Is Winston Peters playing the PM on foreign policy?

Guest post from Gezza


Interesting Opinion Piece by Patrick Smellie:

US and Chinese officials met in Beijing this week for the first talks since both countries’ presidents agreed a trade war ceasefire at last month’s G-20 summit in Argentina.

By early March, they need a plan that simultaneously softens the impact on China of the US’s new embrace of protectionism while starting to deal with China’s rampant intellectual property theft and subsidies that make its state-backed corporations unfair global competitors.

In doing so, both leaders will be seeking a win for their respective domestic audiences.

Getting there will be no mean feat. The Chinese ‘long view’ of history is a powerful organising principle for the Middle Kingdom’s global ambitions. Unlike Trump, its leadership is capable of thinking long-term.

I don’t know if that’s a fair assessment. Trump is capable of thinking long-term. He just isn’t capable of seeing other viewpoints and considering them, or of understanding what motivates others, or of adapting his negotiation strategies when it’s evident he could approach things differently. Or of concentrating enuf on details to foresee adverse consequences or opposition that could work against him.

He’s a rich kid who’s always done whatever it takes to get what he wants. And that includes lying, going bankrupt, and paying people to arrange for him to then profit from the misery & poverty that’s sometimes caused others. His narcissism works well for him when he’s in total control & surrounded by sycophants who will do his bidding. Or when he can cheat and lie & get away with it because he can bankrupt less wealthy opponents or victims, and for him the ends (getting what he wants) has always justified any means.

But now he’s not in total control. So he’s often chaotically flailing around in pursuit of long-term plans that he might deliver, but might screw up because he’s so flawed he makes people want to get rid of him to stop the chaos and division and wrecking of America’s standing in the world.

The talks also occur against a backdrop of heightened competition for defence and security influence around the world.

There has been questionable co-ordination between Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and her Foreign Minister and deputy Winston Peters over our relationships with China and the US.
The US-led initiative to keep Chinese-built Huawei and ZTE componentry out of Western 5G mobile networks represents the sharp point of intersection in trade and security tensions.

Nations try to pursue security and trade agendas on separate tracks, but one inevitably bleeds into the other in ways. At best, at a global level, these current tensions may be bad for global economic growth. At worst, they could become the catalyst for conflict, which an American president desperately seeking to project strength might embrace.

For New Zealand, this simultaneous escalation of trade and security tensions between our traditional western ally and our largest trading partner is fraught with the risk of becoming collateral damage in the ensuing contest of empires. As a member of the Five Eyes cyber-spying network, New Zealand sits on the US side of the anti-Huawei fence. But it also seeks an upgraded free trade agreement and legitimately worries that Beijing could turn off the tap on agricultural exports, international students, Chinese tourists – or all three.

Australia has already suffered for its more emphatically pro-US stance.

We should never put all our eggs in one basket. Both the US and the Chinese can punish us economically for simply pursuing our own issues-based foreign policy when they want to bully us into siding with them or opting out in disputes between their economic and foreign policy initiatives and engagements.

Wider free trade with as many other nations as possible is clearly desirable, but trade in what? As other countries are forced by Trade Agreements to become more productive and competitive with our major food exports, what else do we have?

Clearly, the New Zealand government needs to pursue any rebalancing in the relationships to the two biggest protagonists in our region with great care.

Just before Christmas, there were worrying signs to suggest such care is, if not absent, then lacking, with questionable co-ordination between Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and her Foreign Minister and deputy Winston Peters.

The Ardern approach embraces multi-lateralism, ‘progressive’ free trade agreements that do more to protect national sovereignty than in the past, and a new demonstration of leadership on climate change. On the world stage, Ardern has shone as a beacon of optimism and inter-generational leadership change.

That may be how she is portrayed here but apart from US female talk show hosts, who else in the world cares? So she’s a minor celebrity abroad with people who don’t count. What impact will she have on other world leaders? How many other young intergenerational leaders are there who will hearken to her siren song and make the world a kinder place? Isn’t her government rather chaotic and it’s benefits and drawbacks & objectives all rather fuzzy? Could it all just crash and burn? Hope not, but I just don’t know until we know what the werkinggruppes produce for them to make (or justify) policies from – and what they ignore.

Meanwhile, Peters and NZ First Defence Minister Ron Mark have made the running on defence and security policy in ways that are pulling New Zealand much closer to the US.

Mark’s defence strategy paper saw New Zealand explicitly criticise China’s expansionism in the South China Sea for the first time and his announcement of a multi-billion dollar upgrade of air force surveillance capability to include potential for anti-submarine weaponry were highly significant nods to Washington DC.

Peters took that a step further last month. In a speech to an elite US audience on the Pacific region shortly before meetings with deputy vice-president Mike Pence and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Peters said: “We unashamedly ask the United States to engage more and we think it is in your vital interests to do so.”

Time was “of the essence” as “larger players are renewing their interest in the Pacific with an attendant level of strategic competition”. These and other parts of the speech represented serious new lines in the sand for New Zealand foreign policy.

We probably should want the US to engage more in the South Pacific. China’s interest is self-interest. And the degrading of American influence & power is vital to that. But do we want to engage more with the US under Trump? Really? Trump’s interest is American self-interest. Hopefully when Trump is gone – which may be by 2020 – sanity and a more careful, thoughtful President will make them take more of an interest in promoting & protecting the interests of free speech democracies in the South Pacific on both moral & shared interests grounds.

But when asked whether she had read the speech prior to delivery, let alone whether the Cabinet had discussed it, Ardern gave an almost breezy dismissal.

That is deeply worrying.

Regardless of whether Peters is articulating a revised foreign policy stance that the whole coalition government agrees with, such revisions require the active engagement of both the Prime Minister and the Cabinet.

Failing to insist on that fuels the narrative that Peters is successfully playing Ardern not only on domestic policy issues, but on foreign policy as well, leveraging his party’s impacts far beyond the mandate implied by its 5 per cent support at the 2017 election.

Ok. Maybe. So what? Is National likely to have any more of a coherent foreign policy or to do anything different?

https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/109828977/is-winston-peters-playing-the-pm-on-foreign-policy

Guest post by Mother – follow-up

My uncle’s police statement reveals that –

– he knew that his attack would make life thereafter difficult for me in our community.

