We are pleased to support the Rethink911 campaign and have put up posters in the Capital City.
We have put 4 A1 size Rethink 911 posters on a pole on the Terrace near the Radio New Zealand building. This pole is also located very close to the Institution of Professional Engineers in Engineers House and also the New Zealand Fire Service and Union at no 80 The Terrace.
We have also put up 4 A1 posters on a pole on the busy street corner of Willis and Manners Street which is located near the Dominion Post office.
The dates the posters will be displayed will be Sunday 9 February to Sunday 16 February inclusive.
We have sent open letters to Radio New Zealand Open Letter to Radio New Zealand from NZ911truth and to the Dominion Post Open Letter to Dominion Post from NZ911truth asking the programmers and editors to cover Building 7 and the Rethink 911 campaign.
We will also hold our usual street action nearby to one of the poster locations. We will update you on any developments – Watch this space.
After 30 years of living and working together, Roger Morris and Marianne Muggeridge have collaborated in “Mid-life Retrospective: Portraits, Landscapes and 911”, a show at the Percy Thomson Gallery in Stratford, Taranaki in March this year. Morris and Muggeridge live and work in a home-studio custom built by them in 1988-90, at the upper end of Oeo Road, South Taranaki, very close to the Mountain. Their work chronicles their lives there, and a just ended 11 year stint in Willis St. Wellington, as fulltime artists and parents, often featuring daughters Lucy and Myfanwy, and now granddaughter Azra.
Christchurch lecturer loses job when
scientific “web of deceit” is unraveled.
In a joint announcement in London on January 22, the Royal Entomological Society and the British Arachnological Society have announced what many biologists have long suspected: that spiders are just a type of insect and not a separate species.
Professor of entomology Benjamin Siegel was joined on stage by arachnologist Professor Peter Parker for a press conference at the London Natural History Museum. Professor Parker, in an emotional speech, said that while it was difficult for him personally to “climb down from a web of deceit”, he thought it was “best for science” to admit that arachnology was “junk science”, and to rationalise the study of spiders, incorporating the study of all of “God’s creepy crawly creatures” into the more respectable field of entomology.
“It’s something that has been bugging me for the last six or eight years, I forget which. I started getting this tingling sensation when I read about the secret of the origin of arachnology…” At that point, Professor Parker became too emotional to continue, with his appearance also beginning to alter slightly. Professor Siegel quickly took the microphone while Professor Parker was rushed offstage.
“What Professor Parker was referring to was the foundation not only of the separate branch of ‘arachnology’, but the compartmentalisation of academia in general led by Thomas Henry Huxley. Mr Huxley is remembered today as the grandfather of Aldous and Julian Huxley, but in his day, he was best known as a great promoter of Sir Charles Darwin and his theory of evolution. In fact, he was known as ‘Darwin’s bulldog‘. Actually, he looked a lot like a bulldog, but that may have been from, uh, shall we say, a certain lack of, erm, genetic diversity in the Huxley bloodline.”
Professor Siegel went on to explain that in the wake of budget cuts, a dramatic increase in arachnophobia statistics, and the need to popularise the study of science, the latest academic thinking is that the dangerous trend of over-specialisation in scientific fields needs to end. The new trend is to combine fields where possible, pooling budgets and thereby gaining synergy and better cooperation among scientists in closely related fields. “As for insects and spiders, they have more DNA in common than neanderthals and homo sapiens,” he explained. “You don’t have a separate branch of science for humans with polydactyly, do you? It’s a distinction without a difference. Plus, we don’t want to miss important discoveries by not talking to each other, like when the CIA and FBI didn’t talk to each other before 9/11. Look what happened there.”
At that point, Professor Siegel took some questions from reporters on the scene. Celebrity reporter Glynnis Gruenforest of the PayPal funded News Source Alliance (NSA) asked, “But what about the different numbers of legs that bugs and spiders has? Doesn’t spiders have about 10 legs at least?”
Professor Siegel patiently explained that insects have 6 legs and two antennae, and spiders have 8 legs. “But, the top two legs of spiders evolved from antennae, so spiders are just a mutated form of insects. There is now a scientific consensus that this mutation occurred during the meteor crash that killed off all the dinosaurs 65 million years ago. Computer models now prove that there was significant radioactivity in the meteor that caused that particular mutation. It also caused the two top body lobes to partially fuse and to start secreting radioactive webs with which they were able to catch unsuspecting bugs, er, insects.”
