Open Forum – Wednesday

29 November 2017

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93 Comments

  1. Spoiled brats, the Opposition. The editorial in today’s Southland Times likens National to a petulant child. Quite rightly.

    • David

       /  November 29, 2017

      So some junior lefty journalist has a reminder of what an opposition should look like after 9 years of ineffectiveness, probably a Green supporter looking on in horror at what is unfolding and deflecting.

    • PDB

       /  November 29, 2017

      Trying to blame the new govts ineptness on the opposition is a bit sad really.

      • robertguyton

         /  November 29, 2017

        No junior. The editorial is spot on and reflects the growing awareness amongst the public of National’s petulance; the latest polls showed the direction their support is going – downwards. This ongoing brattiness is causing them great harm. You are fools to bray in their defence.

        • PDB

           /  November 29, 2017

          ‘Polls’, or a single Roy Morgan poll that only shows the 10% average bounce in support a new NZ govt receives didn’t occur for this govt which only got a 6% increase?

          No doubt in your protective bubble on the standard you are shielded from how poorly this new govt has begun. Business confidence only remains high because the new govt have backtracked on the majority of their election promises and haven’t actually changed anything yet that National was already doing.

  2. robertguyton

     /  November 29, 2017

    Turns out Key was lying /sarc
    “With days to go until voting in 2014, Key found himself accused by some of the world’s most high-profile and outspoken surveillance critics of secretly developing a mass surveillance system with the United States’ National Security Agency.

    It was high stakes for Key, also Minister of the GCSB, as he had previously promised the public he would resign as Prime Minister if there was ever mass surveillance of New Zealanders

    At the Kim Dotcom-organised “Moment of Truth” event, journalist Glenn Greenwald and Snowden claimed our Government Communications Security Bureau spy agency had developed the “Speargun” project to tap New Zealand’s internet cable and suck out masses of data.”
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11948852

    • PDB

       /  November 29, 2017

      A lot of straw clutching there from Dotcom’s journalistic mate. The ‘moment of truth’ was Dotcom being busted faking an email exchange between John Key and Hollywood execs.

      • robertguyton

         /  November 29, 2017

        You don’t believe Key lied, PDB?

      • Blazer

         /  November 29, 2017

        ‘Sir John Key’s story of how and why he canned a “mass surveillance” programme are at odds with official papers detailing development of the “Speargun” project.

        The issue blew up in the final days of the 2014 election with Key claiming the programme was long-dead and had been replaced by a benign cyber-security system called Cortex.

        Key always claimed the Speargun project to tap New Zealand’s internet cable was stopped in March 2013.

        But new documents show development of Speargun continued after the time he had said he ordered a halt – apparently because the scheme was “too broad”.

        Instead, they show Speargun wasn’t actually stopped until after Key was told in a secret briefing that details were likely to become public because they could be in the trove of secrets taken by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden.’..TS.

    • Corky.

       /  November 29, 2017

      Remember your own refrain, Robert. National are in opposition. No nobody cares. They are losers. Maybe some Lefties still do care ?

  3. David

     /  November 29, 2017

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11948925

    I almost feel sorry for the Greens having to sell all their principles for literally nothing, maybe they will get the crumb of Labour looking at adding a statutory day though.

    • David

       /  November 29, 2017

      But the Greens don’t agree.

      “Party leaders like me would basically get to say to individual MPs, ‘If you don’t do what I like then I’ll expel you from caucus and you’ll be kicked out of Parliament,'” says Greens co-leader Russel Norman.

      • robertguyton

         /  November 29, 2017

        Russel isn’t a Green now, David. Catch up, chap!

        • David

           /  November 29, 2017

          maybe they could get the kermadec sanctuary back as price for support or maybe bowing to Winstons fishing mates is the least scary option for this spineless grouping.

  4. robertguyton

     /  November 29, 2017

    Get it back? It never was.

  5. Conspiratoor

     /  November 29, 2017

    Bitcoin hit $10K overnight and an impoverished blogger goes from rags to riches.

    • Pickled Possum

       /  November 29, 2017

      @Con, Who?? What did I miss being in Paradise. This bitcoin saga is complex to me. Sounds like like the longer you have nothing, the more money it’s worth?

