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The Standard

Open mike 09/02/2014

Written By: - Date published: 7:15 am, February 9th, 2014 - 107 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

openmike

Open mike is your post.

For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).

Step up to the mike …

 

107 comments on “Open mike 09/02/2014”

  1. North 1

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/kerre-mcivor-on-new-zealand/news/article.cfm?c_id=1502870&objectid=11198649

    More obfuscatory waffle from McIvor nee Woodham on a Sunday.

    “The commemorations at Waitangi involve coming together to share a special day with ritual, good food, fun and a few good stoushes – just like any other family get together, really, isn’t it?”.

    • Will@Welly 1.1

      Some columnists should simply write, “As a paid up member of the NACT Party, I tow the following party line …………………………” But that would be too obvious.

    • freedom 1.2

      I for one would be very interested in knowing what her [and others’] remuneration is for these opinions.

      I read fb posts that and are not only longer but have far less bias. There are tweets out there that contain more considered opinion and do so in greater depth.

      I repeat what I wrote earlier
      With Stuff and The Herald being the principal sources of daily news for the majority of kiwis, what hope does the public have of informed debate this election?

    • Paul 1.3

      Another example of the dregs that the Herald employs to sell its corporate lies.

  2. Descendant Of Sssmith 2

    As if arms dealers had any integrity anyway.

    When Antonis Kantas, a deputy in the Defense Ministry here, spoke up against the purchase of expensive German-made tanks in 2001, a representative of the tank’s manufacturer stopped by his office to leave a satchel on his sofa. It contained 600,000 euros, about $814,000. Other arms manufacturers eager to make deals came by, too, some guiding him through the ins and outs of international banking and then paying him off with deposits to his overseas accounts.

    At the time, Mr. Kantas, a wiry former military officer, did not actually have the authority to decide much of anything on his own. But corruption was so rampant inside the Greek equivalent of the Pentagon that even a man of his relatively modest rank, he testified recently, was able to amass nearly $19 million in just five years on the job.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2014/02/08/world/europe/so-many-bribes-a-greek-official-cant-recall-all.html?hpw&rref=world&_r=0

  3. freedom 3

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/9701077/Kiwis-guest-workers-in-Australia-Key

    “Key’s trip to Australia underscored the success of his Government in knocking the books back into shape after years of belt tightening – earning Key accolades from Abbott as an inspiration and a mentor. ”

    W T F ???
    knocking the books back into shape ?
    There are not enough words in the dictionary to adequately explain how flawed that statement is.

    With Stuff and The Herald being the principal sources of daily news for the majority of kiwis, what hope does the public have of informed debate this election?

    • Tautoko Viper 3.1

      “knocking the books back into shape ?” That’s garbage!!

      This from the National Party:
      “The level of public debt in New Zealand was $8 billion when National came into office in 2008. It’s now $53 billion, and it’s forecast to rise to $72 billion in 2016. Without selling minority shares in five companies, it would rise to $78 billion. Our total investment liabilities, which cover both public and private liabilities, are $150 billion – one of the worst in the world because of the high levels of private debt in New Zealand.

      Like every household in New Zealand, we know how important it is to live within our means by budgeting carefully and deciding on our priorities.”
      http://www.national.org.nz/mixed-ownership.”

      • RedBaronCV 3.1.1

        An another complete and utter lie by the Nact’s because nobody has any idea whatsoever about the value of assets that are owned by New Zealander’s offshore. Some have local tax implications but many do not and no data is collected about the capital sums involved. And of course even when they should be disclosed they may not be.

        So private assets owned offshore should be offset against private debt

    • BM 3.2

      Yep, good times ahead for NZ and you can put the down to the brilliance of John Key and his National government.

      50%+ at the next election is pretty much a certainty, especially after the idiocy of the best start debacle and then topped off with the racist bizarre ramblings of Labour party candidate Deborah Russell.

      Two real clangers and we’re only in February.

      • Tiger Mountain 3.2.1

        The tory shit sprayer seems to have turbo boost turned way down today if that is the best BM can offer.

        The brilliance of John Phillip ShonKey was certainly on show in Australia last week, he showed ’em. Sick really, National exacerbates the conditions that cause kiwi flight to Australia then the PM grovels for a few miserable concessions for the refugees from slashed and burnt and under supported NZ industry.

      • Skinny 3.2.2

        Key-National are their own worst enermy BM. Benefit bashing, dealing to the youth, poor and everyone else who didn’t turned out to vote last time.

        Voting is going to be in this year thanks to JK & Co, it’s going to be a white wash!

      • freedom 3.2.3

        There is a stumbling uncertainty in your spin today BM,
        Could it be the earworm of truth has eaten into your addled brainstem
        Is it singing an aria of enlightenment down into the ideological oubliette you call on for ideas
        Could it be there is a consciousness in there after all
        Trying to escape into the light

        There is a haunting desperation in your words
        A present lack of conviction giving you away

        Have you finally realised that despite your lies
        Your propaganda
        Your hatred
        You cannot put food on your table as easily as you once did

        Are you hurting BM? Are you feeling the pinch a little?

        Would it help you to know that hundreds of thousands of kiwis are beginning the same transformative process and are also grappling with that heart rending moment of truth

        They too are acknowledging that manure makes a lousy Amuse-bouche

        • srylands 3.2.3.1

          “Would it help you to know that hundreds of thousands of kiwis are beginning the same transformative process and are also grappling with that heart rending moment of truth”

          Good grief. BM is hyperbolic, obviously. But do you folk ever get out? I do. All around the country from the deep south to the Bay of Islands.

          The country is PUMPING. Bars and eating places are packed. The shopping malls are heaving. Every hospitality venue I went to in Westland was staffed by European travellers – I mean hundreds of them – because of a shortage of domestic labour.

          OK lets look at some empirics. 63.5% of those in the last RM survey said the country is “heading in the right direction”. That is 10% points up since DC took over as Labour Party leader.

          As far as I can find, it is currently the highest rating of this type in the WORLD. (This survey is used all over the OECD).

          http://www.roymorgan.com/morganpoll/new-zealand/nz-government-confidence

          So keep up your class warfare. You sound like a bunch of story boards from the 1950s my father used to tell me about. I guess you have always been around but now you congregte at The Standard.

          • BM 3.2.3.1.1

            This.

            For sure there’s a few people struggling but there always will be.

            Generally though most people aren’t which is why Labour’s getting no traction with the tales of woe they’re trying to push out into the media.

            Labour needs to ditch the negative shit and actually demonstrate why they’d be a better government than National.
            And by better government I don’t mean take money off one group of people and give it to another group who unsurprisingly represents their core voters.

            I want to see how they’re going to make the pie bigger so every ones better off, if they can’t demonstrate that they should just get the fuck out of the way.

            • tricledrown 3.2.3.1.1.1

              Bumptious Midden.
              More propaganda from 5 eyes.
              Broken promises is all we’ve had from your Nactional coalition
              1 year out of 5 of growth.
              Child poverty increasing.
              Middle classes paying taxes while the rich pay nothing .
              Higher real unemployment.
              Bene bullying and bashing.
              Real good paying jobs nowhere to be found except in Auckland and ChCh where living costs are sky rocketing because of Nactional party promoting property bubble speculation.

          • tricledrown 3.2.3.1.2

            Serial liar and fraudster
            The middle classes don,t agree with your pathetic propaganda.TV3 poll
            As they are getting squeezed into the working poor classes as you fully know that’s your job at 5 eyes to con Enough middle class voters into believing your BS.
            Fuck offf 5 eyed fuckwit.

          • phillip ure 3.2.3.1.3

            “..from the deep south to the Bay of Islands…”

            ..maybe next time you head to the bay of islands..mr soury-lands..

            ..maybe you should turn left @ kawakawa..

            ..and go and experience the east/west divide/gulf that is the north..

