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Our Confused World

Filed under: General — Downunder @ 11:27 am Tue 9th November 2021

Thoughts on our ‘Confused World’.

In the Meditationes Sacrae (1597) by Sir Francais Bacon he says “knowledge itself is power”.

In our view of the world today we could look at that and agree that possession of knowledge, restrictions on knowledge, censorship, selective release, or interpretation play a major role in our political and personal authority.

Our modern mainstream media in their mimicry of this pattern with ‘Breaking News’ and ‘What We Know So Far’ are inclined to propaganda rather than journalism.

In the context of that period of history rather than our own it is possible if not probable that in a more cooperative age of men what he intended held a different meaning.

Progress emanates from knowledge, the transmission of knowledge and the sharing of knowledge.

That as I see it is or was the primary goal of the internet.

It has been the cornerstone of professional reputation. A means of influence in which we can place trust but see marginalised with confusion replacing clarity.

When we move away from the concept of, power to act, and the right of authority and control, especially total cooperation or enforced cooperation there is an area of collective cooperation.

Looking at the power to progress there is a question of influence and what part knowledge plays in that influence or the ability to influence and the reason to influence.

And of course the influence that is used in terms of financial reward and personal progress.

It is an essential part of democracy but throughout my entire political experience I have noticed increasingly it has become a subversive process rather than a reasoned process.

In our social climate there is an appeal to authority through the concept of knowledge, “We all know’.

The effect of this is a censorship on critical thinking, a call to obedience and the power to attack those who in a confused world apply some degree of critical thinking regardless of their qualification to do so or their expertise in any discipline.

For the man in the street that can translate to beliefs, a cause to fight for or radicalism and a cause to die for in obedience.

Knowledge in this respect can be weaponised beyond adhominem being a destructive process rather than a productive process.

Knowledge becomes essential beyond itself and fashions not only progress but the rate of progress (or not) and is an essential ingredient in the way that we relate to each other as individuals, families, communities, professionally or in an amateur setting and politically.

This determines not only our society but the strength and security of that social setting and in essence it’s future path … a pre-determined destiny … how we might treat each other in the future; possibly in a worse way than we do now.


  1. Copied from today’s Herald

    “ One of New Zealand’s most well-known economists, Cameron Bagrie, has delivered a searing rebuke to the National Party, saying they’re stuck in a “historical mindset”.

    Bagrie was ANZ’s former chief economist, but now runs his own independent economics consultancy.

    “I think New Zealand is stronger when we have two strong mainstream parties, even under MMP.

    “We get more contestability, better genuine policy debate and accountability. We simply do not have that at present,” Bagrie said.

    “The world we live in is changing rapidly. Disruption is everywhere, economically, the enduring impact of Covid, the environment, technology and changes in social values.

    “It does not matter where you look; at businesses, households, individuals, change and adapting to change is the new normal. The same applies to every political party. The Nats look stuck in a very historical mindset,” he said.

    Although he is not a party member, Bagrie has spoken at National Party conferences as an independent economist, giving a snapshot of the economic landscape and joining panel discussions with the party’s economic portfolio holders: Paul Goldsmith, at the 2019 conference, and Andrew Bayly and Michael Woodhouse at the 2021 conference.

    Bagrie was speaking out after growing frustration that the party had lost sight of important issues, which he said was bad for politics as a whole.

    “It puzzles me why a political party does not go harder on education. Or maybe it is just in the too-hard basket? But NZ’s future in 30 years is partially dependent on the education system and outcomes today. The signs are not great,” he said.

    Bagrie argued that politics had neglected the balance that needs to exist between social issues, like wellbeing, and the economic base that needs to exist to fund programmes that drive wellbeing.

    Cameron Bagrie, managing director at Bagrie Economics, said National has a mindset that is stuck in the past.

    “For decades we have swung from the economic ledger to the social ledger and back and forth,” Bagrie said.

    “We need better balance and a data dictated, well-executed policy prescription down the middle. Wellbeing needs an economic base just as the economic base is dependent on wellbeing including housing and education outcomes,” he said.

    He warned that tough economic choices were coming down the pipeline, warning the age of “sugar candy economics” needed to end.

    “The Government has done really well supporting the economy by running expansionary fiscal policy and spending money.

    “But that sugar candy economics does not deliver an enduring economic base wellbeing is dependent upon,” he said.

    Parliament returns from a one-week recess on Tuesday. Changes to Parliament’s Covid-19 rules means that more Auckland and Waikato MPs are likely to return to the city this week.”

    It does state what has been clear since January this year if not before that education is definitely an election issue.

    Comment by Evan Myers — Tue 9th November 2021 @ 1:47 pm

  2. Downunders comment.

    “Our modern mainstream media in their mimicry of this pattern with ‘Breaking News’ and ‘What We Know So Far’ are inclined to propaganda rather than journalism.”

    I think that just happened, in the Collins event.


    The one sided, look at money.
    It is very human.
    Fighting over money.
    And who pays.

    It does mention male victims, once.
    We have heard this before.

    “Financial abuse researcher Dr Ayesha Scott says women are the most common victims of economic harm and abuse, but there are men who fall victim to it as well.”

