WHOIS and Prentice’s misuse and motives

Lynn Prentice (lprent) has tried to defend his abusive attack on a young person who was involved in a spoof political site, Kiwi-O-Meter, which has since been taken down by the site owner.

I think his excuses are disingenuous bull.

But there’s another thing that he hasn’t defended. I don’t think he can credibly defend it.

The title of Prentice’s post at The Standard shows it’s attacking and abusive intent – Ben Guerin: a dirty politics fuckwit.

Personal abuse from Prentice is normal, as is over-reacting. Less common is his use of a post to attack someone like this.But what stood out was his posting the personal contact details – email address, phone number and home address – of the target of his apparent anger.

While his intent in doing this could be argued Prentice applied strict moderation, personally clearing all comments, banning some commenters and admitting to trashing about 25% of comments. But Prentice passed this comment from Atiawa:

I just sent him a text letting him know what a shit head he is. Can’t see much harm in anyone else telling him the same.

So Prentice approved of the contact details he posted being used to abuse Guerin, and he approved the comment “Can’t see much harm in anyone else telling him the same”.

Prentice claims to be a Internet expert so he must have been aware of the possibility, even probability, that his publishing personal details would result in personal abuse.

And when challenged on his actions by ‘Izzy’…

I think it’s disappointing that you saw fit to publish his contact information, which apparently commentators here have now used to send him abusive messages.

He said something about your team that you didn’t like, which pissed you off, and that’s chill. You don’t have to like it, you don’t have to like his politics, you’re allowed to question whether the site was made in a work capacity or done independently (which he has answered). But he doesn’t deserve the level of vitriol in this post, and he doesn’t deserve texts and emails telling him he’s a piece of shit. Being a Nat doesn’t make him immune to being hurt by this kind of thing. Be kind.

One of Prentice’s excuses was:

The “voitrol” was because he didn’t provide any information on the site to identify who was responsible for it.

That’s an interesting accusation.

If a person wanted to find out who was responsible for The Standard what would they find? Their about page specifically says they won’t identify themselves.

Why don’t you say who you are?

Some of the authors here use their real names, but others choose to blog anonymously for a variety of reasons. Some of us have professional reasons for doing so, others of us are reluctant to expose ourselves to the kind of personal threats sometimes made online. Those of us using pseudonyms discussed this issue long and hard before we began and came down on the side of anonymity. We hope you can see why. You might also want to contemplate the implications of this link.

If you want to get hold of us, have a look on the Contact Page.

The contact page also doesn’t identify who is responsible for the site. It gives two email addresses, but when i emailed one of them last week on a serious matter I didn’t get a reply.

So it appears that Prentice is applying one standard to Guerin, using it as an excuse to reveal personal contact details, but  ignoring that standard himself.

What Prentice has done looks like it could be a breach of conditions of use of the WHOIS look up – I detailed this in Prentice actions “strictly forbidden” by InternetNZ.

% Users are advised that the following activities are strictly forbidden.
%
% Using any information contained in the WHOIS query output to attempt a
% targeted contact campaign with any person, or any organisation, using any
% medium.

Prentice’s response to this:

Bearing in mind the gutless wonders that you and other people are about acting on your words, which in this case should be to make a complaint, I’ll write to InternetNZ – firstly asking them to inform me of any complaints (I anticipate none to date), and secondly asking for a ruling on what you fuckwits should be asking them based on your idiotic allegations.

If he thinks that the correct way to deal with misuse is to submit a complaint to InternetNZ why didn’t he do that regarding his complaint about Guerin rather than launching an online attack on him and not only deliberately or recklessly exposing him to abuse but also personally allowing abusive comments including a comment encouraging more abuse using the contact details posted.

Another double standard.

Prentice has defended his use of WHOIS contact information.

I didn’t incite anyone. I wrote an opinion about a domain owner deliberately misusing their domain by non-transparently masquerading as someone else. To do so, I used and published the chain of evidence that showed who owned the domain and what their affiliations were. There was nothing in my post that was a ” ….attempt a targeted contact campaign with any person, or any organisation…”

This is exactly what the whois is intended for.

His post is more than ‘an opinion’, it is a vindictive looking attack on Guerin and it encouraged others to attack Guerin using publicised contact information.

Prentice has also stated:

But as usual, rather than dealing with the issue that was in my post, you chose to make a big deal about publishing the information. Including the identifying information that is specifically public to allow the identification of the owners and operators of domains. You appear to have been too lazy to look at why that detail was actually published in my post. It was there to make it quite specific exactly who I was talking about. That is something that is typically done with addresses, emails addresses and phone numbers.

Prentice has previously complained about phone numbers and addresses being published on Whale Oil. He is well aware of what can happen when details like that are promoted on attack blogs. Another double standard.

He has also stated:

Actually I suspect that you are too rigidly cast into your unthinking attitudes to actually look at any evidence.

But others who still operate their intelligence may actually read the whois policies amd why they are formed. That is useful for the ongoing debate.

I frequently look for evidence, I think I do this more than most in political forums.

