Government electoral law change priorities are amusing

amy adams 3

Amy Adams’ electoral law changes priorities are amusing.

Richard Harman reports:

Broadcasting Minister Amy Adams say legislation will be introduced into Parliament next week to make the TV campaign broadcast changes.

The Government will allocate $3.605 million to political parties to buy time on TV.

But that will be all the time they will be allowed to purchase.

They may also spend some of their allocation on on-line advertising though (confusingly) they will also additionally be able to spend their own money on extra on-line advertising.

Only TVNZ was obliged to broadcast the formal opening and closing broadcasts, and Ms Adams appear to have bought their argument that the lower audiences for the broadcasts deprived them of revenue.   Read more »

Generation Snowflake thinks free speech is a weapon used against them

The liberal panty-waists of Generation Snowflake are now arguing that simply advocating for free speech is “a cudgel against them“.

They sound remarkably like a few health troughers I am acquainted with.

The conventional wisdom surrounding American college life these days views campuses as hotbeds of intolerance for free speech, with students themselves leading the charge.

But a new report by PEN America, to be released on Monday, questions that story line while warning of a different danger: a growing perception among young people that cries of “free speech” are too often used as a cudgel against them.

Poor little petals. Can’t cope with free speech.

The report, titled “And Campus for All: Diversity, Inclusion and Freedom of Speech at U.S. Universities,” covers a broad range of hot-button topics, including trigger warnings, microaggressions, safe spaces and controversial campus speakers. While it cites “troubling incidents of speech curtailed,” it finds no “pervasive” crisis.

But it does worry about an “apparent chasm” between free speech advocates and student activists, thanks in part to a conversation that sometimes dismisses students’ demands for equity and inclusion instead of parsing how they do, or don’t, infringe on the “bedrock principles” of free speech.

“A rising generation may be turning against free speech,” the report warns. “Before these developments deepen and harden, PEN America hopes to open up a wider, more searching dialogue that can help all sides to these debates better identify common ground.”   Read more »

Mental Health Break

Splitting hacking hairs: Journalistic ethics 101

screenshot-Whaleoil screenshot-Whaleoil

So let me get this straight… Read more »

Map of the Day


Rivers of Europe in Rainbow Colours

Click here for larger view


Mark Steyn on the criminalisation of ‘free’ speech


Credit: Bill Leak

One of the reasons I’m in favor of Hillary Clinton being decisively defeated next month is because a Democrat victory, bolstered by a five-four (or six-three, or seven-two) majority on the Supreme Court, will be disastrous for free speech in the United States. President Obama has just declared that the “wild wild west” of the Internet has to be “rebuilt” to “flow” through “some sort of curating function” – because apparently the ever less subtle filtering of Big Social (the Twitter and Facebook monopolies, the Standard Oil of our time) are no longer enough. What’s next? As I had cause to remind the Democrats during my Senate testimony, too many prominent members of their party are already wholesale enthusiasts for the criminalization of dissent – a position that renders politics both irrelevant and impossible. Think of the most repressive safe-spaced college campus in America: that’s where the whole country’s headed.

Read more »

Court of Appeal decision on election advertising leaves us none the wiser


The Electoral Commission sought the view of the Court of Appeal to clarify the approach the Commission should be taking to the interpretation of “election advertisement” when issuing advisory opinions and the meaning of “election programme” when providing advice on election broadcasting. Read more »

Government implements more pointless bureaucracy

Building and Housing Minister Nick Smith says most pool drownings occur because gates no longer close, fences have not been maintained or changes have been made that allow access.

“Half of inspected pools have been found to be non-compliant, exposing children to risk,” he said after parliament passed his bill on Thursday.

Included in the raft of changes to the laws around pools is a requirement on retailers and manufacturers to inform purchasers of their legal child safety obligations.

Councils have been given new powers to issue infringement notices.

Spa pools no longer have to be fenced because they’re considered to be low risk.

But they must have a lockable, child-resistant cover and must be at least 760mm above ground.

The new laws come into force on January 1 next year.

So what is the actual size of the problem?   Read more »

Photo of the Day

Charles Lindbergh - Flight Across the Atlantic. General Interest 1927 Lindbergh lands in Paris Share this: facebook twitter google+ PRINT CITE American pilot Charles A. Lindbergh lands at Le Bourget Field in Paris, successfully completing the first solo, nonstop transatlantic flight and the first ever nonstop flight between New York to Paris. His single-engine monoplane, The Spirit of St. Louis, had lifted off from Roosevelt Field in New York 33 1/2 hours before.

Charles Lindbergh – Flight Across the Atlantic. 1927. American pilot Charles A. Lindbergh lands at Le Bourget Field in Paris, successfully completing the first solo, nonstop transatlantic flight and the first ever nonstop flight between New York to Paris. His single-engine monoplane, The Spirit of St. Louis, had lifted off from Roosevelt Field in New York 33 1/2 hours before.

Charles Lindbergh’s Secret German Mistresses

When Charles Lindbergh died in Maui in 1974—by then an environmentalist so dedicated he refused burial with any article of clothing that might contaminate the earth—there seemed little new of consequence left to discover about the once world-celebrated aviator. Lindbergh in fact lived an extraordinarily active romantic life, particularly in the period beginning in 1957 and extending nearly till his death.

Lucky Lindy (as he hated being called) had, by the time that period ended, fathered a total of seven children by three different German women (in addition to the six he had fathered by Anne Morrow Lindbergh). The score card is impressive.

In August of 2003, three German siblings, Dyrk, Astrid, and David Hesshaimer made a startling announcement at a press conference in Munich: Charles Lindbergh, America’s national hero after he became the first pilot to fly across the Atlantic in 1927, was their father. As evidence, the three Hesshaimers, then ranging in age from 36 to 45, whipped out more than 100 love letters that the aviator had sent to their mother, Brigitte, from the late 1950s until his death in 1974. A DNA test taken a few months later confirmed their assertion. This revelation turned out to be just one of many secrets that Lindbergh had kept from the world. As the trio noted in a book that they co-authored with a German journalist the following year, Lindbergh had also engaged in long-term relationships with two other German women, with whom he had fathered four other children.

Read more »

More pointless grandstanding from Labour that shows they aren’t a government in waiting

Labour really does pick battles that no one cares about.

Parliament is going to debate a Labour Party bill that calls for the immediate election of all the members of Environment Canterbury.

It was drafted by Labour’s Canterbury spokeswoman Megan Woods in response to the government’s sacking of all the regional council’s elected members in 2010.

The government replaced them with commissioners because there had been serious delays in water management decisions.

It subsequently decided on a partial return to democratic representation, and in the local body elections earlier this month seven members of the 13-member council were elected.

The government has appointed the other six.

Ms Woods says that’s not good enough.   Read more »