General Debate 4 March 2014

March 4th, 2014 at 8:00 am by Kokila Patel
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123 Responses to “General Debate 4 March 2014”

  1. JMS (342 comments) says:

    Perhaps what is needed here is another western led Crimean War, one that will teach Russia a lesson,
    like 160 years ago. Russia’s air force is utterly inferior to the USAF. No ground troops this time, just air strikes on Russian occupying forces in the Ukraine.

    Russians by nature are not big risk takers. History shows they pick fights only with weak countries,
    fight strong countries only when they are forced to(and then succeed only when helped by other
    strong countries).
    Obviously they will not use nuclear weapons provided their own territory is not attacked.

    The only problem with this scenario: gutless Obama.

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  2. kowtow (8,784 comments) says:

    Human rights,isn’t it great?

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2572071/Police-ask-public-identify-knife-wielding-robber-using-THIS-picture-face-completely-hidden-say-call-suspect-breach-HUMAN-RIGHTS.html

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  3. igm (1,413 comments) says:

    What is planned for the ousting of Lecher Len and the obese German felon today. Hope they are not being given a free ride at the expense of ratepayers and taxpayers? They both must be gone real soon.

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  4. Bovver (173 comments) says:

    There will be zero chance of military intervention by the US, even Bush wouldn’t have gone that far. The Russian air force may not stack up against the US but SAM’s would decimate any attack, plus the fact that any military intervention will lead to the whole situation spiraling out of control.

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  5. Andrei (2,668 comments) says:

    Perhaps what is needed here is another western led Crimean War, one that will teach Russia a lesson,
    like 160 years ago.

    LOL the British and the French lost a lot of lives protecting Ottoman interests and Russia kept Crimea

    As you’ll recall even more recently the Germans took Crimea in 1942 at huge cost to themselves but were soon gone and paid an even greater price, and Berlin ended up in ruins

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  6. iMP (2,422 comments) says:

    ON NO, Michael laws is moving to Canterbury. As if the earthquakes weren’t enough.

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  7. Andrei (2,668 comments) says:

    History shows they pick fights only with weak countries

    And when was the last time the USA won a war?

    That’s right they took on the military might of Grenada about thirty years ago and achieved a decisive victory

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  8. igm (1,413 comments) says:

    If the obese German criminal is one of Cunliffe’s donors, surely this is interfering in our political system? If this is so, he should be put on the next plane and thrown to hell out of here, along with any supporters. He is a vile interfering alien, and a dangerous one, owing a lot of money around town.

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  9. itstricky (1,904 comments) says:

    What if the ‘obese German criminal’ is one of John Banks’ donors?

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  10. Souvlaki (46 comments) says:

    Great news the royal family won’t have to be “mooned” or insulted in other ways at Ngaruawahia !!

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  11. JMS (342 comments) says:

    As you’ll recall even more recently the Germans took Crimea in 1942 at huge cost to themselves but were soon gone and paid an even greater price, and Berlin ended up in ruins

    But Russia/USSR had massive US and British help in that war. Without it, Moscow would have ended up in ruins.

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  12. Harriet (5,145 comments) says:

    On September 30th, 1938, Adolf Hitler, Benito Mussolini, French Premier Edouard Daladier, and British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain signed the Munich Pact, which sealed the fate of Czechoslovakia, virtually handing it over to Germany in the name of peace. Upon returning to Britain, Chamberlain would declare that the meeting had achieved “peace in our time.”

    What Churchill then said about Chamberlain in 1938 could very well fit here about Obama:

    “You were given the choice between war and dishonor. You chose dishonor, and you will have war.”

    Obama is the very reason that pot should not be made legal in NZ – as you forget things that are vital. :cool:

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  13. Andrei (2,668 comments) says:

    But Russia had massive US and British help in that war. Without it, Moscow would have ended up in ruins.

    See you don’t actually know any real history and just display abysmal ignorance with that statement

    The Battle of Moscow took place in 1941 and the Germans were in retreat from Moscow before the USA even entered WW2

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  14. Pete George (23,687 comments) says:

    Did anyone go to one of the Bruce Springsteen concerts? They were obviously popular but the only musical coverage I’ve heard is Springsteen’s cover of Lorde’s ‘Royal. I thought that was awful and by far the worst cover I’ve heard. Perhaps he did his own songs better.

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  15. Left Right and Centre (2,997 comments) says:

    LR&C meltdown number one today:

    Fucking ukuleles…..

    I hate the sound of the fucking things. Who are the insufferable cunts who (1) enjoy hearing the fucking shit awful sound of them on radio and TV (2) inflict this horror on good people making every second advert contain the bland retarded strumming of a tinny shitpot cheap nasty sounding instrument that you’d be pissing yourself with disappointment to get from a xmas cracker.

    There was one advert that it worked for. One. I think it was Telecom and the tune sounded a bit like ‘Over The Rainbow’. And then all of these marketing fuckwits had to take that success, copy it – and suck the well dry like there’s no tomorrow. Either that or it’s some concerted campaign to make the ukulele the national instrument of NZ. Let’s hope not.

    The welcome to hell committee is going to be a million out of tune amped up ukuleles at the sound level of a fucking airbus taking off playing the fucking Warehouse jingle. Not in unison – randomly. Then when you get used to it – yes, in unison – while the devil jams a ukulele up your backside, adds some strings to your torso – and turns you into a human-sized ukulele that makes a sound more painful than being stabbed viciously in your meat and two veg with 10 000 freshly sharpened ginsu knives.

    Less ukuleles, bagpipes, panpipes, xylophones and accordians – more cool stuff. What’s cool ? I don’t know – even those fucking buskers whose net worth is wrapped up in their amp and guitar are better than this fucking bullshit people are subjected to on TV and radio advertising. Have these sadistic pricks ever actually wondered what the fuck people enjoy listening to ? No – they love arousing feelings of homicide. That’s their job. You might want to kill someone – but they think they’ve won because they got you. Just makes me more determined to turn off all advertising noise pollution.

    There’s only one good thing about a fucking ukulele – and that is that it’s a lot easier and less effort to smash into a million pieces than a piano.

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  16. Bovver (173 comments) says:

    The Russians have always been on the Crimean peninsula, Obama not smoking wouldn’t have helped.

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  17. JMS (342 comments) says:

    See you don’t actually know any real history and just display abysmal ignorance with that statement

    I’d test my history knowledge against your (lack of it) any day.

    Russia/USSR could only ever defeat Germany, if Germany was fighting a two front war. In WW1 a mere quarter of the German army had them on the ropes before the Bolshevik revolution even began.

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  18. Judith (8,534 comments) says:

    @ LRC

    There is another good thing about the ukulele – its not a blardy recorder. Recorders are far more damaging to the sensitivities than the ukulele – and harder to smash.

