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Open mike 06/10/2012

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, October 6th, 2012 - 64 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…

64 comments on “Open mike 06/10/2012”

  1. BLiP 2

    .

    Picked up a copy of the Wilkinson/Pickett updated “The Spirit Level” which has additional data and counter-arguments to the idiocy which masqueraded as criticism of the original issue. If you are unable to trust the conclusions, at least gather the courage to examine the data: its irrefutable. Interesting also in just how prescient the 1980 Brandt Report was in its conclusion that fixing what ails society is intricately bound up with the environment. Alas, it seems only a catastrophe will be sufficient to spur anything other than lip service – if we’re still around and functioning as a society.

    • karol 2.1

      Thanks for the recommendation.  The wiki page on the Brandt Report, doesn’t mention the environment – its more about the north (developed, manufacturing based countries)- south (providing raw materials) divide.

      • BLiP 2.1.1

        .

        I took a liberty – the environment issue was less of an overt official conclusion and more of a basis for discussion which has stemmed from the report’s data. The prescience is my interpretation rather than a statement of fact, although I am not alone in this regard. Still, thanks for checking and pulling me up on it. Here’s something which might elucidate:

        . . . Two decades ago, the Brandt Commission reports, North-South and Common Crisis offered the international community a forward-looking plan for balancing the creation of wealth with the provision of public goods and the preservation of the environment . . .

        From here: http://www.brandt21forum.info/

  2. Logie97 3

    According to the Herald, this guy made a comment about Dotcom in passing to Key.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10838732
    Quote…
    “The PM confirmed that the chief executive of the Motion Picture Association of America, Chris Dodd, had raised the Dotcom Megaupload issue “in passing” during the dinner.

    “He just essentially noted that the case was ongoing in New Zealand, and I just confirmed that and said yes. He didn’t dwell on that.”
    … unquote

    They didn’t dwell on it ???

    Quote …
    Mr Key said the studio heads at the dinner “talked a bit about intellectual property, but really more in the context of TPP and those negotiations”.

    “Obviously they’re making the case that they invest hugely in the creation of intellectual property and it’s critically important for their capacity to continue to be able to invest for that intellectual property to be protected.”… unquote

    Would seem to be a bit more than just a passing comment, Mr Key.

    • karol 3.1

      Ah, now we are getting down to the nitty-gritty – the TPPA and intellectual copyright – and Aussie, Canada, NZ and the UK falling over each other to host the filming of Hollywood movies.
       
      The journalist is not presenting a balanced view of these issues, but it’s all the government’s view on these.  Why do MSM journos fall over themselves to “balance views” on, say, climate change, but not issues like the above?
       
      Meanwhile last night’s TV news was all focused on Key’s expensive dinners and celebrity photo ops (while many Kiwis on low income struggle just to put food on the table), and a once-over-lightly of the government-Dotcom tussle.

      • BLiP 3.1.1

        .

        . . . Why do MSM journos fall over themselves to “balance views” on, say, climate change, but not issues like the above? . . .

        Deliberate under resourcing on the part of the owners. The last thing they want is an informed readership. Far better to keep the punters placated with notions of “everything is okay, good people are onto it and taking care of your concerns, no need to worry your prettly little heads, oh look – celebrity”. Among the reasons for this approach is that readers are more likely to respond positively to advertising if they are not angered or thoughtful about something they might have read.

        I have to confess to being less than supportive of the MSM grunts but I do believe the majority are good people who want to present the full picture but lack the resources to provide it. And then there’s the whole “deep capture” thing as well. Long live the Fifth Estate – but perhaps we citizen journalists should help out the MSM wage slaves? Just wondering.

      • Draco T Bastard 3.1.2

        Ah, now we are getting down to the nitty-gritty – the TPPA and intellectual copyright – and Aussie, Canada, NZ and the UK falling over each other to host the filming of Hollywood movies.

        Yep – the actual reason for Key to be in Hollywood.

        Why do MSM journos fall over themselves to “balance views” on, say, climate change, but not issues like the above?

        But they don’t. If they did then out of 1000 articles we’d get 999 telling us how bad it is and one which was an obvious load of bollocks from the Climate Science Coalition.

    • Logie97 3.2

      If he is visiting Hollywood in an official capacity, then perhaps every conversation is minuted and therefore we should, in the fullness of time, get a transcript…

      • freedom 3.2.1

        The PM made an obvious point on departure for LA LA Land that the dinner was a “purely social affair”. Yet it certainly sounds like Government business was openly discussed so roll out the minutes. Or is this just one more slip by the hamfistd haggard of Helensville and the MSM will let it slide.

        Oh and spreaking of hamfisted haggards, what the hell is with Armstrong’s declaration that the DotCom affair is all over and let’s just move on shall we as there is really nothing worth looking into and besides there are more inportant things to discuss like . . .

    • marsman 3.3

      The bit I liked about the John Key in Hollywood news coverage was the showing of tweets by Kim Dotcom e.g. ‘Keynochio reporting to his puppeteer Dodd’, that was the Patrick Gower report I think.

