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Open mike 16/09/2012

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, September 16th, 2012 - 138 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…

138 comments on “Open mike 16/09/2012”

  1. Carol 1

    For many people here, this article does not state new ideas, but is a reminder of the state of the world, and the way forward with the coming global decline.

    http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/growth_is_the_problem_20120910/

    It focuses on two books: Richard Heinberg’s, The End of Growth: Adapting to Our New Economic Reality
    and

    Joseph Tainter’s, “The Collapse of Complex Societies”

    The article lays out the problem from the perspective of those living in the US, in relation to the dysfunctional concept of endless growth. It argues that the solution, or at least the best way to try to deal with the decline, is to organise locally.

    The article particularly blames the major corporates for persisting in dictating the growth meme. For NZ, there is an additional problem that most of these corporates are overseas owned, and a large number have strong links with the US political structure, even if they aren’t actually located within the US.

    The problems we face:

    “The inevitable decline in resources to support societal complexity will generate a centrifugal force,” Heinberg said. “It will break up existing economic and governmental power structures. It will unleash a battle for diminishing resources. This battle will see conflicts erupt between nations and within nations.

    “It could implode in a few weeks, in a few months or maybe in a few years,” Heinberg said, “but unless radical steps are taken to restructure the economy, it will implode. And when it does the financial system will seize up far more dramatically than in 2008. You will go to the bank or the ATM and there will be no money. Food will be scarce and expensive. Unemployment will be rampant. And government services will break down. Living standards will plummet. ‘Austerity’ programs will become more draconian. Economic inequality will widen to create massive gaps between a tiny, oligarchic global elite and the masses.

    Actually, I think it will be a long slow decline, as we gradually shift in the above direction.

    According to the article, the solution (or at least the way to best weather the coming collapse/decline is in local organisation and strong community structures:

    The reconfiguration will arise not through ideologies, but through the necessities of survival forced on the poor and former members of the working and middle class who have joined the poor. This will inevitably create conflicts as decentralization weakens the power of the elites and the corporate state.

    It is important that these structures be set in place before the onset of the crisis, he says. This means starting to “know your neighbors.” It means setting up food banks and farmers’ markets. It means establishing a local currency, carpooling, creating clothing exchanges, establishing cooperative housing, growing gardens, raising chickens and buying local. It is the matrix of neighbors, family and friends, Heinberg says, that will provide “our refuge and our opportunity to build anew.”

    But for NZ there is the additional need for us to continue the pressure on our governments (national and local) to resist the dysfunctional overseas corporates and their colluding governments, and to develop local expertise and sustainable enterprises.

    • Tiger Mountain 1.1

      Society is more fragile than it appears. In the Far North most people have tanks full of nice rain water-yay with a regular rainfall, not so hot in a climate change induced drought or chemical pollution that drifts in from some overseas catastrophe. With just in time systems the Pak’n’Saves etc only have a two day food supply for the region according to Civil Defence.

      For every altruistic neighbour that swaps some veggies for a couple of bottles of home brew and helps home school children say, there will be an armed farmer with fortified defenses and surveillence. We have enough tooled up crazies running around in rural areas now. A guy I know with a small holding on a peninsula out of Whangarei was quite worried by the initial SARS outbreak a while back. He had visions of hordes crossing the mangroves to get his crops, stock and resources, so had petrol storage increased and all sorts of security measures verging on ‘man traps’ installed. He feels a bit of a dick now but that is one anecdote.

      Urban dwellers will get a taste of Christchurch, power out, apartment towers with blocked toilets like some drifting cruise liner. Internet? gone.

      There is a national Civil Defence Earthquake drill on September 26, 9.26 am “Operation Shakeout” http://www.getthru.govt.nz where thousands are being encouraged to join in. Kiwis need to get their heads around this type of thing. But of course it comes back to the shitheads in government who sabotage ETS and all the rest that might buy us more time before a societal breakdown, for short term gain to keep the tills jingling.

      • prism 1.1.1

        Tiger Mountain 1.1
        I feel much sympathy for farmers who feel exposed to thieves. They are sitting ducks for the malevolent remorseless types who want to eat away at their reserves and resources. The policing for farmers is far below what they need and deserve as major producers of food and revenue.

    • just saying 1.2

      Thank you for this Carol, and Tiger Mountain.

      It’s an important summary.

      Like many here, in my own way, I’ve been progressively changing my life to try and meet these challenges, (I draw the line at chickens scratching up the garden).

      They high on my list of priorities when I sold up and moved to where I am now, and I love it here, but for one thing. I’ve found it really difficult to get to know my new neighbours, and even though my various overtures have been characteristically (for me) shy and awkward, I’ve never lived in a neighbourhood with such high walls (physically and metaphorically).

      It’s a classic working -class area in many ways. About 2/3 housing corp tenants, a diverse ethnic mix, loads of young children, and about half of the adults working ridiclously long hours away from the home, with most of everyone else, underemployed or on a benefit. I sometimes joke that half the neighbours keep the other half under surveilance. There is a real tension. I often think that parents who work ten hours a day, and part of the weekend must really resent other parents who get to be with their kids all the time.

      It worries me all the more because local neighbourhoods will inevitably become more and more important in our every day lives. In the past, outward homogeneity helped glue communities together, at the cost of anyone who dared to be different. I’m glad things are different now, but there can be a real challenge where there are diverse communities of people under pressure, getting squeezed more and more, fighting over the crumbs

      • prism 1.2.1

        just saying
        I was involved in trying to gather a beneficiary group together to get strength, cohesion etc from each other. Quite hard because of diversity in life attitudes.

      • prism 1.2.2

        just sayin
        One helpful approach in neighbourhood in Christchurch was that carried out by Sister Pauline O’Regan and others. It was a great example of true Christian work.

        http://www.nzine.co.nz/views/oregan.html?Rcat=Community&Tcat=General

        After teaching for some thirty years she resigned from her position as Principal at Villa Maria College for Girls in 1973 and with other sisters, Sister Teresa O’Connor and Sister Helen Goggin, she moved out of the convent and into a state house in the Christchurch suburb of Aranui

        Books about working in the community
        With Teresa O’Connor Pauline O’Regan has also co-authored two books based on their experiences working in the community. In COMMUNITY Give It A Go! (1989) they describe their work in building community, – how they established networks, started coffee groups, and arranged childcare – and what they learnt about the relationships between local community workers and professional groups..

        And other books are listed. They would be worth reading. Also ideas for community gardens use quite diverse approaches. I heard an Australian or USa person talking about establishing city gardens on public areas which the speaker was very happy about feeling they had been successful.

        That’s a way of bringing people together in a way that will be of benefit. There is a limit to the meetings and talks and planning for fiesta days one can find time for. Practical help like gardens can be so good, and stealing is not too bad. Probably would happen, but would die away over time.

      • Jenny 1.2.3

        … a classic working -class area in many ways. About 2/3 housing corp tenants, a diverse ethnic mix, loads of young children, and about half of the adults working ridiclously long hours away from the home, with most of everyone else, underemployed or on a benefit.

        just saying

        This sounds much like Papakura, the community I live in. I have found that being involved in starting up a community garden has been a great way to break down the high walls, (physical and metaphorical).

        Yes, we have had some vandalism and even a midnight raid on our first potatoe crop, but we have also made valuable contacts with neighbors and community. And along the way are learning many other valuable lessons. It has not been easy but it is still early days.

  2. Paul 2

    With all the news about the Arctic melt being a record this year such as.
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2012/sep/14/arctic-sea-ice-smallest-extent?intcmp=239

    And in this morning’s Herald 32% think “It’s a load of old cobblers’ and a further 19% say climate change has not been caused by humans.

    What an informed population we have. The MSM is doing a great job in distracting them from news.

