The Daily Blog Watch Friday 9 August

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Today’s Daily Blog Watch Round-Up of matters that have attracted the attention, assessments, and articulations of this country’s leading bloggers and on-line satirists…

NZ Left Blogosphere

The Civilian wishes Dear Leader a happy, happy, joy, joy,  birthday, and reports that John Key asks media to ‘lay off’ because it’s his birthday

Prime Minister John Key this morning reminded reporters that they must refrain from raising any tough issues today as it is his birthday.

Key, who exited his mother’s uterus 52 years ago, said that there was an unwritten rule that the media must “lay off” the Prime Minister on his or her birthday.

Pundit’s Tim Watkin blogs on  Tiwai Pt – just more expedience and poor dealing and asks,

The Tiwai Point subsidy buys time, but ultimately is just the latest in a series of deals by governments of different strips that sees the taxpayers stumping up for political reasons. Will it ever end?

The Nats had to be be dragged kicking and screaming to providing meals in schools for hungry children.

TDB Recommends NewzEngine.com

But $30 for a multi-national corporation? No problem.

On Kiwiploitico, Pablo presents a Note to John Key: Zaoui was innocent. It seems that Key’s terrorist bogeymen aren’t enouigh to scare the population witless,

Some time ago it was Jon Stephenson and Nicky Hagar who got the smear treatment over their coverage of NZDF, SIS and GCSB activities in Afghanistan, with Key dismissing them as liars and conspiracy theorists. Now he has threatened the Human Rights Commission because of its opposition to the GCSB and TICS Bills and dismissed the Law Society’s objections as politically motivated.

On Imperator Fish, Scott Yorke reveals that our Relationship with China in meltdown after PM’s calculator breaks…!

“I lost everything. All five numerals disappeared in an instant. I then checked the back of the calculator and it said ‘Made in China.’”

Key said he had ordered an immediate investigation by his office into the quality of Chinese-made goods.

On Hot Topic, Bryan Walker voices criticism  that, in Not telling it like it is  media seems reluctant to face up to climate crisis,

The news media, with some outstanding exceptions, has monumentally failed to communicate to the public the magnitude of the threat of climate change to human society. Depressed, I tried recently submitting an opinion piece to the Herald dialogue pages on the subject. It was rejected. It’s hardly the sort of thing that needs writing for Hot Topic readers, but there may be interest in seeing what the Herald turns down. And it’s not because they were besieged by material: there were a couple of obvious fillers from overseas newspapers to occupy the space in the same week.

Fightback! presents a  Queer Avengers press release: Solidarity action with Russia’s LGBTI movement, calling for a boycott of the Soviet Russian Winter Olympic next year. Read the piece and find out why.

On Bowalley Road, Chris trotter tries Removing The Blinkers Of Free-Market Devotion, and paints a picture of what China expects from New Zealand. And here’s a clue, chums; it ain’t free market neo-liberalism.

The Green Party’s Frogblog has Mojo Mathers looking at Disability issues and the media, writing that “analysis of the stories showed that disabled people are often portrayed as either pitiful victims or super-beings“.

The Auckland Transport Blog has Guest Author Aaron Schiff  Thinking seriously about the future of Auckland’s port, and questions whether the port really needs expansion – or better utilisation of existing facilities.  And John Polkinghorne, presents info on Hydrogen Cars.

Frankly Speaking pokes the borax at Some more repetitive bene-bashing along with  a reply

More brilliant insights and analysis from  Gordon Campbell on the smelter deal, Fonterra and Iran,

Well, it does seem that about $30 million is the kind of pocket money that the government has readily at hand to throw at foreign corporates – at Warners over The Hobbit, and now at Rio Tinto over the Tiwai Point aluminium smelter. One would love to know how the size of these handouts – yes, this is corporate welfarism – are calculated. A $30 million subsidy seem to be about ten times the amount of say, the size of the biggest grants that our scientists can access, after they have been required to jump through innumerable hoops for months on end. But that’s only to do stuff that might be of social benefit. This deal is about delivering a political benefit (i.e. keeping the asset sale of Meridian Energy on track) so hey… the sky’s the limit.

No Right Turn has Savant casting a jaundiced eye on the following,

What matters to National

Its hard to find a better illustration of what matters to National. They don’t care about jobs. They don’t care about ordinary people. All they care about is the rich. And they’re willing to shovel public money at them, while letting kiwi kids go sick and hungry.

The old boy network in action

We know National doesn’t care about women, but what does that mean in practice? Here’s an example: since taking office in 2008, National has purged almost 100 women from state sector boards…

The old boy network in action

We know National doesn’t care about women, but what does that mean in practice? Here’s an example: since taking office in 2008, National has purged almost 100 women from state sector boards…

NSA spies on all email entering the US

And its worth pointing out; John key’s spy bill would let the GCSB do that here, and to emails sent within New Zealand. Mention Ahmed Zaoui or “GCSB budget cuts” in an email, and you’ll end up on their database. That’s the New Zealand John key is building for us…

And more More scaremongering from Key

Meanwhile, The Standard offers more excellent analysis of the days’ headlines…

Key called again on bullying tactics 

John Key is a bully who uses the powers of his office inappropriately. Every now and then someone calls him on it – Mike Joy, Jon Stephenson, Andrea Vance and Bradley Ambrose being examples. Now it is the turn of Law Society member Rodney Harrison QC to stand up…

Fonterra scandal and deregulation

Very early on in the Fonterra scandal there was speculation as to whether the cause of the contamination would be shown to be a product of deregulation. Sure enough, Stuff’s Pattrick Smellie makes a good case…

Market not impressed with $30 Million payout writes,

Yesterday John Key gave $30 Million of tax payer’s money to Rio Tinto in order to prop up its electricity deal with Meridian – and thus to prop up his privatisation ideology. (I note in passing that Rio Tinto just posted a 6 monthly profit of $4.2bn, but I guess that every little bit helps).

