Political maturity in New Zealand – at least compared to the US

A moment of clarity in the NZ election negotiations. Credit: NZ Herald.

Maybe it is the social media silo effect but I think a lot of New Zealanders feel proud about the way our recent elections went.

Once again we are a world leader. A new impressive young female Prime Minister. An atmosphere of cooperation – or at least respect all around from (and towards) the winners and losers. And a feeling that our new Prime Minister may have the unifying skills necessary for the job at this time.

But what has impressed me is the beginning of some clarity about the nature and causes of our problems. We are talking about housing and child poverty as indicators of a failed economy and not low inflation, the balance of payments, etc., as indicators of a “successful economy.” No matter how good the “accepted” economic indicators appear to be an economy is not successful if it fails to protect its children and has the degree of homelessness we are seeing.

Winston Peters’ honesty about the causes of our problems being inherent in an economic system oriented towards the interests of dead money and not towards people is refreshing. It’s a long time since we have heard such economic honesty from a politician in our parliament. Also refreshing is the fact that our media (not known for admitting such basic problems) has repeated his statement.

And isn’t it heartening to have a Prime Minister flagging an interest in ministerial jobs aimed at helping children rather than something like finance?

Maturity

Like many, I am cynical of the concept of “capitalism with a human face” but New Zealand at the moment should be seen as a glowing example of how democracy should work. Yet we have the US promoting itself as exceptional, a leader of the free world” and the best example of “democracy.” A self-belief so strong it wishes to impose their example on “less fortunate” countries. And, too often, even New Zealander commentators and journalists get captured by such silliness.

But come on!

Just imagine if Bill English threw his toys out of the cot because his “natural” assumption of power has been denied by the electoral system. Just imagine if he attempted to “explain” his failure by promoting the fiction that the “Russians did it,” or blamed President Putin for his problems. Just imagine if all sorts of attempts were now being made to produce “evidence” of collusion between our new leaders and those horrible Russians. I am sure we could, if we were that childish, find examples of meetings with diplomats, maybe even professional or financial links with someone indirectly connected to a firm which may exist in St Petersburg.

And what about all those pro-Labour and pro-Green”trolls” on social media? Hell, they were all over Facebook and Twitter! Surely that is evidence of manipulation by Russian “troll farms.” And what about the “fact” that the pro-Russian media heavily promoted Jacinda Adern and is glorying in her victory?

OK, perhaps not even Hillary Clinton would accuse the NZ Herald of being “pro-Russian” – but here is the “undeniable evidence” – this story run by Sputnik which, for this purpose, we could describe as being a propaganda arm of the Kremlin!

Oh dear. The “evidence is mounting up.” It’s becoming “undeniable!”

I am glad we live in a country with more political maturity but isn’t it sad that the most powerful (militarily) country in the world is so politically immature. And, also sad when even commentators in New Zealand buy into that immaturity.

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60 responses to “Political maturity in New Zealand – at least compared to the US

  1. Labour sold out to the corrupt NZ First.

    The PM hasn’t been sworn in yet and the Kermadecs are off the table.

    There is nothing to be proud of here. NZ will be the laughing stock of the world in 12 months

    Like

  2. Ah, I must have breached my silo. I had wondered where all the antis and killjoys were hiding.

    Like

  3. Of course Socialists will love this election result because it gives them yet another opportunity to destroy the economy and country, just as it has everywhere it has been tried. In Venezuela they eat zoo animals. We won’t have to go that far in NZ as we have plenty of wild animals and plenty of guns to kill them with.,

    Like

  4. Andy, I see you have decided to launch into the competition with Hillary Clinton for the most hilarious explanation for defeat. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Hillary Clinton lost an actual election that was decided by the rules of the electoral college, and subsequently blamed everyone but herself.
    NZ’s government was decided by Winston Peters who has already sold out to his mates in the fishing lobby

    Like

  6. Great piece Ken. I haven’t agreed with you much over the years but on this you completely nailed it. The RW trolls are losing their minds and spreading more FUD than ever in a panic. Irrational behaviour

    Like

  7. Election had a good outcome. We need change. The legacy of John Key is 1/100 people homeless in NZ, skyrocketing housing prices that are out of reach of New Zealanders, inflated currency that hurts export, record child poverty with children being fed and clothed at schools by charities. Sure National has been great for those who think of themselves and have little concern for the welfare of others. But overall the successive National Governments have eroded NZ into a third-world poverty ridden nation. Time we gave the controls to people that care.