    • locus 2.1

      almost the same percentage of NZers that support key…. i wonder if there’s a correlation?

    • Carol 2.2

      I can’t find the poll you refer to, Paul.

      I’d like to know if it is one of those dodgy, always-leaning-to-the-right online polls, or a better constructed and conducted one. But, even so, it points to the majority of Kiwis having concerns about climate change… and a government not representing their concerns.

      That a third may be misinformed and a fifth out-right deniers is a worry. However, given the dominance of reactionary voices in our MSM, it must be a worry to right wing spin meisters that there’s a significant percentage who don’t take on board some of their PR.

        • Carol 2.2.1.1

          Thanks. Well, it’s one of those dodgy online polls and which usually lean to the right. There’s about a 50-50 split for human caused climate change and deniers.

          • locus 2.2.1.1.1

            Carol i like your positivity – but i can’t get past the bizarre idea that 50% of educated people either can’t read or comprehend scientific proof that greenhouse gases are creating climate change – I mean 5-10 years ago the jury was still out… but now??

            • Dr Terry 2.2.1.1.1.1

              Let me say again, eduated people are not necessarily intelligent, moral, or discerning. A genius like Gore Vidal, by the way, never went to College (tertiary education). Formal education itself does not necessarily lead to intelligent behaviour.

              • Draco T Bastard

                +1

                IMO, formal education misses the important experience bit. Also, specialisation means that people don’t have an overall understanding of things around them which doesn’t help.

              • Populuxe1

                This would be the same Gore Vidal who was born with a silver spoon in his mouth into America’s patrician class, attended Exeter – a prep school easily the equivalent of many university foundation courses – who remained convinced to the end that the US had somehow tricked Japan into WW2 and turned Truther in his final years, yes?

            • Dr Terry 2.2.1.1.1.2

              Let me say again, eduated people are not necessarily intelligent, moral, or discerning. A genius like Gore Vidal, by the way, never went to College (tertiary education). Formal education itself does not necessarily lead to intelligent behaviour.

              • Colonial Viper

                What you say seems nothing more than a truism yet it has to be stated explicitly because so many (educated) people today appear to not understand it. The irony.

                And a simple corollary – a lot of very smart people, the ones who can get things done and whom you can rely on, have never got a uni degree.

                • Populuxe1

                  And no matter how many times people without degrees repeat this piece of homespun wisdom, it doesn’t make it any more true or relevant.
                  One would hope that one’s lawyer or doctor had a degree if they’re going to “get things done”…

            • Carol 2.2.1.1.1.3

              Well, firstly, those polls are not scientific, and have a tendency to lean to the conservative.

              Secondly, such polls are part of the intensive denier propaganda (and it has increased as the science has got more certain of climate change) – note the wording “load of old cobblers” – who is that appealing to? Those who pride themselves on being down-to-earth? Are generally sceptical of authorities?

              And, thirdly, in spite of intensive propaganda from oil companies etc, a significant proportion of the population do seem to agree that there is a problem of human influenced climate change. So, it means, not time to give up yet…. more people will look at what is happening in the world and are likely to switch to accepting we have a problem that is the result of human impact.

              This means that

        • Draco T Bastard 2.2.1.2

          Three sceptics gave affidavits. One of them is Terry Dunleavy, a retired journalist and stalwart of the wine industry. His family has a vineyard on Waiheke Island and he has an MBE for services to the wine industry.

          And I think that proves just how useless these honours are.

          • Populuxe1 2.2.1.2.1

            I hope that was sarcasm – NZ’s wine industry is worth over $1 billion a year, and gives considerable pleasure to a lot of people. The man deserves canonisation!

    • Bill 2.3

      With Arctic ice so low increasing the chances for a severe winter as polar winds get shunted south, I’m interested in any spin the msm might apply.

      Will we see a repeat of the ‘it’s bloody freezing therefore there ain’t no global warming’, line of the last severe winter there (while they roundly ignored the fact the Arctic as some 11 degrees warmer than usual for the time of year)? Or will they report responsibly?

      With denialist rants noticably more muted of late I’m hoping for sober reporting.

  3. Carol 3

    For xtasy…… this story of tame doctors and assessors is gaining momentum and widening to encompass WINZ, as MPs like Keven Hague keep up the pressure on the government over ACC:

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/7686228/Winz-joins-ACC-in-firing-line-for-hatchet-doctors

    The Government wants to reduce the number of people on a working-age benefit for more than 12 months by 30 per cent within five years, with welfare reforms expected to save $1 billion over four years.

    Winz head Debbie Power said designated doctors were “completely independent”, and made recommendations on the basis of their medical opinion as to whether a person was unfit for work.

    But barrister Frances Joychild was struck by the similarity of allegations about ACC’s assessors to welfare cases she handled. “There are plenty with a reputation as hatchet people.”

    Joychild acted for a client with mental health problems who appealed an assessment from a designated doctor, and she said he received a “brief, inadequate” assessment .

    • Mary 3.1

      Finally they’re cottoning on. Interesting there was no mention, though, of one of the most concerning issues with this which that Work and Income with no medical training contact the doctors after they’ve made assessment just to “check” that the doctor knows about the “correct” eligibility criteria for the benefit. The problem is that, firstly, the doctor doesn’t make the decision about the benefit – the doctor gives a medical opinion only upon which Work and Income then take into account when determining eligibility and, secondly, the non-medical Work and Income person will more often than not not give an incorrect characterisation of the criteria. The result is the same as what was uncovered on 60 minutes with ACC – the doctor goes “oh, I didn’t know that” and changes their mind. In other words Work and Income go hunting until they get the medical assessment they want to base decisions to deny the benefit. And it’s happening not with just sickness and invalid’s benefits but across all medical related benefits, including child disability allowances. It’s been happening for years and it’s disgusting.

    • Vicky32 3.2

      Winz head Debbie Power said designated doctors were “completely independent”, and made recommendations on the basis of their medical opinion as to whether a person was unfit for work.

      Yeah. Right…

  4. Matt McCarten has a good article on the POAL dispute in this morning’s Herald.  He raises the possibility that POAL is dragging this out because in a couple of weeks the collective agreement finally expires and workers go onto individual contracts.

    And something is nagging me.  How much has this dispute cost Auckland ratepayers?

    I tried to find out recently by making the usual request.

    I asked:

    I see that the POAL dispute continues.  Can you advise me if an estimate of the cost of the dispute has been made and if so what this is?  I would also appreciate a figure for the amount spent on legal, PR and consultancy on the dispute.

    The response was:

    The information is confidential.  Can you advise why you require it?

    I responded:

    I would like to see the information because I am fascinated in how much public resource is being used in this attempt to deunionise a site owned beneficially by the people of Auckland.  I also think the information should be publicised.

    Why is the information confidential?  Surely the Auckland Council has received a briefing on how much the dispute has cost?

    Can you advise under LGOIMA:

    1.         Has a report or reports been provided to Auckland Council or any member on the cost of the dispute?
    2.         If so when?
    3.         Was the information presented on a confidential basis?

    I got this back:

    I can advise as follows:

    1.       There are no reports that have been provided to Auckland Council or any member on the cost of the dispute i.e. no information has been provided on the expenditure by POAL arising from the dispute.  However Council is aware of the loss of the Fonterra business and the withdrawal of the Maersk service.  This information was included in media releases issued by POAL. 
    2.       Not applicable.
    3.       Not applicable.

    Rodney Hide must be grinning ear to ear.  His corporatisation of public assets is working out just the way he intended.

    • Tiger Mountain 4.1

      The scabrous Hide slanders previous unionists in this taunting piece that suggests he well knows what is going on at POAL, and why wouldn’t he being a prime architect of the autocratic (to use a polite term) CCOs.
      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/opinion/news/article.cfm?c_id=466&objectid=10834257

      • What did you expect from this anti worker /Union scab Tiger?
        The problem is that a lot of working people believe such propogander.

