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Open mike 18/09/2012

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, September 18th, 2012 - 137 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…

137 comments on “Open mike 18/09/2012”

  1. Pascal's bookie 1

    Here’s something for Labour to bang on about till the next election, commission a local version, and keep on banging on about it till everyone groks it:

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/09/17/tax-cuts-for-the-rich_n_1889686.html

    • Draco T Bastard 1.1

      Ah, reality comes in to bite the neo-liberal economists again but I’m sure that they’ll just continue to ignore it. After all, if they went around acknowledging that their theory didn’t work then they wouldn’t be able to continue to justify capitalism.

      • Neo-Liberalism is only one facet of capitalism.

        • millsy 1.1.1.1

          Quite.

          After the great depression both sides of the political fence agreed to putting the capitalist system in chains so as to serve mankind. About 30 years ago, the chains were unlocked by those who had forgotten what damage it will wreak to society.

          • TheContrarian 1.1.1.1.1

            Indeed.

            Unbridled anarcho-capitalism is a distinct type of capitalism.

            • Pascal's bookie 1.1.1.1.1.1

              Yeah. It sits within the set of capitalisms marked: “Do not actually exist” on the ven diagram of ‘What is capitalism’

            • SpaceMonkey 1.1.1.1.1.2

              Yeah… it doesn’t exist… anarcho-capitalism is an oxymoron.

              • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anarcho-capitalism

                indeed it does exist (though I can’t think of any real world examples – which is a good thing)

                Though neo-liberalism, taken to tit’s logical conclusion, would lead to a system not to dissimilar to Anarcho-capitalism. Prebble once mused that police could be privtised which would fit into a Anarcho-capitalism model

                • lprent

                  though I can’t think of any real world examples – which is a good thing

                  I always thought Somalia was the nearest thing to its inevitable result…

                  Like classical liberalism, and unlike anarcho-pacifism, anarcho-capitalism permits the use of force, as long as it is in the defense of persons or property. The permissible extent of this defensive use of force is an arguable point among anarcho-capitalists. Retributive justice, meaning retaliatory force, is often a component of the contracts imagined for an anarcho-capitalist society. Some believe prisons or indentured servitude would be justifiable institutions to deal with those who violate anarcho-capitalist property relations, while others believe exile or forced restitution are sufficient.[47]

                  The problem is that given those set of characteristics and that there is no institution to constrain violence, then I’d expect it to rapidly do a Somalia…. Warlords and personal fiefdoms.

                  It has been raised here many times as a question for libertarians of various shades. For some reason they seem to avoid answering this as an objection. The nearest that anyone gets to it is postulate something that looks astonishing like “because I said so….”

                  • the rule of law could arbitrarily set in an anarcho-capitalist society based purely on the whims of which ever agency or individual owns the contract for the police force. But then again, another person has no constraint on owning and creating their own security force so, you are quite right, the end result would be rulers of their own fiefdoms.

                    Somalia is a good case study I guess but it doesn’t have the massive corporatism (as far as I am aware) which would result from a Western anarcho-capitalist society. 

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      nah, it’s a load of wank.It’s square circleism, which is why it dosenae exist. Sure, there’s people blathering about what it might look like, but that doesn’t make it exist. FFS, timecube!!

                      What do you need for capitalism? you need defined property rights, enforced by a legal authority. Pretty hard to build that in anarchy, which is the fucking absence of legal authority.

                    • It’s anarcho-Capitalism because it advocates removal of the state.

                      But you know best.

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      have a read of what they say. lots of talk about what sort of things would be ‘justifiable’. Justifiable to whom? is a question that doesn’t get mentioned a lot.

                      That’s not anarchy, it’s minarchy.

                      You could argue that capitalism might be emergent from a state of anarchy, but then you just delay the squaring of the circle. How can you set up the social infrastructure capitalism needs without enforceable property rights? And if you don’t have enforceable property rights how is it capitalism?

                      It’s just silly.

                    • You might find this interesting, PB:
                      http://c4ss.org/content/4043  

                      Only had a quick scan myself as quite busy but will have a longer read later 

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      From a quick read, yeah, s/he seems to get it. Thanks.

                    • mike e

                      Feudalism basically Contrarian

                  • Jokerman

                    anarcho-capitalism IS happening already! (there is a distortion of Gen X values for ya

          • SpaceMonkey 1.1.1.1.2

            I’m not sure they had forgotten at all. They could quite possibly have been saying to themselves… “we’ve got 30 or so years to make a killing out the chaos this will cause before the whole thing implodes.” The financiers make money on rising and falling markets… volatilaty is good.

      • Bill 1.1.2

        DtB. The theory works just fine and as intended. The lies given to us over the reason for applying the theory and its intended consequences are the problem.

        • Colonial Viper 1.1.2.1

          +1

          its like saying that the Americans and the EU are stupid for bailing out the bankers yet again. Haven’t they learnt this strategy doesn’t work?

