Posts by TracyMac

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  • Up Front: Lighting the Dark, in reply to Tess Rooney,

    ...we make sure we can run in those shoes, and track who's around and who might be a threat, but how do you avoid the bloke in your living room that you invited in...

    That's right. The only times I've been physically and sexually assaulted have been by an ex-partner (female) and "family" members.

    But I wonder if one of the reasons we are hyper-vigilant about stranger danger is precisely because we encounter assaults (and the lead-up controlling or dismissive behaviour) from our "nearest and dearest". If my ex-boyfriend was so much of a prick to me, how much worse could a stranger be?

    Of course, assaults and murders by (ex) partners and family members have been just as horrific as those of any random serial killer. They just tend to be more targeted and less elaborate (but much, much more likely). But those embedded fears aren't rational, in the moment.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 618 posts Report Reply

  • Up Front: Lighting the Dark, in reply to Nat D,

    Thank you, I was just going to make the same point.

    What about Wossname in Auckland who beat his ex-girlfriend to death a couple of years ago? Same entitlement syndrome, result was still a death.

    The only difference is that guns make it easier to kill someone rather than putting someone in a hospital, Make it even easier to kill multiple people. The underlying motive and intent? Exactly the same.

    Sure, the US needs to continue their gun debate, but whatever the outcome, it doesn't stop toxic attitudes to "the Other", whatever the Other may be.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 618 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The Fine Line,

    On a slight tangent, Australia's job market and economy is going to have to free-fall a lot further before you'd expect to see many Aussies chancing their arm in NZ on a substantially economic basis. The economy and especially wages here are still way ahead of NZ's. We'll see what happens if Tonee and crew dismantle the minimum wage.

    I expect there may be a trickle of "political refugees" who simply can't stomach the current govt. And a whole bunch of NZ citizens returning home if they lose their jobs. This will mostly be the manual and service workers that make up the preponderance of economic migrants. But I'll be in the same boat if I lose my job, especially since more agencies in Canberra are requiring security clearances.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 618 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: Let's talk about class, in reply to Kevin Hague,

    No intention to ring your bell, Kevin. I think the parliamentary Greens are doing a hell of a lot for workers' rights, and certainly get more bang for the buck on these issues than Labour is right now.

    As someone who votes Green, but is not a party member, I'm afraid I was unaware of the work done on Pike River and mining safety in general.

    I suppose it's the same old story of the "no mines at any cost" so-called "loony" element being played up in the media, vs the more pragmatic approach of those actually doing the work (and the majority of Green voters, I suspect).

    Thanks for the extra detail, and I'll do my own foot-shuffling for being sucked in by media biases I'm actually fully aware of!

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 618 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: Let's talk about class, in reply to AceMcWicked,

    Co-signed. I'm glad that the article and this comment don't throw civil rights/"identity politics" under the bus. A fair society should be fair to everyone, whatever boxes your identity ticks.

    That said, economic fairness is fundamental - I'm afraid that as a queer person, I care a lot less about gay marriage as I do having fair pay, and decent employment rights. But both should be achievable.

    As for terms like "class war", they make me very tired. No revolution has succeeded without the co-opting of a good chunk of the middle classes. So too with getting any decent labour rights and so on.

    The most glaring divide these days is between the super-rich and the working and middle classes. We need to band together to stop labour rights being eroded to help keep those elites in check.

    For the silence around the miners, I believe its lack of prominence is its lack of "sexiness" from a media perspective. Again, a mining company is "big business", and even Labour wants to position itself as "corporation friendly" .

    The Greens have less of a problem there, but I'm sure some of their foot-shuffling is due to that sizeable sub-group whose opinion is "all mining is bad". If there wasn't a mine, no workers would have been harmed.

    I'm not in favour of open-slather mining myself, but until there are viable alternatives, we need those minerals. The Greens should step up to promoting safer mining practices, and the use of more efficient, sustainable, and less intrusive technologies for all forms of resource extraction.

    We are nearly all affected by worker's rights, and we need them for everyone from ditch diggers and care workers to the middle class occupations. No-one wants to return to the bad-old days where most of the employment cases in the courts were about unions fighting each other for jurisdiction of some industry (true story), or "closed shops" or the like. Unions should be promoting their lean-mean ethos as advocates for workers, not nest-feathering (as they are much more so these days). Fighting for German-style industrial relations could be a worthy aim, where businesses and unions negotiate business changes, and the aim is to produce and innovate without being solely accountable to stock holders.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 618 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Snowden and New Zealand,

    I can see the security model they're aiming at being similar to Australia's. There, (mostly) public servants can get a security clearance at one of four levels, which can be transferred between agencies (there's a process to this - you don't just get access to every agency's "Secret"-classified information unless that agency authorises it). It's much better than the old system of each agency having to do their own security checks.

    Contractors for govt organisations are required to get clearances suitable for any classified material they'll potentially have access to. Staff at private companies (e.g. Telstra) don't require security clearances, except for specified individuals that may need to review classified material. Most of their stuff would be classified by the govt as commercial-in-confidence, so no clearance required for that.

    But you do get stupid things like the situation I'm in, where I work for a Govt Business Enterprise, which is commercial-in-confidence. But they are moving some of their data to a co-lo data facility with other govvie organisations, and I would need a security clearance to access that infrastructure. As an NZ citizen, I'm not eligible, so too bad if something goes tits-up there while I'm on call.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 618 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Snowden and New Zealand, in reply to Paul Campbell,

    Let's not get too silly. A "telecommunications service" is about connectivity - the means to transfer the data bits. A website is as much a "telecommunications service" as a phone call.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 618 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Snowden and New Zealand, in reply to Idiot Savant,

    So this was ALL implemented at the behest of National govts only? Hardly. Labour is obviously just as complicit.

    As for the Greens, I don't have time to look, but do they have an anti-spy policy? For NZ's own citizens?

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 618 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: What rules are these?, in reply to Keir Leslie,

    But that's the difference between a pop star -someone who is reported on in terms of their work - vs a celebrity, who is reported on "just because".

    It doesn't matter that they are often embodied in the same person - the way in which they are reported on is quite different depending on the objective.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 618 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: What rules are these?,

    I didn't follow the Hoskings case, but what exactly is the test of the difference between this kind of papping and stalking/harassment?

    From what I can tell (irony alert), it seems to boil down to being paid to do one and not the other.

    I certainly want to protect the right of members of the public to photograph what and who they like on the public street, but if courts can differentiate between "(ex) friends/partners" or "fans", and stalkers, then surely they can differentiate between those paid to carry out similar actions.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 618 posts Report Reply

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