Here are excerpts the Terms of Service from WHOIS:

1. Acceptance of Terms

By using http://www.who.is (“Who.is”) you agree that you are over 18 years of age and have the ability to enter into a binding agreement. Any access to or use of Who.is constitutes acceptance of the following Terms of Service (“TOS”).

IF YOU DO NOT AGREE TO ANY PROVISION IN THE FOLLOWING TOS OR IF ANY SECTION OF THE TOS IS BREACHED BY YOU; YOU ARE NOT AUTHORIZED TO, AND SHALL NOT USE OR CONTINUE TO USE, OUR SERVICES.

2. Responsibilities and Regulations

Use of our services requires that you agree to uphold the following responsibilities and abide by the following regulations. Failure to do so in any constitutes immediate breach of this TOS.

You may not use our site to engage in any behavior that violates any local law or any law or regulation that is applicable to the venue created in this agreement. This prohibition includes, but is in no way limited to, use of our products or services in any way associated with activities that:

(b) attack, harass, threaten, defame, or otherwise infringe on the legal rights of any other individual or entity including but not limited to protection afforded to them via applicable criminal or privacy regulations.

Prentice’s post certainly looks like an attack on Guerin. It also enables harassment in the comments by allowing more abuse to be published. And by posting contact details and allowing a comment that admits using those details to abuse and harass Guerin and encourage further abuse Prentice appears to be a willing party to this.

(c) violate or would cause Who.is to violate any law, regulation or ethical standard. Who.is reserves the right to determine and establish what constitutes both what qualifies as a violation or ethical standard in our sole discretion at any time.

Prentice violates ethical standards he himself writes and complains about and imposes on others. I don’t know specifically what current WHOIS ethical standards are.

Prentice also wrote:

I wasn’t asking for a right of reply – I really just think you are being a stupid idiot. I was merely informing you of the steps I’d be taking to shut the internet morons like yourself up by exposing exactly how little you understood about why the whois is there.

This is what WHOIS suggests it’s information is for:

What is WHOIS data used for?

WHOIS is indispensable to the smooth operation of the DNS and is used for many legitimate purposes, including:

  • To determine whether or not a given domain is available.
  • To contact network administrators for resolution of technical matters related to networks associated with a domain name (e.g., DNS or routing matter, origin and path analysis of DoS and other network-based attacks).
  • To diagnose registration difficulties. WHOIS queries provide information that is often useful in resolving a registration ownership issue, such as the creation and expiration dates and the identity of the registrar.
  • To contact web administrators for resolution of technical matters associated with a domain name.
  • To obtain the real world identity, business location and contact information of an online merchant or business, or generally, any organization that has an online presence.
  • To associate a company, organization, or individual with a domain name, and to identify the party that is operating a web or other publicly accessible service using a domain name, for commercial or other purposes.
  • To contact a domain name registrant for the purpose of discussing and negotiating a secondary market transaction related to a registered domain name.
  • To notify a domain name registrant of the registrant’s obligation to maintain accurate registration information.
  • To contact a domain name registrant on matters related to the protection and enforcement of intellectual property rights.
  • To establish or look into an identity in cyberspace, and as part of an incident response following an Internet or computer attack. (Security professionals and law enforcement agents use WHOIS to identify points of contact for a domain name.)
  • To gather investigative leads (i.e., to identify parties from whom additional information might be obtained). Law enforcement agents use WHOIS to find email addresses and attempt to identify the location of an alleged perpetrator of a crime involving fraud.
  • To investigate spam, law enforcement agents look to the WHOIS database to collect information on the website advertised in the spam.

I don’t see anything  there that suggests publishing contact information as a part of petty politically motivated attacks. Nor vindictive personal attacks.

Lynn – you say you wrote the post and managed the comments to expose Guerin (for doing similar things to what is done on The Standard).

Your words:

The “voitrol” was because he didn’t provide any information on the site to identify who was responsible for it. As far as I’m concerned he was concealing who was responsible from the public.

You easily found out who was responsible – that’s what WHOIS is for, isn’t it. Guerin had also been open about his involvement elsewhere in social media and other blogs had posted about who was responsible – without going to the level of abuse and exposure you did.

But all that aside Lynn can you explain this:

Why, after publishing abuse from yourself, contact information and abuse from others, and this comment from Atiawa:

I just sent him a text letting him know what a shit head he is. Can’t see much harm in anyone else telling him the same.

Why, after Guerin advised you that as a result of what you posted he been abused (and you published):

Unfortunately, after my personal details including phone number, postal address and email address were published on an article on The Standard, I receive a significant amount of hatred-filled vitriol directly at me personally via txt message, phone calls, emails and messages sent to my personal Facebook and Twitter accounts.

Why, five hours after Guerin posted that so you were well aware of what happened after you posted his contact details, in direct response to Guerin, why did you post this?

I have been busy this morning and lunch is a bit short for a full reply.

Here is Pete George, registrant of yournz.org.nz (just because I am thinking about complaining to him about his stupid and ignorant post this morning pushing this PR line)

This is explicitly public information to allow people to be able to check who is responsible for a domain, and for them to be able to contact them if there is an issue. This is a concept known as personal responsibility. Get used to it.

