The Daily Blog Watch – 20/21 February 2014

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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

On the Green Blog (yes, there are two of these li’l critters), is  Key telling porkies on Working for Families?

Prime Minister John Key is trying to mislead the public of New Zealand over his history of cutting Working for Families payments to families, Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei said today.

On Radio New Zealand’s ‘Nine to Noon’ show this morning, Mr Key defended his statement that Working For Families is “communism by stealth”, saying that Working For Families had been “a system so hopeless that when you earn an extra dollar of paid employment you get to keep none of it … We spent a long time fixing that problem… we changed abatement rates”.

In fact, National changed the rules on Working For Families in 2011 to increase the abatement rate and lower the income level at which abatements kick in.

Key lied?? Well, that’s a first!

Also on that  Radio NZ: Nine To Noon – Election year interviews – John Key

TDB Recommends NewzEngine.com

The Transport Blog reports a growing  Appetite for development,

It seems there’s been a flurry of news about intensification and development over the last week or so. We’ve had Len Brown trying to kick start progress on the CRL at the same time as Precinct Properties redevelop the Downtown Shopping…

Open Parachute lobs an intellectual depth charge onto  anti-flouridation activists who indulge in Repeating bad science on fluoride,

Here is the only mention of fluoride:

“A meta-analysis of 27 cross-sectional studies of children exposed to fl uoride in drinking water, mainly from China, suggests an average IQ decrement of about seven points in children exposed to raised fluoride concentrations.44 Confounding from other substances seemed unlikely in most of these studies. Further characterisation of the dose–response association would be desirable.”

Chris Trotter on Bowalley Road brands the West as Exquisite Hypocrisy  for the West’s Response To The Ukrainian Crisis,

It is worth reiterating that these deadly attacks are directed against a head of state and a government chosen by the Ukrainian people less than four years ago in free and fair elections. The ostensible cause of the protests – the Ukrainian President’s decision to look to the Russian Federation, rather than the European Union, for desperately needed economic aid – was a perfectly legitimate political decision, no different from the decision of the US Government to join NAFTA, or our own government’s decision to sign a free trade agreement with China.
 

Can you imagine the reaction of the US Government if in 1994 the opponents of NAFTA had marched into the heart of Washington DC carrying all manner of offensive weapons, occupied the Lincoln Memorial and demanded both the abrogation of the treaty and the resignation of President Clinton? What do you think would have happened if, as barricades went up around the National Mall and clouds of black smoke from burning tyres drifted over the White House, the FBI had then released evidence showing that a number of the protest leaders had taken part in training sessions organised and funded by an agency of the Russian Government? How do you think the US media would have reacted?

Also check out Chris’s post, This Is What Clever Propaganda Looks Like.

On the Green’s Frogblog, Jan Logie reports on Protection for Migrant workers – bad legislation to address a real problem,

The Green Party absolutely believes we need to protect workers from exploitation and ensure extra protection for migrants, especially temporary migrants. The evidence we have does suggest they are vulnerable to the most extreme exploitation.

On Punishment and Compassion,  David Clendon writes,

It is simply wrong that a person should be mistreated while in the custody of the state.  We routinely deprive people of their liberty for offending, we deny them many of the rights that citizens usually enjoy.  We must not, if we profess to be a decent society founded  on respect for the rule of law, deprive people of basic human rights as defined in national and international law and conventions.

And Denise Roche writes that Changing the channel on TV waste,

We don’t want TVs in landfills because they contain hazardous and highly toxic materials like lead. But they also contain useful materials like copper, precious metals and glass, which can be recycled into other products.

Gordon Campbell on the All Blacks’ investment in rest homes,

Up until now, the feeling that rugby may be bad for your health has been pretty much limited to concerns about the sometimes cavalier attitude the code has taken towards the risk of concussion. (National MP Mike Saban has been vocal in the past about the concussion issue and rugby’s handling of it.) Yet the All Blacks endorsement of Coca Cola – at a time when there are valid concern about the links between childhood obesity and sugar drinks – is not merely a health issue, important though that may be. Kids do love the All Blacks and yes, they will seek to emulate them, including via the association with the world’s favourite caffeinated sugar drink. The Coke deal is also an interesting example of how untouchable our national icons seem to be…

So much for Individualists screaming that this is a matter of parental responsibility – when one of the biggest corporate entities is exploiting the most popular brand in this country to peddle sweetened disease and death.