    Like

  8. I met Mr Peters some years ago in Dunedin at the late lamented Robbie Burns pub. I was with some Scottish friends who were down for the All Blacks test match. We had made a tee shirt for the tour and offered one to Mr Peters. He was very keen, and told us “I’ll pay you later”

    At that point the transaction ceased.

    Remarkably, the NZ left have not learned any lessons and climbed about the NZ First train

    I don’t think this is going to end well.

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  9. However it ends, Andy, it has certainly started well.

    Like

  10. Started well?

    How exactly? Nothing has actually happened yet, other than the dollar taking a dive (good for me btw)

    Like

  11. There you go, Andy. You think that an economy should be judged by indicators like the value of the dollar – not the homelessness or child poverty. You seriously think any attempt to improve the quality of human life instead of dead money will lead to us killing animals in Auckland Zoo for food!

    Like

  12. I pointed out that the short term blip in the dollar benefited me as a side note, and you deduce that I am only focussed on money and think we will be eating zoo animals soon. Bizarre.

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  13. Andy, you are the one raising issues of eating zoo animals and economic disaster as a result of the support the NZ voters have given for a new government.

    You certainly do not seem to be interested in child poverty or homelessness which are real scourges. Only the interests of dead money.

    Like

  14. I raised the example of Venezuela which is a basketcase socialist economy where people have been forced into eating whatever they can lay their hands on. Some people in NZ still seem to think that this is a viable way to run a country. I guess they might be inspired by the images of government officials beating up members of the public with baseball bats

    To suggest I don’t care about child poverty is a bit rich since it hasn’t been raised in discussion

    Furthermore, to suggest that the NZ public elected this government is a bit rich. Mt Baubles could have gone with National and the result would be completely different.

    The public didn’t elect the government. Mr Baubles did.

    Like

  15. Andy, the election result IS what most of NZ wanted. National did not get a majority. Labour did not get a majority. To compare majority rules with MMP is nonsense. The fact is that most New Zealanders did not vote for any one party but did vote for coalition. In that vote, it was clear that the parties that propped up National in past elections were retaliated against. The Maori Party as an example. There was enough suggestion in the result that NZ wanted a change. Although I am not a fan of Winston, I am glad he went Labour as National has been socially inept and run politics to line their own pockets. Personally I’m willing to give this coalition a chance to prove itself.

    Like

  16. Winston goes with Labour = NZ voted for Labour

    Winston goes with National = NZ voted for National

    Therefore, since either outcome was possible under MMP rules, NZ voted for National, and NZ voted for Labour.

    The wildcard was played by Winston

    We all voted for National and we all voted for Labour. It makes perfect sense

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  17. “The fact is that most New Zealanders did not vote for any one party but did vote for coalition”

    Really? So when I make a party vote for one party, I am not voting for one party?

    Like

  18. It is like the Schroedinger Cat of elections. The cat is dead. The cat is alive. Only Winston knows the answer

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  19. Exactly. It is MMP not First-Past-The-Post. Voting for a party is voting for that party to be a member of a coalition under MMP. New Zealanders as a whole (not individually) voted for coalition. It could have been a different outcome from this election if other parties could see a way forward. National and the Greens could have come together and formed a government. It is possible if they get over themselves first. But all the parties had chosen to let Winston rule. Winston was not the Kingmaker by choice. He was given it by consent of all parties.

