What sort of an arsehole would shoot at power lines

Some wankers have been shooting at power lines and Winston Peters isn’t at all happy.

If Northland power lines have been damaged intentionally the perpetrators should face a tough penalty, says Northland MP and Leader of New Zealand First Rt Hon Winston Peters.

“We want them to do hard labour, in the community. They need to be putting their backs into doing something useful for the many people they have hurt through such deliberate and spiteful acts.

“By causing the power outage today many people have been affected, some through the loss of business.   Read more »

$100 fine for streaming Joe Parker’s live boxing bout

Bit of a Pyrrhic victory for Duco, since the cost of the Pay per view was a bit under sixty bucks.

Sky TV and Duco Events have had a victory in their battle against illegal streamers ahead of Joseph Parker’s WBO heavyweight title fight.

And after having won the test cases at district court level on Wednesday, they have warned they will up the ante for piracy when Parker takes on Mexican Andy Ruiz in Auckland on Saturday night, a fight that will be broadcast on Sky’s Arena pay-per-view channel at a cost of $59.95.

Pirating of Parker’s fights using Facebook’s live video function has become a major issue for the broadcaster and promoter since the star fighter’s win over Carlos Takam in Auckland in May.

Sky and Duco took civil proceedings against pirates who unlawfully streamed Parker’s subsequent knockout win against Solomon Haumono in Christchurch in July.

The companies confirmed that they had obtained judgment against seven individuals, with the judge satisfied that each defendant had infringed Sky’s copyright.

The judge granted an injunction restraining any further infringement of the copyright work and ordered each defendant to delete and/or destroy any copies held, including from Facebook.

They were also ordered to pay nominal damages of $100 as well as costs of $2,670.

The court costs, 26.7 times higher than the fine, will be the more prohibitive part.

Sky and Duco will have a 12-person team searching the web for piracy on Saturday. Importantly, they now also have Facebook’s co-operation.

Duco’s CEO Martin Snedden was delighted with the legal victory, especially the timing with TV revenue so crucial to recouping the $4m costs of staging the title fight.

“From Duco’s point of view the big thing is the court is saying yes, illegal streaming is a break of our legal rights and those that do that can expect to be dealt with if we bring them to court. It’s great,” Snedden said.

“In this first batch of judgements we set out to create the precedent not to take a punitive approach to people. We got an award of nominal damages plus court costs.

“We can (push for more) if we choose too. These were really test cases and what we are trying to do is send a message to people that we are serious about this.

“People are really on notice now. From a legal point of view there is no defence of ‘oh we didn’t know’ or ‘it’s accidental’.”

In my mind, re-broadcasting the fight via Facebook was always a dodgy prospect.  But at $100 the court has basically said to Duce to stop being idiots and live with the fact this stuff is going to happen.

What they will find harder to prevent is people tuning in to the dozens of sports streaming services that are rebroadcasting a Free to Air or subscription service sports program to the Internet.  These are invariably outside of Sky TV and Duco’s legal reach, and due to the one-off and relatively brief nature of the event, impossible to stop.

The Sky TV and Duco people will have copies tapes, CDs and/or downloaded music or a movie at some time in their lives.  Some “shrinkage” is to be expected and priced into the product.  Taking people to court to hand them a $100 fine is in the end counter productive in the sense it will have cost more to make the point than it did in lost revenue.


– Stuff

Are you aggravating someone’s agonising gender dysphoria pain? Stop it!

They is back.

Why is this issue important?

Gender is an important thing for us to discuss because even in Aotearoa, there are still inequalities across the gender spectrum. Women still face a gender pay-gap, still suffer high rates of domestic partner violence, still face everyday sexism when they’re just trying to live their lives. This is something we discuss quite a lot, and that’s slowly working to help address these inequalities.

However, a discussion we don’t have enough is the one about non-binary or transgender people and how society treats us.


How do we talk about it sensibly?

Real talk here: fact is, some trans kid you don’t know who has an article in Stuff about their transition isn’t detrimental to your way of life, at all. So why abuse them in a Stuff comment?

How are they harming you by being who they are? Don’t you have better things to do?

You have to remember and respect that everyone’s lives are different and everyone experiences Aotearoa differently.

We might all be human beings – “one race, the human race!!!” – but we all have differences, and differences in gender identityare one of those things we actually can’t help. And that’s okay.

We need to continue conversations in Aotearoa about transgender people or non-binary people, about who we are, what we are, and about the fact that we’re just normal people just like you, and that different is beautiful too. Read more »

Mental Health Break

Caution:  langauge

Misleading Data used by Chris Hipkins for another hit on Charter Schools

I was disappointed but not surprised to see another attack on Vanguard military school yesterday by Chris Hipkins. I have written many articles about Charter schools as part of my investigative series and I have time and time again pointed out the truth and have shown that the critics were not comparing apples with apples.

