Open Forum – Saturday

7 January 2017

Facebook: NZ politics/media+

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  1. Missy

     /  January 7, 2017

    There has been a shooting at an airport in Ft Lauderdale, and I see over at WO that SB appears to have decided already it is Islamic Terrorism, okay, she dresses up her speculation, it is obvious that she – and by extension WO – will go with the view it is Islamic Terrorism. Me? I just think it is another gun toting nutter in the US, shootings are not uncommon in the US, so it is reasonable to assume it has nothing to do with Terrorism.

    “…I actually wondered whether or not to even cover it. If this is Islamic terrorism yet again it has already become the new normal. Are you currently wondering if yet another mad Jehovah’s witness has gone crazy shooting people while yelling, ” Hello, I am making just a brief call to share an important message with you. Please note what it says here in the bible, what do you think about that? Does it sound good to you? ” Or are you thinking that this is most likely another Islamic terror attack and he is yelling ” Allah snack bar ” “

    • I saw news of the shooting and thought “here we go again’.

      Posted on it here:

      • Missy

         /  January 7, 2017

        My first thought was another mass shooting in the US, if it had happened in Europe instead I would have probably thought Terrorism, mostly because these kind of shootings are not common here, but in the US these types of shootings are more common.

        I do think her ‘sweepstake’ suggestion, and ‘bingo’ suggestion shows her bias, and I think that SB, and WO, will have egg on their face when the facts are known, one commenter has already suggested that USA Today are reporting the man’s name is Esteban Santiago – hardly Islamic.

    • I have just had a look at Spanish Bride/Juana’s post.

      Beginning with ” I actually wondered whether or not to even cover it” to launch into yet another provocation against Muslims.

      She has added that the suspect has been named, and suddenly the comments stopped, and no reaction from Juana to her prior launch into assumptions about the name of the suspect.

      • Missy

         /  January 7, 2017

        She won’t admit that she was wrong, her comment in the comments section shows that – it was apparently speculation and she was clear it wasn’t facts, funnily enough one of the criticisms they have of MSM.

        • Kitty Catkin

           /  January 7, 2017

          I can’t believe that the lame old snack bar wannabe-witticism is still being dragged out on its weary old feet, with its long white beard touching the ground. It’s old, it wasn’t that funny to begin with, it’s tired and should be dropped.

          How many more times will someone say it, under the illusion that it’s fresh and clever when it’s neither ?

  2. More from George Monbiot, a writer I am finding increasingly interesting and relevant –

    “When Thomas Hobbes claimed that in the state of nature, before authority arose to keep us in check, we were engaged in a war “of every man against every man”, he could not have been more wrong. We were social creatures from the start, mammalian bees, who depended entirely on each other. The hominins of east Africa could not have survived one night alone …

    What clear social change marks out our time from those that precede it? To me it’s obvious. This is the Age of Loneliness.”

    An excellent, thought provoking read.

    ” … structural changes have been accompanied by a life-denying ideology, which enforces and celebrates our social isolation. The war of every man against every man – competition and individualism, in other words – is the religion of our time, justified by a mythology of lone rangers, sole traders, self-starters, self-made men and women, going it alone. For the most social of creatures, who cannot prosper without love, there is no such thing as society, only heroic individualism. What counts is to win …”

    • Sigghhhhhh…… who argues for dog v dog PnZ? No one I know apart from a few zealots….

      Arguing for personal responsibility is entirely consistent with a dependence on society. It emphasises the need for all members of society to carry their weight and only rely on wider society when its truly necessary.

      NZ is a socialist country – has been since the 1930’s. We have vast society/tax payer funded social infrastructure in Health, Education and the social welfare safety net.

      My, and others objections, centre on going any further in to a State centred, inefficient, easily gamed system of tax payer funded, State provided benefits. Too many people don’t think, plan and strive to meet their own needs. And a drive to a more State centred existence just leads to more freeloading until the whole thing collapses.

      We are not mammalian bees – with a dominant Queen controlling all. We are autonomous units who choose whether to cooperate or not. i choose to be as independent as possible while supporting a level of infrastructure and wealth distribution to enable the truly less fortunate to have a reasonable level of quality of life. i don’t choose to support someone elses leisure activity

      • Dog v Dog is relative dave, in human terms, but it’s the essential thrust of neoliberalism.

        Since we each “rely on wider society” in order to become and remain able to carry our weight – via Health, Education, Economic Policies and sometimes Welfare – in a similar way that property values rely on the community for almost their entire increase [Georgism].