    Personally I had thought NZF would have gone National. I was pleasantly surprised that he chose the path of change 🙂

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  20. The problem is that no one knew which way NZF would go. so the whole process was a lottery

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  21. It’s not specifically a matter of “which way NZF would go” – that simply demonstrates FPP thinking. In principle, people support parties because of their policies – and in negotiations for a new government, the parties negotiate for their policies. Presumably, NZ First voters are happy whichever way the party goers – if it gives that party a chance with their policies.

    And, of course, that influence is according to their electoral support – whichever way it goes.

    Like

  22. How did NZ First’s policies go? For a start, they immediately dropped the binding referendum on Maori seats

    This was supposed to be a non-negotiable bottom line

    NZF and Peters make it up as they go along. As a party, I hope this finishes them off next election.

    Peters even lost his own electoral seat and gets to decide as a consolation prize who the government is

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  23. Andy, I see you have decided to launch into the competition with Hillary Clinton for the most hilarious explanation for defeat.

    It is Hilarious, with a capital H.

    RWNJs were as smug as cats with cream on election night, only too pleased to enter into negotiations with NZF.

    Except that they didn’t understand how MMP works and have now been shown reality (as well as the door).

    Their reactions are hilarious, no other word for it, except maybe pathetic.

    Great result for NZ.

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  24. Of course it is a great result for NZ. A talentless 37 year old sold out to a racist bigot who lost his own electoral seat and formed a “government” that has based its policy platforms on mathematically impossible outcomes.

    The great news is that these losers will likely be out of jobs in 2020.
    Unfortunately, so will a large part of NZ.

    Like

  25. You are coming across as a sore loser, Andy. Emotion does get in the way of proper judgment. 🙂

    Like

  26. David Fierstien

    From your blog post: “And what about all those pro-Labour and pro-Green”trolls” on social media? Hell, they were all over Facebook and Twitter! Surely that is evidence of manipulation by Russian “troll farms.”

    I get the sarcasm. But what rational reason can you give me to explain why Mark Zuckerberg would lie about his own corporation being used by foreign interests in an attempt to drive social division prior to the 2016 U.S. election?

    If anything, such an admission would have damaged his capital.

    Like

  27. It’s funny that not just the WSJ but also USA Today is comparing Ardern to Trump.

    I think this is a bit unreasonable. Trump wants to limit illegal immigration. Our government wants to limit legal immigration.

    Not that I have a problem with controlling borders, but we do need people to building the 10s of thousands of houses that the incoming government is promising, not to mention the billions of dollars of rail projects on offer.

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  28. Think about it, David. In the current atmosphere of political pressure, neo-McCarthyism and anti-Russian racism in the US it is extremely easy to pressure anyone to make vague statements which are then used as “evidence” and then “facts.” And desperately straw-clutched by the politically immature.

    Zuckerberg’s story has changed over time – it’s not at all surprising.

    But the idea that social media trolls of whatever flavour had any more influence in the US than in NZ is laughable. Its a sign of desperation – that had a deeper ulterior motive. the attempt to sideline, even make illegal, alternative media in the US and Europe.

    My “sarcasm:” was actually serious. In NZ our political attitudes seem to be infinitely more mature than in the US at the moment. Mind you, in the past, we have had government inspired dancing cossacks in election adverts so I think we are capable of sinking to the US level,

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  29. I found this old “article” from Vice that has some pearls from our new Minister of Foreign Affairs:

    Since 2005 he’s described Asian immigration as “imported criminal activity”, and dubbed New Zealand the “last Asian colony”. Then there was his announcement framing himself as a lone knight against “Asian dog farmers”. He’s claimed that refugees come “carrying HIV and all sorts of third-world diseases.” Of the Islamic community, he says “the moderate and militant, fit hand and glove. Underneath it all the agenda is to promote fundamentalist Islam—indeed these groups are like the mythical Hydra, a serpent underbelly with multiple heads, capable of striking at any time and in any direction.”
    In 2014 he refused to apologise for his comment that “two wongs don’t make a white”. This year, he’s attacked the ethnicity of two top NZ Herald data journalists, saying they were spreading misinformation, “seek[ing] to justify their existence and that of mass immigration, coming mainly from Asia”; and argued that the difference between New Zealanders and Filipinos is the latter don’t know how to change a tyre or fix a fence.

    https://www.vice.com/en_nz/article/paaqb9/for-the-record-which-nz-politicians-are-racists

    As you say, hilarious.

