The Daily Blog Open Mic – Monday – 18th May 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. CEAC wants Gisborne rail fixed as was promised.
    Press report Citizens Environmental Advocacy Centre. 18th May 2020
    Quote; Evidence here from; 8 Nov, 2016
    Three political parties come out in support of restoring mothballed Gisborne-Wairoa rail link. The Maori Party, New Zealand First and Labour have all backed restoration of the Gisborne-Wairoa rail link as being good for the economy, environment and population.

    In the East Coast region Kiwi Rail are now being publicly ridiculed for their hollow choice as to whether to operate rail in east coast regions, and we support the public anger building as a result of Kiwi Rails lack of support for these isolated regions. “KiwiRail: the need for change”
    • Kiwirail has a new executive Greg Miller,and he is sadly not using “common sense” policies here, so consider Winston Peters statement in Parliament last week Mr Miller.
    • Remember now the terrible situation we are all in as we are gripped by the Covid 19 pandemic, and grappling with how should we proceed?
    • This was discussed by the Deputy PM Winston Peters in his speech last week in parliament during debate of the “Covid 19 budget,
    • This provides us with plenty of common sense lessons for Kiwi Rail also.

    Rt Hon WINSTON PETERS (Deputy Prime Minister):

    QUOTE; “The COVID-19 pandemic is a completely new situation in which the coalition has very few familiar guidelines to shape our response. We are in unchartered waters. In this novel situation, we look to history to help guide our thinking about the Government’s health and economic response and recovery strategies. US President Franklin Roosevelt’s response to the Great Depression is one lesson to draw from. He had no playbook for his response and nor do we. We’ve had to learn as we go, always with the health of our most vulnerable people foremost in our mind.
    The first Labour Government, you’ll recall, in 1935, responded to the ravages of the Great Depression with compassion and practical wisdom. The fourth Labour Government, in contrast, responded through ideology and blind devotion to neoliberal economic theory. The former tradition helped the many survive a massive disruption and its success settled public policy, even National Party policy, for the next 50 years; in stark contrast, the revolutionary tradition adopted by Roger Douglas and Ruth Richardson favoured the few and left abandoned a lost generation of New Zealanders, cynically cast adrift as no longer economically viable.” UNQUOTE.
    We had some very solid supportive responses for rail services from those two of your parliamentary piers Mr Miller so we now include their preferences and positions for rail services or you in our submission to you here now from; Stuff;
    From press cover of the Budget – This rationale from MPs Winston Peters and Phil Twyford must apply to Gisborne rail?
    14th May 2020. Quote:
    • “Rail is a critical part of our integrated transport network,” said State Owned Enterprises Minister Winston Peters.
    • “New Zealand needed a resilient and reliable rail system to support freight and get cities moving, and help reduce the country’s emissions”, said Transport Minister Phil Twyford.
    Did you get that Mr Miller? It was exhaustedly spelt out in the BERL report, did you read it?
    There was another article in the Gisborne Herald last week also that we include for you to consider, for using “common sense policy” and it was from an experienced railwayman that understands rail very well.
    Subject: Gisborne-Wairoa Rail: ‘Opinion Piece’ – KiwiRail CEO in an invidious position … (“Gisborne Herald”):
    KiwiRail CEO in an invidious position … (“Gisborne Herald” – Tues 12th May 2020)
    ‘Opinion Piece’ Letter –
    Greg Miller of KiwiRail has an unenviable job – as chief executive of a State Owned Enterprise, the poor chap is required to run a profitable business,
    but a large part of his network is unusable and (almost) everybody wants him to invest in repairs and expansion.
    He needs contracts with users, but who’ll contract to use a resource that isn’t there? Catch 22!
    He is disappointed that the Wairoa to Napier section isn’t getting much use, which isn’t surprising, but fails to understand that almost of the traffic
    on that section would come from Tairawhiti.
    Money from the Provincial Growth Fund would have been available to him to reopen the Turanga ki Wairoa line (note: Wairoa to Napier has already
    been reopened) but, instead of heeding the advice of the staff within KiwiRail who contributed to the BERL report, he has chosen to adopt Merv Goodley’s
    method of estimating costs.
    It is perhaps fortunate that he has declined the offer of PGF money, believing that it would be inadequate for the purpose, insofar as that money
    could now be directed to the people who can achieve restoration for the reliably-estimated figure.
    If KiwiRail can’t afford to do the job (or its contractors want to charge too high a price) then it should be done by contractors that are willing to “buy in”
    to the scenario detailed in the BERL report. Then Gisborne gets its connection to the rest of the network and KiwiRail gets its East Coast branch restored
    “for free”. Whether it chooses to operate on the line is up to KiwiRail, but it should not deny opportunity for other operators to use it.
