Posts by tussock

  • Speaker: TPP, eh?,

    Yay, life plus 70 years.

    Because it's super-important that people who died in the 1950s can have some shitty heartless multinational wreck your creative works by claiming you've violated their copyright (you know, because you can sort of make out a radio playing in that house they walk past for eight seconds, or glimpse a logo of something out of focus in the background) in order to encourage the creativity of ... corporate lawyers.

    Creative people? Sorry, it's called work-for-hire, you get nothing.

    TPMs! Yay! That's where you buy a game and they install spyware on your computer, as a "technological protection measure". Telling people that it exists and how to get rid of it will become a criminal offence. Huzzah. You know what a TPM is? It's whatever the fuck they want it to be, so good luck.

    Who needs medicine anyway. Generics? That's like exactly the same thing only cheaper; but why buy a pill for 20¢ when you can pay $10,000, or whatever the fuck they choose to charge for their extended monopoly on your well being. For the drugs discovered, almost all the time, in state-funded research labs, and then sold to the highest bidder. With the actual creative people doing work-for-hire and getting nothing.

    And of course Labour will vote for it. It's a "trade" bill. Labour and National have voted together on "trade" bills forever, their main point of difference is still if the top tax rate should be 33% or 37% (and thus the rate at which public services will be cut and replaced with private for-profit statute monopolies and the infinite glory of user-pays, where they mean poor people paying and giant companies getting billions in handouts).

    Since Nov 2006 • 532 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: Rugby, Racing and Emotions,

    Danielle, to answer your rhetorical, the rugby conversions like to point out that it's deeply commercialised façade of things that barely exist any more because that never really gets mentioned in the MSM.

    On account of the MSM being advertising based, and rather being a part of the non-problem. It's not harmful, as such, it's just a weird thing that there's this huge myth perpetrated by the media (who we all trust to keep us informed, to some extent) and folk are going to talk about that.

    The fact that this great fake story of "Rugby really matters" ends up with obscene amounts of public money spent on it is also going to get on people's nerves. Not as much as that Sky City deal in Auckland maybe, but still.

    I know I go on about it, but the local council in Dunedin used to have plans for things, the ancient sewers, the interesting roads, the flood systems that don't work, doing something about the encroaching sea, missing public transport links, none of that will happen in my lifetime now because they built a tiny rugby ground that they can't use most of the time instead (rather than spend 10% as much to improve the one they already had). For "our" world cup. Be nice if people woke up, eh.

    Since Nov 2006 • 532 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: The government's Rules…, in reply to Sacha,

    Helen Kelly has pointed out that the Minister was pushing those ludicrous myths herself on TV in June, to justify said taskforce.

    You know, it could just be that the minister was ignorant, believed all the rubbish going around their social circles about government was true, and sought rightly to fix it. Only to be told it was all rubbish by a proper investigative body. Oops.

    I mean, it's true that good builders don't really need inspected all the time, it's just also true that we have good builders because they get inspected all the time and don't really have any choice in the matter. When the inspection rules got softened, just a bit, half the new houses went rotten, but that doesn't happen any more, so ....

    Like the old mines inspectors. Hadn't had a mine explosion in years, what was even the point of all those inspections? Hmm? Oh, right.

    Since Nov 2006 • 532 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Friday Music: Not just…,

    You want an artist to get money? Hand them cash, walk away happy.

    Content in general is no longer valuable. Weird, huh, but there it is. Wikipedia has shown that people will produce better content for free than anyone can figure out how to sell, other than on one or two big locked hardware platforms (Microsoft, Apple, Sony, Nintendo). Interestingly, people really want to pay you, it's just not normally feasible to connect that with the content any more.

    So either you licence your music for the things where money still buys content, like a Playstation game or a Hollywood movie, or you sell yourself and use the music as an advertisement for you.

    Merch is ... limited. There's only so much room in people's houses, big fans might easily buy everything and run out of ways to give you money. Years ago the webcomic industry discovered giving it all away sold more books. Then they discovered that letting people pay to have the books made in the first place sold even more books. Now they've discovered you can just ask people to pay you to make the free comics you were going to make anyway, and that makes even more money than all the rest of it put together, and also helps you sell more books.

    Obviously music is produced in longer format than webcomics, but there's folk posting pretty crap vlogs on youtube backed by Patreon to the tune of thousands of dollars per week and there's musicians putting live stuff on youtube too. I'm sure that could work for musicians.

    The usual add goes: I only put up one of these a month (week, whatever), because money. Pay me more to put each one up, I can do it more often. Do that with live stuff, random jams, get a fricken unique domain up and advertise your existence, tour dates, places to buy, email lists to alert people that you're doing things they can pay your for like they want to.

