Saturday, June 30, 2007

"Sicko" is sick

Many of you will be aware of the new Mike Moore propaganda, "Sicko", which slates the US health system. This is the best and most succinct response I have seen yet.

While denouncing America's health care system, Michael Moore lauds Great Britain's free National Health Service (NHS). But for free hospital care, Britons pay an awfully high price, says Helen Evans, director of Nurses for Reform.

After nearly six decades of attempting to make socialized medicine work, the NHS is in a perilous state:

* There are nearly one million British patients on waiting lists for treatment, and 200,000 Britons are currently waiting merely to get on NHS waiting lists.
* As a result, each year the NHS cancels around 100,000 operations because of shortages.
* Further, when patients are finally admitted to state hospitals, more than 10 percent of patients contract infections and illnesses that they did not have prior to arrival.

Friday, June 29, 2007

"Society hates us"

Feminists are such sad sacks. I don't often look at left-wing blogs but whenever I do the reason why I don't is re-inforced. Drivel.

I have a theory, maybe it's more of a belief, that any woman's life can be told as a feminist story. That all of our lives are profoundly shaped by growing up in a society that hates us.

Ban on party pills (cont.)

The NZ Herald has a passable editorial on the matter. Only passable because they state clearly the dangers associated with prohibition but conclude that only when BZP itself is proven to have undesirable long-term consequences would a ban be justified. Go figure.

But this statement really has to take the cake. The arrogance/stupidity of this committee and Anderton in overlooking all the historic evidence about how people behave under prohibition is gob-smacking.

It [the Expert Advisory Committee on Drugs] conceded there was no guarantee a ban would lead to decreased use of party pills but suggested their side-effects, such as nausea, dehydration and lack of appetite, would dissuade use if they became harder to find, more expensive and carried the risk of a fine or imprisonment.

When did the risk of a hangover stop people buying and using alcohol? So those who want to continue to use party pills will be exposed to more danger and criminality while the committee runs its doomed experiment. Just who is getting off on this? Cynical or naive politicians pandering to public ignorance.

I'm reminded of those people who still believe in communism, holding it wasn't the idea that was flawed - just the way it was implemented. They frighten and appal me.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Gift for gangs

It's richly ironic that at a time when worries about gang culture are foremost the government has gifted them party pills. And let's not forget who nagged them into it.

Get real

I heard this guy on TV last night asking employers to cut their staff a bit of slack while the America's Cup is on.

Because he is. He can afford to. He runs a Crown Entity. He and his staff get paid by the taxpayer, not clients or customers who pay for the delivery of products or services. He's the head of SPARC.

Who'd have thought it

It may be Gordon Brown's dream home, but Downing Street is in a seedier area than folk imagine. In a council house just over the back fence lives an extended family run by a grumpy old woman who keeps a pack of fierce dogs. Her husband makes racist comments and a local shopkeeper says he murdered his son's girlfriend – but the police do nothing. Most of their kids have broken marriages, and their grandchildren are always out clubbing. They all live off the state, and every day the papers are full of their excesses. Who'd want to live near Buckingham Palace?

(Hat tip Adam Smith)

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Families Commission redundant

A report from the Families Commission (over 100 pages) basically concludes;

The authors argue that assessments of policy impacts on family form are often based on relatively weak evidence. They conclude: "there is no evidence that government policies have been a primary driver of the major social and demographic changes affecting family form that have occurred over the past forty years" (p 89).

I find that astonishing. What's your reaction?

I argued against the creation of this commission. But on government terms its job is to research how policy affects families and advocate accordingly. If the above statement was true haven't they just shot themselves in the foot?

Proof that the media treat Maori "unfairly"

Today's DomPost published a front page photo of Tariana Turia apparently having a wee snooze (she says she just had her eyes shut). The Post published this as an example of what they will not be able to use after the rules change. The Maori Party has just issued a statement which says,

".......we know too well the number of studies which have found that newspaper and television are unfairly unbalanced in their treatment of Maori people and issues” said Mrs Turia.

“A study commissioned by the Broadcasting Standards Authority in 2003 for example, reported that in some media, denigrating and insulting coverage of Maori was reported” said Mrs Turia. “This was a finding that the United Nations Special Rapporteur also highlighted in his New Zealand report”.