*hic!*

No Right Turn presents,

As a government agency with highly intrusive powers, the GCSB is legally required to report annually on its use of those powers, specifically on how many wiretaps and computer hacks it has been performing. But last year, they lied, massively under-reporting the extent of their spying:

The GCSB lied?? Oh golly gosh, thodathunk it??

and,

Since time immemorial, National has been promising regular environmental reporting. Nick Smith ran on the platform in 2008, then failed to deliver so badly that Labour re-introduced his member’s bill on the subject in the hope of forcing him to keep his word. But now, after six years in government, National is finally keeping that promise, introducing an Environmental Reporting Bill. The core of the bill is good, requiring a “synthesis report” every three years on the whole of the environment, and regular “domain reports” on land, air, atmosphere and climate, freshwater and the marine environment. In each case, the reports will have to describe environmental pressures and impacts, as well as the state of the environment.

Scott Yorke on Imperator Fish takes an almighty swipe at this country’s incredible talent for always seeking someone to blame, No more chances for McCullum,

302 is a mighty score, but let’s not get carried away with ourselves. If McCullum had won the toss in the last test we almost certainly wouldn’t have batted first, and we probably wouldn’t have been all out cheaply in our first innings. McCullum was forced to dig deep in the second innings of the test because of his failure to win the toss. If McCullum’s triple century is a consequence of his failure as a captain, by saluting his epic score are we not rewarding failure?

Porcupine Farm takes the piss out of  Craig Foss, Reluctant Roo Wrangler

Julie on The Hand Mirror asks,  One way doors – will they keep us safe?

But what if the venue you are in when the one way door shuts isn’t safe?  Or becomes unsafe?  What if you are harassed, assaulted, have your drink spiked, abused?  If you leave that is the end of your night.  If you stay you remain at risk.  Especially if the venue isn’t interested in looking out for you.

New Zealand’s fixation on booze continues to attract our attention, it seems.

On the Standard,

Readers of The Standard have read and engaged on the campaign for forestry safety. There is now a Review underway and we need to maintain the organising momentum to ensure change is made. On 28 April is International Workers Memorial Day and we have invited the families of all workers killed since 2008….

Tracey recounts the rise and fall of the `financial genius` John Key’s pet financial hub for NZ to emulate the paragon economies that tried it. Like Ireland – the home of the jobless and deserted housing projects….

Fortunately he was somehow prevented from stuffing NZ in this way. However he did put in some legislation of dubious value to allow NZ to be used as a haven for hot money fleeing taxes…

Porirua mayor Nick Leggett has put up a couple  interesting posts about Labour’s prospects in the upcoming election in progressonline.  I think his political message is timely and true: Labour’s approach to this election cannot be “just a list of things that you’re against,” rather it should focus on what it’s for, and what it will do for New Zealanders. That could be very popular with voters….

National is now targeting David Cunliffe and his family.   Metiria Turei was attacked for living in a castle and wearing designer jackets, and now David Cunliffe is being attacked for being wealthy.  The criticisms miss the point.  There is nothing inherently wrong with being wealthy.  But there is everything wrong in setting fire to the ladder of social support after you have had the opportunity to climb it….

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Blogpost of the Day

On Local BodiesGreens’ Solar Sense and National’s Nonsense,

National have already been burnt by the reception of the Greens’ well received education policy when their own expensive education initiative received lukewarm support. Simon Bridges desperately suggested that the modest loans were somehow “magic money” and an unnecessary subsidy. Bridges incredibly didn’t believe that solar energy was necessary in New Zealand. John Key bizarrely claimed that the scheme would destabilise the current system and would cause companies to increase charges. National would rather see people dependent on the current flawed system that has seen a 22% increase in power bills over their time in office.

 

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Thought for the Day

mayor cull quote

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~ Joe Blogger,

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

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