Where was I? Hate, hate, love, hate, love, way more hate, bloody Millennials and tiny smidgens of begrudging respect.
As we spin on this tiny rock completing another circle around a medium sized sun at the arse end of the Milky Way Galaxy, these are insignificant ramblings trying to fish up some meaning for a 12 month period where nothing seemed to matter in the face of climate change while simultaneously everything managed to offend huge swathes of people you’ll never meet.
This was part 1, here is Part 2, part 3 tomorrow…
Biggest Prick in NZ Politics – Mark Mitchell
How the living baby Jesus did a multimillionaire death merchant like Mark Mitchell suddenly become the voice of morality in the National Party? Doesn’t it say something when a private mercenary is your mouthpiece for ethics?
Shouldn’t that concern anyone else?
Who will speak for justice in our Party? Why the guy smeared with blood from being a private army warlord. It’s like getting a zombie on meth to be your life coach. Mark is a a cross between Goofy, a fundamentalist bible thumper and a homicidal psychopath. That he’s National’s next great thing speaks of a dark future where mankind is locked in a doom spiral between robots and aliens – Mark would be sub-contracting out to the aliens and the robots. He’s so self righteous he calls out his own name at the point of orgasm.
Best TV Shows – American Gods, Strange Angels, Who is America, Silicon Valley Season 5, South Park Season 22 & Atlanta Season 2
While all NZ TV was just absolute shit this year (I get to SpinOff TV later in this blog, and trigger warning, I pull the trigger many, many, many times) there were some bright sparks of genuine brilliance, unfortunately all of it on Soho.
American Gods – The philosophical and cultural questions this brilliant series throws up about human beings and their relationship to greedy gods who are desperate for attention and sacrifice is just so wonderfully dark and manipulative whilst being gloriously visual. It is an honest feast for the eyes and mind. That it seems to have been missed by many is a genuine tragedy, if you have Sky – download it and watch it. If you have the internet, illegally download it and watch it. TV this clever and violent is unmissable.
Strange Angels – Take rocket science, the technological race against Nazis and American suburban Satanism from the 1930s and you have Strange Angels. Repressed homosexuality, repressed scientific knowledge and lots of satanic sex rituals all add for the fucking weirdest TV series of 2018 and I fucking love it. Amazing visuals and insane merging of technology and Satanism. The cliff hanger ending of series one has made me an addict.
Who is America – Ok, it was pretty hit and miss wasn’t it, but the Israeli self defence advisor singing gun songs with Republicans mad me laugh so hard I almost wet myself. The disbelief with how far Right wing goons were prepared to go at the merest push by Sacha Baron Cohen was terrifying television.
Silicon Valley Season 5 – I love this series so much but the highlight episode this year was when Bertram Gilfoyle’s character had a death metal scream occur every time his Bitcoin investment went up. I’ve never laughed so much. Jesus it was funny.
South Park Season 22 – After so many years, how can this crass little cartoon still provide some of the most biting social satire in the game? Season 21 with PC Principle, gentrification and whole food stores was so incredibly funny I didn’t think they could top it, but the re-emergence of Man Bear Pig (global warming) was inspired and their most recent episode looking at the evil of Amazon proves they just get stronger and better with age. If you haven’t watched in a long time, I urge you it’s well worth the time.
Atlanta Season 2 – There are few comedies where every episode is a highlight. If you aren’t a fan or you haven’t watched, you are missing the best TV being produced right now.
Blame it on the Heteronormative Patriarchy Award 2018 – The Secret National MP who had an affair with JLR for years
Let me just see if I can get this completely straight.
One of the anonymous sources for the Newsroom hit job on JLR was a married National Party MP from a socially conservative electorate who had an affair with JLR for years and years and years because of the heteronormative patriarchy?!?
She was forced to have an affair with him because of the heteronormative patriarchy???
Once upon a time we’d say, ‘it takes two to tango’, now we are asked to believe the heteronormative patriarchy forces women to have affairs with men, and they only break that up when it’s politically expedient and then they send corrosive text messages like the one above that become the catalyst for suicide attempts, but that’s not her fault because you know, the heteronormative patriarchy.
Couldn’t it just be that she’ a hypocritical arsehole?