Work,  its precarious – Helen Kelly writes,

The Governments attack on workers pay seems even more nasty given the stats released this week that show wages stagnating as prices increase especially those prices that workers spend their money on – housing, power, food etc. But the changes to the ERA going through the house will also increase insecurity…

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From the Daily Blog

Opposition parties work together on “orphan drugs” (part wha) –  Frank Macskasy writes,

If Minister Hutchison was invoking the ghost of Bill Birch, known for his extremist monetarist views, then he had come to the wrong place. This was not a Chamber of Commerce or NZ Initiative (formerly the NZ Business Roundtable) business lunch. He was addressing desperate people who were seeking answers and solutions to life-threatening diseases – not hearing that the purse-strings were being closed by an acolyte of a past Finance Minister.

Good to see Labour, the Greens and NZ First (?) fronting on this issue.

It’s time: Free Teina Pora –  Martyn Bradbury  writes,

To listen to Judith Collins shrug and say that her hands are tied in light of how involved she has become over the Bain compensation case is a joke looking for a punch line.

Justice requires leadership when it has got it wrong, no one wants to admit that they got this wrong because the admission would open a large can of worms. How often have the NZ Police pulled these tactics, how many innocent people do we have in prison and why have we allowed the voices of anger and fear to dominate crime and punishment to the level where we don’t actually give a damn if the not guilty are locked up with the guilty.

Judith Collins is the one National Minister who really scares me. There is something malevolent in her persona.

Coalition governments and real change – Mike Treen  writes,

The problem for a genuinely radical party is that it only has minority support and cannot impose any significant policy change on a party committed to the existing system. So long as that system is based on serving the 1% them only small and relatively minor progressive changes are achievable. That was the case for the Alliance which achieved the establishment of Kiwibank and Paid Parental Leave and some labour law reforms despite significant opposition from elements in the Labour Party at the time. But these changes weren’t enough to significantly change the position of working people in the country. They weren’t enough to give people hope that unemployment could be eliminated, inequality radically reduced, democratic control exerted over the key sectors of the economy.

Mike’s pieces blowws apart the myth that small parties are the “tail wagging the dog”. Quite the opposite – the “dog” absorbs the tail and makes it it’s own appendage.

Rachel Smalley leaving Firstline? Noooooooooooooo! –  Martyn Bradbury writes,

It seems the razor blades are out at TV3 and the first thing they are going to do is kill off quality morning news and replace it with a shaggy dog version of blah to compete with the clowns on Breakfast TV at TVNZ.

So we lose Rachel, she’s moving to the willfully ignorant ZB AND Firstline is to be dumbed down.

And this weeks’ Citizen A!

Citizen A with Chris Trotter & Selwyn Manning

Screen Shot 2013-08-09 at 5.32.20 AM

Citizen A with Chris Trotter & Selwyn Manning: Fonterra, GCSB & Teina Pora

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Blogpost of the Day

The Jackal writes that  Democracy dying under Key, as the PM has taken to  the Law Society in a Muldoonist attack.  Jackal writes,

But what is of perhaps more consequence is that the general public didn’t have a chance to vote in the general election for or against this stupid legislation, which makes all the rushing through of such unpopular policy entirely undemocratic!

National, Act and United Future have lost the debate and instead of being childish about it they should just accept that there is no mandate for them to pass this unpopular legislation, legislation that arguably breaches international laws.

What was that about Key being like Muldoon, as Russell Norman said, a while back?

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Direct Actions

By 16 August

Are you one of the 70,000 who just got un-enrolled?

The Electoral Commission have just had to remove 70,000 New Zealanders from the electoral roll, after the election packs they sent out for the local body elections later in the year were returned, saying ‘gone – no forwarding address’. This was part of the checks to make sure that everyone who’s eligible is correctly enrolled to vote.

This means that there’s 70,000 people out there who have moved house but may not know even realise that they won’t be able to vote at the election.

If you think you might be included in this number, don’t despair! You’ve still got time to re-enrol in time to vote at the local body elections this year. Just head to www.elections.org.nz, freetext your name to 3676, call 0800 36 76 56 or go to any PostShop by August 16th.

Hat-tip: Frogblog

19 August

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By 22 August

Submit!

The Commerce Committee has called for submissions on the New Zealand International Convention Centre Bill (AKA the crony convention-centre bill). You can submit directly via the link above, or by sending two copies to

Commerce Committee Secretariat
Parliament Buildings
Wellington
Submissions are due by Thursday, 22 August 2013. Topics to raise: the unconstitutionality of the bill purporting to bind future Parliaments to compensate SkyCity of there is a change of government (and of policy); the anti-freedom of speech clause in the deal and its incompatibility with the Bill of Rights Act. While the latter isn’t actually in the bill, criticism by the committee could see it removed from the deal, or make a future BORA case against its exercise substantially easier.

 

Hat-tip: No Right Turn

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Thought for the Day

Bertolt Brecht

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~ Joe Blogger,

“The Daily Blog Watch” Editor, Imbiber of Fine Sugary Drinks,  & moa-whisperer

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~oo~