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Open mike 02/03/2012

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, March 2nd, 2012 - 47 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post. For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the link to Policy in the banner).

Step right up to the mike…

47 comments on “Open mike 02/03/2012”

  1. Jenny 1

    Concerned rest home resident join their carers strike in support

    Time to hit the employers where it hurts them most?

    The rest home workers reminds me of the tragedy of the Zimbabwe health service.

    We all know in our hearts that the rest home workers who care so much for patients, that they will never leave them for long, have very little leverage with the money men.

    The plight of the rest home workers doing an extremely difficult job on minimum wage, cuts no ice with them.

    Rally to support the Watersiders; Stop the Ports.

    Health care workers have no leverage with the policy makers. To get this leverage they need to link up with powerful industrial allies who can really get the employer’s attention.

    This is the lesson of Zimbabwe.

    Zimbabwe had the best public health system in Africa. Under IMF austerity, the Mugabe regime cut wages and public services relentlessly. The well organised nurses union staged powerful strikes which left the government and employers unmoved.

    The authorities response was to let these services run into disrepair, further cutting wages and included mass redundancies of nurses doctors and other care workers.

    The best public health service in Africa was dismantled and wrecked.

    (that is why so many Zim nurses and doctors had to come here)

    The lesson is, those who care for our health and well being as a society have no leverage with the money men.

    Similarly here, the rest home workers don’t have the needed leverage to win. (But they have numbers.)

    The wharfies have leverage in buckets, but being only 300 they lack the numbers to win.

    It is a problem crying out for a solution.

    Sooner or later the union movement will need to respond collectively, against the rising tide of employer militancy, or face following the Zimbabwe example.

    Why not now?

    The Port dispute could be the perfect opportunity for a collective fight back against the rising wave of employer militancy.

    If hundreds of rest home workers descended on New Zealand’s biggest and busiest port, – The Ports employers and the Auckland Chamber of Commerce and the EMA will be immediately be on the phone demanding that the rest home employers settle with their workforce.

    In my opinion the employers may have collectively made a serious tactical blunder in launching all these attacks at once. It could force all the different unions to consider ways of working together against a common enemy

    Rally at Britomart Saturday March 10, 4pm March to the picket at Teal Park.

    All the meat workers and rest home workers and their supporters, need to meet up with the Ports workers, on Saturday March 10, for a rally at the Britomart centre then make their way to Teal Park for speeches to put their relative cases.

    Close the Port, until the employers agree to retreat from their collective attack on working people.

    Lift the meat workers lock out.

    Settle with the rest home workers.

    Don’t contract out the Ports.

    No doubt the union movement will be accused of holding the country to ransom. But, if that is what it takes.

    All the meat workers and rest home workers, need to meet up with the Ports workers, on Saturday March 10, for the rally at the Britomart centre, then make their way to Teal Park for speeches to put their relative cases.

    Help us Save Our Port –

    Join us to rally to Save Our Port and stand up for job security for the port workers and their families and for a publically owned sustainable and successful port.

    This is an issue for all of us – casualisation is not good for workers or their families. This is a growing story of working in New Zealand – even when workers already offer a lot of flexibility, they are expected to give more, and often to give up any hope of a structured and healthy life.

    Support the port workers, meet at Britomart at 4pm, Saturday 10th March. Entertainment and speeches at Teal Park to follow.

    Public Event . By SaveOurPort.com

    • Hi Jenny

      I have a sense that the planets may have lined up and there may be significant developments today in the POAL dispute for the better.

      But even if POAL is solved there are the other battles to win.

      But time will tell …

  2. Carol 2

    For those outside Auckland who miss their Stratos fix, Triangle TV is now streamed live online:
    http://www.tritv.co.nz/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=154:triangle-tv-live-online&catid=38:featured&Itemid=53

  3. Te Reo Putake 3

    Great start to the day, it’s hard to beat hanging out with working people full of righteous zeal and anger making a stand against a smug and vicious boss. Plenty of toots from the public, support from passersby and even sympathy from the police tasked with maintaining the peace.
     
    Looking forward to another picket line this afternoon. Different town, same message: When workers’ rights are under attack, STAND UP, FIGHT BACK!

  4. ianmac 4

    “Warwick B. Elley: Education system’s weak spot” A reference to a learned well informed external OECD report released last week.
    National Standards are destroying New Zealand Primary schools.
    The OECD report gives 5 succinct criticisms of the damage NS are doing.

