Open Forum – Thursday

9 February 2017

Facebook: NZ politics/media+

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128 Comments

  1. Conspiratoor

     /  February 9, 2017

    Rain!!! I never thought a toilet flush would sound so sweet

    • Gezza

       /  February 9, 2017

      👍 The rain dances all finally did their work.
      Ab Fab morning in North Welly. Bit nippy just @ the mo.

      • Conspiratoor

         /  February 9, 2017

        G, just musing on the sequel. Is it mathematically possible to produce an S8 that is so deceptively simple and yet fiendishly cunning, that it could deliver up a double digit score and propel c into a commanding lead?

        • Gezza

           /  February 9, 2017

          It’s theoretically possible – but one doesn’t get away with it very often, and even then only if it’s a random, notified, 24-hour Scoring Day, which today is not. That was yesterday, and while pulling a Polish Exit last night prevented an L6 points loss, it’s too late now to get another point or two.

          • Conspiratoor

             /  February 9, 2017

            Now I’m sulking. When is the next high points day

          • Gezza

             /  February 9, 2017

            Sorry, non-caffeinated brain operating here:
            * … while pulling a CZECH exit last night …. etc.

            • Gezza

               /  February 9, 2017

              @ c. At least a week from yesterday. If I do them too often I’ll get shat on from a great height by many posters for banging on about the Scoreboard & pissing them off. Look, c, I’ve been feeling guilty about deducting four points from your score for making PG go wonky at you & making me lose point too. It should really only have been one point for an L3.

              I’ve reinstated 3 points, so you’re now 5 on the Scoreboard, & I’m completing the scoring today due to needing some sleep last night, so you never know, you might pick up another one though no promises, obviously. How’s that with you?

            • Gezza

               /  February 9, 2017

              Allah be praised, actually, after rechecking events for that day, you’re now 6 on the board c, for an S11 – Gracious or fulsome apology.

            • Conspiratoor

               /  February 9, 2017

              You’re a good man G. Last night’s abrupt exit was beyond my control. Rain fell from the sky for the first time this year, so naturally I felt compelled to go outside and stand in it. I’m guessing 73mm overnight but his lordship will no doubt confirm when he drags himself out of the scratcher. Cheers,c

            • Conspiratoor

               /  February 9, 2017

              6 on the board. Does that mean I’m eye to eye with parti? To be honest that doesn’t sit too well. Still it’s better than being on the rung below and having to look up his gluteus maximus

            • Gezza

               /  February 9, 2017

              Hang on …

            • Gezza

               /  February 9, 2017

              Nope – sorry, PZ’s at 7 – best for you to just avert your eyes I think.

              You ARE, however, ahead of the following, although these scores are provisional as I haven’t completed yesterday’s points awards & deductions yet, owing to *someone* constantly interrupting me with abject pleadings.

              6 Conspiratoor
              5 Jeeves
              5 Pickled Possum
              5 Zedd
              2 Lurcher

            • Conspiratoor

               /  February 9, 2017

              I see I’m in exalted company G [deleted – references to magic mushrooms in this context is inappropriate. Although I do concede quite humorous]

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  February 9, 2017

              Not a FULSOME apology, Gezza-unless you mean it to be one 😀 Nobody (except Donald Trump) would want fulsome thanks or apologies.

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  February 9, 2017

              Con….why does the sound of a flushing loo sound so good ? What have you been doing since the drought began ?

  2. Gezza

     /  February 9, 2017

    Helpful Hint Of The Day
    If you tighten the screw on the G string tuning key of a cheap but great sounding, bassy toned 3/4 size classical guitar – to see if you can stop the blimmin new G string stretching out of tune & going flat overnight when by now it’s been on played enough to stop that behaviour – and you have a clip-on guitar tuner on the headstock near the key – take the tuner off first. Otherwise it may spring off & attack you.

    • Anonymous Coward

       /  February 9, 2017

      On a similar note: When putting new strings on a guitar hold it away from your face when you tighten the B & E strings up to pitch. (learnt that the painful way).

      • Kitty Catkin

         /  February 9, 2017

        On a sort of similar note-when the tape measure is pulled out a long way, be careful when you press the wossname that makes it go back in. A metal tape measure racing across the hand is also painful-as is being hit on the thumb when it whizzes back in too fast.

        • Kitty Catkin

           /  February 9, 2017

          The dog wants to say that he heard what I said today when the tape measure raced across my hand, side on.

  3. Alan Wilkinson

     /  February 9, 2017

    Steady glorious rain here at least since the last half of the night. Will dash out and check the rain gauge soon. No dog walk till it eases.

    New guests came in last night to the holiday house so they might have to party in the hot tub till the rain stops.