  3. And now there is a problem with Key’s comments about legal changes to the Immigration Act and the effect on Dotcom’s case.  It appears that the change in the law did not have the effect he said it did.

    The story is at  http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10838744

    How Key must hate the Dotcom case. Every day there is a new disaster for him …

    • Jim Nald 4.1

      Although it is only just approaching the first anniversary of the second term, why has this John Tui Government got quite a distinct feel like it is the penultimate year of the third term??!

      No doubt the bankster in the seat of power has a few secret agenda but, being mired in one scandal and lie after another scandal and lie, this Tui government seems to have lost control of the legislative and policy agenda for the public record.

      • muzza 4.1.1

        this Tui government seems to have lost control of the legislative and policy agenda for the public record.

        Jim, that’s what happens when you are taking instructions from abroad, and the script loses a few pages.

        Our legislature and policy would almost exclusively be directed by offshore interests now!

        • Draco T Bastard 4.1.1.1

          Our legislature and policy would almost exclusively be directed by offshore interests now!

          That’s what happens when we get empiricists (NACT) in power.

        • Jackal 4.1.1.2

          You’ve got to wonder about exactly how much “governance” National is doing while they’re spending most if not all of their time trying to cover their own asses?

          • Draco T Bastard 4.1.1.2.1

            I think you’ll find that National think that covering their own asses is governance.

    • freedom 4.2

      I think Haier Appliances will be changing their tack and putting a bid in for the PM’s media team instead of F&P, as the PM seems to have a more powerful spin cycle

    • ianmac 4.3

      John Key mutters and swears under his breath. “Now what!”
      “Sorry Prime Minister. We did warn you that what you were going to say about Citizenship was totally wrong.”
      “Yeah but Johnny Public trusts me. I reckon I can say anything and the suckers will believe me. A boyish grin a quick quip and they worship me. Hang on my every word. I am God to them all.”
      “Er Prime Minister. There are quite a few who are baying….”
      “Get out scum! How dare you criticise me! I am The Leader. Send that idiot to Afghanistan. Put him on mine disposal detail…”

    • deuto 4.4

      Graeme Edgeler now has an interesting post up at Public Address which provides more detail of the differences etc between the previous immigration legislation on residency visas and permits, and the changes that came into effect just before KDC moved to NZ in Dec 2010.

      http://publicaddress.net/legalbeagle/kim-dotcom-all-the-fault-of-the-immigration/

      Edgeler’s analysis explains why a cursory examination only of the before and after legislation could lead one to conclude that KDC would not have had protection from GCSB surveillance; but concludes that this is incorrect if the legislation is examined more fully. [haven’t put that well; see his actual post]. But what he also explains is why Key’s statements were incorrect.

      Another attempt at whitewash on Key’s part?

      Just read that Key is back in NZ in the next day or so as he is meeting the Singapore PM in Wellington on Monday. No Hawaii holiday this recess, it would seem. Could be another interesting week.

  4. Sanctuary 5

    John Roughan. All I can say after today’s howler column in the Herald is dear oh dear oh dear….

    The guy basically stakes out a position that would be comfortable to the right-of-ACT Libertarianz (guess he’ll be sure the Herald writes lots of glowing columns and editorials endorsing them in the lead up to the next election then).

    Auseful column, if only to show exactly how extreme right Roughan is. So much of the nonsense he writes suddenly makes sense.

    No point linking to his ruubbish; You’d be better off spending your time watching cartoons.

    A quick edit: I just see that economic dinosaur Fran O’Sullivan is having a tanty at quantative easing. Two of the neo-liberal yesterday having a rant in the paper as the world in 2012 leaves them behind stuck in the 1980s. Sad, but quite invigorating all at once.

    Both being flushed out and forced into clearly staking out such radically right wing positions shows that their days are over; increasingly they are no longer players – now they sound more like cranky old people observing from beyond the border.

    • Colonial Viper 5.1

      The powers that be – i.e. those in the global billionaire banker/investor class – are quite willing to hang out to dry the idiot millionaires who, to date, have served as useful idiots facilitating the neolib programme.

      The top 0.01% are currently in the process of consuming the top 10%.

      O’Sullivan and Roughan have no clue.

  5. Dr Terry 6

    They might sound like “petulant young people” as well.

  6. Dv 7

    What happened to the big story of Tiwai point that was headlined yesterday in Stuff?
    It seems to have gone.

    • ianmac 7.1

      Was on the National Radio News this morning. David Cunliffe was given time to point out the connection between the walkout of up-for-sale Electricity and the disaster that the close down of Tiwai Point would be.

      • Dv 7.1.1

        Yes, but I thought such a big story would have some follow up in the print media , and there is/was NOTHING in the herald!

        • OneTrack 7.1.1.1

          The herald are too busy writing about dotCom. There isn’t any other news – is there?

    • tc 7.2

      Tiwai and Norse skoggs Kawerau reduction on demand ARE the real reasons MRP was parked, bashing those pesky maaris about dem water rights and getting Bill ‘ you’ve been a bad boy’ Blinglish to front the sham ‘consultations’ was pure diversions.

