web analytics

Collins’ Bennett problem

Written By: - Date published: 12:13 pm, August 16th, 2012 - 22 comments
Categories: Judith Collins, law - Tags: , ,

I look forward to Trevor Mallard and Andrew Little calling Paula Bennett as a witness in their defamation suit with Judith Collins. Bennett openly admits doing what Collins has sued Mallard and Little for accusing her of doing: using ministerial powers to leak the private details of a political opponent. Bennett even says she’ll do it again. She obviously doesn’t see doing it as hurting her reputation.

Defamation is publishing a statement that hurts someone’s reputation in the eyes of the public (and the statement isn’t true, honest opinion, or privileged). So, if Bennett’s case proves that it doesn’t hurt the reputation of a minister to be known to have abused her ministerial powers to leak the private details of a political opponent, it can’t be defamatory to accuse Collins of doing exactly the same thing.

It will be hilarious to see Bennett insisting that she was right to do what Collins says it is defamatory to be accused of, that she would do it again, that’s shes proud of her actions and the public support her.

(of course, Collins suit will fail on honest opinion and Lange v Atkinson privilege anyway)

22 comments on “Collins’ Bennett problem”

  1. Chris 1

    Couple of things – first Paula Bennett and Judith Collins are different people, just because something doesn’t hurt Paula Bennett’s reputation doesn’t automatically mean being accused of that thing isn’t hurtful to Judith Collins’ reputation.

    Secondly how does honest opinion apply in this situation?

  2. DJ 2

    Not too sure how you got from “She obviously doesn’t see doing it as hurting her reputation.”

    to “So, if Bennett’s case proves that it doesn’t hurt the reputation ..”

    Pretty loose conclusion to draw.

    • Hayden 2.1

      It could be inferred from Bennett’s and English’s statements yesterday that it’s Government policy to release private information about people who publicly criticise the Government, therefore it’s difficult to successfully argue that being accused of executing that policy is defamatory. Just a possibility…

      It’s interesting to note the difference in the wider public’s reactions to each of the leaks: a number of people thought they had the right to know about beneficiaries’ income, but I don’t remember anyone arguing the same about Bronwyn Pullar, also a beneficiary, albeit of a different kind.

      • Chris 2.1.1

        Yeah I found that a bit strange as well – the only explanation I can come up with is the general public is not on the benefit so don’t mind people’s benefit information being leaked. Whereas everyone is on ACC and don’t want their own details leaked.

  3. Dr Terry 3

    It will not “hurt”her reputation so much as “Confirm”her reputation (presuming that she has any “reputation” to speak of!)

    • Murray Olsen 3.1

      Exactly. How can she prove that her reputation of being heartless, ruthless and spiteful was damaged by anything that Mallard (puke) or Little could do? A politician suing for damaged reputation is a total oxymoron.

  4. Treetop 4

    One of these ministers is a bully, the other one cannot see that the core of the problem is the sick culture at ACC and that her personal diversion is a hindrance to cleaning up a toxic government department.

  5. Both Ministers are considered bullys.
    But, I would not like to get into a shit fight with either of them.

  6. Anne 6

    Bennett hasn’t done too well thus far at Question time. The speaker described her behaviour in the House as like that of a three year old, which caused her to laugh out loud as though he was saying it as a joke. Trouble was he responded by telling her it wasn’t a joke.

    • Carol 6.1

      Yes, Anne. Methinks the Minister was a little rattled – also jumping up to answer a question before the Speaker had given her the nod to answer it.

      • mike 6.1.1

        Where can I witness this feast for the senses?

        • Carol 6.1.1.1

          Don’t know about a video of it (question time will be repeated on the Parliament channel on freeview 6pm tonight, fr those that get it).

          But here’s a transcript:

          http://www.parliament.nz/en-NZ/PB/Business/QOA/a/6/b/50HansQ_20120816_00000004-4-Poverty-Reduction-Minister-s-Statements.htm

          Mr SPEAKER: Order! …
          —[Interruption] Order! I say to the Minister do not interject. I have had enough of this today and there will not—the Minister is showing no more discipline, or less discipline, than a 3-year-old child. It will cease. I am serious.

          Jacinda Ardern: Does she agree that today 20 percent of New Zealand children live in poverty?

          Mr SPEAKER: The Hon—[Interruption] Order! I have not even called the Minister. Can I encourage the Minister to settle down.

