172 Comments
Nov 7, 2021Liked by David Farrier

Kia ora, as someone who’s been in the activist scene for most of my adult life I’ve been confused and horrified at all of the hate directed towards old school activists, like Tame Iti and Tina Ngata, Chloe King etc. all are pro-vaccine and have worked their entire lives for their community.

Also I know well the people who have gone from activist to anti-vax and I’m scared what I’m hearing from them, such extreme fear including plans to run away to the bush and hide out with traps and stuff - to talking about how Jacinda needs to be shot and a revolution but not one I’d like to see... they’re all being quite sneaky and covert about their true intentions because they “can’t trust me” as I’m not on the same page.. as if I’m some sort of government mole?

The activist groups I was part of, were trying to warn people of the rise of racist misogynistic hatred growing in those dark, damp, basements across nz, because we were experiencing verbal attacks and other harassment from them online (sometimes in real life) and witnessing their true opinions. Nothing was done, and then the Christchurch attacks happened. People are “all talk” until they’re not and by then it’s too late.

I believe this movement is genuinely getting to a dangerous point - who are those responsible for the vaccines, not just govt, media and vaccinators, but the scientists, the health boards, the councils, doctors, nurses, the marketers, the artists, the activists, the influencers etc - do they also intend to include people who used Facebook profile stickers saying they were vaccinated? Or people who encouraged others online?

Personally I think Jacinda travelling the country to encourage people to get vaccinated is genuinely brave AF. There’s no way she’s not aware of the threats on her life. On all their lives. I hope they take it seriously and beef up security.

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I agree that it is getting dangerous. The Telegram channels are like this little ARG that is giving all these people the courage to be stupid. Maddening to watch. And yes - the way it's infiltrated activism and the left is so, so strange. It's like how hippies jumped into QAnon. A distrust of "the system" primed many for it, I guess. But the distrust is incredibly misplaced.

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Nov 8, 2021Liked by David Farrier

Cheers for this Kāhu and I agree strongly with you. We are seeing divisions within divisions now, with the original issue behind all this (Covid) bad enough without adding in conspiracy theories, vaccine “us and them” and now outright threats of violence. Too much “us and them” already exists without pouring petrol on the fire. Scary times mate but thank you for sharing - as my grandad would have said: more tautoko, less teko :)

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Nov 8, 2021Liked by David Farrier

Our PM is one brave wahine, luckily she's got a good strong team supporting her. Not just politically, but nationwide.

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Nov 8, 2021Liked by David Farrier

@KāhuG Totally agree with you . I’ve never felt the hatred and animosity in years of protesting and activism in the union movement as there is with the current anti Government Covid response from the anti vaccine crowd and their supporters. There seems to be more and more QAnon type American influence creeping in to these groups and I genuinely worry about the threat to Jacinda.

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David, I honestly don't know how you do it. How you keep an eye on these nutjobs and manage to remain sane. I know it's your job, but it's also so much more than that. It affects me. I can't stop staring at social media comments, all the hate and ignorance people spew, like I was watching the aftermath of a car crash. It's horrifying, and yet you can't take your eyes off it. This collective psyche is a deep and dark abyss to plunge into. There's nothing warm and comfortable about it. We're watching a huge bunch of people getting swallowed whole by a cult, and it seems like there's absolutely nothing we can do about it. Sometimes I wish the Internet never existed. I probably would have another job now, who knows. But wouldn't we be happier? Something tells me that, if this pandemic had happened in 1998, it would have been under control now.

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Thanks Rossella. Also - great name. For me writing about it helps me make sense of it, so makes me feel more sane, in a way. But at times it does get a bit rough. Those Telegram channels are full of arrogance, hatred and idiocy.

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And David Farrier we in Aotearoa really appreciate how you keep uncovering more, while you're still waiting for your lottery ticket home. But of course, you have eyes everywhere...

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I actually think you're right as 1998 would be predate the rise of modern social media and it's democratising of the ability to make and disseminate propaganda, something that was previously reserved for nation states.

https://consilienceproject.org/its-a-mad-information-war/

https://consilienceproject.org/we-dont-make-propaganda-they-do/

https://consilienceproject.org/the_end_of_propaganda/

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I also couldn't stop looking at all the awful comments but it was affecting me and making me carry around this underlying angry feeling all the time. So I deleted Facebook. Best decision ever, I highly recommend it!