      The water rights is still an issue but it’s not the one that’s going to floor the price of wholesale electricity like these 2 power sucks will, and the Nats know that.

      Where’s some serious pieces on that in the MSM !

  7. RedBaron 8

    Reading Brian Gaynor in the Herald on Haier’s bid for F & P.

    Now here’s an idea for all those “Mum & Dad investors that are waiting on Power Company shares..” Any chance of some of our major kiwisaver and investment funds getting together burying out Haier (keeping a marketing relationship) and returning the company to largely NZ onwership. I believe that it has some solid intellectual property of the type that the government says it wants to encourage for the countrie’s benefit. Deal anyone?

    • millsy 8.1

      4 words: New Zealand Superannuation Fund.

      I am fully aware that the government is not supposed to direct the NZSF to by F and P, but this can be circumvented by pulling aside the chairman of its board and having a quiet whisper about how it would be a ‘win-win’ for all concerned if a large shareholding is purchased in our premier whiteware company to keep it in Kiwi ownership..

      Same thing could have been done with the Crafar farms.

      • BloodyOrphan 8.1.1

        Old Johny Sparkles should have thought about that 4 years ago.

        • tc 8.1.1.1

          Johnny sparkles probably did but why would he want to retain local ownership, he’s all about lining his foreign masters pockets, US, china whoever as long as its hollow.

          IMO the game was up for F&P once Haier were allowed in as that allowed them access to whatever R&D was going down, easy to replicate and mass produce a lot cheaper.

          Commodity industries are getting slaughtered by china and F&P isn’t a high margin, high quality brand like Miele, Bosch, Asko etc. I’ve heard they owe a lot to a large euro brand they’ve borrowed some ideas from over the years.

          All in all can’t say it’d be something I’d put the farm on being consumer demand driven also.

  8. Georgecom 9

    A team of 4 people collected over 200 signatures on the asset sale petition at an event this morning. Another 200 signatures toward the 300,000 needed.

    If there was another 4 such events around the country today thats an extra 1000 signatures. Week by week we get closer to John Key having to face a vote on the issue.

  9. A direct approach to John Ansell on Kiwiblog today :)

    http://www.kiwiblog.co.nz/2012/10/rotary_cancels_on_ansell.html#comment-1030809

    FYI

    _____________________________________________________________________________

    Here you go John Ansell – perhaps you would like to respond directly on Kiwiblog?

    I’m sure that there will be a lot of interest in your reply?

    Kind regards,

    Penny Bright.

    ________________________________________________________________________________

    YET TO BE PUBLISHED COMMENT ON NBR REGARDING JOHN ANSELL’S PURPORTED SUPPORT FOR ‘ONE LAW FOR ALL':

    http://www.nbr.co.nz/article/ansell-details-colourblind-state-launch-ck-130190#comment-587615

    If John Ansell so believes in ONE LAW FOR ALL – does he believe that John Banks and Don Brash should have equally been prosecuted for the strict liability offence (Securities Act s58 (3) ) of signing Huljich Kiwisaver Scheme registered prospectuses dated 22 August 2008 and 18 September 2009 which contained untrue statements?

    (To see copies of the above-mentioned Huljich Kiwisaver Scheme registered prospectuses dated 22 August 2008 and 18 September 2009 – check out http://www.pennybright4epsom.org.nz )

    Does John Ansell believe that ‘3 strikes and out’ should equally apply to ‘white collar’ criminals?

    If not – why not?

    On 24 September 2012 – the Commerce Select Committee of the ‘Highest Court in the Land’ – effectively decided that ‘one law for all’ does not apply to former and current ACT Party Leaders – Don Brash and John Banks.

    “The Commerce Committee has considered Petition 2011/5 of Penelope Mary Bright and 307 others, which requests “that the House conduct an urgent inquiry into the decisions regarding prosecutions relating to the Huljich Kiwisaver Scheme registered prospectuses dated 22 August 2008 and 18 September 2009”, and has no matters to bring to the attention of the House.”

    http://www.parliament.nz/NR/rdonlyres/E9BE559F-179A-4AB6-878379ECF71C2387/241261/DBSCH_SCR_5602_Petition20115ofPenelopeMaryBrightan.pdf

    Does John Ansell support John Banks effectively being politically protected – given that 5 out of 9 Commerce Select Committee members are National MPs?

    http://www.parliament.nz/en-NZ/MPP/MPs/MPs/Default.htm?pf=CommitteeShortName&sf=Commerce&lgc=0

    Commerce Member Bakshi, Kanwaljit Singh National Party, List
    Commerce Member Borrows, Chester National Party, Whanganui
    Commerce Deputy-Chairperson Cosgrove, Clayton Labour Party, List
    Commerce Member Cunliffe, David Labour Party, New Lynn
    Commerce Member Curran, Clare Labour Party, Dunedin South
    Commerce Member Lotu-Iiga, Peseta Sam National Party, Maungakiekie
    Commerce Member Mathers, Mojo Green Party, List
    Commerce Member Mitchell, Mark National Party, Rodney
    Commerce Chairperson Young, Jonathan National Party, New Plymouth

    Does John Ansell support the House conducting an urgent inquiry into the decisions regarding prosecutions relating to the Huljich Kiwisaver Scheme registered prospectuses dated 22 August 2008 and 18 September 2009”?

