Posts by BenWilson

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  • Speaker: An Open Letter To David Cunliffe, in reply to Kyle Matthews,

    Dunne was a Labour MP from 1984 – 1994. Never been National Party

    Heh, I actually knew that, too. But someone argued so blue in the face the other night to me that he had always been a Nat that it caused mental interference. I guess I can't tell the difference cognitively. Walks like a Nat, quacks like one.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8592 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Terror panics and the war imperative, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    You mean this:

    whether you think Key should (as Mark puts it) ” prioritise the defence of New Zealand” by ruling out any New Zealand citizens’ participation in humanitarian aid or independent journalism because ISIL don’t seem to like that infidel nonsense overmuch either.

    was actually a question? It looks like some kind of statement about you and your straw men.

    I don't know where that came from, or what it's asking. Who said Key should do that, and why should I answer it, having not suggested it? Mark didn't suggest it either, it's some kind of straw man you're trying to derail with.

    But then again, considering you say:

    I’d like to see a much stronger case (and a Parliamentary mandate) for New Zealand participation in any military intervention, but I’m not buying into knee-jerk isolationism either.

    ...I can't even tell what your position is, or even what you meant by "No I don't". Tonally it sounds like you're arguing with me, but the words don't tally up. Do you actually mean to say you don't think directly engaging ISIL militarily increases the chances of terrorist attacks against NZers?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8592 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Terror panics and the war imperative, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    No, I don’t.

    Cool, I’ve permalinked this so that I can hand it back to you when the first Kiwi gets their head cut off over this.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8592 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Terror panics and the war imperative, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    So, should Key do that by restricting Jon Stephenson’s freedom of movement until he stops putting New Zealanders at risk by reporting that might piss off ISIL and their ideologial chums? Same treatment for irresponsible aid workers or tourists?

    Clearly Mark wasn't suggesting that. He was referring to Key's real power, and intention, of putting our troops in there, who will most likely very soon be involved in killing ISIL people, after which a retaliation is very much more likely.

    Or do you not think so?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8592 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Terror panics and the war imperative, in reply to Farmer Green,

    Legitimate ? Really?

    It's as close as we can get.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8592 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Doing over the witness, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    Because you can create a similar 2x2 logic equation that is absurd does not make what I presented less relevant, it is an utterly false equivalency.

    Yes, your argument out of context looked to me like Pascal's Wager, but in context it makes sense. The missing bit was "And we also have good reasons in this case to think that I am right".

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8592 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Terror panics and the war imperative, in reply to Kyle Matthews,

    Negatives like our passport, or positives like trade treaties, access to oil etc shouldn't have any part of it.

    Well, they're like the wipings on the toilet paper, compared to the full dump. They're still little smears of shit I'd rather not have on me, but yes, totally, the main reason not to go turning up in some fucking unlimited military adventure in Arabia is because it is a rotten, evil, stupid thing to do. We did well not to be much involved in the first place, although we could have gone further officially and actually protested the stupidity of King Bush the Second. To join in now is something that we absolutely must hang on our government. Without their willingness, it would not be happening. It should not be happening.

    If we are to be involved as peacekeepers then it absolutely must be via the only legitimate channel, a UN sanctioned and controlled force.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8592 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Doing over the witness, in reply to Kyle Matthews,

    I could construct this same 2x2 box for “aliens are invading earth!”, and come up with the same answers, so by that logic we should be trying to prevent aliens invading the earth.

    Yes, it was an argument structurally similar to Pascal’s Wager, which no scientist would ever accept as a good reason to become a Christian.

    However, it’s not such a poor argument if there is quantification the chances and costs, and outcomes.

    The cost of investigating for police corruption is not zero. The outcome if the police are corrupt and get away with it is not infinite harm. The outcome if they are corrupt and get caught is not complete negation of the harm.

    But, the cost of investigating corruption is very low and the outcome of getting away with corruption is quite high harm, which is mostly negated by being caught, and if we have some good reasons to believe corruption might have happened, then we should investigate.

    It seems to me that in absence of the last bit, the cost/harm part is usually in balance – we don’t investigate everything the police do as a matter of course just because there is a chance of corruption. And prosecutions are extensively tested in front of courts before actual sentences are passed.

    So really, it does actually come down to reasons to believe that corruption has occurred. I think that there most likely was political pressure to rumble Hager, and that this reeks to high heaven. But I accept that I’m somewhat biased towards thinking that this kind of political pressure does happen in this country, with this government, in no small part because of Hager’s revelations.

    I don’t think that legal recourses are going to do much here (although I hope I’m wrong). This one is really down to public perception about whether what is happening here is something we want in this country. That needs to be hammered. If this event hurts the Key government, or the media, they will be discouraged, or will cry foul respectively. The scary part here is that both our government and our media are practically unhurtable from having their shocking inadequacies exposed. There’s such a high level of cognitive dissonance in this country that evidence of high level corruption and crackdowns on whistleblowers seems to actually strengthen both the government and the media.

    Sleepy hobbits, wake the fuck up, cause Sharkey is here.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8592 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: An Open Letter To David Cunliffe, in reply to Trevor Nicholls,

    I wouldn’t call giving a majority party a majority of seats “gaming the system”.

    I would if the majority given is far in excess of the majority polled.

    ETA: And that’s also on the proviso that you even accept a party getting much less that 50% of the cast votes a “majority” just because it’s bigger than the nearest competitor. In 1981 Social Credit got over 20% of the votes cast, and won 2 (out of 92) seats. I think that may have been the high water mark of how fucked FPP was, that Labour got more seats, and Social Credit a further 20%, between them they had 60% of all votes cast, and still Muldoon got another 3 years.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8592 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: An Open Letter To David Cunliffe, in reply to Trevor Nicholls,

    I guess that is the solitary advantage of FPP, it’s hard to see how that could be gamed.

    It's super easy to game. You only have to beat the opposition by a little bit everywhere and you can have a massive overwhelming landslide. Which is not theory, it's what happened, over and over.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8592 posts Report Reply

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