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I wish I had the strength to do it. I live in New Zealand, but my family and many of my friends are in Italy; I thought about deleting Facebook many times, but I feel like I could lose that connection and feel even more isolated from them than I already am... (and I am, since 2018 unfortunately).

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Nov 7, 2021Liked by David Farrier

Oh god. As soon as she wrote this, I knew it would pop up in your newsletter. The person who wrote the awful, embarrassing post about tradies breaking into Parliament is one of my very best friends from high school. She is a beautiful, wonderful, warm, funny person who would give away everything she owns to help someone else, TRULY a very unique gem. And she has fallen deeply down the rabbit hole, as you can see from her post. When I've seen her lately, I've been so shocked by the descent that I can't even articulate replies to her, I just listen, and then tend to change the subject, because I love her so much that I don't want to fall out with her. It's so concerning. They are prepared to give up their family business and their jobs because of the mandate, and it blows my mind, it's so sad. I feel helpless.

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Oh fuck. I'm so sorry. New Zealand is so small. It must be utterly surreal for you to see this happening to a buddy. Do you still talk to her? It must be hard.

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So surreal. Yes! I saw her the day before she posted it. It's easy for these posters to be judged as absolute pieces of shit (I've done it) but she really is a truly beautiful human!

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This is exactly why I try so damn hard to maintain empathy for people like this online.

So many of them truly are trying to do their best, they've just been so thoroughly mislead and misinformed.

It's so damn sad.

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Nov 7, 2021Liked by David Farrier

I’m so sorry. My mother is deep in the conspiracy hell hole too, and it really, really sucks. I’m shocked by the trust in people that she would generally be sceptical of, and the progressive weakening of any critical thinking. I never give up hope that she will come to her senses. Good luck for your journey with your friend, it truly feels hopeless most of the time.

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Feeling for you. All the hugs.

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Thank you David - especially for all the work you do on these topics. It must be exhausting. Xx

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Nov 7, 2021Liked by David Farrier

And good luck to you too!

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Nov 7, 2021Liked by David Farrier

I have a similar friend, one of the most generous and kind people I know, and has now turned into a rabid "freedom fighter". It's so upsetting isn't it?

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Nov 8, 2021Liked by David Farrier

It really is. And the Jacinda hatred is so weird. I get it if you're not a fan, but she is being painted to be this evil demon, when really she is just a kind, sensible, normal woman who happens, thankfully, to be in charge of this country during the real version of the Twilight Zone! I see some angry nut called Claire Ward is all over that at the mo. It amazes me that the people posting these posts/videos actually appear to think they are martyrs and changemakers, when Karen from WAnganui posted the same shit last night.

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Nov 8, 2021Liked by David Farrier

(Btw love you Whanganui)

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Whanganui is beautiful. My nemesis lives there - but so do some of my nicest friends!

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One of the differences is we don’t have a Trump-like figure fostering the belief that the police will be in the protesters side. I know some actually were on Jan 6th. This NZ QAnon group doesn’t have THAT delusional belief, just lots of others.

The police should still take it seriously though. The Freedom & Rights Coalition are pushing this 9/11 narrative too which is also worrying - as Destiny has organised their ‘enough is enough’ stuff before. And I’m sure Brian Tamaki will be peeved that he can’t be at the centre of the circus in Wellington. Well, not unless he wildly breaches his bail conditions. I wonder if the police will arrest him first for organising again.

The reason Destiny (I mean FARC) is so against the recent Health order is that Destiny, City Impact, Gloriavale and other Christian groups all run private schools and the mandate applies to their staff. All that anti-vax preaching is about to bite them with either staff quitting and the schools collapsing for that reason or parents withdrawing students to avoid losing God’s protection from exposure to the non-biblical vaccine being ‘shed’ onto them. When you’re mainlining US televangelism anti-vax propaganda, it’s rather hard to turn the ship around like Gloriavale is attempting.

https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/gloriavale-christian-community-faces-education-conundrum-over-anti-vaccine-stance/EKI3FRMLUCETTM4HF2REBH53HA/

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Bang on RE: The schools they run. And the fact NZ doesn't (thankfully) have a Trump. National dog whistled a little last year, but generally seem to be settling down in regards to vaccinations. So yes. My hear though is that Trump's messaging from last year and earlier this year is still banging around clearly in certain kiwis heads - and being applied to the current situation.

