Thursday, August 27, 2009
Can't come soon enough for some teams. Still an interesting few scenarios on offer. If the faltering Storm slip up then the Sea Eagles could take a home semi. At the same time if the Sea Eagles lose one of their last 2 they may find they are away v the Dragons or Bulldogs in the playoffs. The Eels despite being the form team in the comp in the past 6 weeks are still outside the playoffs (albeit on points differential). Two wins though and they will make it. The Tigers also have been the other form team (6 wins from their past 7) but they are a point outside the 8.
The other teams just in the 8 are the Broncos, Knights and Panthers and they all won last week so it's a real crush.
The first 3 clashes are the money matches. All between sides in the 8 or hunting for it. The other 5 clashes are between teams in the 8 v sides who's season is gone. There might be one party pooper hiding in those 5 but I can't see it at this time of the year.
Eels v Panthers
Eels by 10
You'd have to wouldn't you? It'll take a special effort to burst this yellow and blue bubble and it's unlikely to come from the Panthers in enemy territory. The Eels to leap frog the Panthers into the 8.
Cowboys v Broncos
Broncos by 4
The Cowboys just don't deserve to be in the playoffs if you ask me (and nobody ever does). If they lose their season is over so that may inspire them but the Broncos have turned their year round in 2 weeks. Broncos to ride the Cowboys this time.
Titans v Tigers
Tigers by 8
This should be an intriguing clash. The Tigers still played well last week despite losing and if they play the same way again I can see them taking care of this seasons pretenders. How the Titans have locked in 3rd spot is beyond me. Cartwright must be one hell of a coach.
Storm v Roosters
Storm by 18
The Storm are so good at dicking hopeless teams but struggle when teams front up in the middle of the park. The Roosters are too soft to pull that off though.
Rabbitohs v Dragons
Dragons by 10
This is hard to pick in some ways. A traditional rivalry that goes way back and the Dragons are out of nick. The theory is that Bennett is training them too hard deliberately to get some conditioning into them for the tough games down the stretch. Time will tell, but the Bunnies season officially ended last weekend so not enough to inspire them I reckon.
Sea Eagles v Sharks
Sea Eagles by 24
The Sharks are making up the numbers. The Sea Eagles have a sniff of a home playoff as they are a point off 4th. At the same time they are only a point off 9th so there is extreme pressure and they should make fishburgers out of Cronulla.
Bulldogs v Warriors
Bulldogs by 22
The Warriors might make a game of it but remember, the 30 points v the roosters which was supposed to be an attacking wakeup call was followed by a score of 4, then the 32 v the Panthers was followed by scores of 10 and 4. Don't expect anything to have been learnt last week either. Bulldogs fans to send El Masri off like a champion before smashing some trains up on the way home.
Raiders v Knights
Raiders by 4
Who the fuck knows? I mean seriously. Who the fuck knows?
Thursday, August 20, 2009
A government that has dropped the ball on climate change. They just don't get it. What is it about right wingers and wanting their dicks sucked by their mates? Or to hand out the dick sucks?
An All Black team with 3 old men who have forgotten how to coach. It's a winter sport and they obviously don't like getting cold outside at trainings so keep them short and sweet and so our lineouts remain disfunctional. Our forwards coach is a former back who doesnt coach mauling and who needs a specialist scrum coach to come in to take care of that. As mentioned our lineouts are awful and our forwards spend most of the time in the backs. So perhaps that's the problem. When he calls them in for some forward training he can't find them because they are all off with Smith.
And then there's Smith who had the amazing revelation recently that "kicking is a very important part of rugby these days" and that we need to start working on it. Well excuse me but if you've just realised that you can just fuck right off. None of our outside backs can punt well and so they just run it from everywhere. I could punt a ball 40 to 50 metres when I was a teenager and I was a bloody forward. Could somebody please make these guys kick for an hour a day!!!!!!!!!!!!!
And then there's Graham Henry who can just fuck right off.
Ivan Cleary at the Warriors. Horrible recruiting (bringing Jones back was ridiculous and yes when I heard it announced last year I had a WTF?! moment), horrible selections during the year. An abomination of a game plan. In fact, I'll go as far as to say that our game plan is, run the ball up, and when the ref says "fifth" pass it to Jones to bomb to the corner. That's it. Fullstop. We are about to score the least number of points per game in club history (and we have had far worse sides), and if not for the Sharks would have close to the worst attack in the NRL in a decade. if you don't believe me go do some stat research.