            ..go spend half a day in kaikohe..a half a day in kaitaia..

            ..go take the ‘pumping’-pulse of those places..eh..?

            ..go see the grinding miseries that define poverty like we have..

            ..and yes..greedy tory-prick class-warriors like yrslf..have..in yr own words..

            ..’always been around’..

            ..and you..are one of them..

            ..as you sit in a cafe in ‘pumping’-russell…

            ..you couldn’t care fucken less that a few short miles away..

            ..over on ‘the other’ side of the north..

            ..there are children with third world diseases of/from poverty..

            ..and lots of them..

            ..(and this all part of your handiwork..eh..?..

            ..the manifestation of yr ‘beliefs’/prescriptions for society.)..

            ..but you don’t fucken care about that..do you..?

            ..’cos you are..and always have been ..

            ..a slimy uncaring fucken tory-toad..

            ..eh..?

            ..phillip ure..

            • tricledrown 3.2.3.1.3.1

              RNZ this morning 11.30.
              The conservative right manurfacturing uncertaity.

              • i’m with pandora..

                ..i have 35 different genre/themed streams up and running..

                ..and on shuffle…

                (currently listening to ‘bugs henderson’..’it’s my own fault..baby’..(johnny winterish blues..)

                ..what was that ‘uncertainty’ being ‘manufactured’..?

                phillip ure..

                • followed by ‘blister in the sun’..violent femmes..

                  ..mmm!!!..tasty..!

                  ..then ‘nine hundred miles’..by barbara dane..

                  ..i love shuffle..!

                  ..then ‘crossroads’..by cream..live..

                  phillip ure..

              • veutoviper

                Here is the RNZ recording for this (Counterpoint section).

                It was very interesting nd worth listening to.

                http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/sunday/audio/2585086/wayne-brittenden's-counterpoint-for-9-february-2014

                • swordfish

                  Cheers, V.

                  Brittenden’s always worth the listen. Nice overview of the neo-liberal corruption of western soc dem parties.

                  Particularly liked: “social darwinism = the survival of the fattest”

                  • srylands

                    I listened to this. It was the greatest load of crap. That academic from Colorado stringing together platitudes about the evils of “neoliberalism”. Notice that Cunliffe doesn’t talk much about “neoliberalism” on the hustings. That is because the punters buying boats and ipads won’t have a fucking clue what he is talking about. And he aint stupid.

                    There is no alternative to promoting efficient markets and trade liberalisation. Cunliffe knows that. And if Labour wins that is what you will get, with some token “embroidery” on the great fabric of neoliberal policy (to paraphrase the great Paul Keating).

                    No future government will change the pillars of New Zealand economic policy. There is no alternative.

                    [lprent: I auto-spam overworked phrases when I get irritated with them from all sides. Be advised that I frequently ban the morons who make them when they cause me too much work. It is usually safer to use the actual names unless your phrase is new becasue I will only correct a few times. Assess the risk. ]

            • PapaMike 3.2.3.1.3.2

              Philip

              Your comment re turn left at Kawakawa is very pertinent.
              So why cannot Ngapuhi get their act together, as it would be for the benefit of those effective outcasts to the west of Kawakawa. Or will it ?
              All that is happening now is a fight between certain families as who is going to be rich and control and be the beneficiary of the $600,000,000, and who is going to remain poor.
              What about all the peoples of Ngapuhi ?
              They do not appear to matter.

            • Naki Man 3.2.3.1.3.3

              There are bugger all jobs in some towns up north so these people have two choices, either be long term unemployed or get a job in another town and move. Would you really want your kids to grow up in a shit hole where they will struggle to get a job? Lots of people move for work its just a matter of getting off your arse.

              • so..just de-populate the north..?

                ..that’s the naki-solution..?

                ..what a simple/simplistic world you live in..eh..?..

                ..a typical mono-brain..

                ..have you met soury-lands yet..?

                ..maybe if you both got together you could get a faux-stereo-brain thing happening..

                ..eh..?..

                ..with a bit of luck..?

                ..phillip ure..

              • Murray Olsen

                The District mayor moved. He moved the council facilities from Kaikohe to Kerikeri so he’d be closer to his developer mates as they cut down the remaining forest.

            • Murray Olsen 3.2.3.1.3.4

              Opua’s pumping too. Pumping raw sewerage from NAct yachts into the estuary and making the oysters unfit for human consumption. Out past Kerikeri is pumping as well. Pumping MacMansions into kiwi habitat, all with the connivance of the District Council.

              Auckland shopping malls are heaving? Yeah, sure. I was back recently and was amazed at how empty they were, despite everything being on sale. But then I doubt if I visit the same places SSLands does, because I actually have family and friends in Aotearoa, whereas he’s just an Aussie tourist. Or at most, a researcher for Crosby Textor.

          • freedom 3.2.3.1.4

            This is the same OECD where our wages are rated against each other despite the fact most of them have tax free allowances built in and we don’t? that OECD ?

            The same OECD which somehow forgets to highlight the skyrocketing % of debt-per-capita that NZ has suffered since National took office?

            and as for “European travellers” in the workplace,

            It is not for lack of kiwis wanting to work. It is because of the choices made by the business owners. Often explained to customers as a move made on their behalf to make their touristy guests feel more comfortable. In reality it is just cheaper than kiwi labour. These places, usually scenic in nature, or hub related, are filled with staff on short term contract deals, largely cash and/or barter based [some pay + tourist services + accommodation] where, if most of the details were actually known to you, you would be ranting against just as strongly. Let’s just say that hospitality is no different than banking, there is always some creative book keeping involved.

            Look at the explosion of Chinese tourism into NZ. Whole networks with barely a kiwi on the staff anywhere. From the minute they get off the plane to the day they depart. I guess that is because of dole bludging no hopers with no interest in working? Nothing to do with the decisions of the business owners. You know, the market gods you have so much faith in.

            srylands, I think I have mentioned this to you before but I have spent the majority of my working life in hospitality all over NZ , so don’t even try to talk about your vast expertise on that topic. Customers, as a rule, know jack about the hospitality industry. Recent discussion around bar restrictions and closing hours show how little thought is given to the workers in those industries. The fact that hospo staff might want a social life too, seems beyond most people’s consideration.

            Consideration, that is an interesting term in relation to the unemployed.
            Take this past week, where after sending off a dozen job hunt emails (with no reply of course), doing a bit of TS PPP time, finalising a business plan for a new venture that should lead to self-employment, (fingers crossed) hanging a new exhibition, overseeing the final OSH planning for an Organics Education weekend, being invited to present a new series of bone carvings to be exhibited during Matariki, negotiating the plans for a bookcase/screen for a local cafe and helping a friend get checked into a psych ward, I get called in to WINZ to spend 90 minutes explaining why I have not yet found a job and I should really fill in some boxes on a piece of paper that will help me find a career path. WTF!!!. Oh yeah it’s all those dole bludgers fault and their unwillingness to work.

            Back to you though, and your expertise. I say you know little to nothing about hospitality. The same as I know very little about moving around numbers representing money earned by other people using software programmes built by other people whilst I write meaningless reports to be read by someone maybe, all the while sitting in a chair someone else made, in an office others built, drinking coffee grown and produced by someone else. What is it you contribute again?

            -a week ago I thought I had the strength to ignore the idiots,
            but just when you think you got out, they pull you back in :)

            excuse the rant folks, i know what the report card reads – must try harder

            • weka 3.2.3.1.4.1

              Bloody good rant freedom.

              Your paragraph about your week is both a damning indictment of Bennett’s welfare reforms and a brilliant argument for the UBI. Even without the UBI I read your story and think about all the ways that WINZ could support you to be continuing with all the amazing things you are doing, instead of putting soul-destroying obstacles in your way.