        I can’t believe some of the things low paid workers I talk to( super market staff ect) believe about unions and Left-Parties /How the hell do we get through to these low paid workers.

    • Carol 4.2

      Excellent work, Micky.

      Doug McKay must also be grinning a lot:

      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/local-government/news/article.cfm?c_id=250&objectid=10834358

      Auckland Council chief executive Doug McKay pocketed $840,000 in the past year, making him one of the best paid public sector bosses in the country.

      • muzza 4.2.1


        The draft report contains several other revelations on council pay packets – 123 staff at council or council-controlled organisations are on $200,000 or more, and 1165 staff members are on $100,000 or above.

        Can’t see the council wide contractors/consultants figure included in the article….


        “I simply can’t imagine what he could have done for the ratepayers of Auckland to be handed a salary hike of that size,” Twyford said. “I don’t know how public sector managers can justify these outrageous rises and salaries.”

        Thats right Phil, those at the top are simply not worth the money they are paid, its ridiculous, and who does DM actually answer to anyway…cos is ain’t elected is he!

        No worries though, the people of Auckland will all shout their approval once the transformtion is complete and the number of job losses waved in front of them…

        Its your fellow man in a job, or your rates bill going up even more, is what it will be sold as..

        Who wants to take a stab at estimating how many years until it happen?

  5. prism 5

    The sort of politicians we are getting don’t seem to be coming from a mature and experienced background. Their decisions provide excessive change to solve problems that would be better dealt with differently. So we go on with chronic difficulties and have the shocks of restructuring all the time that weaken, through their excessive targets, the institutions we rely on. Our politicians are not up to scratch. How do we lift the level?

    I think there needs to be a check list. Questions like what working experience have you had? What do you think about protecting the environment?

    If you have ideas I would like to hear them. Just put prism at the top of your comment and I’ll pick it up that way. Ta.

    I repeat yesterday’s Radionz summary of expert in interview on politicians in Britain and elsewhere. Listen if you can. Illuminating.
    This interview was at 8:15 Aeron Davis (a good, clear speaker with nous)
    Dr Aeron Davis is Professor of Political Communication at Goldsmiths College, University of London. He has investigated communication at Westminster and the London Stock Exchange, and amongst the major political parties and across the trade union movement, interviewing close to 300 high-profile individuals employed in journalism, public relations, politics, business, finance, NGOs and the civil service. Dr Davis is the author of Public Relations Democracy (MUP, 2002), The Mediation of Politics (Routledge, 2007), and Political Communication and Social Theory (Routledge, 2010). He is currently working on a book on the rise of promotional culture.

    • Colonial Viper 5.1

      yeah it’s a pretty sad state of affairs.

    • It’s unfortunate that those “from a mature and experienced background” are probably put off by the antics of question time.

      “How do we lift the level?” Only when List and Electorate candidates are selected from people who can prove they care more about New Zealand than their own egos, having stood the test in their local community, rather than from the ranks of those who choose politics as a full-time profession, having “studied” politics and will do anything to stay in “power”. The issue is motivation, as much as ability.

  6. Lanthanide 6

    Two stories on Banksie today:

    The Sunday Star-Times visited Epsom and questioned 30 people who said they voted Banks at the last election. All said they were now embarrassed to have him as their MP because of his actions over his donation declarations during his bid for Auckland’s mayoralty, and because of his behaviour once they became public.

    Not one offered any support for his position, but all of those spoken to said they were stalwart National supporters who voted Banks to toe the party line and keep Act in Parliament as a coalition partner.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/7686184/Embarrassed-Epsom-won-t-pick-Banks-again

    The party has made no progress in rejuvenating its brand since the election. A quick kill and a neat by-election would maintain Key’s majority. And any loyalties to Banks can be quickly forgotten.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/opinion/7686169/Remember-this-now-Mr-Banks

    • Dr Terry 6.1

      One would expect people residing in Epsom to be intelligent and discerning, but NOT SO. What was patently obvious, they bought hook, line and sinker. Did they really, for one moment, expect the deal to get Banks elected would work wonders? They should not be complaining now because they were so compliant (with Key’s wishes) and naive prior to the election. Embarrassed is the least they should be/.

      • Just because one is rich does not mean one is intelligent DrT . In fact most of the intelligent and interesting people

      • Because one is rich does not mean one is intelligent Dr.T.
        .In fact most of the interesting well informed people I have meet have just been working people many on a low wage. \I had 25 years working in racing stables in UK where horse owners were super rich and had all gone to public (private ) school and had educations I would give an arm for. My close observations were that most were tight miserable ignorant slobs who would sell their grandmother for a couple of bob . They just had the midas touch . they had no idae just how working people lived. Immafraid not much has changed even in Aotearoa

    • QoT 6.2

      Not one offered any support for his position, but all of those spoken to said they were stalwart National supporters who voted Banks to toe the party line and keep Act in Parliament as a coalition partner.

      One hates to sound smug, but oh, poor diddums, sucks to be you. Got played by your own party who didn’t really care who took Epsom as long as it allowed them to pass things that don’t fit with their cuddly image.

    • Draco T Bastard 6.3

      It’s Magic

  7. Herodotus 7

    Q&A Shearer knew what was to be discussed, Key made an idiot of himself, especially re Banks. Yet I walk away from the program thinking Key did less damage than Shearer, how can this be ?
    On reflection I am still not sure what message Labour/Shearer was wanting to promote, let alone that they were able to express it.

    • David H 7.1

      Yep I agree I watched and waited and waited and yeah nothing. Time to go Mr Shearer you just ain’t got what it takes. Now if it had been Cunliffe. Hell even Parker could have done a better job. When Labour lose in 2014 they will only have the ‘insiders’ to blame and a fat lot of good that will do. Shit they say Goff was un prepared at the infamous “show me the money” Shearer is just un prepared full stop. Like I said above. Time to go Mr Shearer.

      • gobsmacked 7.1.1

        Interviewer: “What is 2 + 2?”
        Key: “It’s 5″ (repeats and repeats, but never concedes)

        Interviewer: “Key says 2 + 2 = 5. Do you agree?”
        Shearer: “Well, I think it’s 4, but, well, some people say 5, so …”

        This wasn’t Shearer’s worst performance – he’s done a lot worse. Raymond Millar’s criticism was too harsh. But in an election campaign he would have to do this ten times a day. Interviews, debates, the works. He’d be toast. Shearer can’t change who he is, he’s a decent guy in the wrong job, that’s all there is to it.

        • Tiger Mountain 7.1.1.1

          A better way to run that interview… from a Mana point of view, too far for LP no doubt.

          • National standards-Gone: we support the teacher unions and will be bringing in free meals for kids and a child benefit.
          • Asset Sales–No Way: Not happening, Hydro power is staying in NZ public ownership and what is more all power companies will be renationalised, supply and line remerged into a national grid with fair pricing for consumers, any compensation to have previous profits deducted.
          • Water–Will consult with all Māori over time on the issues till resolved (Shearer almost got that one)
          • Jobs–Scrap WINZ announce UBI (universal basic income) and ‘Hone Heke’ tax, Capital Gains Tax, high earners tax cuts to be reversed, Union rights to be restored: multi employer agreements, scrap 90 day and right of access etc.
          There you go Mr Shearer, done.

          Mr Shearer just doesn’t have the fire or hardline media training. You just repeat the message “I’ve told you Shane, water is not an issue because there Won’t Be Any Sales”, like in a negotiaton you wear the interviewer down, not quite as per Steven Joyce who talks like he eats prozac like tic tacs, but you dominate the interviewer, it is about your answers, the framing not the bloody questions.

