the impressions I get from overseas friends who frequently gush comments like “OMG your prime minister is amazing, I saw her canoeing in a documentary on our travel network last week” and “Wow you guys are so lucky to have a leader who’s setting an example to the world about global warming” and “How cool that you guys have a woman leader with the balls to not blindly follow the US/UK into war” I dare to suggest that Helen has done an impeccably fine job of stamping her “brand”…. on the global political landscape.

    If only her image consultant peeps would put the same sodding effort into giving a shit about how the NZ people she is supposed to be accountable to – peeps who are not entranced by the glamorous tourist shots of her walking the Milford track, or oblivious to the way she is backing down to big business in an election year over what really needs to be done to achieve a serious global warming action plan – perceive her.

    I remember feeling really pissed off when I saw her interview on BBC HardTalk earlier this year. It was a great interview and Helen presented herself well, which I initially gave full credit for to the top class BBC interviewer (as I muttered my usual mantra about how bad the NZ media sucks – which it does, to be sure) and it wasn’t till later that the underlying cause of my annoyance became apparent…

    Helen (or her marketing peeps, or both) seem to care more about cultivating the way she looks on the international stage than she does to those of us who elected her. And if their strategists think they can pull a rabbit out of the hat closer to the election on this I think they are sadly mistaken.

    My (uneducated) guess is that they are banking on getting a boost in the same way they did with Brash at the last elections… that Key is gonna make a really REALLY big tory fuk’up.

    Just my 2 cents (and I wouldn’t wager any more than that either hehe) 😉

    Cheers,
    Z

  41. T-rex 42

    So to summarise – Helen/Labour to a good job of representing NZ to the world (which is part of their job as a govt), but a lousy job of representing themselves to NZ (which is part of their job if they want to stay a govt).

    Overseas friends don’t vote in our elections.

    Labour need to work on how they sell themselves here. Most of the people I know (who aren’t unkind or selfish people) are pissed off about paying tax to dole bludgers, the increase in perceived crime, the power crisis and (most of all) that Clark/Labour are so unapologetic about all of the above.

    Now, those who do some research realise that ALL of the above are complete non-issues. Tax to bludgers is trivial, I imagine we could cut the entire benefits scheme and get f*ck all in the hand from it… ignoring the fact that bludgers is more a fantasy than a reality and no one really denies the necessity for a safety net (unless they’re really stupid, like Bryan). Crime is being addressed in the best ways we know how. The ‘power crisis’ is a myth, and in as much as it’s real it’s certainly no fault of the govts!

    People dislike Labour because they’ve been tricked, and they’ve been tricked because (to date) Labour have been trying to fight back in the wrong way.

    I doubt anyone who went and saw Cullen at drinking liberally the other week could criticise either their ethics or their successes. Why don’t they find a way to get that image into the public eye? As far as I can tell, they’re not. I know a huge number of people who are on seriously low incomes and think they’ll be better off under National!!! AS IF!!!

  42. zANavAShi 43

    And a very fine summary it was too T (can’t call you Rex anymore cos I notice there’s another Rex here hehe). Just wanna add two things from my own personal perspective:

    Firstly, I come from a family that has supported Labour for generations – since there was a Labour party – (my dear ole gramps was a personal friend of Big Norms since childhood even and those are the days we remember most fondly) so I dunno that I’ll ever get to the point where I will “dislike” them… but I have certainly become disillusioned.

    What I dislike is that I feel tricked that in voting for Labour (as a leftwing party) we got a centrist party – in the very same way which I dislike the Nats whom if we voted for them as a centrist party we know it’s gonna be way right of what we thought we were signing up for.

    I dislike that rightward creep that seems to have happened in worldwide politics since 911 (or maybe it was happening before then, but I’m no historian…) which reminds me of the way the fashion industry fudges dress sizes today – where what was on the rack in the 1960’s as a “size 16” now sits on the rack labelled as a “size 12” cos they don’t want the public to be horrified by them for providing an accurate measure of how fat the population at large has become.

