Posts by tussock

  • Speaker: Election 2014: Mental Health Policies,

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11317351

    A recent history of the man in question. Homeless on disability in Ashburton, a month sleeping rough with failing joints, only at WINZ in the first place because those on disability have to seek work now, like the shiftless lazy bastards we all know they are, only out of a home because privatising state houses is hilariously profitable and building them is a private sector matter.

    But of course, there's no DPS for the staff at WINZ. The front line that National cares so much about. Can't politicise it? How is that not political? The man was asking for help from MPs for over a month, in the fucking southern winter, with stuffed joints.


    Did I mention in another thread here how people were angry at the punitive shit this government puts on our poorest?

    Since Nov 2006 • 364 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Why we thought what we thought,

    I have no recall of being born on Earth. So I presume I was born on Mars unless proven otherwise.


    I have no recall of writing that either. So I presume it to be a forgery unless proven otherwise.

    Since Nov 2006 • 364 posts Report Reply

  • Legal Beagle: Crown appeals in criminal cases,

    True, Steve. AFAICT, our justice system says that a rich man losing 100% of his high-status executive job is a bigger punishment than a poor man losing 100% of his flexible hours minimum wage job. The judges probably aren't free to ignore that.

    In its majestic equality, the law forbids rich and poor alike to sleep under bridges, beg in the streets, and steal loaves of bread.

    Having said that, how many 17 year olds do we have on community service for minimal-injury fights in school? Because I'm imagining it's zero. Someone would have to point me to some convictions first, even the police trying a case, before I'd believe this particular one stood out from the crowd. Maybe there's some male-on-female cases could compare for the age difference?

    Can't really get outraged at someone not getting a penalty that no one gets anyway. Maybe I'm out of date, but most of my school would've been in court, at least one of them. Myself several times, no doubt, before the days of ubiquitous portable cameras to show my side of things.

    Since Nov 2006 • 364 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Earning Confidence,

    C'mon give me a break.

    What do you want? Another last chance? A story about how this is just a distraction for the Monday papers so people aren't talking about ... what?

    Good on Judith Collins for stepping down in the face of serious allegations of abusing her position. Or the people who answered the polls that said it was time, and also a good thing for everyone's office gossip next week, however it works at National.

    Poor them, the victim of a smear campaign of all things. Nice of that young Mr. Slater to keep all those emails for so many years though, all those screenshots of conversations, about all the smear campaigns, all that power he held over so many very powerful people's heads for fear he might leak it ... and then someone goes and does it for him while he's not even here to gloat. It's all so tragic. Or comedic. Either way, really.

    Since Nov 2006 • 364 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: UPDATED: Media Take: Election…,

    Eh, shitty misogynistic lyrics in a rap song: news at 11.

    I mean, I get your issue, Russell, Labour (and Green to some extent) are trying to run a positive campaign about how they are running a positive campaign, vs National's negative campaign, which they totally picked. It's similar in many ways to actual positive campaigns, but having random people on the internet get all off-message is more harmful to the tautological version.

    Having said that, it fails to express the obvious anger in society that goes totally unmentioned in the mainstream press. Fucking Christchurch, man, words fail me. The plan is to subsidise novice property developers. Really. Still hanging out for the invisible hand. Which is a metaphor for how God loves capitalism, and not an actual thing which exists and will help anyone. Fucking insurance companies still not paying out, that's your divine presence right there.

    Not to mention the classic National party 6% unemployment rate (plus single mums and all the sick and disabled now), falling real wages, the cute little trick in the budget of making health boards rent their hospital buildings from government to "balance the budget without health cuts" that are actually huge health cuts. Where labour talks about free doctors for more people and I'll still be paying $60-70, or rather just wont ever be going, and we all know how the long term there plays out.

    Not the corruption, the blessed ministerial family businesses and the surprisingly fortunate law changes and massive government subsidies for them, not the bridges and the fucking truck lobby, not the random $30 million dollar Bill finds every time some company helps them with their PR, just the ordinary gods-damned punitive bullshit they put on the poor and disadvantaged all the fucking time, and how it mounts up.


    And I get that sort of thing doesn't really help Labour's message here, which could be bad for actually getting National out of office, maybe. But you can't honestly expect the internet to not contain just a little bit of rage, and if some random guy sees the internet chanting "fuck John Key" and puts up his song to match it, that's what the internet is.

    Maybe vapid positivism just isn't going to cut it any more, even though it obviously did for Mr Hopey Changey in recent years, with technology having moved on, maybe there's never going to be just one message again.


    Or, you know, more National, more TV shows where journalists talk about how they feel for the poor in their nice suits, how maybe another gigantic subsidy to Fonterra will help single mums in Auckland while they're out looking for some zero-hour work to pay for the private daycare they're required to put their children into now, maybe save up enough for school one day (not).

    Since Nov 2006 • 364 posts Report Reply

  • Legal Beagle: Crown appeals in criminal cases, in reply to mpledger,

    https://www.courtsofnz.govt.nz/cases/r-v-m

    The finding seems pretty strait forward. Because there's no causative link between the assault and the death, both crown and defence agreed that the death cannot be used in sentencing.

    So it falls back on one kid finding his younger brother and another shaping up to fight, being egged on by a crowd, and he stepped in and quickly knocked the other one on his ass, then left. Assault with intent to injure.