        • Anne 6.1.1.2

          Google NZ Parliament
          Click on to ‘Watch Parliament.’
          Click on to ‘high’ or ‘low’ resolution whichever is preferable.

          Question Time (2pm – approx.3:15pm each sitting day) is replayed between 6pm and 7:30pm for those who can’t watch or miss the afternoon session.

          oops: Carol has already answered. Still some idea what to do in future…

          • mike 6.1.1.2.1

            Much thanks Carol and Anne.

            Of course I’m guessing no one will ask her what I really wish they would:

            “Would the Minister for Demonizing Beneficiaries please explain how it is that she thinks she can get away with giving the Human Rights Commission her trademark hair flick?”

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TdMlXDrbkcs

            Although I guess I already know the answer, she knows her boss won’t do a thing about it ‘cept smile and wave.

        • deuto 6.1.1.3

          The Parliament video archives on In the House are now really up to date and the videos of Question Time today are already available – here is a link. Click on it and then choose the question(s) you want to view eg Question 4 is the one where Bennett was told she was acting like a three year old at about 4.58 mins in but it is worth watching the whole video as it was ‘lively’. Her performance was slightly more restrained on question 11. Questions 2,5 and 7 are also worth watching.

          http://inthehouse.co.nz/video_archive

          • Carol 6.1.1.3.1

            I thought questions 10 & 11 were important, with Sue Moroney & Jan Logie highlighting NAct’s abysmal record on issues impacting strongly on a lot of women.

            • deuto 6.1.1.3.1.1

              I agree, Carol. Have a lot of time for Sue M and also increasingly Jan. In fact, there are more and more good (Opposition) women in the House, many of whom are first timers such as Genter. Have also seen NZF’s Asenati Lole-Taylor in action several times recently – no holding back there!

    • Carol 6.2

      And a Minister on the back foot is getting a bit of cut-through into the MSM:

      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10827418

      Social Development Minister Paula Bennett said it was not a priority to measure New Zealand’s poverty line.

      Labour spokeswoman from children Jacinda Ardern said child poverty would not be resolved if the Government would not acknowledge the scale of the problem.

      “Given Ms Bennett’s frivolous treatment of what is a hugely serious issue, the public have every right to question her commitment to it.”

      “The message is clear. Either Paula Bennett doesn’t want to admit to the scale of the problem, or she is afraid of exposing her government’s lack of progress in fixing it.”

      Meanwhile, Brent Edwards on RNZ has just delivered a report on Bennett’s telling off by the Speaker today.

      http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/political/113427/bennett%27s-behaviour-worse-than-3-year-old-speaker

      Parliament’s Speaker Lockwood Smith has given the social development minister a severe telling off as she tried to answer questions on poverty on Thursday afternoon.

      • mike 6.2.1

        “”There is no actual poverty line,” she said.”

        (Line? What line? I can’t see any line? Can you see a line?)

        “”Children move in and out of poverty on a daily basis,” said Ms Bennett”

        (If only these damn kids would make up their minds, then yeah sure, I’d do some stats on them.)

        Two very unflattering photos on that Herald article too. Good job.

  7. tracey 7

    Its a joke… All those people who derided the last pm for thinking she knew best seem hypocritically quiet right now.

  8. just saying 8

    I’ve searched the usual places including Scoop which publishes press releases from all the parties unaltered, and I can find no press release from Labour condemning Bennet’s illegal actions in relation to Fuller. I think it’s fair to assume that because a beneficary was injured (and all other beneficaries threatened with the same if they publicly criticise the government) the Labour Party has deemed that she is therefore officially sub-human, as are all beneficaries, and they will continue to refuse to oppose even illegal actions from the government harming such persons.

    I can’t even summon up contempt and anger right at the moment. I just feeling like crying at where we’ve come to, and what it means for our collective future.

