The Daily Blog Open Mic – Saturday – 29th February 2020


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.

EDITORS NOTE: – By the way, here’s a list of shit that will get your comment dumped. Sexist language, homophobic language, racist language, anti-muslim hate, transphobic language, Chemtrails, 9/11 truthers, climate deniers, anti-fluoride fanatics, anti-vaxxer lunatics and ANYONE that links to fucking infowar.


  1. Fantastic news for little old Opotiki: Scoop Opotiki Harbour Funding

    This poor little town has been left in the dumps for decades. Hopefully now that can all turn around. And their fresh-off-the boat fish at Ocean Seafoods is the best ever, whether fresh, smoked or hot with great chippies 🙂

    (Clearly I’m not quite vegan yet – heh 🙂

    • Arrr yeah what ever.

      They needed government help to to increase capacity because what they had couldn’t handle the metric tons the aquataculture sector wants to produce. Iwi investment strategy is just way to conservative, now they miss out.

  2. Great news for Bernie: He has double the support of his closest rival in California, according to the latest poll. And if the poll holds up he “would win over 10% of the delegates he needs to clinch the nomination.”

    Sen. Bernie Sanders is leading his Democratic presidential opponents by a formidable 17 percentage points in California and is on track to win more than half of the state’s 415 pledged delegates in the March 3 primary contest.

    That’s according to a Los Angeles Times/U.C. Berkeley poll released Friday, just four days ahead of Super Tuesday. The survey showed Sanders at the top of the Democratic field with 34% support, a two-to-one lead over Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), who polled in a distant second at 17%.

    Billionaire businessman Michael Bloomberg placed in third at 12%, followed by Pete Buttigieg at 11% and former Vice President Joe Biden at 8%. Full article at this CommonDreams link

  3. Unbelievable case, including killing of two politicians who tried to defend her!

    “Bibi’s case outraged Christians around the world and fanned divisions inside mainly Muslim Pakistan. The former farm worker was sentenced to death in 2010 after Muslim labourers working with her in the fields refused to share their water because she was Christian.

    An argument broke out and one woman went to a local cleric to accuse Bibi of committing blasphemy against the prophet Muhammad. Two Pakistani politicians were later killed for publicly supporting her and criticising the country’s draconian blasphemy laws.

    Pakistan’s supreme court overturned the conviction in October 2018, sparking violent protests in the country and calls for the judges in the case to be killed. The violence was led by the Islamic group Tehreek-e-Labbaik.”

  4. Neither rain nor fears of coronavirus were able to keep around 15,000 people away from the Bristol Youth Strike 4 Climate, where Greta spoke to them.

    “Activism works so I’m telling you to act,” she said. “We are being betrayed by those in power.”
    “Our leaders behave like children so it falls to us to be the adults in the room. They are failing us but we will not back down,” Greta told the crowds.

    “It should not be this way but we have to tell the uncomfortable truth. They sweep their mess under the rug and ask children to clean up for them.

    “This emergency is being completely ignored by the politicians, the media and those in power. Basically, nothing is being done to halt this crisis despite all the beautiful words and promises from our elected officials.

    “So what did you do during this crucial time? I will not be silenced when the world is on fire.”
    More at this bbc link

  5. Nick Smith standing for moderation again on Climate Change (tailored to suit the numerous oldies in Nelson who don’t want to die, but are ambivalent about getting stuck in to do their bit for the coming young ones while they are fit enough and compos mentis.)
    30 January 2020 by Skara Bonny “Climate change is a real problem, but I am not in the apocalypse camp.”
    He said that greenhouse gas emissions had over the past 100 years increased global temperatures by 0.7 degrees and increased sea levels by 19cm, but “these numbers are not particularly scary”…

    But scientist says he’s wrong. And what a good idea to meet about 11 am in the town square and have a conga line every day, with a ditty that we can dance and chant to ‘He’s wrong, he’s wrong’ etc. And then sell bags of Nick’s Fudge lampooning the latest half-masticated idea that he has fudged for the benefit of his syrupy supporters.
    Climate Change Commission Committee member and climate scientist Victoria University Professor James Renwick said it was “not true” that the temperature had only raised by 0.7 degrees in 100 years, and the global average rise in temperature was now over one degree, at about 1.1 degrees.
    He also said the important context for the change was how much even an apparently small change in global temperature could make.
    “A whole degree of warming over that period of time is very large. The difference between the sort of weather we’ve got now and the depths of the last ice-age is only about 5 or 6 degrees globally. So one degree of warming is about a sixth of the difference between ice-age and not-ice-age; it’s a huge number.”
    He said temperatures now were “the warmest they’ve been for well over a thousand years”.

  6. Green James Shaw pleased to celebrate that councils are active – Nelson now.
    Shaw was in the region to launch the Nelson-Tasman Climate Forum, designed to unite local and central government leaders with local climate activists and help guide a community-led plan to tackle climate change.
    Its charter outlines goals for members to work with urgency, to rapidly reduce human contribution to global warming and to protect communities against its adverse impacts.