    And secondly I wanted to add that I think Helen markets more than just NZ internationally, I have the distinct sense that she uses the global popularity of the NZ brand to boost her own personal profile – and in a way that reminds me of how Hillary Clinton has groomed her own personal brand since she decided to make a run for the US presidency. I heard somewhere Helen was looking at some high-ranking UN position when she finally retires from NZ politics, so this would make sense I guess.

    On the other hand tho (and to echo the comment you made about Cullen au naturelle as he appeared at drinking liberally) maybe the image we see of Helen on the international stage is closer to who she really is (in her own kinda au naturelle political ideals self). The small part of me that hasn’t succumbed to disillusionment yet hopes this is the case – cos I really miss that Helen. The Helen who would not bow down to pressure and apologise for a comment about the Iraq war not happening if Gore had won – how many of you can honestly say you weren’t thinking the exact same thing, yes?

    Yikes I just realised how off topic I’ve been aiding this thread to travel, so I think that means it’s time for me to STFU now hehehe 😀

    You are (mostly LOL) a damned good read tho T-Rex. Cheers!

  43. Lew 44

    Sod:

    No, I genuinely thought it was a worthy and insightful post, and quite different from your usual matter, hence `uncharacteristically’ 🙂

    Z/T:
    `the other half of me thinks that the strategists on the left are simply biding their time, and National is going to get king hit in about 6 weeks. That’s what I’d do.’

    It’s not what I’d do, but I do hope so.

    `Most of the people I know (who aren’t unkind or selfish people) are pissed off about paying tax to dole bludgers, the increase in perceived crime, the power crisis and (most of all) that Clark/Labour are so unapologetic about all of the above.’

    My italics above show the important bit for me – this is what my point about re-legitimising governance and social democratic ideals is about. The Nats and others have succeeded in changing `safety net’ in the minds of voters to `kiwis paying tax to dole bludgers’, and other issues are similarly maldefined. The government aren’t apologetic because they should not be apologetic, but until they are able to control those terminology heights people will always think they should be.

    `So to summarise – Helen/Labour to a good job of representing NZ to the world (which is part of their job as a govt), but a lousy job of representing themselves to NZ (which is part of their job if they want to stay a govt).’

    Quite right. Nobody ever built a better country from opposition.

    `I know a huge number of people who are on seriously low incomes and think they’ll be better off under National!!! AS IF!!!’

    Yeah, but if we presume at least some rationality, people hold this belief for one of two general reasons: 1. they’re right (which I reject); or 2. they haven’t been convinced otherwise. A would-be government’s job is in the first place to convince the electorate that its vision will improve things, and then to implement that vision and actually improve things. Clark’s government did the first very well in 1999 but has singularly failed to do it since; in my opinion they’ve done an exception job at the second all the way through, but it looks like they’ll not get the chance to continue it because of the failure to do the first consistently throughout.

