Orwell strikes again

February 2nd, 2010 at 4:05 pm by David Farrar

Around 9 pm last night made a rather bizarre post on . And presumably one of his colleagues stepped in and hid it from view as it disappeared for around several hours.

One would have thought they would have learnt from the Chris Finlayson episode, that it is a bad idea to delete stuff you regret, as it is cached and stored all over the place.

As people on Red Alert asked what happened to it, it then reappeared a few hours later.George Orwell would be proud his novels were so accurate!

The post was rather stupid, to be blunt. It says/said:

It is going to be interesting to see how hard the Nats push their policy of shifting from a pretty strict zoning system based on a right to enrol if in zone to giving flexibilty to schools to pick and choose students.

Being in the zone increases the value of a house by between $100 and $150k, it will be interesting to see how balances her pretty extreme free market views with the writing off of property values.

Big + for Jacinda I think.

I know Labour are desperate to try and talk the race up, but really describing Nikki as holding “pretty extreme free market views” is hilarious. All I can say is that whatever Trevor is inhaling needs to be reclassified from Class C to Class A!!

More to the point, Trevor needs to visit Auckland more often. The Auckland Grammar zone is here. Almost none of it is actually in Auckland Central. It is almost all in Epsom and Mt Albert. I can only presume he was desperately trying to come up with an issue, and this is the best he could come up with.

The only parts that are in zone are the CBD on and east of Queens Street, and Grafton. Now I don’t think anyone thinks many families live in CBD apartments, and their value is not greatly affected by the Grammar zone (look at apartment values on Queen St vs Albert St). So that only leaves Grafton which is around 5% of the electorate.

I do like the fact that Trevor defends on the basis that house values in Epsom will decrease too much if one makes it more flexible. Good to see Labour focused on helping kids get the best education.

Incidentally, while I think it is very unlikely the Grammar zone will disappear, I would say it would be incredibly popular in the other 95% of Auckland Central, as their parents would get a choice of schools.

UPDATE: Clare Curran has commented that the Red Alert post disappeared due to a technical glitch, and it was not done deliberately.

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48 Responses to “Orwell strikes again”

  1. dime (9,972 comments) says:

    being in a good school zone is a bonus.. but 100 – 150k???? hes on drugs

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  2. currancl (11 comments) says:

    David, I don’t very often comment on Kiwiblog. But for your readers info it was a glitch. Nothing to do with Trevor or his post. We’ve had a few tehnical glitches on Red Alert in the last few days. Apologies to everyone for raising your epxectations of controversy within the red ranks. And David, don’t you have better things to do than watch Red Alert constantly? Not that it isn’t an important pastime.

    [DPF: Ta. I don't watch it constantly. I have this thing called an RSS feed.]

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  3. Fale Andrew Lesa (473 comments) says:

    At the end of the day its NOT the school that is fully responsible for a student’s learning, its the student.

    I know students who have come from some of the worst schools in the country and eventually graduate with PHD’s and the like. Taking charge of ones own education is the fundamental difference between academic success and academic failure, no amount of school activity is going to change this nor is the “golden” reputation of Auckland Grammar.

    I believe Nelson Mandela earned his law degree as a prisoner?

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  4. GTP (42 comments) says:

    ” but 100 – 150k???? hes on drugs”

    Nope, he’s about right about that (wrong about most things), maybe a bit on the light side if anything.

    Work it out, if the alternative is to send the kids to private secondary school. 2 kids x 15k pa x 5 years secondary school = $150k (very roughly). Plenty of people willing to pay that to get into AGS or EGGS

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  5. Manolo (13,774 comments) says:

    I reckon the thuggish Tiger Mallard is going through male menopause. Otherwise, how do you explain his many cock-ups (pun intended) of late?

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  6. Pete George (23,562 comments) says:

    Glitch or not, basing decisions on what is the best for the education of kids on property values is a bit bizarre. Political decisions can affect property values in many ways, it doesn’t usually stop progress.

    We can’t get straightjacketed in a situation where any decision that adversely affects anyone can’t be made. Life, particularly a decent life, often requires tough decisions. Even some that might risk votes.

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  7. Cactus Kate (551 comments) says:

    Sadly Nikki Kaye does hold “pretty extreme free market views” when compared with some of the Pink Tories in the National party.