    These include lack of training and the huge vagueness of wording.
    Lack of moderation which makes inter-school comparisons meaningless.
    “Lack of articulation” between NS and the modern well developed popular National Curriculum.
    The way in which meaningless results will be used including the coming curse of League tables.
    The marginalising of other curriculum ares like music, art, social studies, and science.
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/opinion/news/article.cfm?c_id=466&objectid=10789078
    Hat tip Millhouse.

    • aerobubble 4.1

      National standards is like any employer-employee dispute. If you can water down what your staff does then you don’t need to pay them as much. Of course National standards are short on details, and the education department doesn’t want teacher import. Your average teacher will get better the more middle class kids that enter their class. Your capable teachers however will put more effort into teaching kids that are going cause the largest jump in national standards and thus take time away from those students that suck up learning and could have done with a inspiring teacher experience.
      So National Standards is a bad tool, and will reward the wrong teaching styles, we need a few exceptional kids to get some attention and breed the next level of economic activity.

  5. marsman 5

    John Key wants to entrust the NZ Public Service to an overseas corporation. We know we can’t trust John Key but can we trust Google? What would Google do with any information gleaned, use it for profit? :-

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2012/mar/01/google-privacy-policy-changes-eu

  6. muzza 6

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=10789269

    Something to look forward to perhaps? This is what happens when peoples live get ruined, and they have nothing left to lose!

    • Bill 6.1

      Mark Ames’s book ‘Going Postal’ makes the same argument (that stress levels from job loss etc lead to this type of situation).

      But something overlooked is that in most (all?) of these situations, the person involved in random and unpredictable shootings has been on (and is not taking as prescibed or is trying to get off) psychotropic meds.

      In the piece you link to there are possible pointers to the guy suffering withdrawal from the old happy, happy pills …”The gunman had worked as an employee at our factory in Komotini, between July 20, 2000 and Aug. 31, 2011, when he was dismissed, after displaying an unstable, inappropriate, and delinquent behavior over a long period of time in the workplace,” the plastics company, the Athens-based Helesi Corp., said in a statement.

      Presumably didn’t exhibit worrisome behaviour when he first got the job…ie, they didn’t sack him after eleven years worth of ‘unstable and inappropriate’ behaviour.

      And it also quotes someone as saying “His colleagues told me that he had not eaten anything in four days.”

      I know there are other reasons why some-one might not eat for four days, but withdrawal is one reason. And we know it wasn’t the stress of being fired that precipitated ‘unstable, inappropriate and delinquent’ behaviours….those were the reasons he was fired.

      So either the guy is just yet another random nutter who more or less ‘suddenly popped up’ ( and don’t the media just love that shit!) or he’s another victim of withdrawal from psychotropic meds. I’d like to know more of his recent medical history, but on what I’ve read, I know where I’d be placing my bets at the moment.

      • muzza 6.1.1

        Good observations Bill – not just psychotropic , but also the painkillers such as tramodol, which ive seen work very badly with lithium, resulting in sleep deprovation, and sparadic, violent outbursts. Hey but we can just ban or heavily regulate “foods”, and natural remedies!

      • Jackal 6.1.2

        You could just as easily say that the neurotoxins from manufacturing plastics for eleven years started to effect his cognitive functions.

        I would not dismiss the fact that the man was under increased stress because of the financial situation he was in, and that is the main factor for the violence. Sure, psychotropic drugs can have a detrimental effect, but dismissing the fact that the dismissal led to the attack with speculation about the effects of his medication isn’t all that credible.

        Keep in mind that the company had said they would re-hire the man, and then said he was dismissed because he was displaying unstable, inappropriate, and delinquent behavior over a long period of time. Why would they offer to re-hire him if that was truly the case?

        • Bill 6.1.2.1

          You could just as easily say that the neurotoxins from manufacturing plastics for eleven years started to effect his cognitive functions.

          Sure, you just as easily say such a thing. And if there were multiple instances of such behaviour deriving from working in and around plastics, you might even have a point. And if every poor b’stard who ‘went postal’ had experienced exposure to plastic fumes and so on, you might have a point too.

          But plastic isn’t the common feature present in those who have gone postal. Coming off of prescribed psychotropic medication or not keeping the dose regular does seem to be a feature in all these incidents.

