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Key changes tune, orders GCSB review

Written By: - Date published: 7:15 am, October 2nd, 2012 - 71 comments
Categories: john key, Minister for Overseas Holidays, Spying - Tags: ,

Last week, Key tried to tell us that the illegal spying on Kim Dotcom – which he, the minister, we’re supposed to believe wasn’t told about for 8 months – was down to one agent’s ‘brain fade’. Uh huh. So, why has he now appointed a senior public servant to review and reform GCSB? You don’t do that when the problem was one person’s human error.

Meanwhile (and inconsistently as hell) Key says there’s no need for a Police investigation because, wait for it, ‘we know what happened’. Yeah, John, we know what happened. And what happened is that government agents spied on a New Zealander without legal authority meaning, prima facie, they broke the Crimes Act. Is Key’s new position that when you know a crime has been committed you don’t investigate it? (Does that explain the bizarre crime figures that show huge drops in certain classes of crimes in certain regions?). Key, having just told the Police not to investigate, says the choice is theirs, but it would be stupid if they did investigate. It seems Key has no problem with criminals working in his department.

[Update: Lol at Key. Police are launching a high powered inquiry after he said there was no need for one]

Key wants out. He wants to go and play the movie star on yet another overseas holiday (seriously, how much has that dude been overseas in the last couple of months – ie late summer in the Northern Hemisphere?). But he’s going to find himself stuck in this hurt locker for a while yet. The Police will investigate. They can’t not without looking horribly complicit. The internal review will reveal systematic problems that Key has denied exist while still leaving large questions about what happened in the Dotcom case unanswered because the brief isn’t to look into that case specifically. Oh, and the head of OFCANZ is going to find himself a) the subject of a Police Complaints investigation and b) perjury hearings.

And let’s not forget the donation side of this saga. Key is still governing on the vote of a man who Police said broke the Local Electoral Act and who clearly repeatedly lied to and mislead New Zealanders when he was asked about the donations he had received. Pretty soon, the OIAs that have doubtlessly been put in for Banks’ Police interview, which Banks said he gave permission to be released but Police said he hadn’t allowed them to release, will be due – and then we will either get to see the truth from Banks’ own mouth, or we will see that he really does have something to hide.

Until Key does the right thing – come clean on what really happened with the GCSB spying, even if it means his own resignation, and force Banks to release his Police interview, then fire him – Dotcom will be the albatross around his neck.

71 comments on “Key changes tune, orders GCSB review”

  1. I find it impossible to believe that National would not have approached Dotcom for a donation.  And given his largesse and his desire to rub shoulders with the rich and famous I also find it impossible that he would not have given one.

    I look forward to that information coming out at some stage in the near future.

    And this review is the “lets blame the public service” sort of review.  It should be reviewing a failure of leadership and oversight by the man who has this role, Key himself.

    And through his SIS and GCSB briefings I find it utterly impossible to accept that Key was not told repeatedly about the infamous raid.

    There is something seriously wrong here.  I look forward to the truth coming out at some stage. 

    • karol 1.1

      Agreed, Micky. At the moment it feels a bit like shadow boxing, because of the lack of transparency. But I think we need to keep asking questions.

      • Craig Glen Eden 1.1.1

        Yeah I have thought for some weeks now, how much did he give to the Waitamata trust? Key was quick to apologise “please forgive me Dot com” last week without admitting his (Keys) own role in the saga. Key distancing him self from Dot Com right at the beginning made me very suspicious.He apparently didnt know who Dot Com was until the night before the raid, really? I find that just to hard to believe! I will be very surprised if Dot com has not made a major donation to National, when and how much are the questions.

        • Colonial Viper 1.1.1.1

          Pretty sure if Key gave to Banks, he would have given to the MP of his own electorate who happens to be the PM.

          The most interesting question…why has Dotcom not come forwards with the evidence so far…and have Key’s people and Dotcom’s people been talking in the background trying to come to an accomodation?

    • Fortran 1.2

      Who says any information will be forthcoming, unless leaked ?

  2. Colonial Viper 2

    Looks like National’s internal polling on this issue turned impossible 24 hours ago, forcing their hand to act.

    • Jokerman 2.1

      And I thought of the albatross,
      And I wished he would come back, my snake.
      For he seemed to me again like a king,
      Like a king in exile, uncrowned in the underworld,
      Now due to be crowned again.
      And so I missed my chance with one of the lords
      Of life.
      And I have something to expatiate:
      A pettiness.

      -D.H. Lawrence

      (dedicated to our ignoble ‘leader’)

  3. freedom 3

    Whenever he is asked if he should have been told of any particular activity regarding the GCSB, our PM launches into the bizarre defense of ” The PM should not be deciding who gets investigated …”

    Damn right he should not be deciding who gets investigated, i think we still have a couple of laws that are meant to define that particular question, but that has nothing to do with whether he is briefed and made aware of what is going on in his own Ministry (where he was certainly being properly advised)

    He did appoint himself to the position after all, what did he think he was becoming the Minister of?

    • Draco T Bastard 3.1

      He did appoint himself to the position after all,

      Ah, no, he didn’t. As I understand it the PM is the head of our intelligence services and no one else can have it.

      • BloodyOrphan 3.1.1

        Vacancy: Director, Government Communications Security Bureau
        Resource information
        Published: 10 May 2011
        Last updated: 10 May 2011

        On 26 August 2010, Prime Minister John Key announced the appointment of Mateparae as Director of the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB). Mateparae was appointed for a five-year term commencing on 7 February 2011 but stepped down from the role on 1 July 2011.

        So who’s in charge in the Interim? and why did Mateparae step down?

        It looks like Keys announcement that he was in charge has been removed from the Herald as well.

        Great unbiased reporting going on there obviously, I wonder when he asked for it to be removed ?

        • Draco T Bastard 3.1.1.1

          Director != Minister.

          I suppose, technically, I was wrong to say “head” but the PM holds democratic responsibility for the intelligence services.

          And Mateparae stepped down as the director to become the GG.

          • BloodyOrphan 3.1.1.1.1

            See below bud, The Minister must act within those bondaries as well.

          • BloodyOrphan 3.1.1.1.2

            “stepped down from the role on 1 July 2011.”

          • BloodyOrphan 3.1.1.1.3

            “His appointment comes as a major surprise, as he has been in the GCSB role for little more than a month and his name was not among those most regularly floated as the successor to Sir Anand Satyanand, whose term ends in August.”

            “Prime Minister John Key said there was no conflict of interest with Mateparae remaining on at GCSB.”

        • BloodyOrphan 3.1.1.2

          Excerpts from the Position Description ….

          Courage The Director can be counted on to step up when times are tough. He/she anticipates potential conflicts and make conscious choices about the approach they will take. He/she is willing to take the lead on controversial issues. They read situations and people accurately.

          Organisational positioning skills
          The Director will understand the political and organisational context within which he/she works. He/she is sensitive to political processes and anticipates risks and how others may respond. He/she can manoeuvre through complex political situations effectively and quietly whilst maintaining appropriate standards of political neutrality. He/she knows how to get things done within the political and organisational context, understands the origin and reasoning behind key policies, practices and procedures and observes legality and propriety of GCSB functions.

          It’s a great document, and would outline a good man for the Job.
          Virtually every clause points to Keys failings.
          And being in a Statutary role is not an excuse , he’s our PM for goodness sake !

      • insider 3.1.2

        You understand wrong. The PM can appoint anyone to that ministry. It’s just tradition that it is usually the PM that takes it.

        • Colonial Viper 3.1.2.1

          Would’ve been better run by Tolley or Parata I suspect.

          • insider 3.1.2.1.1

            Well Parata would have cleared out the advisory staff in the first six months, twice….

            • Colonial Viper 3.1.2.1.1.1

              well, under Key they’ve been clearing out the CEO quarterly, so would that be an improvement?

        • Draco T Bastard 3.1.2.2

          Yeah, wasn’t sure if it was an actual rule or tradition. Of course, tradition is often harder to change than actual rules.

        • Dr Terry 3.1.2.3

          Maybe this is right insider, and so what? He “can” but he “didn’t”.

    • Jackal 3.2

      What pisses me off the most is the way Key always says; “I’m not in a position to answer that”. If the Minister in charge of the GCSB who just so happens to be the Prime Minister isn’t in a position to answer some pretty straight forward questions, then who the fuck is?

      Well since John Key apparently doesn’t know what’s going on in his own ministry and is taking off to the United States to hide and Bill English is in Europe, it appears nobody is actually in charge of running the country… I therefore hereby elect Ewen Gilmour to be Prime Minister. God knows he will do a better job.

  4. BloodyOrphan 4

    “but it would be stupid if they did investigate”

    Sound like a veiled threat too me.

  5. ianmac 5

    ” Key, having just told the Police not to investigate, says the choice is theirs, but it would be stupid if they did investigate.

