Throw the pin!!


Our morning routine during the week goes something like wake around 0610, jug on…shower, dress etc…breakfast and a cuppa in front of TV1’s Breakfast show – really the only morning show in town plus it has an onscreen clock for those that need to be out the door by a certain time each morning…

Some issues were discussion this morning that I thought worthy of further comment…

The Gilmore GrenadeAaron-Gilmore-national-6_w452

A couple of weeks back, lowest listed National Party MP, Aaron Gilmore, lipped off at the staff in a bar in Hamner Springs when they refused to serve him. Although he denies it, accounts from staff and others in his party (dobbed by your buds, Aaron!!)  confirm that he threatened to get the Prime Minister to fire the staff member in question. Like, y’know, the PM just sits around like some sort of political Gargamel waiting to smite down any who dare to oppose his lowliest listed MP…

I’d never heard of this clown until the week before when he ‘starred” (not in the positive sense of the word) on Backbenchers, a local political talk-back session that screens every Wednesday night after Strike Back…which is not to say that I am a big fan of Strike Back or anything else derived from Chris Ryan but we have taken a bit of a shine to Elementary which screens just before it…A bit of a shine? Nah, let’s be honest about it – I prefer it over the overhyped pretension of Sherlock and the buffoonery of Robert Downey’s big screen Holmes AND it’s got not only a female Watson as a nice bit of contemporisation but it’s Lucy Liu who could also be described simply as a ‘nice bit’…

Anyway…back to clown boy…the topic for discussion that night was the passage of the same sex marriage act and the National Party representative aka clown boy was clearly unprepared and tried to bluster his way through the discussion – really he should just have had another pint and slid quietly under the table. So, it wasn’t really any surprise when news broken on his antics in Hamner Springs the following week. Since then we’ve all gotten to watch the Aaron Show as he has denied, apologised, denied again…I think it was a caller on Radio Live that suggested that the following night, Gilmore should have fronted at the bar, apologised (sincerely) to everyone and tossed a couple of grand on the bar…

Last night he announced his resignation from Parliament to a big sigh of relief from everyone – who says that the parties can not agree unanimously on anything? – but promising utu (revenge or payback) on ‘those responsible in his final speech today…while we all wait with baited breath to learn the contents of the Gilmore grenade today, my only advice to Clown Boy is “Throw the pin, Aaron!!

Just get on with it now…2727_auckland-convention-centre-bid-skycity

Before the 2011 election the Government announced its plans to create a national convention centre in central Auckland in partnership with Sky Casino – all the usual haters fired up at the time but now that Government has announced details of this project and the specifics of the relationship with the casino. Essentially, the casino will fund the construction of the convention centre – a projected cost around $420 million – in return for concessions to expand its number of pokie machines and gaming tables, and for some guarantee of protection from future anti-gaming legislation.

All the haters are in full cry again now, having squandered the last year and a half in which they could have sought to block the project. I’m not a big fan of gambling but I also don’t think that a few more pokie machines and gaming tables in the centre of Auckland is going to rip the fabric of the space-time continuum, certainly not when these and other forms of gambling continue to flourish across the country. If the Greens and Labour whiny-haters really wanted to do something about this, then instead of wasting the period from the flash of the initial announcements in 2011 to the bang of the confirmations this week, they could/should have:

Come up with their own plan for funding the construction of the convention centre – no-one really seems to think that this is a bad idea – noting the country is kinda broke due to the unforeseen need to rebuild a major city from scratch.

Developed their own comprehensive AND practical plan for reducing access to to gambling systems and machines across the country – including Lotto and the good old TAB.

Realised that there is more to be in opposition than just attacking everything that the Government does – the continual bleating from David Shearer, the ‘leader’ of the Opposition is just irritating – we might as well bring back Winston Peters: at least he’s entertaining and, funnily enough, was canny enough to include an anti-pokie stand in his manifesto for the 2011 election…

Nutty is as nutty does…
Nutty-Assault

Apparently, in a fit of rampant nannystatism, schools are Australia are banning nuts from school lunches to protect those with nut-based allergies…I kid you not!! Is this a clear case of schools abdicating themselves of even more responsibility when, if there ever was something that kids need some education on, it is dealing with potentially lethal conditions like this…wrapping them in nanny state cotton wool will only prepare them LESS for the real world…

And speaking of things in the real world…

Tossed

x-47B-inflight

An interesting hype piece X-47B UCAS Launches the Next Era of Naval Aviation popped up on the FB feed this morning – and that’s all it is, more X-47 hype.

You can launch a 40 foot container off the end of a US Nimitz-class aircraft carrier so tossing an X-47 off the pointy end of a carrier is not really an achievement in itself. The real achievement and major step ahead for naval aviation will come when an X-47 lands autonomously on the blunt end of an aircraft carrier, catching the ‘3’ wire and all that other good Maverick stuff (will be be equipped for the mandatory post-mission high fives?), as the business of carrier aviation goes on around it – so long as some dodgy Chinese fiend doesn’t pop an electromagnetic pulse just as the UAV commits to landing on the deck – maybe there should be an extra Phalanx under the ramp – just in case…?

Please, don’t get me wrong…I think that the technology going into the X-47 programme is way cool and probbaly heard the next full generational of unmanned aviation but…please…stop with the endless hype…

PS…if you want to have a credible blog site, Navy Live, grow a set and stop moderating your comments…

Lost?

COA airspace map with Deming removed

How appropriate that the air port inside the Flight Test Center Airspace is Truth or Consequences Airport? Maybe we could have one called Put up of Shut Up?

Inside the drone economy discusses US plans to establish six UAS test flight areas within the continental UAS, and the current battle between the states to acquire one of these potentially lucrative areas. I just wonder, with our relatively clear and open airspace, domestically and over the big blue thing, whether we have lost an opportunity in attracting UAS-related technologies to New Zealand for test flight and other experimental activities…?

Survivor?

Fresh of the presses at Deep Diver Intel as I was typing this…for reasons unknown but bound to be scary, Global Hawk gets a US$555 million reincarnation to 2015…has anyone done any counter-UAS research on the effects of silver bullets, holy water and wooden stakes on aging technologies that just won’t die…?

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