          When in fact it works very well, for the bankers and their top echelon mates.

    • Bill 1.2

      Says a lot about the ridiculous world of disconnected, politically driven theory we live in when somebody has to do a study to ‘find’ – to all intent and purposes – that ‘hitting your thumb with a hammer’ results in a sore thumb.

      The question is why we allow such crackpot bullshit (repeated hammer + thumb = pleasure) to gain any measure of importance in our lives? And if the answer is because we ‘have no choice’ insofar as all ‘our’ politicians push crackpot b/s, partly or wholly because self promoting corporate, politically motivated media generally embrace such crackpot b/s and denigrate any politician who doesn’t – then what are we to do?

      Any answers?

      • Dr Terry 1.2.1

        Bill, one answer might be for Kiwis to become less self-depreciating in favour of self-assurance and assertion. That is a big ask!!

      • Jokerman 1.2.2

        ontological reductionism.
        levels of discourse
        reduction by levels of discourse
        may lead to epistemological reductionism

      • Jokerman 1.2.3

        ontological reductionism.

        levels of discourse
        reduction by levels of discourse
        may lead to epistemological reduction

      • Jokerman 1.2.4

        Spring Creek mgmt “going through the motions”.-bowel motions upon the Greymouth

        Islamic anti-U.S backlash reaches over 30 countries
        FF?-increased U.S commitment to M.E?

        “let us not Love with words or tongue, but with actions and in truth”

    • David H 1.3

      And it’s taken them how long to figure this out??? 1 person can only spend so much in 1 day where as 100000 spend enough to sustain a small town.

    • felix 1.4

      “Tax cuts for rich linked to income inequality, not income growth”

      In other news, finger cuts for concert pianists linked to more clumsy playing, not less.

    • aerobubble 1.5

      Just did a ‘future lifetime’ costing of rich people’s unpaid fines and charges, its trillions of dollars
      lost to the tax payers. Its a pity because welfare is one of the most cost efficient ways of
      providing for the poorest yet found, lowers cost to disease, ends ghettos, abates crime at
      its beginnings, unlike wealth that sees the richest run off with massive unreturned stolen money.
      The rich even have schemes, Ponsi schemes,… if only we were to stop the rich starting
      finance companies….

      …or are we to expect a percentage of people in whatever walk of life to fall through the
      gaps, and so a lifetime costing of some benefitaries is essential moronic, worse
      discriminatory, since those entitled to welfare aren’t criminal financial fraudsters.

  2. Logie97 2

    KidsCan and feeding the masses.
    From what we saw on Campbell Live last night, the “food” provided was lunch-box fillers. Doughy, bland snack bars, tiny raisin packets and catering size tins of baked beans and a small tub of peaches in syrup and some loaves of bread. Yes, some schools are getting (One-piece-of-fresh-fruit-one-day-a-week) – that is not a daily ration either. Yet Key and Co are being let off the hook here by this really well meaning organisation – being frequently quoted on programmes like Q+A as the answer – they are a start, yes, but not the answer.

    • Bored 2.1

      I semi watched Campbell whilst on the phone: what really pissed me off was the comments from viewers at the end, three of five said words to the effect that the parents were to blame (read it has nothing to do with money). It would seem to me that we have a very nasty attitude as a society to those less well off than ourselves, “kill the poor” seems to be the default setting for “middle NZ”. No wonder Key gets elected.

      • muzza 2.1.1

        Its the inevitable result of a broken down divided society, who has been told at an individual level, its all about you. Worst of all. people who are inclined to feel its actually all about them, also think they understand what is happening in the world, ou know they watch CNN, SKY News etc, which creates a disconnect inside them, that the poor, and those in poverty, is largely a choice they have made, its all their fault for being poor and impoverished.

        What these people fail to appreciate is that this has been designed, like the financial system, it cant currently be any other way, but because people are so stupid/selfish, they don’t realise that they too are set to become the poor and impoverished, somewhere along the timeline.

        Perhaps if people could get this through their thick heads, they may start to understand their views are going to become a self fulfilling prophecy they will not have seen coming.

        When our fellow human beings lose, we all lose!

        • Bored 2.1.1.1

          Thanks Muz, I will put the positive side back on. Occasionally I get a very dark attitude with my fellow humans, which sort of clashes with my preferred modus operandi of doing something about it for other humans. And If the glum thing overcomes me I will take sly pleasure in the discomfort of newly impoverished “aspirants”.

