General Debate 23 February 2012

February 23rd, 2012 at 8:00 am by Kokila Patel
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80 Responses to “General Debate 23 February 2012”

  1. Dave Mann (1,126 comments) says:

    Good morning all!

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  2. Murray (8,835 comments) says:

    Proove it.

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  3. immigant (950 comments) says:

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/crime/6465159/Teen-in-court-over-assault-on-policewoman

    No, there is no reason at all for all Police in NZ to have tazers.

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  4. Ender (105 comments) says:

    What a shame that would have been if he was Glocked.

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  5. Deane Jessep (53 comments) says:

    Murray; its all in how you measure “good”. The Australian Government is about to decend into no confidence mayhem and Australia proper is about to be exposed to Paul Henry… by comparison it will look like a good morning here.

    Some on topic enlightenment:
    http://www.ted.com/talks/stephen_coleman_the_moral_dangers_of_non_lethal_weapons.html

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  6. Murray (8,835 comments) says:

    Well its certainly a popcorn and feet up day for Tony Abbot Deane.

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  7. Manolo (12,622 comments) says:

    Another reason not to trust the U.N.: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970204792404577229074023195322.html?mod=WSJ_hp_mostpop_read

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  8. immigant (950 comments) says:

    Deane Jessep

    Come off it mate. I don’t see the diffirence between the police woman using her fists or a tazer. If you’re such a bad ass, stole a car and run from the cops, you have broken your ‘contract’ with the rest of society and therefore can be tazered.

    So all this demogogy about ‘moral dangers’ of using non lethal weapons, to me sounds like ‘moral dangers of using your fists when someone broke into your house.’

    Total university drivel that has no relation to real life.

    Have you ever been in a real fight Deane Jessep ? Do you know what it’s like to be knocked out?

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  9. Keeping Stock (9,788 comments) says:

    I’ve just blogged the transcript of Rudd’s resignation speech. It makes grim reading for Ms Gillard and her “faceless” union backers.

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  10. Pete George (21,806 comments) says:

    How much of a deal are asset sales? If you believe Labour, the Greens and TV3 they are one of the biggest issues our country faces. Labour bet the election on it. TV3 run special polls on it.

    Comment on a couple of polls – one says a little, one may say a lot more. Are asset sales a big deal?

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  11. Pete George (21,806 comments) says:

    Whale is doing a series of posts on Pimping the Poor and Tania Wysocki. Well worth following, blogging at it’s best. It should change a few minds, and confirm a few things.

    http://www.whaleoil.co.nz/2012/02/pimping-the-poor/
    http://www.whaleoil.co.nz/2012/02/pimping-the-poor-ctd/

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  12. Longknives (4,047 comments) says:

    Immigant and Ender-If this dirtbag teenager had been tazered his mum would be on Cambell live tonight screaming ‘Police Brutality on her Wee Angel’. No doubt the Children’s Commisioner would then get involved and everyone would sing “Kumbaya” and give a group hug to this poor wee mite ..The cop, once her wounds are healed, would then be subject to a lengthy and highly stressful internal investigation as she attempts to justify her actions.
    Should the vicious little bastard have stopped a bullet as he was attacking this Officer (as he would in any sane Country) all hell would break loose. The media (and numerous politicians) would quickly distort it into a race issue…The officer would be vilified and her life made a living hell.
    The Police can’t win in this country…

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  13. Deane Jessep (53 comments) says:

    Must confess I am a little confused why you are attacking me Immigrant.

    I happen to support the use of tasers by the police, I just liked the Ted talk. You should be more careful not to attack supporters just because they like balanced views.

    The video presents some interesting views with some interesting statistics, it also does not make any case about tasering by the police, it is all about the slippery slope of tasering by the military… hence the reason I posted it in general discussion.

    Answering your points though;

    1) TED is not “university drivvel” it is mostly talks on real experience by real people (and usually they are awesome).

    2) I grew up in Napier, went to an all boys school, have owned bars and night clubs, have wheeled and dealed with the worst of them, and all this has culminated in me being in a very large number of “fights” as you say, and for the record, I have been knocked out precisely twice.

    I’d kick your ass though :-p

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  14. adze (1,695 comments) says:

    National are losing by default re asset sales; they need to sell the idea to the public more. It’s probably no longer enough to rely on the mandate from the last election, at least not if they want a chance in 2014.

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  15. Nookin (2,887 comments) says:

    Pete

    Regretfully, I have come to the conclusion that TV3 is running a dishonest campaign about asset sales. This morning, when talking about a recent poll on asset sales, Rachel Smalley said that this was all about Crayfer farms. Asset sales have nothing to do with the crafer farm deal. The sale of state assets is a matter of government policy which is not subject to judicial review. The sale of the crafer farms involves a contract between third parties. The government must approve it according to strict criteria. It is not a political decision. TV3 knows that it is not a political decision. TV3 has presumably read the High Court judgment Which shows the complete lack of any politically motivated discretion available to the ministers who must apply the criteria in the Act. It has, after all, gloried in its smug view that the decision has left egg on the government face. It ignores the fact that the criteria applied by the government as the same criteria formulated andapplied, repeatedly, by the previous judgment.

