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The prime minister has her hands full

Screenshot: Whaleoil

A new mother is expected to enter into motherhood with sublime ignorance because it is new territory to her. This is probably a good thing otherwise we’d have a huge population decline. Motherhood is the most exciting journey for any woman but at first, it is a strange new territory.

Our prime minister is to be congratulated on giving Neve an excellent start in life by breastfeeding. However, my own experience of around the clock breastfeeding a newborn every one to two hours makes me question how on earth she is coping. Fingers crossed Neve is a good sleeper and not a hungry baby.

I also hope the prime minister is cognisant enough, on limited sleep, to make the adjustments necessary in her daily regime to look after herself. Personally, I fail to see how she can and believe the risk of her collapsing under the demands of family and job is very real.

No one else has held a high-profile position and been a breastfeeding new mum for a very good reason.

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The subject evoked in the collage is the debating of political issues with friends in a public place

Pablo Picasso
Glass and bottle of Suze (after 18 November 1912)
pasted paper, gouache and charcoal

Why is our government biased?

We all think we act fairly and rationally and view the world through both eyes and we certainly expect our government to do the same.

On one subject though, our government has consistently demonstrated bias over the last few years.

Initially we supported Israel in its founding in 1947 but Rob Berg, President of the Zionist Federation of New Zealand, says New Zealand’s relationship with Israel has deteriorated to the point where he wonders if we would do the same in 2018.

He blames bias and we can add ignorance to the faults of the current government.

Israelis stand by a house damaged by a missile fired from Gaza Strip, in a kibbutz near the Israel and Gaza border, early in August.

This government’s bias is also fuelled by the left’s support of Palestinian refugees. Berg says, quote:

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The subject evoked in the collage is the debating of political issues with friends in a public place

Pablo Picasso
Glass and bottle of Suze (after 18 November 1912)
pasted paper, gouache and charcoal

Work and get paid, or don’t work but still get paid?

Construction site photo credit noted.co.nz

Employers can apply to receive funding for employing some of the 50,000 18-24-year-olds who do not work, are not in apprenticeships or training, and have been sitting on their bums for at least six months. Quote:

It was a Labour Party election policy to “ensure all young people who are able, are in work, training or education”. A ‘dole for apprenticeships’ scheme was part of that plan, but original policy would have it apply to young people on a benefit for three or more months, rather than six.

Mana in Mahi will start with a 150 person pilot, expanding to 4,000 people next year.” End of quote.

It is a great and noble idea to get so many young people off their butts and into employment.  But wanting to achieve it and actually achieving it are two different beasts.  Someone needs to explain to Jacinda that “able” to work does not mean “want” to work when she waved her magic wand and promised quote

“We’ll help [young people] earn an apprenticeship or other qualification so they can get on the pathway to life-long work… They get off the benefit and enjoy the dignity of work while encouraging employers to take on apprentices they might otherwise not have trained.”[…]

“Employers who give apprenticeships or traineeships to young unemployed people will be paid the equivalent of the dole for a year.” End of quote.

Paul Hollings, head of trades at Manukau Institute of Technology (M.I.T) agreed with her when he said: quote

They need an opportunity, and this is an opportunity.”  End of quote.

Hollings also said M.I.T can’t produce enough graduates to meet the market.

There is a very big difference between someone who has taken the trouble of training for work, to someone who just sits around waiting for a job to fall in their lap.  M.I.T graduates are motivated to work.  As the old saying goes, you can take a horse to water but you can’t make him drink.

The big question is, will youth actually give up their benefit for apprentice work?  There isn’t enough financial incentive to make them roll out of bed and trundle off to work for five days a week.

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The subject evoked in the collage is the debating of political issues with friends in a public place

Pablo Picasso
Glass and bottle of Suze (after 18 November 1912)
pasted paper, gouache and charcoal

It’s not personal, so let’s define ‘hate speech’

Lauren Southern and Tommy Robinson

When a government attacks a personal belief that we consider to be a fundamental part of our existence, and removes our freedom of choice or worse, we can feel that they are personally attacking us.  They are not. They are simply pursuing their own social agenda and we happened to get in the way. Credit for this thought belongs to Dinesh D’Souza in his book  Death of a Nation.

