Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Those Men Again

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  • Graeme Edgeler,

    The Standard has a good scoop

    One interesting point is that, as the law is written (apologies Don), come January 1st, those writing The Standard will have to let us know who they are (and where they live).

    Perhaps they're the same people who were behind the well-funded Keep Left NZ during the last election?

    Wellington, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 3009 posts Report Reply

  • Don Christie,

    as the law is written (apologies Don)

    :-)

    I have no problem with the fact that the authors of those sites should become known. Having been around the internet for a while I have definitely come to the conclusion that posting under pseudonyms is probably not the right way to go anyway. Best to use your own name and curtail your writing accordingly.

    That aside, the principle of being upfront about who you are when pushing a political agenda is really important and I would hope those "The Standard" people agree.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1616 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    Idiot Savant:

    I know we're perpetually going to have to agree to disagree on this, but if electoral outcomes were that easily 'brought' then I'd suggest our electoral system would be rather different today. Now, I didn't support MMP - and am still rather ambivalent about it today - but I don't think I was on the losing side of that argument because advocates had any kind of financial advantage.

    And just as a small courtesy, could you occasionally acknowledge that those of us who don't think the EFB can be "fixed up" in committee or via SOP aren't all whores of corporate special interests and weird scare-wearing cults? :)

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12034 posts Report Reply

  • Deborah,

    weird scare-wearing cults

    A very apt typo, Craig.

    Manawatu City • Since Nov 2006 • 1323 posts Report Reply

  • InternationalObserver,

    You know what really needs banned? Mountain Climbing. Seriously, kills people, cripples them for life, huge costs to the hospitals and rescue crews; and yet there's shops in tourist towns set up to sell mountain climbing gear as if it's normal. The Government is involved in getting people to go there. It's MADNESS.

    Right on Tussock! But what do you expect when our very own PM indulges in a spot of Mountain Climbing from time to time? ("I may have climbed to the peak but I never inhaled the fresh mountain air"). I believe it all started at University, when she 'experimented' with hiking. Maybe we should ban that too, it's obviously a gateway.

    Since Jun 2007 • 909 posts Report Reply

  • linger,

    Don:

    It's not the pseudonyms, it's how we're pseudonyming.
    In my own case (though the same considerations apply to other individuals such as "Idiot/Savant"), there are several reasons for using "linger":

    (1) more people know me by this name than by my birth name. I've been online in some form under "linger" since 1993.

    (2) my personal name is quite a common one. (And it's not a secret; I have signed several of these posts with it. But there are already several "Robert"s here, so why not use something more distinctive?)

    (3) I have never had any other username, so it is still, in an important sense, me. In some ways, I hope, the best aspects of myself. When posting under "linger" I make more of an effort to stay rational, calm, & open to other opinions than I sometimes do in person. This is possible precisely because this is a written forum, and we have the opportunity to reflect on what we write before hitting "Post".

    --Robert.

    Tokyo • Since Apr 2007 • 916 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    Going to Varsity is a gateway to harder stuff, all by itself.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8591 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    linger I kind of agree. I had an online gaming pseudonym back when I used to fritter away life that way, but I ended up being as careful with what I said as that, as I am with my real name now. Otherwise you blow the only purpose of using a consistent handle - that people might want to read what you say.

    Troll wouldn't care less. They're only targeting the non-savvy and other trolls anyway.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8591 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    Tussock, Mountain Climbing is only the BZP of extreme fun. The P is having a decent car, and that's already being legislated and disincentivized away. But of course there are more and more users anyway, more criminalized youths every day. The War on Fun will never be won. How can you have a war against your own children?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8591 posts Report Reply

  • merc,

    But, but, The Kids Are OK Right?

    Since Dec 2006 • 2471 posts Report Reply

  • nanoplanet,

    i hope the contributors to the daily msm have to declare their political interessts too - that would only be fair, right?

    and yes merc, the kids are fine.

    Here • Since Apr 2007 • 15 posts Report Reply

  • Margaret B,

    I think also that the War on Pseudonyms fails to recognise that women sometimes have a different experience of online forums than men. Although it's not in my life experience, I wonder if those who openly identify as non-heterosexual may face similar barriers to using their real names.

    Linger makes some good points about a consistent pseudonym being different from anonymous trolling.

    Since Oct 2007 • 59 posts Report Reply

  • Don Christie,

    I think also that the War on Pseudonyms fails to recognise that women sometimes have a different experience of online forums than men.

    Yes, I have definitely witnessed and had second hand evidence of that. It's horrible. I wasn't trying to start a war, just make a bout about my own conclusions.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1616 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    i hope the contributors to the daily msm have to declare their political interessts too - that would only be fair, right?

    Well, not a very apt analogy. I'd note the political coverage in the Herald in front of me is all by-lined, and it's a matter of public record who own the paper. I'd also suggest that if Audrey Young was 'moonlighting' as a lobbyist or consultant to a political party, she'd be doing so without the knowledge or consent of her employer - and unless I'm very much mistaken such activities would be grounds for instant dismissal.

    I wonder if those who openly identify as non-heterosexual may face similar barriers to using their real names.