      • Kotahi Tāne Huna 2.1.2

        Where there is greater inequality, more people will be deprived of the jobs, incomes, housing and cars which are the markers of status. Vulnerable to the humiliation of
        relative poverty, they will be particularly sensitive to feeling disrespected and looked
        down on and unwilling to ignore incidents which appear to involve a loss of face…

        “It’s just gettin’ worse an’ worse round here. Rotherham’s just dog
        rough now, it’s fuckin’ dog rough man. All you get…is people eyein’ yer all
        time and a lot of ‘em aren’t hard at all, ‘cos hard doesn’t have to bother.
        …who wants to live with every time yer go out of the door some fucker’s
        lookin’ at yer? There’s this bloke on our street…, parks his (car) there and he
        eyes me out all time. One of these days his goin’ t’ catch me in a bad mood
        and I’m gunna …ask him what his problem is. … There’s something wrong
        with ‘em, they’re not right in the head. There’s just more and more fuckin’
        weirdo’s about. You’ve got to keep yourself fit an’ strong, and you’ve fuckin’
        got to be able to fight because more an’ more now it’s comin’ down to that
        ‘cos it’s the only thing these wankers respect. I mean if they know yer ‘andy
        and they know you’ve got hard friends – (John’s) popular just cos he’s
        fuckin’ hard, he’s respected and it’s all there is for us now. They walk past yer
        and they stare at yer and first to look away is the weaker one and once they
        see you as weak, then you’re a target to ‘em. Unless they know you’ve got
        heavy friends. … It’s fuckin’ rough.”

        Wilkinson R. Why is violence more common where inequality is greater? Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences 2004;1036:1-12

        Bored, I think we are witnessing a symptom rather than a cause.

      • Mary 2.1.3

        Why isn’t anyone pointing out that this “food in low decile schools because low income families don’t have enough money to feed their children” caper is just one more banana skin on the big slippery reversion to Poor Law thinking? Nobody wants to see hungry kids at school, but we can’t let this get in the way of what this means in the bigger scheme of things. We’ve already accepted food banks as a legitimate part of our formal welfare system – government refers people to food banks for God’s sake, and who would’ve predicted that back in 1991? We’ve also got Whanau Ora – sounds great because it’s supposedly about giving power back to Maori and who can say that’s a bad thing? Won’t be long though when we hear Key and Bennett saying it’s such a success that we’re handing welfare over to the community to deal with because “they’re so good at it”. They’ve all but done it with our young people. The Left are playing right into the hands of the greedy money fiends by letting us slip slowly but surely back into the deserving/undeserving mire which our current welfare system was designed to get us out of. It’s not hard to see what Key/English/Joyce/Bennett et al are doing and why they want this to happen.

        • weka 2.1.3.1

           We’ve also got Whanau Ora – sounds great because it’s supposedly about giving power back to Maori and who can say that’s a bad thing? Won’t be long though when we hear Key and Bennett saying it’s such a success that we’re handing welfare over to the community to deal with because “they’re so good at it”.

          Problem is, Maori are better off running their own welfare, simply because the mainstream is so crap at it. 

          • Jokerman 2.1.3.1.1

            Maori are better at serving the social needs of their communities, if funded appropriately.
            Hear thru the kumara vine that funding discrimination is occuring at the DHB board level regretably
            centralisation of contracts etc

          • millsy 2.1.3.1.2

            No real issue with Whanau Ora as long as it isnt used to replace the current welfare system, though it seems to me, from the series that was running in the herald some weeks ago, it appeared that tribal groups were using it to dicate to members how they should live their lives. One woman was told to give up her phone/internet service, even though it would be a false economy.

      • Pete 2.1.4

        It would seem to me that we have a very nasty attitude as a society to those less well off than ourselves, “kill the poor” seems to be the default setting for “middle NZ”. No wonder Key gets elected.

        I think Chris Trotter was right on the Union Report this week. There really is a nasty streak of authoritarianism in this country.

        We’ve never really had to fight for our freedoms (yes, I know the World Wars, but we were never directly imperilled), they were just developed as this country progressed. We imagine ourselves as a caring society, but that is just part of the national myth.

      • millsy 2.1.5

        The ultamite irony is that those people you mentioned will have benefited from Labour’s 1935-84 welfare/social security state. From free school milk to Housing Corp loans and everything in between.

        • aerobubble 2.1.5.1

          Its pretty simple, when the powerful get arrogant they ignore their duties and start
          blaming the great unwashed. Welfare is the most efficient way to save trillions in
          costs on the people, from disease, to poor housing, to poor nutrient, to ghettos,
          to having a healthy skilled workforce. Essentially National aren’t about to attack
          everyone, remove all business and in work welfare, they are only going to remove
          all support from a very few, those most likely to be ignored by the system.
          Its just nasty and despicable, and yes you guessed it, cost more in the long run.
          In more crime, more disease, more run down housing, more social disruption.

      • David H 2.1.6

        Bored 2.1

        Yep go and read some of the comments on the program. I had to recheck that I was still living in NZ. I tell you it’s scarey the way this is going, it’s standard Nact practice divide and conquer, but this time we are all wired up to the web, and the war is in here!