    If not – why not?

    Penny Bright
    ‘Anti-corruption campaigner’

    http://www.dodgyjohnhasgone.com

  10. dancerwaitakere 11

    I seem to be having some problem access the standard on my Chrome browser.

    It says that there are too many redirect loops, I have cleared the cookies, I have also made sure that third party (whatever they are) things are allowed.

    Anyone able to help a brother out?

  11. ianmac 12

    I thought that this was well worth the listening time given the direction that our Government is taking us. Puts perspective on National Standards, League Tables, Child Poverty:
    Pasi Sahlberg – improving education
    Director General of CIMO (Centre for International Mobility and Cooperation) in Helsinki, Finland, and expert in educational reforms, training teachers, coaching schools and advising policy-makers, who is visiting New Zealand to speak at the annual meetings of the NZEI and PPTA. ”

    Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

  12. Georgecom 13

    Quiz – Can you be the NZ Prime Minister?

    Answers at the bottom of the post.

    Q1. A Minister in your government is shown to have tried to hide election donations. The Minister denies all knowledge of receiving the money or the donor and ‘can’t remember, can’t recall’ the events. He is proven as lying on the matter. As Prime Minister do you:

    a. Investigate thoroughly and if the charge is substantiated, sack the Minister.
    b. Investigate and if the charge is substantiated, demote the Minister and warn him of the need for honesty.
    c. Do nothing, read nothing and try to avoid the issue.

    Q2. A Government spy agency is shown to have illegally eaves-dropped on a NZ citizen or resident. You were informed of the illegal eaves-dropping. As the Minister in charge of the agency do you:

    a. Make a full public disclosure and apology of the eaves-dropping and your lack of oversight. Get it fully investigated and offer your resignation if it shows you are at fault.
    b. Make a full public disclosure, get the matter investigated, explain your part in the event and how it will not happen again.
    c. Release as little detail as possible, blame other people and deny any involvement whatsoever.

    Answers
    a. If you answered “a”, congratulations, your leadership is what NZ needs. You should consider standing for Prime Minister
    b. If you answered “b”, you should consider standing for Prime Minister as you can bring a ‘higher standard’ to Government.
    c. If you answered “c”, then you ARE the prime minister.

  13. FYI folks!

    ANOTHER ‘YET TO BE PUBLISHED’ COMMENT ON NBR:

    http://www.nbr.co.nz/article/scorecard-media-hungry-sfo-boss-feeley-checked-andready-weekend-review-gb-130168

    So – why didn’t Adam Feeley ensure that the SFO prosecute John Banks and Don Brash for signing Huljich Kiwisaver Registered Prospectuses date 22 August 2008 and 18 September 2009, which contained untrue statements?

    A strict liability offence under s.58 (3) of the Securities Act?

    Oh – of course – silly me.

    ‘ONE LAW FOR ALL’ doesn’t apply to those politicians who may be pivotal in holding the balance of power in this country ‘perceived’ to be ‘the least corrupt in the world’?

    Penny Bright
    ‘Anti-corruption campaigner’.

    http://www.dodgyjohnhasgone.com

    http://www.pennybright4epsom.org.nz

  14. NickS 15

    Ug.

    While I’m awake enough:

    Some of you probably think I’m pro-GE and to a certain extent I am, as 3 years of undergrad uni education + bits of pieces of readings in my own time have made clear the opportunities that genetic modification tools provide, along with the issues. So when confronted with downright stupidity over GMO’s that inflates risks beyond teh evidence, my reaction (influenced partly by my depression) is usually to whip out the clue-by-4 and have fun. And since the usual reaction to that from the anti-GMO crowd is usually to pull out more crap there’s usually not an opportunity to treat the subject matter fully, plus my depression causes me to loose interest a bit to often. Which leads unto no chances to actually discuss the damn work and implications.

    Especially when certain people go off on tangents about stuff, like how change in science is totes bad, which frankly is the same approach creationists and climate change denialists use to poo science.

    Anyhow, the work AgriReseach has done is actually pretty interesting in it’s own right as it makes use of microRNA’s to alter the expression of the target gene. How exactly? The technique makes use of part of our innate gene regulation and innate immune systems, by the name of RNAi, which was discovered in 1998. Depending on what sort of miRNA or a siRNA you use (dsRNA, anti-sense RNA) and the sequence of the RNA, you can get very fine control over gene expression. Usually though in biotech, this is used to greatly lower the expression of a targeted gene via methylation of the targeted gene, and with the right technique can cause inheritable epigenetic gene silencing. A hell of lot more reliably than the usual technique for knockout mutations, although RNAi still results in a very low basal level of expression. And while RNAi is promising as a medical tool for treatment of many cancer types, as well as viruses, unless you package it (say, in a virus, tailored to target a particular tissue type*… Or a bog standard cell membrane vesicle), the immune system will recognise and degrade it. Which means at present RNAi is limited to use on epithelial tissues, and anything close to the surface, or single cells (such as fungi, animal or plant cell cultures or gametes) so thus it probably wont be seeing any mainstream usage for a while.