The principals of Auckland Boys Grammar and Kelston Boys High School.
A fucking disgrace, the pair of you. Watts at least made the right noises most of the time but he dropped the ball at the start and poor old Morris has brought shame on that school. He didn't even know where the ball was for a week and then when he found it has tried to kick it over the stand roof. Both of you, your blame the other side tactics have meant you've acted like the fabulous enabling duo for shithouse behaviour by young men. Shame, shame, shame.
It's getting to the light end of my year in terms of workload and I'm IN NO MOOD FOR DICKHEADS!!!
Tigers v Eels
Eels by 4
This should be an absolute rip roaring cracker of a match. Or one side could blow the other ones confidence and with it, season away. I could go either way but the dice came up blue and yellow.
Dragons v Broncos
Dragons by 10
Unthinkable a couple of weeks ago but the Broncos probably won't lose this game by 70 points. In fact there is an extremely small chance of an upset. But it's so small I'm not going to be a dickhead and pick it.
Knights v Cowboys
Knights by 4
Another interesting clash. The Cowboys are all over the shop and the Knights played some good footie last weekend to knockoff the Storm. I have a feeling that they might struggle to do that 2 weeks running and they are awful finishers which will play on their minds but maybe a big turnout will provide the defibrolator they need for one more week on their season.
Panthers v Rabbitohs
Panthers by 6
The Rabbitohs are travelling a touch better but only because the Panthers were munted off the park by the Broncos. Teams that were killed on the road often bounce back at home the net week. Fingers crossed for this tipster.
Titans v Sharks
Titans by 14
The Sharks season died long ago. they played a bit of decent footie just for the hell of it but now they have remembered that a) they are shit and b) their season really did die long ago so c) they have nothing left to play for except Mad Monday. Uh, oh!
Warriors v Raiders
Raiders by 6
I really want to pick the Warriors but I just can't. They have given up. The Raiders whould have but showed last week they've got some rock'n'roll left on them smacking the shit out of the side that should win the comp. The Warriors need to swallow some fucken man pills and bash the shit out of somebody for the first time in a long time.
Storm v Sea Eagles
Storm by 4
Please oh please let the Storm win this. I have no further comment.
Bulldogs v Roosters
Bulldogs by 24
The biggest mismatch of the round. So the Roosters to win it then. Fucking NRL!!!
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
Rabbitohs v Titans
Rabbitohs by 4
Tough to call. Titans had a walk in the park last week but I think in Sydney the Rabbitohs will realise its last chance saloon with their remaining home game against the Dragons.
Cowboys v Bulldogs
Bulldogs by 4
The Bulldogs just don't look anything like the team that started the year and are extremely vulnerable. The Cowboys arguably have more to play for with a playoff spot on the line but they have a horrible 2 and 9 record v the Dogs in Townsville.
Roosters v Sea Eagles
Sea Eagles by 12
The Sea Eagles just have to get their shit back on track or they will either miss the playoffs or be rocking on up to Kogarah in Week 1. The Roosters have grown something resembling a backbone but they are playing with enthusiasm not class and it's class that starts winning all the games from this point on.
Raiders v Dragons
Dragons by 6
Believe it or not the Dragons might not win this too easily. They have a few suspension concerns and injuries and it'll probably be minus 53 in Canberra on Saturday night as well. They can afford the loss but Bennett won't allow it.
Eels v Warriors
Eels by 24
The Eels are on fire at the moment and will blow this shithouse opposition off the park.
Sharks v Tigers
Tigers by 10
Stuart basically called his side fucking hopeless in last weeks press conference and that is indeed what they are. Tigers roll on.
Broncos v Panthers
Panthers by 6
The Broncos will have some confidence back but they only beat the Sharks. They still look very vulnerable down the edges, and up the middle, and the areas in between. The Panthers will find those pesky holes and put points on.
Knights v Storm
Storm by 8
The Knights have fallen to bits. They've got nothing left. Where did all the enthusiasm and energy go? Who knows? Who cares? Not me. Storm to seal a top 4 spot with this win.
Like what I did there with the colours?
Friday, August 07, 2009
It's a ridiculous campaign that's being fought on several levels.
Firstly "smack" isn't defined. Secondly "good parental correction" is totally subjective, like having a referendum requiring the All Blacks to play "attractive rugby" or some such nonsense.