  6. duperez

     /  November 29, 2017

    In August 2016 Wellington man Losi Filipo was discharged without conviction for an October 2015 assault on four people.

    That discharge without conviction was overturned in October after an appeal by police, and in October 2016 he was to nine months’ supervision and has been ordered to attend alcohol counselling, and a course on living without violence.

    The initial publicity about the result of the appeal saw wide public discussion and condemnation of Filipo, Wellington and New Zealand Rugby and anyone who wrote a reference for him.

    It is probably reasonable to say there was a media storm. And hysteria.

    Ben Stokes, a world class English cricketer is coming to New Zealand and talk is that he could play for Canterbury. What chance the fact that there’ll be a fuss about someone involved in street violence being welcomed here and allowed to do his normal job? And Canterbury and New Zealand cricket support violence by having anything to do with him?

    Or because he is a 26 year old English “doting dad of two” cricketer it’s all so different and he’s fine?

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-09-27/ben-stokes-arrested-after-pub-incident/8991668

    • High Flying Duck

       /  November 29, 2017

      There were very different circumstances in the Stokes matter Duperez – he was defending a gay couple being attacked, and they had nothing but praise for him afterwards.

      The people Filipo attacked, unprovoked, have been suffering since through ongoing injuries and were threatened again subsequent to the attack from what I recall.

      Despite this, I have read several reports on Stokes coming and suggesting it is going to be controversial due to the (as yet no charges laid) assault incidence.

      Stokes also missed selection for England to go on the Ashes tour, despite being one of their best.

      If you’re trying to draw some kind of double standard here you are falling well short.

      • duperez

         /  November 29, 2017

        I know the circumstances are different. We believe everything Stokes says, and anyone backing him up, and believed nothing Filipo said or anyone who spoke for him. I’ll leave the double standards to others.

        The signs are that the media will be fawning all over Stokes to the same extent that they pilloried anyone who even had the temerity to write a reference letter to the court about the Wellingtonian.

        • High Flying Duck

           /  November 29, 2017

          Straw man there Duperez. Stokes is still under investigation. Filipo has been convicted.

          The people who spoke against Losi were there at the time of the assault, as were the people who spoke for Stokes.

          Stokes may still have to face charges, while Losi having done his time is now back in the Wellington Lions.

          There really is nothing to see here, but keep on trying…

        • High Flying Duck

           /  November 29, 2017

          “Wellington Lions rugby coach Chris Gibbes said it “wasn’t difficult at all” to select wing Losi Filipo.”

          https://www.stuff.co.nz/sport/rugby/provincial/96261630/Controversial-Wellington-rugby-player-Losi-Filipo-named-on-Lions-bench-for-Mitre-10-Cup-game

        • High Flying Duck

           /  November 29, 2017

          Fawning media:

          “…Yet a few days later Canterbury are courting an international superstar in Stokes whose own country England won’t even allow him to be involved in the opening phase of the Ashes series in Australia as police continue to work through his alleged involvement in a fight outside a Bristol nightclub two months ago.

          There is still no sign of charges and they may never eventuate. We shouldn’t assume guilt but on the back of some alarming social media video the Stokes incident has been a very public case and one which English cricket authorities are taking seriously enough to have their best all-round player sit out the game’s most high-profile test series.”

          “But shame on Canterbury for this shameless publicity stunt. New Zealand Cricket should take a stand and prevent this messy situation from unfolding.”

          https://www.stuff.co.nz/sport/opinion/99346157/stench-of-hypocrisy-hangs-over-canterburys-plans-to-play-ben-stokes

  7. PartisanZ

     /  November 29, 2017

    “Consumption itself is a flawed motivational platform for a society” – John F Schumaker.

    Best article I have read for a very long time, not surprisingly written by a retired psychology academic and New Zealander. This may go some way to explain many contemporary societal issues – e.g. note the average age of onset of ‘depression’ 30 years ago compared to today. Might provide greater depth in discussions of things like suicide …?

    https://newint.org/columns/essays/2016/04/01/psycho-spiritual-crisis

    “Repeated consummation of desire, without moderating constraints, only serves to habituate people and diminish the future satisfaction potential of what is consumed … ”

    What was it that happened around 30 years ago …?