    L

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    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
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  • Only the least intelligent students, with bad parents, will attend the nonsense climate strike
    We all know that bad parents simply don’t care about their children’s education. Most truants have loser parents, and grow up to be involved with crime, or in low paid employment usually like their parents. The nonsense so-called “climate strike” coming up will be attended mostly by the least intelligent ...
    An average kiwiBy admin@averagekiwi.com
    23 hours ago
  • Professional Internet Trolls being used to push manmade climate change lies
    Is the terrorist Organisation Greenpeace and the loony Green parties around the World hiring professional internet trolls? I have noticed a trend lately where if you post research, news articles or even comments that show the manmade climate change scam to be just that, you are immediately attacked, often within ...
    An average kiwiBy admin@averagekiwi.com
    23 hours ago
  • Climate Change: Strike!
    Today is the first day of the global climate strike. Led by schoolkids, people all around the world are going to protest to demand action on climate change. New Zealand isn't doing it till next Friday (join us!), but if you want to get active early, there's plenty to do ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Climate Change: Squandering our opportunity?
    The Herald has a story today about the 400 MW of wind power currently under construction. Good news, right? Except that none of it is being driven by policy (instead, its about replacing Contact Energy's Taranaki Combined Cycle gas-fired power plant, due to shut down in 2022), and most of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Protect The King!
    To Protect and Serve: When the Prime Minister finds herself enmeshed in the coils of a full-blown political scandal, her colleagues and party comrades have only one priority: to release her as swiftly – and with as little lasting injury – as possible. Is this what Jacinda Ardern’s colleagues and ...
    1 day ago
  • The rot at the top.
    When military leaders cover up and lie to elected civilian authorities, the foundation of democratic civil-military relations is undermined because it is those authorities who are entrusted to hold the military accountable to the public that they mutually serve. But this is only true if civilian political authorities take their ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 day ago
  • Challenging the voting age in court
    The Make It 16 campaign to lower the voting age is launching this afternoon, and they have already announced plans to challenge the law in court:The campaign, named "Make it 16" will launch at Parliament on Friday, with plans to take their case to the High Court, testing the rights ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Israel’s elections herald a long siesta
    by Daphna Whitmore The long years of Netanyahu’s reign are drawing to an end. For years he has epitomized reactionary zionism as he oversaw hundreds of thousands of Jewish settlers seize land in the West Bank. There are now 700,000 settlers, putting an end to the myth that Israel was ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 day ago
  • Petrol companies promise prices will come back down once peace is restored to the Middle East
    BP, Z and Mobil all insist that petrol price hikes are temporary, “in a very literal sense.” The nation’s major petrol providers are trying to allay customer fears over prices, promising that they’ll move to lower them again “immediately” when the Middle East is returned to its formerly peaceful state. ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 days ago
  • All Blacks unveil boat for Rugby World Cup 2019
    South African coach Rassie Erasmus says he has no idea what they’re going to do about the boat. In a highly anticipated press conference this afternoon, All Blacks coach Steve Hansen has finally unveiled the team’s boat for its Rugby World Cup 2019 campaign. In a press conference that went ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 days ago
  • An increasingly shoddy coverup
    The Operation Burnham inquiry continued to question senior NZDF staff today, and their shoddy coverup over their knowledge of civilian casualties continue to fall apart. If you recall, first, we were asked to believe that it was all a series of "mistakes and errors": a senior officer with multiple degrees ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • If we are to avoid making the earth uninhabitable, we need to rapidly decarbonise our civilisation, and cut emissions to zero as quickly as possible. This seems like an impossible task, but its not. Pushing hard on a few technologies and trends will let us halve emissions in a decade:Greenhouse ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • A further attack on transparency
    The Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill (No 2) had part of its committee stage yesterday. its a generally tedious bill about the nitty-gritty of local government reorganisation. But it includes a clause making the Local Government Commission subject to the Ombudsmen Act, and hence the OIA. Great! Except of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Ihumātao and Treaty settlements
    Yesterday Ihumātao's mana whenua reached a consensus that they would like their land back, and asked the government to negotiate with Fletcher's for its return. The government's response? Try and undermine that consensus, while talking about how doing anything would undermine existing Treaty settlements. The first is just more bad ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Protecting our history