        I think that more and more people are getting fed up with the party line bullshit, and are looking for something different, I can’t say that whats written in here is true, it’s not, it’s opinion, it’s the opinion of a broad spectrum of people and in here apart from the trolls we are all equal (well moderators above equal) and no laughs at what you say. Unless it’s complete troll or stupid talk then the above equal part comes in. And the fact that the name of the Standard and other blogs have been mentioned in the MSM (thanks Bryce and Gordon) people have to come and look (I could be talking out of my ass here But Lprent are the visits by new people up and new members up as well?) If they aren’t then lets hope for more media coverage and a member to win Lotto to help fund. There are some very knowledgeable people in here from all walks of life. Unfortunately until we get more readers their voice is lost in the babble of MSM drivel.

        What I am trying to get at is this unless we adapt to the way things are happening on the net, in the Blogs, the MSM and to the way the Nats are using the net we will lose and keep losing. They have the joyous intelligence of The Whale, and of course their tame troll Farrar. And of course Hooten, king of the shout down what ever he is.

        You can see it in the coverage of the ABC fight, Half of the insider leak I suspect was probably from the fantasy of Whale and his boyfriend Duncan. The response was immediate and in some cases way over the top and it keeps happening. And we get bad press the Rabid left blog shit from the likes of JA on the Herald and the same on Stuff.

        We have Paula Benefit stripping away our rights, Widows will lose about $8.30 a week, if you miss 3 calls benefit slashed, turn down a job, benefit slashed, fail a drug test? Yep Again benefit slashed. And I really don’t have the energy or knowlege to go into what Parata is doing to education I need to learn. I am shocked at the bullshit coming from Brownlee in CHCH. Then there’s that happy Joyce creator of the latest white whale MOBIE so that makes him Capt Ahab and we all know how that ended.

        And it keeps happening. And why does it keep happening ? Because there is bugger all opposition to the plans of the Natcs, they get away with lying, cheating, bullying, etc and still they are not taken to task

        Why NOT?

        There needs to be change major change in the Labour party they need to get back the people who at the moment know that NO ONE gives a shit about them. They are the forgotten kids of 16 and 17 they are the next generation of voters, but if they see the shit that Key pulls, and gets away with, ALL the fucking time, no wonder they just don’t bother. The infighting in the Labour Party must stop it has to. it is diverting attention away from what is important, but what is important to the LP at the moment ? It seems that power rather than their constituents is the important thing. They forget we voted them in. DID they not get the message that was sent at the last election? it seems not. They need a complete clean out a democratically elected leader Get the cronies out of the picture, (this ME politics is bullshit.) how many more seats do they have to lose (hopefully to the greens BUT I fear not) to finally get the message?

        Wow sorry i needed to clear my thoughts and a sleepless night don’t help. go ahead and pick it apart I look forward to any and all criticism. Oh and please DNFTT.

      • Dr Terry 2.1.7

        Bored, I think you are on to something here.

      • AAMC 2.1.8

        On a more positive note, here are some creative young people trying to build some momentum to do something about it..

        #FeedOurFuture
        https://www.facebook.com/FeedingOurFuture

        Lets pick up some shovels and as an act of civil disobedience, turn up at every low decile school and plant fruit trees in their grounds, as a symbol of the community wanting to feed it’s children.

        • muzza 2.1.8.1

          I would say the civil disobedience is NOT taking action to assist where it is obviously needed!

          Well said AAMC

          • Logie97 2.1.8.1.1

            Several schools ran Enviroschools vegetable gardens with the assistance of grants, and Professor Delorus Umbridge of the 2009/2011 National Government scrapped the funding, but was forced to reinstate it partially because of public outcry.
            Other schools are planting areas of the ground in orchard through grants from their local councils. It will take a good 5 years plus for these trees to start producing sufficiently though … what happens in the meantime?
            Well for one, hopefully Bill Scrooge and Joky Hen and their mean administration will be history.

  3. There is an interesting article in this morning’s Herald discussing a JB Were report which raises concerns about NZ’s financial system and suggests that the Reserve Bank should be taking an active role in suppressing the value of the kiwi dollar.

    Researcher Bernard Doyle is quoted as saying “[t]he RBNZ is one of the few central banks running relatively orthodox monetary policy” and that it was a “rarity in the global economy,” with positive interest rates and no policy to print money. “Unfortunately, in a world where the major central banks are breaking all the rules, this is not an advantage,” he is quoted as saying.

    With the US, Europe and the UK printing dollars and providing cheap credit the NZ dollar will inevitably continue to increase in value as Asian banks seek out the highest interest rates.  So the export sector is in for another clobbering.

    And the Government’s response?  Do nothing and leave it to the market.  The only problem is that there is clearly not a free market operating.  

    Key naturally said that concerns about the financial system were “nonsense”.