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  19. flipper (4,231 comments) says:

    The NZ Herald nailed Bush and Tolley yesterday over the Arthur Thomas gaff… and the Dom Post does it today.

    ” ….Tolley has dismissed Mr Bush’s eulogy remarks as a mere lapse, a small thing that can be overlooked. Nonsense. Mr Bush said in his eulogy that, “It’s a great tragedy and an irony that a man of such great character should have been subject to those accusations.”

    These were not “accusations”. A Royal Commission found Mr Hutton guilty of planting evidence. A policeman who plants evidence is not “a man of great character”. The right police response to Mr Hutton’s actions should have been to been at least as ashamed as the constable was in the case of …. ”

    The only way Bush can remedy this situation is, on the day he takes office, to present himself to Arthur Thomas and his family, and apologise publicly, in person.

    Is he man enough???

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  20. Judith (8,534 comments) says:

    @ flipper (3,166 comments) says:
    March 4th, 2014 at 9:01 am

    An apology yes, and a public withdrawal and admission that the comments he made were incorrect.

    The public need to know that the police are advocates of the truth, not fantasy. Who better to give that message than the head.

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  21. Pete George (23,687 comments) says:

    @tmurphyNZH

    Colin Craig suspends defamation action against @RusselNorman over ‘gays’ place in the closet — will sue only on ‘women’s place in kitchen

    Craig has made some very questionable comments about gays and it had been made clear they would have been used against him. He is on stronger ground on the women in kitchen comment but it won’t be an easy case to win – if he actually believes it’s winnable.

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  22. JMS (342 comments) says:

    The Battle of Moscow took place in 1941 and the Germans were in retreat from Moscow before the USA even entered WW2

    And it took them 3 years, with massive US and British help, to regain what the Germans took in 6 months.

    My point is: on their own the Russians are hopeless fighters. Even with US UK help they lost 4 for every German killed.

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  23. kowtow (8,784 comments) says:

    JMS

    You’re nuts.

    The west have assisted(may have even instigated) an anti Russian coup in Ukraine.Overthrowing a democratically elected govt. Russia responds .The Russians are dead right to tell the White House and the loon Eurocrats (who are empire building at the expense of Russia) to fuck off.

    And you want a war!

    In the west our leaders seem to want cheap victories at the expense of others and not be prepared to face the consequences.

    Syria and Libya come to mind.

    Meanwhile we break off talks with the Russkies over free trade but John Key is off to the Imperial palace in Peking to kowtow to one of the most oppressive , undemocratic and militarised regimes in the world.

    Kowtow,kowtow.

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  24. Pete George (23,687 comments) says:

    Press Release: Conservative Party

    Craig Continues Push for Honesty

    Colin Craig today advised that the defamation claim against Russell Norman will be split into two stages in the hope of fast tracking a court hearing.

    “After extensive discussion and advice from my legal team, I’ve decided to proceed immediately against Mr Norman regarding his claims about the place of women,” says Mr Craig.

    “Not only were Mr Norman’s comments entirely untrue, but they demonstrated a cavalier and reckless disregard for the truth.”

    “Debates should be won by presenting the facts, not by corrupting them,” Mr Craig says. “I think the public deserve an honest debate.”

    “A high standard of public debate is essential to a properly functioning democracy. I, like most New Zealanders, am tired of politicians corrupting the facts, making up stories, name calling, and generally behaving badly in political debate,” Mr Craig says.

    “The reason the rest of Mr Norman’s comment will not be pursued in the first instance is that his lawyers have already indicated that discovery would include emails and other correspondence. Given the extensive debate around the redefinition of marriage, this is many hundreds, if not thousands of documents, and would result in prohibitive costs and time delays.”

    “It is hoped by breaking the case into two stages, that a declaration of defamation may be obtained prior to the election this year.”

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  25. wreck1080 (3,972 comments) says:

    corby must like the inside of an indonesian prison. Why on earth is she provoking the authorities over there?

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  26. flipper (4,231 comments) says:

    Judith…
    Absolutely.

    To paraphrase the late Justice Peter Mahon, on another Government cover up…. “an orchestrated litany of lies.”

    Enough is enough. No more orchestrated “evidence”. :-)

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  27. JMS (342 comments) says:

    Kowtow,

    there wouldn’t be a war.

    The Russians would back down.

    Crimea is not Russia.

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  28. Harriet (5,145 comments) says:

    “……The Russians have always been on the Crimean peninsula, Obama not smoking wouldn’t have helped…”

    Really? When Kennedy looked weak we got the Cubin missle crisis. When Carter looked weak we got the Afganistan war.

    Putin is establishing a naval presence in Venezuela and Cuba. He already has a major naval base in Syria. He wants to control Middle Eastern oil, and by making Iran and Saudi Arabia dependent on him, he just might be able to do it.
    In 1783 the Crimea was annexed by Catherine the Great, thereby satisfying the longstanding quest of the Russian Czars for a warm-water port. In fact, over the ages Sevastopol emerged as a great naval base at the strategic tip of the Crimean peninsula, where it became home to the mighty Black Sea Fleet of the Czars and then the commissar. For the next 171 years Crimea was an integral part of Russia.

    Whether Russia conquers a neighbour, or our hate filled domestic enemies conquer the NZ education system, or the media, or allow millions of foreign likeminded invaders into NZ to swell their left ranks, the end result is always the same – conquest and a new order of things.

    To the victors goes the spoils. :cool:

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  29. Ed Snack (1,927 comments) says:

    Judith, as a follow up to an earlier GD discussion on Eugenics and the left, try reading this link: http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/danielhannan/100260720/whenever-you-mention-fascisms-socialist-roots-left-wingers-become-incandescent-why/

    Included in it is this quote taken from George Bernard Shaw ( a Fabian socilaist) in 1933:

    “Extermination must be put on a scientific basis if it is ever to be carried out humanely and apologetically as well as thoroughly… If we desire a certain type of civilisation and culture we must exterminate the sort of people who do not fit into it.”

    Nice !

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  30. Don the Kiwi (1,794 comments) says:

    Russia will take back the Crimea – it will be an independent region affiliated to the Russian Federation. The majority of the population are Russians. If a plebiscite were held, they would vote overwhelmingly to return to Russia.

    In the meantime, Europe sabre-rattles futilely, Obama bumbles on with empty rhetoric. The dust will settle in a month or so, and John Key will again be talking FTA with Russia, the postponed Sochi G8 talks will resume, and all will be right with the world, and Czar Vladimir.

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  31. Andrei (2,668 comments) says:

    My point is: on their own the Russians are hopeless fighters.

    Lol – The Teutonic Knights, the Tartars, The Poles, Napoleon and Hitler all thought that and all found out otherwise to their great cost.

    German soldiers finally get to parade through the streets of Moscow

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  32. JMS (342 comments) says:

    Andrei,

    study a little history,

    you will find the that man for man the Russians are simply inferior, even when they are receiving help from modern industrialised countries.