    • PDB

       /  November 29, 2017

      You were born?

    • Blazer

       /  November 29, 2017

      I will hazard a guess…Rogernomics,Reaganomics,Thatcherism.

      • Corky.

         /  November 29, 2017

        Or just bad diets. Academics sometimes look for answers in the background. But never what is in front of their noses.

        • Blazer

           /  November 29, 2017

          have another…raspberry bun…Corky!

          • Corky

             /  November 29, 2017

            The bum, whose money tin I shook crumbs into, was arrested the other day during a police sweep. Nothing comes of socialism..or the socialist lifestyle, Blazer.

        • PartisanZ

           /  November 29, 2017

          Corky … What might be “in front of their noses” in this case? Please advise?

          Of course I’m assuming you’ll even bother to read the artlcle? You probably won’t …

          “We think in the context of others, and not for their well-being but their acceptance”

          https://www.maxim.org.nz/thinking-with-others/

          “According to Haidt … “People bind themselves into political teams that share moral narratives…once they accept a particular narrative, they become blind to alternative moral worlds.” Our arguments can tend to end up as “post hoc constructions made up on the fly” to justify our pre-existing position, subconsciously designed to secure our place in the team”.

          I’m no great fan of Maxim Institute – yet another political lobby group peddling Think Tank sophistry – but I honestly could not fashion a better description of virtual characters like Corky and PDB.

          In defense of the obvious retort “How about yourself?”, I cite my post the other day linking an article that [macro-statistically] debunks several myths about income inequality … Myths which I previously adhered to … e.g. Immigration …

          I … changed my mind …

          • phantom snowflake

             /  November 29, 2017

            Hi “Parti”. Totally off topic here but I’m curious as to whether you would enjoy my favorite piece from (so called) feminist writer Laurie Penny:

            https://thebaffler.com/war-of-nerves/meltdown-phantom-snowflakes-penny

            • PartisanZ

               /  November 29, 2017

              ps – so far so good … “Yet the strategies of modern cultural production are bent constantly towards the repression of emotion, the obsessive management of general feelings that, unchecked, might expose two great unspoken truths. The first is that much of modern life is traumatic, unbearable, and profoundly frightening. [Stress full] Acknowledging this openly allows for a second truth, more dangerous in the scope of its possibility: that it might not have to be this way”.

              Bingo!

          • Corky

             /  November 29, 2017

            My comments weren’t a critique of said article. My points was academics, many constrained within the bounds of their speciality, don’t look at the simple things first.

            I used diet as an example. Bowel health could be add to the equation. You can’t discuss mental health without talking of diet, safe food and water.

            Academics, and to be fair, most people, don’t see the connection.

            • PartisanZ

               /  November 29, 2017

              Or the connection between the ‘disaster capitalist’, hard to digest stress culture that markets poisons as ‘food’ …. and its consumers bowel health …

            • Corky

               /  November 29, 2017

              You answered my point most markedly.

            • PartisanZ

               /  November 29, 2017

              No … You’re assuming they missed the connection … I’m stating I believe they assume it

          • High Flying Duck

             /  November 29, 2017

            Parti – here is another article with a slightly different, but very complementary view of society:

            “By dopamine economy, I mean this. We’ve gone beyond creating “consumers” — that was the mad men did: today, we’ve created addicts of the algorithm. People who desperately check their smartphones hundreds of times a day, whose fixated eyes never leave screens, who obsessively-compulsively spend more time in fantasylands than with their families, chasing the breathtaking adrenalin high of dopaminergic release. It’s a model of what it means to human, an institutional form, where people desperately seek ever higher and quicker and sharper highs, and find lower and harsher and darker lows. But is it good for us, let alone them?”

            https://eand.co/the-dopamine-economy-336b239272ef

    • High Flying Duck

       /  November 29, 2017

      You could argue economic changes under the ’84 Labour Government (as I’m sure you do), or you could argue the continued erosion of social structures by the liberal left.

      Perhaps a bit of both is to blame?

      • Blazer

         /  November 29, 2017

        can you expand on this erosion of social structures by the liberal..left?