Professor Siegel admitted that this rationalisation of scientific disciplines could result in job losses in academia. In Christchurch, prominent science “communicator” Dr Simon “Spidey” Pollard has just been pink-slipped by his employer, Canterbury University. Doctor Pollard said he was “shocked but not surprised” at the double whammy of losing his job and losing his beloved specialty, the popularisation of spiders, but he was most indignant at having to read about his dismissal on the Internet.
“And and you know it’s very interesting I happened to online read an article this morning umm actually the Guardian has been doing lots of articles on this and you know people just look for patterns where there just aren’t any and the thing was it was all a conspiracy and we just can’t help it cos our brains are just wired that way when it sends messages to the amigdyla and then it sends messages to other parts of the brain to start analysing flat out what’s going on. And you know those entomology guys are all out to get me cos you know they’re just jealous of my pop… my success and it’s like what do they have? They just have bugs. Bugs! And nobody wants to be a fly even if Hollywood did like nine remakes of The Fly but who cares and so what if Howard Shore wrote an opera about The Flies and wasn’t the Lord of the Flies himself a, a kind of a dysutopian? But spiders cos they’re aspirational are cool and who wouldn’t want to be Spiderman and yeah no there’s even SpiderPig on the Simpsons so even pigs want to be spiders. Our brains are just wired that way.”
Canterbury University spokesman Ali Oxford Frei apologised to Dr Pollard for the communication failure. He said, “We apologise to Dr Pollard if the communication failure caused him any emotional anguish or uncontrolled outbursts of run-on sentences. But it was a cockup, not a conspiracy. Dr Pollard was out of town doing his job of science communication when we were trying to reach him. He was reading ‘My Pet Spider‘ to a group of school children in Invercargill. We attempted to contact Dr Pollard a couple of times, but we had a deadline for the evening news cameras, so we just couldn’t wait to release the news. His driver whispered something in his ear, but he just kept on reading that dam…, excuse me, darned book, looking like a deer in the headlights.”
Radio New Zealand issued a statement when asked by RadioActive about Doctor Pollard’s future on the Nine To Noon programme as their “science commentator”, saying that they are “currently seeking other science commentating opportunities”. A popular weekday morning host spoke to RadioActive under condition of anonymity. She said, “Now that Simon has gone all conspiracy theory on us, we just don’t have a slot for him. I mean, it’s kinda oxymoronic, isn’t it? The science of conspiracy theories? Yeah, Simon was just getting to be too edgy. I think maybe he was all stressed out dealing with his conspiracy theory that turned out to be true, just like 9/11, I mean, Watergate. Anyway, listeners were complaining that Simon wasn’t soothing enough. Hmm, maybe now we should get John Hawkesby back.”
But while this downpour of bad news may have temporarily washed Dr Pollard out, he has plans to climb the water spout of success again with not one, but two sequels to his popular book, “I Am Spider“. He has already begun work on a memoir dealing with his struggle with cognitive dissonance in the face of the massive Entomology Department conspiracy against him. In his memoir, Doctor Pollard will finally come out of the closet as a fully metamorphosed conspiracy theorist. “Yeah no I’m sorta umm well it’s like that phoney love doctor guy, you know, Charlie Veitch, only in reverse,” he confessed. His upcoming memoir, “I Am Buggered“, will tell the inside story of his now public conflict with envious colleagues who conspired against him, as well as his own inner conflict with cognitive dissonance.
He refused to reveal details of the other book he’s working on but did hint to one reporter, “Well, you know there’s like this hierarchy thing in nature and and spiders you know umm eat bugs cos their brains are just wired that way and yeah no cos obviously they’re nutritional.” A spokeswoman for celebrity chef, Nigella Lawson, refused to comment on reports that she is collaborating with Doctor Pollard on a new book that one insider says is “simply crawling” with entomophagically themed recipes. The book is rumoured to have a working title of “Nigella Does Entomophagic Magic!“, but Doctor Pollard is said to be holding out for a title more recognisable as a sequel to his previous books, “I Eat Bugs“.