    Oh for a government that actually thought it should try and achieve some good … 

    • prism 3.1

      ms
      Thanks for bringing that to us. Most illuminating.

    • Draco T Bastard 3.2

      Key naturally said that concerns about the financial system were “nonsense”.

      Him and his rich mates are doing well out of it so it must be good and if other people aren’t doing well out of it, well, that’s their choice.

    • muzza 3.3

      Are they short on the Kiwi $$ then….Or perhaps telling their clients they should be.

      Whatever the case, when a mob like JB Were publish a report, there is good reason for it, and its not altruistic!

  4. King Kong 4

    I see it is the first anniversary of the occupy movement. So how did that storming of the Bastille, that many here were sharpening their pitchforks for, pan out? snigger.

    • Urban Rascal 4.1

      CHANGE OF FOCUS: The Occupy movement has influenced the national dialogue about economic equality, with the word “occupy” itself becoming part of the public lexicon.

      VARIED IMPACT: The protest movement is credited with a range of more concrete accomplishments, from influencing New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s about-face on a millionaire’s tax to helping to save an Atlanta church and veterans’ homes from foreclosure in Atlanta and Minneapolis. In Rhode Island, Occupy Providence won a temporary day center to serve the homeless during the winter.

      http://news.yahoo.com/summary-box-occupy-achieved-6-months-174602618.html

      Small achievements are still achievements, and Occupy has taught societies a lot and connected struggling classes around the world. Connecting struggling classes worldwide is a pretty massive change in global discourse. The fact that your even scoffing at it while probably watching spanish mining strikes, a French socialist president and the Arab fall on the the tele news, all which are connected to the change in discourse, shows how clueless you are to the flow on effects of a connected global movement.

      Maybe the PoAL with make it a bit more relative to NZ for you monkey breath.

    • mike e 4.3

      they’ve taken a leaf out of your book and are going to climb the empire’s state building and get shot to pieces like your arguments do most days here primitive primate!

    • prism 4.4

      King Kong They just did that to amuse you oh reader of philosophy.

    • Dr Terry 4.5

      The article, KK, reports that the occupy movement remains intact and in good heart in the USA, for starters.

  5. ‘Dodgy’ John Banks protected by ‘shonky’ John Key?

    The (NOT-SO) ‘HONORABLE’ John Banks – showing all the class of a rat with a gold tooth?

    http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=449542975077413&set=a.449542061744171.101311.100000651420214&type=1&comment_id=1279393

    Penny Bright

    ‘Anti-corruption campaigner’

    http://www.dodgyjohnhasgone.com

  6. prism 6

    Heard a quote from Jay Leno -
    “Politics is show business for ugly people”.

  7. David H 7

    Watching Key on TV3 this morning and when asked about Tainui not coming to a Hui on Water? With a shrug of his shoulders, “It’s a free world” What a bullshit answer. That’s the sort of answer you give if you just don’t care about the question, or what the out come could be, It just shows what a culturally insensitive pig he can be. And he is just going to bulldoze these thefts through at any cost and to hell with the consequences. And the bribed and blind middle class are going to hand it to him on a plate, and the rest of us will pay for it for ever.

  8. I found this really nice map of what they expect to be able to extract from Afghanistan.
    About a trillion dollars worth it seems

    • mike e 8.1

      you didn’t include the opium or marijuana and Carlyle Haliburton and blackwater(now has a new name).
      The US war machine has already made $1.4 trillion Dollars out of Afghanistan!

    • Colonial Viper 8.2

      What century is it going to be before they can get a stable enough security situation to set up any mining operations of scale?

      • insider 8.2.1

        Mining and trading has been going on in Afghanistan for about 6000 years. The current events are just a blip.

    • Bill 8.3

      Sheesh, trav. That map misses the return on the US$7.8 b investment in the TAPI pipeline…of which NZ is a part funder.

    • ianmac 8.4

      Remember the proposed oil pipeline to shift oil from the north of Afghanistan to the Pakistan borders. Was it the real reason for USA getting into Afghanistan?

      • insider 8.4.1

        no-one remembers it because it was a myth or literally a pipe dream with no prospect of success.

      • Bill 8.4.2

        The Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India pipeline (TAPI) just got signed off the other week. It’s a gas pipeline. Not oil. It was first proposed back in the mid-nineties and the NYT reported at the time on how it was a wonderful idea insofar as it sidelined Iran and Russia.

        But the Taliban never controlled the north of Afghanistan and so could never have guaranteed its safety, hence, perhaps the massacre at Mazar e Sharif in 1998 was, at least in part, a clumsy attempt by them to secure control of the vital NW region?

        Pre 2001 the Taliban had attempted to give over Osama bin Ladin on a number of occasions. But the US were never exactly helpful in securing his extradition to a third country.