          It isn’t argued that stress played a part. But the nature of the reaction is lacking in sense or logic. If he had shot the boss and taken out some workmate who had been pissing him off, then fine. there is a logic present.

          But in instance after instance the behaviour is incredibly random…shoot the waitress in the cafe next door along with the cleaner at work and a passing stranger.

          And that is entirely different to targetting those who you feel are responsible for your situation (eg, the boss, a politician etc), or of targetting those who you feel responsible for (your spouse, children or other family members).

          It’s the unpredictability and the fact that these ‘going postal’ situations are people doing stuff that has no precedent that makes all the difference. And the common factor (in case you missed it) is psychotropic meds.

          • McFlock 6.1.2.1.1

            But how do you differentiate between those whose behaviour is the result of withdrawal effects from medication, as opposed to those people who really should have stayed on their meds because it was the meds that were helping them not to go postal prior to the event?
                   

            • Bill 6.1.2.1.1.1

              Mcflock. If you come off these meds ‘properly’ it is a long process. When I say they have come off them, I mean they have stopped taking them in an abrupt fashion.

              And if you want to peddle the line that these meds are what prevent people going postal, then you are, at the very least, going to have to indicate some ‘going postal’ events prior to the introduction of these meds. So (guessing) sometime before the early 80s?

              • Jackal

                Bill

                And if every poor b’stard who ‘went postal’ had experienced exposure to plastic fumes and so on, you might have a point too.

                Actually Bill, I do have a point. You’re ignoring the fact that many of the fumes from manufacturing plastic have a neurotoxic effect on humans. Those that are exposed to eleven years of exposure to neurotoxic fumes are likely to have behavioral problems.

                What about the argument that he cold have been listening to heavy metal music, and the lyrics inspired him to “go postal”? What if he was playing violent video games?

                The obvious conclusion is the one mentioned in the article… money is the problem. Therefore the blame can also be attributed to the governments economic bungling, just as much as the the guy who “went postal”. Government’s are responsible for creating a climate where such behaviour is more likely to occur.

                I think your “how to” argument re meds is a red hearing.

  7. Pascal's bookie 7

    Garth McVicar loves Arizona sheriff Arpaio, on account of chain gangs pink underpants and rows of tents. I do wish NZ media would ask him about the fact that guy is just about always under some sort of investigation himself.

    No surprise that he’s a birther:

    http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2012/mar/1/sheriff-arpaio-obama-birth-certificate-forgery/?utm_source=RSS_Feed&utm_medium=RSS

    • ianmac 7.1

      I guess many Republicans rely on faith rather than reason. I believe and therefore it is true. Weird eh?

  8. Uturn 8

    Last night Kim Dotcom said asked people foolish enough to be watching Campbell Live, “What is piracy?” He said piracy is the result of Hollywood sending movie trailers to European countries 6 months before the film is released. If Hollywood would either supply the films everywhere in the world at the same time (or presumably not send trailers) then fourteen year old boys who like movies wouldn’t need to download films “illegally”. He said piracy is caused by an outdated economic model, supported by the US government, FBI, and others, but a model irrelevent to the age of the internet.

    Some interesting thought processes going on there. Do you agree with what he says?

    • ianmac 8.1

      The point he was making and you avoided Uturn, was that the Hollywood and other companies were failing to keep up with technology. He was not justifying illegal downloading. He was pointing out that if those companies made the stuff available at a fee most people would buy in in the same way that I-tunes Store has made music downloading possible and affordable. If the complaining companies got on board everyone would be happy.
      His problem is like that of a bus driver. Passengers pay the fare. But it is not the driver’s concern that the passenger is carrying something illicit, unless the problem is exposed. Mr Dot Com is the bus driver not the passenger..

    • KJT 8.2

      I believe it is up to the rights holders to stop expecting the law to protect a failed business model.
      Knowing a few teenage illegal down-loaders who would be happy to pay a reasonable fee to download.
      They have already stopped illegal downloads of music since Itunes, and other legal downloads became available. 
      The estimates of money lost is way out also. Many of the downloaded movies are such crap no one would ever pay to watch them.
      On my part I object strongly to having to pay again, because of DRM, to use music I have already paid for several times in different formats. I do download digital copies of music, I already have on CD’s, tapes or LP’s, so I can play it.
       