    Like

  30. Ken says:

    You are coming across as a sore loser, Andy

    I am not a loser, sore or otherwise. As I have already pointed out, the drop in dollar has financially benefited me. I can’t say the same for the rest of the country though. Sad.

    Like

  31. David Fierstien

    Ken, let’s recap so there is no confusion.

    I asked you, ” . . what rational reason can you give me to explain why Mark Zuckerberg would lie about his own corporation being used by foreign interests in an attempt to drive social division prior to the 2016 U.S. election?”

    Your answer was, “In the current atmosphere of political pressure, neo-McCarthyism and anti-Russian racism in the US it is extremely easy to pressure anyone to make vague statements which are then used as “evidence” and then “facts.””

    You are telling me that Mark Zuckerberg, a 33 year old man who is worth $71.1 Billion U.S.D., was “pressured” into making an admission that could have potentially cost him and his corporation money and other capital? Am I reading you correctly?

    That’s quite a theory! I will be sure to give it all the consideration it is due.

    Like

  32. David Fierstien

    In considering your theoretical scenario — A 33 year old Billionaire (Mark Zuckerberg) pressured by a McCarthyistic government into admitting that his company was somehow involved, complicit, or negligent, in regards to the exploitation of its governments assets or institutions, a striking parallel comes to mind.

    Howard Hughes, an aging millionaire with severe mental issues, was investigated by The Truman Committee in 1947 for war profiteering.

    An aging Howard Hughes, with mental issues, told Senator Owen Brewester, Chairman of that Committee, to go screw himself.

    And now, you’re telling me that an incredibly sharp and lucid 33 year old man worth $71.1 Billion, caved into the peer-group pressure of a government that could in no way have harmed him . . by making an admission that could have led to the potential detriment to his own capital? . . Really?

    My next question: Are you for real?

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  33. David, you come across as willingly naive – but of course, you are a supporter of the current neo-McCarthyist campaign in the US and its subsequent hysteria so your comment reeks more to me of confirmation bias than naivety.

    Have a look at this video summary of the current ongoing attempts against alternative media – in this case banning advertising by RT channels and Sputnick on Twitter. Look at how the attitude of the Twitter business people has changed since offering RT a very attractive deal (except for the price – RT declined because it was too expensive) last year to aim RT advertising at the US election activity on Twitter.

    Neo-McCarthyism is a form of terrorism so of course people and organisations under this sort of pressure will very often change their stories.

    Like

  34. It’s funny that we now know – this week – that the DNC and Clinton colluded with the Russians to undermine the Trump campaign, and suddenly collusion is all OK. Just hilarious.

    Not even on the radar for the NZ media though. Too busy swooning over our Glorious Leader I guess

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  35. David Fierstien

    Ken, your quote: ” . . your comment reeks more to me of confirmation bias than naivety.”

    Response: I haven’t made a comment. I have asked you a question, repeated that question, and then I have summarized the answer you provided to that question.

    Nevertheless, your video is not an answer to that original question. Why would Mark Zuckerberg willingly lie about Russian trolls purposely attempting to create social division in the U.S. prior to the 2016 election.

    Your video answers the question. He didn’t lie. From your own video @ timestamp – 14:29 RT tries to distinguish itself from those Russian hackers.
    “There’s been this hysteria over Russian trolls, Russian bots, Russian hackers . . . Somehow, RT has been put on par with these trolls, bots, and hackers.”

    The RT video acknowledges the existence of them, and tries to separate itself from what everyone in the world, except you, has accepted as fact.

    To quote you, “Your comment reeks more to me of confirmation bias than naivety.”

    Like

  36. the DNC and Clinton colluded with the Russians to undermine the Trump campaign, and suddenly collusion is all OK.

    Well, that’s how Breitbart spin it.