Best Male Politician – Andrew Little
Can we all just pause and appreciate the true courage and leadership of this man? To step down and allow Jacinda to become leader showed a lack of ego and commitment to values rarely seen or appreciated in politics, but it is the incredible job he has done with everything he engages in. Be it Pike River mine re-entry, a humane approach to justice and prisons, to rebuilding relationships between the Crown and Māori, he is the unsung hero of NZ Politics and we would never have seen his capacity if he’d remained as Leader. He is everything we want our leaders to be.
Most meaningless policy – Carbon Neutral by 2050
Much has been made by the Greens that they will boldly make NZ Carbon Neutral by 2050. This is only bold if you are 7 feet tall and pick fist fights with infants. The truth is that climate change poses an existential threat to us as a species and here is what it will generate by 2030.
By 2030, over 50% of the oceans will be collapsing as bio-habitats.
By 2030, East Coast cities in the U.S. can expect to see two to three-times as many flooding incidents.
By 2030, 122million will be driven into extreme poverty as direct result of climate change.
By 2030, 100million will die as a direct consequence of climate change.
By 2030, even if the Paris Agreement is actually implemented, we will see a planet warm to 3.4 degrees by the end of this century meaning there will effectively be no future civilisation capable of surviving on a planet that warm.
2030, the number of extremely hot days — classified as maximum temperatures of more than 35C — are tipped to climb in all capital cities.
But don’t fret folks, the Greens intend to make us carbon neutral 20 years after this carnage.
The Greens have all the tactical power of moss and the radical energy of a tofu.
Best Female Politician – Tracey Martin
She continues to be one of the hardest working MPs in Parliament. Her work behind the scenes on major policy is never appreciated and she simply doesn’t get any of the respect she deserves. Her work reforming Oranga Tamariki, the Children’s Ministry and more resources for children with special needs doesn’t get the attention it deserves.
Best on screen duo – Anika Moa & Hilary Barry (runner ups – Jack Tame & Haley Holt)
Anika and Hilary on screen together is the funniest thing in NZ. I often close my eyes and wonder how the hell this is going down in the deepest whitest parts of the South Island, whether the entire town goes still and quiet as locals watch the screen in open mouthed disbelief as a tattooed Māori lesbian teams up with an urban white feminist to tell it like it is. I just fucking love it. The runner up is Jack and Haley whom I’ve really warmed to. They are like clever siblings constantly squabbling at a rained in Summer batch. Sure sometimes you want to shoot them both, but there are some gems amongst banter.
Most Useless Minister – Eugenie Sage
This year the Greens announced some meaningless ‘water test’ to stop foreigners buying land for water exploitation, but this was just back peddling to try and gloss over Minister Sage’s bizarre decision to allow a Chinese company to steal 1.1billion litres of fresh water EVERY SINGLE YEAR.
The truth is that Minister Sage is either deeply confused over the power she has as a Minister OR she has been utterly owned by the Ministry and is now a puppet for their interests and not the Greens.
Minister Sage declares that she had no choice but to allow a Chinese company steal 1.1Billion litres of fresh water each year because the law only asks for economic benefits to be considered when allowing this theft to occur.
Here is the truly depressing part of Minister Sage’s confusion. Yes the Overseas Invest Act asks for a Minister to only consider economic benefits when stealing fresh water, (BUT and here is the but) the pitiful economic benefits for allowing this Chinese company to steal 1.1billion litres of water each year is a mere 15 jobs a year for 4 years.
You heard me right folks, this entire fiasco is creating a mere 60 jobs over 4 years. Minister Sage could have looked at that pitiful amount of employment and decide quite rightfully atet 60 jobs for 4.4billion litres of fresh water is not an economic benefit at all.
That Minister Sage had no idea that the above calculation was a legitimate response is depressing. Can someone pease explain her job to her?
Worst Opposition MP Award 2018 – Simeon Brown
When he wasn’t making submissions against the Marriage Equality Act, Simeon Brown is the National Party shit stain who was trying to pass laws that will make Synthetic Cannabis Class A.
I’ve detailed why making Synthetic Cannabis Class A will only make things worse, and how this entire fiasco is really the fault of the politicians in the first place…
The Parliament legalised synthetics, didn’t have the courage to push through the testing regimes that would be acceptable, this created a wild west situation with no safety standards being enforced, public backlash was enormous, Parliament revoked legalisation and sent the industry underground where it is killing 50 people a year.
