Posts by Rich of Observationz

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  • Polity: A wilting rose, in reply to DeepRed,

    Wasn't Shipley "Coke" and Mallard et al "Pepsi"?

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5142 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Labour's medical cannabis…,

    eventually didn’t feel I could usefully respond to its requirement to score each drug

    And I don’t see how many people could do so, in an objective fashion.

    The only way you could do it would, as a specialist in the field, be to sit down and do a literature survey of mechanistic and epidemiological research and produce measurements of “harm” for each substance (along with an idea of the uncertainty in your estimate), rather as Cochrane do for medical drugs and interventions.

    Which would take some time and involve payment, I suspect.

    Otherwise, you’re just hunting for anecdata.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5142 posts Report Reply

  • Polity: A wilting rose,

    I would argue that politicians like Sanders and Corbyn as well as parties such as Syrisa and Podemos are merely re-establishing a left-of-centre alternative that had disappeared.

    The Attlee government, for instance, introduced a comprehensive health service, free education, welfare benefits and nationalised the key industries of the day. They did this in a country that had been brought to the edge of bankruptcy by the costs of fighting WW2, and they weren’t afraid to take the wealth of the aristocracy to fund these social programs.

    Those politics were mainstream in 1945, and for some years afterward. While the right may have got away with imposing a settlement where electors have the choice of two hard right ideologies (Cameron/Blair), they haven’t and can’t destroy the concept of democratic socialism.

    (One could make the same points in a US context around FDR vs Clinton/Obama).

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5142 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Dirty Politics,

    Can they both lose?

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5142 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Dirty Politics, in reply to Alfie,

    I had previously understood the name suppression was under the section that protects the identity of victims.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5142 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: UMR: Medpot and the public,

    Since 58% of Wellingtonians support legal weed, can't we have it just for us, with some sort of pass system to stop people from other areas coming to buy it?

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5142 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Media Take: Crime and punishment, in reply to Russell Brown,

    Lead? Mercury maybe? And there’d be a detectable quantity of that in most houses – somebody will have broken a fluorescent tube at some stage. Maybe they just check for “chemicals” – bound to be some of those around.

    (In fact, there are a whole lot of nasties that weren’t recognised when widely used.

    Leaded paint, obviously.

    Tetrachloromethane was a popular spot remover until the 70s, with a caveat that you shouldn't smoke while using it as the cigarette would oxidise the CCl4 to phosgene.

    Not to mention pesticides.

    Even good old petrol is 1% benzene, which has been known as a toxic carcinogen for a long time – so if the bikies who lived in the house rebuilt motorbikes in the living room, as is traditional, they probably caused more serious contamination than smoking P).

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5142 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Media Take: Crime and punishment,

    I've often wondered about these meth testing and cleaning companies.

    Those who watch this stuff will remember the storyline in Breaking Bad about a fumigation company that our heroes used as a cover for their meth lab operations. Well, what kind of companies also get to seal buildings and go in wearing protective clothing? Plus, the houses are already contaminated, obfuscating the evidence.

    Just a plot suggestion, your honour..

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5142 posts Report Reply

  • Legal Beagle: Future Leaders for…,

    A nine-year-old petitioned Parliament for the testing of people driving on foreign drivers licences in New Zealand

    I guess at nine one wouldn’t be too fussed about one consequence of that, which would be that NZers would no longer be able to drive overseas. (There is a reciprocal treaty by which we accept visitors home licenses. Withdraw from that, and our licenses wouldn’t be valid overseas. It takes several months to get a driving test appointment in many countries and most, like the US and UK, only issue licenses to residents).

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5142 posts Report Reply

  • Legal Beagle: The flag referendum:…,

    I'd suggest there were two fairly separate groups opposed to change: conservatives who identified with the old flag and it's imperial links, and liberals opposed to anything from John Key. (and design snobs, who form a statistically insignificant outlier).
    Add to that Maori people who as David notes, saw the new flag as not representing their community. (And/or, as Andrew Little suggested, having an affinity for the British monarchical link).

    I would imagine that a future left-wing government would have less problem changing the flag, especially if a suitably elaborate and inclusive process was followed, and Gareth Morgan paid for it.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5142 posts Report Reply

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