Posts by James Butler

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  • Up Front: This is a Photograph of Me,

    I should mention that the few times I've been knocked off my bicycle (or seen others knocked off) it's been due to the fatal mistake of using the cycle lane. I'm never trying that again.

    Auckland • Since Jan 2009 • 790 posts Report Reply

  • Up Front: This is a Photograph of Me,

    This is the kind of thing non-drivers would think. Without directly experiencing driving, the error in that is probably not apparent. You most likely did not put yourself in a position that the driver could see you easily.

    As a cyclist, motorcyclist and driver (another impending-parenthood-induced driver, no less), I think this is getting dangerously close to blame-the-victim. While there are certainly things a [motor]cyclist can do to improve their visibility to car drivers, in the end no matter where you "position yourself" it's likely that one day a driver will fail to see you at an inconvenient time, and it will be no less their fault.

    I'd say car drivers would learn more from cycling and motorcycling around a large city for a few months than vice-versa...

    Auckland • Since Jan 2009 • 790 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: "Creative" and "Flexible",

    Where as in the whole 600 years of the western hemisphere as defined by classsical music. There weren't, if any, women, blacks, hispanics and certainly no Kiwi's in its probably first 500 years.

    Umm, the part about women is a reasonable point, but the rest would be like me complaining about the lack of Chinese artists performing Delta Blues in the 30's. And even that's assuming that your definition of 'Hispanic' doesn't, like, include Spain.

    Auckland • Since Jan 2009 • 790 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: "Creative" and "Flexible",

    What if it was a country and western music station we were subsidising ? That has just as much cultural capital as classical and would you defend that if you weren't so much into C&W ?

    I love much country music, and it undoubtably has a huge amount of "cultural capital", but you're saying 60 years of the music of one end of one country has as much "cultural capital" as 600 years of the music of the entire western hemisphere?

    Auckland • Since Jan 2009 • 790 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: "Creative" and "Flexible",

    Is there much gospel music on ConcertFM?

    Messiah?

    Auckland • Since Jan 2009 • 790 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: "Creative" and "Flexible",

    Not to mention how the liberal Left in this country has bought pretty much wholesale the neoconservative arguments about trimming the fat and using the market to support anything that moves.

    I wonder if this is fallout from the historical accident in which New Zealand's liberal Left and neoconservative Right were the same people for a few topsy-turvy years...

    Auckland • Since Jan 2009 • 790 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Auckland: where only one man votes,

    I do not represent the ACT Party in any manner whatsoever while espousing opinions on this blog

    I think that's for us to decide.

    Strong words. Is everyone posting on PAS required to wear all their hats? Or just those chosen by a quorum of senior members?

    Auckland • Since Jan 2009 • 790 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Standards Matter,

    Do universities even take individual grades at 7th form/year 12 (or whatever) in to account anymore for entry into specific papers?

    Depends on the paper. I remember MATH 113 as the one with the entrance requirement (in 2002) - I just squeezed in (thanks to massive scaling of the Bursary exam results, but that's another rant), and failed the paper miserably in a year when I got B+ to A in everything else. Protip: the requirement was there for a reason.

    Auckland • Since Jan 2009 • 790 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Standards Matter,

    the Prussian Officer selection matrix

    You seem to be implying that energetic + competent is the optimum - in the version I know, energetic + competent is good for administrators, but for officers in command you need lazy + competent.

    Auckland • Since Jan 2009 • 790 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Do Want?,

    I don't know what Apple have been doing with CUPS behind the scenes, but at least they've sprinkled some UI magic on the old puke-green web admin page.

    Auckland • Since Jan 2009 • 790 posts Report Reply

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