    They can only win a war with the combination of overwhelming numbers and massive outside help. At least when fighting the Germans that is.

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  33. Elaycee (4,410 comments) says:

    @wreck1080 (9.21am): I suspect Corby has been given very poor advice by her sister.

    And the suggestion there has been no payment / promise of payment for her ‘exclusive’ interview??? Pah-lease!

    It’s patently obvious the Indonesians are strong on the rule of Law and they take no crap from prisoners / jailbirds on parole. If the parole rules have been broken, Corby will soon be back behind bars.

    And one day, the penny may drop for morons who travel with shit in their kit….

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  34. Lucia Maria (2,609 comments) says:

    I agree with JMS on everything except I don’t think the Russians will back down. And, I wouldn’t say the Russians were inferior, either, I mean, they’d kinda family, you know, given that I’m Polish. It’s just that years and years of societal breakdown has an impact. But they won’t back down, of that I’m sure.

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  35. MT_Tinman (3,261 comments) says:

    wreck1080 (3,401 comments) says:
    March 4th, 2014 at 9:21 am
    corby must like the inside of an indonesian prison. Why on earth is she provoking the authorities over there?

    Why should the fate of Ocker drug scum concern a NZer?

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  36. JMS (342 comments) says:

    Lucia Maria,

    I don’t mean inferior as human beings, just at fighting.

    And if they don’t back down, it’s only because they weren’t pushed hard enough.

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  37. gump (1,662 comments) says:

    @Judith

    “There is another good thing about the ukulele – its not a blardy recorder. Recorders are far more damaging to the sensitivities than the ukulele – and harder to smash.”

    ————————

    The trick with the recorder is that you don’t need to smash it.

    You just arrange for the mouthpiece to go ‘missing’.

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  38. iMP (2,422 comments) says:

    WAR in UKRAINE. What to think?

    The Ukraine has suffered many wars, including civil wars, and politically-induced famines, killing many millions. It is a distinct state with its own history, but is sandwiched between Poland, Russia, and was part of the Soviet Union. Politics is confused because the Ukraine has suffered mass deportations, ethnic cleansing, and rigorous immigration and settlement policies.

    In modern times, especially after WWII, it became an industrialised power base. It is where Chernobyl is. It is also where we get the word “Balaclava” from after the Crimean war.

    Modern Russia has cultural, population, and military interests in the Ukraine/Crimea (also a distinct area). For example, the Ukraine and Crimea allied themselves with Russia against Turkey in the Russo-Turkish War (1768–1774).

    Right now, the Ukraine has no government, which has collapsed, so it is a collection of different ethnic groups who relate to the geography. For that reason, Russia has moved in (without firing a shot) to secure its interests and maintain stability (avoid messy civil war -ala Syria) which could very well spill-over in to Russia.

    Posturing by European powers and America over this border incursion is not helpful. Nations should remain focussed on the Ukrainian political crisis rather than using Ukraine as a theatre for Super Power posturing and wider interests.

    I note Putin has already agreed to talks, and from what I’ve read, is open to discussions to secure stability. He has a right to secure Russian assets there, in the current instability, and frankly, Russia is a stablising force in the current context.

    However, elements within the Ukraine are going to war because of this incursion. That is also their right. But “the People of Ukraine” is a moveable definition. Many “Ukrainians” relate to Russia, others to the EU, so this is ill-defined. The collapse of polity in Ukraine relates, in part, to demonstrations and protest of whereUkraine should ally (EU or Russia). So, this is about divided loyalties and identity (same as the American Civil War).

    I hope the forces bordering each other will be wise, talk and discuss, rather than posture and fire bullets, which will achieve little before they are forced to talk and discuss, anyway.

    This is not I think a ‘land grab’ but various interests moving to secure their interests and protect their borders as well as populations of different ethnicities with whom they have direct ties.

    These issues have all been fought out before, in various wars, including a “Crimean War.” Let’s hope modern minds can avoid that all again and the: borders, government and interests of its diverse population, be accommodated in mutual peace in some form of polity that Russia, Poland and local politicians can accommodate.

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  39. iMP (2,422 comments) says:

    I think Colin Craig is being pretty clever here. At best, Norman’s “closet” comment was mild and a matter of opinion. Opinion is a valid defense in Defamation. Having been drawn into a lengthy and controversial maelstrom over “gay equality” and marriage in 2013, arguing the closet thing would draw the Conservative Party back into the ‘anti-gay’ arena, surely something they wish to avoid. The disclosure and documents he mentions in the press release (above) would mire them down in gay rhetoric and nothing would be won.

    But nailing Russell Normon over his sexist kitchen comments is another matter. Colin Craig has appointed several intelligent women to high posts, including as CEO of his party. Championing this cause as a Defamation case puts Norman in a very bad place, with brownie points abounding for Craig. He has a right to defend himself against an unprovoked slur he is a sexist 1950s stick-in-the-mud.

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  40. stephieboy (3,414 comments) says:

    Andrei, you need to be challenged on a number of points.
    First in His memoirs Nikita Khrrushev made a significant admission which was acknowledging the importance of US aid to the Soviets during WW2 .This among many things. was the supply of Studebaker military trucks used to move Red Army Troops on the Eastern Front.A much and overlooked fact that Russian Chauvinism continues to downplay.
    The Crimean War was not about removing Russia from there
    but about checking it’s expansion South. This was achieved by the alliance of France,Britain and the Ottoman Empire able to inflict what was in effect. a humiliating defeat on Russia .
    More to follow.

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  41. Reid (16,634 comments) says:

    study a little history, you will find the that man for man the Russians are simply inferior, even when they are receiving help from modern industrialised countries.

    This is of course history written by western historians. Because of course that’s the only possible source of “truth.”

    A lot of people underestimate the Russians and always have. For instance back in the 50’s during the Cold War the West captured a Mig and took it apart and discovered it had valves not transistors. Sophisticated valves but nevertheless the Western scientists all laughed and laughed. Until that is they discovered EMP and realised those Migs would have kept flying while all of their planes would fall out of the sky.

    Russian soldiers today have an excellent fighting reputation but especially in their generalship, which is really critical and who are considered by many to be superior to anything the west has to offer.

    But they won’t back down, of that I’m sure.

    No they won’t. The Russians are very calculating and they never make a move without thinking it through.

    What many don’t seem to get is that this is not aggression on the part of Russia its defence since it knows that Ukraine, just like Syria, Libya, Egypt, Venezuela, is not repeat not a grassroots uprising but a UKUSA-backed regime-change operation. But this one is happening in its own backyard and being surprised about it is the equivalent of being surprised about the US invading Mexico if the Russians attempted the same in that country.