    The forum was established with help from a $30,000 grant from the Nelson City Council, after it was among the first local authorities to declare a climate emergency last year. It would be a starting point for the creation of a draft regional climate strategy aimed at identifying a vision and priorities for action.

    Perhaps we can have a competitive approach. We have done this says Council A, now we call on others to do as well or better.

  7. Okay let’s look at some market truisms:

    * The Stock Market and the economy are NOT the same thing
    * China’s GDP 6%-7% per annum yet stock market at 2005 levels
    * periods of low economic growth and periods of high economic growth can associated with different regimes.
    * Weak economic growth = weak stock markets, misconception perpetuated by commentators who don’t know any better.
    * Historical Correlation does not equal guaranteed scenario’s or rates of return.

    So first of all y’all don’t know what a Universal Basic Income (UBI) is. This narrative that Weka is trying to push is you don’t know what it is because disabled people face ruin. There is definitely a slow down in economics (I don’t deny that) but a UBI and the economy is not the same thing. China is a great example of this, so China grows at 6-7% but GDP has been stuck at 2005 levels for the last 15 years. So you can see here there’s absolutely no link between economic growth and the fortunes of the Chinese peope.

    So there are different things that could effect a UBI and this idea that weak economics automatically equals benefit rate increases is just a bit of a misconception that is perpetuated by charlatan educators or people who just don’t know any better. There is historical correlation there and correlation is very high but that would not equal a UBI or returns either. Nothing is 100% or a one for one correlation. So for every unit of wealth there is at least one unit of inequality everyone is willing to put up with.

    So if the price for labour is not actually one for one correlated with the economy then what actually moves the labour price? Definitely when the economy heads down its all about money. Yes bad economics can lead to a vacuum of money, of course that can happen, that’s what happened during the financial meltdown of 08. But it’s all about money so if money comes out of the economy in the middle of all time highs then there will be potentially a flash crash or some sort of economic crash. So it happens all the time and money is definitely the most important thing.

    Now the stock markets is an important thing, just think of all that retirement money that goes into it with pension contributions going in every month for the last 60 years. Now all that money goes into the New Zealand economy so when we hear these fucken nobodies saying we should lower contributions and raise the retirement age they are actually pulling money out of the economy.

    But other variables effect the economy so if investors are paying for 40x earnings outside of New Zealand and 20x earnings for New Zealand companies that are in the same sectors then of course money is going to come out of New Zealand WHEN retirement money is pulled from New Zealand markets.

    So stuff that happens outside of New Zealand can make the NZ economy move and the point that I’m trying to get across is that a UBI is not an economic tool or a post apocalypse tool it’s a very complex tool with multiple different time frames and different people with different ambitions and they’ve got different mandates and constraints and different knowledge and different expectations.

    So logically it makes absolutely no sense to simplify a UBI on whether or not disabled people are going to suffer or not simply because the economy is weak so benefit rates must go up ect. Having that approach is far to one dimensional and frankly it’s totally absurd.

    In terms of what pulls a UBI into the economy news headlines only move the markets a short amount in the short term and investors of all types buying and selling on the stock markets really only have a small impact on the stock markets. It used to have a large impact and it used to be talked about a lot if a buyer for example stepped into a large stock or a large seller it used to be talked about a lot but these days that just doesn’t happen because there is so much more money in the economy and in I ndex-futures, electronically traded funds and other index products and that just dwarfs everything else. So in this sense we have to ask the question well why is The Standard just so full of noise?

    And well to answer that question is conflict of interest. So there narrative is keep the wheels turning, keep the system trading, raise benefit rates. Keep the money flowing, keep the money in public hands. Keep the money out of the 1% hands am I correct?

    So as an intro into whether or not the New Zealand economy is going to collapse leading onto a UBI you have to really understand why there is a backdrop of noise and why there are these false economic narratives largely pushed by people Weka, LPrint and Micky Savage who just don’t know. And why are they always noisy about things that never even happen. And really the focus shouldn’t be on economics or the disabled it should just be focused on the money, the money will always lead you to the truth.

    So in 2008 it was a money problem and bad economics lead to austerity and we can get into whether or not The Reserve Bank was well behind the curve in the last business cycle or ahead of the curve in this business cycle but let’s just learn from that.

    So in 2008 Kevin Rudd the then Australian Prime Minister gave everyone in Australia with a tax number a $1000 so that’s about $20 billion but the key thing here is it ended up that the BIG FOUR Australian banks couldn’t sustain there own financial capabilities. Yes there was bad economics and bad policy but the banks was lying and cheating and stealing and now they’re caught up in an Australian Royal commission.

    So the question now is will there be a New Zealand stock market collapse and will there be a money crises compared to 2008? That’s a very complex answer because no 2 sell-offs are the same. And is the New Zealand market weakening, YES! And why? Because the global market is weakening! The landscape at the moment IS, “there is nothing really wrong with New Zealand,” it’s everywhere else that’s the problem and New Zealand is being dragged down a little bit by the rest of the world.