D’Souza points out that Abraham Lincoln predicted the future in his Lyceum address of the great American nation when he said  quote 

“At what point then is the approach of danger to be expected? I answer, if it ever reach us, it must spring up amongst us. It cannot come from abroad. If destruction be our lot, we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen, we must live through all time, or die by suicide.” End of quote.

Lincoln said the threat to American freedom would come from their very own people. Likewise in New Zealand, we might identify the threat of a culture alien to our own, such as Islam, but fail to recognize the more familiar but equally dangerous threat springing up amongst us.

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The subject evoked in the collage is the debating of political issues with friends in a public place

Pablo Picasso
Glass and bottle of Suze (after 18 November 1912)
pasted paper, gouache and charcoal

Getting tangled in the flag

The idea of changing the New Zealand flag in 2016 was a wretched waste of time and money, and a monumental failure for John Key when nearly 57% of us voted to keep the original.

Winston Peters, for whatever obscure reason, claimed last weekend that our flag, adopted in 1902, was stolen by the Aussies in 1953 for their national flag.  Winnie once again was plainly wrong. In fact, the Aussies could claim we copied their 1901 flag design and simply changed the background colour and the stars.

Australian Flat 1901 Defaced British Red Ensign

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The subject evoked in the collage is the debating of political issues with friends in a public place

Pablo Picasso
Glass and bottle of Suze (after 18 November 1912)
pasted paper, gouache and charcoal

Winnie’s toughest moment

Winston Peters

Winnie finally appeared on the TV3 AM show on Wednesday morning after getting his knickers in a knot following a previously aborted appearance then a humble pie apology from Duncan Garner.

After a bit of beating around the bush in typical Winston fashion, Garner asked him what was the toughest part of his role as acting Prime Minister. Winnie said:

“The toughest part is right now when I get up this morning and the first item on the news is the teachers are going on strike. Now that is tough because you kind of think to yourself, we’ve done our best as a coalition with the support of the Greens to be responsible about the human face of professionals in this country, nurses, doctors, teaches and people like that, and that part is tough. Otherwise it’s been a breeze and I have to thank my colleagues for helping me do that.” End quote.

Why do we get the feeling that Winnie is making this up as he goes along?

We do know why he is so out of touch though, it’s because he’s been relying on mainstream media!

But unfortunately, he’s still not up to speed because primary teachers signalled almost a month ago on 3 July that they planned strike action. Where were you then Winnie? Quote:

“Primary school teachers and principals will strike – their first industrial action in New Zealand since 1994 – after rejecting a pay offer from the Government.

The New Zealand Educational Institute (NZEI), which represents about 27,000 primary school staff, said members voted “overwhelmingly in favour” of a half-day work stoppage in August, and are now discussing whether to extend the strike to a full day.” End of quote.

We are still waiting for Winnie to keep promises dished out on the campaign trail such as revisiting the highly controversial anti-smacking law and holding a referendum to abolish Maori seats in parliament.  Perhaps he’s forgotten that he made them.

The subject evoked in the collage is the debating of political issues with friends in a public place

Pablo Picasso
Glass and bottle of Suze (after 18 November 1912)
pasted paper, gouache and charcoal

Kiwis behaving badly

There has been a fair amount of dissent between senior politicians on both sides of the Tasman on the issues of deportation, human rights, and regional security, apparently to the point where our relationship with the Aussies is under threat. Quote.

“Two senior New Zealand ministers have taken a brickbat to Australia, calling the politics of deportations “venal” and warning the issue is straining relations between the two countries.” End of quote.

Actually, the dissent comes from our side of the Tasman, the Aussies are carrying on regardless.

The Broadcasting Corporation’s (ABC) 30-minute programme: Don’t Call Australia Home! hosted by ex-Wallaby, Peter FitzSimons claimed that quote:

Australia is detaining, cuffing and deporting more New Zealanders than any other group.” End of quote.

There are more Kiwis in Australia than any other group, given we are their second closest neighbour after Papua New Guinea. But now we are squealing because we think the Aussies are targeting Kiwis in their cracking down on crime.

Patched members of the Comanchero gang from Australia have set up a chapter in New Zealand. Photo / Instagram.