      • shorts 8.2.1

        music is still heavily downloaded ‘illegally’

        its easy to pay for mainstream commercial releases… not so if you have tastes that aren’t chart focused – plus the digital stores are built by computer programers (read I loathe itunes but still use it) not designed for music enthusiasts/punters – a major flaw and fail in itself

        I’m a massive music fan and consumer… and the only place I can find an entire bands discography is in places I shouldn’t be, legally. Please note I appreciate the complexity of multiple rights holders owning differing parts of catalogues

        youtube and file sharing opened up a world of songs, acts and music that I would never have known existed and parts of artists catalogues (and acts themselves) I would never have been allowed to and continue to be denied

        its getting better in the paid world but its still a rubbish experience for a consumer/fan

      • Jim in Tokyo 8.2.2

        Yes I though he had a strong point regarding the inflated damage claims used to pad out the FBI indictment:

        “If you read the indictment and if you hear what the Prosecution has said in court, at least $500 million of [claimed] damage were just music files and just within a two-week time period. So they are actually talking about $13 billion US damage within a year just for music downloads. The entire US music industry is less than $20 billion”

        Some other key points raised by Kim in the interview:

        Megaupload users signed comprehensive EULAs prohibiting infringing use, and the Electronic Communication Privacy Act limited Megaupload’s ability to police its own users’ private files, so the whole system was set up to rely on the DMCA takedown process.

        Furthermore, Megaupload granted back-end access to studios to allow instantaneous takedowns, above and beyond the DMCA mandated process.

        So as far as I can see, the US case is going to be based on the fact that Megaupload used smart caching technology which allowed infringing files to remain hashed on a central server even after individual links had been taken down due to a DMCA complaint, so that the next time someone tried to re-upload an infringing file they got a fresh batch of links to the cached file.

        His technology was pushing the limits of the law, but this is by no means a slam-dunk.

        • Jackal 8.2.2.1

          The federal indictments against Kim Dot Com are based on Megaupload gaining a financial reimbursement for the data that is being shared, while the copyright owners are not reimbursed. The question is who owns the data storage, the person who sets up the business or the people purchasing the space on the servers. Clearly the people purchasing the data storage are responsible for the content they upload. However any residual responsibility is debatable.

          Kim Dot Com argued his point well, and highlighted the problem of the sheer amount of data that would need to be overseen to ensure copyrighted material would not be distributed. It is the same problem the production industries have, in that it would take a huge capital expenditure to ensure their copyright was not infringed. The DMCA is clanky and even a direct access to remove data would take considerable time and expense. It is likely to be financially not worth while.

          The United States has been waging a considerable war against file sharing and have closed down a number of prominent file sharing companies, so Kim Dot Com shouldn’t feel singled out. US authorities actually think they can win the war and have expended billions on their idealogical pursuit at the behest of the all powerful American movie and music industries. All they are achieving is a few bloody battles and repression of inovation.

          What should happen is the production industries involved need to contact the respective file sharing companies in an attempt to remodel their business models so that the copyright holders are reimbursed. It will likely mean a reduction in profits, but that is happening anyway… so they have nothing to lose.

      • Jenny 8.2.3

        If only, during the first decade of the last century, the the failing buggy whip industry had the political clout to be able to rely on draconian enforcement to protect their industry.

        Those few who still need buggy whips could be paying $thousands a-piece.

        And if a jockey needed a buggy whip and instead decided to buy a cheap Chinese made copy, he could be facing some serious jail time.

    • Draco T Bastard 8.3

      http://www.everythingisaremix.info/watch-the-series/

      The current economic model is one of restriction but, as sharing becomes easier, that model fails. What we’re seeing now in FTAs (TTPA etc) is an attempt by the few to maintain those restrictions and thus the wealth that they accumulate through those restrictions.

  9. Jackal 9

    Cathy Odgers factually deficient

    Again the prickly pear has written an entire post based on her dubious speculations, rallying against Kim Dot Com’s profound argument with factually deficient innuendo…

    • ianmac 9.1

      Kim Dot Com presented a pretty persuasive defence. Until some clear evidence of wrongdoing appears to contradict that then I would stick with him and laugh at Cactus Kate’s delirious rants.
      If he is guilty then so is Google, Youtube, Itunes and every other similar site.