      • PartisanZ

         /  November 29, 2017

        Another non-reader of links by the sound of it? I do people the respect of reading their links if I intend to reply on the subject matter …

        • High Flying Duck

           /  November 29, 2017

          Not sure what you mean there Parti – the article focuses on the consumerism focus of today’s society as the basis of all ills. It mentions such concepts as “demoralization is a generalized loss of credibility in the assumptions that ground our existence and guide our actions”, but sheets it back to basically free market ideology.
          I would argue the breakdown of social structures and frameworks – family, gender identity, duty and belonging to cultural groups is just as much, if not more, to blame.
          This is borne out by the age at which depression symptoms are now appearing – well before the consumerism mindset would impact.

          • High Flying Duck

             /  November 29, 2017

            To be clear I’m not advocating for a return to rigid social structures and nuclear families for all. I’m just saying that the shift from such structures removes a solid framework upon which to hang your identity and understand your place in the world.
            The new world is far more fluid and has no “anchor”.

            • Blazer

               /  November 29, 2017

              what alot of meaningless ‘gobbledygook’…consumerism conditioning starts with toddlers,as you should be well aware.

            • PartisanZ

               /  November 29, 2017

              Your “all ills” is a very typical what I would call ‘Rightie’ reaction (a la Maxim article), using the ‘Black or White: One or Other’ fallacy that if someone says something that does not include something else they are therefore automatically denying or opposing the ‘something else’ or the ‘other’ …

              I would argue that the breakdown in social structures and frameworks is largely – please note the word ‘largely’ – the result of “the consumerism focus of today’s society” … and Schumaker explains all that …

              The Right’s obsession with a Left-wing “long march through institutions” begins to look suspiciously like a cover for the Right’s own “long march to crush institutions” … perhaps inadvertently bought about by excessive consumerism …

            • High Flying Duck

               /  November 29, 2017

              If you think the world was told by Thatcher, Prebble and Reagan that they wanted plastic junk from China and that’s what life was about and got depressed about it, go for it.

            • PartisanZ

               /  November 29, 2017

              That probably should be “short march to crush institutions” …?

            • PartisanZ

               /  November 29, 2017

              Now you’re minimalizing my argument with your assumed over-simplistic interpretation … I must be a fool because you think so … This is CROC of BS ‘sense in garbage out’ crap …

            • High Flying Duck

               /  November 29, 2017

              So when i say “perhaps a bit of both is to blame” you read it as:

              “‘Black or White: One or Other’ fallacy that if someone says something that does not include something else they are therefore automatically denying or opposing the ‘something else’ or the ‘other’ …”

              Are you sure it isn’t you being a little black and white over alternative viewpoints?

            • High Flying Duck

               /  November 29, 2017

              Sorry Parti – the Chinese junk comment was to Blazer & his fatuous reply.

              I don’t think you a fool – and I’m glad you’ve returned.

              I also don’t discount your argument. I believe consumerism is problematic and has caused a number of issues.

              I also believe it is not the main driver of depression – diet (as Corky wrote) has a large part, and I also think the counter I put up has had a significant effect.

              The article you linked only put up one side of the argument.

            • PartisanZ

               /  November 29, 2017

              I’m very sure HFD, because I wasn’t replying to that comment.

              So now you are trying to score points by referring way back to another comment … And that’s what we’re all here to do, isn’t it, score points against each other?

              I concede that “Perhaps a bit of both is to blame” but I feel that your “breakdown in structures” is underpinned by demoralization arising from excessive consumerism …

            • PartisanZ

               /  November 29, 2017

              But diet is a coefficient of consumerism … ?

              What could be more ‘consumer’ than food … much of which is more-or-less poison … that can’t be good for our digestive health? Nor can the heinously excessive stress involved in our chosen ‘disaster capitalist’ ways of producing and marketing these poisons …

            • High Flying Duck

               /  November 29, 2017

              A valid argument, but one I disagree with.
              And I really wasn’t scoring points. I was trying to get across that I don’t see things as black and white, despite your assertion I do.
              For someone professing to want reasoned debate you get very aggressive and one dimensional in your comments.
              Interesting debate though.