  4. duperez

     /  February 9, 2017

    About a particular news item (via China): “It means the Aussies aren’t buggers but they are still losers.” 😊

  5. duperez

     /  February 9, 2017

    Oh, and the calves are out there with weird looks on their faces. I’ve spoken to them quietly and slowly trying to explain what rain is. And told them to stay away from the cracks in the ground in case they get washed down. 🌧🌧🌧 😊

  6. Pickled Possum

     /  February 9, 2017

    Rain Rain oh Glorious Rain
    Never have I heard such a beautiful sound …
    Well never this summer. 😉
    The tomato cucumber kumi passion-fruit blue berry strawberry
    tamarillio banana apple grape peach etc plants and trees are just gulping it all up.

    Reading EPA I was disheartened to read that
    The Environmental Protection Authority has given Northland Regional Council
    permission to bring into the country …
    The arundo galling wasp, truly galling (could not resist that),
    and the arundo scale insect
    under the Hazardous Substances and New Organisms Act (1996)

    http://www.epa.govt.nz/search-databases/HSNO%20Application%20Register%20Documents/APP202887_APP202887_Staff_Assessment_Final_.pdf

    The wasp can produce 20-30 offspring. it lays its eggs in the tips of the plant,
    the larvae feeds on the tissue. then flies off to look for another plant
    The scale punctures plant and sucks out nutrients reducing plant

    The committee said “that neither would be likely to cause adverse effects in the NZ environment. and it was highly improbable that the 2 would form undesirable self sustaining populations.” Yea Right.

    Introduced plants animals and organisms into Nz have caused mayhem and havoc
    on our fragile bio-diversity, its like there is No border and the signs says
    Welcome to NZ … Destroy at will.

    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  February 9, 2017

      I’ll swap them for gorse and carrot weed, Possum.

      • Pickled Possum

         /  February 9, 2017

        Al The Rain has stopped oh no.
        Gorse is a good nursery environment for native trees and shrubs,
        which eventually grow through and suppress gorse.
        Ridding us of gorse, and allowing native forest regeneration.
        Gorse is a nitrogen fixer. Burning it will result in MORE gorse as I found out
        as a slash and burn youngster. Another imported hedge plant.
        Carrot weed I hate it the bees love it and I have heard it can be toxic to horses.
        When cut down mowed or sprayed it leaves a patch where no grass will grow.
        In the far North I have seen entire fields filled with it.

        Thanks Ozzie for sharing your invasive animals, insects,birds and plants with us.
        Grrrrrr. But we will take Rugby, League and Netball players. 🙂

    • Kitty Catkin

       /  February 9, 2017

      Gorse does have one redeeming feature-dried gorse around a treetrunk will stop possums climbing up the tree. It’s not worth having it just for that, I must say.

      The new wopses must not be like their cuzzies, they wouldn’t be let in.

    • PDB

       /  February 9, 2017

      PP: “Introduced plants animals and organisms into NZ have caused mayhem and havoc
      on our fragile bio-diversity, its like there is No border and the signs says
      Welcome to NZ … Destroy at will”.

      You are talking about the past, biological control nowadays is an important and well researched area.

      “Few realise it, but Northland is a battleground for a little-known and largely unseen war between a host of tiny insects and fungi and some of the region’s worst weeds. There have been many successfully introduced insect biocontrol agents in action. Two parasitic wasps now control armyworms and cutworms in maize, as well as tomato fruitworm in vegetables. The parasitic wasp, Thripobius javae, now keeps numbers of greenhouse thrips low where insecticide sprays are not used. This thrips is a serious pest in the avocado and citrus orchards. Wasps that kill Argentine stem weevil and clover root weevil in pasture are now established and the ladybird, Cleobora mellyi, which feeds on eucalypt and blackwood pests is now resident in Northland following its relocation from Marlborough.”

      http://www.nrc.govt.nz/Environment/Weed-and-pest-control/all-about-biological-control/Biological-control/

    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  February 9, 2017

      I read the document, Possum. It’s hard to see a problem given the extent of testing done here and world-wide. Why do you think there will be one?

  7. Alan Wilkinson

     /  February 9, 2017

    Just held an official measuring at the rain gauge. 45mm so a good healthy sip for the parched land and dried out plants but it won’t break the drought yet.

    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  February 9, 2017

      Thought it had stopped so took a damp dog walk. But no, still light but steady rain. Perfect really. I sympathise with duperez and his cracks in the ground. The horse feed shed moves so much when the clay dries out that I have two sets of holes for the latch lock – one for dry weather and one for wet. A friend has iron gates on huge stone pillars and is forever adjusting the hinges so they will close as the clay moves differently on each side.

      • Alan Wilkinson

         /  February 9, 2017

        Ok, that’s it I think. Rain officially stopped and final certified gauge reading is 48mm.

        • Kitty Catkin

           /  February 9, 2017

          Has anyone read The Thimble Summer where the drought suddenly ends and the heroine and her brother go outside and run around in it, getting soaked, from sheer joy that the rain has come at last ?

          • Alan Wilkinson

             /  February 9, 2017

            Don’t tell Conspiratoor – I suspect that was what he was up to last night but I don’t want to see evidence.