…but Simeon has doubled down on his shit stain status and bewilderingly attacked the Drug Foundation for trying to provide advice to stop the massive death rate that synthetics are causing…
… so let’s get this straight.
Not only is Simeon part of a group of people who forced synthetics underground and are responsible for the current spike in deaths, he was also pushing for legislation that will only make the situation far worse AND he is now slagging off the only group who are desperately trying to stop the deaths that Politicians are responsible for.
The only thing more awful than all of this is that bloody Labour picked up the bullshit idea and passed it themselves!
Allah, please make their deaths slow and painful.
Simeon Brown is the type of braindead banjo twanging chinless wonder that gives inbreeding a bad name. His DNA is so weak, he’s banned from eating sliced bread just in case the yeast overcomes his immune system. He’s the political equivalence of fart in an elevator.
Award for Political incompetence 2018 – Corrections
I despise Corrections, I really do.
The joy with which they seem to relish making prisoners in their care suffer rivals only the sadism of WINZ staff or the ‘just following orders’ spite of Housing NZ during the meth hysteria, but to truly want to put your fist through the wall in blind frustration at the needlessly cruel counter productive fuckwittery of Corrections, consider why there has been such a huge and sudden reduction in the prisoner population.
After five years of continually climbing, the number of prisoners is finally dropping
The prison population has dipped below 10,000 for the first time in more than two years.
Since 1987, the number of people locked up had tripled – a result of successive tough law-and-order policies. Politicians have been slow to soften their stance, and change those laws, even though the system was creaking under the pressure.
So the milestone – achieved quietly on Thursday with 9920 inmates behind bars – is the result of an intensive, internal effort by the Department of Corrections.
Looks good eh, 1000 prisoners suddenly not in prison, wow.
So, how did that happen again?
Two fronts, bail and parole.
The tough on law bullshit rhetoric of the National Party changed the bail conditions in 2013 and required prisoners to apply for ebail in writing, but the problem the National Party and Corrections didn’t anticipate was that 70% of prisoners are illiterate so they couldn’t actually write the fucking letters to apply for the bail!
No one seemed to notice this until the prison population bloated to unprecedented levels and after scratching their heads for a bit, suddenly realised (once Labour got in) that with most prisoners being too illiterate to write letters for bail, they in fact needed to provide services to help the prisoners write the bail application letters.
I know you will be shaking your head in utter disbelief at the insanity of that, but this is one of the actual reasons the prison population is shrinking, and why it needlessly bloated.
The other reason the prison population is shrinking (and needlessly bloated) was the parole situation.
Parole won’t be granted if the prisoners haven’t completed rehabilitation programs, and you guessed it, the fucking prisons wren’t providing the rehabilitation programmes.
Prisoners can be released after a third of their sentence IF they complete these programs, but because corrections weren’t providing them, prisoners ended up doing their entire sentence.
That’s men, locked up 20 hours a day for years on end with no rehabilitation then being released with no social skills back into a community that hates them with bugger all support and then we wonder why such huge numbers reoffend within 2 years of being released.
What was National’s response when they realised they had inadvertently started producing men more damaged coming out than when they went in? Why the National Government passed a law allowing for Corrections to endlessly monitor these men and keep them in housing permanently based on prison land.
Endless imprisonment past the sentence because the original time in prison had been so damaging an experience.
Over 20 years the cost of our prisons has jumped from $382 million a year to $1.3 billion a year.
This needless suffering and cost to let NZers feel the taste of vengeance speaks ill of us as a tiny people with an insatiable thirst for moralistic outrage.
So Fuck Corrections, they are a pus pit of counter productive social policy, and the fact they allowed so many men and woman to needlessly rot in prison for 5 years – that’s 5000 people at $100 000 each per year that’s half a billion fucking dollars needlessly spent keeping people inside a prison system that only damaged them further.
That Corrections now want a pat on the back for helping Prisoners who were functionally illiterate fill in the forms to get them out is an audacity – heads should fucking roll for this human collateral damage they have sanctioned, but of course this is the Public Service, and no one is ever held accountable.
Award for Ministry that has best conned its Minister – WINZ
Carol from WINZ will see you now.