    The question that should be being asked is what sort of roaring mental in the US command structure would consider doing that, in the Russian’s own backyard? What pray tell is their calculation? (Given that even if they’re roaringly mental, they’re not naive, and they never had a hope of doing it thinking the Russians wouldn’t notice it.) So is it like the US military during Cuba, who were urging Kennedy to launch? Is that what’s happened? Or is it something different?

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  42. thedavincimode (6,877 comments) says:

    PG

    I’d always assumed that the only reason promoters try and stop pirate videos at concerts was the money. But perhaps it is as much to stop the damage to an artist’s reputation when an inherently shithouse smart phone recording is uploaded that sounds nothing like the artist’s performance. The artist then gets slagged off by people who don’t know any better.

    Something like 40,000 people who were there and went nuts don’t agree with your critical review and in fact, I can recall seeing one review to the effect that Springsteen’s interpretation made it his own.

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  43. Than (500 comments) says:

    Craig has made some very questionable comments about gays and it had been made clear they would have been used against him. He is on stronger ground on the women in kitchen comment but it won’t be an easy case to win – if he actually believes it’s winnable.

    The merits of the case are irrelevant, it’s still politically silly of Craig to pursue this. If he wins all he gets is an empty apology that Norman won’t mean. And win or lose he is giving the Greens a public forum with the sole purpose of picking apart every statement he has ever made for evidence of sexism or homophobia. Russell Norman will be loving this.

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  44. Harriet (5,145 comments) says:

    Top stuff imp.

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  45. J Bloggs (250 comments) says:

    A comment I read somewhere that has always stuck with me was to the effect that much of international relations between the US and USSR (as it was at the time) can be understood when you consider the national game in the USA is poker; while in Russia, it’s chess.

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  46. iMP (2,422 comments) says:

    John Moore via Bryce Edwards, has an excellent article on the Greens vs Conservative leaders stoush, which he views as a cynical re-positioning of the Green party introducing US-style demonisation politics into NZ.

    A great read.

    http://liberation.typepad.com/liberation/2014/03/john-moore-the-demonisation-of-colin-craig.html#comment-6a00d83451d75d69e201a73d868abd970d

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  47. Harriet (5,145 comments) says:

    “….The merits of the case are irrelevant, it’s still politically silly of Craig to pursue this. If he wins all he gets is an empty apology that Norman won’t mean…”

    Hardly.

    It’s the best thing that could happen….Mr Craig now gets to say ‘how he isn’t sexist’ by saying that he stands up for the welfare of women, because women suffer under abortion….society places demands on women to abort…..ect ect.

    Mr Craig now gets to pick and choose whatever topic about women he thinks will get the left on the defence….porn….no faults divorce……

    Alls good! :cool:

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  48. Pete George (23,687 comments) says:

    Something like 40,000 people who were there and went nuts don’t agree with your critical review

    Not sure how you can judge the views of 40,000 people. I saw what should have been a reasonable quality =version of TV news as well as crowd recordings.

    Mixed comments on Youtube
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e6VToqhUd-0

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  49. wiseowl (936 comments) says:

    Just sat down for smoko.

    Read LR&C.

    Smashed my ukulele.
    Now I feel better.

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  50. Lucia Maria (2,609 comments) says:

    JMS,

    I don’t mean inferior as human beings, just at fighting.

    Yeah, I understood that from your comment, but felt I had to add my own clarification, since I was agreeing with you.

    I think if you don’t have a strong reason to fight, then it’s not there. The Russians can be devastating when they are motivated (as individuals) and when they have adequate equipment. Thinking back to WWII, I do know that equipment was seriously lacking and ill-equipped and starved men were used as cannon fodder. No one really fights well, when they have guns pointed at them from their own side as well as the enemy.

    And if they don’t back down, it’s only because they weren’t pushed hard enough.

    Who is going to do that? No one in the West is man enough to play chicken with Putin.

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  51. Reid (16,634 comments) says:

    it’s still politically silly of Craig to pursue this

    Why?

    By now everyone’s heard of Craig courtesy of the free and ongoing publicity. And those who are considering possibly maybe voting for him are by definition not part of the 2-digit IQ brigade, he’s aiming for thinkers, that’s where his appeal is and it’s where it’s always been.

    And thinkers can see straight through superficial issues which are all the gawping 2-digit brigade focus on, like whether or not he’ll win in court and can focus instead of what he’s really doing and has done since day one on this issue: making a point.

    As I said some weeks ago, win or lose in the law court, he wins in the court of his potential voter pool. Good on him. For an amateur just learning the ropes, he’s doing pretty well.

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  52. MT_Tinman (3,261 comments) says:

    I note the Ocker bowling attack has done for yet another opposition top order batsman.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/sport/cricket/9787414/South-African-captain-Graeme-Smith-calls-it-quits

    What damage will this lot do to NZ’s top order in ’15/’16?

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  53. flipper (4,231 comments) says:

    The Ukraine situation would be amusing were it not for similarities with the past.

    “Mr Heinz”, aka Kerry, really is out of his depth….and Obama (according to Reuters) buys a fight with Bennie Netanyahu while saying “Booo” to Putin.

    Coming on top of his proposed defence cut budget (which will never survive the Congress), he does pick his moments. But then perhaps others pick them for him.

    Putin’s timing is reminiscent of Hitler’s.
    I have just re-read Churchill’s “Wilderness Years”. Dead ringer in many respects….and the “moonbeats” in New York are just as useless as the League was.
    Are Kerry and Hague trying to look like Halifax? No. I do not believe they are as bad as he was – yet.

    Still we in NZ are right to “rely” on Moon et al. Our 6m aluminium, runabout armed with a .5 mm Browning would not be much of a deterrent.

    Incidentally, Tom Clancy’s “Command Authority” published in December last rehearses the Ukraine/Crimea situation to a T. But Obama is not “President Jack Ryan”.

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  54. Lucia Maria (2,609 comments) says:

    Reid,

    But they won’t back down, of that I’m sure.

    No they won’t. The Russians are very calculating and they never make a move without thinking it through.

    What many don’t seem to get is that this is not aggression on the part of Russia its defence since it knows that Ukraine, just like Syria, Libya, Egypt, Venezuela, is not repeat not a grassroots uprising but a UKUSA-backed regime-change operation. But this one is happening in its own backyard and being surprised about it is the equivalent of being surprised about the US invading Mexico if the Russians attempted the same in that country.

    No, this is aggression. Otherwise the Russians would be asking the Ukranian Parliament if they need help.

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  55. flipper (4,231 comments) says:

    Tinman….
    Different game… different rules. Still….
    But surely things will be better when Jesse returns for Hesson’s bad boy corner.

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  56. Andrei (2,668 comments) says:

    No, this is aggression. Otherwise the Russians would be asking the Ukranian Parliament if they need help.