          • Socialist Paddy 7.1.1.1.1

            If you want to see how these questions should have been answered have a look at Cunliffe’s recent interview on the Nation. The difference in quality is startling.

            • Tiger Mountain 7.1.1.1.1.1

              Two different formats but your’re not wrong Paddy, would have been interesting to see Cunliffe and Key go head to head on the questions asked of Key on Q & A.

              • Jim Nald

                My brother, who is a staunch National Party voter, says Labour must keep Shearer as their leader at least until 2017.

                • Socialist Paddy

                  Dim post has an article that says “What I learned from that is that Labour is going to have a leadership coup soon. You can’t have Shearer leading the party into a General Election. It’s absurd.”

                  The first comment then is from Matthew Hooton.  He says “I think people are being much to tough on Shearer. I thought he did ok – not brilliant, bit ok.”

                  I think we should stop taking advice from tories. They only want us to lose.

                  • mike e

                    SP MH then at the end of his pure spin said David Shearer can’t even do an TV interview with out mucking it up! forked tongue

                    • fatty

                      How many points does Labour/Greens need to be ahead 6 months before the next election?…I would say 15-20%, because that is how much Shearer will lose in the pre-election debates.
                      Get rid of Shearer soon before its too late. Also get rid of all those people who voted for Shearer, because their stupidity cannot be underestimated.

          • OneTrack 7.1.1.1.2

            How many privately owned businesses will immediately close and move offshore once you start implementing those plans? Will you nationalise those businesses as well? How many people do you think will simply walk away from their jobs since they will all get a universal benefit for doing nothing? That will put even more businesses under and leave the tax base looking pretty limited. Where then will the money come from to pay this benefit. Will you borrow it from China or will you follow the lead of the messiah and start printing money. Well it worked for Mugabe didnt it. We could ALL be millionaires. Bilionaires even.

            That should collapse the exchange rate which will makes the exporters happy – if there are any left. Could be a problem paying for imports but will solve the ,problem of our response to global warming though. We wont be able to afford oil so our emissions will drop to vitually zero.

            The only thing that is unclear is your statement “Water–Will consult with all Māori over time on the issues till resolved ” – Maori have declared that they have full ownership rights. Doesnt look like much room for consultation or much room for “over time”. I think they are saying no consultation is required. Are you just going to negotiate a price – $10 a litre maybe?

            • McFlock 7.1.1.1.2.1

              Amazing how businesses can uproot and leave at the merest whiff of better conditions for workers and bringing tax rates into line with the rest of the world, but export businesses can’t come here or start with equal rapidity if the exchange rate “collapses”.

            • Draco T Bastard 7.1.1.1.2.2

              How many people do you think will simply walk away from their jobs since they will all get a universal benefit for doing nothing?

              Very few as most people don’t want to do nothing. And those bosses that do have people walk away should probably be asking themselves why their workers think that they’re arseholes.

              • Vicky32

                simply walk away from their jobs

                A colleague was talk longingly about Big Wednesday last week, and someone asked him whether he’d be in the next day if he won. “Of course!” he said. When I said I would travel if I won, he then asked “What would you do when you got back? You can’t just do nothing”.
                So, we sat and planned our ideal language school that we would all set up together.

        • Dr Terry 7.1.1.2

          Key too is, as many would have it, “a decent guy” – but these supporters would not agree he is in the “wrong job”! The truth is, of course, that Key is neither a decent guy or in the right job.

    • tc 7.2

      FFS what an amateur and unfocused performance from DS, I could do better. Key should’ve been slam dunked for not reading the police report, which shows Blinky broke the law, the electricity demand side being the real issue with MRP sale delay, ETS freebies to farmers, ECAN….so much material. Who the F is DS media trainer sack them as they’re clearly useless.

      The hollowmen must be happy with this and a third term beckons for the asset strippers unless DS grows a pair, uses the media effectively, or gets rolled for whoever getsv trev’s permission as they could hardly do any worse.

      Nice one Mallard are you happy in the opposition benches bicycle boy because you better get used to them with this shambolic performance from your chosen one.

  8. ianmac 8

    In Q&A today John Key maintained his support for Banks. “I take his word…. There is no need for me to read the Police report. (Note the nose stroking of his nose at the start of this topic, and the hooding of eyes.) It is all a Labour plot.” etc etc.
    It does throw a shadow over Key as well. He may feel that it is better to suffer the condemnation of many than upset the majority of his Government but there is a tarnishing risk.
    Not up yet On Demand.

    • gobsmacked 8.1

      Key’s defence was breathtaking. “Some people … different views …” – even after they showed the clip!

      It makes him look terrible, incredibly arrogant. He’s just relying on the Banks story going away. It’s up to the opposition to make sure it doesn’t.

    • Anne 8.2

      Disappointed in Shearer’s performance on Q&A. He’s making the same mistake as Phil Goff. You can’t prevaricate in politics, and you should never get yourself into a position where you have to explain what you mean. Say it loud. Say it clear. Be concise. Don’t move an inch from your position no matter what the provocation.

      Message to Labour’s strategists:
      Voters want a clear contrast – not a lightweight version of National. How long do we have to wait for the penny to drop!!

      • Colonial Viper 8.2.1

        I think we have to face it Anne, the people running the show in Labour are completely disconnected from the on the ground reality outside of the Wellington belt way, and outside of their inner circle of a few dozen people.

        • Olwyn 8.2.1.1

          And when I look at what they are going to be up against, supposing they do manage to get elected, and do want to do anything differently than National has done, I simply despair. They are going to inherit empty coffers, a welfare system that is at least prepared for privatisation, if not already privatised, a renewed housing bubble and an angry and divided populace. I have no sense whatsoever that Shearer and his backers want to even acknowledge let alone address any of these matters.

          • Dr Terry 8.2.1.1.1

            In which case, Olwyn, give the Greens their chance!

            • Olwyn 8.2.1.1.1.1

              It may well come to that Dr Terry. I do see Labour as my natural political home though, and would love to see something come from them in which I have confidence. I also think we need a wide-ranging and coherent left wing alternative, which the Greens by themselves cannot provide and Labour are presently refusing to provide.

              Labour at the moment seems like a group of people who joined the army to get a career, and now that there’s a war against the people they are supposed to represent, they want to quickly surrender so as to get on with their careers. I do not think that this applies to everyone in the Labour caucus, but to enough of them to make it the prevailing mood.

            • Matthew Whitehead 8.2.1.1.1.2

              Or even Mana or the Alliance if you prefer. It shouldn’t be a case of “green or labour or don’t vote”.

        • tc 8.2.1.2

          Agree CV, and what a disconnected enclave of pollies, consultants, lawyers and beancounters that is. When I pass Duckys office and look around Petone the bloke sure has tunnell vision, if any at all.

          • muzza 8.2.1.2.1

            TC – The word you are looking for is OWNED, they are owned and controlled on both sides.

            People can’t accept it, but its naked in its blatantness now!

          • David H 8.2.1.2.2

            Maybe Ducky needs hundreds of E-mails telling him kits time to resign

        • Anne 8.2.1.3

          The sad thing CV, I have a part time job where I am able to chat with a cross-section of people about life in general and sometimes our conversations touch on politics. Many people out there are fed up with this government and they can see through the likes of Key, Brownlee, Parata, Collins and particularly Paula Bennett. They are appalled at what the government is doing, but not one of them has ever mentioned Labour – or for that matter the Greens – as suitable alternatives.

          This suggests to me that neither Labour nor the Greens are getting through to the populace in sufficient numbers yet to make a real difference. That is why I am so keen to see Labour and the Greens setting themselves a joint strategy for the next election, because neither have a show of being in government without the other. It makes so much sense yet there is no real indication that it is happening. What’s more, it would take some of the pressure off David Shearer because he would be sharing more of the opposition responsibilities with the Greens leadership.

