Posts by Tom Semmens

  • Hard News: Potency and purity,

    They've predicted a massive mental health epidemic of depression from the abuse of MDMA for twenty years. However, this seems inconsistent with the lack of observational evidence to support it - AKA The Fermi paradox.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1877 posts Report Reply

  • Envirologue: Swamp Monsters – the…,

    This seems to me to be the perfect coming together of two distinct attitudes that have characterised this government from day one. First, an aggressively, retroactive, 19th century view of the environment, where a clean environment is seen as a luxury we cannot afford, and the value “locked up” in namby-pamby conservation measures is to released, exploited and squeezed dry for economic gain, even where that gain might come at the cost of fiflthy rivers, drained and destroyed wetlands and be of the crudest kind to the fewest people and at the greatest environmental cost. Thank Christ we never struck oil under this lot. The second is class-based cronyism, hidden behind a cavalier disregard for the law and US Republican style attack on over-sight agencies. The Key government, like the Bolger/Shipley one, is leaving behind a massive social and democratic deficit of under-funded and under-resourced public sector agencies. This government is increasingly emboldened by having a supine and superficial media that largely parrots the government line. I shudder to think what damage Shipley could have done with a corporate media as captured by pro-government plutocrats as it is now; while actual, third world style corruption, the corruption that festers in countries like Malaysia and Indonesia where the media is cowed and pro-government, is probably now already upon us.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1877 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: Unity, success: Chicken, egg?,

    Interesting stuff Tom, though I’m mildly disappointed to find no mention of Flaxmere

    Flaxmere never existed. It’s been erased and quietly forgotten, like a third world shanty town that offended the sensibilities of the local nobs who peddle Hawkes Bay to the like minded for it’s “lifestyle”. Originally built on “useless” river shingles, Flaxmere is being slowly bulldozed to make way for vineyards and erased from the lexicon. “There is no third world poverty in Hawkes Bay, oh and have you seen Sir Paul Holmes house?” It s called modern New Zealand, which scarily resembles 19th century Britain.

    Amalgamation will only happen when the locals are allowed to come up with a plan that assuages the multi-generational distrust between the two cities. My view is a united council with the same number of councillors as now and with a 30 year gerrymander to ensure both the old cities have an equal number of councillors would be a start. Then in thrity years, review the whole thing.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1877 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: Unity, success: Chicken, egg?, in reply to tony j ricketts,

    one thing that troubled me was his use of the Napier/Hastings merger issue, where the more numerous and wealthier Napier doesn’t want a bar of merging with the less numerous and poorer Hastings.

    Hastings district has a bigger population than Napier and includes posh Havelock North and much of the local squatocracy in it’s ranks. Animosity between Napierand Hastings goes back a long way, made worse by Labour voting Napier, which was near bankruptcy after inadequate government support for it’s rebuild post the 1931 earthquake from the conservative government of the time (hey Christchurch!) having it’s debts written off by the 1935 Labour government while conservative voting Hatings did not. Then when the Napier hospital was closed Hastings did a nice little dolchstoßlegende and supported the governments consolidation to their ugly little shithole in Hastings.

    The whole amalgamation issue though is not just muddied by historic grievances. The long and deep and justified mistrust by Napier of Hastings has been aggravated by the outrageous behaviour of Hasting mayor Lawrence Yule, who clearly sees relatively debt free Napier as the answer to Hasting’s fat debt laden ass. Yule’s approach all along has been to try and use this governments draconian and anti-democratic local government amalgamation legislation to ram through a forced merger. For many Napier residents with long memories (and believe me, we have long memories down there) this is just another short termist dolchstoßlegende from a desperate mayor and debt laden council. Personally, I am going to vote against the local government equivalent of being tied to a corpse and thrown into Hawkes Bay.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1877 posts Report Reply

  • Envirologue: Choose Wisely, Grasshopper:…,

    That speaks to the very different nature of the core Green voter who, more than any other, is characterised by a deep ethical, philosophical and political commitment

    Such an airy dismissal for the poor old lifetime members of Labour and National, with their photos of past leaders on the wall, who have crewed cake stalls and handed out leaflets for 50-60-70 years!! Presumably they, like everyone else outside the enlightened Ba’ku of the Green party, are merely brutes whose anachronistic thinking hasn’t left the steam age?

    This is the sort of self-reverential tosh that Greens like to imagine about themselves, but it is important self-reverential tosh because it points to a key reason they will never get more than 10% of the vote – they all to often come across to most voters as complete toss-pots.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1877 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Friday Music: They even taxed…,

    Quite excited about New York based internet stars Scott Bradlee’s Postmodern Jukebox coming our way in August. A revolving ensemble of 50 musicians and singers doing re-arrangements of modern pop songs as old school genres, of a quality and sass you just never get to see in this country. viz:

    or here is Haley Reinhart (one time third place getter on American Idol, the mind boggles given the talentless dross we got here) fantastic cover of Radiohead’s “Creep”.

    Bit of thread hijack, but they are a live act and they'll be in NZ.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1877 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Mediaworks: The only horizon…,

    The Glucina attack piece on Amanda Bailey and now the obvious political payback on Campbell live. The Plutocrats must be confident, they are giving up even pretending.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1877 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Mediaworks: The only horizon…, in reply to Sacha,

    Personally, I think the dog's breakfast that is RNZ afternoons could do with Campbell. Simon Mercep is OK, but to me his style is more after 10pm.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1877 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Mediaworks: The only horizon…,

    Kathryn Ryan might be worried....

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1877 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Synthetic cannabis: it just…,

    If anyone was still in any doubt that our psychoactive drug laws passed and lauded as “world leading” are nothing but a giant con job – a designed-to-fail law that is a smokescreen behind which a cynical government with no intention of ever allowing anything to become legal can hide – then surely the triumphalism and contempt which Peter Dunne didn’t even bother to hide when discussing Matt Bowden’s bankruptcy has removed that doubt.

    I have always maintained this new law was absurd and designed to make it easier to ban, not legalise. Bowden’s demise is the final nail in the coffin of the hope of those who sincerely engaged and believed the government. It was nothing but a confidence trick all along.

    After watching Dunne’s pleasure in putting out of business someone who he didn’t like I felt queasy and slightly ill. Whether or not you approve of Bowden’s business practices a businessman who embarks on a venture based on a belief the government believes in the rule of law and it’s own legislation who is then bankrupted at least partially by a government that lied all along about it’s intentions should alarm us all.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1877 posts Report Reply

Last ←Newer Page 1 2 3 4 5 188 Older→ First