    Well how does that fit with the Rachel Smalley interview where he said how wrong it would be if he was to tell the GCSB who to prosecute or not. And how about his charges against Ambrose?

  6. Snakeoil 6

    “Last week, Key tried to tell us that the illegal spying on Kim Dotcom – which he, the minister, we’re supposed to believe wasn’t told about for 8 months – was down to one agent’s ‘brain fade’.”

    I have yet to come across a neuropsychological description of this phenomenon.

    The closest I can find is trace decay theory ..

    ” … memories that are stored in both short term and long term memory system. According to this theory, short term memory (STM) can only retain information for a limited amount of time, around 15 to 30 seconds unless it is rehearsed. If it is not rehearsed, the information will start to gradually fade away and decay. Donald Hebb proposed that incoming information causes a series of neurons to create a neurological memory trace in the brain which would result in change in the morphological and/or chemical changes in the brain and would fade with time. ”

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

    Memory problems are often found in cases of brain injury

    http://www.npr.org/2010/06/08/127402993/military-still-failing-to-diagnose-treat-brain-injuries?ps=rs

    or alzheimers, but I doubt you would find that in GCSB.

    It is, however, often used in popular culture

    http://www.studyskillsblog.com/tips-to-prevent-brain-fade/

    and to denote cognitive deficit after use of mind altering substances such as cocaine.

    “Cocaine causes a buildup of dopamine, a brain chemical that decreases the individual nerve cells’ ability to hold moment-to-moment information.”

    http://edition.cnn.com/2009/HEALTH/01/28/memory.research/

    In short, it raises serious questions about Key’s credibility.

  7. One has to wonder if key and his associates in the dot-com fiasco are on
    ‘statins’ a medication that causes confusion,loss of memory and sometimes
    non recognition of people known to the affected pill taker.
    This review is another ‘inside’ job.

  8. captain hook 8

    what the hell is brain fade?
    it sounds like the sort of excuse some illiterate arsewipe boy racer would give for losing traction and killing someone.
    kweewee is sounding more and more like a Monkey every day.

    • Roy 8.1

      I think it is a hastily-sanitised version of the expression ‘brain fart’ which is common parlance in the US. Key probably started to say ‘brain fart’ and then thought better of it because the expression is not commonly used in NZ and would have shocked people.

  9. http://www.nbr.co.nz/article/secretary-cabinet-mop-embattled-gcsb-bc-129930#comment-586713

    MY COMMENT – YET TO BE PUBLISHED…….

    Is GCSB Director Ian Fletcher THE BOSS of GCSB Associate Director Rebecca Kitteridge – who has been seconded from her position as Cabinet Secretary for three months ‘to carry out a thorough review of the GCSB, its processes and procedures’ ?

    How ON EARTH can Rebecca Kitteridge carry out an ‘INDEPENDENT’ review of the GCSB, in her capacity as an ‘Associate Director’ of the GCSB – who presumably reports to the GCSB Director, Ian Fletcher?

    How ‘thorough’ can any review be of the GCSB, its processes and procedures’ – unless it’s carried out by somebody who is genuinely independent?

    Which GCSB Associate Director Rebecca Kitteridge, clearly is NOT?

    Penny Bright
    ‘Anti-corruption campaigner’

    http://www.dodgyjohnhasgone.com

    • BloodyOrphan 9.1

      I’d be expecting resignations from them shortly.
      Why? “That’s Off the Record”

      And of course they have to be politcally aware and quiet (according to the contract).
      No rocking the boat allowed, we have a country too run, hard place too lead from if the ultimate focus of the investigation is the Prime Minister.

  10. deuto 10

    Just up on Stuff – the Police are launching an investigation – http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/7757248/Police-launch-probe-into-spying-on-Dotcom

    Police are to investigate illegal spying on Kim Dotcom and his co-accused Bram van der Kolk.

    It emerged Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB) agents illegally snooped on Dotcom and van der Kolk in the run-up to the raid on his home.

    They are both New Zealand residents which protects them from spying.

    Independent QC Kristy McDonald will review the inquiry and advise whether charges should be laid.

    It’s likely the investigation will see Finance Minister Bill English interviewed, because of his role in signing an order to keep the involvement of the GCSB secret.

    Green Party co-leader Russel Norman laid a complaint with police last week.

    Police Commissioner Peter Marshall has asked Deputy Commissioner Mike Bush to appoint a senior police investigator to assess and investigate the complaint.

    McDonald was a senior counsel with more than 30 years experience in criminal law, Marshall said.

    “She is a highly regarded Queens Counsel who has been engaged in major prosecutions, so she will provide excellent oversight of the police work,” Marshall said.

    “We can’t put a timeframe on how long this assessment and investigation will take but it will be done as a matter of some urgency,” he said.

    They really don’t have much choice to not investigate, but why don’t I have much confidence … And that is in no way to imply that Kristy McDonald is not more than capable etc; but her role according to the above will be to “review” the inquiry rather than undertake it. In other words, to review what is put in front of her only.

    Edit – the Herald’s article. http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10837886

    Wording is a little different re McDonald’s role – to assess and review any recommendations arising from the investigation.

    Police Commissioner Peter Marshall today said a senior police investigator would be appointed to assess the complaint.

    Kristy McDonald QC had been appointed to assess and review any recommendations arising from the investigation.;

    She would then make her own recommendations to the Commissioner's office, Mr Marshall said.

    Bold is mine.

    • deuto 10.1

      Ooops – messed up the bolding and italics and it will not now let me edit. Help! And sorry.

      Herald article now updated with Key’s comments and he is not a happy chappy. Still thinks it is a political stunt.

      [lprent: Fixed, and shifted to blockquotes rather than italics. ]

      • Lanthanide 10.1.1

        Right, so it’s a political stunt when the Greens ask for an investigation into something that was clearly and admittedly illegal, but not a political stunt when Key asks for an investigation into something that couldn’t reasonably have been judged illegal (teapot tapes).

        • mike 10.1.1.1

          Key’s been using the ‘this is a political stunt by the opposition’ line for any criticism with substance for a while now. Complaining about Banks breaking the law and lying to us about it was repeatedly called a ‘politically motivated attack’.

          It’s a good way to suggest that the issue is more complex than it really is. Note that it’s pure rhetoric – no substance, no evidence, no argument, just the equivalent of saying ‘my opponent is full of shit.’

          When you’ve got two people calling each other liars the observer (in this case the public) often can only shrug their shoulders and assume that the truth is somewhere in the middle. This is often a win for the person who really is lying.

          This is a known tactic of psychopaths, (though obviously not exclusively psychopaths, they are just really good at it).

          Key’s arrogance is really showing over this. The ‘we already know what happened here (so cease this investigation talk)’ line is an example of trying to make others conform to the reality that he wants them to accept. Which is what psychopaths are doing every time they open their mouth. Just sayin’.

          • blue leopard 10.1.1.1.1

            Thanks Lanthanide and Mike for the insight.

            Your comments resounds with accuracy. This is exactly why I like to read The Standard; it is good to be continually reminded and alerted to the dirty, opinion manipulating tactics that our politicians are conducting on us.

      • deuto 10.1.2

        Thanks lprent. Must go to FAQ and work out block quotes as much easier to read.

        [lprent: <blockquote>...</blockquote> ]

    • Mary 10.2

      “McDonald was a senior counsel with more than 30 years experience in criminal law, Marshall said.

      “She is a highly regarded Queens Counsel who has been engaged in major prosecutions, so she will provide excellent oversight of the police work,” Marshall said. ”

      Yeah, that’s right, get someone with 30 years of experience working for the cops to help decide whether someone in government should be prosecuted. That’s real independence for you.

    • Dr Terry 10.3

      What’s coming then? Another police report for the PM not to bother reading?

  11. captain hook 11

    hey you catch on fast poor boy.
    do as we say not as we do.
    and dont forget that kweewee is desperately trying to protect the GG who wouldn’t give up his job on the gscb until the day before he was appointed.

  12. Logie97 12

    Question is when it’s published, will Key read the report, get Banks to read the report, or … ?

  13. I sincerely hope that the people conducting this investigation at all levels think long and hard about compromising facts in order to “save face” for anyone involved in this fiasco. Following such a course of action might be considered out of a mistaken belief that it is better that people still retain a remanent of trust in our politicians and systems, (therefore lets ‘soften’ what really went on) however I hope that on further consideration the conclusion is drawn that a sound investigation with no compromise of the truth is what is required here in order to achieve a healing of the breach of trust that has occurred; that this approach is the only option available to restore confidence.

    Truth hurts, yet lies hurt more.

    • Dr Terry 13.1

      bl – truth and lies can hurt given the right context.