OPINION: Afganistan remains a dismal country after 12 years of Western occupation. A United Nations report finds that it is once again becoming a narco-state, with a huge rise in opium poppy cultivation. Corruption is rampant. The Karzai Government controls only a small part of the country. Torture is widely used. The Western intervention in Afghanistan, in which New Zealand played an important role, comes to a dismal end.
The invasion of the country after September 11 was justified and New Zealand was right to back it. The Taliban Government was sheltering Al Qaeda, the terrorist group which had committed the outrage in New York. The United States and its Western partners were justified in responding.
Read the rest of the article here
Thursday, 19 December 2013, 10:12 am
Press Release: New Zealand Government
Hon Murray McCully
Minister of Foreign Affairs
Hon Dr Jonathan Coleman
Minister of Defence
19 December 2013
NZ to maintain support as Afghanistan mission transitions
New Zealand will maintain its current level of support for international efforts in Afghanistan until December 2014, the Government says.
Twenty seven New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel are currently deployed in behind-the-wire roles based in Kabul, including at the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) headquarters, ISAF Special Operations Forces headquarters, and Afghan National Army Officer Academy (ANAOA).
“The Government has reviewed the mandate for these deployments, which is due to expire next April. Our 27 personnel will remain in Afghanistan to December 2014 to support the final stages of the ISAF mission,” Defence Minister Jonathan Coleman says.
The ISAF mission will be replaced by a training, advice and assistance mission.
“As previously announced, a small number of personnel are expected to remain at the UK-led Afghan National Army Officer Academy (ANAOA) in roles focused on training assistance and capacity building beyond 2014,” Dr Coleman says.
Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully says New Zealand’s work in Afghanistan is business as usual.
“New Zealand remains committed to fulfilling our role as part of the ISAF mission to secure the gains made in Afghanistan over the last decade.
“New Zealand will continue to make financial and development contributions to Afghanistan. The nature of those contributions has not been finalised.”
A backpacker coming home for Christmas had every bit of electronic equipment stripped from him at the airport.
A Customs officer at Auckland International Airport took law graduate Sam Blackman’s two smartphones, iPad, an external hard drive and laptop – and demanded his passwords.
Mr Blackman, 27, who was breaking up travelling with his journalist fiance Imogen Crispe for a month back in New Zealand for Christmas, was initially given no reason why the gear was taken.
The only possibility of why it occurred was his attendance – and tweeting – of a London meeting on mass surveillance sparked by the Snowden revelations, he said.
However, a Customs official has since told him they were searching everything for objectionable material under the Films, Videos, and Publications Classification Act 1993.
Mr Blackman said he did not have anything of that nature and could not understand why he had been targeted.
Mr Blackman arrived in Auckland at 5.30am on a flight from Heathrow, travelling through San Francisco.
He declared loose-leaf tea he was carrying as he came through Customs and believed that was responsible for the extensive bag search to which he was subjected.
“He said ‘we’re not worried about the tea’,” Mr Blackman said of the Customs’ official.
The official then returned to going through the bag, pulling out electronic equipment as he did so. “We’re going to have to detain this,” Mr Blackman said he was told. “We’re going to have to send this to a forensic investigator.”
Mr Blackman said when he pulled a phone out of his pocket, the official also took that, refusing permission for him to call his parents who were waiting in the arrival lounge.
He said he was also told to provide passwords for the equipment. “That is a real invasion of privacy.”
One of the phones had no password but required a design to be traced on the screen. The official was unconcerned and said the forensic team would defeat security to access the device, Mr Blackman claimed.
He said he asked why the items were being confiscated and the official refused to say – or to say how long the items would be kept.
Earlier, Mr Blackman said he thought it may have occurred because of his attendance at the London meeting on mass surveillance.
In November, Mr Blackman and Ms Crispe attended a meeting at the Royal Institute of British Architects attended by Guardian editor Alan Rusbridger, MPs from across Europe, and spokespeople from groups opposing spying.
A Customs’ spokeswoman refused to discuss Mr Blackman’s case. She said passengers considered “high risk”received attention at the airport. She also said Customs officials were required to have “reasonable cause”to believe an offence had been committed.
“Information or data may be used as evidence of an offence or may be a prohibited item such as objectionable images.”
TechLiberty director Thomas Beagle said the seizure of phones and laptops was a “major interference in your life”in the modern world.
