Posts by Bart Janssen

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  • Hard News: Decidedly Undecided, in reply to BenWilson,

    “the information is low quality”

    That wasn't what I said. I said the polls are deceptive. that is a totally different reason for banning them.

    By the way there are several countries where polls are banned for a period prior to the election date without any collapse in the society.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3217 posts Report Reply

  • Up Front: Dropping the A-Bomb, in reply to Kyle Matthews,

    Sadly not true: Student, 20, charged over death of baby

    In New Zealand (I think) all such cases result in charges being laid - because by laying charges the police and the court can ensure that the mother gets proper psychiatric care. I don't know for certain but I'm pretty sure that the vast majority of those cases never go to court, the intent of police and the courts is that a mother gets proper care for what is a psychiatric problem not a criminal problem.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3217 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Decidedly Undecided, in reply to steve black,

    what we are after is a proper representative sample

    To be completely anal, we don't want a representative sample of the population but only of the population that will actually vote on the day. It's pretty clear that a significant percentage of the population make their political opinions felt by actively not voting.

    The difficulty is that those that choose not to vote may well choose to answer the polls and may at the time of the polling say they will vote.

    When you combine the difficulty of getting a truly representative poll result with the appalling standards of reporting of polls by the media at large then I think there is a very real case for saying the polls are deceptive. Perhaps not deliberately deceptive but in practice they act to give the public a false impression of the state of political opinion in New Zealand.

    Given that, I'd argue they should be banned.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3217 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Labour's Fiscal Plan:…, in reply to Andrew C,

    Could you explain how this is done Bart?

    Bearing in mind I am not a tax accountant (huge sigh of relief) my understanding is that trusts will attract the top tax rate on the assumption that those benefiting from trusts are doing so to avoid paying the top rate of tax.

    There are situations where trusts are set up that do not simply exist to make rich people pay less tax and again IANATA but I suspect IRD would have a mechanism to rebate that tax.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3217 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Labour's Fiscal Plan:…,

    My response was "well I don't mind paying a little extra tax to put through the policies after all as far as I can tell I'm rich" and then I realised "holy crap I'm not even close to being taxed anything extra!"

    Essentially, the $150k mark means anyone bitching about an extra couple of percent tax on earnings over their $150k really does need to check their privilege. And nailing trusts at the same time seems perfectly reasonable since most folks use trusts as a means of avoiding tax, including most MPs.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3217 posts Report Reply

  • Feed: A scientist researches restaurants, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    You know Ian, it is rarely that you do not make my day happier. thank you.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3217 posts Report Reply

  • Feed: A scientist researches restaurants, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    Shame it is invite only…

    Yeah - who do you have to kill?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3217 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The Letter, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    that source is a bad faith actor

    IF that source is a bad faith actor it would nice if there some actual journalists around who could identify that and report on it. It might give us a better idea of The Herald's position in all this since they seem to be playing the role of both news organisation and political campaigner.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3217 posts Report Reply

  • Legal Beagle: Suicide Reporting; or, The…, in reply to James Green,

    I’d be really really hard pressed to be confident of making any conclusions

    As would I. The suicides are from multiple causes and much of the data is difficult to obtain. And yes it may be questionable whether the creative minds at the advertising agencies can do anything other than make themselves more money, but I'd like to at least try.

    What is clear is that the aim of the law, as confusing as its implementation may be, is to reduce suicides. In particular, the anecdotal copycat suicides. Yet the rate of suicides in NZ has not decreased as a result of this law.

    So I'd rather not have many lawyers sitting around figuring out how to make this law function more efficiently at all. Because the law itself is failing to reduce suicides. Time to try something different, rather than polishing the turd that we have at present.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3217 posts Report Reply

  • Legal Beagle: Suicide Reporting; or, The…,

    I realise your post mostly highlights the insane complexity of dealing with the law as it stands and you've done a really good job of highlighting why the law needs to be refashioned so that it works as intended.

    But behind this law is a real problem. Last year more people died by suicide than died on our roads. Yes that's abuse of bolding and yes I'm becoming tedious and boring on this issue.

    I don't agree with you that the evidence show reporting of suicides increases attempts, I strongly doubt that there is anything more than anecdotal evidence to that effect and a statistically sound meta analysis is needed before I'd be comfortable with that conclusion.

    But even if the evidence stands up to examination it is pretty clear that the policy of hiding suicide underneath a cloying blanket of law has not worked to reduce the loss of life. We report road deaths in great detail and that combined with the application of tremendous creative talents in the advertising industry has actually reduced our road toll. Perhaps it is time to take the same approach with suicide. It won't be simple, there won't be one approach that fits all the reasons for suicide but that is not a reason to sit back behind the law and ignore those deaths.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3217 posts Report Reply

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