      • blue leopard 13.1.1

        Dr Terry
        Lies hurt more due to the consequences involved.
        Truth supplies people with a sound basis on which to base their lives, convictions, choices etc on.
        Lies provides a made up picture of what is being lied about-a delusion; an unsound basis on which to base anything on.

  14. Treetop 14

    Key can keep telling himself that it is not necessary for him to be informed of major operational matters at the GCSB when the accountability stops with him. Appointing Mc Donald and Kitteridge will not get to the bottom of GCSB or police incompetence and/or corruption because both GCSB and the police will cover for Key.

    As for Mc Donald being appointed to assess the complaint of illegal spying on Dotcom and Bram van der Kolk I expect to see heavily blacked out pages regarding police evidence or parts of the report with held or even embargoed until after Dotcoms hearing.

  15. Tiger Mountain 15

    Kitteridge at GCSB HQ, settled into a comfy leather chair.

    “do have another snifter Becs…. Now do we really have to go there? Oh good, knew you’d you see it. Jolly good then, job and finish.

  16. john 16

    What McDonald does, she will do for anyone that pay hers, anyone that hires her wants her “special service” and of course old labour governments required cover ups. The innocence amazes me.

  17. Dr Terry 17

    Will anything come of all this? Or will it all blow over as usual?

    • Treetop 17.1

      “Not only must Justice be done; it must be seen to be done.”
      Rex v. Sussex Justices ex Parte Mc carthy (1924).

      Justice won’t be done as Key gives me the impression that human error is a good and nobel defence.

      As for being seen to be done, yeah the GCSB and the police are going to hold a press conference to explain who? what? how? and when?

      • Treetop 17.1.1

        noble is a correction. I cannot get edit to work and I make a lot of spelling errors.

  18. gobsmacked 18

    Good win for the Greens.

    Opposition parties can’t force inquiries/investigations, they can only keep the issue alive, and embarrass the government as much as possible. The police may not do much, but even today’s announcement means the story hasn’t died, while Parliament is in recess this week.

    It’s all drip-drip-drip on Key’s popularity. And that’s all National have got.

  19. Brybry 19

    Apparently the police will be able to use their new search and surveillance powers to request the Pork Board go in and sieze GCSB computers.

  20. AmaKiwi 20

    The press refuse to openly ask, “Is John Key lying?”

    The most they will do is quote Geoffry Palmer and Winston Peters about how GCSB always keeps the PM informed in detail on all the cases it is involved with.

    According to opinion polls, the majority of us don’t trust politicians. So why is it so bizarre for the press to demand the police ask the head of GCSB, “When you met with Key over that eight month period did you ever discuss Dotcom?”

    It’s a straightforward question. It answers the “key” question, “Is John Key lying?”

    • BloodyOrphan 20.1

      Check out the Job Description for the Director of GCSB.
      http://www.ssc.govt.nz/sites/all/files/Director-GCSB-Position-Description-May11_0.docx

      Acting with honour and integrity:
      The Director will maintain the highest standards of personal integrity and will promote such
      standards throughout the Bureau.

      Not honourable too bag the boss.

      • AmaKiwi 20.1.1

        Honor is about telling the truth, not about covering for your boss’s lies.

        • BloodyOrphan 20.1.1.1

          Here another definition …
          http://www.ssc.govt.nz/sites/all/files/Leadership-Capability-Profile-Nov09.pdf

          Indicators
           Models a high level of honesty, commitment, loyalty and integrity
           Reinforces the importance of ethical and equitable conduct in dealings with others
           Is consistent in what they say and do
           Displays personal values that are aligned with the Public Sector — spirit of service’
          to the government and the citizens of New Zealand
           Keeps public and private interests separate
           Serves the government of the day implementing their policies and programmes
          irrespective of personal preferences

          Problem being that Honesty and Loyalty are on the same line
          John Key does not fill any of them except the last , which is dubious considering he’s the leader.

          And another from the same doc …
          “They keep confidences and admit mistakes”.

          Confused yet? , you and everyone else is.
          Including High Court Judges and others at their level.

          Gotta love that Google.

        • BloodyOrphan 20.1.1.2

          What we need from John Key is …

          An explanation as to why he Ordered our operatives too spy on a NZ Resident,
          Namely Kim Dotcom.

          You will never get that out of the GCSB or the Police they operate under the above guidelines.
          He has been asked this question many many times, all he does is pass the buck.
          It’s not up to the Police or the GCSB to do anything about that.

          That’s our Job to put it bluntly, if the whole of NZ demanded he step down and hold a snap election, that’d be us fixing the problem.

          There is no other way.
          If we want this country to regulate our economy so the poor don’t starve, there is only one way…

          The whole of NZ demanded he step down and hold a snap election, that’d be us fixing the problem.
          There is no other way.

          There isn’t even a Job Description for the Prime Minister of this country.

          If there was we could have a read and discuss his options, at this point our employee is running mad with our money our country and it’s children.

          And we can’t sack him our employment contract wont allow us to.

          This is why we need the a civilised job description for our government and PM , which we can evaluate his performance on real time, abd sack him if necesarry

  21. Anne 21

    Mr Shearer told Parliament on Tuesday that “the police are investigating GCSB for acting illegally at the request of the police, who gave them the information that was wrong in the first place. So this is becoming very farcical.”

    He’s got a point.

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/117164/spy-agency-investigations-becoming-farcical-shearer

  22. Bob 22

    Well we have learned that John Key doesn’t read papers esp if it may compromise the truth
    But do we know if he can read?
    The sooner he finds his new job the better.
    I hope the interviews go well in California.