    There is no legitimate Government in Kiev – just a bunch of posers installed by an armed mob who can’t even control the streets of Kiev let alone the rest of the country. :(

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  57. J Bloggs (250 comments) says:

    PG: Thanks for posting the youtube link. I only caught a glimpse of it on the TV news, and thought he’d done well, but being able to see the whole vid brings home just how good a job he did of turning that song into his style and message. A lot better than some of the covers I’ve had the misfortune to witness.

    And Lorde won’t be unhappy with the royalties she’d be getting either :)

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  58. Reid (16,634 comments) says:

    No, this is aggression. Otherwise the Russians would be asking the Ukranian Parliament if they need help.

    Lucia it’s aggression from the UKUSA. The UKUSA, as always happens in regime change, have enlisted a certain element within the current leadership of the target country to cooperate and assist in their takeover, on the promise they will be granted the spoils. That’s how it works.

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  59. kowtow (8,784 comments) says:

    This by special request for LR&C

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  60. Pete George (23,687 comments) says:

    And Lorde won’t be unhappy with the royalties she’d be getting either.

    Yes – Royals must be one of the most rapidly and widely covered songs ever. There’s a lot of interesting versions.

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  61. Lucia Maria (2,609 comments) says:

    Reid,

    Lucia it’s aggression from the UKUSA. The UKUSA, as always happens in regime change, have enlisted a certain element within the current leadership of the target country to cooperate and assist in their takeover, on the promise they will be granted the spoils. That’s how it works.

    I find that difficult to believe. They’d have to be complete and utter morons if that were the case.

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  62. Manolo (14,082 comments) says:

    A proud and lazy truck driver says no: http://news.msn.co.nz/nationalnews/8808788/maori-king-rejects-royal-visit

    The Maori King has turned down a visit from Prince William during his upcoming tour of New Zealand, saying the time slot offered was too short.

    Prime Minister John Key says the palace offered King Tuheitia’s advisers an opportunity for a 90-minute visit to Turangawaewae Marae, but this was turned down because it wasn’t long enough.

    “They were offered a 90-minute slot, that was longer than pretty much any other engagement that they had,” Mr Key told reporters on Monday.

    What a pathetic individual this “king” is.

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  63. Reid (16,634 comments) says:

    I find that difficult to believe. They’d have to be complete and utter morons if that were the case.

    Observe what happened in Libya and draw your own conclusions.

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  64. Andrei (2,668 comments) says:

    I find that difficult to believe. They’d have to be complete and utter morons if that were the case.

    They are – which is why Vladimir Vladimirovich is running rings around them and has been for some time.

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  65. dirty harry (517 comments) says:

    maori king…lol..I can hear the sighs of relief coming from Windsor Castle..

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  66. Than (500 comments) says:

    It’s the best thing that could happen….Mr Craig now gets to say ‘how he isn’t sexist’

    Unless you are 100% confident that nothing Craig has ever said can be even vaguely interpreted, deliberately misinterpreted, or taken out of context to imply he holds sexist views, then taking this to court is silly.

    If you believe the MSM doesn’t give Craig fair coverage, how fair do you think the Greens legal team will be? Their entire defense (which aligns with their political purpose) is to show how somebody could honestly believe Craig holds outdated sexist views, and they will twist his words any way they have to to do that.

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  67. thedavincimode (6,877 comments) says:

    PG

    If you think that sounds anything like the live version then you need to stop listening to music on your old crystal set and actually go to a concert. My old crystal set was shaped like a rocket and I vaguely recall that the nose cone had broken off at some stage – what does yours look like?

    However, if you have decided it’s crap then good on you. Similarly, if a bunch of similar-minded people who weren’t there and who download and listen to music in mp3 format or on crap ghetto-blasters also think it was crap, then good on them too.

    The people who can discern the difference between quality recordings and tin can recordings and who know what instruments and voices actually sound like live will know that that recording would sound nothing like the live performance, which is my point. If there were any people who didn’t like it, then they are expressing an opinion based on reality; but they too will know that the pirate versions sound nothing like the live performance.

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  68. Pete George (23,687 comments) says:

    It’s not just quality of the recording, it’s the style he sung and played it that I didn’t like. I like some of Springsteen’s music but I didn’t like this. It’s no big deal, if you and others liked it then fine.

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  69. Fletch (6,497 comments) says:

    LOL, LR&C, I’m not a huge fan of the Uke, but there are those who can work wonders on it. Here’s a guy playing Bohemian Rhapsody –

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  70. kowtow (8,784 comments) says:

    Why the hell is the govt offering the truck driver 90 mins with our royalty?

    Was it at the insistence of the maori party?The tail wagging the dog again.

    In any event the maori side has shown disrespect of the highest order,proof (if needed at all)that the nation shouldn’t be kowtowing to these separatist wannabes in the first place.

    National really are a soft touch.They need to stick to their principles and bin all this racist, apartheid bullshit.

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  71. thedavincimode (6,877 comments) says:

    PG

    Then why didn’t you just say so? Why lead off with such ignorant, naff and mean spirited observations? And then this:

    Perhaps he did his own songs better.

    FFS, love him or loathe him, he’s a legend. 5 star reviews in Oz for this show, rave reviews here, 40,000 people going bonkers at the venue. Meanwhile, down in Dunedin, music critic P George wonders whether he did his own songs better. Pfft.

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  72. lolitasbrother (751 comments) says:

    About Christchurch future and Earthquake Insurance over homes

    David Cunliffe fake sloganeer, ostentatious and treacherous

    Earthquake / Insurance

    David Cunliffe
    Go to the David Cunliffe facebook site to see utterly meaningless slogans and a total lack of substance . : David Cunliffe said he wants to establish a Kiwi Insurance Company, which would provide housing Insurance.
    Sounds good but I can’t find any detail.

    1. Which overseas Companies would underwrite Earthquake Insurance in New Zealand
    2. Lets say a Labour Government could encourage 100,000 householders to insure with Kiwi Home Insurance at $1000 a year.
    Thats an income of 100 million dollars a year
    3 Lets say tens of billions of dollars for an Earthquake like Christchurch, [ 50 billion and climbing ]
    4. This means you need about 50 years to save for one big earthquake, and I haven’t even taken in costings of Non Earthquake claims

    It doesn’t work, I don’t think. And this is scary
    If David Cullen’s people could show me how a Kiwi Insurance can operate and will benefit New Zealanders
    I will vote for him, and so will a lot of other people.

    EQC Insurance
    How much does the City pay and how much the Nation.
    The Christchurch earthquake was a National disaster.
    But I never truly saw it acknowledged as a whole of New Zealand responsibility
    The Government say they have committed $15 billion, but this is a 50billion job.
    And some how Christchurch is cordoned off,
    Once again it doesn’t add up, and looking for true forward leadership seems a vacant exercise.
    I think we are in big trouble

    Private Insurance homes
    This can only get more expensive. Some areas of New Zealand are higher risk for Earthquakes.
    But in general I think every one in the Country is going to pay the price in a general way..
    But we have a big gap, Insurance Companies will not insure property they have marked as risky.