    As for whether or not AgriResearch’s recent work has any utility, from a purely economic perspective, it’s ROI is pretty crap. As there’s already plenty of alternatives for those who suffer milk allergies already avaliable. In fact the market is probably not worth even trying for given the anti-GE phobia in our EU export markets, and indeed it will take decades to produce a sufficiently large enough herd via conventional breeding, plus there are uncertainties on how many generations the change in gene modification will last for. Although if we look at natural, stable hybrids and compare gene expression profiles vs human made ones, typically there’s very close patterns of gene expression, even when the natural and lab hybrids are breed over multiple generations. However, in terms of teh science, it’s a very useful test of RNAi techniques in a large mammal, which provides data on how well it works and potential issues, Like the calf’s missing tail.

    So yeah, frankly not the best idea to try and spin it as having dairy industry applications, but given the “your idea must make money” meme that’s infiltrated western universities and government research bodies since the 1980’s, it’s a trade off. One I’d rather do without actually, due to the costs involved to research, in which certain areas are potentially neglected and the pressure to spin research proposals and results towards profit making.

    And concerning risks, our environment is full of miRNA and siRNA’s from the food we eat and the bacteria and such we share our bodies with, but that’s what we have an innate immune system response for :P Plus rather awesome gene expression networks and cell suicide triggers. Anyhow though, chemically lab made RNAi sequences are no different from natural ones, so any risk claims centred on that alone should be ignored and the originator nommed on for essentialist stupidity.

    What matters is which gene is being targeted, what is it’s place in the gene expression network(s) it’s involved in and does the RNA being used have high specificity to the target gene or will it affect other genes?

    With other GMO’s, particularly plants, we need to also take into account escape risks, gene transfer into non-target populations, changes in post-translational protein modification, gene expression patterns, toxicity issues and organism health. Plus ye olde “who owns the fucking patent rights” and the environmental/economic impact of the GMO And no, I do not give a flaming goat to religious/cultural sensibilities vis anything with the phrase “unnatural”** and all synonymies. Because frankly they are useless for risk assessment.

    And of course, I hold to the precautionary principle, but with a modifier that asking for absolute safety is batshit insane vis epistemological uncertainty*** and a dislike for anything not backed by strong statistical analysis, preferably done via an independent team.

    Me go blob now /meeeeeeeh
    _______________________________________
    * In theory, pretty easy to do, as it’s merely a modification of present virus based GE techniques: take an immortalised animal cell, transform with viral genes, bar ones for packaging the viral genes, and instead get it to package up your RNA of choice and let stew until you have enough modified viral particles with your chosen payload.

    **Which carries with it all sorts of stupidity vis defining “natural”, vis philosophy of science and epistemology issues, which I boil down to “artificial is a subset of natural, and human culture/tech is just an extended phenotype”. i.e. death unto the whole “natural = good” meme…

    ***aka “philosophy is fun and melts your brain”

  15. joe90 16

    Paul Broun, a member of the US House Committee on Science, Space and Technology: Evolution, Embryology, Big Bang Theory Are “Lies Straight From The Pit Of Hell”.

    Broun and Todd “legitimate rape” Akin, RWNJ fundamentalist young earth creationists with a belief that science is a tool of Satan, are tasked with overseeing science at the highest level of the US government.

  16. ianmac 17

    Paul Broun at highest level? Unbelievable. But wait. John Banks believes as Broun believes and is at the highest level as buddy to the high flying John Key. Amen.

    • NickS 17.1

      Not really surprising given the strong fundamentalist christian factions and fractions in the US :(

      • ianmac 17.1.1

        Just politely turned a Jehova Witness away at my door. Lovely smile from a nice appearing lady but potty in my book. She is welcome to her ideas but….
        Who was that Scottish madman who shouted through his front door to the pair of female evangelists waiting for him to answer his door.
        “I am naked! I have a huge erection and in 5 seconds I will open my door! 1, 2,3,……”

        • prism 17.1.1.1

          ianmac
          Was that a rhetorical question? Sounds like Billy Connolly. I could just imagine him putting that into his stand up routine.

  17. joe90 19

    Please let this be true.

    http://front.moveon.org/legal-analysis-outlines-potential-crime-in-mitt-romneys-financial-disclosures/

    http://www.scribd.com/doc/107160020/New-Legal-Analysis-Finds-Strong-Possibility-of-Romney-Criminal-Liability-for-Misrepresentation-He-Made-in-Federal-Financial-Disclosure-Filings-in-2011

    CONCLUSION

    The facts known about Gov. Romney’s role in Bain Capital entities after 1999 strongly suggest that Gov. Romney made a false statement in violation of the False Statements Act in categorically asserting, in 2011, on his Financial Disclosure Form, that since February 1999, he had not been involved in the operations of any Bain Capital entity in any way. At a minimum, the facts call out for a full investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice

    • OneTrack 19.1

      Are you worried Obama isn’t going to win except by default?