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Really, seems to me Judith is veering between supporting vaccination and inciting civil disobedience (saying businesses should open regardless) while profiting personally from some leaders of anti-vax movement (unless her rental runs at a loss...)*

* maybe that last one is a bit of a stretch... or is it?

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I think Judith is engaged in desperate opportunistic dog-whistling rather than with any kind of real conviction. Her dismal poll numbers aren't going to improve themselves.

The only thing saving her leadership is that no-one else wants the poisoned chalice that is being leader of the National party right now. The socially conservative religious right is ascendant in the party (Luxon, Bridges, etc.) and all the more socially liberal have been pushed out (Bennet, Adams, Kaye, etc.).

Now other fiscally conservative but more social liberally urbanites are shifting to Act. Even the Young Nats find National too socially conservative now.

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Yeah, the risk of unplanned violence at these protests could be increasing as the temperature rises as evidenced by QAnon-influenced anti-vaxxers feeling justified in assaulting media. That threat to children narrative is really problematic.

But it's one thing to harass or assault reporters and yet another level of escalation to swing at police. In saying that, I'm not intending to minimise the seriousness of assaults on media. That's a real problem and deeply troubling to democracy.

And we do clearly have right-wing provocateurs embedded in these anti-vax protest movements looking to escalate things like they did in Melbourne. But that was also helped along by alcohol-fueled young tradies getting worked up and then leaping in.

The more threatening factor in the Capitol Riots was the planned violence at the hands of groups like the Proud Boys and Oath Keepers. Our firearms laws mean we don't have openly organised militias in NZ like they do in the US. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_militia_movement

In some ways, that might just mean they organise 'underground' like far right groups do here and in many other countries. With you and Dylan scanning Telegram, you'd likely have a better idea if these kinds of groups are operating in NZ than me. As I recall Christchurch white supremacist Phillip Arps and Counterspin's Kelvyn Alps have that kind of background and attitude but I believe both are banned from owning firearms as a result.

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FARC is a weird mix: Destiny, Voices For Freedom, Groundswell (boys with big tractor toys, not real farmers), Sovereignty and aging new agers. I saw all that at the Auckland Domain protest, as I stood there with 2 friends and our modest "get vaxxed" signs. Lots of hostility & abuse from FARC people, including children.

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Yeah, the ‘executive’ of FARC is not stated actually anywhere. We have that photo courtesy of Dylan Reeve which shows the Tamaki’s, Leo Molloy and Scott Bright, a local Groundswell organiser. The head of Groundswell has since distanced himself from FARC and antivax activities https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/health/coronavirus/126844051/groundswell-nz-denies-being-antivax-after-founder-shuns-vaccination-promo-video

Destiny actually runs FARC. Destiny Financial Manager Jenny Marshall registered the domain name, it’s PO Box is the same as Destiny’s, they sell the merchandise. https://www.stuff.co.nz/auckland/local-news/126840776/covid19-destiny-church-denies-making-profit-from-protest-groups-antilockdown-merchandise

But yes, a ragtag bunch of others share FARCs goals and ambitions and organise their members to show up at the protests including other white evangelical mega churches like City Impact and anti-vaccine groups like Voices for Freedom, Southern Hikoi of Truth, etc.

They all seem largely happy for Destiny folks to do the heavy lifting and attract the police and legal attention for organising against the health orders. And Destiny’s manchild, Apostle Brian does appear to love media attention and have a bit of an ego, hence it’s him FARC is putting forward to negotiate with the Government.

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Thanks Paul, I've been following FARC too. The bizarre video, with Hannah, Brian, Leo and Scott chatting cosily around the Tamakis' table during lockdown (no masks of course), planning the first protest, was later removed. Molloy said he was vaccinated (because of his child) but it was everyone's choice. Hannah said she believed in natural immunity. Scotty, I suspect, just wanted to show off his new digger. Don't remember Brian saying much, Hannah & Leo did most of the talking. I think too many Destiny/Freedums followers didn't want Molloy involved, which is why he disappeared.

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Nov 7, 2021Liked by David Farrier

I have no doubt there's going to be violence at some point. Even my (red-pilled) white, privileged North Shore friends who have never engaged in any form of protest before are talking about "doing whatever I have to in order to protect my rights and my children's freedom". It's horrifying and I'm genuinely concerned both for Jacinda Ardern's safety and her psychological wellbeing too - can you imagine what it's like trying to lead a country through a pandemic and being abused like this daily?