    Post free shit, get a following, and ask the people who like you for more money so you can post more free shit. Sell autographed CDs, sell personalised one-off jams, sell the shirt your wore at that concert. People want a bit of that magic awesome in their lives, so it'll rub off on them.

    Not through a fucking service that people call generous at 15%! Stop giving away 85% of your revenue, you fucking idiots. Kickstarter takes 5% and hosts all your adds and deals with all the money for you, with no up front costs and you set a minimum for following up on it at all, Patreon takes 5% for people paying you to do what you were doing anyway. You know who takes 85%? Fucking crooks.

    Since Nov 2006 • 532 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: A week on from the housing controversy,

    /Russel Brown.

    there is an issue of historic proportions looming with respect to Chinese capital outflows

    Really? Is that ... extrapolation? Or just ... random ass-pulls.

    Because I recall there being an issue of Belgian dentists, or Japanese widows, or Dutch dairy farmers, or bankers from Sydney, or ... let's say, everyone in NZ who isn't Māori. I mean, if you wanted to talk about historic proportions of capital flows, there'd be an interesting place to start, surely, the ten of trillions of dollars in capital stolen from Māori by imperial conquest, that we're all disturbed about now because it's not Europeans stealing it all, it's just normal and lawful everyday commerce with the CHINESE!!!!!* ... you know Kiwis are buying a bunch of stuff in China, too, right?

    And not at all, say, "people whose names sound Chinese". Which is historically associated with some really nasty racist stuff in this country's history, but isn't what is happening here, even though it obviously is.

    Since Nov 2006 • 532 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: A week on from the housing controversy,

    /Rob Salmond.

    For Labour, the distinction was always about speculation from *offshore* Chinese

    He only ever pitted *offshore* Chinese

    Our discussion last week focused on Chinese

    No, Labour never used "Chinese" of mean "foreign."

    1: You forgot "offshore" sometimes, in your reactionary stuff there.
    2: But you did use it to mean "bad", when combined with "offshore".

    First, we never used ethnicity as a proxy for nationality. Never.

    You used people's names, common to their ethnicity, and then compared that with local demographics to hang shit on Chinese nationals. That is using ethnicity as a proxy for nationality, you clown. Stop digging, Rob.

    Makes very explicit the distinction between "Chinese NZers" on the one hand, and "foreign money" on the other.

    No, Rob. "Chinese money". You're not worried about Chinese kiwis, just the Chinese. Not anyone else, just the Chinese. Chinese, is what you're worried about, and think everyone else should worry about, because they're Chinese, but not Chinese kiwis. Very important distinction, not at all racist, you're just really worried about the Chinese.

    Nobody should read anything in our data analysis as being critical of Kiwis who happen to have Chinese ethnicity.

    Indeed, you're really attacking the Chinese. That couldn't possibly be racism and it's such a clear distinction: Chinese bad, Chinese kiwis good. Really, they should just all change their names to something European and this problem would all go away. Then we could get on with hating the right kind of Chinese, couldn't we Rob.

    Since Nov 2006 • 532 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: Identification strategy: Now…,

    That was far too big and you should not allow comments that long, Russell.

    But we're "not racist" in employment, "not racist" in justice, "not racist" in education, "not racist" in our wars, our news, or our working out where people are from by the spelling of their name. Not even racist in immigration policy, or medical licensing, or anything really. Our endless wars of "cultural superiority" abroad (oh, gods, they mutilate female genitals! how cruel, so unlike our useful and practical mutilation of male genitals) do not make us threatening, nor are our (white man) allies tens of thousands of nuclear weapons any sort of threat of any kind to any one at all (just don't let them get any, ever, or watch out!).

    But you know what I'm seeing here that pisses me off? "Oh, they might not be wrong." It's like we're having a discussion about the accuracy of Mein Kamph in relation to the occupations of Jewish people, and how it "might not be wrong".

    Labour's the next biggest political party to the government, and I can now count neither of them who don't indulge in casual race-baiting. It's really horrible when Winston does it, it's really pitiful when ACT does it, but it's really fucking scary when Labour are refusing to walk away from this horrible shit and having their media people come out and defend it instead.

    Blaming minority groups for significant government problems, when they're in opposition and can just blame the fucking government! Yes this gets more press, and that is a very, very bad thing.

    Since Nov 2006 • 532 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: Identification strategy: Now…,

    We need to have a conversation about racism here.

    What it looks like now, in a world where "no one is racist", because they're all so careful about what they say in public. How because "no one is racist" all the bad things that happen to minority groups are obviously all their own fault, as say the "no one is racist"s.

