I'd really hope that neither Damian nor Gio abandon PAS. By all means take a break, but what is said here is important. And your voices are important.
I know what it's like to become fed-up with an argument here and I know what it's like to read a comment and think "shit I really was out of line". Nothing disappoints me more than when I fail to live up to my standards.
I know the feeling of being hurt when someone I respect disagrees with me, even if, especially if, I still believe I'm right.
I know the sadness of seeing what I thought a brilliant observation ripped apart, or worse, ignored.
But all of those things are balanced by the conversations that we have here, the insights and experiences we share and the ideas we challenge together. This community informs my thinking about New Zealand and the world and it is worth it.
As for Russell ...
thanks for being the moderator you are, whatever criticisms I have should be held in the light of the wonderful community you have hosted over the years at times when many of us have been difficult to read.
Tie the bloody thing down well.
I have a suspicion that the new foundations will be an engineering marvel.
It is such a relief to hear that things are looking brighter.
I look forward to technical details and I look forward to the non-technical details of your lives becoming less chaotic. I would have said normal but small steps for now.
+1 on a fundraiser, I will pay money if you can figure out a pretense that the Hay's will accept.
I'd also note that David is the author of books that make excellent christmas presents.
How about “Morepork”?
known now in our house as vitamin P
I just toss words in the air
And observe the patterns
Yeah that's what I said ... Genius
Ian reminds me what genius is
I feeeel good!
Public squares can have the problem of people just walking away. The value of a core of engaged regulars at the cafe is they help progress discussions without driving away the lurkers, who are the largest group here. But they by their own voices can restrict the discussion.
I can see your point that the culture of the cafe can restrict the breadth of the discussion. I don't have any answer to the balance question. While I commented that this thread got unpleasant I wasn't comfortable with you being targeted specifically. To me you were neither the only nor major voice that had lost it's inclusive tone.
Somewhat circularly I think that might be my point, in the cafe there is generally a desire to draw in as many as possible into the discussion, including those on the edge of the crowd with edgier ideas. In the square there is a tendency to ignore those that walk away. I like the cafe more than the square.
Sure hierarchies seem to be inevitable and not necessarily bad, certainly like you I have a very good friend in that upper class, from very middle class background and a great guy. But there are conversations where I am aware that he has connections that make the impossible easy.
The issue for politics is to ensure that those class structures do not lead to harm, that's what we trust our MPs to do. That hasn't been all that successful of late.
Religions are incredibly rigid class structure. Even setting aside the exclusion of all those who don't believe exactly what you believe, then the priest class is very stratified with enormous barriers to entry.
Sure the ideology says everyone is equal but the practice of religion is very different from the ideology.
Whee politics and religion:)