    Like

  37. David Fierstien

    Interesting sidenote: I’ve been watching Ken Burns’ documentary, “The Vietnam War.” One of the most startling things I learned (aside from how the U.S. became involved in that war) was that during the 1968 presidential campaign, Richard Nixon colluded with a foreign government to help himself get elected. President Johnson knew about it, but he felt this information coming to light would have shocked the U.S. public.

    In a taped telephone conversation, Johnson called it “treason.” In another taped conversation, he asked Nixon about it directly. And of course Nixon denied it.

    The situation was that Democratic nominee, Hubert Humphrey, was behind in the polls, until he announced that he would put an end to the bombing of North Vietnam. Discussions were taking place in Paris, the Paris Peace Talks. Nixon received assistance from President Thieu, who announced three days before the election, that he would not take part in the Paris Peace Talks. This sank Humphrey in the polls, who of course lost the election.

    It makes me wonder if Trump knew about this (he’s not exactly a student of history). But I can imagine his thinking if he did.

    Trump: “Hmmm . . Nixon got away with it . . . and I’m smarter than Nixon . . . “

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  38. David Fierstien

    Ahh . . I found many references to that indecent. All current, since the knowledge is now public. If anyone is interested in the details: https://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/31/opinion/sunday/nixons-vietnam-treachery.html

    Like

  39. Don’t be silly, David, Of course you made a comment in this comment section.

    But, typically you attempt to ignore the evidence I put in front of you.

    Have a read of the RT article in which they reveal the full content of the advertising proposal Twitter made to RT last year – Twitter’s multi-million dollar US election pitch to RT revealed in FULL. A proposal in which RT and Twitter were presented as working together to provide objective coverage of the US elections.

    twitter

    Then look at the letter announcing they were to ban all advertising from RT companies:

    twitter 2

    As this points out their decision was based entirely on the evidence-free US “intelligence” report from January. That report did not indicate any misbehaviour by RT – it simply indicated that RT was doing an honest job, more effectively than US channels (for example it did interview the third party candidates). There was absolutely no indication of wrongdoing.

    Now tell me that Twitter has not had its metaphorical arm twisted in exactly the same way Zuckerberg has in changing the emphasis in his opinion. (It is an opinion for a public situation made under pressure – completely evidence-free.).

    It’s amazing what a threat of interrogation by a congressional un-American Activities Committee can do. And that was the whole purpose of McCarthyism, Very similar to Stalinism in this respect.

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  40. David, you really shouldn’t sink this low. You say:

    ““There’s been this hysteria over Russian trolls, Russian bots, Russian hackers . . . Somehow, RT has been put on par with these trolls, bots, and hackers.”

    The RT video acknowledges the existence of them, and tries to separate itself from what everyone in the world, except you, has accepted as fact.”

    Come off it. A reference to trolls, bots and hackers is in no way a confirmation of the evidence-free diversionary claims of the Clintonites. And it is simply silly to say “everyone in the world,” thinks this. The more intelligent of us can actually see the Emporer has no clothes – the claims are not supported by a single piece of evidence. And that is exactly why you need to resort to such transparent straw-clutching.

    Of course trolls, bots and hackers exist. They certainly exist in the US, UK, China and the Russian Federation. Hell, they even exist in little old NZ.

    We are currently seeing the Russian variety swing into action in the lead-up to the official announcement of the Russian presidential elections. Ksenia Sobchak who has declared her intention to nominate has come under this sort of action, as well as the normal press coverage. It is currently providing some entertainment to Russian TV watchers.

    We will no doubt see much more of this one the official election campaign period is underway and all the candidates are known. This is probably normal for democratic elections anywhere these days and I do not think the Russian Authorities will set up an “un-Russian Investigation Committee” to consider that. External financing and the operation of NGOs is a different matter and may be investigated.

    A separate issue will be the legal actions Russian authorities take against US media and social media companies in a tit-for-tat retaliation against the restrictions being imposed on Russian companies in the US.