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  February 9, 2017

              I remember once in Wellington when we had had that ghastly humidity that is all but unbearable & that went on forever (or so it seemed) . Grey skies, that feeling that’s in the air before thunder, but nothing happened. I was just walking home to my flat when the skies opened. Next door’s children were there, and we danced and ran around like lunatics. Nothing has ever felt so lovely as that rain !

  8. Most interesting ‘news’ or current affairs for me this week is the announcement of a potential ‘local solutions’ approach to so-called “intergenerational problems” in regions like the Far North, East Coast and Rotorua Lakes District – the three areas of Aotearoa NZ with the highest Maori populations – perhaps best summed up by Peter Jackson’s editorial in our robust local ‘community’ newspaper, the Northland Age …

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/northland-age/news/article.cfm?c_id=1503402&objectid=11796021

    This ‘demarcation zone’ approach has been inspired by investigation into poverty in NZ by The McGuinness Institute, [yet] another non-partisan ‘think tank’ and a kind of anti-dote to the ‘non-partisan’ think tank New Zealand Initiative (formerly Business Roundtable) …

    The reason I’m putting so many words, titles and phrases in inverted commas is because the language of this subject is UTTERLY POLLUTED. It is tainted beyond recognition by 30+ years of blaming Maori, the poor, low-paid, under-employed and unemployed entirely for their own situation … The editorial is full of its foul smelling ‘slag’, the slurry of three decades of branding and rebranding … of language excavation, erosion and fracking … ‘demarcation zone’ … It has a nuance of ‘ring fencing’ to it … AREA 99, Decile Zero …

    Wendy McGuinness and cohorts have finally BEGUN, just begun to question and confront this ideology, with values like ‘focus on family not the individual’ and ‘focus on choice not freedom’ …

    Still the editorial is entitled ‘Sit down and shut up’ and the highlighted paragraph reads, “Tempting as it might be, there is little point in apportioning blame [on government] though. The job now is to construct a local process that really can make a difference, and to persuade the government to allow it to happen.”

    Oh well, these things happen, you know … get over it … forgive and forget … blah blah blah … just get on with the job … look to the future … Its like saying there’s absolutely no need for a Treaty Settlement process … We’re all one people now … blah blah blah …

    Anyhow, ‘going forward’ is important [I just wish the f*%k we could call it something else] “The focus now must be on establishing a structure that devolves responsibility to communities, that enables the coordination of services designed to improve the lives of those who need help and the communities in which they live …”

    This stuff must be an absolute REVELATION to the Ministry of Social Development!!!

    It will remain to be seen whether goverment does “allow it to happen” and what form the devolution takes if ‘they’ do … ? More remote experts anyone …? More ‘trustocracy’?

    I know what Righties are going to say and I agree wholeheartedly in advance! This is a call for people in those communities to put up their hands … Its a swords-to-ploughshares call to ‘arms’ … A ‘summons’ back to work on much more of your [our] own terms … an opportunity to create a place for people who don’t fit the neoliberal mold of over-compete, over-work, over-consume, over-borrow, over-spend … over …

    Many of the social groupings in these three districts of Aotearoa NZ will be marae-based hapu iwi and, IMHO, they must not be swamped or engulfed by the Pakeha notion of ‘community’, which is often little more than a word we frequently use in funding applications …

    http://www.mcguinnessinstitute.org/

    http://www.stats.govt.nz/browse_for_stats/people_and_communities/maori/census-snapshot-maori.aspx

    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  February 9, 2017

      Good editorial. I’ve got a lot of time for John Carter as I’ve mentioned a few times before. I hope he gets action. It’s long overdue. Turning destructive welfare into productive work up here is long, long overdue.

      • Yeah, Right … All those years as MP for Northland and none of this sort of stuff eventuated … Indeed, as ‘our’ MP he helped bring about the very situation he now ‘suddenly’ realises there’s a different way of approaching …

        Epiphanies are wonderful, aren’t they Alan …?

        The only ‘demarcation zone’ during his time as MP was the restriction on moving to live in certain parts of Northland, which must have affected people wanting to return home, perhaps especially Maori …?

        Now he’s in the position of effectively going up against Central Government to get action on something that’s been glaringly obvious to many people for decades … Part of what’s long overdue is a way of looking at these ‘problems’ with a modicum of human decency …

        Personally I reckon a bit of blame throwing might clear the air nicely as well …

        • Alan Wilkinson

           /  February 9, 2017

          The situation was brought about long before Carter was an MP or Minister. What exactly are you accusing him of being complicit in?