          It was my contention from the start that David Shearer was thrown into the top job with insufficient political experience behind him. It’s easy to knock him for it, but most of us would fare no better if we were in the same position. It seems to me he still lacks confidence and that is a direct result of his lack of experience. What he needs is a top class strategy team around him, and I don’t think he’s got it yet.

          • Colonial Viper 8.2.1.3.1

            It was my contention from the start that David Shearer was thrown into the top job with insufficient political experience behind him.

            Something like 18 or 19 Labour MPs, some of whom were very experienced, voted Shearer in to that top job. They picked him, in their best judgement, as the best choice to lead the Labour Party into the 2014 election.

            Yeah, I don’t get it either.

            • Anne 8.2.1.3.1.1

              IMHO some of them swallowed the ABC hype created by a few long-termers who were either taking out misdirected revenge… or they were more mindful of their own political ambitions than they were the future of the Labour Party.

              Oh well, I guess I’ll make a few enemies in the LP for saying the above but… so what.

              • prism

                Anne
                Maybe it was him or Someone Else they didn’t want. So they vote a fresh face in because no-one of those who were offering could a decisive surge ahead.

          • millsy 8.2.1.3.2

            Labour and the Greens should form a coalition — like the Liberals and the Nationals do in Aus. A single indivisible bloc.

            • Anne 8.2.1.3.2.1

              That should be the long term goal millsy, but not at the expense of a single indivisible bloc. The Greens would want to keep their individual characteristics and so would the Labour Party. Scratch a Labourite though and you will likely find a closet Green supporter underneath. And hopefully the reverse is true too. :)

            • fatty 8.2.1.3.2.2

              I would prefer the opposite and have the Labour Party split. Then there would be a third way centrist party, a real Labour Party, the Greens, and Mana.
              Take the power away from the post ’84 Labour idiots, don’t give them more

              • Draco T Bastard

                After reading this I’m not even sure that Labour going back to its roots will help. If that history is even close to reality then Labour has never been a workers party. It may have been slightly left.

          • Vicky32 8.2.1.3.3

            It was my contention from the start that David Shearer was thrown into the top job with insufficient political experience behind him.

            Agreed! That being said, I think that the Greens can’t be trusted, so a ‘joint strategy’ would be undermined by them.. :(

      • mickysavage 8.2.2

        One thing I would like to know.  Why did TVNZ choose Josie Pagani to be the “left” commentator on the panel?

        • Colonial Viper 8.2.2.1

          Tame, corporate friendly, resource extraction allied, token “lefty”.

        • Te Reo Putake 8.2.2.2

          Because she has media cred, MS. Josie appears on RNZ and Radio Live regularly and her name and reputation has been enhanced by the attacks on her here and on other loony left sites over the last couple of months.
           
          One of the weaknesses of the Standard is that we have no one media friendly associated with the site. Farrar and Slater are on speed dial at the MSM and so are David Slack and Bryce Edwards to an extent, but its unfortunate that the leading leftwing blog does not have a spokesperson to be called apon to go on radio and TV shows.
           
          Mind you, CV would probably give it a go, if asked nicely :)

          • Colonial Viper 8.2.2.2.1

            Because she has media cred, MS.

            You didn’t answer the question WHY. WHY does she have media cred. I’ll tell you. It’s BECAUSE she’s a

            Tame, corporate friendly, resource extraction allied, token “lefty”.

            Also her partner Pagani is very friendly with Right Wing journalists, writers and bloggers.

            Mind you, CV would probably give it a go, if asked nicely

            My chargeout rate for this work is $400/hr + GST + disbursements. Asking nicely does not reduce the rate.

            • Te Reo Putake 8.2.2.2.1.1

              Why? Years of hard work doing her job in the media, the Progessive Party and now as a Labour candidate, I imagine.

              John Pagani? Oooh, that’s sexist, CV, she’s not her husband’s property.

              $400? You need an agent, CV! Let’s do lunch, mmmkay?
               

              • Colonial Viper

                John Pagani? Oooh, that’s sexist, CV, she’s not her husband’s property.

                Don’t be a shit head mate. These two work as a team and share their professional networks to help forward each anothers political and media careers. Have done so for years.

                Why? Years of hard work doing her job in the media, the Progessive Party and now as a Labour candidate, I imagine.

                And don’t forget that she’s also a

                Tame, corporate friendly, resource extraction allied, token “lefty”.

                • weka

                  John Pagani? Oooh, that’s sexist, CV, she’s not her husband’s property.

                  Don’t be a shit head mate. These two work as a team and share their professional networks to help forward each anothers political and media careers. Have done so for years.

                  I think he was referencing Josie herself, who seemed to think that any reference to her husband on TS was sexist.

        • tc 8.2.2.3

          Who pulls TVNZ’z strings Mickey ? SOE minister along with bootboy Joyce I’d suggest.

          More masterful control of the message from the hollowmen.

          • Colonial Viper 8.2.2.3.1

            According to TRP its because Josie Pagani has earnt her stripes as an experienced, progressive media Lefty. Nothing more, nothing less.

        • Herodotus 8.2.2.4

          Better question “Why did not David Shearer give Josie better material to work with”
          National Stds – Labour expelled so much energy in opposing it now there is support of the policy. This should have been Shears moment of glory and a victory, he knew the issues what the questions should have been and how to control the message. Instead we got a very bad Kiwi cricket teams batting collapse.
          Shearer followed Key so had the prime opportunity to leave a lasting telling mark without Key having the ability to defend, instead it was how inferior his performance was to Key.

          On Key link his comments on greater ministers behavior and why he has changed from his standards to now it is “He hasn’t broken the law…there is no charge against him.”
          From this he said in 2008
          “I expect high standards from my ministers,” he said.
          “If they don’t meet the standards I set, then obviously I will take action if necessary
          http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10543474

      • prism 8.2.3

        Anne 8.2
        That’s the trouble with Labour. They are still basking in the glory of old Labour when we had pennys. They haven’t caught up with the new currency, they’re too lightweight to trigger the mechanism where their presence,and their gravitas will be recognised and applauded.

  9. PERHAPS I SHOULD ASK THE (NOT-SO-HONORABLE) JOHN BANKS – MP FOR EPSOM – IF HE WOULD BE PREPARED TO PRESENT MY PETITION?

    “That the House conduct an urgent inquiry into the findings of the Police investigation into the allegations that the Hon. John Archibald Banks, CNZM QSO, submitted a false donation return in respect to the Auckland Council Mayoral election 2010 – that it was not unlawful for the Hon. John Archibald Banks, CNZM QSO to sign and transmit his candidate’s declaration of expenses without first personally checking and verifying that the information provided (by another party) was accurate.”

    Given that he agrees that the law around election donations should be tightened up and all?

    (Given that New Zealand is ‘perceived’ to be ‘the least corrupt country in the world’ according to the 2011 Transparency International ‘Corruption Perception Index’?)

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/political/115686/banks-welcomes-changes-to-'unfair'-donations-law

    Penny Bright
    ‘Anti-corruption campaigner’
    Attendee: 2010 Transparency International Anti-Corruption Conference Bangkok

    http://www.dodgyjohnhasgone.com

    • ianmac 9.1

      “…without first personally checking and verifying that the information provided…”
      I think that his Secretary has since declared that he did read and/or discuss the return before signing.

  10. Poission 10

    Missed QA but RNZ reports

    Mr Key told TVNZ’s Q + A programme on Sunday that driving up debt is not a permanent solution to the country’s woes.

    “The answer for New Zealand is not necessarily coming up with a make-work scheme funded off taxpayers,” he said.