Lynn, why did you do this?

Prentice right of reply on Ben Guerin post

On Thursday I posted Prentice actions “strictly forbidden” by InternetNZ.

This related to an lprent post at The Standard: Ben Guerin: a dirty politics fuckwit

Lynn Prentice has chose to respond in comments but I think it’s fair to give it equal exposure so here it is in full:

So rather than being a useless lazy critic, lay a complaint with InternetNZ.

I didn’t incite anyone. I wrote an opinion about a domain owner deliberately misusing their domain by non-transparently masquerading as someone else. To do so, I used and published the chain of evidence that showed who owned the domain and what their affiliations were. There was nothing in my post that was a ” ….attempt a targeted contact campaign with any person, or any organisation…”

This is exactly what the whois is intended for. Now about of strawman arguments that you, Duncan Brown or any other idiot craphouse lawyers invent.

Bearing in mind the gutless wonders that you and other people are about acting on your words, which in this case should be to make a complaint, I’ll write to InternetNZ – firstly asking them to inform me of any complaints (I anticipate none to date), and secondly asking for a ruling on what you fuckwits should be asking them based on your idiotic allegations.

And

BTW: I posted your Open Letter link into the internal forums. I have no idea why you think that we act as a collective (apart from annoying over optimistic statement in the about from 2007 that we have never gotten rid of). We never agree on anything. We operate as a cooperative as has been stated many times and is inherent is the statement about using a trust further in on the about.

So I’d think that your appeal is likely to be pretty useless, even excluding your strange ideas and that I actually run the plant…. But hey, if an author missed reading it – they now have their chance.

I’ve responded in part on that post but will do so in more detail here soon in comments.

Guerin responds to Prentice

Ben Guerin has responded to the attack on him at The Standard Ben Guerin: a dirty politics fuckwit by Lynn Prentice.

Dirty Politics Fuckwit

Good morning! As the subject of this post, I felt it was only appropriate that I provide a response.

Last night I tweeted the following: https://twitter.com/bjhguerin/status/620538187501277185

Monday 13th July 2015
Ben Guerin

Comment on How Kiwi Are You website

On Sunday the 12th of July I was a member of the Young Nats team that produced the Kiwi-O-Meter on the url http://howkiwiareyou.nz. I would like to publicly state that this website is not at all affiliated with the New Zealand National Party, New Zealand Parliament, or any National Party MPs; and is not endorsed by, or representative of, the views of my employer.

The Kiwi-O-Meter was developed solely by the Young Nats, with no financial compensation, for distribution on the Young Nats Facebook and Twitter pages.

Within 6 hours of launching, more than 25,000 people visited the site. Feedback from users was overwhelmingly positive, with people from all over the political spectrum indicating their support for a light-hearted, satirical website that lampooned the racist and ill-conceived statements made by Phil Twyford and Andrew Little regarding the Auckland housing market over the weekend.

As the registrar of the domain my details were publicly available. Perhaps this was a mistake, but I am a supporter of transparency, and made no secret of my involvement. The fact that the site was made by Young Nats was publicly acknowledged by myself personally and on the Young Nats social media pages.

Unfortunately, after my personal details including phone number, postal address and email address were published on an article on The Standard, I receive a significant amount of hatred-filled vitriol directly at me personally via txt message, phone calls, emails and messages sent to my personal Facebook and Twitter accounts.

As a result of these communications, the Young Nats have pulled the site from thehttp://howkiwiareyou.nz domain, and we have no plans to re-launch it.

ENDS

It’s a pity Ben has said that the site was pulled because of hatred-filled vitriol directed at him because Prentice published his phone number and email address. That may encourage more dirty attacks.

I presume that Prentice intended to encourage personal attacks like that. He certainly didn’t have any problem with this comment encouraging attacks:

Atiawa

I just sent him a text letting him know what a shit head he is. Can’t see much harm in anyone else telling him the same.

Prentice was closely monitoring comments, heavily edited some and claims to have thrown a quarter of the thread comments in spam, so he must have decided this mob motivator passed his standards.

And in response to Ben’s comment Prentice then posted my phone number and home address. It’s easily obtainable but the obvious intent is to encourage more harassment and abuse. That exposes women and children to risks more than me.

Prentice posted:

In short – you acted like a fool. Take some personal responsibility for it and learn from it.

He has a habit of describing himself, but I doubt he will learn from it.

Most Standard regulars have kept away from this thread, showing good sense. But one Labour Party stalwart joined the jeering

Anne

Oh boo hoo, hoo, hoo. My heart bleeds for you.

Serves you right. Shows what a bunch of mentally challenged, inconsequential, puerile minded itsy bitsy twats you all are. May your days be awesomely fruitful and enlightening.😀

That speaks for itself.

And is a very poor reflection on The Standard, on Labour by association and on political discourse in general. No wonder a million people don’t vote. And perhaps no wonder Labour is resorting to deliberately divisive politics – dirty politics – to try and rescue themselves from a dire situation.