    • ianmac 19.2

      No doubt Mr Key will contact Mr Romney and explain the strategy of deniable ignorance and the usefulness of memory loss.

      On the other hand would Mr Obama already have known about the possible charges which may follow so he would be wise to lie low during the debate, and wait for a week or two.
      Aww fantasy!

  18. muzza 20

    Oh well, looks like NATO has successfully got a war “officially” started with Syria, using Turkey…

    Old news now I guess – Its all so staged, now its become like the staging is staged…

    • David H 20.1

      Yeah but if you go back and see how WW2 started then look at whats happening now then a WW3 ain’t far away.

      There was the global financial crises 1928- 1935 2007-20??
      lots of little wars
      over population
      bankers playing both ends against the middle
      big corporations selling to both sides
      arms dealers having a field day
      yep the hate mongers are having fun, and wars on the way.

      And when its all over the bankers and business men will congratulate each other and rape the losing sides land and resources.. The Military will be happy as they will have been able to play with all their toys and invent lots of new ones, due to the increase in budget.

    • Vicky32 20.2

      Oh well, looks like NATO has successfully got a war “officially” started with Syria, using Turkey

      So it would seem! My Turkish student came in late and terrified, I was told by his other teacher… he is less concerned about the rights and wrongs, and more worried about his girlfriend and family…
      Poor guy.
      The maddest story I’ve heard is that the Syrian regime was responsible for the shopping centre fire in Qatar. Do you know what became of that accusation, muzza?
       

  19. Draco T Bastard 21

    No, you’re not entitled to your opinion

    The problem with “I’m entitled to my opinion” is that, all too often, it’s used to shelter beliefs that should have been abandoned. It becomes shorthand for “I can say or think whatever I like” – and by extension, continuing to argue is somehow disrespectful. And this attitude feeds, I suggest, into the false equivalence between experts and non-experts that is an increasingly pernicious feature of our public discourse.

    Which is what I’ve been saying for awhile.

    • joe90 22.1

      League tables really are a wonderful idea…dontaren’t they?.

      can we have the edit function back ..please..

      • OneTrack 22.1.1

        Our teachers are only interested in the children so that sort of thing would never happen here.

        • Draco T Bastard 22.1.1.1

          Put in place what this government are as far as education goes and you put in place the incentives for corruption.