    Obviously the “women are the most common victims of economic harm” is fantasy.
    The one comment about the male victims.
    After falsely claiming harm, the males a minor problem.
    Only female stories, told.

    What research is the doctor looking at.
    If females mostly get the house.
    They will mostly get the power bill.
    100% certain that paternity fraud, isn’t included.
    In any calculations.
    Or going into bank accounts, stealing money.
    Female stealthing, child support scams.
    If living in the car is his only option.
    With all his financial burdens.
    Should he have nowhere to live.

    Matrimonial property decisions should sort these issues out.
    But they don’t.
    Due to the enormous cost of litigation.
    If it costs $10,000 to argue in court.
    Why argue.

    No new law, seeking retribution, will help.
    Again you will need a lawyer.
    Inherently it becomes a matrimonial property decision.
    So why argue.

    Is there no small claims court in NZ.
    Can one not be set up, for this issue.
    With low court costs.
    Judge Judy like.

    How much domestic violence, is related to this issue.
    Men and women fighting over money, and things.
    Leading up to, and after the relationship ends.

    Making another thing a crime, solves nothing.
    It would criminalise every transaction, in a relationship.

    Social service providers, and lawyers, will do well.

    Comment by DJ Ward — Fri 26th November 2021 @ 11:19 am

  3. Not exactly what you would call propaganda.

    Collins released a leader statement which was reported in good faith.

    Given what was reported in the ODT this morning the Board couldn’t realistically consider anything but her departure.

    Comment by Evan Myers — Fri 26th November 2021 @ 3:53 pm

  4. Sometimes it’s not until the end, that you get context.
    The writers final comment, and start as well.

    “For who hasn’t been Jacqui Dean, a woman thrown under the bus.”
    That is to say that, males don’t exist.
    That they don’t get thrown under the bus.
    Was that not Bridges experience.

    “What he should have said was that they were sexist and demeaning.”
    How is that a resultant.

    “He was making a vulgar – and not even very funny – joke about sex with his wife.”
    It was a joke about conception.
    Anything about conception and women is banned.
    Feminists hate the subject, if a man says anything.

    “Do you say nothing, and laugh, joke around like “one of the boys.””
    What about all the jokes about men and sex.
    The girly coffee table, useless men jokes.

    “But Dean says “it continued to play on her mind.””
    Lots of bad male examples, given.
    Why then don’t they name all the women, who slept with Ross.
    If women were only judged, by the same standards.

    So the author reveals the source.
    “ It’s what Auckland University psychology professor Nicola Gavey calls the “cultural scaffolding of rape”, or what the “It’s Not OK” campaign refers to as a “social tolerance for violence.””
    An author that views males as unrapeable.
    So unlikely to have read a FTP case.
    Or a BPD compulsive liar case.
    The Not OK campaign, that excludes male issues completely.

    The truth, the opposite to the source.
    Sexual crimes against men are normalised, in culture.
    To the extreme.
    It is not that misogyny, does not exist.
    But it’s not a rape culture, towards women.
    The joke was about sex, not rape.


    What are men going to be banned from doing next.

    Comment by DJ Ward — Fri 26th November 2021 @ 5:30 pm

  5. The economy, is confusing.

    Government debt, 100 billion.
    Private debt, 340 billion.
    Or about $90,000 per human.
    $360,000 for a family of four.
    Or $18,000 a year in interest, at 5%.

    And growing.

    New Zealand household debt accounted for 97.6 % of the country’s Nominal GDP in Dec 2020, compared with the ratio of 95.1 % in the previous quarter.
    No wonder house values, are rising.
    Plus more government borrowing.

    So what are the indicators, things may be going wrong.

    Employment figures look good.
    Obviously large increase in state employment, helps.
    So some hiding, of reality.
    Debt financed, the increase in employment.

    GDP is down.
    So next year should see less tax.
    We see more tax, due to large government spending.
    From the year before, trickling back.
    Inherently getting more, clipping its own ticket.
    Opening of tourism, will be a big bonus on the plus side.

    Rents are up, so less for people to spend.
    Petrol is up, so less discretionary spending.
    Mortgage rates are up, so less for people to spend.
    Debt is up, so less spending to finance it.
    Many things, cost much more.
    With much of that, not having GST.

    Wage inflation, can increase spending.
    Then costs rise, to cover the wage rise.
    Increasing tax, allowing more government spending.
    Then due to the increased costs, another pay rise needed.

    Due to debt, the government must inevitably control spending.
    IE when the stimulus stops, it’s revenue will fall.

    Inflation causes investors to want real things.
    Property, shares, and things like gold.
    Who would want near zero % bonds.
    Or experience money devaluation, in a bank deposit.

    Investors will demand interest, better than inflation.
    Or nobody, will want to lend money.

    Financing things becomes more difficult.
    How does the builder price work, even 6 months out.
    And how is finance approved, without a price.

    Something will give.
    We are yet to see large numbers, of mortgages.
    Refinance with the new, higher interest rates.
    Even the next increase, and the next increase.
    More and more, will be demanded from stagnant incomes.

    Or more debt as policy, it has to work.