A sane response to a manic attack

Someone called ‘Izzy’ has had their comment passed by tight moderation on the Lynn Prentice post that launched an over the top attack – Ben Guerin: a dirty politics fuckwit  -on one of the people involved in the Kiwi-O-KMeter website.

It covers things reasonably an well.

Izzy

I can’t stand the Nats, but I really don’t think this is dirty politics.

It’s a fairly obvious parody of Twyford’s foreign ownership work, clearly registered to Guerin, who makes his place of employment abundantly clear on LinkedIn and various other places online, and talked openly about making the site. One of the main things about ‘dirty politics’ was that those involved went to great lengths to hide their identities and their involvement, e.g. Jason Ede multiple email identities.

As for use of the Labour logo – possibly a poor choice, but it didn’t take much looking at the site to realise it wasn’t actually a Labour Party site, and it’s not exactly the first time a political party logo has been used to parody that party.

In comments Prentice said “And yet it has a logo that has to be in copyright eh?”

‘Whatevanext?’ said “and if some person pulled similar stunt using National’s logo? would there be uproar? Paddy and his gang would have a field day! or just a visit from lots of policeman for several hours while you are out?”

‘NZjester': “I was just wondering if the said plonker has broken copyright law by the use of the Labour Party logo in his attempt at a non parody political hatchet job?”

Misuse of party logos doesn’t usually seem to be a problem at The Standard as the link (provided by Izzy ) to a post by the infamous ‘Eddie’ shows – Not quite beyond parody

And there were more. Plus links from Standard author and lawyer Greg Presland – Or this one? – to a spoof video that uses a National logo, so it can’t be a big deal if it’s against the other side.

I think it was poor judgement by Guerin to do this when he is an employee of the Parliamentary Service – while he has every right to be involved in political activities in his spare time, the unfortunate reality for PS employees is that it’s pretty risky to do so in any public way, because of perception issues like this. He’ll presumably learn from this mistake, which is an easy one for young activists to make when they start working for MPs.

I agree that it was at least questionable judgement that risked backlashing against National. He might have been lucky Prentice overplayed his hand so much and became to focus.

I think it’s disappointing that you saw fit to publish his contact information, which apparently commentators here have now used to send him abusive messages.

He said something about your team that you didn’t like, which pissed you off, and that’s chill. You don’t have to like it, you don’t have to like his politics, you’re allowed to question whether the site was made in a work capacity or done independently (which he has answered). But he doesn’t deserve the level of vitriol in this post, and he doesn’t deserve texts and emails telling him he’s a piece of shit. Being a Nat doesn’t make him immune to being hurt by this kind of thing. Be kind.

Disclaimer: In the interests of transparency, I know Guerin through Wellington youth political circles – he’s friends with some of my friends so I’ve met him a few times and follow him on social media.

Prentice plus a few others piled in more vitriol. They only think it’s dirty if it’s done to them, not by them. But dirty looks dirty to most people.

Prentice: “there are very few of us who act like such a complete scumbag”

Lynn Prentice continues to do more damage to Labour than anyone else online as his behaviour and hos Standard blog are inextricably linked, despite his attempts to distance himself. Widespread perceptions matter.

Yesterday he demonstrated how, acting like a dirty politics hypocrite and “a complete scumbag”.

In January Prentice responded to a comment by ‘Juana’ – Cameron Slater’s wife in the post Where is Cameron Slater?

I think your guy is a irresponsible arsehole who brings the rest of the blogging communities into disrepute. I intensely dislike being tarred with the same label as him because there are very few of us who act like such a complete scumbag. Perhaps you should consider that before trying to smear me.

Prentice has proven again that he is ” few of us who act like such a complete scumbag”. If Prentice doesn’t like being tarred with the same label as Slater then he shouldn’t act like a scumbag himself.

Yesterday Prentice was pissed off with a website set up to mock the Labour attacks on Chines property buyers. He posted about it – Ben Guerin: a dirty politics fuckwit. Fair enough rating about something he felt strongly about, but Prentice went further than that.

Prentice has spoken strongly against outing people online, and especially strongly against revealing personal details that enable people to launch personal attacks off the Internet.

For example in the same January post (where Prentice posted Slater’s home address):

As for publishing his home address on the Internet… wtf?

Cameron Slater has never had any compunction about doing that. He has published my address and phone numbers (unlawfully used from the DNS records), John Mintos, and numerous others.

Prentice obviously has no compunction about doing things like that either. Like a scumbag.

And like a coward he has abused and banned people who have confronted him – he likes to dish it out in dirty dollops but doesn’t like being on the receiving end of far more gentle criticism. The thread is full of heavy handed warnings and bans to shut down criticism.

Despite criticising Slater for doing similar Prentice published Guerin’s phone number and email address (and they are still visible).

This had what I presume was the intended effect – one comment that hasn’t been censored or criticised:

Atiawa

I just sent him a text letting him know what a shit head he is. Can’t see much harm in anyone else telling him the same.

Not just enabling abuse, encouraging it.