    If this is not possible under the present “rules” then the Minister for State Owned Enterprises has the solution in his hand. ~Peter Woodling
    Mr Miller; yet another lesson for you came last Saturday after the paper run another rail poll and the results are worth considering again too;
    “Most want Covid-19 package to help rail line”
    by Matai O’Connor
    Published May 16, 2020 11:24AM
    A majority of voters in this week’s web poll think the restoration of the Gisborne rail link should be part of the Government’s Covid-19 response infrastructure funding package.
    Seventy percent (308 votes) voted yes to the question, with 28 percent (125
    votes) choosing no and 2 percent (11 votes) saying they “don’t know” making a total of 444 votes.
    “This project fits with the Government’s goals of reducing climate change impacts while boosting regional productivity.
    “Moving some freight by rail would reduce our use of fossil fuels.
    “It would also provide a more economical transport option for fresh produce destined for export, processed timber and other freight,” a yes voter said.
    “It is well known that investment in infrastructure drives business growth and by extension employment,” said another.
    “Rail is an important part of our transport modes.
    “Most necessary for the long term future of the East Coast region in a world requiring less use of fossil fuels.”
    One suggested the line could be used for tourism, “not only for upgrading freight movements from the East Coast to the rest of New Zealand but also for a very scenic East Coast passenger service,” they said.
    “The BERL report clearly states that it is a viable proposition to reinstate the line,” another yes voter said.
    “Emphatically yes, but not only part of the Covid response but also looking to support the future economic growth of the Tairawhiti region.
    “The Gisborne District Council and Mayor need to fully get behind this project and start some lobbying from here. We need a collaborative approach to restoring this iconic piece of rail infrastructure.”
    “This is the sort of infrastructure project that is a long-term investment.”
    Un-quote – Abridged;
    Now as Winston has said we need to look back to our history of this rail line; – to see what we have been offered by successive Governments.
    This is election year!!!!
    • 2013 Gerry Brownlee offer to allow another operator to use the line;
    • Quote; “If it is so good and it is going to work so well, why do they not just come along and say: ‘Let us have the track, so that we can make it all work.’?” Unquote.
    Since then we have met with several refusals from Kiwi Rail to have other companies operate rail services on the rail line.
    • even though Gerry Brownlee offered the choice in 2013,
    • a consortium of rail operators offered to run services on the line when fixed but all were refused access to use the line.
    2013 ‘Green Party joined Labour ‘ to promise re-opening the rail too;
    Labour, Greens pledge to reinstate Gisborne rail line
    22 Jan, 2013 5:31pm
    The Napier-Gisborne rail line.
    By: Phillipa Webb of the Gisborne Herald
    Labour and the Greens vowed at a public meeting in Gisborne last night that they would reinstate the Gisborne to Napier railway line if they won the 2014 election.
    East Coast National MP Anne Tolley’s absence from the meeting about the mothballed line was noted, with most of about 100 meeting-goers giving her a vote of no confidence.
    KiwiRail chief executive Jim Quinn offered no hope for the line and said the ongoing costs of repair and maintenance meant it would not be reopened.
    The meeting was held to discuss the release of the recent Berl report – an independent economic analysis of the KiwiRail report that led to a decision to close the line in November.
    Berl said there were “serious inconsistencies” in the KiwiRail report and there was a need for a comprehensive cost:benefit analysis of the line – a process that could cost around $500,000 and take up to 12 months.
    Gisborne District Mayor Meng Foon said the meeting was an opportunity to gain feedback from the region to take to Minister of Transport Gerry Brownlee when they met to discuss the future of the line.
    No date for a meeting has been set.
    John McLean, from Roger Dickie Forests and the Rail Action Group, questioned the need to close the line from Wairoa to Napier when there were opportunities for forestry in that area to use the line.
    Forestry investor Roger Dickie said of the 18 million tonnes of logs they hoped to produce in the next 10-15 years, he saw potential to send 7.5 million tonnes of that south by rail.
    Richard Burke from crop grower LeaderBrand said they were not given enough time to see how they could grow the use of the line before it was mothballed.
    So now it looks like only the National Party don’t want to offer a rail service to Gisborne, so we have little support other than the Government today to rely upon to fix our rail. We have been waiting since 25th March 2012 to have our rail services restored and returned to our community.
    Founding of the Gisborne railway.
    In 1935 Labour in their first Government in NZ embarked on building the railway from Wairoa to Gisborne.
    From it was opened finally in 1942 and the first train was greeted by 10 000 people in Gisborne then on that day.
    Now we need action Government.