Thirdly if you look at the law as it now stands there doesn't seem to be anything stopping parents from giving their kids a light tap on the bum or arm or wherever the offending or closest body part is.
(1) Every parent of a child and every person in the place of a parent of the child is justified in using force if the force used is reasonable in the circumstances and is for the purpose of—
(a) preventing or minimising harm to the child or another person; or
(b) preventing the child from engaging or continuing to engage in conduct that amounts to a criminal offence; or
(c) preventing the child from engaging or continuing to engage in offensive or disruptive behaviour; or
(d) performing the normal daily tasks that are incidental to good care and parenting.
(2) Nothing in subsection (1) or in any rule of common law justifies the use of force for the purpose of correction.
(3) Subsection (2) prevails over subsection (1).
(4) To avoid doubt, it is affirmed that the Police have the discretion not to prosecute complaints against a parent of a child or person in the place of a parent of a child in relation to an offence involving the use of force against a child, where the offence is considered to be so inconsequential that there is no public interest in proceeding with a prosecution.
Section 59: substituted, on 21 June 2007, by section 5 of the Crimes (Substituted Section 59) Amendment Act 2007 (2007 No 18).
Fourthly it doesn't seem as though any parents or caregivers have been prosecuted for anything that they seem concerned about. There was one case which was jumped on early involving South Island father Jimmy Mason who in his words did nothing wrong, but was later found to have punched his 4 year old son in the face. The twits who have an axe to grind over this tried to make out as though he was being prosecuted for nothing more than an ear pull. They went strangely quiet later.
And fifthly, the ads on radio are absurd. Saying that parents have always had the right not to smack and imagine how they would feel if a law change said that all parents had to smack?!
That is such a fucking dumb line of logic it beggars belief. It's a bit like saying that they should put the speed limits up to 60kmph because people who go under 50 have always had the right to go under 50 and imagine how they would feel if we made them drive above 60 at all times. Or non drug users have always had the right not to take drugs and so imagine how they'd feel if we told them they had to take crack once a week. Although in saying that, this whole referendum makes me wonder if some people haven't been living that lifestyle before coming up with it.
The point of the law change was to protect ALL kids, not just those of people who supported it.
It sends out a message that people should look to other solutions first, second and third. Violence is officially off the agenda. Force on the other hand may be used in the circumstances stated in the law change.
Also the idea that this law won't make child abuse go away is entirely correct. Just the same as speed limits won't make speeding go away and coaching won't make a team win every time they take the field. Especially not one with 3 old has beens coaching it (I use 'coaching' in the loosest sense possible). But it will certainly reduce it in the same way that speed limits reduce deaths and coaching improves performance (well usually anyway).
Terry Dobbs in today's Herald has some interesting findings that are well worth reading.
But how real is this - what do children tell us? In 2005, as part of my Master's thesis at Otago University, I interviewed 80 children aged between 5 and 14 years old about their experiences and understanding of family discipline. They were from ordinary New Zealand households with no history of child abuse or neglect.
The children's reports contradict some of the commonly held adult claims about the way physical discipline is administered. Most of the children I interviewed said physical punishment was the disciplinary technique most often used in their families, and it was often used as the first line of discipline rather than the last resort.
When asked: "What are some of the things that happen to children when they do things they shouldn't?", some typical responses were: "They [parents] get a stick and smack it [bottom]," (6-year-old girl); "You get a smack in the mouth," (7-year-old boy). Some 91 per cent of children in this study said they had been physically punished. Adults may define a smack as something a lot gentler than a hit, but children were clear that a smack is a hard hit that hurts both emotionally and
Smacking made children feel sad, angry and fearful and they said that it spoiled their relationship with the person who smacked them. "You feel real upset because they are hurting you and you love them so much and then all of a sudden they hit you and hurt you and you feel like as though they don't care about you because they are hurting you," (13-year-old girl).
Fear and pain may sometimes achieve short-term obedience, but in the long term these emotions are unlikely to contribute to positive behavioural outcomes or promote children's effective learning. Children also reported being smacked for hurting others. Children were told that it was wrong to hurt someone else and yet they are hurt in response to hurting others.
Supporters of the use of physical punishment say that parents should not and do not hit in anger, but children's experiences suggest otherwise. "Depending on how angry they [parents] are because if it's something they get really angry about then they will probably hit you because they won't be able to control their anger and stuff," (13-year-old boy).