On yesterdays post here Not amused about Kiwi-O-Meter:

TheContrarian

I text the guy from the number Lynn published. Seems the good people at The Standard have been sending him some fairly abusive texts.

Charming

On Daily Review at The Standard there was some guarded criticism of Prentice:

infused2.1.1

You act like a pissed off old man who just needs to ‘chill the fuck out’.

Nope. Just making a point about dirty politics.

If I have to bounce some dumb kid up and down to make that political point, then that is collateral damage.

I realise you probably don’t have any principles worth a damn.

But that is why I’m a “pissed off old man ” who doesn’t find mixing taxpayer paid political operatives anonymously with dirty politics “funny”. Hopefully this fool doesn’t think so either now as well.

If Slater does it Prentice calls him a scumbag and “a irresponsible arsehole who brings the rest of the blogging communities into disrepute”.

But Prentice does it and defends it as just “collateral damage” to make a political point.

The point Prentice was making was “Dirty Politics”.

FFS: Could someone inform the pathetic dickhead that Dirty Politics was so last year. That he shouldn’t reuse his old last years condoms because it is very very unhygienic. He should especially not leave his fingerprints all over the results of his pulling. Or even better still – just don’t play those stupid games.

Dirty politics was very yesterday at The Standard. There’s no point in telling Prentice not to play stupid scumbag games, he only sees things like that when someone else does it.

“There are very few of us who act like such a complete scumbag” – like Prentice in his own words.

And there are others with responsibilities at The Standard who are tacit supporters and enablers of lprent’s dirty hypocrisy.

Prentice’s long term and ongoing scumbag behaviour at The Standard is far more damaging to Labour than a temporary joke website.

Not amused about Kiwi-O-Meter

I think I first saw a link to Kiwi-O-Meter at in Rutherford on Labour’s surname policy at Kiwiblog:

Finally, if you want to work for yourself if you’re Kiwi enough to buy a house under Labour, try out this new Kiwi-O-Meter. Well done to the Young Nats for this humourous response to Labour’s dog whistles.

I thought it was quite funny. But someone else was not amused.

Ben Guerin: a dirty politics fuckwit

That is curious, suddenly a website pops up “how kiwi are you”. Full of slurs against Chinese. WTF!

It has a Labour logo? But that is linked to the YoungNats.org.nz (see below).

Oh. It appears we have some young fool trying to make a name for themselves. Lets dig out who.

So lprent outed someone who was already fairly well identified. He usually frowns severely on outing at The Standard but he often has different rules and standards for himself.

Well apparently he works doing MP support at parliamentary services. Working for some unknown National list MP “Brent Hudson”. Perhaps he thinks he is Jason Ede’s replacement.

But I’d never take tech advice from him… Yeah, I can just see how this “supports” the MP who employs him.

FFS: Could someone inform the pathetic dickhead that Dirty Politics was so last year. That he shouldn’t reuse his old last years condoms because it is very very unhygienic. He should especially not leave his fingerprints all over the results of his pulling. Or even better still – just don’t play those stupid games. Especially when being employed by the taxpayer while working for a MP. They don’t add anything to the political debate.

Also that he is a complete fuckwit and so are his National party employers

Not a happy chappy by the sound of that. I think he had been annoyed at Labour’s Chinese shouting and found someone to last out at. But it didn’t end there. His lack of humour continued through the thread.

SHG3

Amazing how even though the Young Nats’ Ben Guerin has been commenting online about what it was like to whip the site up on a Sunday afternoon, he was unable to hide the fact that identity behind the site is someone named “Ben Guerin”. Thanks for your Internet detective work there Captain Sysop.

  • So you approve of a parliamentary employee employed by a National MP doing this kind of trash?

    Surely that wasn’t what you have been saying for years about the imaginary Labour party staffers who don’t write here….

    You really are a hypocritical idiot.

    • SHG3.1.1

      So you approve of a parliamentary employee employed by a National MP doing this kind of trash?

      100%, because it’s nice to see that at least one side of NZ’s political spectrum knows how the Internet works.

      • lprent3.1.1.1

        And that says all we need to know about your sense of ethics.

        Rather than leaving it there, perhaps you should explain why you think this is a good idea for our local politics or anything else with some examples of what you think is permissible with people controlling data.

        Define the edges of what you think is permissible..

        Publishing other peoples posts under your own name – wait that’s been done – Cameron Slater..

        Coming to think of it – is there anything that Cameron Slater has done which you think would be over the edge?

        • SHG3.1.1.1.1

          It’s funny, and it makes Labour look stupid. Therefore it’s a good idea.

          [lprent: Ok now you are just trolling my post. You can justify anything with “but I found it funny”. Including rape, serial murders, medical misadventure, …

          Banned permanently. I’m not really interested in hosting psychopaths on this site. ]

Standard authors often tend to react badly to being shown up on their own posts.

Expect UpandComer to get get a ban hammering as well.

UpandComer11

Hold on,

What’s more dirty, some young talented guy throwing up an obviously humorous satirical website on an issue of the day that I ‘presume’ amounts to an exercise of free-speech that he’s publicised to be the same.