– he hated me as a child and youth.

– he harboured long term disrespect for my parents.

– he disrespects me as a mother and holds complete disrespect for my children.

– he has a sick mind and a cruel attitude regarding sex acts.

My uncle is in his late eighties. Police used every excuse for their bungling. At any rate, our Police and courts are busy meeting the needs of the faux martyrs, the wannabe victims and the criminal harassers.

My uncle gave his Police statement 23 years after attacking me. Enough time for a change of heart?

~~~~~~~~~

THE LAST BASTIAN

My last two and a half years were spent seeking understanding from the PCANZ.

Last week, their negligence was complete when the contact person for complaints, whose position is to support complainants, wrote –

“Please do not continue to correspond with me. As I stated previously, my response to you in the past have not been helpful to you and have upset you. I have taken advice and my role as complaints officer for the PCANZ has completed.”

This man represented (to me) the last Bastian within the PCANZ. He is a most respected man in my community – well known for his meekness, level headedness and an esteemed career. Oh dear, should I fall down again in shame? Should I? Temptation remains. It takes a long time to fully escape the psychological entanglements such that PCANZ instilled in my psyche.

I requested an appointment with a Christian counsellor, a PCANZ worshipper. No hope. She received my letter (the same as my first guest post) and suggested that I seek help from mental health services. So it seems that professional counsellors expect that the abusive practises of their church cause people to need the attention of mental health professionals.

TRUST is HEALTHY

I think it is widely understood that completely victimised victims of familial sexual abuse just have to quietly get on with their lives, choosing carefully who and when to trust.

I quietly tried to keep peace with my clan. I quietly told PCANZ to leave me out of their reconciliation efforts with PN. Even so, I intended to quietly attempt their assigned meeting. When they secretly changed their minds, I intended to quietly continue at church, in the hope of quietly serving my community.

The PCANZ took away everything I did quietly and safely. They turned my life into an unwanted noise. Before, and especially after my uncle’s assault, all I ever did was in a quiet way. I have no words to describe how hurt I am by their nonsense. Everything I have done since PN’s letter has been pushed by adrenalin. Every day – adrenalin. Do you know how dangerous that is? Simply put, I am abandoned to Jesus’ care. I trust Him.

I would never have considered taking action against my uncle. This necessary action is on PCANZ. This is another noise, a strife created by them which I would rather avoid. I have repeatedly asked for help with my concern regarding potential repercussions. I am frightened. Do PCANZ care? Silence.

My careful choosing of trust turned into a conglomerative mess. Trust is what the PCANZ preaches.

Trust. It is helpful to trust PG with my testimony. I like how Your NZ is a free speech blog for those who don’t threaten free speech.

A few days ago I made my debut on Your NZ. At one point I found it necessary to express that Your NZ is mine too. I was easily found out as a Christian, despite not saying so at first, and I discovered that a few people on Your NZ are disrespectful (bordering on hostile) to Christians. I’m pleased about this experience now that I feel stronger for standing my ground. It was a win for me. It was another incidence of victory in Jesus while I ran on dangerous adrenaline. That might seem like nothing to some people. For me, it is danger – confrontation which I hate.

In my youth I made a decision to never be ashamed to name my Lord. I believe in Church, even more so after suffering abuse in the churches. However, one does not necessarily need to be a Christian to believe in/appreciate Church. This is what some of my comments were about. It is all about freedom.

My Lord is Jesus Christ the Saviour. He is my Good Shepherd. All my trust is in Jesus. For me, that means freedom in Christ.

I will hold true to my stated decision not to continue blogging with Your NZ if insults are thrown at my person hood again.

Thank you Peter George. I believe the Good Shepherd led me to you. The adrenalin of deep out-coming trauma since PN’s letter has sent me in several interesting uneasy directions which I would have never before considered.

~~~~~~~

NORMALITY
I never imagined I would break down in the dentist’s chair, several times. My dentist seems to think that listening is as useful as looking at my teeth. He has comforting brotherly A+ hugs. He is a masculine gem and his assistants are just as kind hearted.

Supermarkets are difficult and that’s an understatement. I will never forget the time I was stuck at the checkout. Somebody else’s kind husband/father/ brother, noticed my silent distress. I don’t remember how he did it, but I do remember walking out with him and loading up my groceries with his help. That was my sweet supermarket experience. Most of the times I stood stuck (“that letter, those words, his letter, his WORDS, DAD’s words”) staring at a shelf, pretending to be looking for items. The pain of PN’s letter never eased.

When I received the trespass notice I nearly laughed, until I read the accompanying letter. More vitriol. ‘They’ told me that I would destroy my family if I continued to –(continued to do what? I don’t think even the letter writer knew that detail.) And my husband and children were allowed to worship at church, if they refrained from speaking.

The malice – the cruelty toward a thinking person longing for community! The pain would not budge. Lumps in my innards. Loving so much that I dared to risk hating them. My hatred only humoured them. Not even my hatred, after a life time of trusting them, budged them! I dared to hate God once, recently. No big deal, although I don’t recommend it because it’s silly. And yet? Perhaps He listened to that. Maybe that’s why I discovered a way to reach closure by writing this guest post.

I have not mentioned my birth family’s behaviour. Nobody likes to break rank with their birth family do they? My conscience is clear (almost). I think that they broke rank with me.

Since my uncle’s attack I felt like death warmed up. He was a funeral director. I could not get out of my own way. I did not feel normal. I experienced approx four to five times each year feeling normal. It happens at unexpected times, always when I am alone. Something ‘shifts’ and I feel normal. I try to hold onto it but it is brief and fleeting. It slips away and I forget until the next time.

Friendships. Since fighting PN’s letter, they’re either all gone or uncomfortably changed. But with dentist (and optometrist) experiences under my belt, I reckon I can start again on extra friendships. My husband is my best friend, and my children are the best people in the world.

My marriage? That’s taboo. We are both very private. I never imagined in a million years I would fight against PCANZ. I detest the anxiety of confrontation and my husband avoids confrontation.