    Well, perhaps. But I'd also note that when I blogging at NZPundit, the really virulent, homophobic stuff didn't come over a real name and return address either.

    In the end, my attitude is that I'm not shy about strong, and strongly expressed opinions about folks who don't have the luxury of operating in the shadows. Just seems plain good manners - and a basic, if crude, mechanism of accountability - that I do so under my real name.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12034 posts Report Reply

  • the bean,

    Re: the EFB - agree completely with the points about the asymetrical nature of it. I'd be quite happy with it if the govt would swear off any ad campaigns itself for working for families, Kiwisaver, business tax cuts, how well ACC is doing (yep, there's another one of those campaigns planned as well) from Jan 1.

    Really? How is this the same thing? These are mainly services available under the current government that people should be made aware that they could use. The government should be expected, after creating and implementing these policies, to inform citizens they exist. Or would you rather the government have these policies and then no one knows about them and thus cannot benefit from them? It is a little bit larger than partisan campaigning

    Since Oct 2007 • 1 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    the bean:

    With all due respect, I was in Sudney as (entirely coincidentally I'm sure) millions of dollars worth of 'public information' campaigns started around the same time the state election campaign kicked into high gear.

    I certainly agree that hitting old people is bad, droughts suck and you really should slow down when driving past schools. But let's get real for a moment - the informational quality of the adverts I saw was minimal to 'who the fuck are you fooling?'

    As for the Kiwisaver TV ads - they're frightfully clever, but exactly what information is in them that you couldn't get from your employer, your bank or a basic Google search?
    this

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12034 posts Report Reply

  • InternationalObserver,

    what The Bean said, above

    Sorry, but I'm with Craig on this one. Whilst I agree that the public should be well informed of public policy/benefits that could benefit them; most of the advertising is overkill. Which makes me suspect the motives.

    I look forward to a Govt sponsored campaign to alert all 4 million of us that 140,000 ppl might be eligible for home insulation subsidies.

    Since Jun 2007 • 909 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    Russell, a total aside: Have you ever had to moderate anything that wasn't spam since you enabled comments?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8591 posts Report Reply

  • Graeme Edgeler,

    most of the advertising is overkill.

    I always like the stat that so much was spent advertising Working for Families that the Government could have hand-couriered, signature required, all the information to every family in the country and saved themselves money.

    Wellington, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 3009 posts Report Reply

  • InternationalObserver,

    Yikes! That's amazing Graeme - got a link?

    </correction>

    140,000 ppl might be eligible for home insulation subsidies

    That should be 70,000 ppl might be eligible for home insulation subsidies, and 70,000 ppl might be eligible for home insulation interest free loans.

    Since Jun 2007 • 909 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    I'm not really that interested in heart medicine or BZP, but I do wish my local 4 Square would start selling heroin.

    One thing people who claim the US War on Drugs is working reliably ignore is the massive shift to prescription drug abuse there: you can't get codeine in anything, but you can probably find someone who'll prescribe you Vicodin or Oxycontin, which are both very effective and, especially in the case of Oxycontin, extremely addictve.

    I was going to expand that observation into a thoughtful treatise on related issues, but it's Friday night and I ran out of steam ...

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18964 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie,

    . . . you can probably find someone who'll prescribe you Vicodin or Oxycontin, which are both very effective and, especially in the case of Oxycontin, extremely addictve.

    Long-term, heroin has to be better than Oxycontin - just compare Iggy Pop with Rush Limbaugh.

    http://www.exile.ru/articles/detail.php?ARTICLE_ID=12866&IBLOCK_ID=35

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 3555 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Parks,

    Whereas take prescription medication appropriately is not done with the deliberate intent to drive less well.

    Neil, could you please enlighten me as to which drugs are taken with the deliberate intent to drive less well?

    Wellington • Since May 2007 • 1156 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    Which makes me suspect the motives.

    You don't even need my hyperactive cynicism gland to not merely "suspect the motives" - but that this kind of rort has become so blatant that's it's just greeted with a shurg? why are media outlets going to kick up a stink editorially, when their advertising departments are quite happy to run the things and cash the cheques? And the Opposition aren't going to make too big a fuss either - after all, all the state governments may currently be Labour ones, but you can't say the Coalition (state or federal) occupy the moral high ground, or have much interest in claiming it.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12034 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Parks,

    ...spare me the Greens arguing that a bit of recreational shooting up is some how equivalent to taking heart medication.

    Well, taking heart medication certainly isn't exactly the same as, say, taking pot. If that's the Greens position, sure, it's absurd.

    I'm not closely familiar with the Greens policy, but "...some how equivalent to..." is pretty loose, though. Obviously there are reasonable compressions that could be made. You could say, for example, that quantity x of this or that illicit drug has this much of an adverse effect on your reaction time. And being on such & such prescription drug has a similar effect. If so, maybe people should not be allowed to drive on those drugs (at whatever appropriate quantities) if the effect is considered sufficiently deleterious.

    Surely what matters is whether a particular drug taken by the potential driver is likely to cause adverse effects that would make the driver an unreasonable danger on the roads. What difference does it make whether the drug is prescriptive, non-prescriptive, legal or illegal?

    Wellington • Since May 2007 • 1156 posts Report Reply

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