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Ugh - that North Shore crowd. I feel ya. Haven't had to feel a shred of fear in their lives: now this.

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Haha I should also mention, I am from the North Shore, and have plenty of rational, normal friends who also live here!

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Me too! I'm sure most people are still normal here but it's quite interesting seeing which people fall prey to conspiracy madness, some are kind of expected and some you just never would have picked.

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Me three! 😆 I’ve noticed the same. My brothers partner has gone right down there, and him being a trump supporter (🤢) makes him equally susceptible to alt right views. Yeah we’re not getting together at Christmas 😆

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Yeah, I thought Trump stuff meant Xmas was going to be rough for lots of people last year. The anti-vaccine stuff is going to make NZ family get togethers this Xmas even more uncomfortable if not impossible. Sad!

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Hey! I live on the North Shore. I do know of 4 North Shore friends (yes, all white and privileged) who are not getting vaccinated. As far as I know they are just scared of the vaccine, not too deep down the rabbit hole yet. But I have distanced myself from them and also ditched Facebook so I'm not really sure what they're thinking at the moment. Everyone else I know here is still "normal" so we haven't all lost our minds!

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You may find lots of them are Voices For Freedom supporters. Have you seen their website? Very organised.

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I too am concerned for Ardern's wellbeing, she is incredibly resilient and needs all the support she can get.

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Nov 7, 2021Liked by David Farrier

Why are humans so lame and gullible when it comes to reasons for hate. Its awful.

I had a family member yesterday tell me they wanted to come down to wellington and light a fire outside parliament and give that bitch jacinda the fingers. The reason was a bit confusing but somehow included the brightline tax for property investors, lockdowns and splitting up families to stop them supporting each other to buy houses, inflation and the decreasing value of our dollar all being part of her cruel agenda and power grab. Was a lot. I moved the conversation on, but still feel like I was slapped in the face with the reality of someone I love thinking this shit. I'll make a point to address the various issues in future conversations. But the violence of the comments is taking a while to digest. I want to be calm when I loop back. The timing of this newsletter is uncanny because I can't help but feel intensity in all the wrong places is rising. Thanks David.

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Sorry you are having to deal with this so close to home. Hang in there. Be a voice of reason. Or at least not one of insanity. They need that.

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Nov 7, 2021Liked by David Farrier

A while ago I would have thought, “no way would that happen here. We’re too logical and practical to buy into any of that conspiracy stuff “, but in the last year I’ve seen people who I regarded as logical and sensible who have started repeating those anti vax and conspiracy talking points, and now I just don’t know. Maybe it could. I hope not, but I’m not confident anymore that it won’t.

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Nov 7, 2021Liked by David Farrier

I've seen this kind language used the last ten years with the anti vaccine movement. Dr Richard Pan - a California Senator has had a security detail in place for years due to the threats (and attempted assaults) against him. Only two or three years ago, anti vaxers, standing above in the viewing floor poured menstrual blood on senators as they discussed vaccines legislations.

I've seen them make mob threats, I've seen them harass medical professionals so badly that the targets have had to move - several times.

In all that time, I had not seen the same language or the same actions taken here in Aotearoa. Not once.

That has all changed. My sister, her partner and all their friends are all proudly anti COVID vaccine now (even after supporting what I did for vaccination advocacy over the years). They "baaa baaa" at people when they see them use the tracing app; they "staunchly" refuse to wear masks (or more like - they are all bluster about it, until they get to the door and then sheepishly wear them); are pro-horse paste, and of course - won't touch the vaccine. They proudly fly the confederate flag in their bar at home, which I had to sit under and keep my mouth shut during my fathers 70th birthday a few weeks ago.

This is all very American flavoured. As my Brazilian fiance told me the other day - she is worried because this is all sounding and looking like the period before Bolsinaro took power. There is a common thread there...

Bannon.

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You're bang on about Bannon. And fuck, I'm so sorry you have this so close to you. I think I've told you this before. I am lucky in that I don't have anyone close to me down the rabbit hole. And I feel very lucky for that, as it doesn't make it personal for me.

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Nov 8, 2021Liked by David Farrier

Oh Scott that’s awful! It feels like a smack in the face when people you care about and thought respected you, can turn and ignore your expertise completely. Feels like betrayal.