To add even further weight to her claim, of the eight photos published half were of Maori MPs - Tariana Turia, Shane Jones, Ron Mark, and Dover Samuels!

This is a bit remiss of the DomPost. In the interests of fairness only one Maori MP should have been featured commensurate with their share of the general population. And only every eighth crime story should be about Maori, every eighth child abuse story about Maori, etc.



40-ish = 49
Adventurous = Slept with everyone
Athletic = No tits
Average looking = Ugly
Beautiful = Pathological liar
Contagious Smile = Does a lot of pills
Emotionally secure = On medication
Feminist = Fat
Free spirit = Junkie
Friendship first = Former very *friendly* person
Fun = Annoying
New Age = Body hair in the wrong places
Open-minded = Desperate
Outgoing = Loud and Embarrassing
Passionate = Sloppy drunk
Professional = Bitch
Voluptuous = Very Fat
Large frame = Hugely Fat
Wants Soul mate = Stalker


1. Yes = No
2. No = Yes
3. Maybe = No
4. We need = I want
5. I am sorry = you'll be sorry
6. We need to talk = you're in trouble
7. Sure, go ahead = you better not
8. Do what you want = you will pay for this later
9. I am not upset = Of course I am upset, you moron!
10. You're very attentive tonight = is sex all you ever think about?


1. I am hungry = I am hungry
2. I am sleepy = I am sleepy
3. I am tired = I am tired
4. Nice dress = Nice cleavage!
5. I love you = Let's have sex now
6. I am bored = Do you want to have sex?
7. May I have this dance? = I'd like to have sex with you
8. Can I call you sometime? = I'd like to have sex with you
9. Do you want to go to a movie? = I'd like to have sex with you
10. Can I take you out to dinner? = I'd like to have sex with you
11. Those shoes don't go with that outfit = I'm gay

And finally.....

A recent scientific study found that women find different male faces attractive depending on where they are in their menstrual cycle.
For example, when a woman is ovulating she will prefer a man with rugged, masculine features.
However when she is menstruating, she prefers a man doused in petrol and set on fire, with scissors stuck in his eye and a cricket stump shoved up his backside.

(Thanks James)

Another day, another yawn

Did you know that, "Low self esteem is having catastrophic results in today's society"?

That's why we need....wait for it...... an International Self Esteem Day supported by the Auckland Chamber of Commerce. And it's today!

Personally I would have substituted 'low self esteem' with socialism, feminism, or any other form of forced collectivism. Then we could have a really interesting sort of day like an "International F--- Feminism Day".

The organiser of this esteemable event is a woman called Janice,"the lady with 'nice' in her name" so she says. The only thing I have got in my name is 'itch'. Ooooh. Now I feel really bad about myself.

Another voice of reason

Top Scottish cop suggests 'legalising' heroin;

John Vine, Tayside's Chief Constable, is believed to be the most senior officer in Scotland to back the proposal. He said: "We need to consider things that have perhaps been unpalatable in the past, such as the prescribing of class A drugs to chaotic users.

"If we could help addicts to get a fix on the state rather than from dealers, then it's possible we could stop them housebreaking and thieving."

He admitted enforcement had failed to make a dent in the illegal drugs trade or stem the rising tide of drug-related crime, despite seizures of hard narcotics in his area tripling in the past year.

Mr Vine said as much as 75 per cent of property crime was believed to be drug-related. But he insisted enforcement could not, by itself, deal with the rising use of hard drugs.

"If we do not reduce demand [for drugs], there will always be people coming in with more to supply," he said. "I am suggesting that we could have a pilot in my area of prescribing Class A substances to chaotic users".

Mr Vine - awarded a CBE in the Queen's birthday honours list - also called for special drugs courts to be established.

He warned: "We are not going to make progress unless certain things are taken out of the 'too difficult' box."

Shooting galleries already exist in a number of countries including Australia, Canada and a number of European countries. But it seems other countries reject them mainly because of unfavourable public opinion. Public opinion is often the no.1 enemy of reason.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

The glass half full approach

Well I am glad Destiny at least are enjoying their poll rating of 1%.

I don't imagine anybody else on this list will be too thrilled.