    If only the US could be looking at the groups and activities of powerful funders in their elections (rather than the measly sums involved in media advertising), and at the corruption exposed by Wikileaks, then US citizens might have a bit more trust in their setup. At the moment all they can really do is laugh at it.

    Like

  41. Richard – I really hate the way commenters attempt to discredit a story by referring to its source – as if that matters. Surely a story should be judged on the evidence, not the source.

    I don’t know how Brietbart “spun” the story – but there is a story which is probably worth considering. For example, these stories are also being reported elsewhere – eg. The Washington Post Clinton campaign, DNC paid for research that led to Russia dossier and The Daily Caller EXCLUSIVE: Dem Super-Lobbyist Podesta Got $170K to End US Sanctions On Russian Bank.

    Frankly, I am pissed off with people who refuse to discuss interesting stories by denigrating the source. This comment I got I my facebook posting of the Twitter abn on RT advertising yesterday is typical of such avoidance and blinker wearing “Still getting your news from Pravda?”. The commenter simply displyed their ignorance – as if I would use Pravda as a source – these days that paper simply acts as a channel for pro-US politicians and creationists. And he was upset I gave him a flea in his ear. 🙂

    Like

  42. David Fierstien

    Interaction between Twitter and RT is irrelevant to this discussion. Twitter is not Facebook, Twitter is not relevant to Mark Zuckerberg, and RT is not an example of a Russian troll farm. But I thank you for your entertaining diversion. Beyond that . . .

    Ken, you say, “Don’t be silly, David, Of course you made a comment in this comment section.”

    Response: You really love to argue a moot point, don’t you. I asked you a question. A question is not a comment. Here it is:

    “” . . what rational reason can you give me to explain why Mark Zuckerberg would lie about his own corporation being used by foreign interests in an attempt to drive social division prior to the 2016 U.S. election?”

    How exactly is my asking you a question a “comment?” . . . After that, how is my re-summarizing your response a “comment?” Are we speaking the same language?

    Then you say, “But, typically you attempt to ignore the evidence I put in front of you.”

    What evidence? Do you mean an RT video in which RT tries to distance itself from from what they call ” Russian trolls, Russian bots, Russian hackers?” What exactly is that evidence of?

    Ahh . . you say, “A reference to trolls, bots and hackers is in no way a confirmation of the evidence-free diversionary claims of the Clintonites.”

    Clintonites? Wow!! The “clintonites” are only a small fraction of those who employ those “diversionary claims” of Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. election. Let’s see . . there is every U.S. intelligence agency (did the Clintons pay them off?) . . . and there is . . . Oh, . . and then there is RT itself. (By the way, could you please provide the most recent quote from any of the Clintons in which they claim Russian hackers influenced an election? Again, the Clintons aren’t saying this. You are. And so is RT. Here’s one from RT from two days ago:)

    The quote from the RT video was, ““There’s been this hysteria over Russian trolls, Russian bots, Russian hackers . . . Somehow, RT has been put on par with these trolls, bots, and hackers.”

    If RT, a professional news service, was disputing the existence of these Russian troll farms, it would have said, ““There’s been this hysteria over THE ALLEGED Russian trolls, Russian bots, Russian hackers . . . Somehow, RT has been put on par with these ALLEGED, OR SUPPOSED trolls, bots, and hackers.”

    But RT didn’t say that, did they. Mainstream media Always uses the word “alleged” when referring to something that has not been proven. Are you admitting that RT is less professional than MSM? Of course not. RT knows full well that these hackers exist. The word “alleged” was not used by RT.

    Did you actually have some kind of rational argument here? Or do you just like to argue?

    Like

  43. David Fierstien

    Earlier in this thread, in reference to Nixon’s collusion with the South Vietnamese government to help him win the election, I imagined what Trump might have thought, had he known about it:

    Trump: “Hmmm . . Nixon got away with it . . . and I’m smarter than Nixon . ”

    Now, in light of the Whitefish scandal in Puerto Rico, I imagine Trump might have pondered:

    “Hmmmm, . . . Cheney got away with it in Iraq with Haliburton . . . and I’m smarter than Cheney . . “

    Like

  44. (Plus you’ll have to factor in the inevitable tweaks Andy applies to most of his talking points.)