    TV3 is deliberately confusing the two issues and in doing so creates prejudice. There can be no possible interpretation other than the fact that it is engaging in deceitful mischiefmaking.

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  16. Mary Rose (392 comments) says:

    >Good morning all!

    >Proove it.

    Ah come on guys, it’s a beautiful, sunny summer’s day….

    …yeah, Murray wins that one.

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  17. Longknives (4,047 comments) says:

    ” and for the record, I have been knocked out precisely twice.”

    The old Biscuit jaw!

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  18. Pete George (21,806 comments) says:

    Nookin, TV3, or at least the political department, have become political lobbiests more than journalists. They promoted their own agendas in the election campaign – unrestricted by electoral law. And they have carried on from there with an extended campaign.

    Yes they are confusing issues. They must be intelligent enough to understand what they are doing, which does suggest deceitfulness.

    It is a corruption of journalistic ethics.
    It is a corruption of our democracy.

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  19. Longknives (4,047 comments) says:

    I just want to know how this guy convinced his wife to get a Swedish Nanny! Kudos to that man…

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10787408

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  20. Nookin (2,887 comments) says:

    Longknives: I wonder how many times he has heard the phrase “I told you so!”

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  21. Nookin (2,887 comments) says:

    Pete
    Agree entirely with your last two comments.

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  22. immigant (950 comments) says:

    Deane Jessep

    What a tough c*&%t. From Napier none the less.

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  23. Manolo (12,622 comments) says:

    National are losing by default re asset sales; they need to sell the idea to the public more.

    True, the socialists appear to be gaining momentum and some support. Where is Smile and Wave?

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  24. tom hunter (4,004 comments) says:

    Hey, hey, hey!

    The USA just blew through the 100% Debt/GDP ratio barrier, and with another $1 trillion of debt that has to be issued in the next nine months, they’re going to be at 110% by year-end!

    If you’re wondering who is buying all this stuff take a look at the two charts in the link: it’s not the Chinese any longer. I was not surprised to see the Federal Reserve in there pitching but the two other big buyers of US debt did surprise me: Britain and Japan.

    There’s another chart in there showing their Debt/GDP ratios. It’s the equivalent of GM buying AGI in 2007. Still, as I’ve expected for four years, the Fed will have to keep things going until Nov 2012 unless they want to be convicted of throwing the US Presidential elections, so we’re all “safe” until then.

    Probably!

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  25. cha (3,533 comments) says:

    Deane Jessep couldn’t possibly be as tough as you could he immigant because you’ve fought them in Chechnia haven’t you.

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  26. Longknives (4,047 comments) says:

    So who would win in a fight between Immigant and Deane Jessep?
    I propose 12 rounds Queensberry Rules for the Kiwiblog Heavyweight Championship! (It honestly couldn’t be any worse than watching Sonny Bill Williams preening around the ring pretending to be a boxer against a paid actor..)

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  27. Deane Jessep (53 comments) says:

    I’m in,

    my honors been impinged now (not that I can actually find a 5 letter insult starting with c & ending with t)

    I say, lets have at it then man

    :-p

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  28. Pete George (21,806 comments) says:

    Whale has finished his series of posts on Pimping the Poor (starting here).

    Thumbs up: Tania Wysocki, Cameron Slater (Whale), Jan Logie (Greens)
    Thumbs down: Simon Collins, New Zealand Herald, Jacinda Adern (Labour)

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  29. Longknives (4,047 comments) says:

    Be warned Deane- Kiwibloggers don’t fight fair, It could well degenerate into a Pro Wrestling type-fiasco with outside interference rife..
    I’m picturing a ‘run-in’ eye gouge from Manolo, maybe a chair shot from Pete George,
    who even knows what Dime is capable of??

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  30. Jack5 (4,220 comments) says:

    Bill English and the Reserve Bank snooze while the kiwi dollar hammers NZ exporters.

    Yet, according to the Wall Street Journal today, other central bankers and countries are regaining some parts of the world currency market, in which foreign exchange with a face value of trillions of dollars a day is traded :

    ….finance officials and central banks have waged a largely successful campaign to drive speculators out of the yen and the Swiss franc, two of the world’s most heavily traded currencies…

    The kiwi dollar, of tiny NZ, is another of those most heavily traded currencies, of course.

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  31. Manolo (12,622 comments) says:

    Stone Age beliefs triumph: http://news.msn.co.nz/nationalnews/8424256/morgue-water-art-exhibit-doused

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  32. Pete George (21,806 comments) says:

    Deane – view with caution what someone called Longknives says about unfair fighting.

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  33. dime (8,752 comments) says:

    Dime will cave your fucking head in with a rock :)

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  34. dime (8,752 comments) says:

    jack5 – we are down a bit today. still at .82 though.

    as an importer its good for me. but longterm its not too flash as people end up with less money to spend…

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  35. tom hunter (4,004 comments) says:

    … the kiwi dollar hammers NZ exporters.