    Where the Labour party of New Zealand says we need to talk about house prices because "Chinese people", like it's fucking well 1890 again, rather that a gigantic pyramid scheme built on decades of failed state policy from both major parties, who coincidentally are made up of people with nearly all their money in the housing and land markets.

    How judges hand out longer sentences to Māori for the same crimes, because they need to get the message out, to Māori, about them being over-represented in prison. That sort of "no one is racist". How the police take more cases against Māori because it's an easier conviction, because they're obviously just more guilty, or so say the "no one is racist"s.

    The bit where both major parties just a few years ago argued over the correct way to steal trillions of dollars of land from Māori, when it was discovered that no one had ever bought much of it, so legally it was still theirs, and what if they charged rent when the government could sell it and let a white guy charge rent instead. How this National government is still shuffling crown-held Māori land into different departments so they can legally sell it despite it not legally being theirs to sell.

    How white religious people who go nuts and shoot a bunch of folk are strange and crazy and not like all us and brown religious people who go nuts and shoot a bunch of folk are terrorists and just like all them. But not in a racist way.

    How we're in the middle of a fucking war in the middle east, still, with our SAS on the front lines, targeting cities for big-ass bombs, because obviously levelling Fallujah again is ... not racist or anything.

    And really, those people we're bombing, they're terrible, it's all their fault, we're really trying to save them, with our giant bombs, because they keep shooting at us, just because we're in their country dropping bombs on them, like crazy people. And not because we're racist.

    Except Māori don't get the same jobs, don't get into the same schools, do get arrested where a Pakeha would get diversion, do get longer sentences, do get paid less in the same jobs, do get hired last and fired first (which isn't racism, you see, it's fair, and that's not racist either).

    And the forgivers who buy all our houses are Australians, just like forever. Most of whom are also New Zealanders to a good degree, the same as the immigrants from other countries who come here and buy a house. There's an Irishman owns a whole town down here, bought the lot well over market rates. Owns all the shops, businesses, houses, and if you live there you work for him and rent from him, and certainly nothing ill to say of the man, or you might find yourself not living there after all. Literal lord of his domain. Did labour care? No, fine example of foreign investment. And not because they're racist. Big German bloke, no problem. But a Chinese company (actually owned by a kiwi, married to an MP of all things) bought a farm? HOLY SHITBALLS! And not because racism.

    We just suddenly need to talk about Asians buying a house. Because if this keeps up they'll own the place.
    And it's not racist saying that, because "no one is racist". It's just real.

    our base method was to estimate people’s ethnicity

    Remembering, of course, that "no one is racist"s do things like that. Estimate people's ethnicity and start making sweeping generalisations on what are basically anecdotes and then complain about all the [minority group] and their [legal activity] and how it's associated with [unpopular thing].

    Since Nov 2006 • 532 posts Report Reply

  • OnPoint: My last name sounds Chinese,

    Clearly not intended as one, eh Sacha.

    You know who drives up the price of houses in Auckland though? The government does, stupid, Labour and National both. Low interest rates, low monetary inflation, high capital inflation, massive and basically unlimited rent subsidies, free money to do up rental places, free money to buy houses under ~$200k (guess what no liveable house is priced under?), tax write-offs for housing investments, trust laws to shield them from everything, and no tax on the capital profits at the end of the day.

    Returns on investment, in housing or land speculation in general, are a couple orders of magnitude higher than anything else in the country, once you get into high leverage promoted by the state through banking regulation. Buy 1 with 10% down, wait for the price to go up 10% (a year), leverage the capital gains to buy another (hey, 10% down, for free!), as long as the state keeps paying out the ever-increasing rents for the poor folk living in them all, you're golden. Five years later you own a free house, or you just keep gambling on whomever is in government not wanting to burst that particular bubble.

    But yeah, sure, blame a minority group. Because you might not be wrong about that in some alternate universe where the state doesn't regulate everything involved in setting the price of houses. Assholes.

    Since Nov 2006 • 532 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: Bridges swims in troubled waters, in reply to izogi,

    To me, whether things have changed or not, the last few years of government have demonstrated that we seriously need to consider options for more binding constraints on lawmakers and Ministers.

    No. See, National would write binding constraints that said ministers weren't allowed to vote for tax or service increases, and Labour would come in and point out that the previous government of New Zealand cannot bind the current government of New Zealand in any way, shape, or form and re-write the cabinet manual to suit themselves.

    The only thing National's doing incorrectly is refusing to publicly state the rules it really operates under. One might suggest that's because they like winning elections, and lying about that just works better.

    One might even suggest their real operations manual requires that everyone lie to cover each others corrupt asses all the time. Like they do.

    The trick for making ministers behave is thus voting for the opposition. We were within about 1% of doing it last time, maybe get 'em next time.

    Since Nov 2006 • 532 posts Report Reply

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