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  • We Are Asking the Wrong Question
    The charge sheet against John Key could hardly be more serious. If it could be shown that he had misused his position as the Minister for the security and intelligence services to discredit his political opponents and had then lied...
    Bryan Gould | 23-08
  • Is Simon Lusk a psychopath?
    National party consultant Simon LuskYou may have noticed that the mask has entirely slipped from the National parties face, taking their pretence of being honourable with it. Because of the revelations in Nicky Hager's excellent book, Dirty Politics, no longer...
    The Jackal | 22-08
  • July 14 Patronage results
    The patronage results for July are now available and they show another strong month of growth. Auckland public transport patronage totalled 72,740,387 passengers for the 12 months to Jul-2014, an increase of +0.5% on the 12 months to Jun-2014 and +5.9%...
    Transport Blog | 22-08
  • Would the real National Party please stand up
    This election campaign is turning into a joke. National, through John Key and to a lesser extent Steven Joyce, appear to be telling us either not to believe emails people from their sidewrote or that somehow a smear campaign involves...
    My Thinks | 22-08
  • A right wing conspiracy
    In just one week we've gone from the Prime Minister claiming that nothing in Nicky Hager's new book, Dirty Politics, was true to irrefutable proof that Ministers and their staff were directly involved in smear campaigns using the poisonous blog...
    The Jackal | 22-08
  • The Prime Minister responds again
    Hello there. I just wanted to spend some time to respond to some of the baseless accusations that have been flying around this week. First of all, Labour need to be ashamed about the way they have behaved. They have...
    My Thinks | 22-08
  • The most bullshit OIA response ever
    On July 30, we learned via Question Time that Murray McCully had allowed an email informing him that the Malaysian government was not waiving Muhammad Rizalman’s diplomatic immunity to sit unread in his mailbox for an indeterminate amount of time....
    No Right Turn | 22-08
  • Lucy
    ...
    Notes from the edge | 22-08
  • Sick again
    This post is part of the 100 Days ProjectDay 42I've got nothing interesting to share about the world - my temperature is up and I feel crummy - again.  It's probably nothing much, but after a week of lethargy and...
    Notes from the edge | 22-08
  • Voice-over!
    This post is part of the 100 Days ProjectDay 38Political scandles notwithstanding, I've spent the last two days learning how to be a voice artist, in as much as this is possible in a two day period.  It was a...
    Notes from the edge | 22-08
  • My mechanic is a right-winger
    This post is part of the 100 Days ProjectDay 37My mechanic is one of my favourite service providers.  On days when I have to leave my car for repair he drives me to work while telling hilarious, off-colour stories about...
    Notes from the edge | 22-08
  • Craft Kitchen
    This post is part of the 100 Days ProjectDay 36Craft Kitchen is an organic, gourmet sort of cafe which opened near the corner of Ponsonby and Great North Roads a bit over a month ago.  The first week it was...
    Notes from the edge | 22-08
  • Letter to the Editor – Transparency in government – do we have it or no...
    . . from: Frank Macskasy to: Dominion Post <letters@dompost.co.nz> date: Fri, Aug 22, 2014 subject: Letters to the Editor . The Editor Dominion Post . Some National Party supporters are keen to over-look allegations of wrong-doing and dirty politics in...
    Frankly Speaking | 22-08
  • Letter to the Editor – Transparency in government – do we have it or no...
    . . from: Frank Macskasy to: Dominion Post <letters@dompost.co.nz> date: Fri, Aug 22, 2014 subject: Letters to the Editor . The Editor Dominion Post . Some National Party supporters are keen to over-look allegations of wrong-doing and dirty politics in...
    Frankly Speaking | 22-08
  • Letter to the Editor – The Marianna’s Trench or Pluto?! WTF was Key hol...
    . . from:      Frank Macskasy to:           Sunday News <editor@sunday-news.co.nz> date:      Fri, Aug 22, 2014 subject: Letter to the editor . The editor Sunday News . He says he doesn’t know about Judith Collins...
    Frankly Speaking | 22-08
  • Letter to the Editor – The Marianna’s Trench or Pluto?! WTF was Key hol...
    . . from:      Frank Macskasy to:           Sunday News <editor@sunday-news.co.nz> date:      Fri, Aug 22, 2014 subject: Letter to the editor . The editor Sunday News . He says he doesn’t know about Judith Collins...
    Frankly Speaking | 22-08
  • Letter to the Editor – Just what is the Prime Minister’s role?!
    . . FROM: Frank Macskasy SUBJECT: Letter to the Editor DATE: Fri, 22 Aug 2014 TO: The Listener <letters@listener.co.nz. . The editor The Listener . John Key says he knew nothing about the activities of his one-time media consultant, Jason...
    Frankly Speaking | 22-08
  • Letter to the Editor – Just what is the Prime Minister’s role?!
    . . FROM: Frank Macskasy SUBJECT: Letter to the Editor DATE: Fri, 22 Aug 2014 TO: The Listener <letters@listener.co.nz. . The editor The Listener . John Key says he knew nothing about the activities of his one-time media consultant, Jason...
    Frankly Speaking | 22-08
  • A life working for social justice, David Shearer
    I believe New Zealand can be the best country in the world, where everyone can get a fair go and anyone prepared to work for it can achieve their dream....
    Labour campaign | 22-08
  • Key’s pathetic excuses
    Aug 15, 2014Aug 18, 2014Aug 18, 2014Aug 19, 2014Aug 20, 2014...
    The Jackal | 22-08
  • Ancient ocean currents may have changed pace and intensity of ice ages
    This is a re-post from the National Science Foundation Climate scientists have long tried to explain why ice-age cycles became longer and more intense some 900,000 years ago, switching from 41,000-year cycles to 100,000-year cycles. In a paper published this...
    Skeptical Science | 22-08
  • Is Whale Oil a journalist (2)?
    Some time ago, I wrote about Cameron Slater’s claim to be a journalist, which he is invoking for the purposes of protecting his confidential sources. The District Court ordered him to turn over his sources in a defamation case brought...
    Media Law Journal | 22-08
  • Government considering starting CRL on time
    I’ve long suspected the realities surrounding the City Rail Link and its close relationship to some of the biggest development projects in Auckland would in some ways force the governments hand and require an earlier start than 2020. Yesterday the...
    Transport Blog | 22-08
  • Poll of polls
    Polity's poll of polls is up to date, over at the Poll of Polls page. The short version, good to use as a more-or-less pre-Dirty Politics baseline, is: National: 50.4% Labour: 26.4% Greens: 12.0% NZF: 4.6% InternetMANA: 2.3% Conservative: 2.1%...
    Polity | 22-08
  • Primary Teachers Rise Up!
    I have been a primary teacher for 35 years and for over half of that time I have been an active member of the New Zealand Educational Institute, New Zealand's largest education union. NZEI Te Riu Roa represents 50,000 members, including...
    Local Bodies | 22-08
  • Friday melts, weird weather and whales (it’s been a long time…)
    It’s been a long time since my last post: apologies for that. You may blame a bad cold, an urgent need for root canal work, the peak of the truffle season (and truffle tours for culinary heroes1 ), the start...
    Hot Topic | 22-08
  • John Key’s Top 69 Lies – Today No. 29: It’s a left-wing smear campaig...
     Key: 'Left wing smear campaign'   Key continues to back Collins    John Key is wrong. He is not the victim of a smear campaign, and here's why: First, let's define "smear campaign". Wikipedia: A smear campaign, smear tactic or simply smear is...
    Arch Rival | 22-08
  • How Many National MPs are Corrupt?
    Reading through the ‘dumps’ of information allegedly showing Scumbag Adulterer Cameron Slater’s messages with National Party Hacks, there is a lot of discussions about money changing hands, Tobacco Companies making ‘donations’, and so on. Not only has Key’s Office and...
    An average kiwi | 22-08
  • Tolley feeds Slater too
    Because of Nicky Hager's excellent book, Dirty Politics, we know that a number of senior National party officials and Ministers have been caught out supplying information and content to the Whale Oil Beef Hooked blogsite, information that Cameron Slater uses...
    The Jackal | 22-08
  • Unsurprising
    No bloggers have signed up to join the Online Media Standards Authority. This isn't really surprising. For a start, membership costs $500 a year (and ten times that if too many people complain) - well beyond the means of most...
    No Right Turn | 22-08
  • Nelson fishing museum satire or not?
    Apparently, unless Fairfax is now taking on The Civilian in the field of satirical news, the Minister of Conservation Nick Smith and fishing magnate Peter Talley are planning a fishing museum in Nelson. And the Minister considers this "ambitious new...
    Greenpeace NZ blog | 22-08
  • Steering By The Real: Chris Trotter Responds To Paul Buchanan.
    Uncharacteristically Idealistic: Normally a cool-headed realist (as befits an expert in international relations) Dr Paul Buchanan has taken issue with Chris Trotter's "cynical" Bowalley Road posting Dirty Politics - Is There Any Other Kind? by offering a passionately idealistic defence of...
    Bowalley Road | 22-08
  • This should not have taken five years
    Back in 2009, after the Herald was given information showing that National MP Kanwaljit Singh Bakshi was suspected by the Immigration Service of paying off a woman at the centre of allegations he had made bogus job offers, Immigration Minister...
    No Right Turn | 22-08
  • Poll of Polls update – 22 August 2014
    The latest Herald Digipoll has just been released, and with a polling window running from 14 August to 20 August, the entirety of the polling was completed following the release of Dirty Politics. The results show a sharp fall of 4.9% for National. However,...
    Occasionally erudite | 22-08
  • Hard News: In The Green Room
    Next Thursday, John Key and David Cunliffe will meet in the first TVNZ leaders' debate. At the same time, Green Party co-leaders Metiria Turei and Russel Norman will appear in The Green Room, a "companion" debate streamed live online.I'll be...
    Public Address | 21-08
  • Walking in Manukau
    Just over a month ago I was out at Manukau City, at the open day of the new MIT, which doubles as Manukau station. This is a brilliant facility, with world class integration of land use and transport. If you...
    Transport Blog | 21-08
  • World News Brief, Friday August 22
    Top of the AgendaThai Junta Leader Appointed PM...
    Pundit | 21-08
  • Housing under National: the facts
    1.       House prices in Auckland Council valuations indicate Auckland house prices have gone up by one-third over the last three years. (Auckland Council) The average Auckland house price has gone up by nearly $225,000 since 2008, up over $75,000 in...
    Labour | 23-08
  • Labour irons out low income tax issue
    The increasing casualisation of work has led to many New Zealand families being disadvantaged through the tax they pay, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. "Many low paid workers are having to work two or three jobs to make ends meet...
    Labour | 22-08
  • Cornered Government comes out swinging
    The National Government is so desperate to keep its dead-in-the-water expert teachers policy alive, it has refused to rule out forcing schools to participate through legislation, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “John Key today attacked the Educational Institute for...