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  8. XChequer (298 comments) says:

    Uh, Clare, among other things, it’s Davids job to read other blogs

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  9. Manolo (13,774 comments) says:

    Cactus is being generous by labelling them Pink. Most of the current National Party leaders are on the red / green side of the political spectrum. Just ask Nick Smith about his preferences.

    Sadly, the National Party is a caricature of what once was.

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  10. Brian Smaller (4,023 comments) says:

    Aren’t those technical glitches a bastard..I mean…a godsend when explaining away things like that.

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  11. MikeNZ (3,234 comments) says:

    Fale
    I believe Nelson Mandela earned his law degree as a prisoner?

    He was a lawyer before he ordered people blown up and killed, that’s what he went to jail for, in case you weren’t aware.

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  12. MikeNZ (3,234 comments) says:

    manalo
    Maybe he’s taking steriods or testosterone for sport like?

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  13. Jeff83 (745 comments) says:

    “being in a good school zone is a bonus.. but 100 – 150k???? hes on drugs”

    Considering the cost of private schools, and being a capital value gainable on sale I wouldnt say its a bad investment really. Do I think its that value, no, but there is definitely value being in the Grammar zone, its like in Hamilton there is value in being in the Hillcrest zone.

    My views on zoning are mixed, however I do believe that a public highschool should be forced to take those students who live near it, i.e. its zone. Whilst you say that getting rid of zoning brings in “choice” it doesn’t really in reality work that way. What it allows is top schools to cherry pick their students, it gives “choice” to top schools more so than parents.

    However in saying that there are some redeming features, i.e. it does give an excellent student from harder backgrounds a greater chance of breaking free…in saying that the main students grammar used to take from “harder zones” were for its rugby team.

    Tis a hard one, but definitely not a one sided argument of “choice”.

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  14. Jeff83 (745 comments) says:

    “He was a lawyer before he ordered people blown up and killed, that’s what he went to jail for, in case you weren’t aware.

    Yeah by a regime that treated his people like slaves. If you tried to effectively enslave me, I would blow you up as well, and I imagine quid pro quo.

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  15. Matt Long (90 comments) says:

    Another great fear reported in Stuff; Dr Sharples told Waatea News on Radio New Zealand that he had “grave fears” the government policy to introduce national standards would mean that parents would choose schools based on the standards they achieved.

    Imagine the shame of it, no kids going to your school if you can teach them. Scandalous.

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  16. David in Chch (519 comments) says:

    This could go here OR in the post about standards, but Dim-Post has an interesting link to an article in The Atlantic that discusses a long-term study by an independent group in the US. The result? The TEACHER has more impact than _anything_ or _anyone_ else. AND that the really great teachers DO affect the students’ test scores and their future learning and fates. AND the Obama administration is going to fork out lots of money to improve education, but ONLY to those states and school zones that will allow poor teachers to be fired.

    That’s right – the good teachers will be rewarded and the poor teachers fired. That’s the plan it seems but whether it actually happens or not is another matter.

    The link is here:
    http://www.theatlantic.com/doc/print/201001/good-teaching
    courtesy of Dim-Post
    http://dimpost.wordpress.com/2010/02/01/good-journalism-o-the-day-7/

    So school zones is a red herring. There are good and bad teachers everywhere, and it seems that we _can_ tell which are which. It’s not easy but it is do-able.

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  17. expat (4,050 comments) says:

    Technical glitch = DIC of keyboard.

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  18. davidp (3,581 comments) says:

    >I do like the fact that Trevor defends school zoning on the basis that house values in Epsom will decrease too much if one makes it more flexible.

    So Labour would oppose increased funding to schools in, say, Mt Roskill or the North Shore on the basis that if they were more attractive then there would be less reason for Aucklanders to want to live in the Auckland Grammar catchment and this would lead to a reduction in Epsom property values?

    It’s like they’re making a play for Strangest Political Policy AND Biggest Transfer Of Public Money From Poor To Rich world records at the same time.

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  19. Swiftman the infidel (329 comments) says:

    “being in a good school zone is a bonus.. but 100 – 150k???? hes on drugs”

    Yep, alcohol.

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  20. Dirty Rat (504 comments) says:

    Knowing that I live in Grammer zone makes me want to drink too

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  21. kiwitoffee (383 comments) says:

    The world’s greatest irony…St Peter’s College, which does not have a zone, provides a better education than Auckland Grammar.

