Posts by B Jones

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  • Hard News: The shaky ground of…, in reply to Russell Brown,

    And it’s being used on our dollar as taxpayers.

    Then someone ought to be able to OIA departments to see who uses it. There might be a few issues if the company producing the test requires it to be kept confidential, but there's always the ombudsman to help out in those cases.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 724 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The shaky ground of…, in reply to Rachael J,

    It never ceases to amaze me how few people who work in HR are actually any good with people.

    I think it selects for people who are ok with putting their employer's interests ahead of the normal rules of interpersonal interaction. If you respected people's rights and abilities and autonomy it could do your head in. That's not so much a criticism of the people involved (the same qualities can make a person loyal, or a fair decisionmaker), but of the workplace and economic structure that sticks people there. It's like a gentler, more everyday version of the Stanford prison experiment.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 724 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Jonesing,

    Thinking about my namesake's candidacy, I can't help but wonder if anyone's done a serious analysis of where the urban women's vote has gone since 2008. I remember someone saying that Labour had lost it to that nice man John Key - perhaps it was Trotter. Now there's the Greens hitting 14%. I can't think of a group likelier to appeal to urban women, and likelier to benefit from Labour turning its back on its moderately feminist history of the last thirty years. But I don't have the numbers to show it.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 724 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Jonesing, in reply to Russell Brown,

    For better or worse, this is how most of the world does business.

    I think some of the public reaction to it stems not so much from outrage that servants of the public get to adopt a kind of business class lifestyle, but that there's a big gap between that business class lifestyle and the one that most people live. MPs etc are easier targets than forex traders and so forth, because they're on our news every night making decisions that affect us, whereas we don't know the people whose investment decisions shut down our factory or foreclosed our mortgage or traded our country's entire wheat crop, and we don't get to elect them.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 724 posts Report Reply

  • Southerly: A Blog on Behalf of an…,

    Well, there is that. But I've actually heard the "power behind the throne" argument raised in the last decade, albeit a different cultural context.

    And, um, can I just point out that "somebody think of the children" clauses think of the CHILDREN, rather than their parents, who being adults are also worthy of some form of representation.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 724 posts Report Reply

  • Southerly: A Blog on Behalf of an…, in reply to Steve Barnes,

    I don’t think mothers with young children are poorly represented, they may not be there but their influence surely is.

    Isn't that like the argument that women don't need the vote because they have the ear of their husbands/fathers/brothers?

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 724 posts Report Reply

  • Up Front: The Missing Stair Part Two:…, in reply to Danielle,

    I am so much more bolshy online than in person

    Likewise. Partly it's a selection issue (being mellow and reserved online = lurking, and what's the point of sticking your head above the parapet unless it's to politely, um, set someone's arse on fire), but also because the social sanctions that operate face to face against showing anger don't work so well online. I once ignored a comment made by a new acquaintance at a dinner (about the reporter who was gang-raped in Egypt) that online, I would have totally taken down, because I didn't want to be the activist harpy that ruined the evening. I still go over various staircase-wit versions of what I should have said.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 724 posts Report Reply

  • OnPoint: BTW, the NZ Police can use…, in reply to Stephen R,

    (short of filling the HD with cat pictures)

    Even that wouldn't work.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 724 posts Report Reply

  • OnPoint: Ich bin ein Cyberpunk, in reply to Amanda Wreckonwith,

    Chatham Island State Prison

    Because that worked so well last time.

    Maybe this is a silly question, but given that I understand encryption that can't be cracked by governments isn't supposed to be publicly available (limit to number of keys) - isn't there a risk with encryption that using it attracts attention in and of itself, and that with small volumes of encrypted traffic, agencies can comfortably handle the processing power to crack it? I've assumed for years that everything I put on the internet, including email, can be harvested, it's just that nobody cares enough to do it provided I don't stick obvious keywords in there, or correspond with known agitators, or have offline activities that might draw attention. Security by obscurity.

    Of course, if enough people use encryption, the appearance of secrecy doesn't stand out as noteworthy. Another thought - a really good code doesn't look like a code.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 724 posts Report Reply

  • Southerly: My Life As a Palm Tree,

    Not to mention, different kids have different pleasures. One of mine is a future mountain climber; the other is a future health and safety inspector. Sticking timid kids into environments that freak them out can show them their inner strength, or it can scar them for life.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 724 posts Report Reply

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