        By late 2001, the only pre-text that would have allowed the US to invade was if the state of Afghanistan could be tied to the terrorism of Sept 01. (To invoke Article 51 of the UN Charter) And so we are sold the story of the Taliban being in cahoots with Al qaeda and therefore responsible for the twin towers etc.

        And the Taliban tried to give up Osama bin Ladin again. And again the US were less than helpful.

        If you look at the proposed route of the TAPI pipeline and the position of major bases (which can will remain operational under either a residual US led force backed by mercaneries or by mercanaries on their own – there are already thousands employed in Afghanistan), there is a rather obvious correlation…SW Afghanistan running up to Turkmenistan.

        btw. India finally signed on to the TAPI project (welching on an agreement with Iran for a different pipeline) because they got nuclear technology from the US. And the only reason they got nuclear technology from the US was because P Goff gave up NZ’s veto on the matter.

        • Clashman 8.4.2.1

          After 9/11 the Taliban agreed to give Osama up if the US provided some evidence that he was involved/responsible for the attacks. The US wouldn’t/couldn’t.
          Its also interesting that the FBI’s most wanted page for Osama bin Laden never included any apportion of blame for 9/11
          “The FBI page states: “Usama Bin Laden is wanted in connection with the August 7, 1998, bombings of the United States Embassies in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, and Nairobi, Kenya. These attacks killed over 200 people. In addition, Bin Laden is a suspect in other terrorist attacks throughout the world.”

          When asked why there is no mention of 9/11 on the FBI’s web page, Rex Tomb, the FBI’s Chief of Investigative Publicity, is reported to have said, “The reason why 9/11 is not mentioned on Usama Bin Laden’s Most Wanted page is because the FBI has no hard evidence connecting Bin Laden to 9/11.”
          http://www.twf.org/News/Y2006/0608-BinLaden.html

          • Bill 8.4.2.1.1

            Before 9/11 the Taliban had Osama on trial for the Tanzania and Kenya bombings. But they had no evidence and so asked the US to supply what evidence they held for the prosecution. The US had already sent them a few cruise missiles and in response to a request for evidence sent a taped ’60 Minutes’ TV interview and a copy of some published magazine article. And so, the Taliban let him go.

            And there are other, on record, instances of the Taliban in discussion with the US seeking to be rid of Osama. (The US didn’t recognise the Taliban as the government of Afghanistan so there was no extradition treaty) All they wanted was some…any…pretext from the US and they would have handed him over to Saudi Arabia. But when you read the record, it appears the US wanted Osama to be just where he was.

            Pre 2001, the Talban even tried to extradite him to Saudi Arabia becasue he had broken a religious edict to not speak of terrorist events. And the Saudi’s refused to ‘play ball’.

            • Colonial Viper 8.4.2.1.1.1

              And don’t forget that Osama Bin Laden came from a very wealthy Saudi Arabian family with extensive oil and other business contacts in the US.

    • insider 8.5

      I’ve heard of wars for oil, but wars for copper and iron? Give me a break. That kind of idea is just so BC.

      • mike e 8.5.1

        what about lithium

        • insider 8.5.1.1

          Well half the world’s lithium is in Bolivia. If it is anything like as large the price will likely drop. but it’s all unproven. And it’s hardly a rare metal and war engendering

          • Colonial Viper 8.5.1.1.1

            Afghan mineral resources are worth a lot of money, sure. But that’s just icing on the cake.

            The main course are the pipeline routes for oil and gas, allowing the volatile Persian/Middle East area to be completely avoided. That’s where the real strategic driver is. The ability to bypass the Straits of Hormuz and to bypass Russia is absolute magic.

    • joe90 8.6

      I’ve heard of wars for oil, but wars for copper and iron?

      West Papua.

      • McFlock 8.6.1

        Bougainville.

        • mike e 8.6.1.1

          Chile

        • insider 8.6.1.2

          post colonial nationalism v self determination. Neither of these are about copper.

          • McFlock 8.6.1.2.1

            In the same way that Western African wars had nothing to do with diamonds.
                   
            Hypothetically (of course) I would be interested to see how much of a flying fuck PG would have given if the Panguna mine didn’t exist. Or indeed how much of a grievance the locals would have had if the’d received more than 1% of the mine profits (another 19% to PNG govt). 
                
            Many/most wars are, at the root, about money. You just need a bit more copper to get the same conflict intensity than you do oil or gold.
             

      • joe90 8.6.2

        Neither of these are about copper

        Bullshit, while Freeport McMoRan continues to pay Jakarta it’s all about copper.

  9. Jackal 9

    Public subsidizing polluting industries

    National’s Climate Change Response (Emissions Trading and Other Matters) Amendment Bill (PDF) effectively kneecaps the ETS and ensures that New Zealand will fail to meet its international obligations. Giving the public only two weeks to make submissions on that bill, the amendments to the Climate Change Response Act 2002 puts a very flimsy case for economic growth ahead of the environment… In other words it lets the polluters off the hook…

  10. millsy 10

    With those who serve, the government is giving with one hand and taking with the other

    Market rentals for base housing, coupled with the dirty little secret of NZDF housing getting sold off and taken apart bit by bit, which will eat up the 7% payrise that all NZDF personell are getting.