    He's seen a court shrink for a year, he's never going to hit anyone again in his life, and the court does not believe he is a danger to society in any way. He's missed his NCEA, missed his last year of school, lost his peer relationships, and was under charge of manslaughter for 3 months.

    That's the only bit the judge can convict on. The issue being if that's worthy of conviction, on top of what's already happened to him, how would that conviction effect an 18 year old, as compared to the scale of the assault against everyday events. Proportion. Justice. Eh.

    Winkelmann J,

    But I wish to make a final remark. Nothing in these sentencing notes should be taken as an endorsement of your actions. Fights amongst school children may be common, but that does not mean we should tolerate them as a society. Every act carries with it the risk of unexpected, even grave harm. All too often the Courts deal with consequences of a single blow causing serious injury and even death. It may well be that schools should provide education as to the risks of fighting. This is especially so in a climate where so much violence, severe violence even, is portrayed in the media in drama programmes and even in sports on a daily basis. I hope that these events and other recent incidents are the necessary spur to action for that.

    quoth the judge, there's more good stuff in there too. Read it.



    Anyway, if kids tell you to bugger off, tell their school, their parents, their peers, the local shop owners, the local newspaper (letters to the editor and stuff), and before you know it there'll be those same kids turning up to apologise to you. Society is pretty wonderful if you let it know what's going on. P.S. some of the parents will tell you to bugger off too, that's something else you can let everyone know should it happen.

    Which is to say, use your words. Like M. should have known to, in a slightly better world.

    Since Nov 2006 • 364 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Didn't see that coming, in reply to Danyl Mclauchlan,

    National couldn't have asked for anything better than a reminder to wavering centre voters that the alternative to Key - dirty politics or not - is a government propped up by a bunch of nutty, angry activists.

    As against the ACT party? Who've discovered all science is wrong.
    The Conservatives? Who by comparison don't think anything is wrong.
    Winston? Who's discovered it's all China's fault, again.

    National? Who've declared everything they've ever done wrong is a massive left-wing conspiracy of epic proportions and also up is down. #Johnkey.

    How do they say it? "If you're not angry, you're not paying attention." IMP does seem to be chasing the angry and disenfranchised left vote, young folk and unemployed that get precisely fuck all from any other party for about twenty years now.

    And good on them, as the Greens continue their drive to serve the safe centre of reasonable people who don't have any actual problems. To some extent, you might almost consider it a huge conspiracy of former greenies to make the Greens look more reasonable by comparison. Eh? If you're a National voter or some other brand of crazy person.

    Since Nov 2006 • 364 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: In The Green Room,

    You can stop the whole OIA guessing-game and leaks system by pro-actively publishing everything that can normally be requested. Just make it part of briefing Ministers and such that a properly redacted copy is put on the public server.

    There's still data compilation stuff that could be requested, but if departments routinely did the sort of raw data dumps that, say, the census people put together, where the privacy concerns are all removed ahead of time, it should be workable.

    That gets pretty expensive of course, and anything else I can imagine would reveal the requests, which is a privacy issue again. You can't actually know if someone's queue-jumped without seeing everyone's requests, after all.

    Just getting the bastards to actually fill requests ASAP, that would be a big start. A lot of the departments delay until the last allowed minute, especially when they're cheating, to start the process of dragging out any complaints as long as possible. It's not supposed to work like that at all.

    Since Nov 2006 • 364 posts Report Reply

  • Up Front: Oh, God, in reply to "chris",

    Isn’t this charged charge of ‘indoctrination’ arguably applicable to a range of subjects, is it not merely just another facet of education itself.

    No. Absolutely not. There is a real world which people from different backgrounds can study independently and come to the same conclusions about. Spelling, math, science, all sorts. Nihilists are factually incorrect, so don't be a nihilist.

    Indoctrination is where you take a self-serving point of view about something without evidential backing and teach it so as to get other people to share that view. Often by misleading them about other views, and actively denying the validity of all others.

    It is in fact normally used as an antonym for "teaching". So we teach spelling and math, but we indoctrinate right-wing politics. Yes, the right, as the real world has a substantial left-wing bias.

    Obviously you indoctrinate religion, rather than teach it, what with it being not conducive to the sniff test. Which is to say, bullshit.

    Since Nov 2006 • 364 posts Report Reply

  • Up Front: Oh, God, in reply to linger,

    Let us ensure that no group is disadvantaged by our actions and decisions.

    There's a few lessons in the problems of Pareto efficiency that's going to run into very quickly. Comes down to Arrow's Impossibility Theorem, that there's a lot of possible social choice sets where every possible outcome disadvantages the majority of people, let alone just one group.

    What you might try is "ensure that no substantive group is consistently disadvantaged in areas where it can be shown they are already disadvantaged." Which you might think is really weak, but it's probably still impossible in the real world, because there's so many possible groups and contradictory definitions and sensations of advantage.

    Even junk like "don't be Evil" doesn't seem to mean anything once things get rolling. After all, we're already doing something somewhat similar, so the new thing can't be Evil either, because we've already defined ourselves as not being Evil.


    Wouldn't it be nice if they'd just promise not to loot the place? Not that it would stop them, obviously, English is far too fuzzy of a language, "not stuffing all this money in my pocket would be them looting us", but nice anyway.

    Since Nov 2006 • 364 posts Report Reply

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