Certain people in my life shrug off what information I give as they think I just get it from “Cindy (🤢) and the TV”, not knowing that I’ve searched and investigated, checked sources, have worked out what is solid information and what is opinion, weeded out the crap and collected some really great articles and have a really good understanding of these vaccines now. I’m actually annoyed at how little the MoH puts out in regards to the vaccines, it’s no wonder the vaccine-skeptical people revolt when the blandest most vague and generic statements are put up. How does “safe and effective” compare to “its gene therapy! It’s changing our DNA! It’s making people infertile! It’s going to give everyone blood clots in 2-3 months oh wait no 2-3 or 5 or 10 years! It’s giving kids heart attacks! It’s causing ADE to any virus see super cold?! It’s shedding and causing bleeding in nearby individuals!”

It’s the same crap spouted every time for every vaccine. Most people wouldn’t have heard any of it before now so it’s extra scary for them when we start mandating.

I hope your sister chills out a bit soon and notices some of the inconsistencies in the plot they’re being fed. And thank you thank you thank you for being an advocate!

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Nov 7, 2021Liked by David Farrier

It worries me reading this, because for the most part, I am blithely ignorant of what is happening out there. Sure, I am well aware of the anti-vax movement and the rumblings from people about the government, but I just had no idea that it was getting THIS rabid. Maybe because I dont spend all my time on social media (I only use facebook and instagram but dont seem to have the fringe on my feed) and I don't always watch the news anymore either because often it isn't news anymore, it's just opinions. In a way I'm glad, David, that you keep me aware of what is going on, however, on the flip side, this particular webworm leaves me feeling quite depressed. If you must do these stories (and actually yes you definitely must), please follow up with a picture of a puppy or kitten as there is nothing rotten about them and it will restore my happiness equilibrium for the day.

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I will make sure some cat Webworms are getting primed and ready. I do plan to do more light hearted stuff. It's there. I just keep getting distracted by this stuff, and I think it's important to document in some way. Thanks for being here.

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Nov 7, 2021Liked by David Farrier

Urgh. Urgh. Urgh. This makes me so sad... I have felt so proud how well A-NZ and Kiwis have managed the pandemic compared with what many colleagues, friends and family overseas had to deal with in their countries. I didn't think it could happen here, not like that. And now it has... I of course knew there was a fringe of super right-wing, racist and misogynist, Christian totalitarian folks here too, but I didn't think so many ordinary, good Kiwis like those people write about in these comments could be tipped into this US-style conspiracy thinking. I honestly thought Kiwis were too... practical? irreverent? kind? to fall for this stuff, especially seeing we do have a much stronger social net here than in the US. On the other hand, that net is very skewed against the poor, and there is a ton of inequity, and the hangover of colonisation that does pervade everything in our culture too. But in general, I always thought (and still do) that we are a much more tolerant and less hateful society than the US, or Austria, where I was raised, and where some really crazy stuff is going down in the moment too. And I still read/hear way more crazy stuff coming from well-off Pākehā who fell into it via the wellness route, or the evangelist Church leaders, all of whom made their riches on the backs of the poor... But there seems to have been a definite break in the general way we communicate (all of us, from the government to media to social media) since Delta got loose in the community, or am I reading this wrong? It just seems to have ramped up the language and threats, and the fearmongering seems to stick more to those who have a chink in their psychic armour, for whatever (often solid) reason. However, I simply can't see thousands of Kiwis "storming" the beehive and erect gallows on Parliament grounds for Jacinda and Hipkins. Let's pray I'm right.

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There is that happy fact that we just have less people than America, and therefore less idiots. That is a shining light.

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Yeah, with less thermal neutrons (hot-headed conspiracists), we might not reach critical mass (riots and insurrections).

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Nov 8, 2021Liked by David Farrier

True. Though I still believe there’s also a lower proportion of real idiots here 😊

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Dreadfully worried here too - have watched the Bannon/Williams/De Ment(ed) machinations and the result of their nasty little racist workings, and have also been monitoring Chantelle Baker (no relation of mine), Sue Grey, and the other nutso exGP from Tauranga who have clearly been weaponised (willingly!) by these arseholes judging by the online conversations they have with eachother. And I just want to end them. And that makes me as bad as them, and so I also worry for myself :-(

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Nov 7, 2021Liked by David Farrier

Urgh you can see this is just the highlight of Sue Grey's life, she is so pumped and brimming with self importance, it is extremely cringey.

