The Daily Blog Open Mic Monday 27th April 2015




Announce protest actions, general chit chat or give your opinion on issues we haven’t covered for the day.

Moderation rules are more lenient for this section, but try and play nicely.


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  1. A few weeks ago, the Electoral Commission issued a report on the 2014 General Election. It didn’t seem to attract much comment at the time but it had a few important points.
    The most important was that although, administratively, the whole process went well enough, turnout was below what was expected (or hoped) and that new ideas were necessary to reverse the declining turnout at our elections.
    However, little in the way of suggestions was given to how this can best be tackled.
    My interpretation is that the Electoral Commission is being increasingly hamstrung by the government. The National Party traditionally does best in the poorest turnouts and thus have little real incentive to give the Electoral Commission more funding so they can do the job properly.
    Although some will disagree with me, I do believe the EC does its best to be impartial and neutral, it is just that they are not given sufficient resources to do everything asked and expected of them so they have to cut corners and this plays into National’s hands.
    The full report is available on the elections NZ website

    • I concur with you, Mike. The EC does the best it can under the circumstances. Considering how National ignored the recommendations of the Commission in it’s MMP inquiry, it’s obvious that this government has little faith or support for increased democracy. Now, if the EC had recommended increasing State surveillance powers or curtailing worker’s right – that legislation would’ve passed in 48 hours.

      • agreed this government has a very cynical attitude to New Zealand democracy and human rights

        … and it is not nurturing of young New Zealanders’ spirit and dreams…hence our high suicide rate…especially males 18 to 25 and Maori

        …young NZers are made to feel their political opinions make no difference….they are living in a “dog- eat- dog” world …and a “survival of the fittest” world …where all the cards are stacked against them

        …overseas immigrants or investors or foreign students with money have more rights than they do to partake in tertiary education or own property …increasingly young NZers are saddled with huge debts for what was once considered their heritage and rights

        ….young New Zealanders are seeing their dreams of participating in New Zealand….tertiary education and owning their own house and property housing as being impossible

  2. German theatre director Uta Plate wasn’t prepared for the hopelessness many young people in New Zealand told her they were feeling

    She’s worked with marginalised young people around the world – including asylum-seekers, children in care and prisoners for 20 years. But German theatre director Uta Plate wasn’t prepared for the hopelessness many young people in New Zealand told her they were feeling. Uta’s been working with drama students at Toi Whakaari in Wellington and taken workshops around the country as the Goethe-Institut New Zealand 2015 Artist in Residence.

  3. ‘The Kiev regime’

    “Ukraine’s is a complex and a multilevel tragedy – as the economy continues to collapse, the Kiev leadership is hell-bent on destroying civil liberties and eliminating dissent. All awhile Washington and its European allies remain largely silent. And the lack of credible Western media coverage is part of the problem….

    CrossTalking with James Jatras, Mark Sleboda and Domitilla Sagramoso.

  4. How disproportionate is this?

    Whether or not you’re for legalisation of Cannabis; surely this can only be viewed as an utter travesty.
    A 26 month sentence and a 28 month sentence to Cannabis law reform activists for offenses relating to Cannabis.

    On the other hand; a 22 month sentence for a POLICE OFFICER who attempted to manipulate SIX barely legal teenage girls into keeping quiet about the fact that he had sexually assaulted them.

    What makes this even worse, is that Dakta Green and Gizella Van Trigt were not granted bail.
    The judge’s reasoning was that “it would not be in the public interest” to grant bail to either activist, whilst they were waiting for their cases to be heard in court.

    Denial of bail is almost exclusively reserved for those who are considered a risk to their own safety, or the safety of others.
    In some cases bail is also denied to those who do not have a fixed abode.
    Clearly, ‘Dakta’ and ‘Gizi’ do not fall under any of these categories.
    Adam Dunnett however, was released on bail until his conviction.

    What makes it worse still is that any sentence under 24 months allows for the offender to be released without conditions, on good behaviour; half way through their sentence.
    Dakta Green and Gizella Von Trigt do not have that luxury.
    They are also ineligible for early release with parole conditions as neither admit to any wrongdoing.

    Yes, they have broken the law.
    The illegal status of Cannabis is not something which I agree with, but regardless of that; I can understand them being punished.
    The law is after all, the law.

    But here’s the thing. The crimes for which ‘Gizi’ and ‘Dakta’ have been convicted must, by any form of reasonable logic; be assumed to be victimless.
    There is no evidence to suggest that either activist has done harm; physical or otherwise, to any other person in the process of their offending.

    Adam Dunnett however, did not commit a victimless crime.
    His victims were six vulnerable young women and their families; not to mention the rest of the Napier Police; who have borne, and still bare the brunt of abuse from many people who are quite rightly outraged at the prospect of a person who is supposed to be among the most trusted in our society, manipulating and sexually assaulting these poor young women.

    As stated earlier, a sentence of under 24 months allows for the offender to be released without conditions, on good behaviour; half way through their sentence.

    Adam Dunnett was convicted in May 2014.
    He is now a free man.

    Regardless of your views on Cannabis; any rational person should be absolutely outraged at such a disproportionate level of punishment being handed down to ‘Dakta’ and ‘Gizi’, when that punishment is stacked up against that which was handed down to a perverted scumbag like Adam Dunnett.

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