    Is there any reason why soldiers cannot form a union?

    Those who see the forces as a possible respite from transience, insecurity and poverty should really think again…

  11. Colonial Viper 11

    Decimation of a formerly secure US middle class community

    “A culture that does not grasp the vital interplay between morality and power, which mistakes management techniques for wisdom, and fails to understand that the measure of a civilization is its compassion, not its speed or ability to consume, condemns itself to death.” – Chris Hedges

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/guest-post-are-you-seeing-what-im-seeing

    • Dr Terry 11.1

      CV, take credit for this excellent and true quotation.

    • Dr Terry 11.2

      CV, take credit for this excellent and true quotation..

    • Draco T Bastard 11.3

      Pablo over at Kiwipolitico has a good article about the infeasibility of the US service economy.

      The basic problem of reliance on services as the core of economic activity is that making money through facilitation is not equivalent to being productive. Nor is working hard synonymous with productivity. Americans work the longest hours and take the shortest vacations of all OECD countries. By that standard they should be light-years ahead of the democratic capitalist world in terms of real productivity. But they are not. That is because hard work and income earned in services does not, in the larger scheme of things, add real value to productivity. It may make the national quality of life better, but it does not advance the overall condition of the productive apparatus. It is the economic equivalent of silver–it is nice and attractive, very malleable, easy to buy, wear and replace, but is no substitute for the economic iron required to build and progress a nation.

      And we’re following the same path to economic stagnation and collapse.

      • Jokerman 11.3.1

        i rememeber when the ‘services economy’ was the current propaganda in Aoteoroa; Yawn and despair. More of the sl word (for those that do not Think like moi)

  12. ianmac 12

    A bit ironic that the Topless Princess Kate and husband should be welcomed by traditionally garbed women in the Solomon Islads who were – umm – topless. We are a weird lot aren’t we?

    • prism 12.1

      ianmac 12
      it’s all down to culture, fashion and societal norms – that get to be tourniquets on us

  13. The Onion is running a story (obviously satire) that Obama’s popularity has spiked after he punched a Wall Street Banker in the face.  Makes you wonder though …

  14. MEDIA ADVISORY:

    Photo of a banner that will be outside John Banks electorate office
    27 Gillies Ave Newmarket between 12.30 and 1.30pm
    TODAY Tuesday 18 September 2012

    http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=449542975077413&set=a.4495

    The purpose of this protest is to hand over a letter to John Banks c/- his electorate staff, to ask whether he would be prepared to be the MP to present the following petition to the House (given that he is purportedly so concerned about the slackness of local government electoral law?

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

    Mr Banks says the changes are well overdue.
    “As Charles Dickens said in 1838 the law is an ass – and it’s important that the Government cleans it up. No candidate for public office should go through what I had to go through.”

    In order to prevent this happening to any other candidate – I look forward to The ‘Honorable’ John Banks, MP for Epsom, agreeing to present this petition, at his earliest available opportunity.

    “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.”

    (It is noteworthy that the first signature on this petition is that of Kim Dotcom.)

    (Photocopies of this petition will be available for media.)

    Actually getting this request to staff at John Banks’ electorate office is somewhat complicated owing to the fact that I have been trespassed from it for 2 years arising from my being arrested in it, on 18 June 2012.

    Perhaps the Police will be able to help expedite proceedings?

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/auckland/local-news/7124255/Protesters-stage-sit-in-at-Banks-office

    (Have appearance in Ak District Court (Albert St) tomorrow Wed 19 September 2012 – matter will be adjourned – but will still have a protest outside
    Court from 8.30am – 9am.)

    CRI- 2012 – 004 – 113 21

    CHARGE: Wilful trespass

    Courtroom 11

    TIME: 9.00am

    Penny Bright
    ‘Anti-corruption campaigner’

    http://www.dodgyjohnhasgone.com

    • ianmac 15.1

      Perhaps Mother Jones would sit in on Key’s discussion to his inner circle. Scary stuff Joe.

    • joe90 15.2

      Esquire: The Worst Thing Romney Has Said About Americans Yet

      To this moment, I guarantee you, Romney is probably astonished at what all the fuss is about. This is simply the way the world is. There is himself, Willard Romney, and his perfect family, and his perfect life, and there is The Help, and The Help gets drunk on the job, and prunes the shrubbery badly, and pockets the silverware, and makes off with the odd can of salmon out of the pantry. He is who he is today because his breeding and his genes and his god have arranged him to be through a serious of immutable laws against which only a fool or The Help would presume to argue. He is what his golden life has made him to be, and his golden life was only the bare minimum of that to which god and nature entitled him. To ask him to doubt any of this is to ask him to doubt gravity or the movement of the tides.