Indoctrination – there remains the thought that I am healing because of the prayers of PCANZ individuals. (I believe that prayer is the most powerful force of all.) Yes, some of them may pray, but I choose to be free from their indoctrination. I think that their prayers, if devoid of action for getting me back into fellowship with them, are not prayers that reach God. I have reason to believe that a Baptist pastor prays for my family. This man used to be a PCANZ minister (until they hurt him). There are others praying. Of course.

In September 2018, I destroyed my infant baptism certificate. This was another part of taking action against PCANZ’s grip on my psyche. It was a pretty certificate, with pictures of NZ flora and beautiful words. It was the only certificate I ever cherished.

HOPE

I love the PCANZ. They did massive wrecking, but I would go back into fellowship with them in a heartbeat, if only they wanted me. But they don’t want me. They want PN and his ilk.

CHURCH

I realise that some, perhaps many, may wonder what is so sad about being discarded from Christian fellowship. If you don’t understand, then I can’t explain it because I think my explanations about this are not appropriate for Your NZ. Suffice to say, Church is not a club. I can only suggest that if any wish to understand why I was traumatised by being put out of fellowship, the answers are in the Bible if you read it with humility and ask God to teach you. Many variety of links are acceptable on Your NZ. The Bible is widely read, and deeply cherished by persecuted Christians living in oppressive circumstances. I think the Bible is the most valuable link. It doesn’t concern me if others don’t understand why I have experienced trauma from abuse in the churches. I think it would be great if others felt free to share their experiences of abuse and harassment if, like me, this would aid their ability to ‘move on.’

For anyone who understands implicitly the experience of being stuck, of not being able to function free from blurriness…. there are many ways to describe it. I think the best description is ‘mind twisting oppression’ — You are OK. You are sovereign. That’s because you are made in God’s image.

If you are one for whom God/Jesus Christ has no place in your reckoning – lucky you! Even so, I strongly suspect that most NZers understand that it is in our best interests for our nation to remain a Christian society.