Or publishing on the internet his photo, his address, apparently his phone number, his post code… ? There are a number of adjectives one could use in relation to that. And for what purpose? What do you want to achieve by marking a big ‘X’ on where this young guy can be found?

What’s more dirty? This is actually hilarious. Carry on.

What’s more dirty Lynn?

UPDATE: it’s really got up his nose.

7:00pm…

Just a wee warning. Because of the amount of diversion trolling going on on my post (some people like to live dangerously), I’ve put a full moderation on this post.

I’m letting through any half way reasonable comment and mostly answering them. But it’d inadvisable for the usual trolls to try diversion trolling. I’m really not in the mood for it, but I am finding it hilarious to do permanent bans for the fools who do it.

I will pop this comment at the top of the list by putting a earlier time.

And someone who usually gets away with poking at him misjudged zero humour, zero tolerance:

TheContrarian

I thought political satire was a good thing.

Take a deep breath Prentice. It is a joke site, kind of like ImperetorFish and his Martyn Bradbury Real Estate. Kinda of like The Civilian. Pretty sure you are taking this Waaaaaaaay to seriously.

[lprent: So I don’t think Dirty politics is funny. And so far no-one has managed to explain why they think it or this was funny. Like Nicky Hager, I view this particular kind of political crap by taxpayer funded political party staffers to be quite unfunny. Doesn’t matter if it is Jason Ede or this idiot. I don’t tolerate it here because I really don’t want my taxes funding National being spent on this kind of stupdity.

But hey, lets give a concrete example. I warned in comments that I wasn’t that interested in this particular line. So I think this is funny.

Banned until the next amnesty for diversion trolling.

Laughing laughing…. Oh yeah that is FUNNY! I can see you rolling in it from here. Funny looks different to different people eh? ]

Presland on ‘Digital Harm Bill’ and ‘Dirty Politics’

At The Standard Greg Presland tries to link the passing of the Digital Harm Bill with Dirty Politics in The Cyber bullying law and Dirty Politics.

I saw this graphic last night online.  It is one of those perfect Crosby Textor focus group graphics that you cannot fail but to admire.

National cyber bullying graphicGet that?  If confronted about Dirty Politics National can now say it is doing something.

Get that? It looks like a long bow to me.

This particular bill is a PR smokescreen to try and reduce the negative effect of Dirty Politics.  We should have seen this and we should have called it for what it is, instead of thinking the best of National’s intentions and trying to improve their bill.  Tim Watkin is right, the law is poorly drafted, will have a chilling effect on media reporting and cartoons, and is an example of cynical politics.

This bill has been in the making for far longer than left wing activists launched the ‘Dirty Politics’ campaign less than a year ago. I’m not sure how the Bill’s origins go but submissions were being made on it in February last year, for example: Harmful Digital Communications Bill submission.

I’ve just checked and it looks like it goes back years. The Harmful Digital Communications Bill 2013 was introduced to Parliament on 5 November 2013 and had older origins:

Background

This Bill implements the Government’s decisions on addressing harmful digital communications, which were largely based on the Law Commission’s 2012 Ministerial Briefing paper Harmful Digital Communications by:

  • creating a new civil enforcement regime to quickly and effectively deal with harmful digital communications;
  • creating new criminal offences to deal with the most serious harmful digital communications;
  • making some small amendments to existing legislation to clarify their application to digital communications and cover technological advance.

To try and slap a ‘Dirty Politics’ motive on this bill looks like, well, a bit like doing dirty politics.

And Presland heaps on the irony.

The left’s desire to engage rationally in the debate about the bill and try to make the bill somehow better is understandable but they should have realised that this was all a PR job and should have opposed it as a threat to the freedom of speech.

Some of the efforts to ‘engage rationally in the debate’ on the Standard thread.

lprent:

 Just a case of Judith Collins masturbating her ego up as she produced a stupid law for publicity reasons (like the rather useless “crusher” law), and then fools in parliament putting in a law that will be used way way outside of the purposes that they recorded in Hansard. I suspect that the instances of its use for the purposes stated in the record will be minimal simply because it will be too hard legally.

maui:

Isn’t the poster meant to say:

“Bully the Government or any of our MPs online and you could face two years in prison.”

Emelia Lovett:

They got rid of John Campbell, now we losing our right to free speech, they already bully people to death, next the pricks will be popping people off!

Our government has so much class!

Judith, John, they come from what you call ‘proper breeding’.

Sable:

If you look any Fascist state this is pretty much the same process they utilize. Legalize spying on people, undermine journalist standards and gag any who step out of line and then take away freedom of speech. Lets see what comes next……

I think there’s valid concerns about how the Bill may be used in practice but playing the Dirty and paranoid cards is hardly a showcase of ‘the left’s desire to engage rationally in the debate’.

How responsible is the Government for ‘safe’ houses?

Cold damp houses and deaths of people, particularly infants, have caused a lot of consternation. Some go as far as directly blaming the Government for deaths like this.

How responsible is the Government? They can’t be blamed for every death from any cause.

