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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 😛 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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  • Government must do more to help global refugee crisis
    John Key must urgently increase our refugee quota and let New Zealand play its part in helping address the tragic humanitarian crisis unfolding around the world, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “The refugee crisis in countries like Lebanon and Austria… ...
    21 hours ago
  • The latest equal pay case – Go the Midwives
    ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    23 hours ago
  • Key’s threat to veto premature
    John Key’s threat that he might use a financial veto against the Bill that will introduce 26 weeks Paid Parental Leave is premature and based on inflated costings, says the bill’s sponsor, Labour ‘s Sue Moroney.  “The Government keeps saying… ...
    2 days ago
  • Reflections on the plastic bag tour
    After a marathon public tour around New Zealand that took me to 29 different places around New Zealand from the far north of Kaitaia to the deep south of Invercargill to talk about phasing out plastic bag use, I wanted… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    2 days ago
  • Labour celebrates Tongan language and diversity
    Tongan Language Week is a timely reminder of the importance and beauty of our Pacific culture, identity and language in New Zealand, says our first Tongan born, Tongan speaking MP Jenny Salesa.  The theme for Tongan Language Week in 2015… ...
    2 days ago
  • Privatising CYF about ideology not care
    John Key’s suggestions today that Child Youth and Family could be privatized will be a terrifying thought for New Zealanders already dealing with the mess created in private prisons and plans to sell our state houses to Australians, Opposition Leader… ...
    2 days ago
  • Govt must make most of Jetstar competition
    Government agencies should pledge to always buy “the best fare of the day” to maximise competition between Jetstar and Air New Zealand and ensure savings for taxpayers while boosting services to regional New Zealand, Labour’s Transport Spokesperson Phil Twyford says.… ...
    2 days ago
  • Time for inquiry into petrol margins
    It’s time for an inquiry into petrol companies as margins are once again at the high levels that prompted concerns late last year, says Labour's Energy Spokesperson Stuart Nash. "Over the December January holiday period, petrol importer margins jumped to… ...
    5 days ago
  • More talk as Auckland congestion worsens
    The main impact of the Government’s agreement with Auckland Council today will be simply to delay still further decisions needed to relieve the city’s traffic congestion, says Labour’s Auckland Issues Spokesperson, Phil Goff. “Government has been aware for more than… ...
    6 days ago
  • Serco inquiry extended
    A two month delay to the Government investigation into prison fight clubs shows the extent of problems within the Serco circus, says Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Kelvin Davis. “My office received a tsunami of complaints so I’m not surprised the terms… ...
    6 days ago
  • Truck Shops ignore consumer laws
    A damning Commerce Commission report out today highlights the failure of the Government to protect poor and vulnerable families from unscrupulous truck shops, says Labour’s Consumer Affairs Spokesperson David Shearer. “The report found that 31 out of 32 firms it… ...
    6 days ago
  • Taihoa at Ihumatao says Labour
    Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford has called on the Government to rethink its controversial Special Housing Area in Māngere. Auckland Council is today meeting to discuss the development which borders the Otuataua Stonefield Historic Reserve. This project is to get… ...
    6 days ago
  • Figures suggest National deliberately excluded farming
    Figures showing the dairy industry would be categorised as high risk if there were a further five severe injuries within a year, strongly suggests National designed its flawed system to deliberately exclude farming, Labour’s spokesperson for Labour Issues Iain Lees-Galloway… ...
    6 days ago
  • Bleak report on the state of our children
    A damning conclusion by the Children’s Commissioner today that ‘we don’t know if children are better off as a result of state intervention, but the indications are not good’ should make fixing CYFs a top priority for this Government, says… ...
    6 days ago
  • Dodgy data used to justify axing KiwiSaver kickstart
    National’s agenda to run down KiwiSaver has become even clearer from a scathing critique of the Government’s justification for axing the $1000 kickstart, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Since National came to power they have not only continually undermined… ...
    6 days ago
  • Unsecure website risks Ashley MoBIEson hack
    Experts have raised security concerns that vulnerabilities in MoBIE’s half million-dollar website could lead to a possible Ashley Maddison-style hack, says Labour’s Economic Development spokesperson David Clark. “The real issue here is not what data is immediately available, but what… ...