    As one of those exporters there’s no question about that.

    But there’s really nothing we can do about it. The reason being that it has less to do with us than with Benny and the Inkjets over in the USA, along with his counterparts in Japan and Europe. They’ve printed trillions and they’re going to print more. How else are they going to buy all the debt those governments are issuing?

    You may find this Forbes article amusing: it’s by a goldbug and focuses on the “true cost” of oil (which is also on the way to “hammer” us):

    Unfortunately, the talking heads that are trying to explain the reasons for high oil prices are missing one tiny detail. Oil prices aren’t high right now. In fact, they are unusually low.

    What the politicians, analysts, and pundits are missing is that prices are ratios

    As this is written, West Texas Intermediate crude oil (WTI) is trading at $105.88/bbl. All this means is that the market value of a barrel of WTI is 105.88 times the market value of “the dollar”. It is also true that WTI is trading at €79.95/bbl, ¥8,439.69/barrel, and £67.13/bbl. In all of these cases, the market value of WTI is the same.

    In terms of judging whether the price of WTI is high or low, here is the price that truly matters: 0.0602 ounces of gold per barrel (which can be written as Au0.0602/bbl)

    He makes the point that since January 1, 1971, the price of a barrel of WTI crude oil has averaged Au0.0732. In other words, it’s not so much that oil is “worth” more, it’s that the US dollar is worth a lot less – and dropping. One could also say that when measuring the price of gold in dollars but:

    .. because the dollar is currently a floating, undefined, fiat currency, there is no inherent limit to how far the price of gold in dollars can rise, and therefore no ultimate ceiling on gasoline prices.

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  36. immigant (950 comments) says:

    Deane Jessep

    This isn’t your pub in Napier, stop trying to fight everyone, noob.

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  37. tom hunter (4,004 comments) says:

    And speaking of hyper-inflation – with those amazing stories about Germans in the 1920′s being paid in wheelbarrows full of cash and racing to the baker before a loaf of bread exceeded that amount – you might be interested to see that it can happen with other financial instruments as well:

    If it seems like it was only 5 days ago that Greek bonds could be had for the blockbuster yield of 638%, it is because it was.

    As of today, the same bond was yielding an even more ridiculous 763%

    Gosh, I remember when those little suckers were trading at 100% – in September 2011. I reckon 1000% by next week is doable in the world of logarithmic growth.

    And remember, Greece is not in default.

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  38. Jack5 (4,220 comments) says:

    Tom: re your 11.30 post:

    I’m not so sure that we can’t do anything about our currency.

    The Swiss have taken the top off the Swiss franc by printing more to sell to speculators.
    The Financial Times says it is simpler to put a cap on currency than to prop up an overly low one.

    It might help, too if there was less pumping up of the kiwi dollar by some bank-linked commentators, and even by NZ Treasury officials.

    Key said in November there was nothing NZ could do, that the Reserve Bank was powerless. This is much the same tack of Maurice Williams-Sung when he said his hands were tied in the Crafar bid from China. You have to be sceptical. Politicians’ interest is to keep most votoers happy, and in the short term a high kiwi dollar helps this by keeping prices of imports low. Relevant civil servants feel they are performing well, because they are getting cheaper borrowing overseas. In the long term, an overpriced currency wrecks the country.

    China successfully manages its currency. Germany did post war, and still does. The euro has chiefly benefited Germany by keeping its currency low for exporters. Think how high the mark would be now.

    The high currency is the number one economic issue for NZ right now. We should be debating how to handle this – vigorously.

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  39. Jack5 (4,220 comments) says:

    Another bone to gnaw on.

    Anyone-else get sick of sign-languagers hogging half the computer screen as officials make speeches, as in the TV coverage of the quake anniversary yesterday?

    This is conspicuous ego consumption by the politically correct. What was wrong with text captioning for the deaf who needed it? How many deaf people are both deaf and cannot read (leaving out unfortunate folk who are both deaf and blind and cannot read sign language, of course).

    Then there is also lip reading, which is taught to deaf folk, and when there is a signer beside a speaker, the speaker’s face and lips are almost always clearly visible.

    Just what proportion of the deaf actually need sign langauge. Perhaps this is all for 0.01 per cent of the country’s over-all population.

    I agree that it is a drawback to be deaf, and deaf folk warrant some extra consideration. However,
    we live in the digital age. Why not have two TV signals? One for the deaf who can’t read captions or can’t lip read? There’s tons of room on the digital spectrum. What was wrong with captioning in text that could be chosen (and perhaps still is).

    Is the barrage of signing being shoved down our TV throats the result of demands from the deaf community, or is it from huggy-huggy, multiculturists who have assessed another group they can feel righteous about? WHo will be next? Left handers? Will they demand split-screen pictures with one side mirror-inversed so that southpaws cannot be picked out from right-handers?

