Hell, at moments of diminishing lucidity I think it wouldn’t have been hard for some rabid National supporter to do this, to cement Key’s place as a hardliner – I mean making a threat is easy, especially if you aren’t going to carry it out, but just want to generate fear and panic or devise an environment in which reduced freedoms seem a good idea – create the problem, then present a solution, easy as…
I’m reminded of the fake “Islamic Australia Federation” pamphlets that were infamously printed and circulated around Sydney during the 2007 Aussie federal elections. It blew back horribly on the local Liberal Party chapter that concocted it, and it would probably have gone unnoticed had it not been for a dissident Liberal member blowing the whistle.
At the other, far-right, end of the lobby lurks a paramilitary element that has routinely resorted to “eco-terrorism” to try to force conservation and policy backdowns to protect “their resource”. In 2004, memos orbited the fraternity urging hunters to release stoats onto Stewart Island in reprisal for 1080 pest control operations.
I got the impression that the 1080 blackmailers have a streak of Ted Kaczynski or some other half-baked New World Order dogma. The kind of dogma that's cut from the same cloth as those who think vaccines and water fluoridation are UN socialist world government mind control plots.
The “state” in many countries stepped out of bounds a while ago. The question is how do we as subjects of any state (which are after all just people who fool themselves into thinking they are doing a job) get it back to being an intergral part of our lives, and in some cases a helping hand, and not an all-consuming beast?
Donkey and his mates dont have an answer. They are just lackeys for the beast.
It brings to mind this 2004 piece from The Stranger:
In November 1960, a black 6-year-old girl named Ruby Bridges entered the newly desegregated William Frantz Public School in New Orleans. In reaction to her admission, white parents withdrew their kids from Ruby's class and she completed the first grade alone, with instruction from one teacher and support from a child psychiatrist. Ruby's walk to class on the first day of school inspired Norman Rockwell's The Problem We All Live With. In this painting (one of Rockwell's best, as far as we are concerned), a very black Ruby Bridges is escorted to school by four big white U.S. marshals. The image is powerful because it represents the federal government as an institution and enforcer of reason. The white bigots of New Orleans can complain, bitch, and threaten the lives of black boys and girls all they want, but in the end the federal government steps in to ensure that the rights of every American are protected.
This image of the federal government is now in a coma. The lawmaking bodies that are clustered in Washington, D.C. (the Senate, the House, the Justice Department, the Supreme Court, the White House), no longer form the enlightened center from which reason and justice emanate. During the civil rights era, the federal government could claim to at least aspire to this transcendental order (the Great Society, the War on Poverty, the Voting Rights Act of 1965), but not today. Since the beginning of the 21st century, Washington, D.C., has exerted a force that is not progressive (as epitomized by Rockwell's painting) but oppressive. This is not an exaggeration. For example, the sole reason why the state of California--or more accurately, the cities of California through the agency of the state--turned to its own citizens to establish funding for stem cell research is because the federal government, in the form of the reelected Bush administration, holds a profoundly backward position on the matter.
Why does the status quo of attacking the symptom persist? Could the common thread be that weed prohibition is big business? Big Booze, Big Prisons, the police-industrial complex, the nativist-industrial complex... you name it. Nothing's changed much since William Randolph Hearst made a yellow journalism issue out of it.
Toby Manhire parodies Key rather nicely.
My comment in that article (still in moderation at the time of posting):
"Those with nothing to hide have nothing to -- oi! My Swiss account details are none of your beeswax!"
If Snowden and Hager really have made the whole issue too big to ignore, then the only thing the PM has remaining up his sleeve is to scare people by blowing something up. Not in the spin doctor sense, but in the detonator and blasting cap sense.
(In UK politics, where there are more MPs and five year terms, by-elections have more importance in that a government with a small majority will tend to have it eroded by subsequent by-elections which tend to go against the party in power. This happened to the 74-79 Labour government).
Also the fact they still use the FPP system.
As for Iraq, it is only still a "state" on outdated maps, it no longer exists. Even after the first gulf war in 1991 the Kurds established their own defacto state. They have their interests, so do the Shiite militias and parties, and the Sunni are between a rock and a hard place, hardly keen to rejoin an untrusted Iraqi government and "state" that is totally dominated by Shiites, that is the "rump state" down the South East, what is left of Iraq. It will NEVER be one state again, as it was.
Yep, there have been predictions from high-up people that the artificial boundaries drawn up by Sykes and Picot will go the way of Yugoslavia. And just as messily too.
And what could have been...
* Business Insider: A detailed look at the Middle East that might have been
I googled him - he makes documentaries. *headdesk*
Local or overseas-based?
Only downside is suburban screamers who descend on Saturday and Sunday nights.
IE, the bridge-and-tunnel people?