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Yes - it's given her a reason to live. It really has. And that's a powerful, powerful feeling. You can see others in the channels being empowered by her.

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*nod* I find her to be extremely repulsive in her grub-like smugness and ego-related self importance.

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FACT (Aotearoa Fight Against Conspiracy Theories) have recently made a formal complaint about Sue Grey to the law society. Hopefully that does something to reign in her awful behaviour? Wouldn't it be great if she lost her law license? At least then she would stop annoying the government with all her stupid anti-vax court cases.

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We live in hope. But the NZ Law Society doesn't always act quickly...

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I have a bit of an 'in' to the NZLS - a sort of in-law was President, though not for about ten years now - so a thought a word in the ear may go somewhere. So I did drop a word.....crossing fingers.

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Chantelle Baker? Oh, you mean Miss News Personality 2021? Can't wait for her next spot on a rightwing Sky TV Australia show as a "political commentator". She's very skilled at creating new job titles for herself.

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Nov 7, 2021Liked by David Farrier

I've been growing concerned with the escalating focus on Jacinda, and blaming her for everything. I like to discount a lot of the noise as a vocal minority whipped up by those influencing them from overseas, but it's getting harder seeing more and more 'normal' people sharing those views.

It really shows how narrow minded they are that they need to focus it in on a single point/person. The Prime Minister doesn't have all the power or outright decision making they think she does.

Back when the firearm reforms and buybacks were happening I watched my uncle (on Facebook, as he's in another part of the country) start blaming Jacinda for everything. I felt like the only person trying to discuss it with him or tell him to pull his head in. Eventually it got too much, I wished him all the best, told him to get help, and that I was going to block him.

Have thought of going back to see what shit he's posting now, but then I'd rather get rid of Facebook completely.

Never seem to run into any of these other nuts in public, but preparing for some of the family ones to pop up at Xmas. Have no hang ups (family or not) shutting their shit down.

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It really is like the way Hilary became a target for... everything. They hate the fact she's a woman, too. It's all incredibly misogynistic.

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Nov 8, 2021Liked by David Farrier

I guess that's why they want to get rid of Jacinda, but I haven't seen any mention of them wanting Judith to take over, or even worse - 'one of the gays'!

You're now making me 1. wonder how much flak a male PM would be getting at the moment, and 2. also worry for my two young girls growing up with this mindset around them.

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God forbid a gay gets in power! My gosh!

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Nov 8, 2021Liked by David Farrier

Yes David EXACTLY, I was saying to my husband tonight that it's no surprise all the mysogynists are frothing over any excuse to attack her. Urggghhh

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Nov 7, 2021Liked by David Farrier

I totally agree with being perplexed by this focus that it's all Jacinda. That's not how our government works people!

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These people have very little idea how government works. They live in a playland.

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Nov 8, 2021Liked by David Farrier

That's a big problem. People don't know how Govt works. All the civil servants who run the departments can slow or hasten the elected Govt's plans. The Govt has, in my eyes, lost time in handling Covid since before Delta got here BUT none of that is down to JA or any other politician alone . Repulsive messaging from these nuts.

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I know, right?! It's so weird how the conspiracy crowd always go on about her being a tyrannical dictator. I don't think they understand what a dictator is. Or how our government works. Or anything really....

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Chris I hear you- it's insane. My wonderful aunty has just flipped over to the dark side and it's awful.

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Nov 7, 2021Liked by David Farrier

One of the many mysteries of USAnian-style ranting, is the constant inclusion of "commie" and "communism". It seems to have nothing to do with the actual political philosophy, but is more of a generic insult. Weird.

is Mr De Ment using an alias. Surely no-one would use that name? He certainly sounds demented.

And why, to sound like a good ol' boy myself, doesn't he go back to USA if this is how he thinks about his adopted country? We really don't need him or people like him as immigrants, when there are so many people out there, with nowhere to go and lots to offer.

An immigrant, myself, from England, I have always been somewhat shocked at Kiwi's infatuation with USA. I admit that it's never been a culture that appeals to me.

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And yes, the US obsession with Communism and antipathy towards Socialism is a post WW2 and Cold War relic that fed into McCarthyism https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/McCarthyism

NZ isn't immune though. Muldoon used it in NZ in 1975 against the Labour party - the infamous Dancing Cossacks TV commercial. And it worked too helping sweep National into power.

https://nzhistory.govt.nz/media/video/dancing-cossacks

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I watched the commercial. I am completely shocked. It's so blatant.