    David Cunliffe is full of bullshit slogans, but we do need to work out a future for Earthquake management

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  73. Reid (16,634 comments) says:

    Why the hell is the govt offering the truck driver 90 mins with our royalty?

    Wasn’t it interesting they turned it down.

    Shows a lot of arrogance doesn’t it, to be offered that much time and demand even more.

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  74. thedavincimode (6,877 comments) says:

    Lolita

    The premia would all go offshore in re-insurance anyway. It’s just bullshit.

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  75. wiseowl (936 comments) says:

    I wonder if you can play ‘Royals’ on a ukulele?

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  76. MT_Tinman (3,261 comments) says:

    flipper (3,169 comments) says:
    March 4th, 2014 at 10:49 am
    Tinman….
    Different game… different rules. Still….
    But surely things will be better when Jesse returns for Hesson’s bad boy corner.

    Flipper, same game, same rules – read it again.

    As for Ryder returning, he was successful at real cricket when he was drinking and misbehaving. His record since NZC intervention in this is decidedly average.

    I’ll be happy if he’s never heard of again (in real cricket).

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  77. Pete George (23,687 comments) says:

    You can play anything you like on the ukulele, I’m sure Stairway to Heaven has been done. There’s plenty of links for ukulele versions of Royals on Youtube.

    Here are the chords: http://tabs.ultimate-guitar.com/l/lorde/royals_ukulele_crd.htm
    Just two chords, F and A#.

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  78. MT_Tinman (3,261 comments) says:

    thedavincimode (5,989 comments) says:
    March 4th, 2014 at 11:54 am
    Meanwhile, down in Dunedin, music critic P George wonders whether he did his own songs better. Pfft.

    The fault is entirely yours for not scrolling past the comment immediately you saw it’s author.

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  79. edhunter (552 comments) says:

    It’s all very easy sitting here on the arse end of world talking about war & not letting the ruskkies get away with it. But the reality and horror of war is one to which New Zealanders haven’t been exposed to since the end of WW2.
    In that time across all theatres of war from Korea to Afghanistan we’ve had fewer than 170 casualties, in comparison the skirmish in which former All Black captain Dave Gallagher lost his live cost the lives of 350 New Zealanders.
    A fight with Russia has the potential to have a high casualty count to both sides. I’m all for pulling our weight on the international scene but am finding it pretty hard to think of a scenario or cause to which I’d be willing to let my 21yr old go off and fight in & this one as it currently stands is definitely not one of them.
    So before all you warmongers out there start rattling your sabres would you willingly send your sons & daughters to fight this battle?

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  80. Rowan (2,541 comments) says:

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/business/the-rebuild/9768556/Heritage-building-will-not-be-demolished

    I think the heritage zealots and the NZHPT should butt out here, this building is severly damaged and the owner should be allowed to decide to repair/demolish it, without the input of the various do-gooders hindering the process.

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  81. iMP (2,422 comments) says:

    Oh gee, I see Murray McCully is now adamantly going to stand in East Coast Bays. This election year is getting more fun by the minute.

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  82. Judith (8,534 comments) says:

    @ Ed Snack (1,391 comments) says:
    March 4th, 2014 at 9:32 am

    Thank you for that link Ed. Very interesting. I didn’t know he had that opinion, I must read some more about him, other than just his published works.

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  83. Gulag1917 (1,026 comments) says:

    The American Right Asks the Left for a Divorce
    January 18, 2011 by Dan Mitchell
    Here’s another amusing email that landed in my inbox. Sort of the same theme as our joke about Canada.
    http://danieljmitchell.wordpress.com/2011/01/18/the-american-right-asks-the-left-for-a-divorce/

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  84. Pete George (23,687 comments) says:

    A classic Cactus Kate quip:

    Jessica Williams ‏@mizjwilliams
    Oh dear — Labour ICT policy document mistakenly sent to @amyadamsMP’s office by @clarecurranmp. Red faces.

    @CactusKate2
    @mizjwilliams @amyadamsMP @clarecurranmp does it still have Kim Dot Com’s notes on it?

    Very funny.

    Also:
    @felixmarwick
    Labour accidentally emailed some of its ICT ideas to the Gov’t this morning – now releasing the document publicly (b4 the minister does it)

    @dpfdpf
    Well Labour have said they favour open data and open Government :-)

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  85. stephieboy (3,414 comments) says:

    Let me confidently assert that if that bogus grass roots movement the Tea Party ever got their hands on the reigns of powers in DC, then it would be a case of having to do what JFK suggested to the American people which was to build fallout shelters.
    Fortunately more saner hands are in control with the Ukrainian crises and not full steam through the swamp as with our nutty armchair strategists, both here and on Fox News etc are advocating.

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  86. stephieboy (3,414 comments) says:

    Reid,

    “Observe what happened in Libya and draw your own conclusions.”

    Re the Colonel and his ” cockroaches ??”

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  87. kowtow (8,784 comments) says:

    Great piece by Peter Hitchens on this Crimea business.

    http://hitchensblog.mailonsunday.co.uk/?ico=columnists^editors_choice

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  88. UglyTruth (4,552 comments) says:

    The question that should be being asked is what sort of roaring mental in the US command structure would consider doing that, in the Russian’s own backyard? What pray tell is their calculation?

    A simple matter of maintaining appearances IMO. US economic power was largely dependant upon the petrodollar, and the enforcement of the policy of of using US currency for international oil and gas sales was dependent upon being able to put boots on the ground. With US military influence on the wane, other means of projecting power has become more important, political rhetoric not being the least of these.

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  89. corrigenda (142 comments) says:

    Personally I think Wills and Kate have had a lucky escape!!!

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  90. stephieboy (3,414 comments) says:

    Peter Hitchens seems to be an unabashed apologist for Putin Russophile and I see he predictably roots for the Serbians at Kosovo ignoring the brutal treatment and massacre of the Bosnian Muslims.He even describes Poland as a vassal state of the EU.
    Hmmm…
    But people ,including Hitchen’s do need to seriously consider the kind of man the ex KGB Lt Colonel is,

    https://cpj.org/killed/europe/russia/

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  91. Rowan (2,541 comments) says:

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/opinion/perspective/9781805/Spare-Cathedral-from-total-demolition

    I would have to disagree with Richard Terry on this. Sadly the cathedral is totally munted, yes it is a great loss but is not ‘irreplaceable’ and is of no use to anyone as it is. Sadly the do-gooders led by Jim Anderton think that the decision is up to them and that they should get to make the decisions on its future. Reality check the building belongs to the church and how many more appeals and court decisions are needed before some people learn that. Hopefully the next court will award costs against Anderton and tell him to butt out.
    http://fairfaxmedia.newspaperdirect.com/epaper/viewer.aspx

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  92. emmess (1,433 comments) says:

    I can even more happily say ‘I have never bought an Apple product and never will’

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/technology/news/article.cfm?c_id=5&objectid=11213251

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  93. Pete George (23,687 comments) says:

    But wait, there’s more. If you get one cockup you get another one completely free!