          • Oh Alan … The Bolger-Shipley government 1990 – 1999 wreaked havoc on the Northland economy – he sat through Ruthanasia – which the Key government 2008 – 2011 did nothing to even ameliorate, let alone improve … and while they did progress Treaty claims they also “tried it on” with the fiscal envelope …

            Consequently they lost the by-election precipitated by Carter’s leaving …

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  February 9, 2017

              B.s. PZ. No evidence the Bolger Shipley govt wreaked havoc on the NZ or Northland economy:

              http://cdn.tradingeconomics.com/charts/new-zealand-gdp-constant-prices.png?s=newzealangdpconpri&v=201701041217t&d1=19170101&d2=20171231

            • National took over the work of Rogering the nation from Labour after only two terms, 6 years … although by 1990 it might be said a condom had been applied by the 1987 stock market crash and Lange’s [correct] appraisal that the NZ public would not tolerate being Rogered too deeply e.g. privatising education and health …

            • @ Alan – ” No evidence the Bolger Shipley govt wreaked havoc on the NZ or Northland economy” …………. LOL …

              Your ‘thin blue line’ of GDP alone is pretty flimsy evidence they didn’t wreak havoc on the particular sector of the economy we are talking about here Alan … the demographic … the PEOPLE and FAMILIES …

              “Where Roger Douglas had deregulated the industrial, financial, fiscal and agricultural sectors of the New Zealand economy – [radically affecting Northland] – Ruth Richardson, under the auspices of a National (predominantly conservative) administration, was able to focus on social services and labour relations.

              Richardson and the then Minister of Social Welfare, Jenny Shipley, immediately reformed the Social Welfare programme in the “Mother of all Budgets” by reducing available unemployment, sickness and welfare benefits across the board [radically affecting Northland]”

              In 1991, the National government [had] enacted the Employment Contracts Act (ECA), which effectively demolished New Zealand’s post-war industrial relations framework, replacing collective bargaining and compulsory union membership in many sectors with the concept of the individual employment contract.”

              https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ruthanasia

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  February 9, 2017

              Ha, the NZ public turfed out Lange’s “cup of tea” in a landslide having re-elected Douglas’s reformers in a landslide the previous election. So much for that drivel.

              I know Richardson reformed the Labour laws that Labour couldn’t touch. The results are shown in the chart I linked – GDP took off on a sustained climb that mocks the stultification you worship prior to that.

              No evidence Northland was adversely impacted by any of that any more than anywhere else.

          • There are none so blind Alan …

            “Robertson said even with the newly-calculated data – [unemployment down nationally to 5.1%] – the statistics were not good for some areas … especially in the regions. Even on these figures Northland has an unemployment rate of 10 per cent [overall – higher for Maori and higher still for Maori youth]. We need a government that is an active partner in helping communities create decent and well-paid work.”

            For the first time, the data includes a measure of people who are “under-utilised” – not working as many hours as they would like, or who want a job but are not in a position to start looking for one.

            Including those workers and the number who are unemployed by traditional measures, the number of people who have less employment than they want is 342,000 or 12.7 per cent of the labour market.”

            http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/83185833/unemployment-drops-but-underutilisation-prevalent-data-shows

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  February 9, 2017

              None of that is relevant to any of your absurd and often offensive claims other than demonstrating that Carter has identified a real problem and is doing something about it.

            • Almost back where we started Alan, and you said it not me, “I hope he gets action. It’s long overdue.”

              Perhaps its long overdue because tHEy didn’t take any action?

              As always, its required a think tank with some pretty big names attached to it even to initiate the possibility of some action. A non-partisan think tank to rival NZ Initiative …

              So far, the only thing anybody’s actually done is publicize the Tackling PovertyNZ investigation and report, and the informal agreement between three mayors …

              Until I see some action, in my scepticism I’ll sing, “Meet the new Trough … Much the Same as the old Trough” …

              http://www.nzherald.co.nz/northern-advocate/news/article.cfm?c_id=1503450&objectid=11071546

            • Gezza

               /  February 9, 2017

              Slagging it off before it even starts – e.g. predicting just a new bunch of troughers – doesn’t seem appropriate to me – just whingeing. Good planning – involving funders & stakeholders & that especially includes Maori, agreed KPI’s (and that includes Maori) measurement & regular reporting & management are what’s needed. Those thing don’t need to be done in only a bureaucratic way. These areas where some earlier schemes funding Eg Marae directly fell over. Once a new approach kicks off It ain’t over till the fat lady sings: evaluation time – that’s when I’d look at whether a following dirge or a dtty is appropriate.

            • My scepticism may have got the better of me Gezza, but I’d call it mostly sounding words of warning and, with all due respect, frankly your approach lends credence to my doing so IMHO.

              You want to take the “most horrifically dysfunctional families” and individuals, people likely to be semi-literate at best, with substance abuse, authority issues and violence problems, intergenerational beneficiaries, and have them learn ‘Newspeak’, the neo-colonised language employed for 30+ years to advertorially sell us the very ‘deregulation’, ‘corporate change’ and ‘market society’ paradigm that got these people where they are today …

              KPIs, regular reporting and ‘management’, no doubt all done by outside experts, means this ‘devolution’ will put its foundations down in quicksand …

              It needs to be straightforward and unpretentious, targeted at the client’s comprehension level and their community – from whence the leadership must come – accessible, approachable and attractive TO THEM.

