It was fun while it lasted, but it seems the Maori Party’s sojourn with the right is about to come to an end. But wait, maybe not? Indeed, Tariana Turia and Pita Sharples are not that stupid. They have realised that getting a seat at the roast, even if it is at the kiddies table, is better than begging for scraps outside. It may be too late though, as the party’s four year experiment with centrism has been an epic fail, and may lead to a death knell come 2014.
Yes, they want to kick up a fuss over the asset sales, but it won’t last long. You see the Maori Party doesn’t want to maintain its peoples cultural rights, in fact I doubt they give two shits about what Iwi think, even if they are hobnobbing around the country to gain opinion. No, the Maori Party only want power and (like anyone else) they will sell even their very essence to get it. This is the true genius of John Key. Like him or hate him, he’s perceptive and he’s played a very sophisticated game with the Maori Party. If this was the Wimbledon Final it would be a straight sets win to National. Every policy win for National, is a loss for the Maori Party and now it seems even a National policy failure will have the Maori Party as a casualty.
But the Maori Party cannot complain. When you sleep with the enemy you can’t be surprised when they slit you throat as you sleep. They tried to get cosy and cuddly with the right, creeping, creeping away from the leftist principles. If this was a calculated move, it was a dumb one. National can survive Asset Sales, Treaty settlements, and so on. The Maori Party cannot and will not survive National.
Those who may have been concerned that National’s two term play date with Turia and Sharples was sacrilegious can rest easy. John Key has killed the Maori Party, or rather he supplied the noose with which the Maori party hung itself. Not only will this be good news to Key and his policy team, but to Colin Craig too. If National could drag even the Maori Party to the right, it will be every conservative’s wet dream if Key and Craig team up come 2014. Then the fun and games will truly start.
I haven’t had that much to think about over the holidays. Thinking isn’t a holiday task, but my brain has also been filled with the numbness of some strand of flu. In my flu-like delusion I often thought to myself: “I have never lived in a place this cold”. Later I found I’d lost the flu but kept the thoughts.
Let’s be honest, how do we live in such terrible conditions? People are wrong to think it is a ‘scarfie’ experience to live in such dreary conditions. I mean that we are able to is a feat in itself, but how can landlords get away with it? The funny thing is, I don’t even know my landlord but local legend says he owns around 70 flats in the city. A property manager is in charge of them. I can imagine them all being as cold, drafty and rickety as mine. Moreover, they are all probably as old as mine. Now, think about it, what do landlords do? Nothing. Trawl through the socialism when I say they have no right to treat us like they do, they either inherited or exploited money and now they keep on exploiting us students. My landlord last year, who rented out a cold hole in the centre of town, literally lived in Chicago half the year and cruised (in a real cruise ship!) to and from Dunedin, living in a perpetual summer. He told us this while we were signing the lease as if it were a normal way to lead a life. Meanwhile my flat had no heating. My flat this year has no heating either and there is a cold draft that runs through the corridor as if this were Siberia.
When I asked my property manager whether she would get some heating for us, she told us we should buy our own heaters. This is illegal.
We live in conditions they would not leave their kids in, and a small guess tells me the average landlord income per flat per month is close to $2000, with very few costs attached. Yet I have to pay for heating? There is something clearly wrong here in Dunedin, where landlords can get away with contracted theft, where they earn through exploitation, and where they could get money from the government if they decided they wanted to give some heating for the houses. I believe this ransacking should not be allowed, and I think it is the University’s and OUSA’s job to make sure it stops happening.
Last year the cry of O-c-c-u-p-y was heard across the city, this year we should take heed and take on non-violent action to have our voices heard.
There were two events that captured my attention over the semester break. One was very much in the public eye, dominating newspapers and televisions as it has done for most of the year. The second went by quietly, hardly being acknowledged beyond the country in which it was important. Funnily enough though, the one story may have a lesson to offer the other and, boy, does it need some teaching.
The first was Queen Elizabeth’s meeting (and shaking hands) with Martin McGuinness in Belfast, a truly historical occasion. McGuinness would no doubt be considered one of the villains of the late twentieth century in Britain. As a high level commander of the IRA he was responsible, directly or otherwise, for a number of deaths and even more injuries as his organisation embarked on a campaign of terror throughout the United Kingdom and Ireland. The second story that captured my attention was the, now critical, situation in Syria. How could it not? There is barely a soul on this planet who hasn’t heard of President Assad or witnessed the horrific images of his regime’s attempt to cling onto power.
Now you might think me stupid for suggesting that these two events have anything in common. On the one hand you have a despot, devoid of sentiment and drunk on power, systematically slaughtering his own people. On the other, you have attempts at reconciliation and building foundations for a prosperous friendship between to former enemies. That’s the lesson here, no matter how bad things get, the human capacity to love is far stronger than the one to hate. That is what the international community should be striving to show Assad, show him the good in humanity, show him that his way is the wrong way. He cannot grip onto power forever, and no matter how much damage he does, his people will find hope in the fact that there position is far stronger than his.