    Its Suffrage Day, the 126th anniversary of women winning the right to vote (but not stand in elections) in New Zealand. And to celebrate, the government has bought Kate Sheppard's house in Christchurch:The government has bought Kate Sheppard's former home in Christchurch for more than $4 million. The Ilam villa ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Climate Change: Ostracising the coal-burners
    The UN climate summit is happening in new York next week, and unlike previous years, coal-burners and denier-states are not being invited to speak:Leading economies such as Japan and Australia will not be invited to speak at next week’s crunch UN climate change summit, as their continued support for coal ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Jojo Tamihere Salutes Herr Goff.
    Get Back Jojo! The elation in Mayor Phil Goff’s camp may be easily imagined as they watched social media light up in indignation at challenger John Tamihere’s "Sieg Heil to that" quip. Just when JT’s notoriously right-wing, sexist and homophobic stains were beginning to fade back into his ‘colourful’ past, ...
    3 days ago
  • Hard News: A fun but flawed weed documentary
    Patrick Gower is good value when he's high. Not that I've ever, you know, got stoned with him. But in the second part of his documentary Patrick Gower on Weed, he does what you'd expect in a modern weed documentary and immerses himself – first with a doctor, then a ...
    3 days ago
  • Candidate Survey: Western Bay of Plenty – Local Body Elections 2019
    We surveyed candidates on their attitudes to issues facing the Western Bay Region, find out what they think: “Closing the Gap” Tauranga, one of the area groups of Income Equality Aotearoa NZ Inc., has surveyed all candidates in the three local body elections to discover attitudes to some basic issues ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    3 days ago
  • Project Nettie calls on scientists to defend biology
    Please spread widely, and sign, to support science and rationalism over the new irrationalism sweeping universities and institutions.  PROJECT NETTIE Sexual reproduction, the generation of offspring by fusion of genetic material from two different individuals, evolved over 1 billion years ago. It is the reproductive strategy of all higher animals ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    3 days ago
  • I’m glad I don’t live in Auckland
    Just when I was thinking that Palmerston North's mayoral race (which includes a convicted child molester / public wanker and a convicted child beater) was the worst in the country, Auckland mayoral candidate John Tamihere opened his mouth:Auckland mayoral candidate John Tamihere is being slammed for using the words "sieg ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Index of Power Update, 2018-19: China #2
    We reprint below an article from the excellent website the Economics of Imperialism by Tony Norfield This is an update of the statistics for my Index of Power, using data for 2018-19 and discussing what a country’s ranking reflects. The major change is that China’s rank has shifted up and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    3 days ago
  • Climate Change: A history lesson
    Why is New Zealand climate change policy so crap? The Herald this morning has a long article on the twists and turns of climate change policy in New Zealand [paywalled / depaywall script], which shows where we've been. The short version is that the government first began worrying about this ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • What the All Blacks Mean to Us
    The All Blacks have been, for more than a century, arguably the most successful International sports team in the world. But they are more than that; even for those Kiwis who are immune to the charms of rugby (and there are more than a few), the All Blacks are ambassadors ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    4 days ago
  • No one is born into the wrong body
    A short and incredibly powerful speech from a young lesbian woman. No one is born in the wrong body. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    4 days ago
  • Contempt
    Back in June, the UK Court of Appeal ruled that that country's continued arms sales to Saudi Arabia were unlawful. So you'd expect that the UK government stopped approving them, right?Of course not:The government has apologised for breaching a court ruling against the sale of weapons to Saudi Arabia that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Covering up the cover-up
    Yesterday NZDF officials were put on the stand about the lies they had told over Operation Burnham, making implausible claims that it was all a big mistake. But along the way, we learned they had already been put on the spot about it by a previous Defence Minister, who had ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Not as important as they think they are
    Farmers have been whining a lot lately, about the methane targets in the Zero Carbon Bill, about Canterbury's proposed nitrogen limits, and about the government's new proposals to stop them from shitting in our lakes and rivers. These policies are "throwing farmers under the tractor", they will force farmers off ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Behind Every Good Woman Should Stand – Another Good Woman.
    Alone, Alone, All, All, Alone: To argue that the Prime Minister is the victim of her advisers’ failure to keep her informed may offer Jacinda some measure of exoneration – but only at the cost of casting her as a hopeless political ingénue. A star-dusted muppet, whose only purpose is to ...
    5 days ago
  • Poor quality, poorly educated kiddie ‘Journalists’ spreading fake news
    In times of hysteria about the “World coming to an end” and “rising sea levels” so-called ‘Journalists’ who can barely spell words longer than four letters are having a ball! Though the majority of the Public have worked out that manmade climate change is nothing short of pseudo-science, and the ...
