Posts by TracyMac

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  • 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 • 635 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 • 635 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 • 635 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 • 635 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 • 635 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 • 635 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 • 635 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Autism and celebrity,

    If someone is going to turn their promotional blitz into a shill for various less-than-proven therapies, I think that essentially gives the interviewer licence to stop with the promotional routine and start playing hardball with these "facts".

    Perhaps that would encourage Sewell to stick to the interview topic. Alas, can't see it happening.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 635 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Humour with heart, in reply to Ethan Tucker,

    While I'm not someone who runs around wailing "triggurrrrr!", I would have walked out of the show after it descended into that area (at least, as it was described).

    Maybe the dude is being all "edgy" and "clever" by playing on the audience's touchy points, but I think art done purely for the sake of being edgy and shocking is often crap. Look at Tracey Emin and her bed - yeah, "clever" in one way. Artistic merit? Not so much for me.

    While it's not very pc to say there are some no-go areas in humor - and of course it's subjective as hell - I don't find rape funny. Or taking the mickey out of rape victims amusing. And I would not use "uptight" as a term to describe myself.

    Mocking how rape is viewed/dealt with? Great. Satirising how misogyny plays out in real life? Awesome. If he'd been doing lines like, "Everyone calls me a misogynist, but I don't know what those skanky whores are complaining about" - that might have been funny.

    But there's a difference between joking about rape vs rapists. I do think you could definitely do jokes about rape, but they would need to be VERY heavy on the satire.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 635 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: A law gone awry,

    It depends on the proportion of CBD (mellowing) vs THC (hallucinogenic). Some strains are naturally a bit higher in CBD, and some more are being bred to enhance it, to position them for medical use. Not a very well-studied substance yet.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 635 posts Report Reply

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