What’s more though is that the meeting in Belfast showed that we cannot be enemies forever. At one point we need to acknowledge our differences and move forward. That time is coming for Assad, the time where he will need to recognise that his people want democracy, they want freedom. Their hope for a brighter future is far stronger than his grip to power.
If you go through life with vengeance, hatred, greed and tyranny you are not long for this world. The human race has long outlasted characters like Assad. From Rwanda to World War II the human capacity to heal has shone through. So when we look at Syria let’s be sad in the knowledge that the very worst in mankind is on display, but let’s also be hopeful in the knowledge that the good will always win out. It is far easier to love than to hate. Once Assad realises this and steps aside his country will be able to heal. Until then, he should know that all through all the hurt and suffering, his people will endure, once they have outwitted him, he will not.
Second half. Will the Chiefs open up and run riot? or will the Landers slog back into it.
Bad start for the locals, Chiefs penalty out in front.
One Ball slots it, Chiefs 21 - 9 Landers
Noakes goes for a long shot penalty, but it is off to the right. Long shot Noakes is what we call him around here. Bring on Mike Delany, that's what GUs says
SMW jsut threw a punch and it is all on. If the touchie saw it, he should be off.
SBW totally lost his shit. Got to go ... ? Maybe, Refs are having a chat
Cruden just squirted Cruden with a water bottle. Cute.
Ref gave them a serious talking to, but he's staying on. Whatever they said to Sonny, he is really pissed off. Liam tried to calm him down and he shrugged him off
Landers crash over the line, Ref goes up stairs. SBW is still sweating bullets, Allah u Akbar Sonny.
Hore gets it, WELCOME TO THE HORE HOUSE BITCHES
Noakes misses, just not his night. Someone buy that man a snickers (Betty White reference)
Sam Cane on for Thompson (for the Chiefs, in case you were wondering. But you should know about Sam by now, he's an AB)
SBW creates something, ball spills, Gear nearly gets away with it down the field, called back for the knock on. Chiefs scrum, 10m out
Free kick Chiefs. They take the scrum, Hore gets lippy as they're setting it down. Chiefs get a penalty, One Ball will kick for goal from the 22m.
One Ball Misses it. Which in rugby means that the score stays the same.
Mike Delany is on, we might start getting some kicks.
Robbie R into a huge gap, great kick over the top, but landers manage to recover it.
Scrum to the Chiefs, 5m out. I feel like I keep saying that.
SBW, drinks water. Human after all.
Drunk obnoxious woman that is supporting the chiefs is , well, drunk and obnoxious. And fucking loud. Some poor bastard is married to her.
Exponents are playing. Wagon Wheel is gone. DJ is really testing the limits of his playlist.
Mexican wave attempt gets interupted by a great pop pass to Cruden.
Chiefs have been camped on the Landers line for a while now. But again, they repel the attack and gain the penalty. Delany bangs out an average kick to the Landers 10m line.
Delany straight up butchers catching the high ball. He actually fended it away with his forearms. It's not gladiators Mike.
Side to Side to side to side, you've got to feel sorry for the landers wingers. They never get the ball at pace, and never have any space to run into.
Poi E cranking after Thompson spills it forward and the players went a culturally sensitive rest.
Chiefs scrum, 5m out from the sideline, 15m out.
Chiefs make a great break led by RR, kicks ahead, Delany butchers it, Chiefs bowl over the line, Ref goes to the TMO.
Ref does not give the try, held up over the line. The cocky chiefs have to come trotting back from the half way line for the 5m scrum.
18 min to play, and Usher is cranking. More monkey club than rugby.
Landers infringe at the lineout (Thompson, naughty). Easy kick One Ball.
24 - 14 to the Chiefs. If they're going to win, can they just score some fucking awesome tries please.
SBW just takes it a step too far, fucks up, tries to offload behind himself, Landers get the ball back.
THIS HOW I ROLL ANIMAL PRINT PANTS OUT OF CONTROL. GIRL LOOK AT THAT BODY, LOOK AT THAT BODY.
I'M SEXY AS I KNOW IT: As Tamiti Ellison limps off the field with a serious looking lower leg injury. Buxton onto Fullback. Hours of entertainment that man.
Gus likes it when he lets the ball bounce, and know one knows where it's going.
Another penalty to the Chiefs, kickable for one ball. 12min to play. Landers need to turn this around quickly. But they won't.
One Ball slots it, 14-27 chiefs
9min to go, the landers are still trying at least, but there just aint any support when they break the chiefs line.
Tameifuna slams into a Lander without any arms, heading up towards his head. escapes punishment. Is taken off straight away by the managment, and he sticks it up the crowd as he leaves.
Fantastic passage for the landers finished off by Gear with a bashed over try, near the posts. some great quick switching ball there. Why haven't they played like that all night.
Kick Mike is good, and it is 21 - 27 to the chiefs, with 4 mins to play. Game on Chiefs.
AND THE DJ DROPS SOME SKRILLEX
Defensive bomb by the landers gets messily recovered, they have got to score a try somehow.
they're going to have to counter attack. Delany and Gear are keen to lead the charge.