      • shorts 9.1.1

        the campbell interview was really good… but everything Mr Dotcom said could have been covered by our media weeks ago (without the need for the interview at all) as its all out there for anyone to find (I use google) but alas they were too busy creaming their pants over helicopters and police raids and the lifestyles of the rich and megafamous

        • aerobubble 9.1.1.1

          There has to be more too it than, dotcom setup a massive server to store files for downloading.

          Personally if ISP made it easy they could supply some server side disc space for their users and so then the dotcom would not have a market. And tracking copyright abuse easier.

          But it maybe something like dotcom wasnt as pro-active enough??!#@@

    • KJT 9.2

      What’s new?

  10. Simon O 10

    A good feature story with photo!

    “We won’t let Talley’s AFFCO split our family”

    Press release: Friday 2 March, 2011 at 12:00 noon

    “We won’t let Talley’s AFFCO split our family”

    Kerry Whare, his wife Rangi and two children Maraea and Kerry Junior all work at AFFCO Horotiu in Waikato.

    The Talley’s owned company gave Maraea, 21, and Kerry Junior, 22, lock out notices on Tuesday morning, but not their parents.

    Mrs Whare, 53, is a skilled labourer and has worked at the site for 14 years. She says she feels like the company is trying to split their family.

    “Talley’s AFFCO only negotiated for 10 hours face-to-face with our union before trying to split up my family,” she says. “We’ve always been solid as a family and we’re not going to let it happen.”

    Mr Whare, 55, is a multi-skilled worker and has worked at the plant on and off for 25 years. He says he feels gutted that he drove into work yesterday while his kids were out of work.

    “It’s heart breaking driving into work while your kids are locked out,” he says “I don’t know how the company chose to only lock out some of the workers including my kids and not others, but I suspects it is to create divisions in the workplace,” he says.

    Mr and Mrs Whare went on strike for 24 hours from 5am this morning in solidarity with their children and will picket through to the afternoon.

    Mrs Whare says the family was concerned about loosing a further two incomes, particularly since wages have been lower than usual due to low stock numbers and because they are paying off two cars.

    “We’ve got no choice to strike in solidarity – you’ve got to stand with your kids”, she says.

    Kerry junior says he always wanted to be like his dad and work in AFFCO which the main employer in Ngarawahia.

    “I’ve worked hard for the company and I feel like I’ve been stood on and spat out,” he says. “I feel discriminated against.”

    Maraea, 21, is a labourer and has worked at the plant for four years. She says she is “dead broke” because she just had her 21st and the lockout will make things worse.

    “I love my job and its sucks that I cant come back in because I’m locked out,” she says. “I’d rather be at work, but it was their decision and as far as I’m concerned I’ve done nothing wrong.”

    Kerry Junior, 22, is a cutter and has worked at the plant for six years. He say they have little prospect for work in Ngarawahia, a small struggle town in rural Waikato with few jobs.

    “We haven’t even been told when we can go back to work,” he says. “If we could find any jobs here, they’re not going to employ us because they wouldn’t know when we’d go back to AFFCO,” he said.

    Mrs Whare says she always instilled in her kids that the only way they get anywhere is to work hard and earn a decent wage.

    “What sort of message is Talley’s AFFCO giving to our kids by locking them out?,” she says. “We just want the company to lift the lockout and let our kids go back to work,” she says.

    The Whare family has worked at the meat processing plant for a combined 49 years and have other family at the plant.

    The Whare’s uncle, Dan Solomon, was a union member at Horotiu and passed away last night. His hirst stopped opposite the picket this morning in his honour.

    ENDS

    For more information contact Meat Workers Union media liason Simon Oosterman on 021 885 410.
    Free hi-res photos available at: http://www.flickr.com/photos/simonoosterman/sets/72157629491961701/with/6798954298/

  11. Rusty Shackleford 11

    http://www.edrants.com/andrew-breitbart-pillar-of-hate-and-distortion-dead-at-43/comment-page-1/#comment-280608

    Why does the left hate this guy so much? I’ve read a lot of bile and hate from the left about him this morning but haven’t actually come across any reason behind it. Other than he says things they don’t like or they disagree with.

    • McFlock 11.1

      Hate him? I don’t even know him!
            
      Although the link you posted to seems to suggest that the things they disagreed with what they felt he was saying involved racism and homophobia. Shameful how intolerant “the left” can be…

      • Rusty Shackleford 11.1.1

        I had never heard of him either. Just that ‘respected’ commentators like Matthew Iglesias are coming out and tweeting hateful things about him. So, he must have been somebody.