        Those who can’t “carry their weight” by neoliberal standards – competition, efficiency, productivity, amorality et al – are deemed “the truly less unfortunate” and given a “reasonable quality of life” … Usually something less than a minimum wage earner would recieve … When many an unfortunate has actually been actively created by the narrow focus of the system ….

        A whole ‘Trustocracy’ has developed to clean this up and tidy it away … The growing Neocharity Industry – modelled on corporations of course – much of it government funded. In other words, there goes the tax you thought Roger and Ruth had saved you!

        “It [television … the screen] strongly reinforces the income-happiness paradox: the fact that, as national incomes rise, happiness does not rise with them … Aspiration, which increases with income, ensures that the point of arrival, of sustained satisfaction, retreats before us.

        … while the income of company directors has risen by more than a fifth, wages for the workforce as a whole have fallen in real terms over the past year. The bosses earn – sorry, I mean take – 120 times more than the average full-time worker. (In 2000, it was 47 times)

        The top 1% own 48% of global wealth, but even they aren’t happy. A survey by Boston College of people with an average net worth of $78m found that they too were assailed by anxiety, dissatisfaction and loneliness. Many of them reported feeling financially insecure: to reach safe ground, they believed, they would need, on average, about 25% more money.”

        This isn’t describing “personal responsibility entirely consistent with a dependence on society” dave. It’s describing an archaic system of exploitation by some members of society, of other members of their own society … As always, the many exploit the few …

        Power and Wealth conquers Decency and Justice …

        While the metaphor of bees may not be perfect – the exact identity of the ‘Queen’ is questionable – she might be ‘need’ or ‘greed’ – the symbolism of a hive producing honey which is shared by all while simultaneously pollinating, fertilizing and enriching nature is a useful one IMHO …

        “Hobbes’s pre-social condition was a myth. But we are entering a post-social condition our ancestors would [never] have believed impossible. Our lives are becoming nasty, brutish and long.” – Monbiot.

        • Again sigghhh….. lots of words, no substance. And certainly NZ is not a Neo-Liberal country in anyway shape or form…. if it was we would all have health insurance and rely on it and not the State. We don’t.

          If people are stupid enough to endless chase material stuff to make them happy as opposed to a good partner and family time – more fool them…

          And the hive metaphor is a dreadful one. Most bees live hard lives and die after a short live exploited ruthlessly by the Queen to enable the Queen to propogate her genes… gee sounds like the Soviet union, so may it really is the metaphor you and George meant to use all a long!

          • Stop sighing dave and accept that Aotearoa NZ is part of an alliance of countries broadly ascribing to the neoliberal consensus of economic politics.

            Our semblance of remaining democracy is the only thing that has saved us from the disaster of universal health insurance and a privatised health system. Same with schools. The ‘Pirate’ Jolly Roger [and his band of Merry Robber Barons] was poised to privatise education just before the 1987 crash they themselves needlessly invoked …

            Seems beehives are somewhat more ‘democratic’ than you think …

            “When the queen dies, becomes lost or is removed, the bees must select a new queen from worker bee larvae. The queen candidate is hung vertically on the surface of the comb and provided large quantities of food. Eventually the queen emerges and, after a few days, leaves the hive to mate … Mating takes place high in the air, with several drones who have recognized a queen … The worker bees of her colony then attend to her needs and feed her royal jelly. When she can no longer produce eggs, she is replaced by a new queen.”


            • Yawwwnnnnnnnn…. its a conspiracy!!!!! Quick pass the tinfoil I need to make a Parti Hat ; )

            • My turn to ‘Siggghhhh’ dave … not even a reasoned argument …?

              I didn’t say they consciously caused the crash. The ‘free market’ system they zealously believe in and indecently profit from has the ’cause’ built into it, like planned obsolescence.

              They know the crash will happen, yet astoundingly leave it to vague ‘market forces’ to decide when, and yet more astoundingly attempt to do nothing about it. Wilful ignorance or worse is far worse than a conspiracy! [Worse would be to have convinced most of humanity that the market is a ‘jungle creature’ independent of humanity]

              Hell, if they wanted to conspire, they could ‘conspire’ to prevent crashes …

              Instead they [attempt to] name, blame and shame as “socialist” and communist anyone who wants to simply stabilize economics for the good of all humanity. Economics which is, after all, nothing but human enterprise and exchange between humans. It is nothing but humanity!

              It is we ‘others’ who need Bullshit Screen … + 2017 factor …

            • Blazer

               /  January 8, 2017

              Hey Dave,I say …Dave..its not a conspiracy…the drone bankers are very real….parasites on society.