    An average kiwiBy admin@averagekiwi.com
    5 days ago
  • Chris Trotter on the BFD
    I don't want to give pblicity to certain parts of the internet that are better left to fester in their own irrelevance (I know, a bit like this place) but the listing of Chris Trotter as a 'author' on Cameron Slater's spinoff website, the BFD requires some explanation.Now, I don't ...
    5 days ago
  • Sex is not a spectrum
    The text below is a Twitter thread by Heather Heying that explains the essence of sexual reproduction and it long evolutionary history. She is an evolutionary biologist and a “professor-in-exile” after she and her husband, Bret Weinstein, stood up to supporters of an enforced “Day of Absence” for white staff and teachers ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    5 days ago
  • Climate Change: Trees, aviation, and offsets
    With crunch time for new Zealand climate policy approaching, most of the New Zealand media have got on board with a global reporting effort to cover the issue. There's one strand of stories today about polling and what it shows about changing public attitudes to the crisis, but the strand ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Pissing-Off The Israelis Is A High-Risk Strategy.
    Dangerous Foes: For those readers of Bowalley Road who feel disposed to dismiss any prospect of an Israeli destabilisation of New Zealand politics, the example of the United Kingdom repays close attention. Ever since the election of Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the British Labour Party, the Israelis have sanctioned, funded and ...
    5 days ago
  • Something to go to in Wellington
    Make It 16, the youth-led campaign to lower New Zealand's voting age, is holding an official campaign launch at Parliament this Friday from 16:30. If you'd like to attend, you can register using EventBrite here. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • A founding member responds to Peace Action Wellington
    by Don Franks It was a lovely sunny Wellington afternoon with blue skies above  the beaches.  In Courtenay Place, political activists packed out a stuffy upstairs room for an important meeting. The assembled pacifists, anarchists, communists and independent young radicals of Peace Action Wellington felt the need for a mission ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    5 days ago
  • “Mistakes and errors”
    Current and former NZDF top brass are being publicly grilled this week by the hit and run inquiry over their public responses to allegations of civilian casualties. Previously, they've claimed there were no casualties, a position which led them to lie to Ministers and to the public. Now, they're saying ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • “Homosexuality is same-sex attraction and relationships, not heterosexuals with delusions of gende...
    by Rafael D. Quiles (gender-critical gay man from Puerto Rico) The writing on the wall is right in people’s faces and people just don’t see it or don’t want to. What could actually possess a heterosexual male to want to feminize himself and claim that he is a lesbian? Because ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    6 days ago
  • Trump: “Where’s my favourite dictator?”
    From the Wall Street Journal:Inside a room of the ornately decorated Hotel du Palais during last month’s Group of Seven summit in Biarritz, France, President Trump awaited a meeting with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al Sisi. Mr. Trump looked over a gathering of American and Egyptian officials and called out in ...
    6 days ago
  • Magdalen Burns, 1983-2019, fighter for women’s liberation
    by the Redline blog collective At Redline we are very saddened to hear of the death of Magdalen Burns who passed away on the morning of Friday, September 13 (British time). Magdalen was a great fighter for the rights of women in general and lesbian women in particular, a defender ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Parliament and the Executive
    The Brexit issue has certainly brought with it a series of apparently difficult constitutional issues, many of them concerning the respective roles of the executive and parliament. Most of them arise because of the unwillingness of MPs, despite their professions to the contrary, to be bound by a constitutional rarity ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • The Abigail Article; Martyn Bradbury’s Article, and My Response
    . . This blogpost is different to my usual format of reporting on issues… Since July 1011, I have blogged on a variety of political issues; near always political and/or environmental; mostly highly critical of the previous National Government. Other issues included Israeli occupation of Palestinian lands and repression of ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • Police will have to wear silly Buckingham Palace hats from now on, says Police Minister
    Those close to the Police Minister believe the initiative may be the result of Nash “seeing a great deal” on AliExpress. In a move that comes seemingly out of nowhere, Police Minister Stuart Nash announced this afternoon that he expects all frontline staff to don bearskin hats, famously worn by ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • A sensible crackdown
    The government has released its Arms Legislation Bill, containing the second tranche of changes to gun laws following the March 15 massacre. And it all looks quite sensible: a national gun register, higher penalties for illegal possession and dealing, tighter restrictions on arms dealers and shooting clubs, and a shorter ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • California bans private prisons