    Labour | 22-08
  • Pacific people continue to go backwards under National
    A report from Victoria University highlights the fact that Pacific people are continuing to go backwards under a National Government, said Labour’s Pacific Affairs spokesperson Su’a William Sio.  “The report shows the largest inequality increases were in smoking, obesity, tertiary...
    Labour | 22-08
  • Wellington transport plan needs to keep moving
    The failure of the Transport Agency to properly look at alternatives to the Basin Reserve flyover is not a good reason for further delays to improving transport in Wellington, Labour MPs Grant Robertson and Annette King say. “The Board of...
    Labour | 22-08
  • Labour’s focus on inequality, kids and better job prospects
    Tackling child poverty and removing barriers to people working part time to enhance their prospects of moving into a fulltime job are highlights of Labour’s Social Development policy. Releasing the policy today, spokesperson Sue Moroney said while part-time work was...
    Labour | 21-08
  • Political staff should give answers under oath
    The Inspector General of Security and Intelligence should use her full statutory powers to question witnesses under oath about the leak of SIS information, says Labour MP Phil Goff. “Leakage of confidential information from the SIS for political purposes is...
    Labour | 21-08
  • High dollar, hands-off Govt sends workers to dole queue
    The loss of up to 100 jobs at Croxley stationery in Auckland is devastating news for their families and the local Avondale community, Labour’s Employment, Skills and Training spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “The company’s inability to compete in international markets...
    Labour | 21-08
  • National’s flagship education policy dead in the water
    National’s plan to create executive principals and expert teachers is effectively dead in the water with news that 93 percent of primary teachers have no confidence in the scheme, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “The fact that teachers are...
    Labour | 21-08
  • Dunedin will be a knowledge and innovation centre under Labour
    Dunedin will become a knowledge and innovation centre under a Labour Government that will back local businesses, support technology initiatives and fund dynamic regional projects, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. “Nowhere has the National Government’s short-sightedness been more apparently than...
    Labour | 21-08
  • Inquiry into SIS disclosures the right decision
    Labour MP Phil Goff says the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security has done the right thing by launching an inquiry into the disclosure of SIS documents about a meeting between himself and the agency’s former director-general. “This inquiry is necessary...
    Labour | 20-08
  • Labour – supporting and valuing carers and the cared for
    Placing real value on our elderly and the people who care for them will be a priority for a Labour Government, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. Releasing Labour’s Senior Citizens policy today David Cunliffe promised that a Labour Government would...
    Labour | 20-08
  • By Hoki! It’s Labour’s fisheries policy
    A Labour Government will protect the iconic Kiwi tradition of fishing by improving access to the coast, protecting the rights of recreational fishers and reviewing snapper restrictions, Labour’s Fisheries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “Catching a fish from the rocks, beach...
    Labour | 20-08
  • Mighty River – Mighty Profits – Mighty hard to swallow
    Mighty River Power’s profit increase of 84 per cent is simply outrageous, says Labour’s Energy spokesperson David Shearer. “Demand for electricity is flat or declining yet the company has made enormous profits. It is the latest power company to celebrate...
    Labour | 19-08
  • Collins’ actions were wrong, not unwise
    John Key’s moral compass remains off-kilter as he cannot bring himself to declare Judith Collins’ actions outright wrong, not simply ‘unwise’, said Labour MP Grant Robertson. “Under pressure John Key is finally shifting his stance but his failure to condemn...
    Labour | 19-08
  • Public servants behaving with more integrity than their masters
    The State Services Commission's new report on the integrity of our state services reflects the yawning gap between the behaviour of public servants and that of their political masters, Labour's State Services spokesperson Maryan Street says. “This report, which surveyed...
    Labour | 19-08
  • Phil Twyford Speech to NZCID
    "Labour's plan to build more and build better: how new approaches to housing, transport and urban development will deliver cities that work" Phil Twyford, Labour Party spokesperson on housing, transport, Auckland issues, and cities.  ...
    Labour | 19-08
  • Labour commits to independent Foreign Affairs and Trade
    “Labour is committed to New Zealand’s Foreign Affairs and Trade policy being independent and proactive, Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson David Shearer says. “We are a small but respected country. Our voice and actions count in international affairs. Labour will take a...
    Labour | 19-08
  • Key must sack Collins over abhorrent actions
    The latest revelations that Judith Collins sent the contact details of a public servant to WhaleOil in a desperate attempt to divert media attention from a bad story is abhorrent, Labour MP Grant Robertson says. “John Key and Judith Collins...
    Labour | 19-08
  • It’s downhill from here under National
    The forecast drop in exports and predicted halving of growth shows that it’s downhill from here with National, Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker says. “Growth under this Government peaked in June and halves to two per cent in coming years....
    Labour | 19-08
  • John Key loses moral compass over Collins
    John Key has lost his moral compass over Judith Collins’ involvement with Cameron Slater and lost touch with New Zealanders’ sense of right and wrong, Labour MP Grant Robertson says. “Whoever is Prime Minister there are expectations they will not...
    Labour | 18-08
  • Mana Movement General Election 2014 List confirmed
    The MANA List is now confirmed with all the candidates as below (the numbers are the respective Internet MANA rankings). Candidate, Electorate, Internet MANA List Position Hone Harawira, Te Tai Tokerau (1) Annette Sykes, Waiariki (3) John Minto, Mt Roskill (4) Te Hamua Nikora, Ikaroa-Rawhiti...
    Mana | 18-08
  • PREFU likely to confirm dropping exports
    National’s economic management will be put under the spotlight in tomorrow’s PREFU given clear signs the so-called rock star economy has fallen off the stage, with plummeting prices for raw commodity exports, Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker says. “Under National,...
    Labour | 18-08
  • Record profits while Kiwis face a cold winter
    The record profits by two of New Zealand’s largest electricity companies will be a bitter pill for New Zealand households who are paying record amounts for their power, says Labour’s Energy spokesperson David Shearer. “No doubt the Key government will...
    Labour | 18-08
  • Time for John Key to answer yes or no questions
    John Key’s train-wreck interview on Morning Report shows he is no longer capable of a simple yes or no answer and has lost touch with what’s right and wrong, Labour MP Grant Robertson says. “John Key has become so media...
    Labour | 18-08
  • Key must clarify who signed out SIS OIA
    Yet again John Key is proving incapable of answering a simple question on an extremely important issue – this time who signed off Cameron Slater’s fast-tracked SIS OIA request on Phil Goff, said Labour MP Grant Robertson. “John Key’s claim...
    Labour | 18-08
  • Time to invest in our tertiary education system
    A Labour Government will fully review the student support system – including allowances, loans, accommodation support and scholarships – with a view to increasing access and making the system fair, transparent and sustainable, Labour’s Tertiary Education spokesperson Maryan Street says....
    Labour | 17-08
  • Labour will facilitate regional Māori economic development agencies
    The next Labour Government will facilitate the creation of regional Māori economic development groups lead by iwi and hapū to work in partnership with business and public agencies as part of its Māori Development policy. “Labour is committed to working towards...
    Labour | 16-08
  • PRIME MINISTER’S DENIAL AT ODDS WITH NATIONAL PARTY STATEMENT
    Labour’s New Zealand Council has today released an email from the General Manager of the National Party that directly contradicts recent statements from the Prime Minister in relation to the 2011 breaches of Labour Party website databases. In his stand-up...
    Labour | 16-08
  • Labour committed to a healthier NZ for all
    A Labour Government will shift the focus of the health system from narrow targets and short term thinking to make public health and prevention a priority, Labour’s health spokesperson Annette King says. Releasing Labour’s full Health policy today she said...
    Labour | 15-08
  • Time Key took responsibility for Collins
    It is well past time for John Key to take some responsibility for the misuse of power and information by his Minister Judith Collins, and follow through on his last warning to her, Labour MP Grant Robertson says. “The evidence released...
    Labour | 14-08
  • Dear John, time to answer a few questions… – Harawira
    “When Cameron Slater says about Kim Dotcom ‘I have lots on him…death by a thousand cuts…wait till you see what comes out in coming weeks on that fat c***t’, you have to ask whether this is the same Cameron Slater...
    Mana | 14-08
  • MANA CANDIDATE FOR IKAROA RAWHITI OPENS UP ABOUT SUICIDE
    “This week suicide has claimed yet more lives in whanau and communities in Ikaroa Rawhiti, and my heart goes out to those who are dealing with such a tragic loss”, says MANA candidate for Te Ikaroa Rawhiti, Te Hamua Nikora....
    Mana | 14-08
  • Offshore betting in Labour’s sights
    A Labour Government will clamp down on offshore gambling websites that deprive the local racing industry of funds, Labour’s Racing spokesperson Ross Robertson says. Releasing Labour’s racing policy today, he said betting on offshore websites is a major threat to...
    Labour | 14-08
  • Key has serious questions to answer on Dirty Politics
    John Key must answer the serious questions raised in Nicky Hager’s new book which reveal examples of dirty politics that New Zealanders will be deeply concerned about, Labour MP Grant Robertson says. “Many people will be disturbed by the evidence...
    Labour | 14-08
  • Creating an inclusive society for disabled people
    A Labour Government will provide free annual health checks for people with an intellectual disability, Labour’s Disability Issues spokesperson Ruth Dyson said today in announcing Labour’s Disability Issues policy. “We will also employ another 100 additional special education teachers and...
    Labour | 14-08
  • Media Advisory – MANA name change
    This is to advise all media that on the 24th of July the ‘Mana’ party name was officially changed to ‘MANA Movement’ under the Electoral Act 1993.  The inclusion of the word ‘Movement’ in our name shouldn’t come as a surprise...
    Mana | 13-08
  • New Zealand must help in the growing Iraq crisis