    So with all that in mind we now look at what a UBI needs to do and it needs to maintain GDP growth above 3% while at the same time keeping the stock markets level or slightly higher or lower but always returning to the medium.

    The big difference between now and the economic meltdown of 2008 is austerity has failed and everyone knows it. Everyone is looking at neoliberal politics sideways. So a UBI doesn’t just have to keep money circulating with in the economy it has to be set at sufficient nutrition rates for children (child UBI) youth (youth UBI) and a UBI for everyone else so they each have enough to pay for food and we would do this to place the stock markets in neutral while retirement funds earn 3-10% or what ever, and in ETFs and asset prices don’t get to crazy and a Financial Transaction Tax dumped on top each stock trade to maintain the whole system of redistributing wealth through a UBI mechanism.

    Now what a UBI paradigm isn’t enough to cover is a Free Universal Public Housing, and a Free Universal Public Health Sytem, Free Universal Education and a Free Universal Public Transport transport system. These things could be easily sustained with in a government budget of about 20-30% of GDP annually well with in current tax regimes given that 30% administration costs are pulled out of Health, Education, Public Housing, Public Transport and Welfare to be replaced with a new UBI paradigm.

    Now for a lot of people a UBI will be more than enough to sustain some ones nutritional needs remembering this is a flat rate for children, youth and everyone else. And for some people they’ll need extras like labourers or athletes. And when there’s an economic shock everyone’s basic needs will be meet and basic dignities can be applied through social workers attached to universalism instead of neoliberal austerity.

    • Gosh Sam – it’s good that UBI gets aired and discussed. But I think the point that weka is making is looking at it from an outcomes basis. I will read all your arguments later but want to state this view quickly. A universal payment that fits all, probably based on the lowest needed to keep going, would not be an advance for the people. We are already grappling with the tendency to replace decision-making people, groups of criteria etc., with algorithms and find that life-supporting systems are being run by hands-off machines, ie computer systems set up by the people who are making real money in our economy. Those are the technocrats, seduced by our love of machines and intricacy and cleverness.

      Meanwhile the economy is run down in the pursuit of money from within the world-wide financial system which is always looking for investment producing returns of near 10% per annum. Considering that the financial system is a mind-exercise, a balloon that has to be regassed daily (exchange rates, market reports and great unease during enforced holidays), ordinary real things are of secondary importance. S

      So UBI could be used as a system to point to with praise by financiers and politicians while it consistently is under-funded and people die of starvation, neglect, despair and madness. Just listen to Donald Trump at his latest news broadcast telling everyone how good USA is, the best, the good, the clever, and with ’41 million masks’, the country with the big numbers of good things. Life for others is just a talking point to these ‘Half-Men of O’.* So don’t put your faith in a good idea, think of how it may be used by the Half-Men to act against our needs and well-being, and ensure that there are safety measures written clearly into any legislation and regulations formulated by the PTB, which will hold the ‘efficients’ at bay until society and rules break down altogether and then look to other countries in the world for examples of dystopia.

      Half-Men of O: *The book concerns two children from New Zealand, Susan Ferris and Nicholas Quinn, who find themselves transported to the world of O where they must confront the terrifying Halfmen, a race of humans who, through the misuse of magic have split the evil half of their nature from the good.

      • Rent/property tax rises, prices of goods and services rises. In the end nothing changes except for base price of various items. The only way UBI works if it’s in a post scarcity environment.

        • Taking a devils advocate position, it would be much more efficient than the present broken WINZ, which should be placed on a modern Crimson Assurance from which the pirates remove, and then allowed to slip over the edge of the flat world from which it was launched.

          But on the other side, the answer to the reasonable reply to the above; If it was protected for rises in costs through the CPI, wouldn’t that keep it honest? Unfortunately that wouldn’t do the job of maintaining spending power to meet the changing requirements of individual and state, because the CPI is a tortuous little instrument mainly useful to the Stats Dept for measuring changes in whatever it has chosen to measure.

          We have had the Uni of Otago valiantly keeping tabs on the basket of food in line with the dietary needs at different ages they have established, but you don’t hear much about that.
          Please download the FREE Information Package for Users of the New Zealand Estimated Food Costs 2019 available from the[sic] OUR Archive.

          Really gummint isn’t interested in facts, unless they’re ones they have had crafted to their own design. Even the base rate of the benefit was never evidence-based, but on a reckon, and it has doddered on ever since despite evidence that it is INSuffIcIenT.

          Recent piece from the ODT and Bruce Munro on the CPI and food etc.

          This study on food and families looking at Maori perspective would be of
          interest – haven’t read, haven’t time, but will get back to this later.

          • I can grant you that index products signal the price of a bundle of blue chip stocks at anyone but they can not truly predict a flat rate, nor is it actually possible to have one effective price for all low wage workers, there’s variables, there’s always variables. That’s not a post-scarcity world where resources are divided evenliesh.

            So when energy, housing, transport, health and education are democratised we will have a new means of production that is able to distribute resources evenly and then a price mechanism can be placed on top of that. But it’s only once the current system fails can we even contemplate creating a new means of production.

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