Posts by Craig Ranapia

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  • Speaker: A Disorderly Brexit, in reply to BenWilson,

    Since there is a power vacuum, it might be a good time to ask the Queen what she thinks. If there was ever a time for a constitutional monarchy, it would be when the democratic system suddenly collapses.

    And she won’t, because The Queen has a grip on how a constitutional monarchy actually works.

    And disappointed as I am by the result, democracy has not collapsed in the UK. Last time I looked, Parliament still trumps a non-binding indicative opinion poll and England already has one queen. It doesn’t need millions of the House of Drama.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12321 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: A Disorderly Brexit, in reply to Prudence,

    Yes. That the EU is not a democratic institution is a salient point not often made.

    Neither is the United Kingdom’s upper house and the hereditary monarch who is their head of state – a salient point that never gets made.

    And that the Remain faction was finaced by the big banks makes one question what their motive for remaining is. Well it’s fairly obvious.

    And, yet again, let’s have a little honesty about who was financing the Leave campaign shall we?

    The two largest donations, together worth more than £5m, were to Leave campaign groups backed by Arron Banks, the insurance millionaire and Ukip backer: Leave.EU and Grassroots Out. The official pro-Brexit organisation is Vote Leave.

    The largest individual donation was made by Peter Hargreaves, founder of the financial advisory firm Hargreaves Lansdowne, who gave £3.2m to Leave.EU. The second largest came from Better for the Country Ltd, which is owned by Mr Banks, and which donated £1.95m to the umbrella group Grassroots Out.

    Meanwhile, good luck to all those Leave voters looking for assurances that Prime Minister Boris is going to make sure those EU funding holes are going to be filled. I expect that 350m a week for the NHS that vanished hours after the polls closed with materialize first.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12321 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Media Take: Three decades on…, in reply to nzlemming,

    Ugh, you're quite right Vern(on) Young is a second cousin of mine, who is also a top-shelf human being but has as much interest in politics as I have in rugby. :)

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12321 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Media Take: Three decades on…, in reply to Russell Brown,

    I’ve long been quite conflicted, because I know that the Salvation Army helped my alcoholic father and I’m grateful for that.

    I totally get and respect that, and I feel the same conflict from a slightly different angle. But they still actively campaigned against Law Reform (and IIRC the Human Rights Amendment Act) and as my late Nana used to say to me far too often: It's all very nice apologizing, dear, but its much better to have nothing to apologize for.

    If the Salvation Army had their way, I'd still be a sex criminal who could legally be sacked or denied housing and services.

    That's far too close to home for me to forgive.

    And this is why the indifference of networks to commissioning a documentary really pisses me off on a very visceral level.

    With the benefit of hindsight, its always easy to fall into the comforting belief that Homosexual Law Reform was someone inevitable.

    That's just not true. And if someone doesn't tell the truth -- including the history of Vern Young's bill twelve years earlier -- it not only distorts history but allows complacency to breed. That's not only annoying but dangerous -- because if recent events in the United States and England have taught us anything it should be that nothing -- nothing -- is set is stone.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12321 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Hate and guns, in reply to andin,

    I read some authority somewhere is thinking of of prosecuting some one for not reporting him

    In all seriousness, when I first saw that I thought it was a sick bloody joke.

    Add "people who wonder why abused women don't go to the authorities" to the rapidly expanding list of people I'll tell to fuck off for the foreseeable future.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12321 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Hate and guns, in reply to Russell Brown,

    It’s tempting to think his confused and contradictory grab-bag of radical influences pushed him into an act of extreme self-loathing. Or did the fact of a Latin night featuring trans performers trigger some other hatred? I guess we’ll find out more in time.

    It's also equally plausible that he was a deeply homophobic straight man who scoped out the scene of his crime for a disturbingly long time, using social media to stalk potential victims and hung around people he hated with an ultimately lethal passion.

    I don't know, in the end it may turn out nobody ever really knows what the fuck was going through Mateen's mind because this is real life not television where everything ties up in a neat bow at the end.

    But I'm seeing people who are glomming onto "a self-hating Muslim queer did it" with indecent haste (present company very much excluded) because it's a narrative that neatly side-steps hard and ugly questions about homophobia and gun culture.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12321 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Hate and guns, in reply to Matthew Hooton,

    Sadly you are almost certainly right. But still, leadership is essential. Obama repeating the same “isn’t this terrible” speech hasn’t been that.

    Dude, with all due and insincere respect, I’m happy to give you a one-on-one seminar on how the Constitution of the United States was constructed to separate the executive and legislative branches of the federal government.

    And if you think the GOP gives a deep fried rat’s arse what Obama thinks about anything – let alone gun control – you really haven’t been paying attention for the last nine years.

    Meanwhile, if you want to know what happens to Republicans who get on the NRA’s shitlist – ask Richard Lugar, whose impeccably conservative record was terminally blotted in the gun industry’s eyes by his support for an assault weapon ban and voting to confirm Supreme Court Justices Sotomayor and Kagan over their objections. Do you think the NRA endorsed his primary opponent, and ran hundreds of thousands of dollars in attack ads for the shits and giggles?

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12321 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Hate and guns, in reply to Russell Brown,

    The Senate Republicans last year voted down a measure that would have prevented people on terrorism watch lists from buying guns. Unbelievably.

    All too believably because the National Rifle Association may be contemptible shit-weasels, but they’re brutally efficient lobbyists and when they put money into your campaign you tend to stay brought. Or else. Hell, earlier this year the Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell pretty much came out and admitted nobody on the NRA’s shitlist would get confirmed to the Supreme Court as long as the Republican Party had any say in the matter.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12321 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Hate and guns,

    Three assault rifles, high-capacity clips (bound together for fast reload, according to people who know about these things), five gallons of explosive material. Fuck.

    *shudder* As I've pointed out elsewhere today, more than once, this is shit my father didn't have access to when he was a solider fighting honest to God Nazis in a real war.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12321 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Hate and guns,

    James Wesley Howell, was arrested wth multiple assault weapons and bomb-making ingredients, before he could carry out his intention to “do harm” to those who gathered at Los Angeles’ annual Pride march.

    And its depressing what doesn't happen when a heavily-armed white man is arrested intending to commit a violent crime.

    NOBODY instantly assumes he's a "radical Christianist," or has links to radical right-wing hate groups.

    NOBODY instantly assumes he's an immigrant.

    NOBODY instantly calls him a terrorist.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12321 posts Report Reply

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