    Comment by DJ Ward — Thu 16th December 2021 @ 7:25 pm

  6. Anything could happen, in a state of confusion.
    All you need to know, is how imagination can work.

    And I have written a new letter, that asks for nothing.
    The reader, cannot unread something.

    A few days of fine tuning are needed, as this can only happen once.
    It’s is short enough, to entice the reader.

    Some time for logistics, and a little to harden my resolve.
    Then humans, will do what humans do.

    Comment by DJ Ward — Tue 8th February 2022 @ 6:55 pm

  7. It is definitely interesting times, with inflation.
    So one must look at the issue, for its positives.
    We can use the US as an example, as it’s got lots of debt.

    So we can’t actually avoid global inflation, if basic commodity prices rise.
    Every country pays more for its energy, then also increasing product prices.
    Some of course, now make fortunes if they extract energy.

    If our money is linked, to a devalued US dollar due to its inflation.
    When it falls in value, ours increases in value.
    Our products then cost more, to the US buyer.

    A method of getting rid of debt is inflation, even for the homeowner.
    If the US owes thirty trillion, then has 100% inflation over time.
    The debt in real terms, becomes fifteen trillion.

    A government borrowing, during high inflation.
    Will pay lots for the money, due to interest rates.
    So spending during inflation, is an expensive option.

    If commodity creation is stable, then per person real wealth should be stable.
    One just has to experience the lag, for wage inflation.
    The government also with increased costs, and lag on income.

    So an indebted government that controls spending, can do well with inflation.
    One that can’t control spending, can spiral out of control.
    And many nations, have failed with inflation.

    The US has failed to control spending, for a long time.

    There are many nations, to compare our currency against.
    There is just as many, as we can trade with.
    And I do not see NZ, as fortress NZ with business.

    We are about as free trade, as any nation.
    Our flaw is diversity of trade, and high exposure to few nations.
    As well as our isolation, from markets.

    If you make nothing, then you have nothing to sell.
    You can make a tree, and sell the log.
    Or make luxury carpentry, and sell that.

    More open trade, may actually help little.
    If things made, are still sold as basic commodities.
    Instead of looking at others for help, it is ourselves that must improve.

    Comment by DJ Ward — Wed 16th March 2022 @ 9:58 pm

  8. I some weeks ago watched, the President of Ukraine speak.
    First seeing it on the BBC or Fox News, so there edit of the speech.
    I then watched, RT present the same interview.
    I can see why, the lady had the protest sign on live news.
    While many women flee for refuge, and the men hide or face the enemy.
    Yet a woman, is as brave as any other.

    “Stop the war. Don’t believe the propaganda. They’re lying to you,” Marina Ovsyannikova’s sign read.

    Three emotions.
    Peace, Biased, and Deceitful.

    She says it all really, in one placard.
    And does as much, as the gun or missile.
    It is truthful that the gun and missile, causes great harm.
    But if one is biased and deceitful, the truth is also the enemy.
    How then can you watch the news, now cynical of it.

    I certainly want peace, and Russia could offer reasonable terms.
    If not then based on weapons Ukraine is getting, it will be a costly war.
    And as the lady protestor knew, war is about the will of the people.
    Even the will of the soldiers, is at stake.
    But this is not 1939, the propaganda absolute.
    The paper published, by those in power.
    While the tyrant demands control, of everything.
    Each human, has there device and google.
    Would the ardent Russian, find some western propaganda.
    The Russian version believed without question, so anything else is lies.

    If they read the sign, will they seek information to find out.
    Just as I saw propaganda, so will the enquiring mind.
    First they will disagree sternly, and refuse to believe.
    Then they will recognise the argument, but still not support it.
    Finally they will accept, a new version of the truth.

    Did humans not learn, that the factory won the war.
    There is millions of humans in Ukraine, and factories making things.


    I play World Of Tanks, so each tank has its own performance.
    I wonder how the M1 Abrams, crewed by Ukraine soldiers would go.
    Even worse for tanks, some A10s Ukraine piloted.

    Russia is limited, by its economic isolation.
    The west is limited, by its imagination.
    War is limited, by time and distance.

    The more time used, is irrelevant to time.
    As there is plenty more, to finish the task of delay.
    Even a mile gained, leaves hundreds more.

    Comment by DJ Ward — Thu 17th March 2022 @ 11:02 pm

  9. I think that underestimating the tyrants resolve, is a mistake.
    While he may have 100,000 conscripts, many more have served time.

    It is a well thought out article, worth reading.

    I agree Ukraine acting offensively, seems unlikely.
    But part of delay, is many little attacks.
    An army in a column probing, can always be cut off by force.

    Putin now fills the stadium with his ego, him the savour of Russia.
    Even if 10,000 soldiers have died, it is but a few to the tyrant.
    From the crowds will be volunteers, trained already by conscription.

    Yet again young men, will squander lives at the front.
    Do they not see that he celebrates the death of men, with nobody saved.
    Serving the country, when actually they serve his demands.

    How well then does the tyrant take, being forced into peace.

    Comment by DJ Ward — Mon 21st March 2022 @ 8:40 pm

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