              I agree re tourism/hospo jobs. Friends I’ve got living in tourist towns tell similar stories, and it’s crap to say there is a shortage of kiwi labour. As well as the wages, there is the issue of the casual nature of the work. Travellers or visitors here on work visas but who are really here for a working holiday are happy to work 20 hours one week, 5 hours the next and to be let go at no notice. Those who are permanent with high rents, kids to feed etc can’t manage with those conditions.

              The other troubling thing about the current immigration/visa/work policy is that we are creating the same problems that the UK has majorly ie ‘foreigners taking our jobs’, with the potential for the bigotry to increase substantially.

              • freedom

                I was remiss in not mentioning that the few staff I interact with at WINZ are trying hard to help. They are doing what they can, but the current environment they operate under has tied their hands. They know the work is not out there.

                They simply do not have the autonomy they used to. Their entire operational framework is now all about following whatever ‘meet this target’ law is sent down from central office. I hate seeing the difficulties the WINZ front lines are facing. The WINZ front line staff are dealing with some of this country’s greatest troubles, in impossibly difficult circumstances and doing so in a thankless, largely misunderstood and often threatening environment.

            • just saying 3.2.3.1.4.2

              Excuse it?

              Rant on

              and kia kaha

            • Will@Welly 3.2.3.1.4.3

              In the late 80’s/early 90’s when it looked like Japan was going to overwhelm the New Zealand tourist sector, we faced a similar dilemma. Japanese tourists were paying for their fares in Japan, staying in mainly accommodation controlled by Japanese shareholders, so tariffs were paid in Japan, shopping in Japanese run shops, run by Japanese operators, whose staff were paid in accounts held in Japan. Very little money at the time was actually following into the New Zealand economy.

          • tricledrown 3.2.3.1.5

            Serialiar
            5 eyed fuckwit
            Your ideology is taking us back to dickensian days.
            How much does 5 eyes pay you.
            Mcguffin.

          • bad12 3.2.3.1.6

            SSLands, you forgot a little in your elongated rant,(presumably generated by this mornings major alcohol hangover),

            The country is PUMPING, a large proportion of the flow from the pump being generated by the ongoing splurge of house price inflation and all the major banks attaching credit cards to the billions in private household mortgages those banks hold,

            The Reserve Bank is set to start raising the cash rate this year by probably a full % point by the years end which will probably translate to a 2-3% rise in floating bank rates immediately and a similar effect on fixed mortgages as they become liable for renewal,

            The abrupt halt rising interest rates will cause in the sugar rush of credit card spending will crash ‘growth’ in the final quarter of 2014/first quarter of 2015, (timed to suit the National Government re-election aspirations) and ‘growth’ will contract by 1-1.5% resulting in another 20,000 unemployed…

          • Paul 3.2.3.1.7

            Then don’t come here.
            Talk to your mates at the sewer.

      • David H 3.2.4

        Shit BM what you taking and can I have some?

        • blue leopard (Get Lost GCSB Bill) 3.2.4.1

          @ David H

          It is the ‘high’ (rather it is a dazed and confused state) that little twerps get from the delusional view that working for the top wealthy 0.01% Club is the same as being in that Club.

          It requires a high level of ability to believe false information, swallowing hook, line and sinker all lies propagated by a self-serving small minded and hostile bunch of ‘people’ (if you can refer to them as that – creatures? thingummies?) and requires strict obedience to that bunch of ‘people’. It requires a high degree of disconnection from oneself and ones fellow people, a lack of self awareness and an ability to lie to oneself and one’s family, friends and compatriots.

          It leads to an ability to act against ones own and one’s communities greatest interests – all in the name of the delusional belief that all this obedience somehow puts one in The Club, when really all you have become is a hollowed out approximation of a human and more closely resemble a human club (as in thing you hit others over the head with).

          Do you really want what BM is on?

          • David H 3.2.4.1.1

            Hmmm on second thoughts, maybe i’ll just keep my little foibles, and BM can just stew in his delusions.

            Phew… Thank’s Blue Leopard, saved me from a mindset worse than death.

    • Ron 3.3

      You should be grateful to Key. If Ab bott sees Key as a mentor then we should not have to wait too long before Australia is completely stuffed

    • Naki Man 3.4

      They are talking about the current account. Its not that hard to follow. Abbott is under huge pressure to do the same as National have. Don’t you like hearing what a great job National are doing.

      • Paul 3.4.1

        I expect Fairfax Media to write propaganda supporting a government that benefits the wealthy over the poor and foreign corporate interests over the civil rights of NZ citizens.
        So hearing from them ‘what a great job National are doing’ is predictable.
        After all, their largest shareholder, with a stake of approximately 14.9% is Gina Rinehart, the wealthiest person in Australia.
        NI guess naki you believe greed is good and share the same sociopathic ideals as srylands.
        Dull.

        • Naki Man 3.4.1.1

          Are you talking about all the wealthy people that have been earning a small fortune working for Gina Rinehart in the mining industry in Australia?

  4. Skinny 4

    Dear Genesis Energy,

     Thank you for the offer of a 2 year fixed term contract.

     Your offer of a price increase amounting to a 5.98 % rise per month was hotly debated in our house hold.

     However rather than be locked in for 2 years we have decided to tell you to fuck off and we will be closing our account preferring to shop elsewhere.

    Please feel free to disclose to potential 
    investors how many former loyal customer have done the same.

    Regards

    Mr Ha Ha  

  5. http://whoar.co.nz/2014/how-lapdog-journalism-led-to-the-financial-crisis-comment-and-how-our-business-media-of-the-time-manymost-still-there-pontificatingneo-lib-apologising-away-both-sucked-and-blew/

    (excerpt..)

    (ed:..and here in new zealand..the business-media were also a shocker..

    ..dutifully/unthinkingly reprinting the corporate-handouts/messages they were fed..

    ..and what compounds/(ed) this..

    ..is/was their willful(?) ignoring of the ever-growing warning-chorus internationally..

    ..with perhaps a nadir reached for them when they dutifully reprinted the absolute horse-shit/bullshit from treasury..

    ..just prior to the 2008 election..

    ..that what became known as the ‘great financial crisis’..

    would be ‘all over early in the new year’..

    of 2009..(!)..)

    (cont..)

    phillip ure..

  6. Colonial Viper 6

    US ‘privileged’ white male labor force participation rate continues to collapse.

    50 year drop accelerating.

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2014-02-07/white-men-still-cant-work

    • Bill 6.1

      I guess if there were also charts for black or Latino men over 20 that showed ‘Labor Force Participation’ at 72% or more, then the inverted commas might make sense. And, if further charts for white women and black and Latino women showed similar participation rates, then the inverted commas might even seem a tad justified. But only within the sphere of economic participation.

      And only a tad, because, you know, wage rates, security of employment, and job position would also have to be taken into account.

      Then, if we looked at more general indicators of privilege and discrimination and found that white men were subjected to the same systemic racism and sexism etc…then yeah, then the inverted commas would be justified. In fact, the term should rightly be dropped from the sentence/statement at that point.

      But since that isn’t the case, your inverted commas only serve to diminish the point that even systemically privileged white men are getting the squeeze. Sometimes Tat, deliberately projecting your blind spot goes beyond the cynical dismissing of important oppressions, y’know?

      • gem 6.1.1

        I think the point though is that structural advantages have not counted for much in the face of factors like offshoring of production and the financialisation of the economy. It’s a complicated picture because of all the different changes over that period, so not easy to make comparisons (another instance where ‘facts’ on their own are inadequate).
        Labour force participation for women is higher than in the 1950s because of feminism and economic changes. Partly because the population is ageing, many women work in aged care industries. And upheaval in the economy means fewer adult children live near their parents, thus more need for social services.
        I don’t know whether women in the aged care industry are better off now, where they are clearly exploited, than say 50 years ago, when they might have cared for the elderly and disabled in their family/whanau/community, and not received remuneration, but their partner earned sufficient income to support a family.