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  • Chinese rail workers must be paid minimum wage
    KiwiRail must immediately stop further Chinese engineers from working here until they can guarantee they are being paid the New Zealand minimum wage, Labour’s MP for Hutt South Trevor Mallard says. The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment today released… ...
    23 hours ago
  • Better consultation needed on Christchurch asset sales
    The Christchurch City Council (CCC) should be promoting wide and genuine public consultation on its draft ten year budget and plan given the serious implications for the city’s future of its proposed asset sales, outlined in the plan. Instead, it… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage MP
    23 hours ago
  • ‘Healthy Families’ a good start but not enough to tackle obesity relate...
    Today the Government is making a the meal out of the launch of its ‘Healthy Families’ package to promote ‘healthier decisions’ and ‘changing mindsets’ over nutrition, physical activity and obesity. Great! The programme is based on a successful model from… ...
    GreensBy Kevin Hague MP
    24 hours ago
  • ‘Healthy Families’ a good start but not enough to tackle obesity relate...
    Today the Government is making a the meal out of the launch of its ‘Healthy Families’ package to promote ‘healthier decisions’ and ‘changing mindsets’ over nutrition, physical activity and obesity. Great! The programme is based on a successful model from… ...
    GreensBy Kevin Hague MP
    24 hours ago
  • No more sweet talk on obesity
    The Government should be looking at broader measures to combat obesity rather than re-hashing pre-announced initiatives, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says.  “While it is encouraging to see the Government finally waking from its slumber and restoring a focus on… ...
    1 day ago
  • Government two-faced on zero-hour contracts
    The Government should look to ban zero-hour contracts in its own back yard before getting too high and mighty about other employers using them, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “Information collated by Labour shows at least three district health… ...
    1 day ago
  • Scrutiny of battlefield deaths should continue
    As New Zealand troops head to Iraq under a shroud of secrecy, the Government is pushing ahead with legislation to remove independent scrutiny of incidents where Kiwi soldiers are killed in hostile action overseas, Labour’s Defence spokesperson Phil Goff says.… ...
    1 day ago
  • Damp-free homes a right for tenants
    Labour is urging tenants to use a little known rule which gives them the right to live in damp-free rental homes. Otago University researchers have today highlighted the Housing Improvement Regulations 1947 as a way tenants can force landlords to… ...
    2 days ago
  • National must take action on speculators
    The Government must take action on property speculators who are damaging the housing market and shutting families and young people out of the home ownership dream, Labour Leader Andrew Little says.  “There are a number of options the Government could… ...
    2 days ago
  • Milk price halves: A $7b economic black hole
    Global milk prices have halved since the peak last year, creating an economic black hole of almost $7 billion that will suck in regions reliant on dairy, crucial industries and the Government’s books, says Labour’s Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson. “The… ...
    2 days ago
  • Kitchen plan set to swallow up health boards’ funds
    The financial impacts of implementing a proposal to outsource hospital food, forced on them by a crown-owned company which is now facing an auditor-general’s inquiry, are being felt by district health boards across the country, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King… ...
    3 days ago
  • Reserve Bank scathing of Government
    The Reserve Bank’s most scathing critique to date of National’s inability to handle the housing crisis shows the Bank is sick of having to pick up the pieces, Labour Leader Andrew Little says.  “John Key continues to deny there is… ...
    3 days ago
  • Time for McDonald’s to upsize work hours
    Labour is calling on McDonald’s to have more respect for their workers and offer them more guaranteed work hours. McDonald’s is proposing to guarantee its workers 80 per cent of their rostered hours, Labour’s spokesperson for Labour Issues Iain Lees-Galloway… ...
    3 days ago
  • Brownlee misses the boat on asbestos
    Gerry Brownlee has once again missed an opportunity to improve the lives of Cantabrians post-earthquakes, Labour’s Canterbury Earthquake Recovery spokesperson Ruth Dyson says. A new report from the Royal Society of New Zealand and the Prime Minister’s Chief Science Adviser,… ...
    3 days ago
  • Government must come clean on troop deployment and protections
    New Zealanders deserve more than to hear about their troops’ deployment overseas from Australian media, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “News from Australia that Kiwi troops are on their way to Iraq this week is another example of the culture… ...
    3 days ago
  • Cancer prevention calls gain momentum
    Research showing bowel cancer treatment sucks up more public health dollars than other cancers once again highlights the need for a national screening programme, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. A study by Otago University, which found colon cancer is… ...
    3 days ago
  • Burger King shows zero-hour contracts not needed
    The abandonment of zero-hour contracts by Burger King is further evidence good employers do not need to use them, Labour’s spokesperson on Labour Issues Iain Lees-Galloway says. "Congratulations to the Unite Union and Burger King for settling an employment agreement… ...
    4 days ago
  • Kiwis deserve more than reheats
    The Government looks set to rely on regurgitated announcements for this year’s Budget if today’s speech is anything to go by, Labour Leader Andrew Little says. “National has been building up to this Budget for seven long years, promising a… ...
    4 days ago
  • Landlords not cashing in on insulation schemes
    The fact so few landlords have taken up the generous taxpayer subsidy for retrofitting shows it is time to legislate minimum standards, says Labour’s Associate Housing spokesperson Poto Williams. “Many landlords aren’t using Government insulation schemes because they don’t want… ...
    4 days ago
  • Zero excuses, end zero hour contracts now
    It’s time Workplace Relations Minister Michael Woodhouse cut the weasel words and banned zero hour contracts, Labour Leader Andrew Little says. “Michael Woodhouse today acknowledged zero hour contracts are unfair. ...
    4 days ago
  • We’ve reached Peak Key with ‘artificial target’
    John Key’s attempt to redefine his cornerstone promise of two election campaigns as an artificial target suggests his other promises are works of fiction, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “For seven years and two election campaigns, John Key has… ...
    4 days ago
  • Top 10 need to know facts on climate change
    All the numbers and stats around climate change can be confusing, so we’ve put together a handy list of the top 10 numbers about climate change that we should all know- and then do something about. You can sign up here to… ...
    GreensBy Frog
    1 week ago
  • Campbell Live a bastion of investigative journalism
    The announcement that current affairs programme Campbell Live is under review and may be axed has sparked outrage from the New Zealand public, for good reason, says Labour’s Broadcasting Spokesperson Clare Curran. “Investigative journalism is a precious resource in today’s… ...
    1 week ago
  • Ground Zero for ‘disastrous’ contracts
    Yesterday the Green Party called on the Government to follow the leadership of Restaurant Brands and ditch zero-hour contracts. Currently it looks like the Government is a large part of the zero-hours problem. It allows these types of “non-jobs” to… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    1 week ago