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/political/115935/key-dismisses-suggestions-of-intervention-on-dollar

    Key seems to be missing the point here,ie the TWI (FOREX) is driving the debt up,the argument is both counter-intuitive and not even wrong.

    The TWI anti correlates with exports,with a clear identifiable response eg.

    http://s1250.beta.photobucket.com/user/Poission/media/07f0711e.gif.html?sort=3&o=0

    The decrease in trade returns AKA the balance of payments,which requires more overseas borrowing hence the TWI clearly affects the trade balance.

    http://s1250.beta.photobucket.com/user/Poission/media/a984d297.gif.html?sort=3&o=1

    If the BOP were in surplus this would both decrease the deficit and entrain positive feedback such as productive employment.

  11. prism 12

    Talk on Chris Laidlaw touching on private public prisons. One such project in USA had the company involved demanding a guaranteed 90% occupancy. The worry is that given half a chance these companies will get bigger, there lobbying power also, and any more intelligent ways of dealing with crime will be killed in their infancy by these soulless businesses. A very large crime in itself.

    Also two I think Pennsylvanian judges who were inclined to give long sentences were found to be directors on a prison-connected company!! So PPP’s are corrupting influences from the start and exponentially.

    And another comment this morning was that Anglo-Saxon thinking is much more punitive and judgmental than say the Scandinavians who try from a social responsibility model. There was even the suggestion that the Enlightenment never really reached Britain or the USA. So that’s interesting to ponder on.

    And on punitive ways. Texans are using police and security officers heavily in their schools.
    They have turned truancy into a criminal case and the children land up in Court. One 17 year old talked about being poor and needing to earn, he couldn’t wait till the leaving age of 18. So they fined him. Being poor and then being fined. What a joke of a system. Which is often what we do here. And why force-feed education to 18 that is not seen as worthwhile. They could find out what he would think worthwhile, but the authorities probably don’t think that’s worthwhile. Chant today’s slogan ‘ Education will make you free’. And what jobs will be open to the young when they leave. Step up all who are willing to employ them, and give them apprenticeships!

    • Colonial Viper 12.1

      US prison over crowding. This is what you get when you lock more and more people up for less and less, creating a societal system where they keep coming back in over and over and over again.

      http://kobreguide.com/public/IMGlargephotoPrison.jpg

      Then there is this:

      Former Luzerne County (Pennsylvania) Judge Mark Ciavarella has been spending his time doing odd jobs for a car towing service while awaiting sentencing since being found guilty on felony corruption charges. His car towing days are over, and the 61-year-old judge is heading to federal prison for 28 years — this could amount to a life sentence.

      His sentence brings to closure a dark time in the history of the city of Wilkes-Barre, PA, which is in Luzerne County. He was found guilty in February of racketeering for taking a $1 million kickback from the builder of for-profit prisons for juveniles. Ciavarella who left the bench over two years ago after he and another judge, Michael Conahan, were accused of sentencing youngsters to prisons they had a hand in building. Prosecutors alleged that Conahan, who pleaded guilty last year and is awaiting sentencing, and Ciavarella received kick-backs from the private company that built and maintained the new youth detention facility that replaced the older county-run center.

      http://www.forbes.com/sites/walterpavlo/2011/08/12/pennsylvania-judge-gets-life-sentence-for-prison-kickback-scheme/

  12. prism 13

    CV 12.1
    Spot on. That rounds off completely the passing mention of these two judges that I heard.

  13. joe90 14

    Chris Laidlaw talking to Neil Mitchell about democracies’ teflon leaders and their ability to avoid taking responsibility for the horrors they’re behind.

    Also, Tomgram: Peter Van Buren, Our 9/11 Torturers.

  14. captain hook 15

    Hey CV what right do you have to stop a rugged individual from doing business.
    It is his right to get as much as he can anyway he can.
    Isn’t it?

    • Colonial Viper 15.1

      Question – has he proven himself an enemy of the tribe or of the nation? Is his business thieving from the tribe’s provisions or taking from the wealth and the peoples of the nation? :cool:

  15. prism 16

    Jokey Hen’s latest -
    When we’re competitive when we’re productive we can sell things on the world markets.
    But at present as far as employment goes, apparently they have tried magic and spell out that they’re no good at it so we have to wait for the myriad variables to fall into line and then sell something overseas that we get paid for. That’s something that employs people in towns not just the something that employs a small proportion in the country.

  16. Good article by Paul Little todays Herald .Im just surprised Tory Herald has allowed it to be published, perhaps even they have had enough of this awfull lot.

  17. Good article by Paul Little todays Herald .Im just surprised Tory Herald has allowed it to be published, perhaps even they have had enough of this awfull lot.

  18. Draco T Bastard 19

    Food for thought:

    The consultation process is an embarrassment. Check out this little beauty where we have been asked important questions like what colour we would like the tool to be. https://pact.intuitionhq.com/progress-and-consistency-tool-or-pact BUT do be aware that “if you have a strong aversion to the PaCT tool… leave the feedback to those with a different opinion”. Oh, really?

    It seems that some gnomes are coming up with ways to make education conform to National Standards.

    • ianmac 19.1

      Gulp! Draco. In the U SA they have/had a textbook system whereby Chapter 1 had to be taught on a certain date, tested on a certain date and assessment recorded on a certain date. The classrooms were stacked with such text books but not only in Maths.
      So where do you think this stuff that you linked is coming from? Surely not from an American failed system. Surely not from a country where the ranking of USA has slipped down to below 18th.
      Of course by the time any assessment of its success or failure in NZ can be measured, the perpetrators will have left the Government.
      They are really serious wreckers and haters.

  19. Chris 20

    Just saw a bit of bennett in Parliament having a rant at Labour about something or nothing.Has lost my sound so don’t know what she was saying but just watching her she certainly sees herself as pm material.Jabbing finger,triumphant sneer, glittering eyes of a plus size model,flicking hair flouncing back into her industrially strengthened chair with a God I’m good attitude Sometimes you don’t need sound, she is truly awful. I think when nats do these turns Labour should have score cards and mark them out of ten and hold them up at the end of a rant followed by a thumbs down.

    • Reagan Cline 20.1

      Is she related to Henry ?

    • Carol 20.2

      It was probably a news item about this:

      http://www.3news.co.nz/Benefits-cut-if-you-dont-return-calls/tabid/1607/articleID/269478/Default.aspx?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter

      Beneficiaries who fail to answer three phone calls and a voicemail from Work and Income are being told they’ll have their welfare payments slashed in half.

      The drastic measure forms part of the Government’s crackdown on long-term welfare dependency.

      And this from the MP/s who failed to respond directly to my emails. I got form responses from some staffer saying my comments had been “noted” by the relevant MP/s.

      Is there no end to the Bennett-Key-NAct vicious persecution of beneficiaries? Social obligations? what about the government’s obligation to ensure there are enough jobs before persecuting people unable to get (non-existent) jobs?

      ENOUGH!

      • weka 20.2.1

        If it’s a requirement for UBs to receive phonecalls, WINZ will have pay for phones and voicemail. But of course the ‘policy’ is complete bullshit and not one that WINZ will be able to maintain, or even justify if someone stands up to them on it for legitimate reasons (I don’t have a phone, I don’t have voicemail etc because I can’t afford it). 

        The amount of work involved for WINZ staff to cut a benefit in half, and then a week later disconnect it entirely, sorting the subsequent mess out, and then re-establish the benefit again would be better spent on assisting beneficiaries. 

        This isn’t about getting people ready and available for work. It’s about increasing the systemic dysfunction in WINZ so they can privatise or radically restructure. 