  2. Questions to be asked while unemployed re funding of medicines and healthcare add them here to add them to a possible survey. .

    This is why I say only targeting medicines funding is only HALF OF THE MEDICINES FUNDING PROBLEM.
    This is why I say we need a MULTI TARGETED APPROACH.

    I would not be surprised one bit if half the unemployed are people in a relationship WHO CANNOT GET A BENEFIT of any sort including the supported living payment.

    Due to the restrictions in place which allows you to have or not have the slp or Jobseekers.

    How many of them are unable to buy all their meds every week or even the doctor or xray or whatever that had to be paid for that you would get paid for if you were under ACC care or benefit because of not enough money.

    This discrimination due to relationship status has to be brought to an end.

    In my opinion it is a breach of Article 25 of the Un Human Rights Act .

    Denial of healthcare and welfare due to economic status.

    We hear of chemists saying all the time of people not being able to afford even funded meds let alone unfunded meds.

    Then we have the waiting lists to get into the hospitals etc.

    I my opinion we need to start the discussion to turn ACC into a full blown MEDICARE AGENCY that covers ALL LONG TERM ILLNESSES no matter how they are occured.

    I suggest we get a survey done and measure the following.

    1 what % of the population is in a relationship with a long term illness .

    2 what % of the population that is in a relationship is having trouble funding funded meds ( Not all towns have a countdown or Bargain Chemist with free prescriptions).

    3 what % of the population that is in a relationship is having trouble funding unfunded meds.

    4 what % of the population that is in a relationship has applied for a Pharmac statutory authority and been refused funding.

    5 of that % of the population that have applied for a statutory application How many applications in total has their doctor applied for and been refused.

    6 How many people with long term illnesses have been refused the supported living payment benefit.

    7 How many people with long term illnesses have been refused the Jobseekers benefit.

    8 How many people with a long term illness that’s not recognised as a “long term illness” have been refused an SLP or Jobseekers benefit.

    Lets face it all winz benefits for anyone with a long term illness are inadequate anyway.

    They are nowhere near enough to pay for your medicines as they only pay a %.

    The disability allowance was originally intend only to pay for travel to your doctors and doctors fee’s it was never intended to pay for Medicines.

    Even if you make a statutory application to Pharmac to get a med funded there is absolutely no guarantee you will be funded no matter how many applications your Doctor or specialist makes.

    So what does everyone think.


    Any other questions you can think of we should ask ?

    THIS IS ANOTHER PRONG TO BE USED IN THE TOTAL ABANDONMENT OF THE RELATIONSHIPS RULE and to get long term illnesses and medicines funded.


  3. May.12/20

    Here is the rort: Politicians and advisors everywhere ratshitting up their remuneration for digging their toes in to sand. Everyone knows that the sea washes in around your feet, you can’t build a place to make a stand on sand.

    And politicians have to plan for necessary moves, explain them to the people so they know why and don’t start bleating when it happens. Set up an all-community weekend of workshops talking about the various problems, with the important numbers written down on paper that they can take away with them. Don’t put them on the side of buses or cars or … like the Farrago in the UK. And decide at the end of the weekend on the form of change, advertise it with reasons and references to agreements during the weekend, and do it – soon.

    I’m just re-reading The hitchhikers guide and like the spiel that Ford Prefect gives to the foreman trying to bulldoze Arthur Dent’s house. He works through the logic – Arthur is determined to lie on the ground to stop the bulldozers, he’s been at it for a long time and nothing is going to stop him, so can he have half an hour off to go to the pub and the foreman take charge of the project, taking Arthur’s place temporarily.

    As there seem to be a large number of politicians who are pretty mixed up, and suggestible, could we try something similar on them, get them to pretend to be thinking lefties writing on the various left-leaning blogs for a mind-break so we can all pop down to the pub. After watching Trump and others stagger their way through their sacred duties, it doesn’t seem too ludicrous. I’ll try thinking about it again before breakfast, like the White Queen.

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