Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Ideology for Evidence

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  • Julie Fairey,

    It's also worth noting that the public/private split in individual unions is not as pronounced as it once was.

    E.g. NZEI Te Riu Roa (who I work for when I'm not on leave) is well-known as "the primary teachers' union" but it has several thousand members who are working outside the state sector, e.g. for early childhood services (none of which are run directly by the state). The PSA itself has members in some areas which used to be part of the public service but aren't any longer, I think PSIS might be one of those, and other services that have been contracted out like catering in hospitals. Often (with the PSA anyway) there is a private sector union working on the same site and with the same occupational group, and they might even (shock horror) bargain the collective agreement together, as a MUCA (Multi-Union Collective Agreement).

    So it's pretty false to paint unions as Public Only or Private Only nowadays.

    On the bus lanes issue, I would be quite keen to see some breakdown of the 41,000 tickets over time. My suspicion is that the number of tickets has reduced, as the public has been educated about not driving in bus lanes. Purely anecdotal, and with no scientific merit, my observation of the bus lanes along Sandringham Rd is that I've seen very little of the usual warden with camera action this year.

    Orcland • Since Dec 2007 • 217 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    as the public has been educated about not driving in bus lanes

    Unfortunately, ticketing infringers is no substitute for actually informing people why bus lanes need to be free of cars to work.

    Pointing to successful overseas implementations might reassure doubters that this is not them being picked on. Diagrams and videos might help. As would repeating facts like half of *people* using the lanes to travel even if buses are only a fraction of vehicles seen.

    Ticketing on its own won't protect the scheme from the lobbying of connected rich folk who think their car has a "right" to go anywhere they want. No suprise it's Remuera Rd and Tamaki Drive that are scenes of greatest resistance.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16614 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    Couldn't they just buy their own bus? Much easier than convincing other people, surely.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6165 posts Report Reply

  • Julie Fairey,

    Good point Sacha. I guess I just take it for granted that people understand the social (and environmental) good of incentivising bus travel.

    Kyle, even if they did buy their own bus I think they'd have to have a certain number of passengers (2 or 3 depending) to qualify ;-)

    Orcland • Since Dec 2007 • 217 posts Report Reply

  • JackElder,

    Iain Banks made the point once that a full size Land Rover could, with very minimal alteration, qualify as a bus (where the definition was a vehicle that was able to seat 11), and thus escape the London congestion charge. So you may find that depending on how you define bus, many of our wealthier citizens may already be driving them.

    Wellington • Since Mar 2008 • 708 posts Report Reply

  • Matthew Poole,

    Using the bus-only lanes in Auckland is more than just the vehicle classification. It must also be used by an operator of a public transport service. That's why tour buses don't get to use the bus lanes.

    Unfortunately, ticketing infringers is no substitute for actually informing people why bus lanes need to be free of cars to work.

    That needs to start at the very top, with judicious clue-by-four application to the various local body pollie tubbies who want to make the Dominion Road bus lanes into T2 lanes. Take probably the least-used bus lanes in the city (Tamaki Drive), make them T2, ignore that even these lightly-used lanes suffered negative effects for bus trip times when shared with cars (but with great benefit for car trip times), and extrapolate out to the conclusion that putting buses and cars together in the busiest bus lanes in the city won't be a problem. Fucking genius.

    The pit from whence crawl… • Since Mar 2007 • 3908 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    But didn't the travel times actually suffer for other cars in that T2 trial on Tamaki Drive? - not even rational self-interest, just selfish ideology. More faith-based decision-making from those who voters persist in electing.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16614 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    Kyle, even if they did buy their own bus I think they'd have to have a certain number of passengers (2 or 3 depending) to qualify ;-)

    They could rent some poor people surely? It's so hard being rich, on top of taxes this bus lane persecution really is too much.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6165 posts Report Reply

  • Matthew Poole,

    But didn't the travel times actually suffer for other cars in that T2 trial on Tamaki Drive?

    IIRC, yes. Impact on buses was minimal, almost margin-of-error stuff, but the impact on non-T2 using cars was significant. Stereotypical selfishness by the Range Rover-owning St Heliers set.

    The pit from whence crawl… • Since Mar 2007 • 3908 posts Report Reply

  • Sam F,

    That needs to start at the very top, with judicious clue-by-four application to the various local body pollie tubbies who want to make the Dominion Road bus lanes into T2 lanes.

    I particularly love how the proposal means that instead of buses having full priority at peak times, they would probably then have more congestion in the T2 lanes at precisely those times, because of the morning and afternoon school runs and rush hour - when you tend to get a lot more cars with 2+ occupants - which I reckon would cause delays knocking on right through the bus schedules...

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1557 posts Report Reply

  • George Darroch,

    They could rent some poor people surely? It's so hard being rich, on top of taxes this bus lane persecution really is too much.

    This isn't Jakarta, yet. The practice was recently outlawed there, IIRC.

    The People's Republic of … • Since Nov 2006 • 2134 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    The Bus stops here...
    well gee, the new increased fares just started in Chch - $3.20 (up from $2.80) and the crowded bus
    I caught yesterday didn't even have working stop buzzers, very stressful for passengers having to yell out to the driver for every stop - what are we paying extra for I wonder?

