Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Angry and thrilled about Arie

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  • Rich of Observationz,

    Do that firm also offer Ruby on Rails training?

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4484 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    Also the Minister must have within their warrant the ability to intercede in situations where it is apparent that Police conduct is demonstrably counter to the judicial system. Police ability to prosecute here in NZ needs to be scrutinised.

    That’s a terrible idea.

    Better to have the IPCA actually have some teeth.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6221 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to Kyle Matthews,

    I don't think it's terrible in general for politicians to have extensive powers. But I'll agree that it can be misused, and is probably being misused by Collins. It's on us (netizens, as pretty much the new real fourth estate) to make sure that people know about it. To think that she was once my lawyer, and actually believed in the rights of defendants, so my mate who worked for her tells me.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8659 posts Report Reply

  • merc, in reply to Kyle Matthews,

    I don't think it's a terrible idea, Police have power to prosecute here that is complex and not at all transparent, they are also singularly allowed to use private lawyers for the prosecution, this can be open to abuse.
    Who or what are the IPCA and could you please explain further why in this context it would be better that they had some teeth?

    Since Dec 2006 • 2471 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to merc,

    Who or what are the IPCA and could you please explain further why in this context it would be better that they had some teeth?

    The Independent Police Complaints Authority. The problem as I see it is not that it lacks teeth, but that it can only operate retrospectively, when it is the current actions of the police that need attention, now.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 19019 posts Report Reply

  • merc,

    Ah, thank you. I am really concerned about the actual process Police prosecution involves here in NZ. As I read upthread, how could the Police arrest (the first step in a prosecution?) Arie without then ascertaining who the property owners were?
    http://www.police.govt.nz/resources/2007/inquiry-into-police-conduct/
    This is interesting to me in it's obvious bias toward certain conduct, I am interested in Police conduct towards the public, my fear is that with the existing structure serious abuse of power can result.

    Since Dec 2006 • 2471 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca, in reply to Islander,

    Compulsory torch? I also always have a lighter .my Tardis that lives mostly on my shoulder weighs enough to use for defence should I be required to swing it.

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6341 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca, in reply to merc,

    I am pretty sure though that Collins has recently given the Police more powers but bit busy to dig it up so this could also be an example of what the police now have over us legally.

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6341 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca, in reply to Rich of Observationz,

    Did you get the star gazer app? It's fantastic. Inspired me to shop for a telescope now.

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6341 posts Report Reply

  • Islander, in reply to Sofie Bribiesca,

    Two actually Sofie! One on each keyring (home keys are separate from vehicle/other keys.) One torch is v.small, the other tiny. Both LEDs...
    Annnd, greenhead & lifeboat matches with striker box-sides held together in foil with a lovely inflammable rubber-band-

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • merc,

    Since Dec 2006 • 2471 posts Report Reply

  • 81stcolumn,

    Until last night I had convinced myself that I didn't do the gear/bag thing. Sat in the indoor bike training class I attend in the evenings I realised I was the only person in the room who had brought a pump, three towels and a full full toolkit in a large plastic box. It's indoors FFS, if something breaks I can stop pedalling and go home.......

    Nawthshaw • Since Nov 2006 • 728 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz, in reply to Sofie Bribiesca,

    Google Star map? It's neat - but would be better if you could see the actual sky through the screen - but the camera might be too low ASA/res for that.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4484 posts Report Reply

  • Ross Mason,

    Um...R of O....

    The point of the star map is to SHOW you what the sky would look like and the screen (and google star map) identifies the stars. You point the screen at the sky and the display shows what the sky should look like.

    Using the camera will just show the sky it is pointed to. All sorts of image ID/ pattern recognition software would then be required.

    And another advantage of not using the camera is that you can still tell where the stars are (and planets BTW) even with cloud cover! So if you have a cloudy night then at least you know where to look to find the object of choice.

    Upper Hutt • Since Jun 2007 • 1502 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz,

    I was thinking more of a sort of Augumented Reality feature (AR) that showed you what the stars you could see in the sky were.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4484 posts Report Reply

  • Andre Alessi,

    OK, having just tried out Google Star Map-it's my favourite thing I have discovered today! I particularly like "Night Mode".

    Devonport, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 862 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca, in reply to Andre Alessi,

    So have you got the swaying grass wallpaper that has a twilight and all the stars come out in the evening? I just lurve that one :)

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6341 posts Report Reply

  • tussock, in reply to Russell Brown,

    The “dissociative event” wording is helpful for me in turn, thanks.

    Yeh, and naming your demons is a term for that feeling. Learning more about Asperger's has been a slow process of understanding all the strangeness in my life. I suspect I'm done with that now, as I can't recall any strange things that remain unexplained.

    I mean, I'd heard of that, but I've never felt "dissociated". The things I'm trying to do just stop happening, no matter how much I want otherwise. There's a lot of times in my life when there was a form to fill in, or a door to open, a box to tick, and I just could not do it, and I could never explain it when I tried (often getting stuck then too). Shit, mid-conversation, something big comes up, brain lock. Plenty of words, none coming out. Not often, but always important to me.


    1: Work tirelessly at interesting project.
    2: Miss something important because head stuck in 1.
    3: Try to fix 2, but freeze, unable to explain 1 or 2.
    4: Give up on 2 in confusion, try to stay away from 1.
    5: Repeat until no more 1's.