Let’s all cherish our freedom of speech. It is the way of the future for us all.

~~~~~~~

Please feel free to ask me whatever you want. Speaking my mind is wonderful. For those who have never experienced a long term inability to grasp hold of freedom of speech, I ask you to just be kind. I have reason to believe that this is the expectation of Your NZ’s Peter George.

Strong folks – you never know when the weak within the group might bless you, but you can trust.
Weak folks – you never know how your vulnerability is helping strong folk, but you can trust. Meanwhile, you can choose to lose as much pride and self righteousness as you perceive the strong could lose.

Trust is healthy.

Kind regards

Mother
(I would love to give my name for the sake of integrity, but ‘Mother’ is best because of PCANZ, and probably will remain so).

Guest Post by Mother

In July 2016 I received a letter from a PCANZ pastor (‘P’). This letter caused me huge distress which is ongoing.

It is impossible for a victim of sexual abuse within a familial setting to plan, on her own, for a resolution. Yes, I have my husband but he became a victim along with me, and he is busy providing for his family.

We are told; Speak up – There are people to help – Reach out – We care – We love you – There’s always a solution – Don’t hide away – You’re not alone.

I am alone. It was twenty eight years of struggling alone because I knew that the onus was on me to keep peace and comfort for the clan.

Those decades were also spent blaming myself. ‘If only I had more love I would not feel so isolated, so invisible. I just have to reach out more. I’m not trying hard enough. I’m too difficult.’

The letter.
HURT.
I never imagined that the PCANZ could practise such malice and nonsense.

(Childhood – normal. I was part of a close knit clan.

(12 years old – uncle began intermittent ‘minor’ sexual harassment. I coped alone.

(22 years old – uncle premeditated, deliberately searched for me and seriously sexually assaulted me, waking me from sleep. It was a callous attack. I froze, then afterwards shouldered the clan’s emotional pain. I forgave him immediately. This was a big mistake.

(Twenty eight years of worsening disrespect toward me within my clan and community.

Meanwhile, I protected my uncle’s reputation, my aunty’s and cousins feelings, I maintained the facade of clan unity and I cared deeply for my parents’ emotional health.)

All this was private.
Safe.
No one else’s business except if I shared it with them in confidence.
Not any more.
P unfairly exposed it.
This time, I decided to fight.
If I had known what it would cost my family, I would never have decided to fight.

In June 2016 I wrote a formal letter of complaint to PCANZ leaders. I was concerned about a grave matter involving P. The matter was unrelated to me personally but I was deeply concerned for community and PCANZ. My letter stated that I wanted to be left out of proceedings. This was because P had been harassing me since 2013 in regards my church youth choir start up. (He had attended a meeting where I confronted my uncle. This meeting was the result of Police ineptitude. I would not have attempted that meeting if I had known what my uncle’s police statement contained, provided by him 23 years after the attack. That meeting was hideous.)

In July 2016 P wrote his response and broke my heart. Because of him I am estranged from parents, siblings, wider clan and now community. Because of him (and my own decision to fight), my credibility crumbled. He used the historic assault to assassinate my character, in the process manipulating my ill father. I presume his letter was an attempt to emotionally blackmail me into silence. That’s why I fought.

I fought hard, harder and hardest. I presumed that PCANZ leaders would be fair. They were very unfair. They decided to have a meeting for resolution where I was expected to cope with P. I explained to them why that was inappropriate but said I would prepare to do my best. They continually delayed the meeting then in May 2017 they convened and concluded secretly without me. I was heart broken again.

As part of my preparation for the meeting I had resigned myself to the fact that I would probably be re victimised. The fact that leaders refused to support me at the meeting (and had ignored my initial pleas to leave me out of their process) caused me to face up to that fact. From there, I decided that I would have to leave the PCANZ whom I love. My plan was to have my say, lose and move on.

(Move on – move on – move on. Forgive and forget. Move on. This is all I ever wanted to do since my uncle’s attack. This was always my reason for any quiet action I took. Why does my community make it impossible to move on?) These thoughts were once private too.

So, the PCANZ failed to follow their own stated process for complaints, and I changed my mind about leaving them. I had been stripped of my speaking rights and I presumed I could cope with that. (PCANZ are big on saying that the Lord’s grace covers over all our sin. This was part of my indoctrination – not indoctrination which worked both ways. It was mind twisting and led me to believe that I would have to forgive any and every nonsense. But when I needed mercy?…..just more insults.) I loved them, so I forgave them. I planned to quietly continue at church.

I tried to continue quietly. On the last Sunday in August 2017 I realised that the congregation should know that national leaders don’t follow their own stated process. I simply planned to inform them. As I stood speaking one person repeatedly harassed me, another videoed me and another turned off the microphone. I cracked under the pressure of too much long term heartache, disruption and exhaustion. I stood on a pew to get away from the harasser and to try to finish what I wanted to say. It was a bad look.

Still, I figured that I could continue at church. Being made to appear foolish never stopped me before.

Five days later they trespassed me, accompanied by another vitriolic letter. At the same time somebody gave a malicious false report to Oranga Tamariki about me and my children. While my husband staved off their aggression I had a meeting with Presbytery. This meeting was also a mess. The trauma I suffered by being put out of fellowship was huge. My concern for family because of the lies to OT was overwhelming.

Over several weeks, the young interrogator from OT did her best to upset us. Thankfully, during our formal interview, she was accompanied by a superior. This experienced lady said, ‘well, it’s not nice to be slandered.’

It is now November 2018 and I continue to try to heal. Seven years ago the Police began to bungle my uncle’s case. That’s another story, initiated by my father and aggravated by PCANZ. Recently the detective inspector advised us that the best we can do for community regarding my uncle is to publicly name him. I am seriously considering this, although I think it is unfair of Police to put this upon me. If Police had properly done their job, P would have had nothing to harass me about and I would still be a part of community.

As it stands I am bereft, isolated and traumatised. Yet I know that I must let the public know my story.

I spent more than the last year sharing my life testimony with many PCANZers and challenging them, to no avail. They simply do not want me, nor my children. All in all, these are people who seem to think that sexual abuse and harassment is a way for a woman to be closer to God as she learns to forgive. I have even had to listen to pastors who say that this experience of suffering is important for me because it’s like being nailed to the cross.

All my life I listened to teaching about acceptance, tolerance, honesty, sound thinking, impartiality, bravery, community spirit, generosity, forgiveness, kindness, mercy, freedom in Christ….

I have come to the conclusion that the PCANZ does not behave like a Christian church. Are they something else?

However, I still believe in Church. When will I heal? There is an unwelcome mantra in my head that goes, ‘they put me out of fellowship, I love them, they put me out of fellowship, it hurts, they put me out of fellowship, what’s wrong with me, perhaps I could change, they put me out of fellowship, it hurts too much, they put me out…..’

There is a lot more to my story, including Anglican strangeness when the PCANZ gossip bounced. One of my counsellors told me to keep away from the churches because ‘the leaders are crazy’. He told me this when I shared with him the trauma caused by PN’s letter and he said that he hears many such testimonies.