He said Customs law had a pre-digital focus which, when applied to the technical age, did not take into account the amount of personal information or the frequency of use.
“What does this mean for other people? You really have to consider what you take over the border.”
Mr Beagle said his understanding of the law was that travellers did not have to surrender their passwords.
However, he said it meant it was likely the device of interest would then not be allowed into the country.
An open letter to Kathryn Ryan
National Radio is widely regarded by intelligent, educated citizens as a treasure, to be protected at all costs against cheap commercialization. Coverage of contentious topics such as global warming by radio talkback hosts is invariably slanted and superficial, to the point where it is a moot question as to whether it constitutes journalism at all.
It was therefore a great disappointment that the interview you conducted with Dr. Simon Pollard on Wednesday November 20th fell far short of the high journalistic standards one has come to expect of National Radio.
The interview was entitled “Science with Simon Pollard”, but where was the science? As a retired science teacher I would have expected some presentation of evidence for the assertions made. In that way, listeners could use their brains to come to their own conclusions — rather than have their thinking done for them — as is so often the case in the corporately owned mass media.
But no. Dr. Pollard made a number of statements that positively invited cross-examination, but instead you uncritically agreed with him. Although Dr. Pollard’s comments related mainly to the Kennedy assassination, he did make a number of references to 911 — about which I know quite a lot. The tone of his comments was disparaging and condescending, and to those of us who have researched 911 in depth, they were insulting.
At this stage, I hope it is simply the case that you have been guilty of nothing more than uncritically accepting the explanation put out by the corporate media. In this respect, I was taken in too, until my son showed me his copy of The New Pearl Harbor by David Ray Griffin. The Foreword caught my attention because it was by Richard Falk, Professor Emeritus of International Law at Princeton University. It seemed to me that the book he was endorsing was at least worth a second look, so I began to read. In book, Prof. Griffin presents detailed evidence that the official explanation for the events of 911 cannot be true. His nine later books add even more evidence, all of it in the public domain and fully referenced.
Professor Griffin is but one of a large number of academics and other professionals round the world, who have called for a new and independent inquiry (Phillip Zelikow, who ran the 911 Commission Inquiry, was closely linked to the White House). I’m sure you’d agree that people in such high positions are unlikely to be crackpots. Therefore, we should at least pay attention to what they have to say, rather than uncritically accepting put-downs by an arachnologist. In the spirit of the scientific method, we should study the evidence for ourselves.
In dismissing those who are skeptical of the official explanation for 911, Dr. Pollard used the put-down term ‘conspiracy theorist’, a term that was first introduced into the public lexicon by the CIA after doubts were raised about the Warren Commission Report into the Kennedy assassination.
A democracy can only survive if its citizens are informed and, above all, free to question government accounts of events. A fundamental prerequisite for this is the existence of untrammelled, independent media. For National Radio to fulfill this requirement, intelligent listeners who present reasoned argument against orthodoxy should not be dismissed without giving them an opportunity to present evidence in support of their concerns.
There is another aspect to this, which may not have occurred to you. There are people in the National and Act parties who are itching to privatize National Radio. This would be a tragedy, for we would then have descended to the same level as characterizes commercial broadcasting in the United States. If the extinction of quality, independent radio does loom, we can be sure that the strongest argument will come from those who fear that the treatment of political issues will be limited to sound bites by ‘talking heads’. As Noam Chomsky famously said:
“The smart way to keep people passive and obedient is to strictly limit the spectrum of acceptable opinion, but allow very lively debate within that spectrum”.
I hope that your interview with Simon Pollard is not an indication that we have already arrived at such a state of affairs without the assistance of the National Government.
Martin Hanson, retired science teacher
Colin Craig not sure man walked on moon
NBR Staff | Wednesday December 04, 2013
The leader of New Zealand’s fastest-rising political party, Colin Craig, says he’s not sure man walked on the moon and hasn’t even ruled out conspiracy theories about the 2011 terrorist attacks in the United States.
On a radio show this morning, Mr Craig says he doesn’t have time to look into these matters and it’s not a priority for him – his priorities are making sure New Zealanders have jobs, houses and can succeed.
Less than a year out from a general election, and with National’s coalition partners ACT and United Future having their own issues, the Conservatives are being touted as a potential coalition partner for Prime Minister John Key’s party.
Read full article here