              On a more conspiratorial note, guess who else is talking “devolution”? Yep, Gareth Morgan and TOP! Coincidence …?

            • Gezza

               /  February 11, 2017

              I understand what you are saying, PZ, but you might be misunderstanding me. Firstly, things like planning – involving funders & stakeholders & especially Maori, agreed KPI’s, measurement & regular reporting & management towards identified goals are just terms for simple, sensible processes similar to those you would use to manage any ‘project’ including your own household annual budget – if you have one.

              It’s not a complex matter to educate people as to the meaning of those terms. Don’t under-rate their intelligence. Apart maybe from a hopelessly lost or drug-addled tiny few, Maori are simply not stupid. And those involved in the delivery of programmes can devise & apply or utilize their own language & cultural concepts to them, if they wish – educating their pakeha colleages or collaborators to those tikanga & kaupapa in the process. This can be a win-win, done properly.

              “It needs to be straightforward and unpretentious, targeted at the client’s comprehension level and their community – from whence the leadership must come – accessible, approachable and attractive TO THEM.”

              Absolutely e hoa. But those leaders must include people of their own who have or can acquire skills to manage the processes. That is the key, & I want to believe it’s possible.

            • From a work in progress Letter to the Editor –

              Devolution of social services must not be enmeshed in bureaucratic complexity, impossible expectations and red tape, be reliant on elitist ‘leaders’ or linked to half-witted, bottom-line ‘productivity and efficiency’ measures. When a person’s productivity and efficiency is -ve 10, a 5 point improvement to -ve 5 must be hailed a huge success and built upon.
              Extra expenditure will be recompensed through savings in health and education, less crime and community dis-ease: by positive outcomes like personal motivation, sense-of-belonging and community connections (not cellular ‘connectedness’) plus enlivened, confident cultural expression and sports-&-recreation participation.
              It might demonstrate itself in the arts, in local conservation initiatives – e.g. much needed Arundo Donax, Tobacco weed, Ginger and Privet control – in civic beautification and many more ‘projects’ – most of which will tangentally benefit tourism as well – plus of course in intangibles like hope for the future and quality of life.
              There may be just as many beneficiaries. They may even be getting paid slightly more as “incentivisation”. The long-term benefits many only show-up in future generations.
              Meantime, how do we stop ‘devolution’ becoming yet another political football?

            • Gezza

               /  February 11, 2017

              Personally I like that e hoa.

  9. Gezza

     /  February 9, 2017

    Every now and then a stupid man appears at my place, when I’m the only one here, & gets some *brilliant* DIY idea to fix some minor problem, which turns out to be particularly bad idea, makes the minor problem bigger, & takes more effort to put back to the status of a minor problem than the *fix* took ! This morning when he appeared it involved watered-down acrylic paint & carpet. But I don’t want to talk about it any more. 🙄

    • Anonymous Coward

       /  February 9, 2017

      So you tried to paint over a red wine stain in the carpet?

      • Gezza

         /  February 9, 2017

        No the idiot tried to do it where there’s a pink chemical stain. He’s gone now. I don’t want to talk about it. 😡

        • Gezza

           /  February 9, 2017

          He created an orange stain.

          • Alan Wilkinson

             /  February 9, 2017

            Trumpy would be proud of you.

          • Anonymous Coward

             /  February 9, 2017

            I had a guy paint my walls once, who thought it would be a good idea to mark the bits that needed filling with a vivid marker that then leached through 4 coats of paint. He had to get an expensive tin of spirit based sealer to stop it in it’s tracks..

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  February 9, 2017

              I thought that it would be a good idea to use red felt pen to mark a line on the bathroom cupboard…it wasn’t. I can’t remember how many coats of paint went on before I gave up and put a piece of beading across the line, which was across the middle, thank goodness.

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  February 9, 2017

              Gezza, Sod’s Law says that marks on carpets are usually in places where it looks strange and obvious to have a mat.

            • Anonymous Coward

               /  February 9, 2017

              Sod’s Law + Children + Animals = what looks like marks on the carpet are actually the clean spots.

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  February 9, 2017

              One of my Siamese had a delicate stomach and was sick quite often-never, of course, on the lino-so we had little mats in really odd places that were obviously covering something. I hate to think what the next owners thought-and said-when they looked underneath.

  10. Gezza

     /  February 9, 2017

    GEZZA’S COMPLETELY NEUTRAL SCOREBOARD
    Scores
    Points tally as at end of Scoring Day Wednesday 8 Feb 2016 (24 hours)

    11 Alan Wilkinson
    11 Missy
    11 PDB
    10 Anonymous Coward
    10 David
    10 Joe Bloggs
    9 dave1924
    9 Gezza
    7 Conspiratoor
    7 Kitty Catkin
    7 PartisanZ
    7 Patupaiarehe
    7 Pete Kane
    7 traveller
    5 duperez
    5 Jeeves
    5 Pickled Possum
    5 Zedd
    3 Lurcher1948

    Apologies for delay. All linked articles & videos had to be read/watched & assessed.
    Next scoring day likely to be Thursday(ish). Notification will be given on the day.

