Posts by B Jones

  • Hard News: Poor Choices, in reply to Emma Hart,

    At the least I would say, don't do it while the death is fresh, and don't do it if it's someone you don't know and never met.

    Don't do it without the most affected people's consent. I've seen family members wrest some purpose out of their loss by making sure others don't make the same mistakes - it's powerful and valuable and their call to make, not a stranger's.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 724 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: TPP: Error Correction,

    We may be unaware as to whether a piece of legislation is consistent with the tpp, but we know that legislation exists and can decide whether we like it or not.

    I don't think a yes/no rubber stamp at the end of the process is an ideally consultative way to do things, but it's not unheard of or unique. I'm sure there are human rights examples that govts have signed up to without extensive consultation.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 724 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: TPP: Error Correction,

    I'm not arguing it's either, presuming it's happening. Perhaps they've seen a slice of something relevant to them. But if, say, fonterra did a presentation to the nz govt about what they'd like the TPP to look like, I bet they'd be unhappy if a copy showed up on nestle's desk the next day. Whatever is happening here, there are legitimate reasons in a number of circumstances for individuals and companies to deal with the government in privacy. That's why there are exemptions under the OIA for commercial negotiations and so on.

    I don't have a view on whether the tpp is being negotiated well or badly, but I don't think confidentiality at this stage is wrong in principle. If some non-govt interests have greater access to information and influence than others, that's potentially a problem. But it's hard to find the balance between informed decisionmaking and scrupulous disinterest.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 724 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: TPP: Error Correction,

    And also, countries can withdraw from treaties if they want. It's actually really hard for a government to do something that binds future governments.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 724 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: TPP: Error Correction, in reply to nzlemming,

    Keeping the background negotiations secret for four years is not the same as keeping the details of the agreement secret. The background's interesting but not enforceable, just like draft legislation isn't enforceable.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 724 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: TPP: Error Correction,

    The guts of it seems to come down to what level of openness the TPP will have before it has any impact. Presumably its terms will be made public once it's signed: it won't have any impact before that. At some point after that, the govt will put its terms into effect: some of those will need to be legislated while others won't. I'd expect, say, disestablishing pharmac would mean changing the legislation that sets it up. Anything needing to be legislated has an element of public consultation to it. Parliament can always choose not to pass legislation - take it or leave it is still a choice of sorts. It's the decisions that don't need legislation that could become faits accomplis. The ballot box every three years is the only restraint against that.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 724 posts Report Reply

  • Cracker: How Media Made me a Bad Person.,

    This puts me in mind of the whole Smarm vs snark thing. Perhaps the other side of the coin is the relentless empty positivity of the promotional press releases flowing into newsrooms.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 724 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Making it up on smacking, in reply to Moz,

    Someones’ right to continue producing and killing children is one that should be curtailed, I think we agree on that?

    Killing, yes. Producing, no. Once someone's in jail for a reasonable term for the latter, the former becomes a bit academic anyway. I'm struggling to think of an example where it would be a useful addition to the current penalties and interventions available.

    The cost of surgery? If it's not with my consent, it's assault. If it's permanently disabling, it's grievous bodily harm. You cannot compare consented surgery with unconsented, You don't hear me saying prison, it's not so bad, I had a bad time on a cruise ship once. Parents choosing cosmetic surgery for their kids is tricky. I don't support it, but where do you draw the line? Ear piercing?

    Now that I’ve had another go at answering your question, back to my question above: I’d love to hear a defense of the state forcibly denying a child their right to access their parents (article 9.1) put in human rights terms.

    I'll leave that to someone who understands the question. I can't think of how the state denies children access to their parents (coerced, closed adoption, maybe, in the 60s?) or why anyone would want to defend that, or how that would be possible in human rights terms. I've got no idea what your point is.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 724 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Making it up on smacking, in reply to Moz,

    Was my paraphrasing of that quote incorrect? Could you restate it to make my error clear?

    Fair point. It might be splitting hairs a bit, but "not an acceptable solution to anything" isn't quite the same in my mind to "it is never ok to forcibly sterilise anyone". The first phrase has a sense of utility - what problem are you trying to fix, and is that an appropriate way to achieve that - and an implication that the "anything" is a subset of real problems that exist today. The second is an absolute statement of rights under any possible circumstance.

    As I've illustrated above, in our current legal and ethical system it is an acceptable solution to a small range of life-threatening health problems in an emergency situation. But we weren't talking about that, then, and the "anything" I originally intended was limited to a criminal justice/social dysfunction context.

    I'm looking forward to hearing your argument as to why chopping hands off thieves is preferable indefinitely imprisoning them. Or why forced sterilisation is different to chopping off hands. Because at this stage it sounds like the argument of someone who thinks that forced sterilisation can be achieved by a waving of hands rather than inpatient surgery under anaesthetic.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 724 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Making it up on smacking, in reply to Moz,

    But faced with a flat “it is never ok to sterilise someone” argument

    Where? That's not the same as noting that forced sterilisation is generally considered a human rights violation.

    I thought it easier to establish that there are conditions under which sterilisation is a good idea.

    Again, where?

    I'll make it easy for you and provide some actual examples of unconsented sterilisation there's room to be ambivalent about. The easiest is someone is having a placental abruption or similar obstetric emergency, is bleeding profusely and will die without a hysterectomy and there hasn't been an opportunity to seek consent. Harder is someone who doesn't have the capacity to make their own medical decisions but will suffer if they keep a working reproductive system, in the eyes of the people who make their medical decisions for them. Moving along the continuum, some people might think it's justified if a patient has such health issues they'll put their life in danger if they have further pregnancies, but it's still wrong if the patient hasn't consented to the procedure. It sails firmly into wrongness territory when it's applied as a punishment rather than a harm minimisation strategy, and when there are other, less harmful strategies that minimise the harm. Is that utilitarian enough?

    I'm not sure what point there is having a representative government if nothing they do is democratic unless it would pass a plebiscite.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 724 posts Report Reply

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