Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Footnotes

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  • mark taslov,

    through

    throw!!!!!!!!! ze fuk. I'm stepping away from the machine.

    your taxed dollar • Since Mar 2008 • 1691 posts Report Reply

  • Josh Addison,

    Yep, bought a ticket, didn't win jack - big surprise. I'd say I understand statistics pefectly well, and I also get risk/reward cost/benefit balancing as well. I earn more than enough that the (very, very high) risk of wasting $8 on a ticket isn't going to hurt, and makes it worth the (very, very low) chance of winning a shitload of money. Hell, if $8 was the most money I'd ever thrown away on nothing, I'd be more than happy...

    What did put me off ever doing it again was looking at the winnings afterwards, though - 1st division $36 mil, 2nd division $700,000, 3rd division... $900? How do they work out the weighting of the prizes? As others have said, if there were a bigger chance of winning a smaller prize, instead of astronomical odds against winning an astroniomical prize, I might be more tempted.

    Onehunga, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 297 posts Report Reply

  • andrew llewellyn,

    As for Bain, I decided he was guilty on the day of his arrest.

    That's kind of scary, Robert. Based on what?

    He wore loud jersey's in built up areas, he was obviously dodgy.

    Since Nov 2006 • 2074 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    The illusion of empowerment for individuals is insignificant in a nation where our government can't even make a truly attainable five year plan.

    The phrase "five year plan" isn't really something that supports your argument, unless you think we should transform our entire economy to produce only coal and tractors.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6207 posts Report Reply

  • Rich Lock,

    please stay in China, mark. It clearly suits you. And it suits me very well for you to be there and not here.

    back in the mother countr… • Since Feb 2007 • 2401 posts Report Reply

  • Lucy Stewart,

    He wore loud jersey's in built up areas, he was obviously dodgy.

    I thought it came out that the jersey actually belonged to Victim Support, not Bain?

    Amherst, MA • Since Nov 2006 • 2093 posts Report Reply

  • mark taslov,

    Firstly

    please stay in China, mark. It clearly suits you. And it suits me very well for you to be there and not here.

    Please deselect the ad hominum feature on your word processor Rich, either discuss the topic, provide some examples, give us context, or simply don't bother. The insularity of what you just said sounds recneckish

    The phrase "five year plan" isn't really something that supports your argument, unless you think we should transform our entire economy to produce only coal and tractors.

    Makes no sense. My argument? that Churchill's quote is drawn from lack of experience or that jurors are under qualified?

    your taxed dollar • Since Mar 2008 • 1691 posts Report Reply

  • andrew llewellyn,

    We had a relatively complex case of kidnapping, extortion and assault with four defendants. After the initial address from the judge, and a few minutes of the prosecution's case outline we were sent to the jury room while a point of law was discussed. In that break, one of the more outspoken jurors had already established guilt and was detailing the case for the prosecution (before they had). This was a common pattern throughout the trial and it was down to no more than two of us to keep people aware of the fact that we needed to listen to both cases and sets of evidence before making judgements.

    I was on 3 juries in one week (a very small pool to choose from, a core of us served on all trials that week).

    On one trial, a jury member could not be persuaded from making things up (what if...) rather than focussing on the evidence.

    In another, a large retired british prison officer refused to believe the police would arrest anyone who wasn't guilty. The jury foreman in this one slept through one afternoon - the prison office obscured him from everyone else & it wasn't his problem to wake him up.

    Since Nov 2006 • 2074 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    As others have said, if there were a bigger chance of winning a smaller prize, instead of astronomical odds against winning an astroniomical prize, I might be more tempted.

    Wouldn't work though. It's not the thousands of mini-prizes that everyone buys the tickets for. It's the chance to win the big one.

    If you cut the top prize in half, and distributed that money at the bottom prizes, you'd sell less tickets, so have less money to distribute.

    (I'm not sure if the prizes are related to the likelihood of winning them)

    Since Nov 2006 • 6207 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    Makes no sense. My argument? that Churchill's quote is drawn from lack of experience or that jurors are under qualified?