        He may well have been an intolerant person, but it doesn’t make the left look good when some of its respected members are coming out and acting hateful and intolerant.

        As I said, I don’t know anything about the guy. He was a conservative, of which I am not.

        • McFlock 11.1.1.1

          Meh. 
            
          “The left” has its fly down?
          Bugger. Thanks for that, we’ll get onto “the left’s” little red hotline and tell folks to zip up.
             
          I think you’ve probably found the answer as to why the guy might have pissed some people off. 
               
          Personally, someone needs to be worse than a bit of a nutbar for me to get schadenfreude at the thought of their passing, though. 
             

          • Rusty Shackleford 11.1.1.1.1

            I know the left isn’t an amorphous entity that every member of subscribes to identical philosophies. The same way that everybody who isn’t on the left doesn’t fall in the RWNJ category.

            Frankly, I still don’t know why he is so hated. I haven’t seen any clear cut examples. I’ve seen him talk about people of different race and sexual preference but does that automatically translate to racism and homophobia?

            “…someone needs to be worse than a bit of a nutbar”
            Exactly. I cheer when murderers stop living, but people who simply say things I don’t like or disagree with? Not so much.

            • McFlock 11.1.1.1.1.1

              but then we tend to disagree with how damaging words can be, I think.

            • millsy 11.1.1.1.1.2

              So do you think homosexuality should be recriminalised, like that guy did then?

  12. FYI

    “OPEN LETTER/request for ‘Public Input’ at Auckland Council Tenders and Procurement Sub-Cttee to be held on Tuesday 6 March 2012 at 8.30am Auckland Council Chamber.
    Inbox

    Chair
    Auckland Council Tenders and Procurement Sub-Cttee:
    Dick Quax

    Dear Dick,

    This is a formal request for ‘Public Input’ at Auckland Council Tenders and Procurement Sub-Cttee to be held on Tuesday 6 March 2012 at 8.30am Auckland Council Chamber.

    In my considered opinion as an ‘Anti-Corruption campaigner’ that Auckland Council tendering and procurement processes are potentially fraught with ‘conflicts of interest’ and corrupt practices.

    My ‘subject matter’ will include the following points from the Occupy Auckland-endorsed ‘Draft ACTION PLAN’ discussion document against ‘white collar’ crime, corruption and corporate welfare.

    “6. Make it a lawful requirement for a publicly-available ‘Register of Interests’ for NZ Local Government elected representatives.”

    QUESTION: Does Auckland Council have a ‘publicly-available ‘Register of Interests’ for elected representatives?

    “8. Make it a lawful requirement for a publicly-available ‘Register of Interests’ for NZ Local Government staff, and Directors and staff employed by ‘Council-Controlled Organisations (CCOs) responsible for property and procurement.”

    QUESTION: Does Auckland Council have a ‘publicly-available ‘Register of Interests’ for NZ Local Government staff, and Directors and staff employed by ‘Council-Controlled Organisations (CCOs) responsible for property and procurement.’?

    “9. Make it a lawful requirement for details of ‘contracts issued’ – including the name of the contractor; scope, term and value of the contract to be published in NZ Central Government Public Sector, and Local Government (Council), and ‘Council-Controlled Organisation (CCO) Annual Reports so that they are available for public scrutiny.”

    QUESTION: Does Auckland Council provide ‘details of ‘contracts issued’ – including the name of the contractor; scope, term and value of the contract to be published in NZ Central Government Public Sector, and Local Government (Council), and ‘Council-Controlled Organisation (CCO) Annual Reports so that they are available for public scrutiny’?

    “10. Make it a lawful requirement that a ‘cost-benefit analysis’ of NZ Central Government, and Local Government public finances be undertaken to prove that private procurement of public services previously provided ‘in-house’ is cost-effective for the public majority. If not – then return public service provision to staff directly employed ‘in-house’ and cut out these private contractors who are effectively dependent on ‘corporate welfare’.”

    QUESTION: Has Auckland Council carried out ‘cost-benefit analysis’ to prove that private procurement of public services previously provided by ‘in-house’ Council employees is cost-effective for the public majority?

    If not – why not?

    “19. Legislate to help stop ‘State Capture’, a form of ‘grand corruption’ arguably endemic in NZ – where vested interests get their way at the ‘policy level’ before legislation is passed which serves their interests.”