Apart from maiming me with his letter, P’s letter admitted to insincerity. He also provided a recriminating statement regarding the deceit of people he supported in the grave matter which was the crux of my complaint. Where are the PCANZ leaders? In my experience, they are each gazing at their navels while patting each others’ backs. Yes, apart from my distress and cries for understanding, I gave them a wee bit of cheek. They couldn’t cope with that. As leaders they dish out abuse and insults, yet they cry if their victim fights back. I think they are the proverbial playground bully.

As I try to heal, I can honestly say that the PCANZ create pain. They are harsher than harsh. They isolate and maim those who are already too hurt. They are family wreckers. I am qualified to know. I am a wife and mother, and I loved and respected the PCANZ all my life yet they tried to separate me from my husband and children. I love and honour my parents. I want the best for everybody including P’s family.

I would like to publish the three letters.

I have a tendency for effervescent hope in Jesus Christ my Redeemer which I learn from scripture and which I continue to practise.

Freedom of speech is the way to go. Let’s not lose that.

Free speech battle brews between feminist and trans-activist groups

From Gezza:

A company has pulled posters commemorating women’s suffrage after pressure from LBTGI youth groups who say the feminist blogger behind the poster campaign holds transgender exclusionary beliefs.

Phantom Billsticker’s managing director Jamey Holloway says the company previously hung posters for Wellington writer and activist Renee Gerlich as part of women’s suffrage projects. This year marks 125 years since women gained the right to vote in New Zealand.  At issue this year were complaints triggered by the tagline “suffragists worked for the female sex – stop rewriting history” that appeared on Gerlich’s posters – a statement some see as denying transgender women’s right to identify as women.


One of Wellington activist Renee Gerlich’s posters commemorating women’s suffrage. The tagline has been criticised by some as promoting the rejection transgender women’s right to identify as women.

Tabby Besley, national co-ordinator for InsideOUT – a group that advocates for young people of minority genders and sexualities – says the tagline displayed a subtle transphobia.

Phantom asked InsideOUT for advice after receiving complaints about Gerlich’s posters. Her understanding was the posters were harmful to trans and gender diverse people. “It’s a platform for what we see as hate speech … her blog is full of incredibly harmful words,” Besley says.

WRITING BY RENEE: https://reneejg.net/
Trigger warning: feminism, women’s rights

Holloway says many posters had been ripped down around Wellington and a “large number of people” had asked the company not to poster Gerlich’s campaign – but there were also calls in support of Gerlich.  Holloway says while it was not his job to “police a fight between marginalised groups” quashing anyone’s right to free speech was something the company was loathe to do.

“It’s an easy decision with clear hate speech or denigration, this is a lot more difficult – and I don’t necessarily think I’m best placed to make the call, but someone has to,” Holloway says. Gerlich had said she would take the matter up with the Human Rights Commission – a move the company welcomes.

The core issue was not the posters themselves, but Gerlich’s blog, Holloway says. In it Gerlich criticises a lack of voices in media from gender critical feminists on gender identity, while saying the promotion of gender self-identification was constant.

Questioning trans-activism often resulted in a backlash especially the use of the label TERF – trans-exclusionary radical feminist. “This slur is today’s ‘witch’ and is often accompanied by other insults as well as threats of violence, ostracism and loss of livelihood,” Gerlich said.

More ….
https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/106356864/free-speech-battle-brews-between-feminist-and-transactivist-groups
… … … …

For heaven’s sake. The RadFems & The Intersexers collide. I guess Jordan Peterson would have some predictable views on all of this.

Now the latest Gender Fluid fad is starting to run smack bang into the Pro-Fem/Anti-Men fad AND Transgender Rights AND the Free Speech thing!

Gawd luv a duck ! Stop the world. I want to get off.

⚔ Sir Gerald 🛡

“Some idiotic female reporter” versus Winston Peters

From Gezza:


I posted a comment yesterday evening about watching the last minute or two of Winston Peters’ final Monday post-Cabinet Press briefing via Lurchy’s live link. And that all I managed to catch was some idiotic female reporter loudly asking him if whisky should be swilled or swallowed – & his frustrated response.

I thought it was such a pathetic, vacuous question I mentally switched off remembering how it ended & just wondered who the “bimbo” was.

Looks like the “bimbo” might have been a senior Herald poltical reporter, Claire Trevett? And that the whole point of the question was to manufacture a situation where she could provoke him into commenting on Peter Goodfellow’s anti-Peters remarks at the weekend’s National Party conference.

Because she’s chosen to make his response – threatening that if Goodfellow cared to repeat his remarks outside of the party conference he, Winston, would tell everyone why Goodfellow shouldn’t even be the President of the National Party – the highlight of her report from the Press briefing.

It was a classic Winston threat – a ‘hint’ that there might be some dodgy doings or dirt that he will reveal. But which, if it came to it, might in fact turn out to be nothing more than a smart arse personal attack on his abilities.

It still irritates me, though, that this is what a senior reporter for the Herald set up to create a sensationalist headline & makes me despair about how low the bar for the standard of political reporting has dropped.

Has it always been this low – or was he fair game on this this one? Was this really something of political importance we needed to know?

Interested in others’ thoughts.

Claire Trevett: Winston Peters scores himself E for Everything is Awesome

 

We don’t know how lucky we are

From Gezza:


More outrageous injustice from another of Trump’s repressive regime “good friends”

Egypt: Cairo court sentences 75 protesters to death

An Egyptian court has sentenced 75 people to death for participating in a 2013 protest against the overthrow of the country’s democratically elected president Mohamed Morsi.

Senior members of the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood organisation were among those ordered executed by the Cairo Criminal Court on Saturday for their involvement with the sit-in demonstration at Rabaa Square in the Egyptian capital, Cairo.

The rulings will be referred to Egypt’s chief Islamic legal authority, the Grand Mufti, for a non-binding opinion. Egyptian law requires any capital sentence to be referred to the Grand Mufti before any execution can take place.

The Mufti’s decision is rarely ignored by the courts. In 2014, the Mufti rejected a death sentence proposed for the leader of the Muslim Brotherhood, Mohamed Badie, who is part of the same case. Badie has since been sentenced to life in prison. A final verdict is expected by September 8.

More…
https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2018/07/egypt-cairo-court-sentences-75-protesters-death-180728101431551.html

No member of the Egyptian military has even been investigated for the deaths of several hundred unarmed protesters murdered by the Army when its commander El-Sisi seized power. A Middle Eastern Egyptian political commentator on Aljazeera tv described the charges against many of those condemned to death by the heavily politicised Egyptian Court as “ludicrous”, with “no evidence to support them”, as frequently happens with political rivals & prisoners in Egyptian Courts.

I expect that the sentences will all be commuted to life imprisonment, although with Egyptian courts & maybe even the Mufti being simple extensions of the ruling repressive regime – like in most Middle Eastern countries it seems – who knows?

The commentator observed that the Egyptian Courts’ lack of respect for fair trials & the repressive government’s suppression of any questioning or dissent is only likely to continue – & possibly even increase – as El-Sisi is further emboldened by the uncritical, self-serving, ever-increasing, arms sales & support of the US, UK, & other Western European governments. Like Israel’s Netanyahu apartheid regime has been.