        • Bill 6.1.1.1

          I think the point though is that structural advantages have not counted for much…

          That overall economic opportunities may not be the same as in previous decades has absolutely no impact on how systemic disdvantage plays out. If people belonging to a generally privileged group are suffering more, then what do you reckon the situation is for those in generally disadvantaged groups? Are you suggesting that they might be in a relatively better position than before!?

    • QoT 6.2

      Oh shit, finally the white dudes are suffering after everyone else has been screwed to breaking point, call a fucking waaaaaaaaahmbulance.

      Like Bill said, the funny thing is how you’re diminishing your own point – about how everyone is getting hurt by the current economic situation, and how this is demonstrated by the fact that the most privileged groups in society are also getting screwed – because you just can’t handle the fact that sometimes progressive politics isn’t about directly benefiting you.

  7. Steve James 7

    This from Genesis last year when I questioned a 13% price rise. For the following to be true either each of the costs have increased by at least 13% or some have increased by much more.
    Genesis, owned wholly by us and yet lies and gouges.

    Tuesday, June 11, 2013 2:21 PM

    Good Afternoon Steve

    Thank you for your email.

    I understand price increases are concerning. We have not increased prices since April 2012 in your area. We have chosen during that time not to pass on any increased costs; however, we are unable to do that again this year and have had to pass those on to you.

    The new electricity prices reflect increases in:

    • transmission and distribution costs
    • costs associated with servicing customers
    • the expected future cost of wholesale energy
    • our margins to maintain a reasonable return
    • EC (Electricity Commission) Levies

    Genesis Energy is confident that after recent increases it will continue to provide competitive prices to consumers in Christchurch. Customers can be confident that Genesis Energy is doing everything possible to manage its costs appropriately. A number of business improvement and cost efficiency programmes are underway throughout our generation and retailing business.

    Our promise to our customers is to provide you with one of the most reliable energy sources in New Zealand and our focus is on customer service.

    Enjoy your day.

    Regards

    Raewyn
    Customer Services Representative – Administration Genesis Energy
    Phone: 0800 300 400
    Contact Us : 8.00am-8.00pm Monday to Friday
    Email: info@genesisenergy.co.nz
    Web: http://www.genesisenergy.co.nz

    • freedom 7.1

      Dear Steve

      When the wholesale price for electricity is artificially inflated and [unethically manipulated] of course the retail side of the equation will also be flawed. Why do you have so much trouble admitting accepting or even understanding that the main issue with electricity pricing is the market driven hunt for profit at the point of production and not simply the ticket clipping that occurs along the way.

      • Steve James 7.1.1

        Hello freedom

        Mainly because when I worked at Meridian I learned the prices where tendered for by the various electricity retailers; that’s just competition and makes sense because the retailers had a reasonable idea of their expected usage. So the tender included a demand and price offer. A Canadian company called Transalta (for memory) went broke because they failed to make the tender deadline in 2000 and were charged a retail rate by Meridian production.

        My observation is clear; a 13% price increase I believe cannot be justified by the response I was provided. If Genesis had simply stated “we want more profit” I would believe that; I am personally very intolerant of any fabrications of the truth. The intention of my post was to inform others of probable price gauging by Genesis. Mind you it’s got to make their shares more attractive.

        • freedom 7.1.1.1

          What about the fact the successful tender is the second highest bid and not the lowest bid?
          You know the exact opposite of what they do when they want something built!
          Does that compute in your brain at all when trying to spin the scale of the rort that is electricity production in New Zealand?

          thought not

    • Skinny 7.2

      I received the same price hike of 13% with their latest fixed term offer that makes the rise 18.98%

      I am yet to see MSM come out with decent journalistic coverage of the effects of Key-Nationals assets sales.
      This is exactly why power providers need to be regulated.

    • greywarbler 7.3

      .
      This from Steve James at 7.

      The new electricity prices reflect increases in:
      • transmission and distribution costs
      • costs associated with servicing customers
      • the expected future cost of wholesale energy
      • our margins to maintain a reasonable return
      • EC (Electricity Commission) Levies

      This point needs studying:

      • our margins to maintain a reasonable return

      This from the electricity company is a small number of words with a big meaning and effect.

      I was thinking that in a low inflation environment with static wages, these companies can find a case to give customers for raising their prices, by continually getting their assets revalued which is likely to be up or they wouldn’t follow the practice, and then applying the set percentage that they expect to receive back. And 10% has been bandied about, though tht seems quite high on non-risk investments. So obviously if something that was valued at $1 million is revalued at $1.5 million but the same set percentage is applied, the return on assets is going to provide a higher amount. This then must be sadly, passed on to the consumer as necessary and explained away as resulting from rising costs.

      This when viewed objectively, reminds me very much of the faux concern that unions involved with the ferries expressed every time they went on strike for more money at times of most demand, holidays etc.

      It’s just an entity squeezing the public for more money to them, for little or no extra services or infrastructure. Greedy unions or corporates, same attitudes, from different perspectives, result same to consumers, pay more to us. A bit of unpacking of the background to some of the supposedly rational behaviours in the production of goods and services is called for.

      • Bill 7.3.1

        Shame about the ‘greedy unions’ part of your comment. Obvious point is that the unions gain nothing from negotiations – the members do. I take your point about tactics sometimes being woefully thought out though and effects of strike action hitting the wrong target. (in the case of ferries, customers rather than than solely the bosses pocket)

  8. tricledrown 8

    Serial liar and fraudster
    No New zealander calls Westland westland you are full of shit.
    The Kiwis are all in Australia getting decent wages.
    Hundreds of foriegners bullshit again .
    You have no eye deer.
    5 eyed fuckwit sryland.

    • North 8.1

      How ridiculous is SSLands triumphalism given the speciousness of the poll enquiry as to “direction”.

      The poll question is undeniably suspect –

      “[GENERALLY] speaking, do you [FEEL] that [THINGS] in New Zealand are heading in the right direction ?…………..or would you [SAY] [THINGS] are [SERIOUSLY] heading in the wrong direction ?”

      For a start the question lacks definitional bounds – what does [THINGS] mean ?

      Secondly, the first alternative only minimally tests the respondent. It is a more or less enquiry as to the respondent’s general senses, which senses may be based on superb objective knowledge, or rank subjective ignorance. There is plenty of wiggle room.

      In contrast the second alternative tests the respondent considerably more. The respondent is required to mentally address specifics, viz. matter/s which the respondent can honourably define to him/herself, in his/her knowledge, as tending to a direction [SERIOUSLY] wrong, not just wrong, but [SERIOUSLY] wrong. There is the heightened test.

      Of course the intellectually dishonest blowhard SSLands will dismiss my point but that would be to say that ALL those who responded with “generally, right direction” see no wrong in child poverty for example. So really, this right direction/wrong direction business says little. It is specious.

      What is significant is that Mr 62% is now Mr 39% and falling. A “dislikeability” factor is operative. Don’t forget, we have KDC and “Liar Liar” yet to come. Triumphalise on and good luck in your travels through the pumping malls and bars of the nation, old goat you.

    • SHG (not Colonial Viper) 8.2

      No New zealander calls Westland westland you are full of shit.

      Wtf

  9. greywarbler 9

    Here are two good radio docos.
    The first on Income inequality –
    and amongst others featuring Max Rushbrooke, is well worth a listen. And gives interesting ‘insight’ into how Phil O’Reilly, and various economists, can explain our economy ad being as satisfctory and understandable as a ball getting balanced on a seal’s nose. Myself I feel they are dissembling. What do you think?

    was on Sunday 9/Feb/2014 at 8.15 am and is to be repeated on Radionz on Monday 10 February at 7.30pm
    and Wednesday at 12.30 a.m.