NZ Herald minor party results (25 June 07):

Green - 4 per cent
NZ First - 3 per cent
Maori Party - 2.4
Destiny - 1 per cent
Act - 0.6 per cent
United Future - 0.3 per cent
Progressives - 0.3 per cent

Abolish the FPA, says Karl du fresne

Karl du Fresne has angrily attacked the Family Planning Association in today's DomPost. He claims they have been a colossol tax-payer funded failure citing the rising teenage abortion rate and increasing incidence of STDs. Sex education or 'family planning' has encouraged promiscuity, he says.

Teens are probably having sex younger but the teenage birth rate is a lot lower than in the past - 70 per 100 in the early seventies down to just under 30 now. So the higher abortion rate on it's own cannot be taken to indicate more 'promiscuity'.

He doesn't mention what the alternatives to sex education might be - whether he would prefer abstinence programmes (which don't work so may be why he hasn't put them forward.)

He does however 'out' the ex-Family Planning head, Gill Greer for being a 'leftist lesbian' in charge of family planning, questioning the sense of that. I wonder if her replacement is a leftist lesbian and does it really matter?

His main point is the government should stop putting taxpayer money into this outfit. I have some sympathy for that view but for as long as we have a a public health system foisted upon us, 'family planning' or contraception provision and advice comes under that umbrella.

Not helping themselves

There is only so much to be said about the plight of large families who are struggling with debt. Another Simon Collin's piece highlights various family budgets. One couple has seven children and gets near enough to $60,000 clear per annum. But they have outgoings of nearly $41,600. Why do they load themselves up so heavily? And more importantly, why have so many kids???

"At the moment my daughter keeps on asking, 'Mum, can I have warm clothes?"' she says.

"I say, 'Wait, because I can't afford it at the moment.' I'm feeling sick. She keeps on asking me, 'Mum, I need the warm clothes,' because she walks from home to the bus stop."

I feel sorry for these people but exasperated by them. They make choices that are beyond other people's control but are getting almost $28,000 in family assistance.

What would make a difference long term is their children being taught how to handle money and how to do things in the right order.

Monday, June 25, 2007

The other side of foodbank demand

The stories I could tell you about food parcels but privacy constraints prevent me. The people who operate foodbanks know about the abuse but are too soft-hearted to deal with it.

But look here. Trawl past the usual stuff about debt, alienation and disparity and there is a food bank official telling it like it is;

Gaylene Bourne, of Mercy Missions, said her group tightened its policy 15 months ago and its food parcel numbers had dropped from 500 a week in the early 1990s to 50 or 60 a week now.

"One of our criteria is that families must be looking to move forward. There are still a lot of families looking for handouts, not a hand-up."

Sunday, June 24, 2007

"Ending the Welfare State Through the Power of Private Action"

This is a piece by Richard M. Ebeling, the president of the Foundation for Economic Education. He points out that Americans are opting out of the welfare state through taking responsibility for their children's education, their own retirement, and health.

The paternalistic state was not created in a day. It has grown in size and legitimacy over a century, and it will not be gone in the blink of an eye. But it is being undermined by a real “people’s” movement, the spontaneous choices and actions of millions of Americans wanting greater self-responsibility and less dependency on the powers that be. They are moving the world away from the welfare state one person at a time. That is the strength and the power of liberty.

Of interest in today's SST

Not much. But in case you missed it there was a tiny snippet saying National would not adopt the kind of welfare get-tough policies the Howard government are planning. No surprises there. National's welfare policy will be a 'status quo' policy craftily disguised as reformist by revisiting (but renaming) 90s policies.

Speaking of re-naming things the editorial calls for the term "Nanny State" to be dropped . Fine. But it has to be replaced because the existence and growth of the pernicious, interventionist state is REAL. "Grand-nanny state perhaps."

Harking back to the Aussie reform plans I see they are talking about food stamps in the form of EFPOST cards. Cards that can only be used for certain items. They tried this in the US. One word for the Aussies. Corruptible. It only takes one or two store-owners who are prepared to swipe the card for 'goods' but return a lesser amount in cash and your scheme is shot to pieces.

One article worth a thorough reading is the Braunias interview with John Tamihere. Darren Hughes is described as a "little tug-muscle", H2's glasses clouded up when she met with JT and about being associate Maori Affairs Minister, "I used to be Parekura's viagra!"