… … …

I agree entirely, I thought to myself. But, listening to him, I couldn’t help also thinking that, while I’m appalled at the lack of any evidence of our Western democratic notions of free speech & a fair trial in Egypt & other Middle Eastern countries, Egypt has an ongoing problem suppressing ISIS & other Islamic extremists, & there was a fairly high probability that the Courts under the democratically elected-rule of The Muslim Brotherhood would become increasingly theocratised, &, given how things are elsewhere in the ME, that Muslim attacks on, and repression of, non-Muslims or dissenters would very likely be as, or more, frequent than they have been under the El-Sisi regime.

And that thank my lucky stars I was so blimmin fortunate to have been born & to live in this country, at this time in its history. Where, here, we get to whinge & whine & snarl & scream abuse & hurl mud & sex toys (if we’re loopy enuf, or aggrieved enuf, & we’ve a mind to) at our governments or their representatives, & to protest about real & imaginary injustices – to our hearts’ content – without ever having to fear getting shot, or arbitrarily beaten up & arrested, at any time, for non-violent protest, by ruthless government-sponsored thugs & torturers.

And we also don’t have to worry that some well out-of-date, oppressive, misogynistic, intolerant, savage, inhumane, diabolically awful religion might alternatively determine what our laws and penalties – for example for ‘grievous offences’ like blasphemy, & homosexuality, & starving kids stealing a loaf of bread, & apostasy, or practising or converting to another deluded Abrahamic religion – or just rationality – should be.

Whatever criticisms might be justifiably levelled at the failings of our Justice system, at least critics & political activists here are subject to the law & fairness & natural justice. And those people who our goverments do sometimes try & harass – thru the Courts, via an implausibly deniable wink to the police senior hierarchy, or thru other government agencies unquestioningly doing their political masters’ bidding – they seem to always end up having their democratic rights respected & reaffirmed, compensation often being ordered, & the agencies who stepped out of line – or outside their legal boundaries to try & silence, intimidate, or punish them – being strongly censured by our Courts.

The famous philosopher, Frederick Dagg, put it thus:
“We don’t know how lucky we are, boy. We don’t know how lucky we are.”

Well … Yes, we do, Frederick. And we should never forget it. And it’s up to every one of us to make sure it stays that way.

Latest Lizzie Marvelly rant

From Gezza:


This time it’s another anti-men one – telling women she’s not anti-men.

Occasionally I’ve even been accused of perpetuating hate speech, so perhaps the free speech coalition (or whatever Brash et al are calling themselves these days now that their favourite egregiously offensive speakers have decided not to come to New Zealand) should add me to the list of undesirable rabble-rousers whose free speech rights should be defended to the death.

Although, as I signed Renae Maihi’s petition, I suspect I may fall on the wrong side of the free speech argument, namely as someone whose right to free speech defenders of free speech rather wish they didn’t have to defend.

What the hell does that last sentence even mean?

Recently, however, another accusation of hate has come to light. Apparently, I’m a man-hater. A [male] friend of my partner told her last week that I should write a column about how great men are every couple of months or so to make up for all of the columns I write that give him the impression that I hate men. A kind of “yay for the gents” puff piece to cancel out all of my shrill shrieking would apparently balance the scales.

An old friend of my father also protested to him on the golf course a few months ago that I was being a bit hard on middle-aged white men. Clearly, for some people of the white and male variety, I’ve struck a nerve.

No you haven’t, you are just hearing what a racist, ageist, sexist young bigot you are.

I can’t say I’m surprised. Over the past few years, I’ve heard – from writers much more experienced than myself – that it’s difficult to be a white man these days. “Pale Male Stale is nothing but racism, sexism and ageism wrapped in a pithy phrase,” Jason Krupp wrote in the National Business Review a few years ago.

Oops – there – don’t just take it from me.

Being “an ageing, conservative male” is an “unpardonable sin”, wrote Cameron Slater late last year. People “fair of skin and male of sex” are members of “a despised minority”, Karl du Fresne pontificated in May.

When it comes to pontificating, lady, you leave The Pope in your dust.

It appears that I have added to these gentlemen’s suffering. The least I can do is offer my heartfelt apologies. How challenging it must be to be part of a demographic that is paid more than any other across most sectors, that is better represented than any other in almost every boardroom and in Parliament, and that occupies the vast majority of positions of power in nearly every society.

Unfortunate realities aside, however, I feel that I should set the record straight. I hate inequality. I hate discrimination. I hate sexism and misogyny. But I don’t hate men.

Pull the other one. And the rest of it continues in similar vein.

So this column is for … the good blokes. The ones who support women, who stand up for justice and equality

That’s me 👍🏼

and who don’t interpret advocacy for women’s rights as man-hating.

That’s me too. 👍🏼

Equal pay doing for the same job just as well as any bloke, I’m all for. Should be that way right now. But research & stats actually show that most confident, successful, women are content to be doing what they’re doing, not working 80 hours a week, and not slugging it out in dangerous, so therefore high-paying, jobs, or STEM fields which tend to pay well because they require a high level of training & skill.

But there are plenty of women doctors, lawyers, accountants, and they aren’t sitting on their butts. They’re starting up their own businesses, and standing up for themselves, & busting the boundaries – not just being whining, anti-men bigots, like you.

https://www.nzherald.co.nz/lifestyle/news/article.cfm?c_id=6&objectid=12095666

Molyneux and Southern in Melbourne

From Gezza:


Melbourne

The Hume Highway was closed after the protesters gathered at La Mirage Reception and Convention Centre in Somerton, the venue for a talk by Lauren Southern and spilled on to the road. Officers tried to subdue the crowd with pepper spray as they clashed with mounted and riot police.

The Canadian commentator, who is touring with her fellow countryman Stefan Molyneux, is expected to share her controversial views on multiculturalism, Islam, and feminism.

Right-wing activist Neil Erikson filmed protesters before being hauled away from police. He and two other men are charged with affray and riot over an incident outside an event by controversial commentator Milo Yiannopoulos last year.

Ms Southern was expected to cause trouble, with the alt-right YouTube star making headlines since she touched down in Australia. The 23-year-old arrived in Brisbane wearing an “It’s okay to be white” T-shirt, after warning news.com.au she would cause “chaos” with her notorious brand of “free speech”.

The right-winger earlier hit the streets of Melbourne to stir up controversy, although her efforts to generate outrage ahead of her talk tonight appear to have fallen flat.

Even those who bought tickets to the first event of her Australian tour were given minimal detail about where the talk is. In a message to participants, organisers of the event thanked people for their understanding and patience about the secrecy around the location. “The fierce opposition to this event by the extreme left elements of Melbourne has been breathtaking in their determination to make it as difficult as possible for us to bring this tour here,” the message said.

Complicated measures have been introduced to keep the location of Lauren Southern’s talk secret. Source:YouTube

Security around Ms Southern’s talk is reportedly costing organisers thousands with Victoria Police reportedly sending them a $68,000 bill to pay for resources to be used at her show. An email from Victoria Police quotes the total cost as $230,000 but said police would only charge her $67,842.50, News Corp Australia reported.