    Having emailed a document in error to Amy Adams Clare Curran decided to pre-empt a leak and provide the document to media.

    @mizjwilliams 1m

    OK, update to the Labour update. @clarecurranmp e-mailed one document to IT writers; printed out the wrong one and brought it to gallery

    Labour are having a Cunliffe of a day.

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  94. Manolo (14,082 comments) says:

    The Muppets wouldn’t do it better: http://news.msn.co.nz/nationalnews/8808998/labour-document-ends-up-in-wrong-hands

    Labour has confessed it mistakenly sent its draft ICT policy to the worst possible person – Communications Minister Amy Adams.

    MP Clare Curran wrote the 20-point document and told media what had happened before the government said anything.

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  95. Manolo (14,082 comments) says:

    Lynn Prentice and the Rainbow Branch of the Labour Party would be proud: http://theweek.com/article/index/257285/speedreads-gay-and-lesbian-troops-perform-in-drag-on-american-military-base

    Troops based at the Kadena Air Base in Japan know how to party. On Saturday, six gay and straight service members applied some of their finest makeup and lip synced to “I Wanna Dance with Somebody” in what is believed to be first drag queen and king show on an American military base.

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  96. edhunter (552 comments) says:

    Oh Bollocks Manolo
    http://www.bookwormroom.com/2014/03/02/drag-shows-and-the-american-military/

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  97. DJP6-25 (1,389 comments) says:

    Gulag1917 1.33 pm. I wonder if a ‘velvet divorce’ between the red and blue states would be viable?

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  98. Lucia Maria (2,609 comments) says:

    Kowtow,

    Peter Hitchens’ Communist sympathies are out in full force in that article that you’ve linked to. I normally enjoy a number of his points of view, and even have a book of his (The Rage Against God: How Atheism Led Me to Faith, in which he talks a bit about the time he spent in Russia). However, he is seriously blind when it comes to Russia.

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  99. Lucia Maria (2,609 comments) says:

    Reid,

    Observe what happened in Libya and draw your own conclusions.

    Nope, not connected. The Ukrainians are crazy enough to do all of this on their own.

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  100. stigie (1,325 comments) says:

    I wonder if you can play ‘Royals’ on a ukulele?

    Have a go and play it Wiseowl, and LRC will smash it over your head !

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  101. mandk (1,020 comments) says:

    If you are ever feeling a bit down, take my advice and have a look at The Standard.

    It’s positively hilarious reading all the garbage written by desperate and delusional socialists! Who needs Prozac when you can get a no-cost, drug-free pick-me-up?

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  102. wreck1080 (3,972 comments) says:

    “Tony Douglas Robertson, now 26, was released from jail in December after an eight-year sentence for kidnapping and molesting a 5-year-old Tauranga girl in December 2005. The girl was found with Robertson in his car at Kaiate Falls in Welcome Bay 45 minutes after she had been abducted.”

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/bay-of-plenty-times/news/article.cfm?c_id=1503343&objectid=11213785

    I remember this story — the girl is lucky to be alive. A cop using intuition alone decided to check this remote spot and thankfully rescued this girl from possible death although sadly she was still subjected to a sexual assault.

    How this guy wasn’t sentenced to preventative detention is beyond me. .. but the authorities have decided to release this young sex offender who likes fiddling with little girls back into my community.

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  103. SPC (5,787 comments) says:

    Thanks to Andrei and Reid we all know what would have been said on blogs when German troops occupied parts of Czechoslovakia.

    How Czechoslovakia was an invention of the UK/USA to democratise and partition the Christian empire of Austria and how mighty Germany (annexed Austria) was within its right to protects Germans wherever they lived.

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  104. thedavincimode (6,877 comments) says:

    Tinman

    What can I say? :oops:

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  105. Duxton (657 comments) says:

    Another knife goes into Cunliffe…….

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11213873

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  106. Manolo (14,082 comments) says:

    The lazy truck driver realises he fucked it up:
    http://news.msn.co.nz/nationalnews/8808788/maori-king-rejects-royal-visit

    Maori King Tuheitia has issued a scathing statement criticising organisers of next month’s royal visit, saying faceless bureaucrats are undermining his position. It follows Prime Minister John Key saying King Tuheitia had turned down a visit from Prince William because the 90-minute time slot offered was too short.

    On Tuesday, King Tuheitia’s office issued a statement confirming the royals would not meet, despite Prince William and his wife visiting the Waikato as it would have meant just seven minutes mingling with the people on the Turangawaewae Marae at Ngaruawahia.

    However, the statement was especially critical of the government-appointed committee overseeing the visit, which it said was not willing to be negotiable or flexible in its approaches to the king.

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  107. SPC (5,787 comments) says:

    Some will claim that the person in the White House determines what others do around the world. That is rarely the case, it is just the politicising of foreign policy.

    The Korean case is an exception – Acheson not listing South Korea as an area that the USA would protect … but that was war by oversight (and Vietnam would probably not have occurred without Korea first) not by position of the party/incumbent in office.

    Cuba was not a result of Russians seeing Kennedy as weak but as the Bay of Pigs (his own establishment seeing him as weaker than Eisenhower and unable to constrain them) as demonstrating that they were seen as weak. The result was agreement not to have missiles on each others borders (restored mutual respect) – and this came to a conclusion when missiles were later taken out of Europe (after the Americans responded to their placement in Eastern Europe close to their NATO partners).

    Decisions made are precedents.

    Use of force to liberate Kuwait led to the later removal of a dictatorship from Iraq. And backing opposition to Russia in Afghanistan resulted in Taleban rule.

    Courses taken have consequences.

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  108. big bruv (14,165 comments) says:

    Did anybody else watch Question time today?

    I got the impression that Winston was pissed, he raised a couple of points of order during question one and it was near impossible to understand what he was saying.

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  109. Steve (North Shore) (4,591 comments) says:

    Wills and Kate have no interest in a lecture about the Moari Kingdom and it’s marketing of Koha and Taniwha.
    But they probably wouldn’t mind cooking some pipis on corogated iron over a fire at the beach bro

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  110. Pete George (23,687 comments) says:

    KiwiClare:

    Ms Curran’s document outlined plans for policies called KiwiMap, KiwiCode, KiwiCall, KiwiCap, KiwiCloud and Kiwis Come Home.

    Kiwicringe.