A guest post at The Standard looks at The Responsibilities of Government.

The death of Emma-Lita Bourne is not just a personal tragedy for the family: it is an event that should make New Zealand angry with the powerful people in our society who control the purse strings. They are responsible for condemning thousands of children to life-threatening conditions. And they are doing it in our name.

The reliable public health evidence is clear: poor housing conditions cause premature mortality. Our policy makers know that; those who decide on where public money should be spent know that; and yet too many of us simply shrug, express our heartfelt sympathies, and leave it at that. Well, we should be angry and we should be insistent on speedy change.

Fair enough to debate how much more should be done and how much more should be spent on safer housing. Alongside safer roads, safer workplaces, better medical and hospital care etc etc.

Politicians of the last few decades have presided over a significant increase in the wealth of the nation. As a result we have a very comfortable middle class. But a nation that harps on about its vanguard role in socially progressive developments in legal frameworks and its egalitarian ethos has become very unbalanced in its distribution of this considerable wealth. Those at the poorer ends of society have in fact gone backwards. Result: children die in mouldy and uncarpeted houses owned by us.

Some of this is questionable. For example carpeted houses can be less safe for some people than un-carpeted houses as carpets can harbour allergenic material.

I haven’t seen anyone analyse the state of housing now compared to say fifty years ago, when insulation was rare. Housing must surely be better generally for most people than it was a hundred years ago.

But we need to look at things as they stand now, and how we can do better.

It is time to recall one of the socially progressive developments where we were leaders rather than followers. New Zealand played a major role in ensuring coverage of economic and social rights in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. This totemic document of the United Nations, designed as the blue-print for the rebuilding of societies destroyed by eugenic ideas that some people were of lesser worth, sets out in Article 25 that all people have the right to an adequate standard of living. It’s a right with a purpose: to allow people to provide for the health and well-being of themselves and their family.

It’s all very well saying “an adequate standard of living” is a right but perfect living conditions for everyone cannot be provided, even if it could be defined.

What about the right to let people choose their own standard of living? People can’t be forced to comply with certain living standards.

In fact, it isn’t just a matter of economic rights. It is actually a matter of the right to life.

That’s idealistic. We have certain rights to life but can’t have guarantees, except for the guarantee that we will all end up dying.

The state obligation is to take steps whenever it is aware that death is risked that can be avoided.

That is totally unrealistic. Should we ban anything that risks death? Ban mountaineering? Ban swimming and boating? Ban all sports and recreation? Ban all unsafe workplaces? Sitting in an office all day is supposed to have health risks.

It’s totally unrealistic to expect we can have 100% safe roads.

It’s also unrealistic to expect we can have 100% safe houses.

Even basics like coldness and dampness on houses have significant problems. My house is cold if i don’t heat it enough. It is damp and it gets mouldy if I don’t ventilate it enough.

So our officials cannot just stand by. Safeguarding the many children like Emma-Lita Bourne is not just in the nice to have basket: it’s in the need to have basket. Any avoidable and entirely preventable death is an absolute tragedy. But when it reveals a situation which we have promised will not be allowed, we should damn well be angry about it. So how should we respond? Well how about we insist on being true to our obligations and, given our proud record of being at the forefront of social progress, true to our values.

Kris Gledhill

Our officials haven’t been just standing by. They generally do as much as they can with as much budget as they can get.

Cold and damp houses haven’t just been created in the last few years. Improvements have been happening – insulation has increased significantly over the past decade.

It’s a very complex issue that can’t be quickly and simply solved. For example you can’t force people to heat and ventilate their homes.

We should be looking at what can be done to improve housing safety more. In a reasonable way.

One of the worst ways to encourage the Government and officials to address it better is to blame and shame them.

But that’s what’s happening. The post by Kris Gledhill means well, with some naivety, but some of the follow up comments are negative, unnecessary and counter-productive.

One Anonymous Bloke:

Arrest those responsible and extradite them to Holland to stand trial at The Hague. Send a message to the centre-right that for human rights abusers, there is nowhere to run and nowhere to hide.

There is no alternative: until they face personal consequences they will keep on killing children.

lprent:

Their plan this time appears to be to dump social housing on to charities with insufficient resources, and trust that they will leak into the market that way.

Thus causing the mass exodus of families into their cars and trailer parks to die because of the irresponsibility of ministers with no moral compass.

I don’t think that we need to send Nick Smith to the Hague. I’m pretty sure we could deal with him here. I don’t care if we have to pass laws to deal with such people ignoring their direct responsibilities retroactively

Prentice is suggesting retroactive responsibility – does that go back as far as the Clark Government? The Bolger Government?

The Government cannot be held responsible for every death, and it isn’t fair to blame the Government for individual deaths, as sad as those deaths are.

We have a problem – not a new problem but one with new political focus – and we need to look at how we can deal with it better.

But if we prosecute and imprison all MPs whenever anyone dies it’s hard to see how we will make any progress.

Abusing and blaming is one of the most ineffective ways of getting politicians to listen and to act.