After violent activists turned Melbourne streets into a war zone during a talk by right-wing speaker Milo Yiannopoulos six months ago, he was also sent a $50,000 bill to cover the heavy police presence.

The Campaign Against Racism and Fascism has organised a protest in Melbourne to “show fascistic ideas will always lose in Melbourne” against Ms Southern’s show. It called her “a notorious racist and Islamophobe”.

On Saturday she appeared on Sky News, making it clear that she was “happy to be white”. “If I were black I could say I’m proud, if I were Asian I could say I’m proud, if I were any other ethnicity I could say I’m proud because that’s how our culture is, but if I’m white and I say I’m proud the media will go nuts,” she said.

More … includes embedded video of protestors swearing, banging on, & trying to stop the bus.

–  Protester rushes stage as activists clash with police at far-right Lauren Southern’s Melbourne event


My take:

She makes a good point & is likely to be sort of correct there, on that last bit about the media “going nuts” if she wore a ” Proud to be white” T-shirt in the US, Canada & Australia. But I don’t know if that’s necessarily true of the UK or New Zealand.

I think “the media” doesn’t actually much care one way or the other that she’d wear a T-shirt saying that. This is sensationalist stuff. It’s clicks and viewers. They are more interested in stirring up & then videoing & showing & reporting on the number & type of violent & abusive “liberal” left wing & Muslim young radicals who will straight away come out, gang up, scream slogans like “Nazis!” & cause mayhem because they hate her.

Because for such people whether all or any of it is true or not doesn’t matter. They don’t like it. They don’t agree with it. They usually can’t just calmly & intelligently dispute or refute it. So they have decided the only thing to do is try & ensure that people mustn’t listen it. That people who do are demonised or scared to do it in case they and/or their property are attacked.

What Southern is doing, like Jordan Peterson is doing, is raising issues like:

  • immigration & border control failures,
  • who should decide immigration policies,
  • what numbers are manageable, and what criteria should be required,
  • whether immigrants should assimilate or not,
  • whether religious or cultural behaviours, beliefs & values of some individuals or groups fundamentally clash with those of Western Europeans & eventually may – or already do seek – to replace Western liberal European values & laws in the areas they dominate
  • what are the costs vs the benefits to the host country of different types of immigrant categories (skills, family, guest workers vs locals)

*Are the increasingly strident claims of extreme, radical, or even now mainstream feminists (whatever that word even means now) that men are suppressing women’s career development & actively or covertly preventing them gaining positions of power & responsibility, access to high-paying jobs, and just basically fundamentally unnecessary as per the famous radical lesbian feminist adage “A woman needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle” – actually even TRUE?

Increasing evidence now suggests not. And that this now-longstanding criticising & even demonising of “men” appears to be one cause of the growing incidence of confused, anxious & dysfunctional young men & women in places like the US.

As far as I can tell Southern hasn’t claimed that whites are superior to black or brown people.

She seems to saying that – in the face of now decades of constant criticism & verbal attacks on the ‘cultural domination’ of Western countries by white people (who have actually in recent decades been surprisingly ethnically, religiously & even culturally tolerant – compared to, say, the real, legalised, institutionalised, religiously-prescribed & indoctrinated patriarchal misogynism & intolerance prevalent among Muslim people in countries like Saudi Arabia, Iran, Pakistan, Indonesia etc) – she is actually Proud To Be A White European – & she thinks approved immigrants should only be those who will contribute, not cost, & will assimilate into her own country’s prevailing culture of one law for all, free speech, & otherwise complete colour blindness.

She draws attention in her movie FARMLANDS to the ongoing & unreported anti-white discrimination, & murders & attacks on white farmers in isolated communities in South Africa.

Somebody should. Mandela would.

There’s no case for moral relativism such as “ha ha it’s their turn now” because Whites segregated & controlled the place for decades before they finally, for many reasons – including international sanctions & condemnation – accepted that it was morally wrong & surrendered power to ‘democracy’. A democracy which has rapidly became astoundingly, but not entirely surprisingly, corrupt under black majority rule.

Any government practicing or advocating discrimination, dispossession without compensation, ignoring, or condoning the oppression, repression, or murder of any group who are no threat to the survival or wellbeing of another group is just wrong. Whoever does it. Whenever they do it.

Molyneux is riding the same wave as Southern. However he is also a conspiracist & in my view a generally more suspicious sort of character because he also pushes false & misleading information. But many of his messages deal with the same issues.

They are all issues which I think DO need to be frequently discussed in a free, open, fair, & still-evolving, generally harmonious, democratic society like ours and other similar countries – which want to remain that way.

Free Speech – are we for or against it?

Post from Gezza:


“OPINION: It seems I’m as Aryan as you can get, with a DNA test to prove it, but I’m less thrilled about it than Lauren Southern, the suitably blonde agitator who wasn’t allowed to speak at the Auckland Council’s Bruce Mason Centre.

The 23-year-old self-described journalist calls to mind an inane pop song once banned by the BBC, Jump Up and Down and Wave Your Knickers in the Air.

She’s white and proud and wants to kick arse about the accident of her birth, for which she has no more reason to preen than the rest of us whiteys. But boy, is she shrill, is she self-righteous, and is she in-your-face provocative.

Rosemary McLeod: The Free Speech Coalition is wasting its money.

ROSEMARY MCLEOD

Rosemary McLeod: The Free Speech Coalition is wasting its money.

I’ve taken a dislike to her. In case you wondered. Southern and fellow Canadian Stefan Molyneux are internet identities with a far-Right agenda that would have appalled Bruce Mason, a leading Kiwi playwright and sensible liberal.”

More…

… … …
As I posted the other day, Rosemary McLeod is at it – a classic liberal feminist, playing the “Nazi Aryan Maiden” card, without citing any actual evidence to back up what she appears to have heard elsewhere.

She, like the rest of us, has no idea exactly what these two were going to say, & she is appalled that Don Brash is in favour of allowing people to express “racist” views. I happen to agree with Brash on this.

My take: Molyneux is a sleazy character who, among other fad topics of appeal to the low-IQ North American conservative to far right spectrum reportedly peddles the debunked “IQ is linked to race” theory. I haven’t yet seen him doing this – but I wouldn’t be surprised if he does.

if you’ve watched a lot of his 90 -120 minute plus interminable online harangues – as I now have – after half an hour of his superciliously snide side-comments you can quickly write him off as awful to listen to, devious, a frequent distorter of facts & outright liar, whose false claims among the facts are easily disproved and dismissed. Which is what should happen.

So far I haven’t heard him directly advocating that whites are superior, although the hoary old ‘race-based IQ’ revival he is said to promote carries that obvious implication, disguised as it is with the false claim that Ashkanazi Jews are top of the high IQ list and whites are only at third from top in the pecking order.

Southern is another story. She doesn’t lie. She holds strong views about the values of Western European culture & systems & argues against people and groups who practice white racism & have cultural practices, ideas & values that conflict with or are inconsistent with them, & challenges those who allow, support, or encourage people traffickers to keep up the flow of floods of people from such countries into Western countries, where there is evidence of the real & projected adverse outcomes & impacts on the host populations & their own cultures that these sudden massive influxes create.