Ref gives a bullshit penalty to the chiefs with the landers hot on attack, not game over, but making it harder and harder. Chiefs kick deep, if they recover they just need to hold the ball.
OH FUCK ME!!@ the landers claim the lineout, but the ref calls them for lifting early and gives the chiefs a scrum, 40 sec to play
Landers twist the scrum, and claim the ball back. Hooter sounds and time is up. Is it possible? Probably not. Prove me wrong landers. Prove me wrong.
Landers are ogingh to run from their own 12m they have to be crazy here
Fuck Buxton looks funny when he runs
the landers till have it. 2min past time.
they're making meters, just past the chiefs 10m line
landers going backwars with the ball
chiefs turn it over and bang it out. Game over, Chiefs take the win.
apparently the captain of the Chiefs is a guy called Craig Clark, who knew?
Highlanders on their way out, to those sweet sweet bagpipes. Wait, he just missed a note. What a shit cunt.
Game time. Yeah Rugby.
Landers recover the kick off and go side to side looking for a gap. Rucks 30m out.
Lost it, van Chiefs.
SBW waltzes into a massive gap left by the landers front row. An easy off load and Nanai-Williams dots down for the easiest try you'll see all year. nil 5 Chiefs
Cruden slots it. nil 7
Thompson recovers the kick off, Landers with a scrum on the Chiefs 22m, after A Smith ran into the ref.
Massive bomb from Noakes, achieves nothing, claimed 5m out. Landers have a good charge up, but bailed out. Chiefs lineout, 12m out from their line.
Penalty to the Landers, against SBW for not rolling away. Noakes from , I'm going to say, 45meters out, right to left.
Low, and left, Chiefs run it back.
Penalty Landers again, Noakes gets another shot. This time from 8m out. Me thinks he might get it.
He gets it, 3 - 7 chiefs
Terrible take by the Landers, everyone leaves it, Chiefs ball on the 22m
Knock on in there somewhere. Chiefs scrum, 12m out from the Landers line. Penalty Chiefs, 20m out. Easy one for one ball
One ball slots it. We wonder wether they gave him a prosthetic ball when they took his original one, or if his sack is lopsided. These are the big questions.
One Ball puts it out on the full. Landers lineout 35m out
Amazing oportunity for Hosea! Aaron chiped over, Hosea attempted to throw to the ball to himself to get it over the line. Scrum 5m out
Penalty 5m out, right on the line though. Ballsy Jamie goes for the lineout, 5m out for the Landers
Maul goes sideways, ruck 10m out
Really need to come away with some points from this
Huge fuck up. idiots. gave up playing to appeal to the Ref . Ref didnt' give a shit. Penalty to the Chiefs.
Great passage from the landers,
Landers seem to lack creativity, it's just hitting it up, hoping for a one off break, but when the get it, there is no support.
However, they get the penalty right out in front. Noakes will slot this for 6 -10 Chiefs
Shitty bit of ball handling by the chiefs, but they keep it.
huge goosey from One Ball goes nowhere. Penalty Chiefs, Middle of the field, on their 30m line
Chiefs lineout on the Landers 10m line
SBW cuts through the line and offloads beautifully, big bawling charge to the line, but desperate Landers defence by Gear puts them out
lineout on the Landers 5m line
Huge huge tackle by Jamie on Robbie Robinson. Eaten. You'll see that on CGW (Fuck you by the way Mark Richardson)
Landers with a good passage of Hosea break, he's having a good game but no support from anyone.
Fuck me there are some yokel fuckers here tonight. Did they just drive around Gore with a bring the whole clan ticket deal?
AB Ben Smith is keen to take it quickly, runs it up hard, Landers on the 10m line.
I'll say it now, the Ref is having a bit of a shit game. Scrum to the landers finally after a lot of Chiefs off their feet.
Music is playing, Michael Woodhouse will be unimpressed.
We've decided that Jason Rutledge is probably gay (he just looks like a bear), and wood giv eyou the roughest gay sex experience of your life. (any reference to Jason Rutledge is in relation to a fictional character and should not be taken as a reference to any real person named the same.
Pen to the Landers, and they get up to 9 - 10. Talk about fucking grinding it back.
I JUST MEET YOU! AND THIS IS CRAZY. BUT HERES MY NUMBER, SO CALL ME MABYE
Really DJ? Really?
Tighthead to the Landers, they either like Carly Rae, or they were angered by it. Either way it worked.
Having your facebook account open while you're at the rugby is really weird. and distracting when you're suposed to be blogging.
Landers are depriving the Chiefs of ball, but shit they look threatening when they get it.
Robbie Robinson on the business end of some quick hands. Try time.
All that hard grind by the Landers undone by the Chiefs holding the ball for 2min
9- 15 kick to come from One Ball
Off the right, score stays
Liam Messam makes a fucking meal of a very high ball from Ben Smith, scrum to the Landers, 35m out. 15sec to play
Chiefs very illegally strip the ball from the Landers runner, Chiefs back on attack with time up on the clock.. And the Chiefs get a penalty, very kickable with time up.
One Ball should slot this, taking the score to 9-18 at Half time.
Half time it is, 9 -18
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