    I’m surprised multiculturists haven’t demanded of TV channels rows of signers for various sign languages: Kiwi sign language; Maori sign language; Tokelau, Tonga, Samoa, Niue, Cooks Islands, and Chatham Islands Moriori sign languages; Mandarin, Arabic, Somali, sign languages. Fuck the other European sign languages, of course, and especially the different dialects of sign language for Australia, England, US, etc.

    In the meantime, signers sometimes take up half the screen, and always distract the viewers with their semaphore like signals.

    Aldis lamps displaced sempahore flags three-quarters of a century ago and these been displaced by secure radio. Now satellite transmission and secure frequency changes and enciphering have all but displaced Morse completely from radio, and I presume lamps.

    Technology marches on, except for the politically correct, of whom multiculturists form the largest sect. The PC long to save doomed species, doomed languages, doomed cultures. They would freeze the past.

    I blame the demise of religion. Once these enthusiasts would just have been “saved”. The more vigorous would have been parading with signs warning the end is near, and the less vigorous merely proceeding conspicuously to church on Sundays, Bibles in hand. They were easy to ignore.

    Meanwhile, instead of pressing for technology solutions to keep deaf folk informed in the electronic age we have distracting signers cluttering TV screens. The real message either speakers or channels (or both) want to broadcast, of course, is that the wooden, immobile face to the left of the semaphore is empathetic, caring, and generally huggy-huggy. One of these counts is correct.

    We need a Horatio Nelson on this: What signal? I see no need for a friggin signal!

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  40. Manolo (12,622 comments) says:

    Well said, Jack5.

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  41. Manolo (12,622 comments) says:

    Ooops: http://news.sciencemag.org/scienceinsider/2012/02/breaking-news-error-undoes-faster.html?ref=hp

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  42. Lance (2,309 comments) says:

    @Manolo
    Bugger – Kirk to Scotty – belay that warp factor 9 order.

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  43. Monique Watson (1,062 comments) says:

    fight, fight fight.
    I wish the police tasered the dick head who kicked a front door in on my rental property in Christchurch and threatened to kill a flatmate.
    Give the police whatever it takes to stand down idiots.
    That’s a great piece from whale and re the media, they have two stories: one is National is screwing the poor and the second is The Poor are Hopeless.

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  44. peterwn (2,934 comments) says:

    LongKnives – it was the deputy Childrens Commissioner who shed the crocodile tears for those hardened little thugs in Nelson. Interestingly there is no mention of this on the Commission’s web site. Seems to be almost zilch support for her stance – Letter in today’s Dom Post was firmly in support of the police. If these teenagers want to behave like adult crims, they should expect to be treated like adult crims. It’s that simple.

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  45. Viking2 (10,712 comments) says:

    Well I guess POAL is noe well stuffed.
    Three weeks of strike starting and just to rub salt in to the wound POT reports

    Port’s shares rise on news of record profit
    JAMES WEIR
    Last updated 11:39 23/02/2012

    Port of Tauranga made a record half year profit of $34.6 million, up 22 per cent from the previous half year.

    The port declared a 20 per cent increase in interim dividend to 12 cents a share, fully imputed, from last year’s 10 cents a share. The record date for the dividend is March 9, 2012, and w
    http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/industries/6467669/Ports-shares-rise-on-news-of-record-profit

    This should give good oll Len a minor head ache.

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  46. Weihana (4,475 comments) says:

    Jack5,


    Anyone-else get sick of sign-languagers hogging half the computer screen as officials make speeches, as in the TV coverage of the quake anniversary yesterday?

    …signing being shoved down our TV throats…

    O the persecution! Where will it end?! :)

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  47. Pete George (21,806 comments) says:

    Anyone-else get sick of sign-languagers hogging half the computer screen as officials make speeches,

    I find it distracting, even irritating. I’m a bit torn between my own selfish needs/wants and reasonable catering for others who can otherwise be excluded from normal communications.

    I’d prefer it was a readily available option, not compulsory.

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  48. Scott Chris (5,677 comments) says:

    tom hunter says:- “But there’s really nothing we can do about it.”

    I disagree. A financial transactions tax will scare off speculators. Genuine commercial transactions would be exempt.

    Or print money and instead of entering it into circulation, you buy oil futures or silver with it. (I’ve been told by Bernard Hickey that this is still inflationary, but I can’t work out why)

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  49. bereal (3,137 comments) says:

    http://www.dawn.com/2012/01/14/british-student-can-be-extradited-to-us-over-website.html

    Here is a story which may be of interest to all the Kim Dotcom support team who were getting
    a bit carried away last night on GD because their hero faces extradition to the USA.

    Maybe the British police and judiciary are also under the control of the wicked FBI.

    Truly shocking eh girls ?

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  50. tom hunter (4,004 comments) says:

    Jack5

    I’ll start by dealing in reverse with your first couple of sentences:

    The Financial Times says it is simpler to put a cap on currency than to prop up an overly low one.

    Which is what the Swiss Central Bank did last year when it saw massive inflows to the Swiss Franc from people escaping the growing insanity of the Euro-zone.