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  111. nasska (11,813 comments) says:

    Bob received a text from his neighbour…..”I am so sorry Bob.” it read. “I’ve been riddled with guilt and I have to confess. I have been tapping your wife, day and night when you’re not around. In fact, more than you. I’m not getting any at home, but that’s no excuse. I can no longer live with the guilt and I hope you will accept my sincerest apology with my promise that it won’t happen again”.

    Bob, anguished and betrayed, went into his bedroom, grabbed his gun and without a word shot his wife killing her instantly. A few moments later, a second text came in….”Damn autocorrect. I meant “wifi”, not “wife”. “

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  112. PhilP (163 comments) says:

    I read a piece in Monday’s Wairarapa Times-Age where Trevor Mallard, Grant Robertson and Chris Hipkins were in Masterton last weekend with their Wairarapa Labour candidate Keiran McAnulty. Apparently they were out door knocking.
    The long serving trougher Mallard Duck made the observation that not enough people were enrolled to vote in Wairarapa and how disappointed he was with this fact. He went on to say that the Electoral Commission has a lot of work to do here to get enrolments up. I looked up statistics on the elections.org website for Wairarapa and find that the Wairarapa electorate as at 28 Feb is 97.27% enrolled. Trougher Mallard’s Hutt South electorate is 91.47% enrolled. May be he should sort out his own back yard first before making disparaging comments about another electorate………..F***en rant over.

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  113. Pete George (23,687 comments) says:

    PhilP – interesting, three Labour MPs in Masterton in the weekend. Story breaks in the Herald on Sunday about Mojo Mather’s trip to Masterton. Wairarapa Times-Age linked to NZ Herald.

    No source of story has been revealed. Yet.

    But that story isn’t on their website. Can you scan it?

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  114. Fletch (6,497 comments) says:

    Brendan O’Neill’s opinion that this mess in the Ukraine was caused by the West, not Russia.

    1) Unlike in 1989, the man deposed by crowds of protesters in Ukraine – Viktor Yanukovich – was not a dictator or party secretary imposed on Ukraine by Moscow. Rather, he was elected, freely and fairly, in 2010, by 12,481,266 people, 48.95% of those who voted. So we have a situation where the West is cheering the ousting of a democratically elected leader while Russia is expressing concern about it. Awkward.

    2) Unlike in 1989, the protesters in Ukraine are not all nice, democratic, Western-leaning individuals who read Der Spiegel and listen to Lou Reed. The camps in Kiev also had a healthy (or rather unhealthy) smattering of far-right activists and even anti-Semites. And now, the far-right party Svoboda, which thinks Ukraine is threatened by a ‘Moscow-Jewish mafia’, controls three ministries in the new interim government. So we have a situation where Westerners are cheering as democratic and liberal a government that has anti-Semites in it. Again, awkward.

    3) Far from storming into Ukraine to prop up Yanukovich, Moscow actually kept its distance while conflict brewed there over the past three months. It was only with the effective fall of the Yanukovich government, and its replacement by an EU-selected, Washington-approved new government, that Russia sent troops to its borders with Ukraine and Crimea. Which is kind of understandable given that Russia shares a very long, porous border with Ukraine and Ukraine is currently a bit of an unstable mess. Russia is less trying to expand its empire than it is seeking to fortify its borders and its interests against instability in Ukraine and pressure from Brussels and Washington.

    The truth is that it is not Russia that has behaved recklessly in Ukraine – it is the West. It was Western politicians who stirred up the tensions in Ukraine over the past three months, by actually visiting the protest camps in Kiev and telling their inhabitants that theirs was a ‘just cause’. It was also Western politicians who had high-level talks with oppositional leaders in Ukraine, advising them on how and when to form a new interim government to replace Yanukovich’s. Such meddling had a far graver impact than anything Russia did at the end of 2013 or start of 2014, since it further isolated Yanukovich, emboldened the protesters, and made violent conflict all but inevitable. It was the infantile, nostalgic meddling of Western governments in Ukraine, their use of Kiev as a stage on which to have a fancy-dress re-enactment of the Cold War years, which propelled that country towards ruin.

    MORE – http://www.spiked-online.com/newsite/article/it-is-the-west-not-russia-that-has-behaved-recklessly-in-ukraine/14736

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  115. PhilP (163 comments) says:

    @Pete George
    PhilP – interesting, three Labour MPs in Masterton in the weekend. Story breaks in the Herald on Sunday about Mojo Mather’s trip to Masterton. Wairarapa Times-Age linked to NZ Herald.

    It was Golden Shears weekend after all….may be they were in Masterton on Sunday but I suspect they were here troughing all weekend.

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  116. PhilP (163 comments) says:

    @ Pete George

    Surprised it’s not on their website. Can’t scan it sorry ole chap. May be the library down there still get papers sent to them?

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  117. Graeme2 (103 comments) says:

    Interesting take on Crimea
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/brian-glyn-williams/adventures-in-the-crimean_b_4887271.html

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  118. Pete George (23,687 comments) says:

    It’s ok Phil, I’ve found some other very interesting evidence, including proof Mallard and Hipkins were campaigning in Masterton on the Saturday.

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  119. Pete George (23,687 comments) says:

    The Mojo story and a Masterton coincidence

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  120. SPC (5,787 comments) says:

    Some once loved the Russian left more than they loved democracy in the West, and some love Christian Russia more than they love secular democracy.

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  121. SPC (5,787 comments) says:

    Graeme2, and if Russia is in Crimea to protect the Russians there, who is there to protect the Ukrainians and Tartars of Crimea?

    And who will protect the rights of Ukrainians in eastern Ukraine – in some areas they are in the majority with a minority of Russians and in others they are the minority with a majority of Russians – if Russia occupies all these areas …. .

    A majority of those of the Ukraine want to be part of the EU, a majority of Crimea would transfer to Russia, the majority in eastern Ukraine varies from area to area.

    Plebiscites would be the peaceful way, but will those with force on the ground allow results they do not want? Thus poll an area with a Russian minority within an area with a Russian majority to extend Russian claims deeper into Ukraine – and enable this by encouraging expulsions of local Ukrainians by local Russian agents?

    The Crimean Tartars could well be supported by Turkey and ally to Caucasus groups – Putin’s actions will have consequences.

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  122. Reid (16,634 comments) says:

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2014-03-02/meanwhile-china-quietly-takes-over-zimbabwe

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  123. RRM (10,034 comments) says:

    Pete George – nice write up chap.

    Judith Collins is shilling her husband’s products in CHINA at our expense, meanwhile Mojo Mathers goes to Masterton and somehow that’s a flagrant waste of taxpayers’ money.

    This is why I didn’t immediately join the Taxpayers Union, I wondered whether it would actually stay true to its stated objectives, or would it just be a partisan National Party lap dog.

    I guess I have my answer now, and it’s a pretty fucking disappointing one.

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