    The humanitarian crisis in Iraq looks certain to get worse before it gets better,” said David Shearer Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson. “New Zealand should urgently pledge increased humanitarian assistance to United Nations agencies and NGOs present on the ground....
    Labour | 13-08
  • Allegations of migrant worker rort should be investigated
    Labour is calling for an investigation into the alleged exploitation of workers at Hutt Railway workshops, hired to repair asbestos-riddled DL locomotives. Hutt South Labour MP Trevor Mallard has written to the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment asking that...
    Labour | 13-08
  • Medical and dentistry students get reprieve under Labour
    A Labour Government will restore the right of medical and dentistry students to get student loans after seven years of study because it is the right thing to do, Labour’s Tertiary Education spokesperson Maryan Street says. “Hard on the heels...
    Labour | 13-08
  • National must stop meddling with ACC before the election
    The redesign currently occurring at the Accident Claims Corporation (ACC) for sensitive claims needs to be put on hold immediately, said the Green Party today.The Green Party is concerned about work currently underway at ACC involving the sensitive claims service...
    Greens | 13-08
  • Markets slow but first home buyers still hurting
    First home buyers are hurting more than ever as the supply of affordable houses in the market dries up, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Reserve Bank will be happy LVR minimum deposits and rising interest rates have dampened...
    Labour | 13-08
  • Green Party celebrates MOU win on contaminated sites
    The Green Party is celebrating the announcement of a national register of contaminated sites today, and $2.5 million to start cleaning two sites up. The Green Party and the National Party agreed to include toxic site management work in their...
    Greens | 13-08
  • Emergency staff at breaking point
    The Southern DHB is so cash-strapped it is failing to fill nursing rosters, Labour’s Associate Health spokesperson David Clark says.  “Every day emergency department nurses arrive at work knowing they are likely to be carrying more than their recommended workload. ...
    Labour | 12-08
  • ACC minister fails in mission to change culture
    The latest damning report by the Auditor General shows that the ACC Minister has failed to fulfil her mission to fix the sick culture at ACC and real change will not come till a new Government is elected, the Green...
    Greens | 12-08
  • Labour’s regional development fund to support Palmerston North
    Labour will consider a proposal to develop an inland port at Palmerston North, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. “The Palmerston North community has developed plans for an inland port which will bring jobs and economic growth to a region which...
    Labour | 12-08
  • Green Party announces priorities for Christchurch
    The Green Party has today announced its plan for a fairer, smarter and more democratic Canterbury rebuild, with a focus on smart transport solutions, restoring local democracy, and keeping Christchurch's assets.The plan sits across all of the Green Party's priorities...
    Greens | 11-08
  • Rock-star economy unplugged by China log jam
    The collapse of log prices due to oversupply in China threatens to wash the gloss off what remains of National's so-called rock-star economy, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “Already this year the price of milk solids has plunged by more...
    Labour | 11-08
  • Young job seekers dealt a poor hand
    National's "keep 'em poor" card for young people on a benefit is a sorry substitute for job training, Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Sue Moroney says.  The Government today announced it would extend its payment card scheme to all teen parents...
    Labour | 11-08
  • Labour – achieving change for Kiwi women
    Working towards being a world leader in eliminating violence against women and children will be a priority for a Labour Government. Releasing Labour’s Women’s Affairs policy today spokesperson Carol Beaumont said while Labour had a proud track record of achieving...
    Labour | 11-08
  • A Matter of Whether John Key is Credible
    Headline: A Matter of Whether John Key is Credible Analysis by Selwyn Manning. Prime Minister, John Key.WITHIN NATIONAL’S STRATEGY TEAM there is an acceptance that the facts revealed in the book, Dirty Politics, is chewing away at the party’s popular...
    The Daily Blog | 23-08
  • TDB Political Diary for 2014 Election
    Here are the political events TDB will be covering this election. I will be live tweeting these events and  blog reviews will follow the next day. Internet MANA launch – August – Sunday 24th – 1pm, Western Springs School Green...
    The Daily Blog | 22-08
  • One man’s struggle to find a copy of Dirty Politics
    I’m typing this on top of Dirty Politics.  I got the last copy yesterday morning at the local branch of a chain bookshop.  I was really in to get the paper.  I know it sold out – everyone knows - but the first thing...
    The Daily Blog | 22-08
  • From Tucker to Key – while you were out
      From Tucker to Key – while you were out...
    The Daily Blog | 22-08
  • Amnesty International – Justice is not Blind in Ferguson
    When a US cop pulls a gun on an unarmed man, he could be acting upon a series of impulses that have been formed since before he or she could talk. What does that police officer see in front of...
    The Daily Blog | 22-08
  • Putting an end to zero-hour contracts in 2015
    All around the world attention is being drawn to what have been dubbed in the UK “zero-hour contracts”. These are contracts that don’t have any guaranteed hours even though the worker may be regularly employed. Unite Union has been struggling...
    The Daily Blog | 22-08
  • NZ’s Foreign Aid: The Party Policies Compared
    For the past two elections, I’ve cast my vote based on a single question, which party promises to give the most money in foreign aid? I grant that this is a fairly narrow and simplistic lens through which to judge...
    The Daily Blog | 22-08
  • Steering By The Real: Chris Trotter responds to Paul Buchanan
    WHEN ACADEMICS take to blogging the rest of us best be careful. And when they offer comment on the subject of dirty politics we should all pay attention. I will always remember my history lecturer, Dr Michael Cullen’s, confident dismissal...
    The Daily Blog | 22-08
  • Interview Between Selwyn Manning & Sean Plunket Over SIS Release of OIA...
    During a RadioLive interview between host Sean Plunket and managing director of Multimedia Investments Ltd, journalist Selwyn Manning, a fiery exchange developed after Plunket attempted to “wet flannel” the issue of whether the Prime Minister has been truthful over what...
    The Daily Blog | 22-08
  • “Even though my hours are being cut, my rent doesn’t get cut to compens...
    Fast Food = Slow Pay   Lola is a manager at a major fast food chain. Last year her employer arbitrarily cut her hours from 32 hours to anywhere between 18 and 26 hours each week. “I said I can’t...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Hate Politics has no place in NZ Politics
    I wasn’t going to write about Nicky Hagar’s ‘Dirty Politics’.  There are plenty of policy issues to discuss. Then I read the book, and what it reveals strikes at the very heart of our democracy. My overwhelming feeling is one...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Pak’nSave pull adverts from Whaleoil
    Pak n Save have replied to complaints that their adverts were appearing on hate speech site Whaleoil by deciding to block their adverts from appearing on the site. Their reply… Congratulations for Pak’NSave on making this type of ethical stand. They...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Herald Poll – Why the Greens will hit 15%
    The biggest problem for John Key is that there are swathes of National Party voters who are educated and decent people whom will be forced to read Dirty Politics out of intellectual curiosity and will be horrified by what National...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Coalition for Better Broadcasting – Dirty Politics and Dirty Media
    The Nicky Hager book is mind blowing on so many levels. The revelations of government ministers and their staff colluding with vile and hateful schemers to attack other people, is truly ugly. When the dust settles on the illegalities, immoralities...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • “You just have to keep on fighting” – an interview with Metiria Turei
    We’re meeting in her office. It’s austere, though she does have a nice teapot. The view is startling. One can map the Bowen Triangle, though the teapot is still more interesting. A group of pink faced men are running across...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Taxation and Real Estate – turning housing debate on its head
    The debate about property prices in New Zealand is disingenuous. It is clear that there is a global process in which speculators are using massive amounts of unspent and borrowed money to blow bubbles in the world’s major asset markets....
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • GUEST BLOG: Michael Wood – Faith and politics
    In a week which has seen our collective focus shift to those who see politics as a great game to be manipulated for their own ends, it is timely to reflect on the fact that many people are in fact...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Government’s Own Guidelines Show John Key Would Have Been Informed Of SIS...
    Analysis by Selwyn Manning. INFORMATION THAT I HAVE ACQUIRED, sourced from the State Services Commission, states in black and white the tight guideline requirements that must be followed whenever the SIS informs a Prime Minister of any pending release of...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Simply Not Credible: Dr Tucker’s “clarifications” are only making thi...
    THAT DR WARREN TUCKER, Director of the Security Intelligence Service in 2011, agreed to the release of politically sensitive material – thereby intervening in an on-going contretemps between the leaders of the National and Labour parties – without receiving the...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • The Donghua Liu Affair: Evidence of Collusion between the NZ Herald and Imm...
    . 1. Prologue . The Donghua Liu Affair hit  the headlines on 18 June, with allegations that David Cunliffe wrote a letter in 2003,  on  behalf of  business migrant, Donghua Liu. Four days later, on Sunday 22 June, the Herald...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Dear Canon NZ – Malevolence should induce revulsion, it shouldn’t be ce...
    Giovanni Tiso’s analysis on Slater is possibly the best in NZ… It’s been a good week for some of us. A week of feeling vindicated, offeeling galvanised. Where it goes from here will depend on several factors, some of which are largely...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • 5AA Australia: After Dirty Politics Can National Provide Stable Government?
    AS WE ALL KNOW New Zealanders and Australians do not like political parties that are unstable, or can no longer assure us that they are able to provide stable government. And the big question for Kiwis as we prepare to...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • SIS letter means it’s over for Key
    It’s over. I may not agree with all of Phil Goff’s positions, but you can’t question his integrity the way Slater did in Dirty Politics and not be deeply concerned that our Secret Intelligence Agency is being used for political...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • who to vote for in Epsom