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/insight
    Insight – Sunday 9 February 2014, with Philippa Tolley
    NZ Radio Awards 2013: winner of the Best Documentary or Feature Programme & co-winner of Best Daily or Weekly series under an Hour Duration
    Insight for 9 February 2014 – Does Rich -Poor Divide Matter? ( 27′ 13″ )
    Penny Mackay investigates whether a big income gap really matters. Share Download: Ogg  |  MP3

    gap rich poor Once one of the most equal nations in the world, during the 80s and 90s New Zealand’s income gap widened faster than any other developed country.
    Equality advocates say that is too wide and is responsible for social problems including high rates of mental illness, teenage pregnancy, violence and incarceration.
    Others say obsessing about a “gap” is a distraction from tackling poverty itself.

    Penny Mackay considers both arguments and some of the offered solutions.

    Coming Up on Insight
    8:12 am Sunday 16 February: Insight: Education Solving Society’s Ills?
    Education spotlight shannon school The three main political parties, National, Labour and the Greens, started the year with major education announcements.
    Their attention put the early childhood and school sectors in the political spotlight.
    But are they beginning to expect too much from education?

    Radio New Zealand’s Education Correspondent, John Gerritsen investigates how much social and economic change the education sector can deliver, and how schools are coping with the demands being placed upon them.

  10. Bearded Git 10

    Matt McCarten brilliant today on Iwi fatcats. It’s here:

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=11198636

    • greywarbler 10.1

      Excellent, balanced and objective piece by McCarten BG.

    • tc 10.2

      Shows the arrogance and partisan politics within the upper levels of iwi, nothing new there.

      Watch the nact bundle a settlement through,full of holes, like alot of their urgency measures, then trumpet what legends they are for sorting it out.

      This will leave the subsequent claims bought about by the holes another govts issue to sort out. Par for the course really but then shonkey likes golf.

    • SHG (not Colonial Viper) 10.3

      Can’t wait to hear McCarten’s opinion on tax evasion.

  11. tricledrown 11

    Well done greywarbler.

    • adam 12.1

      Thanks Phillip I’d seen just the news rules part of that before, but the whole segment is just classic.

  12. Jenny 13

    So Andarko have found water at the bottom of the ocean.

    But what kind of water?

    Presumably it was fossil water disconnected from the main ocean for millions of years.

    How old is it?

    Are there any extremophile lifeforms in it, or is it sterile?

    Is it water left over from the time when the submarine continent that surrounds New Zealand was above the surface?

    Is it fresh water?

    Andarko may not be interested in any of these questions but others might?

    By showing no interest at all in such questions Andarko show themselves to be the scientific Philistines, heedlessly ploughing their way through the natural and human world without any thought to some of the greatest mysteries and wonders of the natural world. Their only interest is money.

    The sooner we rid ourselves of these invading marauders from our shores the better.

    You may find yourself living in a shotgun shack
    You may find yourself in another part of the world
    You may find yourself behind the wheel of a large automobile
    You may find yourself in a beautiful house with a beautiful wife
    You may ask yourself, well, how did I get here?…

    There is water at the bottom of the ocean
    Remove the water, carry the water
    Remove the water from the bottom of the ocean

    Letting the days go by, let the water hold me down
    Letting the days go by, water flowing underground
    Into the blue again, after the money’s gone
    Once in a lifetime, water flowing underground

    Into the blue again, into silent water
    Under the rocks and stones, there is water underground
    Letting the days go by, into silent water
    Once in a lifetime, water flowing underground

    You may ask yourself, what is that beautiful house?
    You may ask yourself, where does that highway lead to?
    You may ask yourself, am I right, am I wrong?
    You may say to yourself, my god, what have I done?

    Same as it ever was, same as it ever was, same as it ever was, same as it ever was
    Same as it ever was, same as it ever was, same as it ever was, same as it ever was

    Time isn’t holding us, time isn’t after us
    Time isn’t holding us, time doesn’t hold you back
    Time isn’t holding us, time isn’t after us
    Time isn’t holding us…

    Letting the days go by, letting the days go by, letting the days go by, once in a lifetime (?)

    Letting the days go by, letting the days go by, letting the days go by, once in a lifetime

    http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x12spb_talking-heads-once-in-a-lifetime_music

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/HL1401/S00063/deep-sea-drilling-the-spirit-of-mururoa.htm

  13. Craig Y 14

    Colin Craig and the US Tea Party- what is the latter, and how similar are they?

    http://www.gaynz.com/articles/publish/31/printer_14572.php

  14. Tim 15

    Hopefully Our Munsta of tha Arts and Kulcha will be listening to RNZ today – Essshhpeshlee “tha…Artson Sunny” – I mean listen from start to finish and ‘especially’ the unedited portion.
    If he did/has, I imagine he’ll be weighing up eggseklee where his peshuns loi.
    I suspect he’ll go with the bitter ole Queen option. Yesssiree John – you’re gorgeous, I love you, I offer my undying leeeeeerv!
    There goes one lonely funeral

  15. greywarbler 16

    I had a look at a No Minister post about Kiwis in Australia and didn’t find much reliable information there. So I thought I would find a bit out about this immigration business in Oz.

    It seems that nearly anyone can get a SCV (Special Category Visa).
    But that has limited benefits to you which don’t change the longer you are in the country. Fact Sheet 17 has much information.
    The SCV – It allows a New Zealand citizen to remain indefinitely and live, work or study in Australia lawfully as long as that person remains a New Zealand citizen.
    The SCV is not a permanent visa and visa holders do not have the same rights and benefits as Australian citizens or Australian permanent residents……

    Changes introduced on 26 February 2001
    A new bilateral social security arrangement between Australia and New Zealand was announced on 26 February 2001. This agreement sets out arrangements for payment of age pension, disability support pension and carer payment to New Zealand citizens in Australia.

    It also recognised the right of each country to determine access to social security benefits not covered by the agreement, and to set related residence and citizenship rules according to the respective country’s national legislative and policy frameworks. In line with that principle Australia introduced a number of supplementary changes.

    As a result, the Social Security Act 1991 requires New Zealand citizens who arrived in Australia after 26 February 2001 to apply for and be granted an Australian permanent visa to access certain social security payments (including income support payments) that are not covered by the bilateral agreement.

    To support this requirement, changes were also made to citizenship and migration legislation to require New Zealand citizens to become permanent visa holders if they want to obtain Australian citizenship or sponsor their family members for a permanent visa.

    If you want to ensure some standing you get a Permanent Visa (Residency).
    http://www.immi.gov.au/skilled/general-skilled-migration/sir.htm

    When can you apply for a permanent visa?
    You can apply for a permanent visa after you have:
    lived for two years in a Specified Regional Area and worked, including being self-employed, for one year in these same areas.
    See: Specified Regional Areas, or
    obtained sponsorship under the Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme.

    Which permanent visas can you apply for?
    You can apply for any permanent visa in Australia, however the Skilled – Regional (Residence) visa (subclass 887) is specifically designed for holders of a provisional skilled visa who want to apply for permanent residency.
    See: Skilled – Regional (Residence) Visa (Subclass 887)

    The Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme visa (subclass 857) has reduced eligibility requirements for holders of a Skilled – Regional Sponsored (Provisional) visa (subclasses 475 and 487) or a Skilled – Independent Regional (Provisional) visa (subclass 495).
    See: Concessions for the Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme Visa (Subclass 857)

    It appears that if you want to get Citizenship status you can only apply after having got a PermanentVisa.

    It seems possible that you could have dual status if the NZ Government allows this.

    • SHG (not Colonial Viper) 16.1

      Since 1 Sept 1994 any NZer arriving in Australia is automatically issued a Subclass 444 or “Special Category” Visa. The SCV allows a NZer to live and work in Australia indefinitely without needing any other sort of work or residency visa. It is not permanent; it can be revoked; you lose it by leaving Australia and you are issued a new one if you re-enter Australia.