    7 days ago
  • Democracy still the loser in Canterbury
    The Government has demonstrated once again how arrogant and out of touch it is in denying Cantabrians the same democratic rights as the rest of the country, says Labour’s Environment spokesperson Megan Woods.  “The Environment Canterbury Bill which has been… ...
    7 days ago
  • Waiver cost still a mystery
    The Government still has no idea what it’s going to cost community and voluntary groups to get a waiver from the fees police will charge to carry out checks on their staff and volunteers, says Labour’s Community and Voluntary spokesperson… ...
    7 days ago
  • China exports fall 27 per cent in a year
    Exports to China have fallen by 27 per cent over the last 12 months - showing that the looming economic slowdown should have been expected by the Government, says Labour’s Economic Development Spokesperson David Clark. “The Chinese economic slowdown should… ...
    7 days ago
  • National should support all families for 26 weeks
    Families with multiple babies, and those born prematurely or with disabilities, are the winners from moves to extend paid parental leave to 26 weeks but the Government must give all babies the same head start in life, Labour’s spokesperson for… ...
    7 days ago
  • National’s health and safety shambles puts school camps at risk
    Reports that schools are considering scrapping student camps and tearing out playgrounds highlights just how badly National has managed its health and safety reforms, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Schools have been left completely in the dark about the… ...
    7 days ago
  • National’s asset stripping agenda hits schools
    National’s fire-sale of school houses and land is short-sighted, mean-spirited, and will have huge unintended consequences that we will pay for in years to come, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. Documents obtained by Labour show the Ministry of Education… ...
    7 days ago
  • Takahe massacre supposed to get all New Zealanders involved in conservation
    The Minister’s claim that a  botched cull of one of New Zealand’s rarest birds was a way of getting all New Zealanders involved in conservation is offensive and ludicrous, Labour’s conservation spokesperson Ruth Dyson says.  “An email from Minister Maggie… ...
    1 week ago
  • Serco circus rolls on with revelations of fight club practice
    Further revelations that a Serco prison guard was coaching inmates on fight club techniques confirms a fully independent inquiry needs to take place, says Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Kelvin Davis. “The Minister’s statement today that a guard was coaching sparring techniques… ...
    1 week ago
  • Government targets put ahead of students’ education
    The Government must urgently reassess the way it sets NCEA targets after a new report found they are forcing schools to “credit farm” and are undermining the qualification, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “A PPTA report released today says… ...
    1 week ago
  • ER patients in corridors as health cuts bite
    Patients are being forced to wait for hours on beds in corridors as cash strapped hospitals struggle to keep up with budget cuts, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King. “People coming to the emergency room and being forced to wait… ...
    1 week ago
  • Not too late to fix Health and Safety for New Zealand’s workers
    The Government and its minor party supporters are showing an arrogant disregard for workers’ lives by not agreeing to a cross-party solution to the botched Health and Safety bill, Opposition leader Andrew Little says. “Yesterday I wrote to the Prime… ...
    1 week ago
  • Speech to the New Zealand Council of Infrastructure Development
    Tēnā Kotou Katoa. Thank you so much for having me along to speak today. Can I begin by acknowledging John Rae, the President, and Stephen Selwood, the chief executive of the Council for Infrastructure Development. ...
    1 week ago
  • Reserve Bank points finger at Govt inaction
    In scathing criticism of the Government’s inaction, the Reserve Bank says Auckland housing supply is growing nowhere near fast enough to make a dent the housing shortage, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. Reserve Bank deputy governor Grant Spencer today… ...
    1 week ago
  • Chickens come home to roost on climate change
    The Government’s gutting of the Emissions Trading Scheme has caused foresters to leave and emissions to rise, says Labour’s Climate Change spokesperson Megan Woods. “The release of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Facts and Figures Report for 2014 on the ETS… ...
    1 week ago
  • Website adds to long list of big spends at MBIE
    The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s $560,000 outlay on its new website is further evidence of excessive spending by Steven Joyce on his pet project super ministry, Labour’s Economic Development spokesperson David Clark says.  “Hot on the heels of… ...
    1 week ago
  • Brownlee warned over EQC repairs but ignored them
    Gerry Brownlee was warned that EQC’s underfloor repairs weren’t being done properly by industry experts, the cross party working group and in public but he arrogantly ignored them all, says Labour’s Earthquake Commission spokesperson Clayton Cosgrove.  “Today’s apology and commitment… ...