    who to vote for in Epsom...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • The Rise and Fall of John Key – who will be the next leader of National P...
    . . It was all set to go: Teamkey would be the cult of personality that would do Stalin, Mao, Reagan, Thatcher, or any of the Nth Korean Kim Dynasty, proud.  National and it’s “Teamkey” propaganda strategy   would cash-in Big Time...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • Who said Kiwis couldn’t get a fire in their bellies over an arcane intern...
    An amazing team of activists has taken the campaign on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) to local governments throughout the country. Their latest triumph came last Monday when the Dunedin City Council endorsed a resolution expressing concern about the TPPA...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • National’s Dangerous Education Agenda Exposed
    Putting aside the dirty politics coming out of the Beehive and the right-wing blogisphere, there are some very strong signals that another term of a National Government would do even more serious damage to the public education system. The Education...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • We can have clean politics and get our democracy back.
    Something is rotten in our politics and it stinks. Dirty politics has sadly become one of the defining features of this election campaign. In the light of recent revelations about the extent of nasty and disingenuous political strategies, it would...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • Book burning copies of Hager’s book? The next generation of National Part...
    It seems we are getting the next generation of National Party Dirty Politics now. There are claims the Young Nats in Hamilton are buying up copies of Dirty Politics and burning them. One witness was contacted by the Waikato Times...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • National Party Poetry Day Haiku
    Key’s inbox and Cam’s poison most foul, there he blows hoist by own harpoon...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • Why Cunliffe will be the next PM
    David Cunliffe will be the next Prime Minister of NZ. Labour’s inclusive and positive TV adverts… …are in stark contrast to National’s team of white people powering away from the rabble of the ‘others’… …the messaging is vital and crucial...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • From smiling assassin to grumpy butcher – on giving Judith Collins a last...
    After #dirtypolitics Key isn’t the smiling assassin, he is the grumpy butcher. When he said Judith had  a ‘last chance’ he meant 1 second after voting closes on 20th September. Key would love nothing more than to cut Collins loose and end...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • If the National Party rowing advert was real….
    If the National Party rowing advert was real there would be more blood in the water. If the National Party rowing advert was real it would be Cameron Slater calling the strokes. If the national Party rowing advert was real,...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • Cameron Slater: Zionist and political pundit
    It is hard to know where to start with right-wing blogger Cameron Slater (Whale Oil), especially after the release of Nicky Hager’s book Dirty Politics. This confirmed everything many of us thought Slater to be: a snivelling pundit who serves...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • Bryce Edwards stood down from Herald for election season??? Are the editors...
    I only found this out via twitter last night and I am still in shock. Bryce Edwards, easily the best critical thinker and news analyst the NZ Herald has has been stood down by the NZ Herald ‘for the election...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • So who’s a “conspiracy theorist” now?!
    . . As the media storm over Nicky Hager’s book, “Dirty Politics“,  and allegations over smear campaigns continue to swirl,  National’s spin doctors have given Key, Collins, and other National Party ministers a string of  phrases to use in all...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • Momentum shift
    When you are deeply immersed in a local campaign sometimes it can be difficult to see the helicopter view.   I don’t know how accurate the political polls are and have always known that things can change quickly in politics...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • Dear Toby Manhire. Bad call on backing Farrar
    Oh dear. I say this as someone who regards Toby Manhire as one of the smartest journalists/commentators/columnists this country has, and I think Toby has made a terribly dumb call here. Let’s see if Toby is still singing Farrar’s praises...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • Radio NZ apologise to me for getting it wrong
    Radio NZ have contacted me, reviewed the claim by their host that I had an advance copy of Nicky Hager’s book and they have concluded they got it wrong, they have called me and apologised and will make a statement...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • GUEST BLOG: Reclaim UoA – Students’ Message to Steven Joyce
    Tertiary Education – we’ve been sold a lemon  A group of 30 students attended an event on Tuesday evening about ‘the future of tertiary education’ at which the Minister of Tertiary Education Steven Joyce was slated to speak. As Joyce...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • Can someone in the media please ask the PM of NZ to categorically deny any ...
    Now we see the MO of Slater & Co, the setting up, the digging for dirt, the use of staff to dig that dirt, can the Prime Minister of NZ categorically deny any National Party staff worked with Cam Slater...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • Panic setting in for National as they realise what’s about to happen
    And the terror starts to set in. I’ve never seen blind panic like this before  and it’s spreading as the enormity of what’s about to happen starts to sink in. Hager’s book is a mere entree, Nicky’s personal ethics wouldn’t...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • Hager’s Dirty Politics: what the book ultimately reveals is abuse of powe...
    Guide to the many faces of John Key Nicky’s book is now doing what I suspected it would do, create a shockwave of revulsion. Andrew Geddis over at Pundit Blog sums up this attitude best, and it’s reverberations build with every...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • Fancy taking children seriously
    Let’s see why all political parties should pay close attention to the Green Party’s policy for children. First, it is a comprehensive attempt to put children, not ideology, at the heart of family policy. Wow, children at the heart of...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • Amnesty International: Dear Azerbaijan, Stop Torture, Love Kiwi Kids
    This is a world where many adults often underestimate Generation Y. Being only a few years out of being a teenager myself, I feel I can make this statement with certainty. However, I have been the Youth Intern at Amnesty...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • GCSB meetings today in Christchurch 1pm at Uni 7pm at Cathedral
    The 2014 GCSB meetings to discuss the mass surveillance state legislation passed by this Government will be debated in Christchurch today at two different meetings. 1pm at Canterbury University bottom floor James Height Building: Chair: Bomber Bradbury Ruth Dyson – Labour Party...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • Things that 7 Sharp should probably be talking about
    Things that 7 Sharp should probably be talking about...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • Guide to when Key is lying
    Guide to when Key is lying...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • GUEST BLOG: Kate Davis – The State of the Student Nation …or is just Al...
    Students politics are dead and our student media is in terminal decline. The most disappointing thing about university is the politics, or should I say lack of? I was raised with the idea that students held the power.They were the...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • Love Lifts Us Up: Thoughts from the Green Party’s campaign launch.
    Author Eleanor Catton wants people to give their party vote to the Greens.Photo by Peter Meecham NO ONE WAS QUITE SURE how he did it. Somehow Bob Harvey had persuaded the owners of the rights to Joe Cocker’s Up Where...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • The Nation Environment Debate with Amy Adams & Russel Norman
    Lisa Owen: Now, this week's campaign debate. As a handful of islands at the bottom of the world, New Zealand is an environmental treasure, and as Kiwis, we're proud of being clean and greenish. But putting that environment to work...
    Scoop politics | 23-08
  • The Nation: Debate Between Amy Adams And Russel Norman
    Lisa Owen Hosts an Environment Debate Between National’s Amy Adams And Russel Norman From the Green Party....
    Scoop politics | 23-08
  • Travel And Accommodation Determination for MPs Released
    The Remuneration Authority today released its determination covering Members of Parliament New Zealand accommodation, travel services for family members, and travel services for former Prime Ministers and their spouses....
    Scoop politics | 23-08
  • Te Kuiti man imprisoned for images of young children
    A Te Kuiti man caught with pictures of children being sexually abused has been sentenced to ten months imprisonment. Sickness beneficiary Daniel James Parry, 35, appeared for sentence in the Tauranga District Court today (Friday) after pleading guilty...
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • Japan Maritime Training Squadron visit – Open Day, Band
    • The Japan Maritime Self-Defence Force Training Squadron will make port in Auckland from Wednesday 3 September to Saturday 6 September...
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • MP Perk Transparency Needed
    The Taxpayers’ Union is slamming the increase in taxpayer-funded entitlements for MPs and their families published on the legislation website this afternoon . Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says:...
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • Debating the future of Auckland’s housing
    With only weeks until the General Election, Auckland’s mounting housing crisis will be put under the spotlight in an Election Debate hosted by the School of Architecture and Planning at the University of Auckland. The debate’s topic “Market forces...
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • Let’s sort this out – Human Rights Commission
    A Whangarei woman allegedly censured for greeting customers with Kia ora can get in touch with the Human Rights Commission says Race Relations Commissioner Dame Susan Devoy. “We really need to resolve these kinds of issues. I had thought that...
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • Aged Care Association welcomes Labour’s wages policy
    The New Zealand Aged Care Association welcomes the Labour Party’s announcement that if elected, it will raise the minimum wage for aged care workers within its first 100 days in Government....
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • Honorary doctorate for Secretary-General of the UN
    An Honorary Doctor of Laws degree is to be bestowed on His Excellency Mr Ban Ki-moon, Secretary-General of the United Nations, by the University of Auckland on Wednesday 3 September, both in recognition of his role as an international statesman...
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • Surveillance of Mr Upul Jayasuriya