The Government has a responsibility to do as much as it can, but that involves juggling priorities. Those who dump on them don’t have to worry about the realities and real difficulties on getting a reasonable balance.

But no matter what the Government does they cannot ensure everyone heats their house adequately, or ventilates their house adequately, or keeps their carpets and beds relatively free of allergens, or budgets effectively, or the many other things that can contribute to a family’s well-being.

Conspiracy #83, #84, #85

Colin Craig was lampooned by the left for not categorically ruling out conspiracy theories. But Craig’s dalliance with conspiracies was a shooting star compared to the galaxy of conspiracy claims from the left.

Labour’s election review leak revealed quite a few who must have been abducted by aliens. For example from this thread at The Standard, ironically called NZLP Review of Election 2014; the Good, the Bad and the Ugly.

The GCSB has copies of the full review report from the earliest drafts.

Yes yes very good point… out of ‘national security interest’ of course. A few strokes of the keys and delivered into Paddy’s inbox with a (Labour MP) @parliament.org.nz addy…. Silly young Gower would be none the wiser.

And:

That’s probably why the traitor leaked Labour’s review to 3 and Gower, to deflect attention away from not just the Nats drop in public support, but noticeably from John key’s drop in support, and the fact that people are not accepting his bullshit over physically harassing and bullying a waitress at her place of employ.

And:

I refuse to believe that someone within Labour would have leaked this report to Gower.

This leak is either a hacker or Labour has someone within its ranks who has been planted and leaks in the best interests of Labour’s opposition party’s, it seems implausible but at some stage someone has to start asking this question.

Then there’s the frequent claims there’s a major media conspiracy against Labour, like this today from Policy Parrot:

Its both appalling, sad and maddening at the same time to see what is essentially a huge fraud being perpetrated by the government against its legitimate critics, and the mainstream media’s/pundits inability/unwillingness to expose it for exactly what it is.

Too often the Key line is bought hook, line and sinker in order to avoid getting offside with the establishment, and in addition government schills (Henry, Plunkett, Hoskings, Smith) broadcast unbalanced anti-Labour propaganda from all the relevant media, and have it received as fact.

This isn’t to say that Labour needs to get its house in order, which it does, but the continual propaganda war to prevent a threat rising up, is approaching persecution. I kid? How many people that you might know casually outside of politics has expressed a pro-Labour value or statement to you recently?

This is a bit like Hitler in his bunker blaming the rest of the world’s propaganda.

And yesterday Lynn Prentice claimed that Key conspires with the IRD to excuse Cameron Slater from paying tax.

Not quite bankrupted yet. I hear that Cameron Slater managed to cough up $10k in assorted cash for court ordered costs to Matthew Blomfield. However that was just for the High Court appeal where Cameron lost his ability to shield his sources.

Of course that is just the first court costs.

Just before that he paid about $9.1k to Ben R’s account. It’d be really interesting to find out where he is getting his income from.

I am sure that the IRD would be as well if they haven’t been subverted by John Key and his mates.

[Shakes head]

lprent on Roy Morgan – “your usual shallow analysis”

In response to the latest Roy Morgan poll – see National 54% in May Roy Morgan poll – lprent looks like he has rushed into an analysis a bit carelessly.

[lprent: Don’t get your panties in a twist. It isn’t that interesting, Just looks like the usual outliers that RM’s small sample size throws out. This poll is unlikely… It is too big a jump and the explanations for it are pure trash.

Caution is warranted for a single poll with a big shift in support.

But Roy Morgan state “both landline and mobile telephone, with a NZ wide cross-section of 866 electors from May 4-17, 2015″ – that’s not a notably small sample size.

That was a 8.5% shift to National pulling support from every other party. It doesn’t seem likely.

Allowing for a margin of error of about 3.5% this could be an unlikely high but National got 52% in January, then 49%, 46.5%, 45.5% and now 54% so fluctuations over a wide range are normal.

The usual shit analysis at Roy Morgan as well. Talking about the budget last week when their polling period was May 4-17, 2015 and the budget wasn’t released until the 21st. Even the damn spin wouldn’t have been there for most of the polling period.

The headline states “Positive news in lead up to New Zealand Budget helps National”, and in his analysis  Gary Morgan, Executive Chairman, Roy Morgan Research, says: “National has enjoyed a strong increase in support in the lead up to last week’s New Zealand Budge”.

They are clearly referring to the lead up to the budget, which happened through the polling period.So the shit analysis is from lprent.

If it carries on through the next couple of polls I will get interested. But I’d expect a big adjustment down in the next poll.

Why expect a big adjustment down? Anything could happen in June – including a negative response to Labour’s poor budget response.

It is a pity that Roy Morgan are only releasing polls every month rather than every two weeks now. It means that their small sample size has 4 weeks until it corrects.

They have been polling monthly since the election last September, far more often than anyone else. So they provide the most useful data for seeing trends and fluctuations.

Again “their small sample size” is inaccurate.

Still good for a spinner to get excited about. I’d expect to hear you sprout your usual shallow analysis over the next weeks eh?]

Yeah. Ironic.

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