Posts by BenWilson

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  • Hard News: The Internet in New Zealand,

    I've stuck with Telecom for my ISP because about 5 years ago, when I was doing an awful lot of network support for small businesses, mostly running DSL, I found that when things broke for the customers who had an alternate ISP, I had to always deal with buck-passing and run-arounds. 9 times out of 10, the buck actually stopped with XTRA anyway, but they were able to waste an awful lot of my time (I was charging for it so I wasn't particularly bummed - it was extremely lucrative hold-music for me) by bouncing me back and forth to the ISP, I'd have to prove to XTRA that the problem was at their end. But if XTRA provided the service I could righteously leave it at proving that it was not an equipment fault on the site, and then just say "So fix it, I don't care how, they're paying for this service you are not providing". For my own connection, the same thing happened a couple of times and I figured, stuff it, my time is too valuable for Telecom hold music that I'm not getting paid to listen to. Furthermore, the internet is my life-blood. I can't tolerate extended down time.

    Maybe things are different now, since LLU. Interested to hear other experiences out there.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 9186 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The back of a bloody envelope,

    Or to be enitrely cynical in quite another direction, perhaps Key has developed a touch of the Obamas and decided not to go the traditional route of trying to muzzle Kaye and Banks (good luck with that if you're ever inclined to try, is all I'll say) and pick your fights

    I'm thinking this also. I was hinting before that I think National has changed. They may still have some of the same old stupid ideas, but I think their way of going about them may be a bit different.

    I don't think Kaye gets converted to a fall gal by this. Quite the opposite, it would be a big win for her popularity in her electorate, whether she wins or loses with the Barrier. Banks is most likely thinking the same thing.

    Personally I'll be a lot more impressed by both of them if they do actually manage to turn this stupid, stupid initiative around, than if they fail to.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 9186 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The back of a bloody envelope,

    I suspect many of them thought National had changed. Others just thought Labour had gotten a little too comfortable. Hopefully, many of them are now regretting that decision.

    I actually thought both of those things were plausible, but it still wasn't enough to get me to vote for them.

    And I do think things have changed - these ideas may be coming thick and fast, but I still get the impression that National could furiously backpedal away from any that prove unpopular enough. That's improvement.

    I'd just as soon actually be debating good ideas instead, but at least we're debating the bad ideas instead of just sucking on them. For now.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 9186 posts Report Reply

  • Cracker: Wallywood,

    Elaboration, if you don't mind.

    The classic definition of knowledge requires that the point be true and believed, but also justified . So guessing doesn't fit. If someone guessed that Existentialism would be useful to you, did they really know?

    I've been timing how long it would take to get back to Avatar.

    Did you make a guess in advance too?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 9186 posts Report Reply

  • Cracker: Wallywood,

    Who knew it would come in handy?

    And is guessing right really knowledge? Absolutists probably think so.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 9186 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The back of a bloody envelope,

    Nothing like kicking the shit out of the down and out to take peoples attention away from the ram raid across the road....

    Hmmm good point, although in the case of Gt Barrier mining I think this whole thing might actually be partially targeted at drawing attention away from the Supercity. A foolish plan, it could backfire extremely badly, making local politicians extremely popular, and end up undermining the Supercity instead.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 9186 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The back of a bloody envelope,

    I don't think the 'moral gap' is something to concern ourselves with. We don't owe the world to be mined on account of importing minerals, any more than they owe us milk or lamb.

    The economic argument is stronger, of course. How much will it bring vs how much will it cost, most credibly in terms of tourism. I have to say, I doubt the impact on tourism would be significant.

    But the entire 'do we even want this as a nation?' question is a pretty big one. It can be seen as a wedge issue (which can go either way depending which side of the door you're on). It can be seen as a 'local rights vs the rights of industry' issue. Or just as 'can't we do something better than primary industry for once, ffs' issue.

    That's actually my own feeling on it. There's a huge poverty of vision in the whole idea. This mineral wealth certainly can give us some money in the short term, but that's it. Or it could sit there, accumulating value, and be saved up forever. As minerals become more rare it only becomes more valuable a resource. Is there really an urgent need to extract it now? I don't think so. Building sustainable industry would seem to be a much higher priority.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 9186 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The back of a bloody envelope,

    webweaver, I'd be amazed if it got to violence in the streets like in '81. If it even got close, the Nats would back down. Which would be a good outcome. I doubt their own voter base is a gimme on this issue. NIMBY might be more powerful and widespread than they realize.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 9186 posts Report Reply

  • Cracker: Wallywood,

    Must read me some Husserl. It seems highly likely I've been influenced by him far more than I've ever known.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 9186 posts Report Reply

  • Cracker: Wallywood,

    Aristotle probably likes too. The Golden Mean.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 9186 posts Report Reply

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