The Aussies are treating Kiwi gang members as badly behaved second cousins. More kudos to them for having the balls to be tough on crime. They cunningly changed their laws to evict, without trial, anyone they deem to be of “bad character” which includes, in some states, associating with gangs.

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The subject evoked in the collage is the debating of political issues with friends in a public place

Pablo Picasso
Glass and bottle of Suze (after 18 November 1912)
pasted paper, gouache and charcoal

Life of Mahd: A comedy about Mohammad

Life of Brian

The 1979 British religious satire comedy film, Life of Brian, starring and written by the comedy group Monty Python, and others, tells the story of Brian, a young Jewish man who is born on the same day as, and next door to, Jesus Christ, but who is subsequently mistaken for him.

Churches of the day were affronted by a satire based on the son of God and there was talk of blasphemy and Christians protested outside movie theatres. The movie was banned in parts of the United Kingdom, Ireland and Norway. Everyone got over it with no violence, no real harm done, and the film became the highest grossing British movie in the United States that year, in fact becoming an icon. There was plenty of criticism from Christian communities but there were no threats of violence or death.

Try making a similar religious satire comedy film today, let’s say on a man we call Mahd, a young Muslim man with the same story as Brian in Life of Brian.  Mahd is mistaken for Mohammad, joins ISIS and attracts an entourage when miracles happen around him. He falls in love with a young Muslim woman named Fatima and they eventually spend the night together, two unmarried young Muslims having sex.   No one in their right mind would make this movie because there’d be hell to pay from the Muslim communities possibly with threats of violence and death.

Salmon Rushdie published his book critical of Islam, The Satanic Verses in the United Kingdom in 1988 forcing him into hiding or risk being killed.  The fatwah on Rushdie is still in place. Quote.

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The subject evoked in the collage is the debating of political issues with friends in a public place

Pablo Picasso
Glass and bottle of Suze (after 18 November 1912)
pasted paper, gouache and charcoal

How do we feel about a part-time prime minister?

The advice of Australian author and working mum Natalie Ritchie to Jacinda Ardern when she returns from maternity leave is: quote.

“To ‘lead like a woman’ and scale her job down to part-time when she returns to work… and to reject the “timetable and conditions designed for a man with a 24/7 wife at home” and reshape her leadership role to suit the demands of motherhood.” End of quote.

Isn’t this simply a case of role reversal? Won’t Jacinda have a 24/7 man at home to care for baby Neve?

Or is there something specific about mothering that men cannot do?

Credit quotesgram.com

Ritchie has been a contributor to Australia’s largest circulating magazine on parenting, CHILD, for the last four years so we can assume she knows a bit about parenting. Quote.

In an interview with the Weekend Herald Ritchie said the decision for Ardern’s partner Clarke Gayford to stay at home was “not the solution”.

Ritchie, a former features editor at Child magazine and author of Roar Like a Woman said just switching the gender roles kept “the old patriarchy firmly in place, while pretending to do away with it”. End of quote.

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The subject evoked in the collage is the debating of political issues with friends in a public place

Pablo Picasso
Glass and bottle of Suze (after 18 November 1912)
pasted paper, gouache and charcoal

Over two million ‘terrorists’ in New Zealand

According to the definition applied by Turkish authorities over half of our Kiwi population would be considered terrorists and charged with ‘Christianization’ if we shared our faith in Turkey because so many of us identify as Christian.

Embed from Getty Images

An American pastor, Andrew Brunson, who has lived and served in a small evangelical Presbyterian congregation in Turkey for over 22 years, was jailed in October 2016, accused of “membership in an armed terrorist organization.” Quote.

“Brunson was charged with terrorism (including “Christianization”) and espionage, which carry a sentence of up to 35 years’ imprisonment. According to the lengthy indictment, the pastor is linked to the movement of Fethullah Gülen — an Islamic cleric who has lived in self-exile in the United States for three decades – and whom the Turkish government accuses of plotting the failed coup against Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in July 2016.” End of quote.

Pro-government Turkish media have demonised Brunson as a “terrorist supporter” and a “spy” hostile to Turkey.

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The subject evoked in the collage is the debating of political issues with friends in a public place

Pablo Picasso
Glass and bottle of Suze (after 18 November 1912)
pasted paper, gouache and charcoal