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Wazza's Trans-Tasman Tales (cont.)
Another particular nasty issue of late is Dutton’s propensity for picking on Kiwis whom he labels a risk to the Australian community, despite them having lived longer (in some cases only ever) in Australia. This latest event followed a really spiteful go at Brownlow medalist Dusty Martin’s dad Shane, whom Dutton decided needed to be prevented from attending a family Christmas get-together on Bali because, even though Shane was going nowhere near Australia, getting Indonesia to refuse him entry allows Dutton to deny him an Australian visa (this story, behind a paywall unfortunately, provides details of the legal shenanigans). If nothing else this is a very vindictive individual and, as The Age piece referred to above alerts readers to, even the legal fraternity considers Dutton a liability. If I was invited to evaluate the risk potential of individuals to the Australian community I’d have Dutton near to top mainly because some see him as PM potential and that isn’t a pretty prospect for trans-Tasman relations given his track record to date.

On a lighter note…Aotearoa-New Zealand has recently asserted it has a place as a player in the ‘space race’ https://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/348744/nz-space-industry-reaching-for-the-stars. Although started in NZ, Rocket Lab is now a US company with a ‘wholly owned New Zealand subsidiary’ – whatever that means (US wholly owned...?) And there’s big competition in the space biz as billionaire futurists and Homo Deus contenders seek means to lay claim to the heavens and personal immortality (we’ve even got ourselves one of those Homo Deus prospects too: the previous National government having elided its strict immigration criteria, on the grounds of potential investment opportunities, to secretly fast track citizenship for billionaire ‘PayPal’ and Trump aficionado Peter Theil) http://www.nzherald.co.nz/indepth/national/how-peter-thiel-got-new-zealand-citizenship/ Anyhoo, we do know that competition inspires the desire for promotion – if you’re going to be one of the 0.001% that owns 99.99% of the universe you want to be the shining star right? Well Rocket Lab man Peter Beck’s promotional angle is just that and he’s launched his very own shining star.
Beck says ‘the satellite was launched to encourage people to consider their place in the universe, and to reflect on their own lives and the lives of humanity as a species.’ which calls on a need for that well know kiwi checksum ‘yeah right!’ I mean, where do we begin: is it a bird? Is it a duck? Does it quack? Oh right it’s really shiny, it’s for ‘humanity’ and no one will ever believe we’ve packed it full of all sorts of nefarious spy shit...Sorry, that’s pure speculation on my part. Nevertheless, the ‘Humanity Star’ has attracted more critics than fans, especially critics who care about the heavens, who climbed into Beck after he claimed “The night sky is full of stars, this is just one other star ... It's not like we're polluting out the night sky with a whole bunch of stuff.” A claim even the esteemed Scientific American took issue with https://blogs.scientificamerican.com/life-unbounded/twinkle-twinkle-satellite-vermin/. In sum, it’s this sort of attention-seeking carry on that Aotearoa-New Zealand can well do without. We already have quite enough Astronomical net worth tossers setting up their post apocalyptic bolt holes on the shores of lakes Wanaka and Wakitipu thanks very much, we don’t need to attract anymore! Furthermore, Queenstown’s mayor has proposed slapping down Airbnb and shutting out freedom campers, so if you’re after a few nights accommodation while you tour the Central Otago estate agents, tough luck pal, maybe give Pete Theil a bell.
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