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Minister celebrates while arts organisations face cuts
    Maggie Barry was full of self-congratulations for her small arts announcement in the budget, ignoring the pain that a large number of organisations are facing due to her inaction, says Arts, Culture, Heritage spokesperson Jacinda Ardern.  “The Budget delivered a… ...
    29 mins ago
  • Regions miss out again in Joyce’s Koru Lounge Fund
      The regions have missed out yet again with Steven Joyce offering just $10m a year for key regional development projects while trumpeting a bunch of re-heated announcements, says Labour’s Economic Development spokesperson David Clark. “The dairy downturn has put… ...
    23 hours ago
  • Children’s Commissioner misses out in Budget
      The Office of the Children’s Commissioner has missed out on a much needed boost in this year’s Budget, meaning they will be forced to continue their reduced monitoring role of CYFs residences, says Labour’s spokesperson for Children Jacinda Ardern. … ...
    1 day ago
  • Communities miss out in Budget
    Budget 2017 has left community and NGO providers feeling exposed about the services they provide to vulnerable families especially in smaller towns and communities, says Labour’s Whānau Ora Spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta. “Approximately $40m will go into Whānau Ora to work… ...
    2 days ago
  • Budget2016: Two Worlds
    Sometimes I feel as if I live in two worlds. The world created by the National Government where everything is great and they’re doing a great job and the world as seen through the eyes of child advocates, community workers,… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    2 days ago
  • Parekura would be proud – MTS gets boost
    The Labour Party is ecstatic that the Māori Party have shown support for one of Labour’s proudest policies, says Labour’s Māori Broadcasting Spokesperson Peeni Henare.  “The Māori Television Service was launched in 2004 by the late Hon Parekura Horomia. ...
    2 days ago
  • Māori housing in state of emergency
    The Government needs to declare a state of emergency for Māori Housing, says Labour’s Māori Development spokesperson and Te Tai Tokerau MP Kelvin Davis. “The extra $3 million a year Māori Housing Network fund will not scratch the surface in… ...
    2 days ago
  • State house sell off in disarray after provider pulls out
     The Government should cancel its planned sell-off of state houses after the second big community housing provider pulled out leaving the process in disarray, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford.  “It is time for the Government to back away from… ...
    2 days ago
  • Nothing in Budget to help police to solve crime
    The Police Minister has failed to make communities safer with virtually no new money in yesterday’s Budget for police to address the appalling burglary resolution rates, says Labour’s Police spokesperson Stuart Nash.  “It’s a disgrace there’s no money or aspiration… ...
    2 days ago
  • Blog – Budget 2016: What about ordinary working people?
    Ordinary working New Zealanders don’t fare very well from this Budget. Setting aside the spin from the Government, it contains a lot to be concerned about and a fudging of the numbers. Green Party workplace relations spokesperson Denise Roche For… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    2 days ago
  • Real wages go backwards for next two years
    New Zealanders’ real wages will fall for the next two years as the cost of living outpaces forecast pay rises, says Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little. “New Zealanders have been doing it tough for far too long. They expect… ...
    2 days ago
  • The Attack on Public Education – by a thousand cuts
    Budget 2016 is another step towards the free public education system being a memory from the past. The Budget freezes the operations grant for schools and does not sufficiently cover the real increase in numbers of students entering the education system.… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    2 days ago
  • The Attack on Public Education – by a thousand cuts
    Budget 2016 is another step towards the free public education system being a memory from the past. The Budget freezes the operations grant for schools and does not sufficiently cover the real increase in numbers of students entering the education system.… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    2 days ago
  • The give with one hand – take with the other Budget
    The Minister of Health has pumped out media releases to 20 District Health Boards heralding increases in funding for their regions, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King. “But when you add population growth and inflation into the figures you get… ...
    2 days ago
  • Budget offers no hope of fixing housing crisis
    The Budget’s underwhelming housing measures will give New Zealanders no hope that National is capable of fixing the housing crisis, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “There isn’t a scrap of an idea to help desperate young Kiwi families into… ...
    2 days ago
  • How the budget fails new New Zealanders
    Greens co-leader James Shaw was absolutely correct to say the 2016 budget is just papering over the cracks. There’s nothing in this budget to increase wages, address inequal pay for carers or deal with the shocking pay rates and employment… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    3 days ago
  • Parents will pay more as school budgets frozen
    Parents will pay more for their kids’ education as a result of this year’s Budget after the Government froze operational funding for schools, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “This means schools are effectively going backwards. They will need to… ...