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  22. sweetd (125 comments) says:

    kiwitoffee, can you provide a source for your post?

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  23. queenstfarmer (782 comments) says:

    Trevor needs to visit Auckland more often

    The medicine sounds worse than the disease!

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  24. kiki (425 comments) says:

    So Epson is in this zone. This explains why Rodney is so quiet on ACT policy which would give the parents the money to choose and the schools the right to pick. Good-buy zoning.

    National are on about standards but don’t want to give the freedom to schools or parents.

    Stop playing around the edges as it is time to smash the system and start again.

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  25. noodle (151 comments) says:

    Mallard’s figures may be roughly correct but I fear the man was as “politically confused as a newt” when he hit the keyboard. tsk tsk Trev.

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  26. kiwitoffee (383 comments) says:

    sweetd

    A source? Er, just a random ethnographic sample survey thingie. Or just ask any pupil.

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  27. Countess (150 comments) says:

    And ‘technical glitches havent happened to KB?

    Telecom would love to have you run their XT network as you have the perfect system

    [DPF: KB has plenty of glitches. Funnily enough, none of them have been making a post disappear an hour after it appeared]

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  28. jaba (2,142 comments) says:

    “And David, don’t you have better things to do than watch Red Alert constantly? Not that it isn’t an important pastime”
    Clare, how did you know David made a comment on this blog?

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  29. trout (939 comments) says:

    Socialists have been in denial for years re the popularity of Auckland Grammar; they want to believe that parents are selfish for wanting the best education for their kids. The concept of ‘quality’ education, where achievement is encouraged, eludes them. And of course the feminists in the Education system hate what Auckland Grammar represents, which is ‘success'; they see this as ‘male power’. All sorts of ruses have been attempted to bring Grammar down to Socialist norm; ie ‘average’ – restrictions on applicants (which gave disadvantaged students from Mangere a real opportunity to excel), zoning and the requirement that the School must take all applicants within the zone (without pre-enrolement) hoping the school will burst at the seams. As a State school the success of Grammar shows up the failure of wishy washy liberalism held dear in the Education community.
    The solution of course it to reproduce the Grammar model; create Grammer campuses in low decile areas of Auckland. Stay with single sex because it works. Parents would be ecstatic; but then of course their views do not count.

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  30. Dirty Rat (504 comments) says:

    trout

    are you suggesting that producing wankers should be a role model ?

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  31. Tim Ellis (251 comments) says:

    The timing of the glitch seems suspicious. The post “disappeared” within minutes of somebody pointing out Mr Mallard’s error, and returned as soon as somebody asked why it had disappeared.

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  32. tvb (4,422 comments) says:

    Nelson Mandela did NOT get his law degree while a prisoner. He was a middle temple lawyer long before he became a guest of Robbin Island. Now back to Mallard. He displayed total and complete ignorance if he thinks properties in the Auckland Central electorate bears any relationship to Auckland grammar. It is well out of zone But it is true the Auckland central electorate has amongst the most expensive real estate in New Zealand, because of its proximity to the CBD. It is not not a place that you will find many labour votes. Auckland Central is rich, white and liberal with some students thrown in here and there.

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  33. Tim Ellis (251 comments) says:

    tvb, auckland central was held by Labour for ninety years, with one brief exception when it went to the Alliance. It’s quite a liberal seat, and seems to be getting bluer each year. I think Labour are fooling themselves if they think people will wake up and suddenly regret voting Ms Kaye in.

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  34. Right of way is Way of Right (1,122 comments) says:

    Clare Curran has an annoying habit of setting off my b.s. detector! Today’s actions are no different.

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  35. jaba (2,142 comments) says:

    Labour spent somewhere around 1/2 of their 9 long years having glitches so nothing has changed. At least time they never blamed a non Labour party MP.

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  36. Inventory2 (10,340 comments) says:

    “UPDATE: Clare Curran has commented that the Red Alert post disappeared due to a technical glitch, and it was not done deliberately.”

    As my children are apt to say – “Whatever”.

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  37. Tim Ellis (251 comments) says:

    I wonder if the technical glitch can be traced back to Mr Mallard?

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  38. Angus (536 comments) says:

    “UPDATE: Clare Curran has commented that the Red Alert post disappeared due to a technical glitch, and it was not done deliberately.”

