Open Forum – Thursday

8 March 2018

Forum

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30 Comments

  1. Corky

     /  March 8, 2018

    Yesterday I criticised sceptics for wanting dowsing banned because it didn’t fit their worldview. Now the New Zealand Medical Council has a problem with chemists selling supposed quack cures.

    Even if they are right, what has that to do with doctors? If people want to take supposed quack cures and get either better or worse, that’s their problem.

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/GE1803/S00020/nzma-disappointed-in-position-on-alternative-medicines.htm

    • robertguyton

       /  March 8, 2018

      I’m with Corky on this one!

      • Kitty Catkin

         /  March 8, 2018

        You would be. You seem to be soulmates.

  2. Corky

     /  March 8, 2018

    Bad news for those running Intel chips in their computers. Big brother is watching. Big brother always wins…eventually.

    http://www.zdnet.com/article/minix-intels-hidden-in-chip-operating-system/

    • Kitty Catkin

       /  March 8, 2018

      Big Brother. it’s a proper name.

      • Kitty Catkin

         /  March 8, 2018

        From George Orwell’s book ‘1984’.

  3. sorethumb

     /  March 8, 2018

    Is Learning a Foreign Language Really Worth It? A New Freakonomics Radio Podcast

    Bryan Caplan, an economist at George Mason University, talks about how much time the average U.S. student spends learning a language, and how well that learning is retained. (Spoiler alert: not very well!) Caplan also tells us what he really thinks about foreign language education in the U.S.:

    CAPLAN: If people are going to get some basic career benefit out of it, or it enriches their personal life, then foreign language study is great. But if it’s a language that doesn’t really help their career, they’re not going to use it, and they’re not happy when they’re there, I really don’t see the point, it seems cruel to me.

    Perhaps most important, Caplan points to the opportunity cost of language study:

    CAPLAN: There are so many kids who remain barely literate, and numerate in their own language.
    http://freakonomics.com/podcast/is-learning-a-foreign-language-really-worth-it-a-new-freakonomics-radio-podcast/

    I spoke with some Die hard liberals from the US and they scoffed at the idea of learning te reo.

    • duperez

       /  March 8, 2018

      Caplan would probably say the same about science too: “If people are going to get some basic career benefit out of it, or it enriches their personal life, then science study is great. But if it’s science stuff that doesn’t really help their career, they’re not going to use it, and they’re not happy when they’re there, I really don’t see the point, it seems cruel to me.”

      • Kitty Catkin

         /  March 8, 2018

        Learning a language concentrates the mind and is a good mental exercise.

        • duperez

           /  March 8, 2018

          Maybe the downticks indicate that Caplan’s notions are well accepted here. Which could mean that learning to concentrate the mind and mental exercises aren’t seen to be of basic career benefit. You don’t run up hills when you play rugby but running up them trains the body, stretches it so that when it gets to the game it can handle it.

          The mind needs stretching and challenging too.

          • Kitty Catkin

             /  March 8, 2018

            Some people’s minds are so narrow that it would take a stick of gelignite to stretch them.

  4. duperez

     /  March 8, 2018

    You gotta laugh. Found this on Whaleoil.

    “On a tiny, very niche political NZ blog yesterday I came across a post about National’s founding principles.” The ‘h’ in ‘niche’ is probably a spelling mistake.😊

    • Corky

       /  March 8, 2018

      Just a little utu, Duperez. I’m sure Pete will deliver some of his own when he gets the time

    • Corky

       /  March 8, 2018

      By the way, were you reading or writing at the Whalers place?

      • duperez

         /  March 8, 2018

        Tried writing (not today). Wasn’t ethereal, yet it disappeared into the ether! Polite, relevant, specific, coherent but against the prevailing view.