        • Vicky32 20.2.1.1

          If it’s a requirement for UBs to receive phonecalls, WINZ will have pay for phones and voicemail

          When I was working,my  Housing NZ tenancy manager used to make a point of making me miss calls, by refusing to use my work number, only ever calling me at home. I knew this, because my son still lived at home then, and he was a student and then a shift worker, so he’d receive some of these calls. I got into trouble with WINZ as well, because a ‘case manager’ claimed to have phoned me, but we had an answering machine then, and I knew she hadn’t. Later, she admitted that she had phoned once, the phone was engaged and so she’d given up.
          As that’s against policy, and her boss was a reasonable woman, the case manager was in trouble, not me. Thankfully, I now have a mobile and have insisted that HNZ and WINZ people use it!

        • Blue 20.2.1.2

          They won’t fund phones and voicemail any more than they will pay for the increased demand on ECE or create any jobs.

          They require people on the bones of their backsides to be able to afford a phone, voicemail, ECE, doctors fees and the transport to and from etc. or their already puny income will be halved.

          The practical absurdities of their policies are completely lost on them.

          • Draco T Bastard 20.2.1.2.1

            Actually, I doubt that they are. If you can’t afford a phone then you’re easier to cut off the benefit.

          • prism 20.2.1.2.2

            Blue 20 2 1 2
            “The practical absurdities of their policies are completely lost on them.”
            I think that the words “difficulties if not impossibilities” of the policies….would give a more correct summary of the problem. Absurdities has a humorous tone to it and we all agree that there is none to be found in the malevolence of NACT and Polly Benefit, DPB.Grad. cumLoudey or is it LordyLordy!

    • prism 20.3

      Chris 20

      she is truly awful. I think when nats do these turns Labour should have score cards and mark them out of ten and hold them up at the end of a rant followed by a thumbs down.

      Genius!

  20. captain hook 21

    well if some people buy our exports we must be competitive and good at that?
    its a pity kweewee and the rest of the nats never worked at jobs actually making something. they only good for taking the unearned increment.
    i.e. stealing off the legitimate producers.

    • prism 21.1

      captain hook
      What pisses me off is the way that right wing Labour were willing, and NACTs now willing to abandon business that is bringing earnings and providing employment with that airy view that those are old and worn out – we’re on to the new up-market tech industries. Pie in the sky. Don’t give up your day job and other wise sayings.

      Let’s keep present business going if it isn’t outdated. A lot that have gone would still be functional except they have been ringbarked by allowing in cheaper imports with no or tiny tariffs, and also the importing of nasty little organisms that have caused great problems to previously clean and well-run profitable industry.

      Let’s have present work plus build and innovate the tech jobs too. Not likely one developed by our pollies though. They are good at tearing down, or running the family business passed on, giving an established base. And also anything pollies invest in is likely to have to provide a directorship when they leave The House. Don’t leave the house without it their Mum always said. This of course is yer actual quid pro quo.

  21. xtasy 22

    When is NZ getting an OPPOSITION leader!?

    I did by coincidence listen to Radio Live on Saturday evening, where David Shearer was “guest” to Keith Stewart for an hour. NO calls by anyone, and an “interview” raising more questions than giving ANY ideas about what Shearer and “new” Labour supposedly stands for. And that after nearly one year after a lost election! Is this for bloody real? What is this nonsense?

    Shearer was asked re ACC on Radio Live. He evaded every angle of a question, he said, it was not for politicians to judge on whether contracted assessors or doctors make right or wrong decisions. He also was non-committal and had NO answers on how ACC or other clients of government agencies or corporations should best be able to address grievances.

    He repeated the usual taxation proposals by Labour when asked about how to address economic and social issues. He was STRONG on feeding kids in decile 1 to 3, but had not much else to say about education, simply rubbishing national standards and promoting some performance record cards.

    There were only vague comments re the currency, re economic development, and he stuttered or got stuck again and again.

    There was a similarly “poor” performance on Q+A this morning, maybe not quite as bad, but not convincing.

    Now this man comes across as a very “social” and affable man, but he does NOT convince and gain votes, dear readers. Also what the hell are the POLICIES that Labour stands for now, please. The smaller opposition parties may need some guidance.

    Get this changed a.s.a.p., if you would care please, as otherwise we get screwed up again 2014. At present I get more ideas, guidance and leadership from Russel Norman and Winston, at times even feel appealed by Hone Harawira, than by Shearer. This man is a DISASTER!

  22. xtasy 23

    ww.stuff.co.nz/sunday-star-times/latest-edition/7686104/Winz-joins-ACC-in-firing-line-for-hatchet-doctors

    So I want to know, where Labour stand on this one, please, Mr David Shearer!!!

    It was the last Labour led government that brought in Nazi type Principal Health Advisor Dr David Bratt and his willing servants to start scaring the hell out of sick and invalids:

    http://igps.victoria.ac.nz/WelfareWorkingGroup/Downloads/David-Bratt-Benefit-Sunshine.pdf
    http://www.gpcme.co.nz/pdf/2012/Fri_DaVinci_1400_Bratt_Medical%20Certificates%20are%20Clinical%20Instruments%20too%20-%20June%202012.pdf

    http://accforum.org/forums/index.php?/forum/58-acc-asessorscontractors/
    http://accforum.org/forums/index.php?/topic/7309-drs-anthony-djurkovdavid-bratt-peter-jensen/

    http://www.google.co.nz/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=bratt.ppt&source=web&cd=6&cad=rja&ved=0CEMQFjAF&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.rgpn.org.nz%2FNetwork%2Fmedia%2Fdocuments%2FConference2011%2FD-Bratt.ppt&ei=p6ZVUO6kOMbUigf8oIH4Dw&usg=AFQjCNFEdYN_dDW9BAZvZo_cQpC2rFyelg

    Or does it require a jack hammer to get this into the brains of the majority of NZers???

    Many now face a regime beyond reason and justice, and Bennett loves what you put into place before, with designated doctor exams and reviews – them even being “trained” by MSD!