    Private prisons are a stain on humanity. Prison operators explicitly profit from human misery, then lobby for longer prisons terms so they can keep on profiting. And in the US, prison companies run not only local and state prisons, but also Donald Trump's immigration concentration camps. Faced with this moral ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Why PPPs are a bad idea
    When National was in power, they were very keen on Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) - basicly, using private companies to finance public infrastructure as a way of hiding debt from the public. They were keen on using them for everything - roads, schools, hospitals. But as the UK shows, that "service" ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A Movement That No Longer Moves.
    Moving And Shaking: There was a time when people spoke matter-of-factly about the “labour movement” – a political phenomenon understood to embrace much more than the Labour Party. Included within the term’s definition was the whole trade union movement – many of whose members looked upon the Labour Party as ...
    1 week ago
  • NZ ‘left’ politically embracing extreme postmodernism
    by Philip Ferguson Much of the left, even people who formally identify as marxists, have collapsed politically in the face of postmodern gender theory of the sort pioneered by American philosopher Judith Butler. For Butler even biological sex is socially constructed. “If the immutable character of sex is contested, perhaps ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • The obvious question
    The media is reporting that the (alleged) Labour party sexual assaulter has resigned from their job at Parliament, which means hopefully he won't be turning up there making people feel unsafe in future. Good. But as with everything about this scandal, it just raises other questions. Most significantly: why the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The moment I found out that you found out, I acted swiftly
    By Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern I am every bit as angry as you are. I am every bit as disappointed as you must be. The people with power, oversight and the ability to do something about these processes within the Labour Party should be ashamed. Whoever those people are, I ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • This is why people hate property developers
    Property developers think there is an "oversupply" of houses in Auckland:High turnover rates and falling prices may be a sign that there are too many new houses going in to some parts of Auckland, commentators say. [...] Property developer David Whitburn said there was a "bit of an oversupply" in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Australia to Pacific: “Fuck you, you can all drown”
    World leaders are meeting in New York in two weeks for the 2019 Climate Action Summit, where they are expected to announce new and more ambitious targets to stop the world from burning. But the Australian Prime Minister won't be there, despite being in the USA at the time:Scott Morrison ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Implausible ignorance
    Labour Party president Nigel Haworth resigned yesterday over the party's sexual assault scandal. But while that's good news, its unlikely to take away the stench of a coverup. Because according to Paula Bennett in Parliament yesterday, pretty much everyone in the Prime Minister's office was involved as well:I have been ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Labour’s Fatal Flaw.
     Two-Faced? Labour insiders' commitment to the neoliberal status quo puts them at odds with their party’s membership; its trade union affiliates; and a majority of Labour voters, but this only serves to strengthen the perception they have of themselves as a special elite. Among the lesser breeds, they’ll talk up a ...
    1 week ago
  • Ten reasons the Tories do NOT want an election
    There has been a lot of talk about Boris Johnson wanting an election, and he has blustered with great gusto about 'chicken' Jeremy Corbyn refusing one, but I think there are many reasons why he is secretly glad he has been refused the opportunity:The Tories are an utter rabble,tearing themselves ...
    1 week ago
  • Prorogation Illegal, rule Scottish judges
    Scottish appeal court judges have declared that Boris Johnson’s decision to suspend parliament in the run-up to the October Brexit deadline is unlawful. The three judges, chaired by Lord Carloway, Scotland’s most senior judge, overturned an earlier ruling that the courts did not have the powers to interfere in the prime ...
    1 week ago
  • Let me explain what I meant by Everyday New Zealanders
    By Simon Bridges. The following is a press release from the office of Simon Bridges, leader of The National Party. Key ora, New Zealand. Happy Maori Language Week. Look, I’m writing to you today because I want to clear something up. There’s been a lot of kerfuffle around some things ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Yes, the SIS is subject to the Public Records Act
    I understand there's some stuff going round about how the SIS "was removed from the list of public offices covered by the Public Records Act in 2017". The context of course being their records derived from US torture, which will be disposed of or sealed. The good news is that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • An evidence-based discussion of the Canadian fluoride/IQ study
    Dr. Christopher Labos and Jonathan Jarry discuss the recent Canadian fluoride/IQ research. They provide an expert analysis of the paper and its problems. Click on image to go to podcast. The critical debate about the recent ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Australia in denial
