Posts by Tom Semmens

  • Hard News: Cabinet and the Reeferendum, in reply to Sacha,

    Peter Dunne is not impressed.

    Of course he is not impressed, that creakingly ancient stuffed shirt made an art form of obfuscation dressed in up a bow-tied tweed of supercilious pomposity.

    Sevilla, Espana • Since Nov 2006 • 2210 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Cabinet and the Reeferendum,

    It is now blindingly obvious National are going to run a “just say no, two ticks for blue” campaign next election with maximum fact free FUD.

    Middle aged male blowhards in the media will reckon their love and support National's "strong stand".

    Sevilla, Espana • Since Nov 2006 • 2210 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Digital persuasion and the…,

    I would like to see the NZ police issue a warrant for the arrest of Mark Zuckerburg in relation to the Christchurch shooting video and seek his extradition.

    NZ is a serious country with a proper rule of law so the US courts would have to hear the case and Zuckerburg would have to take it seriously.

    Not that I think we'd ever be able to extradite him here on a charge of abetting terror. But to paraphrase Lyndon Johnson, it would be great to get him into a courthouse and make him deny it.

    Sevilla, Espana • Since Nov 2006 • 2210 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: These things we must now change, in reply to steven crawford,

    Because semi-autos allow you to dice the animal as you kill it? Our laws will still allow five and seven shot magazines.

    Given that there are some people who think the only acceptable weapons with which men should fight boars is a plastic spoon and a couple of hellhounds named “Adolf” and “Satan” that even their owner won't pat unexpectedly, anyone who can’t hit an angry pig with a seven round mag deserves to be tuskered.

    Sevilla, Espana • Since Nov 2006 • 2210 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: These things we must now change,

    I was wondering how it would take things to get back to normal. As it turns out, about two weeks.

    it is all well and good for the Herald and it’s owners to throw their hands in the air in horror and exclaim “how did we get here????” but the reality is they contribute to the febrile atmosphere of entitlement, anger, othering, intolerance and all the rest of it every damn time they publish a rant by this asshole and all the rest of the clickbait assholes in their stable.

    The MSM need to own their contribution to the growth of hate. There is a direct cultural line linking Mike Hosking and all the other angry shock jocks to the logical outcome of constant ravings against the “enemy” and that logical outcome is the Christchurch shooter.

    Sevilla, Espana • Since Nov 2006 • 2210 posts Report Reply

  • Legal Beagle: Questions, but no answers,…,

    When I was younger and did a spot of deer stalking we would kit up in our swanndri bushshirts and shorts, grab our trusty bolt action rifles plus 20 rounds and hike into the ranges to perhaps bag ourselves a deer, but mainly to get away and eat simple food and drink some rum in a rusty hut. A nice gun was nice, but an old sporterised .303 would do just as well. It was tool, for a job to be done should the opportunity present itself.

    A few years back, I noted a guy about to go bush standing on the side of the Taupo road. He looked like a Serbian warlord, full matching Russian style camo, jungle boots, and military style webbing and he was equipped with two SKS self-loading rifles. I wondered at the change in the type of bloke who goes shooting these days.

    The point is that the contagion of the US obsession with firearms as a marker of the wider culture war around identity -with all the attendant attitudes – for a particular section of society has certainly now got a decent foothold in NZ. So there isn’t much point in “negotiating” with the gun lobby in the assumption they are a bunch of aesthetic collectors, grizzled farmers and salt of the earth hunters and trappers who will see reason when you tell that as a result of a massacre you will require new rules around some of their tools. The gun nuts are fundamentally unappeasable, because gun control is just another front in the endless culture wars.

    Military style weapons in particular have become a symbol of power and ego for the gun nuts, and by extension crazy crackpot white power types.

    Sevilla, Espana • Since Nov 2006 • 2210 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Cannabis reform is a serious…,

    The chances of getting any serious buy in from the National party for decent drug law reform seems to diminish by the day. For the right, the power of the culture wars seems just to much. Simon Bridges was at it again today, when asked attacking the Greens (in relation to the creation of an astroturf Green party) for supporting drug reform.

    All in all, the focus groups and polling must be telling National their are votes in provincial and suburban NZ in scare mongering up a culture war on drugs. As long as National remain committed to political expediency on this issue, the chances of meaningful and sensible reform our drugs laws are not good.

    Sevilla, Espana • Since Nov 2006 • 2210 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Cannabis reform is a serious…,

    The growing adoption (everyone from the screamingly loony Stephen Franks to the insecure Simon Bridges) by right wing radicals (I won't call them conservatives, the real conservatives these days are the centrists who run Labour) in NZ of Breitbart style talking points Trumpian culture war rhetoric shows how the US environment of a toxic right wing media that brainwashes it's audience has consequences beyond the borders of the USA itself.

    The danger these people pose to social order is ominous.

    Sevilla, Espana • Since Nov 2006 • 2210 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The Midterms,

    All those "tight" races going to the Republicans? Vote suppression and Gerrymanders work.

    Sevilla, Espana • Since Nov 2006 • 2210 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The Midterms,

    How well entrenched though is our democracy from the sort of voter suppression shenanagins we are seeing in the USA?

    What would stop a National government led by a candidate selected from their Auckland Tea Party faction (Judith, anyone?) and infected by hard right GOP inspired radicals hell bent on trashing our democracy simply stacking the electoral commission with cronies, introducing onerous voter ID rules, then (on the advice of it's said cronies on the electoral commission, of course) almost completely de-funding the electoral commission, making the running of elections entirely up to volunteers? Remove a cheeky 100,000-200,000 of your your oppnents voters and suppressing the turn out would mightily help National to rule alone forever...

    National MPs would simply be so delighted at the idea of permanent rule that they'd look the other way, like so many GOP congressmen and women have done.

    Sevilla, Espana • Since Nov 2006 • 2210 posts Report Reply

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