    The Swiss have taken the top off the Swiss franc by printing more to sell to speculators.

    Yes. Printing more, which means inflation. And since that means that the SCB has to compete in the printing stakes with the European Central Bank, it effectively means lots and lots of inflation somewhere down the line, which is not going to do anybody in Switzerland any good, including their exporters.

    China successfully manages its currency.

    Indeed, although everybody keeps praising their “capitalist” success it’s quite apparent that they’re trying to manage a mercantile economy, which only works well up to a point, which they now appear to have reached. Their currency has been slowly but steadily rising against the US dollar for some time now as the Chinese Politburo try to balance the need for 9% per annum economic growth just to avoid riots, against massive reserves and the potential for a trade war. In any case, given how opaque they are I would not put too much credence in what they say they are doing or will do, let alone how successful it has been.

    Germany did post war

    It was called Bretton Woods and under that system everybody managed their own currency – until the whole process broke down in the early 1970′s, funnily enough because of the pressure of inflation caused by printing US dollars. Muldoon loved it and often wished that everybody would get back to it, but it is not going to happen.

    , and still does. The euro has chiefly benefited Germany by keeping its currency low for exporters.

    Yeah – mercantilism again. And how is that working out for the Germans. Great export returns for a few years leading to a supposed position of economic strength – until their customers run out of money and Germany finds itself faced with a choice between effectively repatriating much of that hard-earned cash to keep Greece, Spain and the rest afloat, or keeping the money and letting the whole thing collapse.

    Think how high the mark would be now.

    If Greece and the rest of those plonkers had not been admitted to the Eurozone or had actually been made to conform to the terms of the Maastricht Treaty, they would not be as weak now as cheap money has made them. Germany, while perhaps not being as successful in exporting, piling up as much money as they have, and generally being “strong”, would still have been in excellent economic shape. Any “high” mark would have been tempered by the fact that there are natural limits imposed by the economic strength of one’s customers: the Drachma would have slowly devalued to compensate for the real economic differences between it and other economies.

    In other words, Greeks could never have bought as many Mercedes unless they themselves were creating real wealth, their economy would not have become as weak as it has, and the resulting reduced demand would have kept the German Mark from rising too high. Not to mention that it would not have been pushed skyward by Greeks looking for a safe haven.

    It’s the typical result of trying to manage currencies and it always fails, it’s just a question of when.

    Look, as an exporter I would like nothing better than to avoid getting “hammered” by a “high” export dollar. But I remember what it was like when genius Muldoon tried to do pick the correct level (crawling peg anyone), or when the Argentinians pegged their currency to the US dollar: the results were catastrophic. Aside from anything else we would become a fat, stupid target full of taxpayer dollars for the world’s FX traders: George Soros and the UK 2.0.

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  51. Deane Jessep (53 comments) says:

    Immigrant good sir,

    Due to your ignorance of my position, me personally, the tone of the video I posted, tongue in cheek good sport, and some would say basic human respect, we find ourselves the sport of today’s general debate.

    As I am both good natured & extremely internet and kiwiblog savvy, I couldn’t care less if you decide to throw stones and ignore the fact that you started said sport, nor the fact that you think I am a noob based solely on a post counter that seldom runs up these mindless debates, even though I have been here since day one.

    So from this point, I choose to call a truce.

    Ironically, we agree with each others position on Tasers, but obviously not the idea of a bit of harmless off topic sport.

    If you would like one more chance to throw meaningless insults at me it is yours. Otherwise have a good day and good luck with the taser crusade, you have my support, if not my respect.

    ——

    And Longknives I suspect I should agree with Pete George’s view of your involvement in a hypothetical Kiwiblog championship… would any of us even make it to the bout or would you just be standing there in the morning declaring yourself the obvious victor?

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  52. Jack5 (4,220 comments) says:

    Tom:

    Re your 12.55 post. I think you are on shaky ground (should we have a new metaphor – Christchurch ground?) when you say:

    It’s the typical result of trying to manage currencies and it always fails, it’s just a question of when.

    That’s a bit like the time scale on a graph. You can make the graph portray what you want by careful selection of the time slice and the time scale. In the long run we are all dead, as Keynes famously said. In the 67 years since World War 2 ended, Germany, Japan, China have soared in economic power. All with managed currencies. Will any of these go bust in the next 20 years?

    If NZ, or what’s left of it, takes off in 2024, does that mean its 40-year free currency policy will have been an outstanding success.

    The Committee on Economic and Policy Reform, an independent group financed by US institutions, comprises international experts formerly in central banks and government, plus academics. It has been financed partly by the Alfred P. Sloan foundation and Brookings Institution.

    It’s first recommendation is that central banks should go beyond their traditional emphasis on low inflation to adopt an explicit goal of financial stability. Macroprudential tools should be used alongside monetary policy in pursuit of that objective.

    For NZ, that would mean widening the Reserve Bank target from inflation to financial stability.