In this context parents may get emotional release and satisfaction from smacking, which may then be confused with effectiveness. "I think when they [parents] get so angry they just do it [smack] and then afterwards they think, 'Oh I shouldn't have done that'," (13-year-old girl). Many of the children also described being smacked or hit around the face and/or head and with implements. It is clear that some children's experience of physical punishment is not that of a "mild smack" or "loving tap". "My Dad uses the tennis racket," (7 year-old boy). "I get smacked in the back of the head with a hand, or I get smacked on the arm with a spoon," (9-year-old girl).
Many of the children believed smacking did not work as a disciplinary tool. They said that the use of time out, having privileges removed or being grounded were far more effective means of discipline. The children's responses render many adults' claims and justifications highly suspect. It is also concerning that quite large numbers of children reported adult behaviour that was in fact abusive. One of the hopes of those who supported the law reform was that it would encourage parents who love their children and want the best for them to explore other options for guiding their children's behaviour. Doing this requires moving on from a number of deeply held and understandable attitudes and emotions - coming to terms with the fact that your own loving parents hit you (they knew no better), that you may have harmed your child's development (it's never too late to change that) and that the law can be regarded as a positive move for children rather than an unwelcome imposition on adults.
Our 2007 child discipline law is only two years old - let's give it time to help New Zealand grow happy, healthy children.
* Terry Dobbs lectures at AUT University in the Institute of Public Policy and is also doing research for Amokura Family Violence Prevention Consortium based in Whangarei.
GOOD STUFF MR. DOBBS.
Labels: for the sake of the children
While news that the Play School clock has been rediscovered in, of all places, Invercargill, is most welcome, not least of all because it might be reunited with Big Ted, Humpty, Manu and Jemima at Te Papa, I was horrified to learn that Little Ted was murdered on the last day of filming:
The bear's head was blown off in an explosion on the last day of filming. Former presenter Jacqui Dean, now a National MP but then known as Jacqui Hay, was quick to deny any responsibility for Little Ted's fate this week.
"I had nothing to do with it."
So, there you have it: National MP denies all knowledge in murder of beloved bear. If Jacqui Dean didn't do it, who did? The people demand answers. She's had years to prepare for this line of questioning, and needs to do better than "I had nothing to do with it."
She should be stood down from the National caucus until such time as a full and frank account of her knowledge of the incident is forthcoming.
Thursday, August 06, 2009
Dragons by 10
The Dragons are too clinical at the moment and the Panthers conceded 32 points v the Warriors in 50 minutes. Nothing else needs to be said. Accept the Panthers will now probably win.
Storm v Cowboys
Storm by 10
The Storm very rarely lose back to back and they rarely lose at home. The Cowboys on the other hand are all over the shop.
Sea Eagles v Rabbitohs
Sea Eagles by 6
This should be a relatively tight game but the birds are a slightly better side in slightly better form so will sneak over the line unfortunately.
Bulldogs v Raiders
Bulldogs by 6
The Bulldogs are really starting to look iffy but don't be fooled by that 56-0 win by the Raiders last week. They were playing one of the worst defending sides in the NRL in decades and the Raiders pull efforts like that out now and then. But not two weeks running.
Warriors v Titans
Warriors by 12
Fuck it, you only live once.
Roosters v Tigers
Tigers by 8
Imagine the Tigers resurgence ending at the hands of the Roosters!!! And now forget it.
Eels v Knights
Eels by 8
The Eels are on a mean roll (where the hell do these things come from) while the Knights look like they have played all their football in the wrong half of the year. Good night for the knights?
Broncos v Sharks
Broncos by 2
I don't know how they'll do it but they are playing a side that also often struggles to score more than zero points. And after being utterly humiliated and at arguably the lowest point in club history there is nowhere to go but up.
Wednesday, August 05, 2009
Cheers to those 11 who rejected this dubious opportunity:
[Raise] a glass to the refuseniks, the 11 honorees who have chosen to stand upright in 21st century New Zealand. What a fine proud assemblage of fellow citizens they are: potter Len Castle, writers Witi Ihimaera-Smiler, Vincent O'Sullivan, Joy Cowley, Patricia Grace, academic, writer and veteran stirrer Ranginui Walker, actor, Sam Neill, community worker Sister Patricia Hook, former bishop of Dunedin Penny Jamieson, educationalist Sister Pauline O'Regan and former speaker of Parliament Margaret Wilson.