            • PartisanZ

               /  November 29, 2017

              Gotta agree with Blazer about age 14 years being before consumerism kicks in …

            • PartisanZ

               /  November 29, 2017

              “For someone professing to want reasoned debate you get very aggressive and one dimensional in your comments”

              1) Check out my avatar name …

              2) How about if I let you have the last ‘ad hom’ assurption [new word # 102 assertion + assumption] about another person’s character, feelings, expression and intentions – “very aggressive and one dimensional” – we then carry on with what you call “reasoned debate”?

              You may be perceiving directness, forthrightness, passion and robust interchange, along with intelligence matching your own, as one-dimensional aggression?

            • High Flying Duck

               /  November 29, 2017

              No Parti,
              I am perceiving your mis-characterisation of me as a mis-characterisation of me. That is all.
              Reasoned debate requires the assumption the other party is debating in good faith. As I have said above, the article you posted raised some good points. I think you’ll find the dopamine article interesting as well.

            • Corky

               /  November 29, 2017

              It’s great watching two intellectual minds debate the intricacies of ‘debate.’ As a peon, I can only look on in wonderment. However, what little intellectual reserve I have, tells me, Parti will never concede to a balanced view as you have above.

            • Blazer

               /  November 29, 2017

              @Corky….keep it up..Corky ,you may get your ..’patch’ after all.

          • PartisanZ

             /  November 29, 2017

            @Corky – “Parti will never concede to a balanced view as you have above”

            I think you say that because you and HFD are basically on the same team, a la the Maxim article. In fact I actually wrote –

            “I concede that “Perhaps a bit of both is to blame” but I feel that your “breakdown in structures” is underpinned by demoralization arising from excessive consumerism …”

            I do have an issue with conceding to this so-called “balanced view” when I sincerely believe one ‘side’ is actually a subset of the other … that breakdown of societal structures is a subset of excessive consumerism.

            HFD – Yes, based on your quote at least, the dopamine article certainly sounds interesting. I immediately think: If the click-bait dopamine-hit, instant gratification format isn’t excess consumerism personified, I don’t know what is? See also ‘Cultural Narcissism’ –

            ” … a narcissistic culture as one where every activity and relationship is defined by the hedonistic need to acquire the symbols of wealth … It is a culture where liberalism only exists insofar as it serves a consumer society, and even art, sex and religion lose their liberating power … [with] constant competition, there can be no allies, and little transparency. The threats to acquisitions of social symbols are so numerous, varied and frequently incomprehensible, that defensiveness, as well as competitiveness, becomes a way of life. Any real sense of community is undermined—or even destroyed—to be replaced by virtual equivalents that strive, unsuccessfully, to synthesize a sense of community”.

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Narcissism#Cultural_narcissism

            And, regarding “I am perceiving your mis-characterisation of me as a mis-characterisation of me. That is all.”

            SNAP!!!.

            We could leave that ‘personal stuff’ there, you and I, if you want, but I’m not expecting to have the last word …

            • Corky

               /  November 29, 2017

              No, Parti, you only concede a point provided you can add a ryder..

              ”That breakdown of societal structures is a subset of excessive consumerism.”

              The breakdown of societal structures is a sub set of many causes.

              What is a balanced view? A balanced view is first a rational reality. But then the following are added.:

              Stakeholder perspectives ( subsets: prejudices,agendas and wants.). Next comes compromise. Last comes disorder.as disconnects become apparent.

              That’s how debate starts.

              Now you know why I’m a fan of Ayn Rand.

            • Blazer

               /  November 29, 2017

              Ayn Rand..the chain smoking ..welfare beneficiary…Bol.

            • Corky

               /  November 29, 2017

              The beneficiary thing was put to bed last time it was discussed. Chain smoking. So what?

            • PartisanZ

               /  November 29, 2017

              If you’re a fan of Ayn Rand Corky, you’re a road to nowhere … and a thoroughly discredited nowhere to boot …

              As before, please advise the other causes of breakdown of societal structures? I keep hearing about the counter-argument but I’ve seen very little of it, except a smattering from HFD …

            • Corky

               /  November 29, 2017

              Ayn Rand is the killing pen for arguments like yours, Parti. She demands objective reasoning. No flights of fancy.