    1 week ago
  • Serco wants in on state house sell off
    The Government must keep scandal plagued outsourcing company Serco away from our state housing after their disastrous record running Mt Eden prison, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. "Today it has emerged that at the same time Serco was under… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Come clean on Pasifika education centre
    Minister Peseta Sam Lotu-Iinga needs to come clean and tell the Pasifika communities if he’s working to save the Pasifika Education Centre or shut it down, Labour’s Pasifika spokesperson Su’a William Sio says.  “I’m gutted the Pasifika Education Centre funding… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Time for NZTA to work on alternatives to flyover
    The High Court decision rejecting the New Zealand Transport Agency’s attempts to build the Basin Reserve flyover must now mean that NZTA finally works with the community on other options for transport solutions in Wellington, Grant Robertson and Annette King… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Shiny new system leads to record truancy
    Record high truancy rates shows the Government’s much-vaunted new attendance system is an abysmal failure, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Data released today shows truancy rates have spiked more than 15 per cent in 2014 and are now at… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Woodhouse wrong about quarries
      The Minister for Workplace Relations and Safety Michael Woodhouse was wrong yesterday when he said limestone quarries were covered by the farcical Health and Safety legislation, says Labour’s Associate Labour spokesperson Sue Moroney.  “He said he ‘understood’ limestone quarries… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Taxpayers money spent on culling one of our rarest birds
    It beggars belief that four endangered takahe were killed by incompetent cullers contracted to the Department of Conservation and the Minister must explain this wanton destruction, says Conservation spokesperson Ruth Dyson. “It must not be forgotten that there are only… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Housing NZ must immediately move family
    Housing New Zealand must immediately move a Glen Innes family whose son contracted serious and potentially fatal health problems from the appalling condition of their state house, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “Te Ao Marama Wensor and community workers… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • No understanding of the value of overseas investment
     The Government has now admitted it has absolutely no idea of the actual value of foreign investment in New Zealand, says Labour’s Land Information spokesperson Stuart Nash.  “It is crucial that the Government starts to understand just what this overseas… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Another bridges bribe from Simon Bridges
    Simon Bridges is embroiled in another bridges-for-votes controversy after admitting funding for a replacement bridge in Queenstown is “very much about… the 2017 election”, Labour’s Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Transport Minister is today reported as telling Queenstown locals… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Saudi tender process reeks of SkyCity approach
    The tender process for the $6m investment in a Saudi sheep farm reeks like the SkyCity convention centre deal and once again contravenes the government’s own procurement rules, says Labour’s Export Growth and Trade spokesperson David Parker. “The $6m contract… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Maori Party should stand up for workers
    The Government’s proposed Health and Safety Reform Bill does not go far enough to protect those in specific industries with the highest rates of workplace deaths, says Maori Development Spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta. “We are told that Maori workers are more… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Minister must explain budget blowout
    Māori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell must explain a budget blow out at Te Puni Kokiri, after the organisation spent more than 2.5 million dollars over their budget for contractors, says Labour’s Associate Māori Development spokesperson Peeni Henare.  “For the… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Successful effort to raise the issue of GE trees in proposed standard
    Many thousands of people submitted on the proposed National Environmental Standard –  Plantation Forestry (NES-PF).  A vast majority of the public submissions were particularly focussed on the NES having included GE trees in its mandate. People want these provisions removed,… ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Fair Share Friday – Thoughts and Reflections
    As part of our Fair Share  campaign, Green MPs have been doing a series of visits to community groups across the country to have conversations about inequality in New Zealand and what communities are experiencing on the ground. I visited… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Crucial Auditor General investigation welcomed
    The Auditor General’s decision to investigate the Saudi sheep scandal is important, necessary and welcome, Labour’s Trade and Export Growth spokesperson David Parker says. “The independent functions of the Auditor General are a cornerstone of the New Zealand system of… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • KiwiSaver sign-ups continue to fall
    New KiwiSaver sign-ups in July were 45 per cent below the monthly average, despite John Key saying axing the kickstart “will not make a blind bit of difference to the number of people who join KiwiSaver”, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson… ...
    2 weeks ago

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