    3 days ago
  • Sticking Plaster Budget fails the test
    Bill English’s penultimate Budget fails to tackle the structural challenges facing the economy – a housing crisis, rising unemployment, underfunded health and creaking infrastructure, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “This Budget applies a sticking plaster to a compound fracture.… ...
    3 days ago
  • John Key fails middle New Zealand with no fix for housing crisis, more underfunding of health
    Middle New Zealand has again missed out in this year’s Budget with not a single fix for the housing crisis, and health and education woefully underfunded again, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. “This Budget is just a patchwork… ...
    3 days ago
  • Labour Bill would back Kiwi jobs
    The Government’s $40 billion of buying power would go towards backing Kiwi businesses and jobs under a Labour Member’s Bill which will be debated by Parliament, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. “My Bill – which was pulled from… ...
    3 days ago
  • Julie Anne Genter: My Budget 2016 wish is fairness
    When my parents first visited me in Auckland ten years ago, they remarked on how there were no homeless people on the streets. Coming from Los Angeles, they were used to seeing the impacts of horrendous inequality and a lack… ...
    GreensBy Julie Anne Genter
    3 days ago
  • Steffan Browning: Pesticide reduction and Organic Growth Strategy in Budget 2016
    Pesticide reduction The Budget is an opportunity for the Government to launch a pesticide reduction strategy that multiplies the Environmental Protection Authority’s (EPA) and the Ministry for Primary Industries’ capacity to reassess pesticides and other toxins.  The Agricultural Compounds and… ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning
    3 days ago
  • Steffan Browning: Pesticide reduction and Organic Growth Strategy in Budget 2016
    Pesticide reduction The Budget is an opportunity for the Government to launch a pesticide reduction strategy that multiplies the Environmental Protection Authority’s (EPA) and the Ministry for Primary Industries’ capacity to reassess pesticides and other toxins.  The Agricultural Compounds and… ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning
    3 days ago
  • Minister won’t fess up on wrong figures
    The Minister of Health was caught out telling porkies in Parliament today when he was asked about the number of people getting access to mental health and addiction services, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King. ...
    4 days ago
  • Budget 2016 and our LGBTQI communities
    LGBTI people make up about a tenth of our population, and our communities face a unique set of needs and challenges. These challenges are caused or exacerbated by discrimination, invisibility and barriers to appropriate support. We have a long way… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    4 days ago
  • Budget 2016 and our LGBTQI communities
    LGBTI people make up about a tenth of our population, and our communities face a unique set of needs and challenges. These challenges are caused or exacerbated by discrimination, invisibility and barriers to appropriate support. We have a long way… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    4 days ago
  • Scrambled announcement policy on the hoof
    Paula Bennett’s scrambled desperate announcement that she will pay homeless people to move to the regions is just the latest evidence of the disarray this Government’s housing policy is in, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. “This is policy… ...
    4 days ago
  • Police Minister admits resolution rates fall short of expectation
    Police Minister Judith Collins has admitted in Parliament current burglary resolution rates are not meeting the expectations of our communities, says Labour’s Police spokesman Stuart Nash “Out of 284 police stations in New Zealand in 2015, 24 stations recorded zero… ...
    4 days ago
  • Mojo Mathers: A better deal for animals in Budget 2016
    Currently we are failing animals in NZ. On the face of it farmed and domestic animals in this country have strong legal protection from abuse, cruelty and neglect. In reality it seems that only the very worst, most extreme cases… ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers
    4 days ago
  • Metiria Turei: What we need from Budget 2016
    Every family deserves a warm decent home.  Everyone believes that. This housing crisis is just the latest consequence of a Government who puts the interests of the few wealthy people above the needs of NZ families.  Families are doing it… ...
    GreensBy Metiria Turei
    4 days ago
  • Dairy exports fall of 11%: Budget action on diversification needed
    Dairy exports have fallen 11 per cent compared to this time last year, a fall of almost $1.5b, showing the Government must take clear action on diversifying the economy in tomorrow’s Budget, says Labour’s Trade and Export Growth spokesperson David… ...
    4 days ago
  • Investors driving families out of homes in South and West Auckland
    Investors cashing in on skyrocketing Auckland house prices are driving families out of homes in South and West Auckland and causing homeownership rates in some of our poorest suburbs to plummet, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “New analysis shows… ...
    4 days ago
  • Budget must deliver on paid parental leave
    Budget 2016 must deliver 26 weeks paid parental leave by April 2018 – anything less will be short-changing families, says Labour MP Sue Moroney. “My Bill which is before Parliament this afternoon has majority support and does just that. I… ...
    4 days ago
  • Key’s “brain fart” on tax cuts news to English