    5 year plans is not a good phrase to support an argument that democracy doesn't allow central planning. 5 year plans were not good planning.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6207 posts Report Reply

  • ScottY,

    Russell, what about my point -- would people care how the jury had behaved had there been a conviction? Most juries convict. Most people in fact plead guilty. I don't think the issue would arise. The problem is that people only see justice being done if there is a conviction, not an acquittal. Both are justice however on the system that we have.

    I agree, and I made a similar point on another thread a week or two ago. We only remember the ones that "got away with it".

    Yorke of The Atatu • Since Feb 2009 • 790 posts Report Reply

  • ScottY,

    The primary weakness of democracy is that there is no consideration for making long term plans, and this was something that particularly concerned me on your blog about your son raising his fist Russell. The illusion of empowerment for individuals is insignificant in a nation where our government can't even make a truly attainable five year plan

    Mark, I don't get it. Weren't you supposed to put a sarcasm tag in your post. You're not actually serious, are you?

    Five year plans? How did they work out for Stalin and Mao?

    Yorke of The Atatu • Since Feb 2009 • 790 posts Report Reply

  • andrew llewellyn,

    We could fund, for example, the independent journalism venture we have talked about in the past.

    A natural habitat refuge for rescued sow crate pigs!

    'sokay, I didn't win.

    Since Nov 2006 • 2074 posts Report Reply

  • Rich Lock,

    Mark, I may or may not actually find the time to rip your argument into the shreds it deserves to be ripped into sometime soon, or I may just not bother because you clearly aren't getting it and I don't have the time to start from first principles.

    I am in fact thinking you are steering dangerously close to Troll territory, what you said is so lame.

    However....

    You said:

    Democracy is not the worst form of government compared to Nazism and there are better

    Then you said:

    either discuss the topic, provide some examples, give us context, or simply don't bother

    Since you clearly think there are better forms of Government than that which we could for the sake of argument call 'Western Democratic', how about you provide some examples of governmental forms you think are better, or 'don't bother'.

    back in the mother countr… • Since Feb 2007 • 2401 posts Report Reply

  • andrew llewellyn,

    jersey's

    D'oh. I swear there's some auto-uncorrecting going on.

    Since Nov 2006 • 2074 posts Report Reply

  • Brickley Paiste,

    Sorry to interrupt but I have to draw your attention to something.

    In the Crimes Act, one will find the following definition:

    penis includes a surgically constructed or reconstructed organ analogous to a naturally occurring penis (whether the person concerned is male, female or of indeterminate sex)

    Who says these parliamentarians don't know how to party? A naturally occurring penis? Did they get George Carlin in to write that shit? I'm impressed.

    Now, the definition of bestiality brings its own fun but we'll save that for another day...

    Since Mar 2009 • 163 posts Report Reply

  • mark taslov,

    5 year plans is not a good phrase to support an argument that democracy doesn't allow central planning. 5 year plans were not good planning.

    Ah yeah i see, the wording, sorry. Arguably soome were come weren't. I wasn't making an argument that democracy doesn't allow five year planning ie India's five year plans, South Korea's five year plans. I was saying that 3 years is a very short time to be raising a fist at (specific to New Zealand)

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Five_year_plan

    But mainly I was just taking the piss out of a quote from a Nobel (literature) recipient.

    "four legs is the worst form of legfulness except for all the other leg quantities that have been tried (especially 2) ."

    your taxed dollar • Since Mar 2008 • 1691 posts Report Reply

  • Mikaere Curtis,

    The primary weakness of democracy is that there is no consideration for making long term plans, and this was something that particularly concerned me on your blog about your son raising his fist Russell. The illusion of empowerment for individuals is insignificant in a nation where our government can't even make a truly attainable five year plan

    Mark, I don't get it. Weren't you supposed to put a sarcasm tag in your post. You're not actually serious, are you?

    OK, so where's our plan for peak oil ? Where's our plan for climate change ? These are the two most serious issues facing us, and, apart from the Greens, our democratic representatives are either in denial or are wilfully self-deluded with regards the scale of the action that is required.