    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  February 9, 2017

      I protest !! I was lured into placing the IED under the scoreboard under false pretences.

      I will have to risk life and limb now to move it to the nearest “Speed Kills” sign instead. (Not having any speed cameras or traffic lights in this blessed part of the world.)

      • Gezza

         /  February 9, 2017

        We’ll just consider it a dud.

        • Alan Wilkinson

           /  February 9, 2017

          I’ll sell it to Lurch.

          • Gezza

             /  February 9, 2017

            Dad & ma’s 65th Wedding Anniversary today. We weren’t planning anything special, just for ma to visit him with cards, they don’t mean much to Dad in his state these days. But the Rest Home just rang ma to see if I was coming, because they’ve bought some bubbly for folk there & ordered a cake for the occasion – they don’t expect ma to pay for anything. So I’m going to pop up there separately for half an hour sround 2 pm. What a nice surprise, eh? You can see why we like the place for him.

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  February 9, 2017

              Good on them and you. I’d be a bit tearful if I were ma. Tough times.

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  February 9, 2017

              I was really touched when Hospice put a candle in front of the icon that I had brought in for my husband’s room. They did this when he died. It was a lovely gesture and would have pleased him immensely. Such a small thing, so much loving-kindness & respect behind it. It still makes me cry.

              How lovely some people are !

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  February 9, 2017

              Yes, little things at the right time can mean a lot, Kitty. I’m glad that happened for you.

  11. Alan Wilkinson

     /  February 9, 2017

    Dunne scores a direct hit on Labour and the Greens:

    http://www.kiwiblog.co.nz/2017/02/dunne_calls_out_labour_and_greens_on_trump.html

    • Gezza

       /  February 9, 2017

      Why did NZF escape the buckshot? Dunny ought to be a bit careful about a breech explosion.

      • Alan Wilkinson

         /  February 9, 2017

        You missed Dunne’s point. Peters has supported Trump, even wanted to emulate his success in representing the disaffected so that is not in any way in conflict with his anti-immigration positions. Labour and the Greens have been totally hypocritical on that, not NZF.

    • duperez

       /  February 9, 2017

      Is Kiwiblog his preferred method of distribution rather than, say, Andrea Vance?

      • Alan Wilkinson

         /  February 9, 2017

        Dunno, but it’s my preferred way of receiving it.

  12. Alan Wilkinson

     /  February 9, 2017

    UK Parliament votes for Brexit.

    • Gezza

       /  February 9, 2017

      Evidence?

        • Gezza

           /  February 9, 2017

          Thank you. Don’t try & get away with that sort of nonsense with me, making bold assertions backed up by no evidence whatsoever. UK Labour in disarray again it seems.

          • Kitty Catkin

             /  February 9, 2017

            Er….I thought that they had decided to leave the EU some time ago ???

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  February 9, 2017

              Yes, I thought they had voted on that bill a week or so ago but maybe it wasn’t the final one.

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  February 9, 2017

              I must admit to being tired of hearing the B-word !!!

            • Missy

               /  February 9, 2017

              The referendum was some time ago, but the is the bill to trigger article 50, and give the Government the authority to give notice to the EU and begin negotiations. A requirement from the court case.

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  February 9, 2017

              I know, I wasn’t serious. Heaven knows we all heard enough about it on the news night after night after night. Every detail repeated and replayed…

          • Alan Wilkinson

             /  February 9, 2017

            If you would put your monocle back in G, you would find it easier to find and read an English newspaper. I think this scoreboard lark has gone to your head – or you got more than your fair share of bubbly at the RH this afternoon.

            As a very junior assistant to Missy I didn’t want to steal too much of her thunder when she gets out of bed this morning.

            • Gezza

               /  February 9, 2017

              Yup. I’m waitin fer her update, should be a gripping read. She’s one to go for the jugular with Jer when she sees any blood in the water.

              You might have something about the bubbly. It was a very sweet & fruity jacob’s creek something or other, beginning with Mo. Got thirsty batting balloons around wid de ol’ folks waiting for Ross to turn up, so had two glasses. Then 3/4 of an hour removing & cursing 16 rusty screw-heads that kept burring taking some flower box brackets off the back fence for ma on the way home, & ended up having an hour’s kip when I got home cos a bit tipsy.

            • Missy

               /  February 9, 2017

              Thanks Alan, I will try to get a decent summary done, unfortunately I had a work function last night so had not time to contribute.

            • Missy

               /  February 9, 2017

              The pressure G, I am afraid I won’t live up to expectations.

              It will not. E until later this morning, I have an early meeting which will go to awhile, and I think it will be too long to do on the train.