  • Trust in National will disappear with deficit
    Bill English is set to break his promise to get the books back in the black this year and lose the trust of Kiwis who have had to do it too hard for too long, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant… ...
    1 week ago
  • Dorothy Jelicich passes away
    It is with sincere sadness that the Labour Party conveys its sympathies and condolences to the bereaved family of Dorothy Jelicich who passed away last night at the age of 87 years, says the MP for Mangere, Su’a William Sio.… ...
    1 week ago
  • Government leaves aquaculture industry at sea
    If the Government had acted in its first term, the Sanford mussel processing plant would not have to close, says Labour’s Fisheries spokesperson Rino Tirikatene. “Sanford is considering closure after a decline in the natural supply of spat. This is… ...
    1 week ago
  • Maggie –it’s time to roll your sleeves up
      It’s time for the Minister of Conservation Maggie Barry to listen to the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment  and start untangling the mess around  New Zealand’s stewardship land, says Labour’s Conservation spokesperson Ruth Dyson.  “The Commissioner has called for… ...
    1 week ago
  • Gutting of prison jobs a gift to private prison provider
    Today’s announcement that sections of three prisons are to be closed is the thin end of the wedge for the privatisation of the country’s prison service, says Labour’s  Corrections spokesperson Kelvin Davis.  It's estimated that 260 prison officers will lose… ...
    1 week ago
  • Joyce must rule out revising export target
    Steven Joyce must rule out a second revision of the Government’s export target in six months and stop trying to massage statistics when he fails to meet his goals, says Labour’s Economic Development spokesperson David Clark. “National set a target… ...
    1 week ago
  • Caregiver law passed in haste now a fail
    The Government’s response to supporting family caregivers is mean spirited and designed to fail, says Labour’s Disability Issues Spokesperson Ruth Dyson.  “Figures released by the Ministry of Health show that only a tiny percentage of the eligible families have applied… ...
    1 week ago
  • Clear message handed to nuclear states
    MPs Phil Goff, Shane Reti and Marama Fox are due to meet with diplomats from the United Kingdom, Russia, the United States, China and France tomorrow to hand deliver a letter calling for their countries to disarm their nuclear weapons.… ...
    1 week ago
  • Parity is no party for export businesses
    The extent of the damage done by the high dollar to New Zealand businesses is larger than many think as shown by a dramatic decrease in exports to Australia as our dollar rises, Labour Leader Andrew Little says. “When the… ...
    1 week ago
  • Nats’ limited thinking stifling innovation
    Businesses trying to innovate and create better products are being let down by this Government with an industry expert saying Steven Joyce’s mini-tax credits will have almost no impact, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Andrew Dickeson, director of taxation… ...
    1 week ago
  • Vanishing Nature: A must-read for all New Zealanders
    The Environmental Defence Society’s new book Vanishing Nature – facing New Zealand’s biodiversity crisis, should be read by every New Zealander concerned about our native plants and wildlife and striking natural landscapes; and particularly by Government Ministers before Budget Day… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage MP
    1 week ago
  • The CYF review – an exercise in predetermination?
    Child Youth and Family (CYF) has a troublesome history of underperformance and botched care and protection cases, the most recent being its abject failure, along with the Police, to address the Roastbusters sexual abuse allegations with any semblance of professionalism.… ...
    GreensBy Metiria Turei MP
    1 week ago
  • Time to act to protect Hector’s Dolphins
    The death of a Hector’s Dolphin in a set net must lead to action from the Minister of Conservation, Ruth Dyson, Labour’s Conservation Spokesperson said today. “Despite the fact that the Akaroa Harbour has been a Marine Mammal Sanctuary since… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Double-laning Darby and Joan disputed
    The Prime Minister’s by-election promise to double lane the road between Northland’s iconic Darby and Joan kauri trees has been contradicted by officials, Labour’s spokesperson Phil Twyford says. The NZ Transport Agency has told a media outlet that not all… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Parity: Cheaper trips but lower incomes
    The Kiwi dollar’s near-parity with the Australian means some tourists will have cheaper Gold Coast holidays but New Zealand incomes will stay lower for longer, making it harder for many to afford the trip, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson.… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • English’s state house flog off plans exposed
    Labour is calling on Bill English to confirm or deny a claim the Government is exploring a mass sell-off of state housing to tenants. Property magnate Bob Jones writes in a newspaper column published today that the Minister responsible for… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Extension of work scheme urged for disaster relief
    The Government is being urged to extend the Regional Seasonal Employment (RSE) scheme to help families in the most severely-damaged islands of Vanuatu, following Cyclone Pam. “Allowing a further 300 people to take up seasonal employment in New Zealand under… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Nuclear deal with Iran should be just the start
    A deal struck by Iran and major powers to ensure the Iranian facilities producing nuclear material are not used for the purpose of constructing nuclear weapons has been a long time coming, Labour’s Disarmament spokesperson Phil Goff says. “Undoubtedly Iran’s… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Green Aoraki Newsletter March 2015
    Attachmentsmarch2015_web.pdf - 1.4 MB ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Minister needs to do his homework
    Nathan Guy needs to do his homework, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “Answering questions in Parliament today on the dairy sector, the Primary Industries Minister denied John Key wants to float Fonterra. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Minister needs to put the kibosh on dirty diesel
    State-Owned Enterprises Minister Todd McClay has to get a grip on the KiwiRail board and put the kibosh on its crazy plan for dirty diesel on the main trunk line, Labour’s Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford says. It has been revealed… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Louise Nicholas Day: Work still to do
    This is a summary of a speech I gave in honour of Louise Nicholas Day on March 31 The IPCA report showed us basic mistakes are still able to be made within a specialist unit. The Police Commissioner said there… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    2 weeks ago
  • The meanness and pettiness of Nats in power
    Last night, Parliament debated NZ First MP Tracey Martin’s Bill to ensure children in the long term care of family members were able to access a clothing allowance currently only available to children in foster care. Many of these children… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Defence Force’s Hotshots given cold shoulder
    The latest victim of the Government’s cost-cutting drive looks set to be an organisation that has provided vital services and support to defence force staff and their families for 67 years, Labour’s Defence spokesperson Phil Goff says. “Labour understands Gerry… ...
    2 weeks ago

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