    I agree with with Mark, Churchill's statement on [representative] democracy is a woeful exercise in vacuous in question-begging.

    The big issue with democracy is that it can create disenfranchised minorities. The vast majority of mana whenua land theft occurred AFTER New Zealand had become a democracy. Need any more evidence of how shitty democracies can treat minorities ?

    No, representative democracy is NOT the best system. Consensus democracy, such as is practiced by the Greens, is much better at getting good decisions. It is very hard work, and very slow. But it is also produces strong buy-in from the participants - and isn't that the whole point ?

    Tamaki Makaurau • Since Nov 2006 • 455 posts Report Reply

  • Josh Addison,

    Wouldn't work though. It's not the thousands of mini-prizes that everyone buys the tickets for. It's the chance to win the big one.

    Who's this "everyone"? I just said I myself would be more motivated by more smaller prizes (where "small" is still in the tens of thousands). In fact, it wasn't the super big jackpot that motivated me to buy a ticket for this one, it was the "must be won" aspect that meant that the big jackpot amount could flow down to the lower divisions (though even that didn't work out...)

    However, I'd be willing to believe that I'm not the norm here, and certainly the gigantic jackpot makes for better marketing material, so you may be right.

    Onehunga, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 297 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    Those Greens? Aren't they great!

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7386 posts Report Reply

  • Rich Lock,

    [sigh]

    Mikaere, please point me to that part of Churchill's quote where he said '**representative** democracy is the worst form of government, except for all those others which have been tried from time to time'.

    back in the mother countr… • Since Feb 2007 • 2401 posts Report Reply

  • Jan Farr,

    On one trial, a jury member could not be persuaded from making things up (what if...) rather than focussing on the evidence.

    In another, a large retired british prison officer refused to believe the police would arrest anyone who wasn't guilty.

    I was on two juries in one week (years ago) and we had intransigent, irrational people in each. Two of them in one trial refused to believe that anyone as beautiful and well-dressed as the defendant could possibly be guilty even though the evidence that she was, was overwhelming. After a frustrating few hours in that tiny airless room the rest of us decided to stand around the table with our backs to them and our faces an inch from the wall while the defendent's admirers sorted themselves out. With no-one to pay them attention they decided in two minutes to join the majority.
    In the other. one woman believed that a Maori man couldn't possibly be innocent - even though he had clearly been stitched up quite incompetently by the police.
    Overall, though, I was impressed with the abilities and common sense of the people who were randomly pulled into the system. I wonder how common that experience is because I've never been on another jury.

    Carterton • Since Apr 2008 • 394 posts Report Reply

  • Mikaere Curtis,

    Mikaere, please point me to that part of Churchill's quote where he said '**representative** democracy is the worst form of government, except for all those others which have been tried from time to time'.

    Sure, this creature of Westminster democracy was actually talking about something else...

    Tamaki Makaurau • Since Nov 2006 • 455 posts Report Reply

  • mark taslov,

    As I mentioned Since you clearly think there are better forms of Government than that which we could for the sake of argument call 'Western Democratic', how about you provide some examples of governmental forms you think are better, or 'don't bother'.

    You have conveniently placed all the many variations of democracy into one shoebox. This self satisfied complacence is of what benefit? Basically do your own search. I'm not the one saying democracy is the best, you are. You Rich are saying democracy is best, and if I don't agree with you I can fuck off or I'm trolling. As if better is some all encompassing quantifiable concept. Better in what respect? human rights? economically? technologically? The health system? environmentally? Ask an answerable question and I'll answer it.

    What kind of answer are you looking for?

    The Vietnamese system? And then you disagree and then we argue?
    just bring this up at your next "4 legs good 2 legs bad club meeting" and I'm sure they'll all agree with you Rich Lock.

    your taxed dollar • Since Mar 2008 • 1691 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    I hear the Court staff were more shocked than anyone and they're usually spot on.

    Yes. I think some of the stuff we got from the journalists came from the court staff, particularly the impression that minds were made up before the arguments were concluded.

    But like you said, I'm over talking about it ;-)

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18991 posts Report Reply

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