        I occasionally look on there. For prep I take the dogs out in the paddock give them instructions they can’t follow so I’m in a pissed-off mood because I can’t get my way. Then I stamp my gumboots in the cow shit so the smell and look is on me. I come to the house, smash my head on the concrete block wall three or four times, then I reckon I’m in a state to fit right in on there so open the site. 🙃

  5. lurcher1948

     /  March 8, 2018

    I notice the rightwing newstalkZB the voice of national haven’t said a word that a govt dept under Sir Key and the departed Bill English spied on 100s of ChCh residents because they were exercising their legal rights.So Sir Key did more than pull waitress ponytails he spied on NZs

    • Kitty Catkin

       /  March 8, 2018

      Sir John Key, not Sir Key.

      • Kitty Catkin

         /  March 8, 2018

        You’ll have a long wait.

        • Kitty Catkin

           /  March 8, 2018

          That was meant for Alan.

          I think that [deleted] Gower is, as usual, putting the worst possible interpretation on this. People do pad insurance claims and that puts all our premiums up. He was on 3 tonight, screwing his face up in that bizarre girning way. I don’t know why they haven’t told him not to make faces at the camera as it looks very silly indeed.

  6. lurcher1948

     /  March 8, 2018

    PG stuff im not posting(WHATS THE POINT) UNDER MODERATION and you are left behind larry williams said all districts should help freedom campers with free services BUT YOU BLOCK MY POSTS BAN ME OR LET ME POST???IM NO WORSE than anyone else, its pathetic im behind the 8 ball forever, Its been nice PG but after so long you havnt given any slack on the choke chain,

    [Some of your comments are fine, some are borderline, and some are simply unacceptable here, sometimes to the extent of being a legal risk. You have been consistently unpredictable, so I can’t risk not vetting what you post. Sorry, but’s that’s how it is. PG]

  7. Alan Wilkinson

     /  March 8, 2018

    Waiting for the Left (that means you, Lurch, Blazer) and the Greens (that means you, Robert) to praise the Key Government and farmers for achieving a ten-fold reduction in bobby calf deaths since 2008:
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=12008960

    • robertguyton

       /  March 8, 2018

      They’ve reduced the appalling statistic, due to pressure from activists, Alan? Well done, those activists!

      • Traveller

         /  March 8, 2018

        Think you’ll find it was Euan MacDonald that highlighted it the most.

  8. Kitty Catkin

     /  March 8, 2018

    It’s unimpressive that tens of millions are being wasted with students taking the money and dropping out; there is little incentive for some to stick at it. It would have been better to have made the last year the ‘free’ one (i.e. paid for by everyone else)

    • PDB

       /  March 9, 2018

      Labour bribe as many students if you make the last year free Kitty…

      • Kitty Catkin

         /  March 9, 2018

        Not really. As so many don’t finish their first year, they would not be costing the taxpayer tens of millions if they were not having their expenses paid.

  9. sorethumb

     /  March 8, 2018

    Council votes for dual name
    Peter Millar – 5 days ago
    Given the results of the “Public Consultation” previously published:
    “According to consultation, out of 1856 respondents, 49.46 percent opposed a dual name, 47.52 supported it and 3.02 percent were not sure.”
    I would have thought by the law of averages, councillor votes should have been closer to these percentages rather than 13 to 1??
    Obviously the public opinion meant zilch.
    http://gisborneherald.co.nz/localnews/3256121-135/council-votes-for-dual-name

    • PartisanZ

       /  March 8, 2018

      Other than a few weeks spent cultivating ‘popularity’ for an election day, since when has public opinion had anything much to do with politics?

      And ‘popularity’ is a multi-faceted thing related to public opinion but certainly not the same.

      Politics is an ‘art’ rather like ‘leadership’ or ‘oratory’, and they say artists are always at the leading-edge of progress. They sense “the change” in advance, express it and rise to the challenge, where others cower and whinge before the inexorable …

      “Dual naming” and/or “renaming” is part-and-parcel of post-colonial redress. Really its got its old name back … Had it ‘returned’ … As inevitably as day follows night …