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De Ment (also Dement, Du Mont, etc.) is a surname of french origin meaning "of the mountain (or hill)". It's not uncommon in Southern states in the US likely due to the early French colonies and other settlers there.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/French_colonization_of_the_Americas

https://www.houseofnames.com/dement-family-crest

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Nov 7, 2021Liked by David Farrier

Oh, I knew it was a real name, but it just seemed so extraordinarily apposite, I couldn't help wondering! 😃

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Yeah - he probably had a hell of a time at school. Ironically, a history of bullying and lack of parental support often feeds into paranoia and conspiracism later in life as defences against (further) humiliation by an oppressive shaming other that is misdirected and projected onto other marginalised groups.

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Nov 7, 2021Liked by David Farrier

Interesting. That aspect never occurred to me in this instance.

However, I was also very badly bullied at school and my mother, who had adored school, refused to believe me. It went on for years. I think that this sort of excuse for antisocial behaviour, gets a bit old after a number of years. After all, one can look around and see how other people behave and choose to do likewise. We are not automotons who are forced by experiences to end up a certain way.

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Oh sure. I'm not excusing his adult behaviour, which is awful, in any way. I'm just offering a perspective on one of the possible factors that contributed to him choosing this road. Because you're right - we all have choices. Only a minority of those who are victimised become bullies themselves.

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No, it's him: De Ment. He's very open and very emboldened.

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Nov 8, 2021Liked by David Farrier

Fuck.

This was a depressing read to start my day.

I'm sitting in my garden, basking in the morning sun, listening to birdsong... And reading about ignorant, manipulated people, figuring out how to fix our country by destroying it.

And once again, I am stuck in the modern Internet users dilemma; keep reading and ruin my day, or throw my phone away and bask in ignorance as well as the sun.

Fuck.

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Sun is so good. I love the sun. Bask in it. Birds also good. Jealous.

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Me to😳I decided to stop reading all that drivel and stopped reading the Gaurdian,Stuff,the bulletin and deleted all the political sites on YouTube (I got rid of Facebook years ago when I realised that most people I went to school with have morphed into rwnj)Tranquility for a few days,although I’ve seen enough cute cat and dog pictures to last several life times😂BUT as a dog returns to it’s vomit,so a man returns to his folly I’ve started sneaking the odd look,again to my detriment.Sort of reminds me of stopping smoking!

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Nov 8, 2021Liked by David Farrier

Thanks as always David Farrier, at last someone is exposing Chafin at work

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Nov 8, 2021Liked by David Farrier

What I am finding really terrifying is a new wave of very progressive friends getting swept away by this. They are largely people who have traditionally not vaccinated their children and have rapidly started sharing some VERY worrying stuff. I'm not sure if they understand where a lot of this content originates. Many of them are planning to attend tomorrow.

I've been beating myself up for weeks wondering if I could have done more. I'm VERY plugged into this sort of thing - internet hate/conspiracy trends. I kind of just took it for granted that the intelligent, kind, thoughtful people in my life were too. I was very wrong.

What can you do against something that is so detached from reality and so manipulative of psychology and algorithms?

I clicked that for many people this is all about a loss of control. For many people this will be the first time they have experienced this, others have a history of trauma where their autonomy has been taken away. It's absolutely awful feeling powerless. When something comes along giving voice to that feeling I think a lot of people seize on that even if it isn't something they traditionally align with.

I put a post on my local community Facebook group sharing Tina Ngata's brilliant covid community response piece and suggesting we get something together locally for mutual aid and grassroots support. Maybe giving people something tangible to do and a feeling of control over the situation on a local human level might help. If you have the energy and drive to do similar please do. This is a really scary time we need to provide a positive alternative to the very vocal toxic calls to action.

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Nov 8, 2021Liked by David Farrier

Tina Ngata's piece. Warning this is a heavy, pragmatic, read. If you are feeling vulnerable about this stuff save it until you are in a better space 💜

https://tinangata.com/2021/10/20/planning-for-delta-at-community-level/

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Nov 8, 2021Liked by David Farrier

Tina is the best.

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THE best

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Tina rules - thanks for posting that. I was lucky enough to get her writing here last year: https://www.webworm.co/p/why-are-conspiracy-theories-dripping

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