    6: Depression (sucks).

    7: Understand 1, 2, & 6. "It has a name! It's a real thing!"

    8: Understand the rest. "Oh, all that too. Right. Bugger."



    As to Arie, people with Asperger's can be prone to breaking laws in order to pursue their main interest, as long as no one gets hurt or loses out (no one mention copyright infringement, eh). Saving things that were going to be destroyed if not retrieved is a bit like saving a drowning child; would you let a law against swimming stop you, or instead feel compelled to help?

    NB: not wise to try and save drowning children by swimming in flood waters. Use a long pole or other material, get on your cell phone for emergency assistance.

    Lighting fixtures are likely really important to Arie, he'll probably know everything there is to know about them, and be very familiar with any associated science, engineering, and history, and these ones will have some noteworthy place in all that.

    The cops are just stuck in that mindset were they think they're the only thing that saves us all from going feral and burning everything on the way to a mass suicide, which is historically very inaccurate.

    Since Nov 2006 • 484 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to Rich of Observationz,

    I have something like it on my Android. You point it and it shows the sky stars, and other objects. Definitely works. It's not based on pattern recognition, just location and orientation of the phone, so it's a bit laggy, but basically works.

    ETA. Also, point it at the ground, and it still works. It is kind of neat to see what stars around about to come up, and to always be able to point to Jupiter.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8659 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes, in reply to asnz,

    Screw 'em, Bayonet 'em, either way the light bulb gets the juice..

    Edison Screw them I Say!

    The wireless north ;-) • Since Dec 2006 • 4941 posts Report Reply

  • James Butler, in reply to BenWilson,

    I have something like it on my Android. You point it and it shows the sky stars, and other objects.

    OTOH it seems like another great way for geeks to avoid going outside and looking at the sky. Where do I sign up?

    Auckland • Since Jan 2009 • 801 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to James Butler,

    Where do I sign up?

    LOL. Yes, my smartphone is like the sexiest piece of equipment I've owned in years, couldn't keep my eyes/hands off it for weeks. I realized it was going too far when I found it in my hand when I woke up one morning.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8659 posts Report Reply

  • bmk, in reply to BenWilson,

    I realized it was going too far when I found it in my hand when I woke up one morning.

    lol ... that is a sure sign of an addiction getting out of hand. I remember a friend realising his p habit had gotten out of hand when he would fall asleep with his pipe in his hand and wake up clutching it. Burnt holes through his sheets too one time.

    Since Jun 2010 • 324 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca, in reply to BenWilson,

    Yes, my smartphone is like the sexiest piece of equipment I’ve owned in years, couldn’t keep my eyes/hands off it for weeks. I realized it was going too far when I found it in my hand when I woke up one morning.

    But, read this again ;)

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6341 posts Report Reply

  • petard,

    The Police attitude here and the position Mr Smith-Voorkamp finds himself in, are in part the result of the drive for transparency in all public decision making.

    The problem with transparency is that it has the side effect of reluctance by public officials to exercise any discretion ..

    It may be a surprise but the police still have a discretion whether or not to charge anyone with any offence regardless of the evidence against that person, the advent of diversion has been marked by a coincidental reluctance to exercise any discretion not to charge people with extremely minor offences.

    That is entirely understandable, diversion means that the police don't have to make line calls about the person they are dealing with in circumstances where they don't know the individual concerned --- that is, much of the discretion exercised in the past was based on a police officer's personal knowledge of the individual, his family or some person who could vouch for that individual.(With the demise of "local policing"- in the old fashioned sense - and an increasingly mobile population, that local knowledge has gone).

    But the police now have a discretion whether or not to offer diversion, even if the offence and the individual otherwise apparently qualify.

    This exercise of that discretion tends to be made by good solid local cops after consultation with their local prosecution sergeant and - if it's in the 'too hard basket' - the local head of police.
    But the rule of thumb was, and clearly still is, that the further up the line the possibility of the exercise of any police discretion is passed, the less likely it is that any discretion will be exercised in favour of the individual charged.

    That is particularly the case where there has been any sort of publicity. The officers further up the line will nearly always back the decision of lower ranked officers unless that decision is fundamentally legally flawed.

    There is nothing new here except that i should comment that the media interest may have worked against the interests of Mr Smith-Voorkamp

    I am not criticising the media, i simply make an observation about a possible consequence and i should also carefully point out that i am not at this point passing judgement on the police decision.

    I have seen enough media reports of court cases to be never tempted to pass judgement solely on the basis of what the media have chosen to present to the public as the facts of the case.

    There appears to be a sub text here that i have missed . The case has become a hot potato with the Judiciary saying to the police "here you deal with this " and the police saying to the Judiciary "no no you deal with this"

    As Dexter x has already pointed out the judges have a fairly extensive range of discretionary sentencing options (and they are paid to exercise discretion)
    maybe the media spotlight makes them a tad bashful as well . I suspect that Judge Strettel may have been offering the police a dignified way out of their publicity hole,and that all that remains now is for Mr Smith-Voorkamp's advisors to give the judges the opportunity to tidy this mess up sensibly , I am not sure that a plea of not guilty will give any judge much scope but then again i haven't seen all the evidence.

    Since May 2011 • 6 posts Report Reply

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