      The SCV makes the holder ineligible for almost all Australian government welfare and financial assistance. If you’re a NZer on an SCV you can not get unemployment assistance if you lose your job, you’re not eligible for payments under the National Disability Insurance Scheme, you can not (presently) get a student loan or allowance, if your house gets burned down or washed away you are not entitled to the emergency financial assistance that your Australian neighbour gets, etc etc. If you become a burden on the Australian taxpayer (eg by going to jail) you will be put on a one-way flight to NZ upon release. A child born in Australia to parents who are NZers on SCVs does not receive Australian citizenship and is “stateless” unless the parents apply for and are granted NZ citizenship for the child by birth. A NZer on an SCV is basically a long-term guest with obligations (pay tax, obey the law) but with very few of the rights of a resident or citizen.

      Getting official Australian residency is hard. People are literally dying to get in to Australia.

      NZers on SCVs are considered no different from other immigrants where applications for permanent residency are concerned. It makes no difference that you’re already in Australia and working; if you want to become a permanent resident you have to meet the same immigration criteria as any other foreign immigrant. You must have qualifications and work in a field that Australia considers desirable (i.e. be on the “Skilled Occupations” list), be under 45 years of age, and (depending on the specific visa you’re applying for) be sponsored by your employer or be moving to a “Regional Area” where Australia needs more people in certain professions.

      There are approximately 600,000 NZers in Australia and many of them are placed in great hardship by the situation described above. I’m sure that many of those 600,000 are eligible to vote in NZ elections and would look favourably on the NZ government that helped them.

    • SHG (not Colonial Viper) 16.2

      To specifically reply to a couple of gw’s points:

      – you can only apply for Australian citizenship if you have spent two years in Australia with permanent resident status.

      – it is possible to have dual Australian and New Zealand citizenship.

      Trivia:

      – NZers who were on SCVs when the current law took effect in Feb 2001 were allowed to apply directly for citizenship if they’d been physically present in Australia for more than 12 months of the 24 months to Feb 2001. Thus Russell Crowe, who lived in Australia but was in the northern hemisphere filming first Gladiator then A Beautiful Mind during that time, did not qualify and had his Australian citizenship application rejected. And since he’s over 45 and in a nonessential profession (“actor”) he can not become a permanent resident.

      • RedLogix 16.2.1

        And here’s the nub that everyone is ignoring.

        As long as these kiwi ‘guest workers’ are in Australia, paying tax to that govt, they are not paying tax to the NZ govt who ultimately will have to pick up the tab when they return to New Zealand.

        The point is that most will not be able to retire in Australia and will almost certainly be returning to NZ and become immediately eligible for Super.

        Here is also an interesting point. Of the 850,000 odd New Zealanders who did not vote in the last election – how many would be included in this 620,000 living in Australia under this SCV?

  16. joe90 17

    Twenty five years ago we should’ve, could’ve, would’ve…..but never did a thing…

    Four former state-owned companies employed most of the Tuzla population. The contracts agreed to at the time of government sell-off stipulated that the new private owners were to advance investment in the companies, according to Deutsche Welle.

    Instead, the new owners sold the assets and halted payment to workers, leading to bankruptcy filings between 2000 and 2008. Sead Causevic, local leader in Tuzla, directed blame at the court system, saying upset workers turned to the law years ago, yet they were ignored.

    Causevic told Bosnian state TV that the “rip-off privatization” had occurred before he took office. He called the factory workers’ demands legitimate, Deutsche Welle reported.

    “It was our government that sold state assets for peanuts and left the people without pensions, jobs or health insurance,” Hana Obradovic, an unemployed graduate from Sarajevo, told Reuters.

    http://america.aljazeera.com/articles/2014/2/7/bosnia-privatizationprotestsspreadtoothercities.html

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/europe/bosnia-privatization-protests-reach-other-cities/2014/02/06/4907df00-8f65-11e3-878e-d76656564a01_story.html

  17. srylands 18

    Ipredict’s stock “There will be a Labour Prime Minister after the 2014 General Election” has just hit a 12 months low this afternoon.

    I realise this is simply one indicator, but if I was in camp Labour this would have me a little concerned.

    Last Trade Price: $0.3747

    https://www.ipredict.co.nz/app.php?do=contract_detail&contract=PM.2014.LABOUR

    • fender 18.1

      Put your mansion on Key, literally, you fucking idiot.

    • bad12 18.2

      SSLands, having nothing else of note to spray about has now become a whore touting for ipredict…

      • bad12 18.2.1

        SSLands, i realize this is only an indication but if i was in the ACT camp i wouldn’t want to be wasting money on shonky quasi-gambling websites able to manipulated with a used 20 dollar note,(you are going to need all the spare coin you have got to pay your fair share of tax as assessed by the incoming Labour/Green Government),

        Heres a few of today’s ‘predictions’ of note, National 42%, Labour 33.2%, Green 9.5 %, Internet Party 14.2%,

        Ha ha ha obviously someone like you, with a massive alcohol hangover forgot to put a . in the right place for the internet party, just goes to show how badly run that site is and how stupid you are to waste money on it…

    • mickysavage 18.3

      Yep and someone has sold a thousand shares at .38c so it will not move for a while. It also shows that someone with a bit of money is trying to give the impression that Labour’s chances are not good. And someone has also listed a thousand National PM shares at .62c so it is obviously someone trying to manipulate things.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 18.4

      In direct contradiction to that,

      NZ First to use balance of power to support Labour-led Government: $0.32

      NZ First to use balance of power to support National-led Government $0.24.

      If I were in camp Australia-based Objectivist shill this would have me a little concerned.

      • bad12 18.4.1

        Lolz, OAB, the wet dreamers will be over there as soon as they read your comment to manipulate that one as well…

    • Paul 18.5

      Still here?

  18. Draco T Bastard 19

    Man let off drink driving charge because of career
    But what career do I hear you ask?

    An ex-KGB spy has been let off a drink driving charge because it would limit him travelling overseas.

    Yep, that of consultant to spy agencies. One wonders why, in this digital age, he would have to travel at all – oh, wait, it’s to help ensure that he’s not spied upon by those same spy agencies.

    Thing is, career should never be a reason to discharge a criminal conviction. All we really see when people’s convictions are discharged because of career is rich people being treated differently from everyone else.

    The law should apply equally.

    • McFlock 19.1

      I disagree – the “career” thing is actually a clause that stops a punishment being unduly harsh. Fair enough.

      That having been said, twice the limit is pretty pissed and highly dangerous, so I’d be tending towards “fuck off, you could have killed someone” rather than discharge.

      • Draco T Bastard 19.1.1

        When a truck driver gets pulled up driving drunk he loses his license and his job. There’s no way he’s going to be let off because it’ll ruin his career. This guy’s likely to lose everything whereas the ex-KGB agent would probably still be able to maintain his career and his income although maybe somewhat reduced or he could just get a job at the GCSB. So, what does unduly harsh actually mean?

        • McFlock 19.1.1.1

          theoretically it’s based on the individual circumstances of the case interpreted via precedent.

          I agree, in this case the decision seems … odd, but the principle is sound (and indeed essential). The problem as you point out is the unequal treatment of poor people compared to the rich.

          • Draco T Bastard 19.1.1.1.1

            Yes, the poor are treated differently because they can’t afford lawyers which is a problem but that’s not the problem here – the problem is that it’s an excuse that shouldn’t exist. As Murray Olsen points out it should be applied to every single case as it limits peoples career choices. Essentially, this legal defense means that people should automatically get off criminal charges.

            BTW, there’s plenty of All Blacks that have got off assault for exactly the same reason.