    The New Zealand Bar Association joins the International Bar Association (IBA) and other Law Societies and Bar Associations worldwide over the reported surveillance of Mr Upul Jayasuriya, President of the Bar Association of Sri Lanka....
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • Bob Parker, China State Media and Tibet Forum
    Former Christchurch mayor was signed up to position statement without his knowledge; observed “happiness” in Tibet as Tibetan protesters elsewhere shot by security forces...
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • “Walk the talk to reduce the wage gap”
    There’s just a few weeks left to convince the candidates of all political parties that reducing the wage gaps makes good sense....
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • Digital Currency on the Drawing Board
    Government policies and digital currency ideas and issues will come together at three public workshops next week....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • NZ Cycle Trail welcomes $8 million fund
    Government funding of $8 million to maintain and enhance the Great Rides of New Zealand will help ensure the trails are delivering the best possible visitor experience, says Evan Freshwater, Manager Nga Haerenga The New Zealand Cycle Trail Inc. (NZCT)....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Judges Comments Bonkers – McVicar
    Napier Conservative Party Candidate Garth McVicar is accusing a Judge of forgetting that he is the gate-keeper for the community and not a benevolent caregiver for law breakers. "The comments by this Judge are not just alarming, they're completely...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Oxfam: World must suspend arms sales to protect civilians
    As the New Zealand Government prepares to ratify the global Arms Trade Treaty, and after ceasefire talks collapsed and violence erupted yet again in Gaza yesterday, Oxfam is calling on all states to immediately suspend transfers of arms or ammunition...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Degrees in Picking up Rubbish
    Responding to the Fairfax media report of a University of Otago survey of Wellington’s street-connected walkways, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says:...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Another Union row
    “ The teachers union the NZEA is getting ready for another industrial dispute. These disputes now only occur in the government sector. National has no one to blame but themselves” said ACT Leader Dr Jamie Whyte....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Whyte: Speech to Grey Power
    National’s failure to increase the age for super and reform health is a threat to every New Zealander’s security....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Local Govt should not go into business
    “No one should take any comfort from the fact that “Infracon”, a roading company in Tararua and Central Hawke's Bay, is to go into liquidation. This puts the future of more than 200 jobs in doubt. ACT sympathises with those...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Join the hikoi to end child poverty in New Zealand
    CPAG is calling on people across society to join a march from Britomart to Aotea Square in Auckland to demand action on child poverty in Aotearoa....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Ngapuhi Chair Says Enough of the Political Sideshow
    Time for side-shows to end so we can focus on future of our nation – Raniera (Sonny) Tau, Chairman, Te Runanga A Iwi O Ngapuhi...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Commissioner of Police v Kim Dotcom And Ors
    An order is made extending the duration of the registration of the restraining orders issued by the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia on 10 and 25 January 2012 and registered in New Zealand on 18...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Labour Announcement on Future of Hillside Workshops Welcome
    Labour leader David Cunliffe’s announcement in Dunedin today that a government led by his party would re-open Hillside Railway workshops was welcomed by the Rail and Maritime Transport Union (RMTU). ‘Since the workshops were shut down in late...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Primary teachers and principals vote to put kids first
    Teachers and principals have voted overwhelmingly against the Government’s controversial “Investing in Educational Success” policy, including proposed highly-paid principal and teacher roles....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Prime Time with Sean Plunkett: Educating for Success
    In all the turmoil stirred up by the "Dirty Politics" revelations, the real issues that the campaign should be about have been put to one side....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Dirty Politics – Number One Bestseller and Back in Stores
    An exposé of the hidden side of New Zealand politics, Nicky Hager's book, Dirty Politics , has been in hot demand since its release last Wednesday....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Epsom: profiling NZ’s most controversial electorate
    Welcome to the wealthy inner Auckland electorate of Epsom: home of coat-tailing, the Tea Tapes, a convicted outgoing MP... and heavy newspaper and magazine readership....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Families Free From Violence campaign and website
    We are pleased to announce the launch of our Families Free From Violence campaign and our new Families Free From Violence website. This website has been created to encourage people to take responsibility for ending family violence by seeking help...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • PSA And DHBs Reach Settlement on Five Collective Agreements
    The 20 District Health Boards are pleased to reach settlement via mediation on five Multi Employer Collective Agreements (MECAs) with the Public Service Association for 12,000 mental and public health nurses, allied, public health and technical staff,...
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Refusal to complete census results in 46 convictions
    Failing to fill out a census form has resulted in the convictions of 46 people, Statistics New Zealand said today....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Council Amalgamations Still Bad Deal
    Northland, Bay of Plenty, and Wellington ratepayers should not be seduced into accepting the amalgamation of their Councils by a recent amendment to legislation allowing for local boards not community boards, Chris Leitch, Democrats for Social Credit...
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • DHB industrial action withdrawn
    The Public Service Association (PSA) has withdrawn notices of industrial action covering 12,000 health workers at District Health Boards (DHBs) across New Zealand, after progress was made in mediation....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Aged Care Pledge Needs Better Target, Says Care Agency
    Labour’s pledge to set up an aged care working group to address industry concerns is good to see, but appears to skirt the obvious issue of a looming lack of beds and carers for our rapidly growing elderly population, says...
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Social inequality still rife in New Zealand
    Social inequality has worsened over the past decade in New Zealand, a new study from Victoria University of Wellington shows....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Working towards a living wage and more Māori in paid work
    The Māori Party will build on the gains it has already achieved in Government and accelerate job opportunities particularly for young Māori....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Deepwater Group Supports Changes to Catch Limits
    The Deepwater Group says the increase in the Total Allowable Commercial Catch for hoki shows the benefits of a long term commitment to build biomass in this major New Zealand fishery....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • ACT announces Ohariu candidate Sean Fitzpatrick
    “Our Ohariu candidate will be Sean Fitzpatrick. Sean has strong ties to the region and I’m glad to hear he will be doing his best to grow ACT’s party vote in the area,” says Dr Whyte....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • ACT announces Tauranga candidate Stuart Pederson
    “Our Tauranga candidate will be Stuart Pedersen. Stuart has strong ties to Tauranga and I’m glad he has agreed to do his best to grow ACT’s party vote in the electorate,” says Dr Whyte....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Green Party scores massive own goal
    Green Party scores massive own goal as their own policy auditor criticises their fiscal plan...
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Green Party’s own Auditor of their Budget finds it dodgy
    “The Alternative Budget released by the Green's does not even stack up in the eyes of their chosen auditor – Infometrics” said ACT Leader Dr Jamie Whyte....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • New shark finning laws fall short for threatened species
    Environmental groups are welcoming some aspects of a raft of law changes announced today in relation to shark finning, but say that overall the chance for New Zealand to catch up with international efforts in shark conservation is being missed....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Promoting Labour’s Positive Policies
    General Secretary of the New Zealand Labour Party, Tim Barnett, today launched Labour’s television advertisements for the 2014 election. The advertisements help tell Labour’s positive story for a better New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Drug Court: Rare Insight into New Alternative Justice Model
    Māori Television’s latest New Zealand documentary presents a fascinating look inside a new alternative justice model – through the stories of convicted criminals....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Political parties pledge to increase overseas aid
    A survey of political parties looking at how much New Zealand should spend on Official Development Assistance (ODA) shows the overwhelming majority of parties are committed to raising the bar according to the Council for International Development (CID)....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Top Kiwis backing Tip the Scales campaign
    Sir Graham Henry, former All Black Kees Meeuws, singer-song writer Jamie McDell and fishing guru Matt Watson have pledged their support to Tip the Scales, a pre-election campaign generating public support for rebuilding New Zealand’s depleted inshore...
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Maritime Union continues to press over dirty politics
    Maritime Union National President Garry Parsloe says Ports of Auckland management is trying to get off the hook from its involvement with extreme right wing bloggers during the Ports of Auckland dispute....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • No end in sight to overwhelming human cost of conflict
    Two ceasefires have brought some respite to civilians in Gaza and southern Israel, amid hope that a durable cessation of hostilities might occur. In Gaza, these breaks in the fighting have barely given people enough time to seek medical care,...
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Young Kiwi speakers to represent NZ at Gallipoli 2015
    The RSA is delighted at the announcement made by Veterans' Affairs Minister Michael Woodhouse today, that all eight regional finalists of the 2015 ANZ RSA Cyril Bassett VC Speech Competition will be included in a group of 25 Youth Ambassadors...
    Scoop politics | 20-08
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