    Do you think that would bring the kiwi dollar down to what people such as the Economist think is its true level?

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  53. Monique Watson (1,062 comments) says:

    Has anybody seen anything on the Hail Sage trial? Can you believe that woman – I refuse to use the term mother about Kelly Percy.

    Picture says 1000 words.

    http://nowoccupy.blogspot.com/2012/02/victoria-taylor-mother-of-week-kelly.html

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  54. kowtow (6,699 comments) says:

    manolo@1102

    The Maori veto aside, how the hell can any one call that Mexican shit “art”? I hope tax payers aren’t being milked for it.

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  55. labrator (1,691 comments) says:

    Looks like Penny Bright is not only “judicially recognised” but also council ignored: “Because everyone left, she was left talking to herself so I’m not quite sure what she was talking about.”

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  56. Manolo (12,622 comments) says:

    Fingers crossed. Is this tyrant’s end getting closer and closer? http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=CNG.19c6f015037ad49f6c0152f8c1150302.801&show_article=1

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  57. Manolo (12,622 comments) says:

    kowtow@2;02pm

    That “art” from Mexico or wherever it comes from is a big crock of shit. Nothing artistic about it.
    What made even more interesting is the conflict with Stone Age beliefs.

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  58. Nookin (2,887 comments) says:

    Labrator

    ““Because everyone left, she was left talking to herself so I’m not quite sure what she was talking about.”

    I am not altogether certain why this spokesman saw the need to attribute his lack of understanding of what she was talking about to his absence. I doubt whether his presence would have contributed to his edification. It does however raise some interesting possibilities. If all she wants to do is talk, then every time there is a Council meeting she could be parked on some isolated headland where she can address the seagulls.

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  59. Johnboy (13,386 comments) says:

    Bloody Roger Douglas.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/life-style/wellbeing/6469392/Study-looks-at-Kiwis-height-weight

    Turned us into a nation of short-arses he has. :)

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  60. tom hunter (4,004 comments) says:

    … central banks should go beyond their traditional emphasis on low inflation to adopt an explicit goal of financial stability. Macroprudential tools should be used alongside monetary policy in pursuit of that objective.

    For NZ, that would mean widening the Reserve Bank target from inflation to financial stability.

    Which sounds okay, or is at least better than some politician picking a value as Muldoon did, but may well get hung up in its own details. One would have to define “financial stability” for starters. In the US their Federal Reserve has always had a focus beyond low inflation, but their definition of financial stability apparently meant that they had to keep a lot of Wall Street banks alive, which has led to rather bad consequences that are only marginally debatable as being unforeseen. Not to mention the fact that Ben’s “core CPI index” does not actually include things like energy or food. So the US consumer is getting crushed by inflation on food and gasoline while the official inflation rate is low.

    And what exactly is meant by “macroprudential tools”? Something more or less than the econometric models central banks currently use?

    I’m afraid that even the supposed purity of focusing solely on low inflation can lead to definitional problems, let alone what happens when you expand what a central bank is supposed to “manage” beyond that. The key problem lies in your next question:

    Do you think that would bring the kiwi dollar down to what people such as the Economist think is its true level?

    I’ve no idea. What’s the “true level”? That’s the real problem and you can see it even in this thread: if the dollar is “too high” I get hurt, if it’s “too low”, dime gets hurt. So how does one decide? Both of us pay tax and suppliers that are other businesses, both here and overseas. Perhaps dime employs more people, perhaps my ROI is higher, perhaps my business has greater wealth creation potential, perhaps ….?

    You’re running into Hayeck’s information problem that hits all those who want to manage a market, be it of people, things or money. It’s not just that we cannot know what the Goldilocks value is because we need to widen our scope and improve our tools – the nature of a marketplace, let alone a national economy, means we can never know.

    Germany, Japan, China have soared in economic power. All with managed currencies. Will any of these go bust in the next 20 years?

    Japan very well may. They’ve already been in economic stagnation now for over twenty years, during which it’s debt/GDP ratio has soared to 200% plus (i.e. worse than Greece) and climbing. It still produces a lot of stuff and is a big economy but it’s in a lot of trouble that no amount of fiddling to find the “true” value of it’s currency has helped.

    Glad you mentioned that one, since it’s still very much a work in progress. Even when it becomes larger than the US economy it will still be many, many times poorer per person, which is In fact one of the big debates has been whether such a large nation can actually climb to prosperity by following Japan’s path, while avoiding what has happened to Japan.
    Part of that discussion has been endless wrangling within its government as to what the “true” value of the currency should be, since they recognise that at some point they’re going to have to boost internal consumer markets so they’re not so export oriented. Tricky to say the least and not something Japan ever really managed to do. The jury is still out.

    Germany is probably your strongest argument, but even there it’s rather hard to disentangle what you’re proposing from what they did in entering the Euro-zone, at least for the last decade. Prior to that there’s only slim evidence that Germany derived a successful economy from deliberate “management” of its exchange rate, rather than the other way around.