    QUESTION: Has Auckland Council investigated the role played by private sector lobby groups, such as the unelected ‘Committee for Auckland’ and their connections and influence in helping to make ‘policy’ for Auckland Council and Auckland Council CCOs?

    Yours sincerely,
    Penny Bright ”
    _______________________________________________________________________

    “2 March 2012

    Hi Penny – thank you for your e mail I will respond more fully to your request in due course.

    Kind regards

    Dick Quax”
    ____________________________________________________________________

    Penny Bright

  13. tc 13

    I spy with my little eye a deal to save Otago union that will look so off the cuff and ‘gosh it’s the best we could given the circumstances’ costing the ratepayers and probably nz taxpayers.

    All in the interests of that recession busting godsend Rubgy, gosh what we do without them, aww bless em.

    • Rusty Shackleford 13.1

      Gosh the Dunedin ratepayers who protested funding the stadium must be shouting “I told you so” right about now.

  14. Te Reo Putake 14

    Latest Roy Morgan out; the slide continues for National and the Government vs Opposition is looking bleak at 48% v.52%. Confidence is down, too. What’s gone wrong, John?
     
    Gary Morgan says:

    “Today’s New Zealand Roy Morgan Poll shows Prime Minister John Key’s National Party (45.5%, unchanged) retaining a large lead over the main Opposition Labour Party (31.5%, up 0.5%).

    “Despite support for National remaining strong, Opposition Leader David Shearer has managed to increase Labour’s share of the vote at each New Zealand Roy Morgan Poll conducted in 2012 — an increase of 4% over Labour’s support at the 2011 New Zealand election and its highest since July 2011.

    “Support for the Opposition Parties (52%, up 0.5%) has also continued to increase and is now clearly ahead of the overall support for the National-led Government (48%, down 0.5%).”

    Ps. the folks at RM got the headline half right this time. It’s an improvement, I suppose.

  15. Morrissey 15

    LIAR WATCH No. 3
    Eyes Wide Open
    The Standard, March 1, 2012

    1.) “I know people on both sides and am very well informed.”

    2.) “ I have voted for Labour all my life,…”

    3.) “you have switched my entire family off ever voting for Labour again!”

    – – – – – – – – – ——- – – – – – – – ——– – – – – – –
    If you enjoyed this, you might like to see….

    LIARWATCH No. 1 (Populuxe1):
    http://thestandard.org.nz/open-mike-27022012/#comment-441643

    LIARWATCH No. 2 (grumpy):
    http://thestandard.org.nz/open-mike-01032012/#comment-442389