          • Missy

             /  February 9, 2017

            Last week was the second reading, this week was the committee stages and third reading. All amendments put forward were defeated, it passed the third reading and now has to go to the Lords.

    • A very good thing. Dutch are next. Followed by ….. the Germans as they realise the Euro is becoming a millstone around their necks and no longer the captive market for their exports it once was. And the Francophone dream of dominating Europe, again comes to nowt….

      The UK will suffer some readjustment pain – but hopefully the Government doesn’t pander to special interests like the banking sector too much and the adjustment is made quickly. Then UK free enterprise can flourish again unstymied by what is best for French farmers, Spanish slackers and Greek freeloaders.. [yes those gross caricatures are design to inflame you reaction]

      • Kitty Catkin

         /  February 9, 2017

        Which is why they won’t; you’re trying too hard.

        • Your light is shining through….

          • Kitty Catkin

             /  February 9, 2017

            Yours isn’t.

            • Got a fur ball stuck in that Blaze??? my, my we get so grumpy… don’t we little kitty

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  February 10, 2017

              Blaze ?

              Wrong person-the different name should be a clue to this. Yes, I know that some people use two names, but I am not one of them.

      • Missy

         /  February 9, 2017

        It will be interesting to see what happens with the Dutch elections next month. There are more problems with Greece as well, the IMF has said their debt is unsustainable and that they won’t be willing to spend as much to bail them out, and the EU has to take more responsibility. This will put more pressure on Germany, and Merkel doesn’t need that with an election in 7 months.

        • Whoever is chancellor is going to have a very tough time explaining to German working folk why they should bail the Greeks out if things go bad …

          The EURO is unsustainable – the economic divergence between the strong economies [Germany and a few others] and the rest just gives a common currency and interest rater policy zero chance of success…..

          As for the Dutch – the rumblings of discontent have been going on for almost 20 years…. I hope they flick the leave switch as well…

          • Missy

             /  February 10, 2017

            Agree with you there Dave, though if the EU look to punish Britain for leaving others may bottle it and remain in – which is the aim of the EU.

            • The EU need to be very careful waving the big stick – it just confirms the stories of them being dictatorial..

          • Blazer

             /  February 12, 2017

            Dave I say Dave,the only ones being bailed out are the international bondholders.The ordinary Greek just gets another dose of austerity.The bondholders should wear the loss,but the GFC showed that the rich cannot condone losses.

            • Welcome back Flicker… so nice to see you.. as normal your incorrect but that’s ok because I expect that:

              “The results confirm that the exchange resulted in a vast
              transfer from private creditors to Greece, in the order of €100 billion in present value
              terms; corresponding to 50 per cent of 2012 GDP (this is net of the costs of
              recapitalising Greek banks to offset losses incurred through the restructuring). But we
              also show that the “haircuts” suffered by creditors on average were considerably lower
              than the 75 per cent widely reported in the financial press at the time of the debt
              exchange, namely, in the order of 59-65 per cent, depending on which methodology is
              applied. ”

              So bondholders took a fair old slap contrary to what you say. you want the source go google.

              And that is my one reply to you for the year of 2017 – just want to say I am so glad to see you back. Its always a great reminder of the mindless negative that runs around pretending to be intellectual and superior to see you mindless, negative, posy posting – you’re a national treasure…

            • Blazer

               /  February 12, 2017

              Dave,I say ..Dave…where is your link to confirm this …’haircut’?

  13. patupaiarehe

     /  February 9, 2017

    There is a really good movie on TV3 tonight, ‘Unstoppable’, starring Denzel Washington. One can catch the beginning on ‘3+1’, in around 15 minutes…

    • Gezza

       /  February 9, 2017

      Seen it. It’s the train one isn’t it patu?. 15 minutes from when, btw?

      • patupaiarehe

         /  February 9, 2017

        Yes G, 15 minutes from half an hour ago 😀

        • Gezza

           /  February 9, 2017

          Got it on. Al’s just been wasting my time here with nonsense. I was going to check out some other threads, but they can wait.

          • patupaiarehe

             /  February 9, 2017

            Par for the course G. 😀

            • Gezza

               /  February 9, 2017

              Wonder if Lurch is watching it. Cya later bro.

            • patupaiarehe

               /  February 9, 2017

              I’m picking he is, being a fan of trains. My two youngest were glued to the screen, and have both willingly gone to bed, appreciating that they were allowed to stay up so late, on a ‘school night’…

  14. PDB

     /  February 9, 2017

    Today in rock history Scott Halpin died………WHO you might ask?

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scot_Halpin

  15. patupaiarehe

     /  February 9, 2017

  16. patupaiarehe

     /  February 9, 2017

    Goodnight, cya when i cya… 🙂

  17. Missy

     /  February 10, 2017

    Hi All,

    Apologies for my lack of coverage of this weeks Westminster happenings, it has been a busy week with a number of evening functions to organise / run etc.