No other Ministry has managed to utterly own their Minister quite like WINZ has. The announcement that the new Government are 20% less cruel than National was embarrassingly heralded like a mighty win…
Benefit suspensions drop after new policy
The number of people whose benefits are suspended or cancelled each day has dropped by more than a fifth in just a matter of weeks, the Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni says.
…on the same day it was announced that IRD and WINZ have screwed up and are now charging beneficiaries hundreds, if not thousands of dollars we got this pitiful claim that the toxic culture of WINZ has somehow been ‘modified’…
Parents who have had Family Tax Credit payments administered by Work and Income are now receiving letters from the Inland Revenue Department demanding re-payment of alleged debts arising from errors made by Work and Income.
Kirstie, a woman interviewed by Newshub (see 6.00pm TV3 News, Tuesday 26 June) has received a letter from IRD stating, “Our records show we haven’t received payment for your working for Families Tax Credits in full” and that this dates back to March 2014. IRD has told Kirstie she owes them $568.18 and she is being charged interest on this amount.
Another woman has received a letter from IRD stating she owes IRD over $7000.
…here’s the Minister touring her toxic empire…
…if only this Government could protect the users of welfare services as much as they do the staff of these services.
Holding up a pitiful 20% reduction on a policy of spite and cruelty without any reflection on the 20% that have been wrongfully kicked off welfare that number must then represent on the same day another atrocity from IRD & WINZ towards beneficiaries has just been exposed right after the horror the meth hysteria perpetrated against Housing NZ tenants IS NOT A REASON TO CELEBRATE!
Labour then went on to announce that they will spend $2.5million to make WINZ offices warm and fucking friendly…
All of Work and Income’s service centres will undergo a $2.5m transformation from cold, clinical waiting rooms into colourful, well-furnished spaces as part of the Government’s plan to make the welfare system “kinder” and less punitive.
The renovation of the 126 centres comes after the more welcoming approach was trialled at four service centres around the North Island.
“It’s the right thing to do,” said Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni.
“We don’t want to be pushing people into further hardship or causing unnecessary stress and anxiety in people’s lives because we’re making it difficult for them to access something that they are actually eligible for.”
…YAY! When the sadistic WINZ staff member (who seems to get off on the power they have over weak and vulnerable people) kicks you in the guts, turns down your welfare and spies through Facebook to see if you you are in a relationship, it’ll all happen in a warm and friendly environment.
Wokedom at it’s most hollow and insincere.
I’m sure most beneficiaries would be more than happy to swim through shark infested pools and walk over broken glass to just see a WINZ staff member who wasn’t looking to catch them out and use spite to denigrate and shame their vulnerability. Look at the latest survey…
Survey shows four out of five people had negative experiences at WINZ
A new survey has shown that four out of five people have had negative experiences at Work and Income New Zealand (WINZ).
The survey, conducted by the Child Poverty Action Group (CPAG) and ActionStation, questioned 267 people on their perspectives, insights and experiences of the welfare system.
The findings included an overwhelming trend of people having negative experiences with WINZ and a desperate lack of income to afford basic needs.
One of the key findings was that 84 per cent of people said they did not currently receive enough income to live with dignity and participate fully in the community.
…punishing people who don’t have enough already seems like the sort of social policy Mordor implements.
The simple naked truth is that beneficiaries don’t have enough to live on and making them hungry, cold and vulnerable only creates more costly social harm than any good.
Best Opposition MP – Chris Finlayson
I respected Chris, I didn’t always agree with him, but I respected him. He had a fierce intelligence and a brutal ability to eviscerate his political enemies that was more at home on a wildlife documentary on the hunting techniques of large carnivores. He loved debate with as much passion as great white sharks love blood, he was a towering figure on the Right and his stepping down from Parliament leaves an enormous intellectual vacuum that Gerry Brownlee is in danger of tripping into and collapsing like a neutron star.
No. Stop that now Political Award 2018 – David Seymour
Brothers and Sisters, the whitest moment in NZ history occurred in 2018. This was so white it was sea salt combined with goat yoga combined with Don Brash combined with organic farmer markets combined with a Tesla Roadster combined with Nickelback.
We were all there. We all saw it. We can’t unsee it.
I stopped dreaming in colour after this.
Part 3 tomorrow