    It seems to me that Germany (and Japan and China) are all proof of something else, that the economic and business culture is what really matters: “fix” those and the exchange rate will look after itself. The argument you’re running is akin to claiming that GM would have been okay if only they’d got their car prices right.

    If NZ, or what’s left of it, takes off in 2024, does that mean its 40-year free currency policy will have been an outstanding success.

    If you think that currency policy is the crux upon which an economy works then the answer would be no. But even then it’s relative: what was left of NZ in 1984 almost vanished into an IMF horror show after just a couple of decades of exchange rate “management”, plus similar management for almost every other aspect of our economy. That was definitely a fail that happened.

    By contrast, while things could have been much better since 1984 it’s clear that whatever periods of tough times for exporters we’ve experienced (and this is hardly the first) our floating exchange rate has not led to the same dire situation. Our real economic problem is that we’re just not very good at creating wealth and using it to create even more. There’s lots of reasons given and argued about, but a largely unmanaged exchange rate is at the margins of those arguments.

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  61. bereal (3,137 comments) says:

    Johnboy,
    One thing you can take to the bank is that as soon as you read that the ‘research’ was done
    by some moron at Waikato University you can be sure that it is crap. Total crap.

    i could list endless conclusions that ‘Surveys” from drongos at Waikato have come up with over the years.

    Most are breathlessly reported by some drone ‘reporter’ in the Sunday Herald.

    One of the best from last year was the survey that found that 60% of sixth form school girls had been in
    a lesbian relationship.

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  62. tom hunter (4,004 comments) says:

    Grrr

    China? Glad you mentioned that one, since it’s still very much a work in progress. …..

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  63. Manolo (12,622 comments) says:

    Worshipping Gaia too? http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/religion/9098421/Pollution-goes-against-Gods-will-say-church-leaders-in-Ash-Wednesday-message.html

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  64. Jack5 (4,220 comments) says:

    Tom:

    Re your very considered post at 4.10:

    You seem to be arguing that since things aren’t as bad as the 1984 crunch, a free float is the right strategy for New Zealand.

    It would be great if we could see how NZ would have performed with a more stable currency.

    I don’t know what it is you export, but exporters from high tech products (such as Rakon) to traditional products (such as sea food, for example), have been squeezed tightly in the last year or two.

    What is true value? you ask.

    Mustn’t your view be that whatever the current value is, this is the true value?

    However, in the free-market system isn’t a currency meant to function as a balancing valve. When a country has a chronic balance of payments deficit the floating currency is supposed to correct this. Why isn’t it doing this in NZ?

    If a tiny country such as NZ finds its currency among the world’s 12 most traded, and international speculators are using bullshit interpretation of chart shapes in punts on the NZ dollar, all while current account imbalances continue, surely the market value cannot be the true value.

    If you argue it will be over time, how much time? Twenty years? Or any arbitary amount until there is an uptick?

    Germany’s extreme inflation between the world wars left them with a high tolerance for fiscal austerity, but also with a strong drive to keep their currency down and stable, and they have succeeded. If they are good at creating wealth, surely their exchange rate strategy is part of this.

    Even that bustling entrepot of Hong Kong has always had a dirty float. It had and maybe still has a currency-board system.

    To me as a layman it seems that economists who say that eventually floating rates will triumph are playing an old game of extending the X axis until there is an uptick and stopping the curve there.

    Our currency is stuffing up the country’s exports.

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  65. Jack5 (4,220 comments) says:

    Tom:

    I’ve been trying to think of an exporter who would defend the country’s floating rate currency strategy.

    How about this?

    An exporter with a service business that relies on cheaper labour in a developing country to create a service product he then re-exports to third countries?

    Am I on target? If so congratulations on your enterprise and entrepreneurship, and I can see how a high NZ currency wouldn’t bother you as you would be really an importer as well as an exporter. Sadly, NZ will never survive on the net currency gain from such exports.

    We need a better currency strategy to grow our major exporters.

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  66. bereal (3,137 comments) says:

    Dotcoms cheer team,
    lets line them up.

    Nostalgia, DJP6, Rat, ConstabuleEastbay, wat dabney, Weihana, and of course that self confessed cop hater, Viking2.

    These are the correspondents that believe Dotcom is a saint.
    They think that NZ Police and our Judiciary are controlled by the Evil FBI. And that the FBI is out to get their hero.
    You would even think that these girls would vote for a knighthood for their hero Sir Dotcom if they could.

    They have every excuse under the sun why their hero, Dotcom should not be subject to the rule of law.
    (top of their list seems to be the manner that he was arrested FFS)

    They have so little respect for the law of their own country that
    they think that New Zealand Law can be manipulated by some moguls in Hollywood.

    Some even believe that this creates the precedent that any NZ citizen can be extradited to the USA to face trumped
    up spurios charges. (i already explained to one of them that they were safe as being pig ignorant was not an extraditable offence.)
    Money laundering, racketeering ( we have a different name for that crime )are.

    i hope that they check out the link in my effort @ 12.51 today and then tell us that the Evil FBI can manipulate the whole world.