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 4871 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca,

    I just happen to live off Dom Rd and use it most days at different hours.If they would just take car parking off the main arterial route and stick it in the side streets of which there are hundreds already. and many don't get used(I know ,I divert down them as soon as I get into a jam,) traffic would flow seemlessly, and a bit of exercise to get to shops wouldn't go amiss, I can tell you that for nothing.Then the buses could keep their peak right of way without all the hooha.It would then make Dominion less atrocious because it was only a couple of hours a day rather than 24 that we get now.Hrrrumph!
    Yours,
    citizen who uses the side streets for every day driving and parking. :)

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6116 posts Report Reply

  • Matthew Poole,

    what are we paying extra for I wonder?

    Joyce's anti-public transport attitude, that's what. It's all about farebox recovery ratios, and the Minister for Trucking's insistence that all forms of non-road and public transport pay their way in as-close-as-possible-to full so that he can provide more invisible subsidies to his mates in the RCF without having to increase roading taxes.

    The pit from whence crawl… • Since Mar 2007 • 3908 posts Report Reply

  • DeepRed,

    Joyce's anti-public transport attitude, that's what. It's all about farebox recovery ratios, and the Minister for Trucking's insistence that all forms of non-road and public transport pay their way in as-close-as-possible-to full so that he can provide more invisible subsidies to his mates in the RCF without having to increase roading taxes.

    Where's Allan Dick when you need him?

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 4257 posts Report Reply

  • Geoff Lealand,

    Whist we are on about ideology, the 'orrible Ari Sigman is in town --berating us on Nine To Noon this morning (at least I got in a parting shot!). I just wish someone in the media would question his credentials and personal agenda.

    Screen & Media Studies, U… • Since Oct 2007 • 2307 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    My recent post on the 'orrible Aric Sigman:

    http://publicaddress.net/default,6705.sm

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18839 posts Report Reply

  • philipmatthews,

    Just listening to him now. No one who sounds so angry should be handing out parenting advice ...

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2007 • 642 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    Also, how come Family First are suddenly big on feminism?

    Maybe because she's the sort of feminist who thinks abortion causes breast cancer. Maybe because her talk will be based on this kind of non-evidence.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4359 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    Nein to Non presents Sigman Fraud...
    ... basically he's a smack addict, right?
    pushing his own brand of guilt-edged Victorian Esteem-punk...

    and I was amused by this Family First press release:

    Come to School Ball – Have Sex
    Family First Media Release 29 July 10
    Family First NZ is shocked that a Bay of Plenty high school handed out complementary condoms to every student when they purchased their ball tickets.

    My bolding - English as a second language anyone or just twisting and spinning by inference...?

    They also note that (recent Media 7 guest) Pam Corkery is connected to a proposed brothel for women ...

    Their homepage doesn't seem to mention their own Forum on this Friday though... weird marketing...

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 4871 posts Report Reply

  • Geoff Lealand,

    Good one, Ian! At least they weren't supplementary condoms. Has anyone ever done a study of the correlation between right wing views and poor spelling?

    Screen & Media Studies, U… • Since Oct 2007 • 2307 posts Report Reply

  • B Jones,

    Sigman - why is he arguing against baby boomer styles of parenting? He seems like an old codger mainly because he's relitigating an argument that was relevant to the 70s and 80s. All the parents these days who might be considering ruining their kids lives by separating (according to him) - chances are they know exactly what it would be like since they'd have had separated parents themselves.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 810 posts Report Reply

  • Geoff Lealand,

    Coincidentally, the NZH (A8) yesterday featured an article, "Go back to work, mum--it's OK, study says", citing a new US study from Columbia University School of Social Work which argues that the net effect of child care and new mothers going into the workforce was 'neutral'. But Aric obviously doesn't read anything which might undermine his biased view of the world .

    Screen & Media Studies, U… • Since Oct 2007 • 2307 posts Report Reply

  • Julie Fairey,

    Through my work I've had to follow quite a bit of the research about the impact of childcare on young children (although not in any detail I must admit) and what seems to come out pretty consistently is:

    Either beneficial or neutral impact on the child as long as:
    1. The early childhood education service they are in is good quality (this is particularly influenced by as high as possible percentage of qualified teachers, and low child:teacher ratios)
    2. The child isn't in the service for more than about 7.5 hours a day (there's some differing stuff on this, but most that I've seen seem to come out about there)
    3. The mother doesn't feel guilty about the arrangement (not sure about implications for fathers' guilt, suspect it's not as prevalent)

    People go on and on about the "stressful environment" argument - that children, especially babies, have increased cortisol if they are in a stressful environment. However this presupposes that home is not a stressful environment, or doesn't significantly contribute to a child's stress. And the best way for an early childhood service to not be a stressful environment is to follow the stuff under 1 above, and to have the lowest possible staff turnover to enable children to build permanent relationships with teachers.

    Orcland • Since Dec 2007 • 217 posts Report Reply

  • DeepRed,

    The gauntlets are well and truly off. Richard Trumka calling off his visit was just the beginning.

    Unions begin 'name and shame' campaign

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 4257 posts Report Reply

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