Misleading data has again been used in order to try to make very successful schools look bad.

Labour Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins, who obtained the documents, said it showed charter schools have been “massively overstating” their pass rates when compared with the rest of the country’s schools.

…In one case a school reported a 93.3 per cent pass rate when the facts show only 6.7 per cent of leavers achieved NCEA Level 2.

-NZ Herald

Since Vanguard Military school was one of the charter schools smeared by the article I will use it as an example to show the problem with the data that Chris Hipkins has referred to.

Read more »

Map of the Day

Shearer – the leader Labour squandered through in-fighting

David Shearer is a loss to our politics. One of those rare parliamentarians held in high regard on both sides of the House, the Government has readily enlisted his knowledge and experience of the United Nations in the campaign to win a seat on the Security Council and other international projects. He was almost certain to be foreign minister in the next Labour Government whenever that might be. He must have made his decision to leave Parliament for a UN post long before John Key caught almost everyone by surprise on Monday.

Suddenly, the odds on the next election have narrowed and Shearer may be wishing he was staying, but probably not. He has had a good taste of political life in the seven years since he won the Mt Albert seat vacated by Helen Clark. He was elected Labour’s leader just two years later, the last to be chosen by the party’s MPs alone. His quiet manner and diffident mode of speaking was blamed for Labour’s continued poor polling, though it has to said it was polling better under him than it has under his successors so far.

Read more »

Key’s divisive management exposed during leadership pitch

…14 MPs more or less agreed on English as Leader but were apparently divided over the deputy leadership between Paula Bennett and Simon Bridges.

English apparently convinced them that he was willing to “refresh” the Cabinet and to open up other Government positions such as the Whips and Select Committee chairs.

But it appears that he was unwilling to budge on moving the core inner Cabinet — Paula Bennett, Gerry Brownlee and Steven Joyce — out of their Ministerial offices.

However, he did undertake to run a more inclusive Government where opinion from the backbench would be listened to.

That’s telling.  Under Key, the backbench have been out in the cold.   Just like it happened under Clark.  You were either part of the elite, or… cannon fodder.   Read more »

Meanwhile, back at the Ranch… another byelection

David Shearer’s bombshell announcement he’s off to sort out problems in another country has been overshadowed by National’s leadership contest.

Mr Shearer, the MP for Mt Albert since 2009 and Labour’s foreign affairs spokesman, has been put forward to lead the United Nations’ mission in South Sudan.

His departure would prompt a by-election in the Auckland safe Labour seat – its second since Mr Shearer replaced Helen Clark in 2009.

It would be the third this parliamentary term, and right on the back of the Mt Roskill by-election, where Labour’s Michael Wood claimed the seat vacated by Auckland Mayor Phil Goff by more than 11,000 votes, though the Electoral Commission will release the official result next week.

Last year, NZ First leader Winston Peters stomped to victory in the Northland by-election. That was six months after voters elected Mike Sabin (he resigned for personal reasons).

Each by-election costs the taxpayer about $1m, the Electoral Commission says. By comparison, the flag referendum cost $26m and a general election costs about $30m.

Perhaps we should encourage MPs thinking of leaving to get it all over with so we can get a three-for-one deal.   Read more »

Photo of the Day

We all know of “the luck of the Irish” but this strange escape tale shows us just how lucky some Irish can get.

The Wild Geese

The Catalpa escape created a dazzling international sensation in its day. Its intelligent heroes were celebrated as using Irish wit and ingenuity to extricate themselves from their perceived injustice

This is the most successful prison break in Australian history. It was an international rescue effort that took years to organise, and which finally freed six Irish prisoners from Fremantle gaol. The rescue ship was an American whaler called The Catalpa. The escape was so dramatic that it’s now a symbol of human resilience, even resurrection.

In 1876, after 8 years of incarceration in Western Australia, six Irish political prisoners escaped on board the American whaler Catalpa. Under the pretext of a whaling voyage, the Catalpa and its unassuming captain had sailed from New Bedford to liberate the prisoners.

On Easter Monday, 1876, six Irish political prisoners, known as military Fenians, were rescued from ‘a living tomb’. This was how the world’s toughest prison, Fremantle gaol, was described by its inmates. The rescuer was one Captain Anthony, a Quaker sea captain who had no connection with the Irish cause. He put his crew, his family, his financiers and his own life in danger to sail from New Bedford in America to Perth in Western Australia on a trip that was disguised as a whale hunt. Why? Because, as he told his grandson, it was the right thing to do.

Read more »