Posts by Joe Wylie

  • Hard News: Behind those Herald…, in reply to Matthew Poole,

    His language is, shall we say, plain, but treading along the edges of ethical lines is hardly limited to property speculators.

    I'm not seeing a major philosophical distinction between this and Bill English's dismissal of the disadvantaged as the drug-addled authors of their own misfortune. Especially so when Matthew Hooton drops by to confirm it as a foundation myth & legend of the grammar zone.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4447 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Behind those Herald…, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    They were damn stupid to send out a dvd/video without actually viewing it first.

    Still, the poor(?) little fella seemed to genuinely believe that he was only advocating the kind of thing that they've been giving out Queens Service Medals and JP-hoods for.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4447 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Every option has costs, every…, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    Anyway at some point folks decided to include all sorts of post high school training and learning as tertiary education. Rightly so. All those training/education schemes "add value" to the people who take them and add value to society.

    I suspect that the high water mark for that kind of overhyping of "qualifications" happened decades ago. In an early 90s article attacking the shonkiness of the "Crown Health Enterprises" reforms of the Bolger Government (Metro? Can't find it online), Spiro Zavos gave the example of a hospital manager whose tertiary qualification cited in his CV boiled down to a weekend corporate bonding event held at the Tatum Park boy scout facility on the Kapiti Coast.

    While that emergent class of brave new bureaucrats were initially able to bully nurses when awarding themselves free parking while introducing charges for medical staff, their resolve rapidly crumbled once the doctors got wind of the attempted shafting.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4447 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Media Take: We need to talk…, in reply to steven crawford,

    These are completely different substances that do entirely different things to human beings. Its just as good to argue that a shot of whisky would do the trick at a car accident.

    One of the striking things about accounts of 18th and 19th Century medicine is the widespread use of alcohol, e.g. lashings of brandy for a whole host of ailments. Prime Minister John Ballance's unsuccessful 1893 bowel cancer operation was supposed to have involved literal injections of champagne. It's almost as if Big Pharma supplanted the booze barons.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4447 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Every option has costs, every…, in reply to linger,

    NZ (especially, Auckland) is also not reliably more affordable than Sydney, for example – but we do offer a flexible range of entry routes to suit even the lowest-proficiency cases (e.g., starting at an accredited language school, then into a university-run English proficiency programme, and finally into degree courses proper).

    There appears to be no lack of cut-price paths to "degree courses proper" on offer within easy reach of Sydney. It's now sixteen years since the University of Wollongong fired - and was later forced to reinstate - a staff whistleblower who went public with his concerns about the deliberate downgrading of academic standards in pursuit of foreign student cash. Strangely enough, the problem seems to persist in one form or another.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4447 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: Britain: the crisis isn't…, in reply to martinb,

    Yeh, it wasn't the people that infiltrated it was the ideas. And Muldoon did gosh darn broke it. So I've been told. I think that's a red herring, because they won an election and then did the opposite of what they said. That's not the fault of the electoral system!

    Even Muldoon, in his late career interventionist Gang-of-One pomp, paid occasional lip service to Roger Douglas-style free market capitalism. Once Douglas was rehabilitated to the opposition front bench from his time in the wilderness, senior Muldoon-cabinet members such as Jim McLay were quick to accuse Labour of stealing National Party policy. As someone, either Tom Scott or Denis Welch, noted at the time, it mostly was National's policy, even if they kept it garaged and only took it for the occasional Sunday drive.

    But yes ultimately the answer to Muldoon and two elections won by a minority vote was electoral reform and more checks and balances....The opposite of that is that there are now no or limited backbencher revolts based on what their communities want as most MPs are reliant on the party.

    Others will be more au fait with the detailed history than I am, but I believe that sometime post-Muldoon National introduced Party reforms to overrule local branches on candidate selection. After Muldoon saw off an effective leadership challenge from Derek Quigley he all but exhausted his remaining political capital by cynically exploiting the support of the ailing and incompetent Keith Allen. That the ultimately tragic Allen was even an MP was, as Tom Scott put it at the time, due to local branches insisting on their right to send the incompetent of their choice to parliament.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4447 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: Britain: the crisis isn't…, in reply to izogi,

    It causes me to think plenty about how the likes of Douglas and Prebble infiltrated NZ Labour in the 80s, despite having polar opposite ideologies from typical Labour policies. They weren't exactly going to get anywhere under Muldoon, and joining Labour was the only realistic option for getting into parliament at all.

    Douglas was effectively born into the party, and was something of a rising star Minister in the Kirk and Rowling Governments. Despite his unprepossessing haircut and dire taste in jumpers, the young Prebble apparently made a great impression with the ageing stalwarts of the Princes Street branch of the Labour Party.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4447 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Friday Music: The Inside Track, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4447 posts Report Reply

  • Access: Fighting seclusion with…, in reply to Neil,

    It's important I think to understand the great difficulties faced by treating teams in these rare complex cases. They are experienced professionals who do not take restricting someone's freedoms lightly.

    Is this simply a pious affirmation, or do you have solid evidence that this is so? In every case where I've asked people whose job it is to deal with the heavy lifting involved with severe disability about the option of genuinely humane treatment, they'll cite a lack of resources, i.e. sure it could be better, but we do our best in the circumstances.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4447 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: The Brexlection, in reply to linger,

    Why not join Scotland, for a stronger opposition, and a stronger democracy!

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4447 posts Report Reply

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