    John Key didn’t tell his own Finance Minister he was about to go on radio and announce he wanted $3b of tax cuts, just days after Bill English ruled them out, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “In Parliament today… ...
    5 days ago
  • What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 – A better start for our tamariki
    Ensuring the best start for our tamariki is a priority for me in everything I do. And so in Budget 2016, my first budget as an MP, I looking for the Government to make a real investment in the wellbeing… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    5 days ago
  • What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 – A better start for our tamariki
    Ensuring the best start for our tamariki is a priority for me in everything I do. And so in Budget 2016, my first budget as an MP, I looking for the Government to make a real investment in the wellbeing… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    5 days ago
  • Denise Roche: What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 Pt II
    Aotearoa’s new New Zealanders,  come to our country in vulnerable position: – often away from the culture, communities and families they know, sometimes in neighbourhoods without familiar faces and often encountering barriers to employment. With net migration at 50,000+ a… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    5 days ago
  • Equal Pay and Budget 2016
    The last few years we’ve seen equal pay for women flagged as an undefined risk in the budget. This year we should expect to see this, as well as budgeted money to deliver equal pay to caregivers and funding for,… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    5 days ago
  • Equal Pay and Budget 2016
    The last few years we’ve seen equal pay for women flagged as an undefined risk in the budget. This year we should expect to see this, as well as budgeted money to deliver equal pay to caregivers and funding for,… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    5 days ago
  • A great Budget would
    A great Budget would embrace the challenge of our polluted rivers and move the money away from justifying the status quo water rules into cleaning up waterways. A great Budget would take the Ministry for the Environment freshwater budget and… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    5 days ago
  • Budget building materials policy backfires
    On the eve of this year’s Budget official figures show Nick Smith’s Budget 2014 centrepiece to reduce the cost of building materials has backfired, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment officials have spent the… ...
    5 days ago
  • Smarter, Better, Cleaner, Stronger
    This Thursday Bill English will deliver his eighth Budget. Will it continue the trend of previous National budgets, making tertiary education less affordable, putting only token funds into innovation, and subsidising polluters? Budgets aren’t what they used to be. Once… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    5 days ago
  • Govt must come clean on tax cuts in Budget
    National is making a mockery of the Budget process by dangling the promise of tax cuts but failing to include them in the Budget, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “National’s tax cut promises have turned into a farce. One… ...
    6 days ago
  • Grant Robertson Pre-Budget Speech
    Today I want to talk about success. As we know success can come in many different forms, from the fact you all made it here at such an early hour on a Monday, for which I am very grateful, to… ...
    6 days ago
  • Budget must deliver for middle New Zealand
    The Government must ensure next week’s Budget stops the squeeze on middle New Zealand and delivers shared prosperity for all New Zealanders, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. The call follows new research commissioned by Labour that shows working… ...
    7 days ago
  • Our housing emergency – why we have to act
    Marama and Metiria at Homes Not Cars launch On Thursday, Metiria Turei announced the Green Party’s plan to start addressing the emergency housing crisis facing our country. Too many people are without homes right now – homeless. It is the… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    1 week ago
  • Will funding boost for sexual violence services go to the right places?
    This week the Government announced $46million for sexual violence services. This announcement was a result of decades of work by advocates and everyone who submitted to the Select Committee inquiry into funding for sexual violence services that I initiated with… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    1 week ago
  • Will funding boost for sexual violence services go to the right places?
    This week the Government announced $46million for sexual violence services. This announcement was a result of decades of work by advocates and everyone who submitted to the Select Committee inquiry into funding for sexual violence services that I initiated with… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    1 week ago
  • Denise Roche – What I’m looking for in this year’s Budget
    Two of the things I’ll be looking for in the Budget next week are more funding for refugees and for our arts and culture sector. More funding for refugees I’m a strong supporter of the #DoubleTheQuota campaign and its goals… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    1 week ago
  • Denise Roche – What I’m looking for in this year’s Budget
    Two of the things I’ll be looking for in the Budget next week are more funding for refugees and for our arts and culture sector. More funding for refugees I’m a strong supporter of the #DoubleTheQuota campaign and its goals… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    1 week ago

Public service advertisements by The Standard

Current CO2 level in the atmosphere