            • McFlock 19.1.1.1.1.1

              I believe that the relevant section is this:

              8 Principles of sentencing or otherwise dealing with offenders

              In sentencing or otherwise dealing with an offender the court—

              (a) must take into account the gravity of the offending in the particular case, including the degree of culpability of the offender; and

              (b) must take into account the seriousness of the type of offence in comparison with other types of offences, as indicated by the maximum penalties prescribed for the offences; and

              (c) must impose the maximum penalty prescribed for the offence if the offending is within the most serious of cases for which that penalty is prescribed, unless circumstances relating to the offender make that inappropriate; and

              (d) must impose a penalty near to the maximum prescribed for the offence if the offending is near to the most serious of cases for which that penalty is prescribed, unless circumstances relating to the offender make that inappropriate; and

              (e) must take into account the general desirability of consistency with appropriate sentencing levels and other means of dealing with offenders in respect of similar offenders committing similar offences in similar circumstances; and

              (f) must take into account any information provided to the court concerning the effect of the offending on the victim; and

              (g) must impose the least restrictive outcome that is appropriate in the circumstances, in accordance with the hierarchy of sentences and orders set out in section 10A; and

              (h) must take into account any particular circumstances of the offender that mean that a sentence or other means of dealing with the offender that would otherwise be appropriate would, in the particular instance, be disproportionately severe; and

              (i) must take into account the offender’s personal, family, whanau, community, and cultural background in imposing a sentence or other means of dealing with the offender with a partly or wholly rehabilitative purpose; and

              (j) must take into account any outcomes of restorative justice processes that have occurred, or that the court is satisfied are likely to occur, in relation to the particular case (including, without limitation, anything referred to in section 10).

              [my boldface]

              I think we both agree that in this case that particular section was interpreted in an overly-lenient manner, probably because the drunk driver wore a suit to work. But should a truckie driving just over the limit on a scooter wearing a batman costume be convicted for drink-driving? I’m not so sure. Twice the legal limit in the truck? Yes.

    • RedBaronCV 19.2

      And what immigration category did he fit into?

    • Murray Olsen 19.3

      I agree. The law should apply equally. A temporarily unemployed person may lose potential career opportunities if convicted, so why shouldn’t an employed person lose real ones?

  19. The Baron 20

    I just love it when you have the gall to lecture another party on gerrymanders, Mike.

    Still forgetting about your pledge card theft in 2005 huh. Convenient.

    He who lives in the glassiest of houses shouldn’t throw too many stones, me thinks.

    [lprent: Off topic. Deliberate diversion. Moved to OpenMike. Repeat that tactic again and I’ll ban you until after the election. You have over-used that tactic in the past (and it is so 2008) ]

  20. Steve (North Shore) 21

    MMP = manipulation by:
    Winston, Sue Bradford, Steve Chadwick, I won’t bother with the rest of List Mps

    [lprent: Off-topic. Looks like a deliberate diversion because it didn’t deal with anything in the post. Repeat if you want to pick up a ban. Moved to OpenMike. ]

  21. lprent 22

    Feels weird not being around a computer all weekend and doing so much driving..

    Spent much of yesterday at Music for Matua at the winery in north-west Auckland. Some late tickets came for TS. So I used them. Pleasant environs. Music worth listening to. Good pinot and bratwurst hot dogs. Liked the limit of 800 tickets and that each ticket was allowed up to 3 kids free (parents/guardian). There were a *lot* of kids there amusing themselves away from the adults (but in view of).

    Reminded me of staff picnics at Wenderholm in the 60s. I might post some pictures for next weekend..

    Today I drove to Rotorua and back on a long holiday weekend (did anyone not take Friday off?). Would only ever do that for family. In this case my mother is in hospital because a wound wasn’t healing – maybe requires a skin graft. She was in fine shape apart from having a drip and dislike of the hospital bed.

    Was avoiding SH27 because of the boats in single lanes coming in from the Tauranga roads. Always jams badly. Slow slow traffic through Cambridge and Huntly on the way back. Avoided Hamilton using State Highway 1B… Otherwise traffic was good. The upgrades Labour put into SH1 past huntly are very effective.

    Not a bad weekend.

  22. Paul 23

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/industries/9701076/Social-media-calls-for-supermarket-boycott

    I say good on Australians for pressurising their supermarkets to support local producers.

    If we had a decent socialist government here we would have the government, not a couple of supermarkets chains, advancing the cause of buy one’s own country’s produce…and a lot more.

    So let’s not just boycott Countdown,,
    What about all foreign owned corporations hauling their obscene profits off shore.
    Start with the Australian Banks
    Then foreign owned insurance companies, chain stores, energy companies….

    A true socialist government would take these national resources back and regain control of the country from foreign financial interests.

    They would then bring Douglas and his crew to trial for treason.

    • srylands 23.1

      What a load of crap. Trade liberalisation is the route to prosperity. There is no alternative. And thankfully we will not be getting a your choice of government.

      • Paul 23.1.1

        zzzzzzzzzzzz

      • Draco T Bastard 23.1.2

        Trade liberalisation is the route to prosperity.

        Nope, all that brings about is a few getting exponentially richer while everyone else gets poorer – exactly as we’ve seen over the last thirty years in NZ and around the world. It also brings about financial meltdown as the GFC proved once again.

        • Paul 23.1.2.1

          Notice the tired old line spewed out ‘there is no alternative.’

          • Draco T Bastard 23.1.2.1.1

            Yep. These RWNJs are getting desperate as the failure and the corruption that their policies engenders becomes more and more obvious as time goes by..