    Oh yeah. Just like Lynn Prentice claimed the truth when that greenie-smelly protester “accidentally” came into the oncoming path of that megaphone when Len Richards “moved”

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  39. jaba (2,142 comments) says:

    thanks Angus .. some goodies there .. liked whales “meet the Labour MPs”

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  40. burt (8,269 comments) says:

    Auckland Grammar is a good example of what school zoning achieves. see here: The Listener: School wars, by Amie Richardson

    “At Auckland Grammar, for instance, there were a significant number of Maori and Pacific Island students, but now it’s gone right down [the number has dropped to 1.5% Maori and 2% Pacific Island from a high of 8% each, according to head John Morris]. That’s a sad thing. One student who had worked really hard to get into [Wellington College] and missed out on the ballot said all it had taught him was that life is just a lottery.

    And of course, Mallard supports school zoning but did his kids go to his local school – NO!

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  41. burt (8,269 comments) says:

    From that same article – school wars;

    The changing rolls of schools will almost certainly impact on real estate trends. Massey University property group professor Bob Hargreaves reports that buying in or out of high-profile zones such as Auckland’s Grammar zone can mean a six-figure price differential. “Two houses on exactly the same street – one on one side in-zone and the other across the road out-of-zone – could have a difference of $100,000 between them.” Hargreaves says that buying in the sought-after areas and zones is not an option for most New Zealanders. “It’s symptomatic of society changes. Society is becoming more of an hour-glass shape – there’s less in the middle and more at the top and at the bottom.”

    Hard to reconcile Labour’s claim that it wants to address the inequalities in society while Labour sticks to a policy that polarises suburbs and creates exclusive state schools for wealthy people who can afford to live in zone.

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  42. jaba (2,142 comments) says:

    now Nash and Daffy are taking some hits.

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  43. Fale Andrew Lesa (473 comments) says:

    To all those who argue that Nelson Mandela did not study towards his law degree while in prison (tvb and MikeNZ), I provide this –

    Allow me to quote: “Later in his life, while in prison, Mandela studied for a Bachelor of Laws from the University of London External Programme.”

    Now either you’re right and I was wrong or the facts were right and you were wrong. I hope you didn’t graduate from the Auckland Grammar school, what a shame that would be to those that taught you history.

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  44. Ed Snack (1,872 comments) says:

    Although it is noble of Clare (with the countess in support) to claim a “glitch” led to the post disappearing, with the best will in the world one has to say that it sounds a awfully like a Tui ad to me. Would we believe it ? Let’s consider who’s making the claim, Labour party, nope, no time needed on that one, fake. Guilt by association, sure, but well earned.

    I wonder sometimes if Trevor has ever heard of the old chestnut about “engaging brain before putting mouth in gear”, and just substitute posting finger for mouth.

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  45. burt (8,269 comments) says:

    Ed Snack

    Mallard hasn’t yet worked out that putting brain in gear before engaging fists is required and expected of him. How the hell would he have any concept of controlling his mouth or his fingers on a keyboard?

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  46. Craig Ranapia (1,915 comments) says:

    And David, don’t you have better things to do than watch Red Alert constantly? Not that it isn’t an important pastime.

    Claire: Since you obviously can’t be arsed making sure Trevor doesn’t post fiction on what’s supposed to be an official Labour caucus group blog, someone has to.

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  47. Brian Marshall (202 comments) says:

    Hmmm Rank of Mallard to moan about strict school zoning.
    Burt above at 8:23 makes a good point.

    Question for everybody and DPF in particular…… Where did Trevor send his children for secondary school??????
    How many other public secondary schools did his children have to bypass to get to get to that school.

    Answer #1, Hutt Valley High, and Answer#2 they had to go out of the Wainuiomata valley which had two secondary schools. (WOA college and Parkway). This was at a time when Labour was in favour of zoning.
    Of course I’d like to say that I went to Wainui and hate the pillock for closing my old school down when it was the better of the two sites. There was a rumour going around at the time that the local iwi wanted the land for treaty settlement.

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  48. black paul (120 comments) says:

    “Work it out, if the alternative is to send the kids to private secondary school. 2 kids x 15k pa x 5 years secondary school = $150k (very roughly). Plenty of people willing to pay that to get into AGS or EGGS”

    And you get it back if you sell your house. Not bad.

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