    So yeah, that’s the line Breitbart take.

    Like

  45. I think the Washington Post originally reported the FusionGPS – DNC – Russia collusion. But, hey feel free to make up shit about me. I haven’t read anything on Brietbart for weeks.

    Like

  46. Andy, did the WP spin the story in the same manner that you did? Or that Breitbart did?

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  47. David Fierstien

    Ken, sometimes I really can’t tell if you are being serious . . . or if you have a surprising sense of humor. Sometimes I have to take a second look.

    From your comment to Richard: ” I really hate the way commenters attempt to discredit a story by referring to its source – as if that matters. Surely a story should be judged on the evidence, not the source.”

    That comment ended with this from you: “as if I would use Pravda as a source – these days that paper simply acts as a channel for pro-US politicians and creationists.”

    Good one.

    Like

  48. Andy, did the WP spin the story in the same manner that you did? Or that Breitbart did?

    Obviously not, WaPo is a propaganda rag for the lying Clinton scum.

    Like

  49. Here one relevant to the blog post (rather than Russian trolls)
    “New Zealand’s New PM is Clueless about Capitalism”

    https://fee.org/articles/new-zealand-s-new-pm-is-clueless-about-capitalism/

    Like

  50. Odd (..not) that that entire beat up relies on an edited clip of an Ardern interview.

    The clip is obviously edited at the very start and doesn’t include defining what Ardern was replying to or referring to as a “failure”.

    I suspect it was “neoliberalism” or the approach that NZ economic management has taken since the mid 1980s that Ardern was referring to. If it was capitalism in its entirety then the comments were over reaching and require further clarification. Of course it could be argued that neoliberalism is a set of policy settings not only allowed in capitalism but that also represent its purest form.

    Anyway, without access to the entire interview we don’t know what preceded the edit or its context, neither he Independent and the deranged right wing blog seem interested in clarifying the point.

    Like

  51. It’s an ignorant beat-up, of course. But it is not worth even discussing.

    Daniel J. Mitchell has an obvious agenda and it is not humane. it’s more to do with what side his bread is buttered on.

    Academically his essay is not even worthy of a high school student, let alone “a clueless college student, regurgitating some nonsense she heard in a sociology class.”

    We are infinitely better off with our current prime minister than we would be if people like him achieved power here. Or should I say “re-achieved?”

    Liked by 1 person

  52. Dan Mitchell described himself as a Libertarian in his interview with Duncan Garner (video in the link) and was critical of Trump because of his protectionist worldview.

    But a DC policy guy isn’t worth listening to. We just need a vacuous leader with bumper sticker slogans

    Let’s do this!

    Like

  53. Oh, I read the article. It was empty. Not even naive- just no logical evidential or rational content.

    Notably you didn’t seem to find anything to defend in it either.

    Like

  54. “No rational content”

    So there is no rational case whatsoever for free market economics? None at all?

    The article had plenty of links. Even if you disagree with the content or are ideologically blind to it, I can’t see how it has “no rational content”

    Like

  55. Please read what I said. One may or may not be able to make a rational case for free market economics. It’s just that this rooster didn’t make a rational case for anything.

    Considering he was attempting to smear our PM I would have thought he would at least have described what he meant by the terms.

    Instead, a completely empty and childish attempt to put down his betters.

    Like

  56. His betters?

    What makes Ms Ardern better than anyone else?

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  57. Again, Andy, read what I said. I did not make a statement about or PM being better than anyone else – I referred to the author of the article, saying:

    “Instead, a completely empty and childish attempt to put down his betters.”

    And it is empty and childish. he is someone pretending to know everything but demonstrating he knows nothing. Childish!

    Like

  58. I like how the world media is referring to the NZF party as “Nationalists”. I guess it won’t be long before we hear of the NZ National Socialist Coalition.

    Appropriate really, given NZ’s close association with Nazi war criminals and general Jew hatred.

    Like

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