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    Hekia Parata’s latest plan to subject school students to even more testing and assessment won’t do anything to lift the educational achievement of the kids who are struggling, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “New Zealand school students are already… ...
    5 days ago
  • Bad week for NZ economy gets worse
    The bad news for the New Zealand economy got worse this morning with the 8th successive drop in dairy prices at this morning’s global dairy auction, again exposing the absence of any Plan B from the National Government, Labour’s Finance… ...
    5 days ago
  • System failing to protect women and children from family violence
    Last week we called for mandatory child safety investigations in domestic violence cases. This came after the coronial inquiry into the deaths of Bradley and Ellen Livingstone and the verdict in the trial of the west Auckland boys charged with… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    5 days ago
  • Backers banking on social bonds cash?
    The Government is refusing to say what the $29 million it has set aside for its controversial social bonds programme is for, raising suspicions it is an upfront payment to the project backers, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. A… ...
    5 days ago
  • Plastic Free July
    Today is the start of Plastic Free July. Since its inception in Perth, Western Australia four years ago, more and more people and organisations from around the world have joined the call to refuse single use plastic products. Nearly all… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    5 days ago
  • State house sell off Bill gives extraordinary powers
    The Government is about to give Ministers extraordinary powers to take direct personal control of selling state houses, exempting Ministers from normal legal requirements and leaving the sale process wide open for corruption, Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. The… ...
    5 days ago
  • Cash for charter schools, mould for state schools
    At a time when state schools are struggling in old, cold, mouldy buildings and can barely make ends meet, the National Government is shovelling cash at charter schools which aren’t even spending the funding on kids’ education, Labour’s Education spokesperson… ...
    5 days ago
  • New Zealand needs a wise response to climate change
    Today in Parliament I got to hear from a group of New Zealanders who are concerned for the future of our country. Called Wise Response, the group is a broad coalition of academics, engineers, lawyers, artists, sportspeople and others who… ...
    GreensBy Russel Norman MP
    5 days ago
  • No alternative as waste scheme trashed
    Nick Smith must explain how he is going to prevent contamination of New Zealand’s ground and water with liquid and hazardous waste after scrapping the only monitoring scheme and offering no replacement, says Labour’s Environment Spokesperson Megan Woods. “From today,… ...
    5 days ago
  • Flawed system rates death traps as safe
    ACC Minister Nikki Kaye needs to come clean about what really lies behind the reclassification of 18 vehicles in her new motor vehicle registration system introduced today, Labour’s ACC spokesperson Sue Moroney says. "New Zealanders deserve the truth about the… ...
    6 days ago
  • Tiwai Smelter and 800 workers left in limbo
     Workers at Tiwai smelter and the people of Southland have once again been left in limbo over their future in the ongoing debacle over whether the plant stays open, says Labour’s Leader Andrew Little.  “It’s not good enough that after two years of… ...
    6 days ago
  • New twist in state house sell-off saga
    The Government has opened the door to buyers of state houses simply being landlords and not required to provide social services, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. The Prime Minister said at his post-Cabinet press conference buyers would not “have… ...
    6 days ago
  • Government fees will hit charities hard
    National’s decision to ignore the concerns of charities will see the voluntary sector face hundreds of thousands of dollars in new costs if the Policing (Cost Recovery) Amendment Bill passes, says Labour's Community and Voluntary Sector spokesperson Poto Williams. “National’s… ...
    6 days ago
  • Four out of ten for Simon’s Bridges
    The Transport Authority’s decision to fund only four of the 10 bridges promised in National’s shameless Northland by-election bribe is a huge embarrassment for Transport Minister Simon Bridges, Labour’s Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “After one by-election poll showed they… ...
    6 days ago
  • Falling consents adding to Auckland housing woes
    Falling numbers of building consents being issued in Auckland will add to the city’s housing shortfall and fuel skyrocketing house prices, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford “The Productivity Commission found there was a shortfall of around 32,000 houses by the… ...
    6 days ago
  • So Mr English, do you have a plan?
    DIpping confidence about jobs, wages and shrinking exports are highlighting the lack of a plan from the government to diversify the economy and build sustainable growth, Grant Robertson  Labour’s Finance Spokesperson said. " Data released over the last week… ...
    7 days ago
  • Serious risks to tenants and assets in sell-off
    Overseas evidence shows there are serious risks around the Government's plan to sell off state houses to social housing providers, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “In the Netherlands – where community housing providers supply the majority of social housing –… ...
    7 days ago
  • Land of milk and money
    Kiwi families are paying over the top prices for their milk and someone is creaming off big profits, says Labour’s Consumer Affairs spokesperson David Shearer. “In 2011 the Government told us high New Zealand milk prices were a natural result… ...
    1 week ago
  • MoBIE largesse doesn’t stop with TVs and hair-straighteners
    The number of MoBIE staff earning more than $150,000 has risen 23 per cent in just a year, Labour’s Economic Development Spokesperson David Clark says. Documents obtained from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment show there are now nearly… ...
    1 week ago
  • English wants to flog state houses to Aussies
    Bill English’s admission that he would sell hundreds of New Zealand’s state houses to the Australians is the latest lurch in the Government’s stumbling, half-baked housing policy, Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “Bill English should face reality and admit his… ...
    1 week ago
  • Exports continue to fall as Government fails to diversify
    The Government quickly needs a plan to diversify our economy after new figures show that exports are continuing to fall due to the collapse in dairy exports, Labour's Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “Dairy exports fell 28 per cent compared… ...
    1 week ago
  • Government inaction leads to blurring of roles
    The Treasury wouldn’t have had to warn the Reserve Bank to stick to its core functions if the Government had taken prompt and substantial measures to rein in skyrocketing Auckland house prices, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “The problems… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Courthouse closures hitting regions
    The Government’s decision to shut down up to eight regional courthouses, some supposedly only temporarily for seismic reasons, looks unlikely to be reversed, Labour’s Justice spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says.“The move has hit these regions hard, but appears to be a… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • A Victory for Te Tiriti o Waitangi
    This week my partner, who has a number of professions, was doing an archaeological assessment for a District Council. He showed me the new rules around archaeologists which require them to demonstrate “sufficient skill and competency in relation to Māori… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Tough bar set for Ruataniwha dam
     Today’s final decision by the Tukituki Catchment Board of Inquiry is good news for the river and the environment, says Labour’s Water spokesperson Meka Whaitiri. “Setting a strict level of dissolved nitrogen in the catchment’s waters will ensure that the… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Minister for Women and National missing the mark – part two
    The Minister for Women was in front of the select committee yesterday answering questions about her plans for women. Some useful context is that we used to have a Pay and Employment Equity Unit within the then Department of Labour… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Lavish penthouse spend confirms culture of extravagance
    At the same time thousands of New Zealanders are being locked out of the property market, the Government is spending up on a lavish New York penthouse for its diplomats, Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson David Shearer says. News that taxpayers… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Māori Television exodus cause for concern
    The shock departure of yet another leading journalist from the Native Affairs team raises further concern the Board and Chief Executive are dissatisfied with the team’s editorial content, says Labour’s Māori Development spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta. “Annabelle Lee is an experienced… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Million-plus car owners to pay too much ACC
    More than a million car owners will pay higher ACC motor vehicle registration than necessary from July, Labour’s ACC spokesperson Sue Moroney says. “During a select committee hearing this morning it was revealed that car owners would have been charged… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Bill will restore democracy to local councils
    A new Labour Member’s Bill will restore democracy to local authorities and stop amalgamations being forced on councils. Napier MP Stuart Nash’s Local Government Act 2002 (Greater Local Democracy) Bill will be debated by Parliament after being pulled from the… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Minister for Women again misses the mark – part one
    Yesterday I asked the Minister for Women about the government’s poor performance on it’s own target of appointing women to 45% of state board positions. I challenged why she’d put out a media release celebrating progress this year when the… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Banks enter Dragon’s Den in pitch for Government’s mental health experi...
    Overseas banks and their preferred providers were asked to pitch their ideas for bankrolling the Government’s social bonds scheme to a Dragon’s Den-style panel, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. Dragon’s Den was a reality television series where prospective ‘entrepreneurs’… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Global Mode bullying won’t stop people accessing content
    It’s disappointing that strong-arm tactics from powerful media companies have meant Global Mode will not get its day in court. Today a settlement was reached terminating the Global Mode service, developed in New Zealand by ByPass Network Services and used… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes MP
    2 weeks ago
  • More questions – why was the Former National Party President involved wit...
    Today in Parliament Murray  McCully said the reason Michelle Boag was involved in 2011 in the Saudi farm scandal was in her capacity as a member of the New Zealand Middle East Business Council. The problem with that answer is… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Minister must explain Maori TV interference
    Te Ururoa Flavell must explain why he told Maori TV staff all complaints about the CEO must come to him – months before he became the Minister responsible for the broadcaster, Labour’s Broadcasting Spokesperson Clare Curran says. “Sources have told… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • KiwiSaver takes a hammering after the end of kick-start
    National seems hell bent on destroying New Zealand’s saving culture given today’s news that there has been a drop in new enrolments for KiwiSaver, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson.  “New enrolments for the ANZ Investments KiwiSaver scheme have plunged… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Straight answers needed on CYF role
    The Government needs to explain the role that Child, Youth and Family plays in cases where there is evidence that family violence was flagged as a concern, Labour’s Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Arden says. “The fact that CYF is refusing to… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Prime Minister confuses his political interests with NZ’s interest
    The Prime Minister’s statement in Parliament yesterday that a Minister who paid a facilitation payment to unlock a free trade agreement would retain his confidence is an abhorrent development in the Saudi sheep scandal, Opposition leader Andrew Little says.  ...
    2 weeks ago
  • #raisethequota
    Last Saturday was World Refugee Day. I was privileged to spend most of my day with the amazing refugee communities in Auckland. Their stories have been inspiring and reflect the ‘can-do’ Kiwi spirit, even though they come from all different… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Dairy conversions causing more pollution than ever, report shows
    The Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment (PCE) released two reports on freshwater quality and management last Friday. The water quality report shows that dairy conversions are hurting water quality and says that despite great efforts with fencing and planting, large… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Employers want urgent action on health and safety
    Moves by National to water down health and safety reforms have been slammed by employers – the very group the Government claims is pushing for change, says Labour’s spokesperson for Labour Relations Iain Lees-Galloway. “The Employers and Manufacturers’ Association has… ...
    2 weeks ago

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