            • patupaiarehe

               /  November 29, 2017

              Kiaora, e hoa! Great to have you amongst us again PZ

            • PartisanZ

               /  November 29, 2017

              Corky, if she demands objective reasoning she is demanding the impossible. So-called objective reasoning is done by subjective people, of which Rand was just one in billions.

              The idea of objective reasoning IS a flight of fancy!

            • PartisanZ

               /  November 29, 2017

              Still no counter-argument on the actual subject matter Corky?

              Come on …

  8. sorethumb

     /  November 29, 2017

    NZ Needs Migrants

  9. Corky

     /  November 29, 2017

    Unbelievable, but true. This video ad has New Zealand Police swamped with recruitment enquiries. I bet dumbed down youngin’s think those police officers they see stopping traffic on a cold night: subduing a vicious feral or telling parents their son is dead at three am in the morning, are just actors. The ‘real’ stuff cops really get up to is shown in the ad clip.

    So where were those groovy officers when Larry Williams went downtown in Auckland to purchase a hamburger, only for the shop owner to tell him Tongan protesters had made it impossible to stay open. Justice? What Justice.

    http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2017/11/police-recruitment-video-draws-month-s-worth-of-enquiries-in-one-day.html

  10. sorethumb

     /  November 29, 2017

    Nikki Hurst, from Batley, U.K., was assaulted by three Muslim men in a racially motivated attack. Batley’s Police Inspector Mohammed Rauf doesn’t appear to be planning to investigate.

  11. Corky

     /  November 29, 2017

    Hmmm, went to read a post on Whaleoil about the Catholic Church. Damn thing has disappeared.

    • Blazer

       /  November 29, 2017

      thanks..we really needed to know ..that…whats your favourite..colour?

    • Corky

       /  November 29, 2017

      Just thought someone may have the goss. Royal Purple is my favourite colour. And which shade of grey is your favourite colour, Blazer?

      • Blazer

         /  November 29, 2017

        puce.

        • Corky

           /  November 29, 2017

          Puce? Never heard of that before. Nice colour. You have gone up in my estimations, Blazer. From one to two..

  12. PartisanZ

     /  November 29, 2017

    “I’ve got no time for that sort of strength. Not now, not ever. Give me courage instead, the courage to remain permeable, to remain open, the potential for empathy and learning. Make me brave—I don’t care about strong” – Laurie Penny

    Brilliant article posted earlier within another thread by phantom snowflake. I take the liberty of quoting and linking it again … Thanks ps.

    https://thebaffler.com/war-of-nerves/meltdown-phantom-snowflakes-penny

    • phantom snowflake

       /  November 29, 2017

      Glad you liked it; I consider her to be top of the pile of current young “political” writers. Am part way through her latest book “Bitch Doctrine: Essays for Dissenting Adults”. Is a good ‘un.

      • PartisanZ

         /  November 29, 2017

        Cool. The book sounds awesome.

        PartisanZ motto: An ethical world, or I dissent.

        • phantom snowflake

           /  November 29, 2017

          Even mentioning feminist-type ideas/ideals here is a (minor) act of dissent.

          • PartisanZ

             /  November 29, 2017

            … bordering on treason …

            • patupaiarehe

               /  November 29, 2017

              Yeah, rightyo! Whinge about how your ideals get disrespected, when there is no-one here to do so 😀

            • patupaiarehe

               /  November 29, 2017

              Here’s one for you, PZ

  13. patupaiarehe

     /  November 29, 2017

    The placing of strength above compassion, might above morals, not just in private but proudly and in public, is perhaps the most frightening shift in popular discourse over the past six months

    Oh fucking ‘puhleez’… Seriously??

    • phantom snowflake

       /  November 29, 2017

      Was published early 2017; refers to Trump presidential campaign. Seriously!

      • PartisanZ

         /  November 29, 2017

        But arguably its been going on for around the duration of recorded human history … certainly modern human history …

        • patupaiarehe

           /  November 29, 2017

          I suspect you’ll enjoy this analogy PZ…
          The pen may be mightier than the sword, but the gun is mightier than both. Until the guy with the gun only has 12 bullets, and 1000 men against him…

  14. patupaiarehe

     /  November 30, 2017

    Yup. this space is reserved for great music. Enjoy….