    A quick round up.

    As mentioned above the Article 50 Bill passed the third reading today and will go to the House of Lords. Of the large number of amendments put forward, only a minority were selected for voting on, part of this is that many were the same, or covered the same issues. All of the amendments were defeated, including the one for a second referendum and the one to guarantee EU citizen’s rights in the UK.

    The Liberal Democrats have said they will instruct their members in the Lords to put forward the amendment again for a vote in the House. There are many commentators on social media that have seen this move as the Lib Dems showing their contempt for British citizens, and only caring about Europeans. I find this interesting as the EU citizens whose rights they are trying to secure are unable to vote in UK elections anyway, so I am not sure why they think the average Joe on the street will see this as a vote winner for them – only the Pro EU elite in London seem to care about this issue, it isn’t one to die in the ditch over in my opinion. The Government have already said that they will guarantee the rights of the EU citizens in the UK on 23 June last year on the proviso the EU guarantee the rights of British citizens in the EU – some countries have indicated they are willing to do a deal on that prior to the Article 50 negotiations but Merkel vetoed that and said they would not discuss it until Article 50 has been triggered.

    A more interesting side story has been the dramas in Labour. Once again a three line whip was opposed, and once again a number of MPs refused to vote in favour of the bill. The imposition of the whip prompted Clive Lewis – shadow Business secretary – to resign from the front benches. This is seen as a blow to Corbyn as Clive Lewis has been a strong ally of Corbyn’s.

    Diane Abbott was another one that was being watched by the media & political junkies. Abbott is a strong Corbyn supporter – they have known each other since the 1970’s – however, at the vote for the second reading Diane Abbott mysteriously disappeared and did not vote. This non-appearance last week was explained away as Abbott having had a migraine, (which if correct I can understand her not sticking around – they can be debilitating), but many have questioned this, as apparently she got sick just before the vote. Diane Abbott is pro-Remain, her constituency voted Remain, and it is widely believed she wanted to vote against the Bill, but did not want to openly revolt against Corbyn – or put him in the position that he had to sack her. Last night she (allegedly) reluctantly voted for the Bill. And in a gossipy aside, it was reported in this morning’s papers that she told David Davis to F*** Off when he tried to give her a kiss in the Commons Bar last night.

    There has been speculation that Corbyn will resign as leader, but Corbyn denied this on Breakfast this morning saying that the party is united. There is also speculation another leadership challenge will be mounted against Corbyn.

    Below is the expected timetable for the Bill’s passage through the House of Lords.

    Feb 9 (today): Peers start to table amendments
    Feb 20-21: The Peers debate the Bill during its second reading, they are expected to vote through the legislation
    Feb 27: The first of two days in committee. There are expected to be numerous attempts to amend the Bill – I outlined at least one attempt above, from the Lib Dems.
    Mar 1: Second day of debates in committee. More amendments expected to be made and voted on.
    Mar 7: Report stage and third reading. If p0assed without amendments it will go for Royal Assent, if not it goes back to the Commons for MPs to agree to the changes.

    Posted: https://yournz.org/2017/02/10/article-50-bill-passes-third-reading/

  18. Gezza

     /  February 10, 2017

    “And in a gossipy aside, it was reported in this morning’s papers that she told David Davis to F*** Off when he tried to give her a kiss in the Commons Bar last night.”

    How very Trumpian 😀

    Thanks Missy. A thrilling read, as always (unlike *some Northland name-calling dog-walker’s* efforts yesterday). 👍🌹🕶

    • Missy

       /  February 10, 2017

      Pity today is not a scoring day G – surely double points for that? 😬

      • Gezza

         /  February 10, 2017

        Do you mean for my post or yours ? 😉

        • Missy

           /  February 10, 2017

          None of course! 😉

          • Missy

             /  February 10, 2017

            I mean mine not none! Stupid phone auto correct!

            • Gezza

               /  February 10, 2017

              I dunno. Starts getting a arbitrary then. At the moment the success of the system is the complete neutrality & inherent fairness of the scorekeeper, & the guaranteed objectivity brought to bear during the assessments. He even awards points for good arguments that he doesn’t agree with. There’s no other possible explanation for Sir Al’s current score.

              As there is objection to the idea of zeroing the scores for the start of each Scoring Day, new additions to the board are being started with an initial handicap score, based wherever possible on a reasoned assessment of last year’s performance, or on performance prior to today so far this year. After that, it’s up to them. Whingeing is not effective.

            • Missy

               /  February 10, 2017

              Ah Gezza s much as it may pain me to lose extra points for trying to suck up, I admire and respect your stance and your fairness. 😘

            • Gezza

               /  February 10, 2017

              * Slight correction – Sir Al’s current score is largely due to links to some very good articles, one of which – possibly unrealised by him – actually supported my position & so scored us both one point. 👍

    • Missy

       /  February 10, 2017

      Oh and thanks for the rose Gezza. ☺️