    Australia is burning down again, and meanwhile its natural disaster minister is denying climate change:Australia’s minister responsible for drought and natural disasters, David Littleproud, has said that he doesn’t “know if climate change is manmade”. Clarifying earlier comments that the question is “irrelevant” when considering the Coalition government’s response to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Philippines activist speaking on the Duterte tyranny
    Auckland Philippines Solidarity is excited to host Professor Judy Taguiwalo for a speaking tour of NZ in September. She is a well-known activist in the Philippines and was a political prisoner under the Marcos dictatorship. Professor Taguiwalo briefly served as a Cabinet member under President Duterte but was forced from ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Disgust
    I have no special insights to offer on the Labour sexual assault coverup. All I have is disgust. Disgust that an organisation could fail its people so badly. Disgust that they punished the victims rather than the perpetrator. Disgust that its party hacks are apparently blaming the victims for demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Speak Up for Women calls out Greens’ censorship
    This open letter to the Green Party was penned after an opinion piece by Jill Abigail, a feminist and founding member of the party, was censored by the Greens’ leadership. (Redline has reprinted her article here).The intolerance of the Green Party leaders and their acceptance of the misogyny of gender ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Member’s Day: End of Life Choice, part 3
    Today is a Member's day, and David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill continues its slow crawl through its committee stage. They're spending the whole day on it today, though the first hour is likely to be spent on voting left over from last time. After that they'll move on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Flight to Los Angeles turned back after passengers decide they don’t want to go anymore
    An ambitious plan to fly to Los Angeles petered out into a brief sight-seeing trip and a desire to return home and get some sleep before work tomorrow. Air New Zealand has confirmed a flight to Los Angeles last night was turned back about a quarter of the way into ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Indigenous Futures: defuturing and futuring – an analytical framework for policy development?
    There appears to be consensus – by omission – that the concept of indigenous futures should be accepted at face value. So I scavenged the internet to see if I could locate an academic descriptor or a framework around how we think about it as a concept, and whether it ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    2 weeks ago
  • Cadbury rumoured to be releasing the Pineapple Trump
    Here’s another novelty chocolate to shove in your gob, New Zealand Cadbury could be seeking to make itself great again with a rumoured new release: Pineapple Trumps, a spin on its classic chocolate-encased pineapple treat and do-it-yourself tooth remover. The global confectionery manufacturer and bumbling “before” character in an infomercial, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • The coming resource war.
    During my time in the Pentagon I had the privilege of sitting down with military leaders and defence and security officials from a variety of Latin American nations. Sometimes I was present as a subordinate assistant to a senior US defence department official, sometimes as part of a delegation that ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    2 weeks ago
  • Māori Language Week with The Civilian
    Kia ora, Aotearoa. It’s that magical time of year. Te Wiki o te Reo Māori. In English, the week that frightens talk radio. As you probably know by now, all your favourite media outlets are participating, some more successfully than others. Stuff has changed its name to Puna for the ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Will Horizons act on climate change?
    Local body elections are coming up next month. And it looks like all Palmerston North candidates for Horizons (the Manawatu-Whanganui Regional Council) want to take action on climate change:Climate change is set to be a key issue in Palmerston North for the next three years if those wanting to get ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • BORA reform is stalled
    Eighteen months ago, the government promised to strengthen the Bill of Rights Act, by explicitly affirming the power of the courts to issue declarations of inconsistency and requiring Parliament to formally respond to them. So how's that going? I was curious, so I asked for all advice about the proposal. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Corbyn and Brexit
    As the Brexit saga staggers on, the focus is naturally enough on the Prime Minister and his attempts to achieve Brexit “do or die”. But the role played by the Leader of the Opposition is of almost equal interest and complexity. The first problem for Jeremy Corbyn is that he ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • A ditch for him to die in
    Last week, English Prime Minister Boris Johnson boldly declared that he would rather die be dead in a ditch than delay Brexit. Unfortunately for him, the UK parliament accepted the challenge, and promptly dug one for him. The "rebellion bill" requires him to ask for and secure yet another temporary ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Warning! Warning! Danger Jacinda Ardern! Danger Marama Davidson! Warning!
    Lost In Political Space: The most important takeaway from this latest Labour sexual assault scandal, which (if I may paraphrase Nixon’s White House counsel’s, John Dean’s, infamous description of Watergate) is “growing like a cancer” on the premiership, is the Labour Party organisation’s extraordinary professional paralysis in the face of ...
    2 weeks ago

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