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    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
    5 days 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
    5 days 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
    5 days 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
    5 days ago
  • Car rego victims must get a refund
    Motorists who have been overcharged for their car registration should get a refund, says Labour’s Transport spokesperson Sue Moroney.  “Minister Nikki Kaye’s ‘faulty risk’ rating scheme has blown up in her face with over 170 different models of car having… ...
    5 days ago
  • Council statement shows they just don’t get it
    The Auckland Council’s statement today shows they don’t understand the problems created by the urban growth boundary, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford.  “I have been the first to defend the Auckland City Council when Bill English has been blaming… ...
    5 days ago
  • Inspecting electronic devices a potential privacy threat
    Labour is expressing concern for New Zealanders’ privacy rights as the Government signals Customs will have the power to inspect electronic devices coming across the border, says Labour’s Customs Spokesperson Rino Tirikatene. “We agree that customs officers should have the… ...
    5 days ago
  • The Price of Water
    This week I hosted a public meeting at EIT in Hawkes Bay to discuss how we might put a price on the commercial use of water, so that water may be valued and treated more sustainably. I invited a… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    5 days ago
  • Caption It NZ!
    Today I received a petition from the NZ Captioning Working Group urging the government to legislate for accessibility via closed captioning for deaf and hard of hearing New Zealanders. It was timely because today is the fifth Global Accessibility Awareness… ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers
    6 days ago
  • Older Kiwis to miss out on electives
    The Government is not doing enough elective surgery to keep up with New Zealand’s ageing population, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King.  “It’s damning that the targeted national intervention rate for cataract and knee and hip surgery is the same… ...
    6 days ago
  • Most principals say their college is underfunded
    The Government must substantially increase funding for secondary schools in next week’s Budget after a new survey found 86 per cent of principals consider their college under-resourced, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Just 14 per cent of secondary principals… ...
    6 days ago
  • Bill English and Nick Smith on different pages
    The Government’s support for Labour’s policy to remove the Auckland urban growth boundary is good news, but National needs to clarify its position, Labour’s Housing and Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Acting Prime Minister has acknowledged our position… ...
    6 days ago
  • Bill English and Nick Smith on different pages
    The Government’s support for Labour’s policy to remove the Auckland urban growth boundary is good news, but National needs to clarify its position, Labour’s Housing and Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Acting Prime Minister has acknowledged our position… ...
    6 days ago
  • Labour calls for independent inquiry into illegal fish dumping
    The Labour Party is reiterating its call for an independent inquiry into New Zealand’s fishing industry after two reports revealed the Ministry for Primary Industries turned a blind eye to widespread fish dumping in New Zealand waters, says Labour’s Fisheries… ...
    6 days ago
  • Mt Karangahake and Newcrest Mining
    On Wednesday and Sunday of last week the local residents of the Karangahake mountain in the Karangahake gorge of Hauraki/Coromandel peacefully protested against a gold mining drill rig on private land adjacent to the DOC land. The drilling rig was… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    1 week ago
  • Robbing Aucklanders to pay Rio Tinto
    New Zealand’s national electricity grid stretches the length of the country and contains some 11,803 kilometres of high-voltage lines and 178 substations. It wouldn’t make sense for competing power companies to duplicate and build their own expensive electricity transmission system… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    1 week ago
  • Government should abolish Auckland urban growth boundary
    The Government should rule out any possibility of an urban growth boundary in Auckland Council’s Unitary Plan if it is serious about fixing the housing crisis, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Over 25 years the urban growth boundary hasn’t… ...
    1 week ago
  • Kiwis don’t want iPads for Land deals
     It is outrageous that schools are relying on money and iPads from foreign land investors to meet the learning needs of their students, says Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins.  “Several OIO land applications by offshore investors have claimed that without… ...
    1 week ago
  • Homelessness – National has failed all of us
    A young South Auckland Māori woman recently tried to get hold of me around midnight. I missed her call. The woman wanted me to know the sharp reality facing too many families looking for a stable place to live. Things… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    1 week ago
  • Moko case should never have been manslaughter deal
    Confirmation again yesterday that the manslaughter charge in the Moko Rangitoheriri case was a deal done by the Crown Prosecution Service is justifiably the cause of outrage, says Labour’s Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Ardern.“This should never have been a case where… ...
    1 week ago
  • Overseas investor funds school’s digital devices
    The Government must address the inequality laptops and tablets in classrooms are causing after a Queenstown school was forced to use a donation from an overseas investor to get their students digital devices, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins. “Documents obtained… ...
    1 week ago
  • Child Youth and Family Review and Domestic Violence
    This Government has consistently failed to recognise the links between Child Youth and Family Services (CYFS) and intimate partner violence. For me, the recent review of CYFS has highlighted this misunderstanding of the dynamics of domestic violence and its impacts… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    1 week ago
  • Child Youth and Family Review and Domestic Violence
    This Government has consistently failed to recognise the links between Child Youth and Family Services (CYFS) and intimate partner violence. For me, the recent review of CYFS has highlighted this misunderstanding of the dynamics of domestic violence and its impacts… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    1 week ago
  • Canterbury rebuild: How wood is a better choice for the new city
    It was interesting to attend the ForestWood Conference in Auckland recently and learn about the extent of innovation in the wood processing and manufacturing sector. The forestry sector may be New Zealand’s third largest export earner, but raw logs make… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    1 week ago
  • Canterbury rebuild: How wood is a better choice for the new city
    It was interesting to attend the ForestWood Conference in Auckland recently and learn about the extent of innovation in the wood processing and manufacturing sector. The forestry sector may be New Zealand’s third largest export earner, but raw logs make… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    1 week ago
  • Key plucks $3b out of thin air – reckless and irresponsible
    John Key refuses to give up on his dream of tax cuts to the wealthy, despite being shot down by Bill English, and is resorting to plucking numbers out of thin air, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “On radio… ...
    1 week ago
  • John Key woefully out of touch on homelessness
    John Key is completely out of touch if he thinks desperate South Auckland families forced to live in cars can simply go to Work and Income for help, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “Many of these families are working and… ...
    1 week ago

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