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    Pundit | 30-07
  • Where are Labour’s billboards?
    On Sunday, I drove from Gisborne to Katikati, through Opotiki, Te Puke and Tauranga. Yesterday afternoon/evening, I made the return journey. One thing I noticed is that National Party billboards popped up regularly, mixtures of individual candidates’ billboards (simply stating...
    Occasionally erudite | 30-07
  • “Improving”
    End-of-Year process positive for Novopay, Steven Joyce, 17 January 2014:Minister Responsible for Novopay Steven Joyce says a 100 per cent completion rate for schools involved in the End-of-Year process and an accompanying low error rate are tributes to the hard...
    No Right Turn | 30-07
  • Farmers don’t set out to pollute our rivers
    It can be easy to vilify farmers. But no farmer sets out to create pollution, and the evidence suggests that many farmers are either already acting responsibly or that they are lifting their game. In particular, dairy farmers are acting....
    Gareth’s World | 30-07
  • Guide to economic evaluation part 3: What is agglomeration?
    Debates over major transport investments often get caught up in arguments over benefit-cost ratios, or BCRs. In recent years, projects such as the Transmission Gully and Puhoi to Warkworth motorways and the City Rail Link have been criticised for their...
    Transport Blog | 30-07
  • Where to now for Colin and the Conservatives?
    It’s (almost*) official – there’s no deal for Colin Craig in East Coast Bays. Murray McCully will not be knifed, thrown under a bus or given concrete shoes to go swimming in. Given that Mr Craig had already accepted he...
    Occasionally erudite | 29-07
  • Real men say sorry
    There are a couple of universal truths that all men should be aware of. Firstly, it takes a bigger man to walk away. Of course men can be accused of being weak if they don't confront their problems with violence,...
    The Jackal | 29-07
  • Why my children took part in a playful protest against LEGO’s partner...
    Jessica Edberg is a mother of two. Her daughter, Lily, aged 7, took part in a playful protest yesterday against LEGO's partnership with Shell. 50 kids in total protested by building three giant LEGO Arctic animals outside of Shell's HQ...
    Greenpeace NZ blog | 29-07
  • Race to the Bottom or a Fairer Society?
    In a season when some small parties are indulging in competitive racism it is important to remind ourselves of the great gift of living in our country, a Pacific nation with a Treaty that affirms a peaceful negotiation. The Orewa...
    frogblog | 29-07
  • 3 reasons to vote this election
    Here are three Bills before Parliament that have not passed their third and final vote. The next Parliament will decide if these three Bills become law or not. If you want to have your...
    Tertiary Education Union | 29-07
  • Poll of Polls update – 30 July 2014
    So the latest One News Colmar Brunton poll came out on Sunday. I was up in Tauranga, preparing for a trial, which meant no blogging (plus, it’s remarkably difficult to update a Poll of Polls and then blog about it,...
    Occasionally erudite | 29-07
  • TSB Today: Broken English
    In my post at The Daily Blog today — Broken English, broken government, broken climate — I take a look Bill English’s unguarded comments on climate change. Apparently, it’s a non-issue. As you might expect, I am somewhat less than...
    Hot Topic | 29-07
  • The truth about women
    Marianne Elliott is a former employee of the Human Rights Commission here, and the author of Zen Under Fire, about her time working for human rights in Afghanistan. Here's the remarkable and must-read guest post she has put up about...
    The Hand Mirror | 29-07
  • When the mainstream media go feral: the descent into sheer farce, according...
    . . It had to happen, I guess… The media pack-campaign against Labour Leader David Cunliffe has managed to  plumb new depths of absurdity. On TV3, on 24 July,  TV3/Tova O’Brien ran this report on their 6PM News bulletin, about...
    Frankly Speaking | 29-07
  • When the mainstream media go feral: the descent into sheer farce, according...
    . . It had to happen, I guess… The media pack-campaign against Labour Leader David Cunliffe has managed to  plumb new depths of absurdity. On TV3, on 24 July,  TV3/Tova O’Brien ran this report on their 6PM News bulletin, about...
    Frankly Speaking | 29-07
  • $212 million in spending on roads with few benefits
    A couple of days ago I received a bunch of documents from an OIA request to the NZTA on the $212 million in regional road spending announced recently. I haven’t been able to look at them yet seeing as I’m away however...
    Transport Blog | 29-07
  • State Department cuts through the acid political environment on oceans and ...
    Secretary Kerry hosted a remarkable conference in June called simply Our Ocean. It enlisted international policy makers, scientists, and the private sector to take action to ensure a healthy ocean for the future. The conference laid out the science, impacts, and...
    Skeptical Science | 29-07
  • Vote Choice: Winston Peters – the Conservative
    Vote Choice: Winston Peters – the (well, a) Conservative This week’s featured politician is Winston Peters. According to Peters life begins at conception because…the royal baby (?!). We know this because, again, Bob McCroskie from Family First did the hard work for us...
    ALRANZ | 29-07
  • National Makes Jokes About Domestic Violence, and Now Unemployment
    How far we have fallen in NZ that our current Government spends much of it’s time in Parliament making jokes about domestic violence, and today – unemployment. Key and some of his dishonest thieving Ministers have in the past few...
    An average kiwi | 29-07
  • Guest post at the Standard: Walking through the wrong door is the least of ...
    I have a guest post over at the Standard right now – Walking through the wrong door is the least of Gerry’s problems. Jump over there and read it in full! What we need in Christchurch is more houses, now....
    Rebuilding Christchurch | 29-07
  • Minor Party pre-campaign pontifications
    A look at the tracking polls for small parties helps explain what’s been happening over the last few days (larger interactive version here); The Conservatives are only slightly higher than they were last election suggesting they’ll get 2.6% max. Probably...
    DimPost | 29-07
  • Minor Party pre-campaign pontifications
    A look at the tracking polls for small parties helps explain what’s been happening over the last few days (larger interactive version here); The Conservatives are only slightly higher than they were last election suggesting they’ll get 2.6% max. Probably...
    DimPost | 29-07
  • An abhorrent innovation
    The Rt. Hon. Humphrey Horswell, QSM gives his opinion on the recently-released National Party list...
    Imperator Fish | 29-07
  • Stuart’s 100: #2 Whitcoulls Queen Street
    Urban designer Stuart Houghton has set himself a personal project of coming up with 100 ideas for improving Auckland at the rate of one a day. He is Tweeting them here: @HoughtonSd  Discussing this project with Stuart he said that “I see the city is...
    Transport Blog | 29-07
  • The OIA and the Statutes Amendment Bill
    Back in February the government introduced a Statutes Amendment Bill to make numerous "technical, short, and non-controversial" amendments to legislation. The bill included several amendments to the OIA and LGOIMA which I thought fell into that category. The bill was...
    No Right Turn | 29-07
  • How We Solve The Income Inequality Problem
    click here for some very good ideas from the New Economics Foundation...
    Closing the Gap | 29-07
  • How to make farmers clean up their act
    Order them to stop milking until they've fixed their effluent problems:A Thames farming company has been hit with a $47,000 fine and ordered to stop milking until it fixed the overflowing effluent system at its Kopu farm. The order came...
    No Right Turn | 29-07
  • The Truth About What Keeps People In Poverty From Those Who Live It
    Click here to read this report from the Family 100 Research Project July 2014...
    Closing the Gap | 29-07
  • Eye Candy, Window Dressing and Deep Pockets.
    I came back from six weeks abroad to see the beginning of the Internet Party’s “party party” launches. It leaves me with some questions. It seems that what the Internet Party has done is this. Using Kim Dotcom’s wallet as...
    Kiwipolitico | 29-07
  • Wealth, Income and Inequality in Australia.
    worth a read click here...
    Closing the Gap | 29-07
  • World News Brief, Tuesday July 29
    Top of the AgendaLull in Gaza as Pressure for Cease-Fire Mounts...
    Pundit | 29-07
  • National’s roads are pure pork
    Last month the government announced it would be spending $212 million on regional roads. Every single one of the priority projects (and eight of nine lower priority projects) is in a National-held electorate, which suggested immediately that this was pre-election...
    No Right Turn | 29-07
  • Another fluoridation whopper from Declan Waugh
    Declan Waugh is a self-proclaimed “scientist and fluoride researcher” who seems to spend all his time misrepresenting and distorting  scientific literature and health data to promote his anti-fluoride cause. Waugh has an avid following, among fellow anti-fluoride activists and propagandists. The...
    Open Parachute | 29-07
  • Whyte supremacy
    Emphatically, he says, an ACT party led by Whyte would not go to war on Treaty issues. “I’ve got no interest in Maori-bashing as a political game.” Dr Jamie Whyte back in January when he assumed leadership of ACT.  The...
    DimPost | 29-07
  • Whyte supremacy
    Emphatically, he says, an ACT party led by Whyte would not go to war on Treaty issues. “I’ve got no interest in Maori-bashing as a political game.” Dr Jamie Whyte back in January when he assumed leadership of ACT.  The...
    DimPost | 29-07
  • New Fisk
    It's not just radicalised Islamists - what about foreign fighters who flock to the other side?...
    No Right Turn | 29-07
  • How we should deal with rorting MPs
    Prosecute them for theft:Former parliamentary speaker Peter Slipper tried three times to have criminal charges thrown out of court following claims he misused his travel entitlements during several trips to some of the Canberra region's most prestigious wineries. But three...
    No Right Turn | 29-07
  • July 14 AT Board Meeting
    The Auckland Transport Board is meeting today and as usual I’ve had a look through the papers to see if there is anything interesting. Below is the collection of items or comments that caught my eye. The rest of this...
    Transport Blog | 29-07