Mental Health Break

Imagine if we applied Uber’s new pricing matrix to other services

Uber in the states is experimenting with a new pricing matrix. Uber is attempting to predict what customers are willing to pay. This is not dissimilar to what I call the dentist matrix. You know that tooth that has been giving you a bit of a niggle? You ignore it and do nothing. Then it starts to become uncomfortable so you ring around dentists and get some quotes. The prices are in the hundreds of dollars so you think I will wait a bit longer and see if it goes away. A week later you wake up with a swollen face and in incredible pain. You go to the closest local dentist who explains that the tooth must be removed immediately and tells you that it will cost you over a thousand dollars. You agree immediately.

With Uber, the method of charging will not be based on need or even demand. They are attempting to charge based on how much each individual is willing to pay based on their level of affluence.

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Map of the Day

World Telegraph Lines (1871)

Click here for larger view

“GST to be removed on female hygiene products” petitioner writes to Whaleoil

Melanie and Rebecca – photo via NZ Herald

Whaleoil has always offered an unedited Right of Reply.

Yesterday I commented on the petition to remove GST from feminine hygiene products (If it bleeds, it leads: Petition to remove GST from pads and tampons)

From: “Rebecca” <[email protected]>
Date: 25/05/2017 10:35 AM
Subject: GST to be removed on female hygiene products
To: <whaleoilbeefhooked>

Hi there

It’s Rebecca Jacobs, one of the students involved in the campaign to remove tax on female hygiene products. I would just like to address the fact that we indeed believe that tax should be removed from items such as doctors appointments and fruit and veg but understand this is unattainable at the moment.

We understand that to actually remove the GST from these items would be a very hard task, however are just happy to get the word out there. We do not believe it is right to have tax on an item that we can’t help but buy as a monthly need and intact women spend a lot more than $5 a month on these sanitary products, a majority of women will go through multiple packs a month and that is not including mothers who must buy them for their daughters also.

While you may believe only getting rid of 15% of a cost will not make a difference, it is at least a start and will save money for those who don’t have the money to spare.

Thank you very much
Rebecca Jacobs

Thanks Rebecca.

You have my respect for speaking up and trying to create change in a positive way.   That sets you and your friend apart from most others.

I do choose to disagree with your views, although I understand that you can hold a moral position on what should and what shouldn’t be taxed.

The problem I have is – who decides what’s in or out?

And when governments change and the will of the people is reflected differently, what else will get added or removed from that list?   Will it be used for political agendas to encourage or punish specific industries involved with sugar, salt, fats or what have you?

In the end, taxes to pay for things must come from somewhere.  Just as money to assist those who need it most needs to come from somewhere.

To break the GST system is not the best way to do this, but I accept that’s my view and not yours.

Personally I believe a more effective solution is a community based initiative where churches, doctors clinics,  community centres and schools work in partnership with like-minded businesses.   I would imagine Steve Tindal to be the sort of person that could be approached to see what’s possible.

But before we start that – can you (or anyone) quantify the problem?   Exactly how many women are truly unable to take care of themselves through hardship?

Would a directed and personal approach help them better than a packet of pads that is 50 cents to a dollar cheaper than before?

 

 

London becomes Wogistan

The BBC writes

Something quite remarkable happened in London in the first decade of the new millennium.

The number of white British people in the capital fell by 620,000 – equivalent to the entire population of Glasgow moving out.

The consequence, as revealed by the latest census, is that white Brits are now in a minority in London, making up just 45% of its residents.

So where have they gone to – and why did they leave?

Remarkably, they can’t even see the truth.  There is no “white flight” you see.  It’s just a desire for country living.   Yeah, I wish I was kidding.
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So what is Sexual Harassment?

Some employers do not understand what sexual harassment is and to be fair many ordinary New Zealanders do not understand what it is either. Some people seem to think that if the employee doesn’t constantly and loudly object to each and every objectionable action then they are accepting/tolerating the actions and therefore it is consensual and not sexual harassment. I went to the Employment New Zealand website to find out what constitutes sexual harassment.

Sexual harassment

An employee is sexually harassed if their employer (or a representative of their employer):

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Photo of the Day

The front page of the Daily Mirror.  In what became known as “The Dreadnought Hoax,” the six convinced the Dreadnought’s officers that they were the “Emperor of Abyssinia” (now Ethiopia) and his entourage, and they were received with high honours.

BUNGA! BUNGA!

The Dreadnought Hoax

In 1915 during the First World War, HMS Dreadnought rammed and sank a German submarine—the only battleship ever to do so. Among the telegrams of congratulation was one that read “BUNGA BUNGA”

One of the lighter moments of Virginia Woolf’s life is when she took part in a very public practical joke cooked up by her brother Adrian Stephen and his friend and classmate Horace Cole. On February 10, 1910, the three of them, along with three other friends, dressed up as a group of foreign diplomats from Abyssinia and British Foreign Office officials. The six disguised friends requested to be taken on a tour of the H.M.S. Dreadnought, the most important warship in England at the time.  The captain and crew of the ship were fooled, and they showed Woolf and company the secret areas of the ship. The group even imitated the foreign language!  Horace could not let the joke end there.  He alerted the press about what they had done, and this photograph was printed in the newspaper.

February 7th, 1910 was the date for one of the most famous practical jokes in British military history.

Renowned prankster Horace de Vere Cole alongside his motley crew of writers and artists including Virginia Woolf decided to answer a request from his friend – an officer aboard HMS Hawke – to hoax their fierce rivals on HMS Dreadnought.

Virginia explained:

“The officers of the Hawke and the Dreadnought had a feud. … And Cole’s friend who was on the Hawke had come to Cole, and said to him, ‘You’re a great hand at hoaxing people; couldn’t you do something to pull the leg of the Dreadnought?”

Horace obliged.

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Angry and Robbo’s budget comments

Nostalgia

Labour leader Andrew Little said the total package meant it would be the top income earners, that would benefit the most. The problem with the Accommodation Supplement was that it tended to be a subsidy to landlords.

“And actually, there’s a pretty good consensus – even amongst National Party MPs – we are going to have to do something about it, because it’s fuelling the wrong kind of response as a solution.”

But Little was also not opposed to threshold changes, if Labour became the Government after the September election.

“We won’t support the current tax package, we’re totally committed to our policy platform, which is rebuilding the social foundations. But the truth is there is also additional tax revenue, so we’ll go away and do the sums,” he said. Read more »

Cartoon of the Day

[POLL] The 2017 budget and you