Both of them seem to have views also on the impact of feminism and its attendant anti-male rhetoric & influence in modern society because of the negative outcome statistics for, basically, emasculated, anxiety-ridden, lost young men – often fatherless – who have grown up indoctrinated by a female-friendly childcare & education system and are now showing up quite prominently in sociological studies apparently believing that being typically male makes them violent, dominating, evil people, & so never become young men & never get out there & realise their potential.

That, contrary to the incessant clamour of strident feminists, stats show that, in the US at least, ‘the system’ is actually now benefiting women far more than men, something which is not known and/or acknowledged by feminazis.

These are valid issues that need an airing & to be discussed in rational debate. I have never heard Southern claim anything about whites or females being superior.

In this article I think McLeod proceeds to display her own intellectual superiority blinkers. I think she rather proves their case that free speech is now actually being suppressed by such people as Rosemary who just don’t want to hear & debate this.

PRAYER FROM AN ATHEIST

Guest post from Gezza

The only way to cure Islam’s ills is to educate Muslims out of believing the Quran. To do that, you also have to educate the Jews out of believing the Torah & the Christians out of believing the Bible.

All of them derive their basis for belief from the first scribblings of unbelievable myth & bullshit in the Jewish Scriptures, & all are demonstrably false.

All of them, & all other supernatural religions, have become interwoven over centuries into the ethnic, cultural & national identities of scores of religious sects & diverse peoples throughout the globe. They have driven land grabs, wars and strife for eons. False beliefs taught to ignorant people of long bygone ages still lie at the very heart of most of the worst tensions & strife between nations & ethnic groups & cultures around the world today.

Of them all, Christianity, while influential in the development of the better aspects of Western civilisation, especially over the last century, has probably reduced the most in direct influence on Westerners, as secular morality has developed & improved on the limits of the so-called 10 commandments, & the Golden Rule. (Even the Golden Rule is reportedly actually quite common to many religions & societies around the globe, or at least between believers or members of the same group.)

Christians forget that making slaves of people from other nations is still sanctioned by God (& Jesus never countermanded Mosaic Law) in the Bible. It is time people looked at the Torah, the Bible and the Quran only as important historical Books.

The Bible played an undoubtedly important part in the development of Western Civilisation & law, but, when you put the pastor outside, clear your mind of the reinterpretations you’ve been fed by the priestly class, & simply read it plainly, end to end, it is instantly revealed, self-evidently, as merely a collection of 3rd 4th & 5th hand scribblings about historically unsupportable superstitions, myths, magic, & logical & scientific nonsense.

It is the story of a savage, jealous, vengeful, murderous, infanticidal, rape & slavery-condoning God who Christians still say – notwithstanding that he ordered and /or committed these heinous acts – MUST be good! Because he is God. And God is good. So he must have had a good reason for such horrific cruelty & immorality. This is just bizarre. Truly daft that anyone can try to rationalise it with pathetic defences about relative morality meaning it was good behaviour from Jaweh for those times, but it’s not now.

Modern, secular society Christians, as empathetic, intelligent, social, human beings whose ideas of morality have now gone well beyond the Bible’s, would NEVER willingly choose to do these horrible things to other people. With the blinkers of highly selective Christian teachings off – the Judeo-Christian God’s actions & commands are actually evil by today’s standards. Jaweh orders the Israelites to commit murder, genocide, rape, infanticide for heaven’s sake. If he came to earth today, he’d literally be in the dock for crimes against humanity!

The same, & new, maybe worse, errors, horrors, pointless, repressive, oppressive, conflicting, bloodthirsty, outdated regulations, bad science, teachings, & beliefs of superiority over others, dictated by a middle-aged Arab warlord, are set out in the Quran & Hadith that Muslims are forced by their theocratic rulers and family & social pressures to believe & take with them wherever they go.

I don’t hate these religions, per se, but I know beyond any reasonable doubt they are false & well out-of-date.

And I DO hate how the contortions & distortions of these ludicrous scripts can be twisted in the minds of gullible believers, who suspend their rationality, & listen when imams & pastors tell them these clusters of confused crap mean something totally different to what they actually say – really, only out of the instilled fear of everlasting torture if they don’t believe it, or the need of desperate or fearful people to call on some hoped-for divine universal power to help them deal with adversity in their daily lives, and give them vain hope of some vague glorious reward of everlasting life & happiness in a hereafter beyond their inevitable expiry date on this earth.

There is NO actual evidence of any such thing. You won’t be seeing your pet dog or the roast lamb you ate for lunch in Heaven either. (Well, I’m an agnostic really. I can’t absolutely guarantee that there is no more existence for our personalities beyond this earthly lifetime, but it’s such a remote possibility that the probability of our death being our complete end of existence would be well in excess of 99.99999%. And it’s an absolute certainty, in my opinion, that in the unlikely event I’m wrong, any existence beyond our earthly one would not be anything like what’s promised in any of these dreadful Holy Books.)

In my view, all children should be given a secular education. They should be taught, first, written language & mathematics, then logic & reasoning, & science, & then told to forget their preachers, & their parents’ beliefs, & be instructed to just read these Holy texts, without reinterpretation, from start to finish. If, by the end, they haven’t figured out:

“WTF? Who can seriously take this garbled rubbish recited to ancient sheep herders & camel drivers as divinely inspired instructions to humanity?”

they should then learn the history of the people who, it is claimed, wrote them, and of how they spread their religions, and warred over them.

That would, hopefully, be the end of the religions, & when their believing parents finally pass away, they could just bury them respectfully, & then just put their Holy Books on the shelves in the Great Myths & History sections of libraries, & focus on establishing or evolving the fairest & most tolerant sets of values, ethics & laws that fit their own ethnic cultures & customs, settle their border squabbles, & renew good relationships with other people & cultures who live in this world – without this bloody religious dogma continually overpowering their reason & humanity & pitting devout, deluded believers & their descendents forever against each other.

Value your separate customs of dress & hospitality, & languages, & other delineators of your cultural & national identities & borders. Live freely in the places your cultures now belong, or have belonged for centuries, & welcome visitors from different lands who respect your customs while there.

If you move to another place, adapt to their culture. If eventually, in the future, we can all meld together with common evolved values & customs & laws & behaviours, so that borders can effectively disappear, there is maybe hope for a true paradise on earth – but that is a long, long way away yet, in my view.

In the meantime, for heaven’s sake, please, read, THINK, & then throw out all the false Gods that tell you you are a special & favoured people, & that all the other gods & their deluded believers are wrong! Humanity MUST outgrow these mythical supernatural rulers if we are ever to evolve the kind of world we really want.

We need to learn to love & live the life we have to the full. It is the only one we have. We need to grow up & face this fact. It is time for us to put away these childish fairy & troll kings – & become better than them.