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  67. reid (15,531 comments) says:

    Anyone catch this editorial today on Loopy Len’s idiot new idea for free pools?

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=10787389

    Having detected an “overwhelming sentiment” during the election campaign to replicate Manukau’s free pools across the city, he pumped up the proposal by making it part of his “100 projects in 100 days” programme.

    Never mind that critics said there was no public call for free pools beyond Manukau, and that people were simply responding as they would to any free offer. The Mayor ploughed ahead regardless and sought confirmation of his view through a report from international consultancy KPMG.

    Why the fuck does anyone ever employ any of the big six firms if they want some decent analysis? All they do is charge massive fees and produce precisely what the client ordered them to create, using their reputation to give their vapour some weight. Well if a private business is stupid enough to spend its own money like that, which they often do, then that’s fine, although the managers that engage them should be fired for gross incompetence by definition. But when a public body spends OPM like that, it’s not fine at all.

    This is the second time the idiot mayor has a brain fart then desperately justifies it by engaging incredibly expensive and in this case, clearly incompetent consultants, merely to give him the precise opinion he is looking for so he can use it as a publicity tool in the hope one or two village idiots will think he’s got a good idea.

    I really hope KPMG’s reputation is dragged through the mud for this, they clearly deserve it. And I hope Aucklanders don’t forget this pattern which the mayor uses when they next vote. Neither will happen of course, but it should.

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  68. wat dabney (3,445 comments) says:

    A financial transactions tax will scare off speculators

    It’s the speculators who dampen wild swings in prices.

    You want speculators in a market.

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  69. Johnboy (13,386 comments) says:

    Quite right Beryl.

    Dotcom should be indited right here in Godzone by the fat police for the really bad example he sets for our kids.

    “Eat junk food to hugely fat excess, become rich internet celebrity. ” :)

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  70. bereal (3,137 comments) says:

    Maybe he could be appointed to the chair of “Fat Studies” at Waikato University.

    They would have to make the chair a bit bigger but.

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  71. wat dabney (3,445 comments) says:

    How is the UK’s higher tax rate working out?

    The amount of income tax paid fell sharply last month in the first formal indication that the new 50p higher rate is not raising the expected amount of revenue.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/consumertips/tax/9097219/50p-tax-rate-failing-to-boost-revenues.html

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  72. Steve (4,318 comments) says:

    @reid 6.03pm

    Len is a smart cookie. If he closes the six Manukau pools he saves $6.7M. He then has $5.5M to run the 18 left so he has a surplus of $1.2M
    Nice deposit for a train set. I would not trust Len as far as I could kick the prick

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  73. Nostalgia-NZ (4,686 comments) says:

    bereal

    You feeling lonely again?
    Why don’t you take your hand off your wallet and buy a parrot?
    That English case is under appeal and the political will that was behind
    it is wavering.

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  74. nasska (9,501 comments) says:

    An Aussie pirate walks into a bar with a wooden leg, a hook and an eye patch.
    The Barman says ‘Sheesh – How’d you lose the leg’

    The Pirate says ‘Arrrrr – A shark took it off at the knee’

    The Barman says ‘Thats no good, what about the hand?’

    The Piarate says ‘Arrrrg – Lost it in a bloody bar brawl’

    The Barman says ‘Jeez – Well what about the eye then?’

    The Pirate says ‘Thats easy a seagul crapped in it’

    The Barman says ‘What?!?!’

    The Pirate says ‘Arrrrrrr…I’d only had the hook one day…’

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  75. Viking2 (10,712 comments) says:

    Quite right. The case is months old and is being appealed.

    Envy won’t get you anything breal.

    anyway what do you suck that makes you such an arse?

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  76. bereal (3,137 comments) says:

    Jeez,
    even Dotcom himself would be begging his apologists like Viking2 and Nostalgia to please shut the fuck up.

    Poor old Dotcom needs help from morons like you like he needs a hole in the head.

    The next thing he needs is for a huge intellect like, say, wat dabney to spring to his aid to help those poor sooks.
    Viking2 and Nostalgia, these morons could really need all the help they could get from a huge brain like wat.

    youse whole crew are just a joke.

    The whole lot of yus combined don’t ammount to even half an argument.

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  77. Nostalgia-NZ (4,686 comments) says:

    Thanks very much bereal.
    It has been a deliberate and conspired effort to keep to less than half an argument. Because, exempting yourself of course, it is necessary for half wits to be able to follow what so obviously eludes you.

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  78. bereal (3,137 comments) says:

    Poor dear Nostalgia, re read the puke you just posted @ 9.10
    Who the fuck could understand what that meant. Not you babe.
    i rest my case.
    G’nite.
    Good luck to your family.

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  79. Nostalgia-NZ (4,686 comments) says:

    Have a good one.

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  80. Manolo (12,622 comments) says:

    The Messiah says sorry: http://news.yahoo.com/obama-expresses-deep-regret-over-koran-burning-130521907.html

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