        • Kitty Catkin

           /  January 7, 2017

          Before television, people had radio and magazines to tell them that life would be wonderful if they had this, that and the other…

          • Gezza

             /  January 7, 2017

            Hmm. I’m not seeing a lot of scope for finding common ground there. When the revolution comes it could get pretty messy.

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  January 8, 2017

              Radio and magazine ads were telling people that without products x, y and z, their lives were drab and dull. Not as blatantly as that, of course, but you know what I mean. I am lucky enough to have some old magazines, and they are real little time capsules.

  3. Zedd

     /  January 7, 2017

    I heard an interview on Al Jazeera; Drump being compared to another extremist, self-obsessed/absorbed political leader, who always walks around clapping, to get the crowd to join in; clapping for HIM.
    btw; the other one mentioned was.. wait for it: North Korea’s Kim Jong Un !! 😀

  4. Gezza

     /  January 7, 2017

    Chust a leedle “Bourgeois Blues” from my man Ry Cooder, for those from the centre, the right, the left, the lower/middle/&upper middle, the lower/middle&upper upper, and the up themselves, and especially for those in the lower who deserve to be up bit more than they are now.

  5. patupaiarehe

     /  January 8, 2017

    I’m up late, & bored. A tad unimpressed about a few things, TBH, one of which is myself. But such is life. If you don’t like it, end it. (I was kidding, please don’t!)
    So anyway, I went to the shop earlier to buy some smokes (the ‘regulars’ here will know that smoking is a ‘guilty pleasure’ for me, rather than a habit anymore). $28.00 for twenty cigarettes! WTF?!
    Apparently this happened on Jan 1st. The government allege that it is supposed to help people quit. Obviously it isn’t working on me. But why would it? I can afford to smoke, the only difference that the tax hikes have made to me, is that I now buy the better brands (when ‘cheap smokes’ cost $23 a pack, what’s another five bucks?)
    My heart goes out to folk who earn less than I, and still consider themselves addicted.
    At $23 a pack, a beneficiary with a pack a day habit, is giving half of his meagre ‘living allowance’ straight back to the govt in tax.
    This daylight robbery is the work of the Maori Party. Individuals who claim to represent the interests of a certain ethnic group, who (according to statisticians) not only earn less than average, but also smoke more…
    But I guess that it doesn’t really affect any Maori person, who earns a six figure salary…

    • Gezza

       /  January 8, 2017

      Sorry been watching Russian fails on EweChewb. Good to have a whinge sometimes, thought I’d just pop in & see if any sad bastards had come here after the pub.

      • patupaiarehe

         /  January 8, 2017

        Heres a suggestion for you G… Go shave your arse 😀

        • Gezza

           /  January 8, 2017

          Can’t just at the moment e hoa. I’ve lost my sense of proportion. I’ve looked everywhere.

          Wait 🤔 ❗️Might have left it in the kitchen when I was making coffee earlier. brb. 😀

          • patupaiarehe

             /  January 8, 2017

            Your arse, or your razor? 😉

            • Gezza

               /  January 8, 2017

              My SoP, laddie. S’alright. Got it now. Was by the toaster. Haven’t actually used it today but I like to make sure I’ve got it handy when I visit this place. 👍

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  January 8, 2017

              Now you’ve found it, tell patu it’s Sunday already.

            • patupaiarehe

               /  January 8, 2017

              SoP? Sense of Perspective I’m guessing? And yes Alan, I am well aware of what day it is. Which means I have to work tomorrow… 😦

    • Blazer

       /  January 8, 2017

      Interested I what makes a better…Brand?

      • patupaiarehe

         /  January 8, 2017

        You mean ‘in’ Blazer. Interestingly enough, ‘Rothmans Blue’ can be bought in a ‘softpack’ ($22.50), whereas ‘Rothmans Blue King Size’ comes in a cardboard pack ($27). My friend buys the cheap ones (because he smokes everyday), and I buy the expensive ones (because I don’t). We did a little experiment last night, and lit up at the same time. I still had 1/3 of a ciggy left when he was down to the filter, and mine burned more evenly, with thicker smoke.

    • @ patupaiarehe – I don’t think Aotearoa NZ’s cigarette smoking policies are entirely the work of the Maori Party at all, not by a long-shot, as this sfc history of tobacco control in NZ outlines –

      Nonetheless, current tobacco control measures are a giant and glaring anomally in the neoliberal agenda of “freedom and personal responsibility” … Laughable … Ideologically they nearly negate all the good work done by Milton, Roger and Ruth …

      Shit … Where would we be if we COLLECTIVELY couldn’t do anything that was bad for ourselves collectively?

      No Milton … No Roger … No Ruth …

  6. patupaiarehe

     /  January 8, 2017