  15. Dv 16

    Govt chases debt of one cent

    No one from the ministry would be interviewed. Instead it issued a statement saying it knows the one cent overpayment looks silly, but that it sends millions of letters a year through a system which doesn’t distinguish between amounts of debt.

    Read more: http://www.3news.co.nz/Govt-chases-debt-of-one-cent/tabid/1607/articleID/269608/Default.aspx#ixzz26mAy1k7f

    Compare to
    Education Pay
    On th NovoPay website.
    Many people may notice differences in their pay of up to plus or minus 10 cents. The reason for this is that Novopay, the new schools’ payroll service, rounds each component of pay separately and the accumulation may result in the up to 10 cents difference.

  16. felix 17

    Season 4 of the excellent “The Thick Of It” is currently playing in the UK, as someone kindly noted in one of the social threads recently.

    Do you think the David Shearer and the Labour leadership team are watching? I certainly hope so. The latest episode, aired a couple of days ago, is all about them.

    http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xtmtk2_the-thick-of-it-s04e02-hdtv-www-movie1k-ch_shortfilms

    (If you don’t have time to watch the whole thing, start about 3 and a half minutes in)

    • Uturn 17.1

      I will look forward to Shearer’s next speech where he refers to the “quiet bat-people” of NZ.

      • just saying 17.1.1

        Utter genius. Who knew British TV had this outstanding satire about NZ’s current ‘shad-cab’?

        First rule of Breakfast club -don’t talk about breakfast club!

        Btw who’s Malcom?

  17. AAMC 18

    Politics isn’t going to solve it unless the community forces them!

    https://www.facebook.com/FeedingOurFuture

    • Uturn 18.1

      Speaking of quiet bat people…

      A site dedicated to feeding hungry children describes them as “…starving to be better people.”

      :shock:

      How about,

      “We are committed to using our time and expertise to feed our children, the future of our country.”

    • SpaceMonkey 18.2

      Quite true… as Thom Hartmann on RT’s ‘The Big Picture’ pointed out a few months ago, the issue of African-American civil rights wasn’t among any political party’s policies until the protests started and the politicians saw the groundswell of public opinion.

      Meaningful change has to start at a grassroots level, once a critical number is reached, the meme/movement/thinking hits mainstream. I wonder if we are beginning to see this in NZ with the issues of children in poverty and inequality. At present many are in denial or anger (“it’s the parents fault for making bad choices”, etc) which are just two of the 5 stages of awakening:

      http://dont-tread-on.me/?p=454

      Could child-poverty and inequality, in which the state of both are an affront to what it means to be a New Zealander and the principles this country was founded on, be the trigger that results in NZ’s version of the Arab-spring uprisings?

  18. Draco T Bastard 19

    Well, somebody did say a few days ago that the next distraction from NACT would be announcing a royal visit.

  19. captain hook 20

    what I want to know is who is the Mcguiness institute who are “voluntarily” assisting the constitutional advisory panel?
    and why?
    So who is paying them?
    Where do they get their money from?
    These questions must be answered if democracy is to be preserved in New Zealand.

  20. Dv 21

    Is that you gosman?

  21. THE ‘DEAR JOHN’ LETTER – handed over to Electorate staff at PROTEST OUTSIDE JOHN BANKS’ ELECTORATE OFFICE 27 Gillies Ave, Newmarket, today, Tuesday 18 September 2012:

    The following letter was given to John Banks’ electorate staff by Jax (I have been trespassed for 2 years from this office, having been arrested for wilful trespass on 18 June 2012 – Court case tomorrow

    Wed. 19 September 2012 CRI- 2012- 004 -113 21
    Auckland District Courtroom 11, Albert St
    9am (Protest outside from 8.30am)

    _________________

    OPEN LETTER TO THE ‘HONORABLE’ JOHN BANKS – MP FOR EPSOM

    18 September 2012

    Dear John,

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

    Mr Banks says the changes are well overdue.

    “As Charles Dickens said in 1838 the law is an ass – and it’s important that the Government cleans it up. No candidate for public office should go through what I had to go through.”

    Given your above-mentioned publicly-stated concerns about the local electoral law ‘being an ass’, and needing to be ‘cleaned up’ – I would like to give you the opportunity to ‘put your money where your mouth is’ (as it were), on this matter.

    I am formally requesting that YOU please be the Member of Parliament to present the following petition to the House, at your earliest available opportunity:

    “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.”

    You may find it to be noteworthy that the first signature on this petition is that of Kim Dotcom, whose financial assistance to your 2010 Auckland Mayoral campaign, you may recall?

    Looking forward to your prompt response to this VERY important matter.

    Kind regards,

    Penny Bright
    ‘Anti-corruption campaigner’
    2010 Auckland Mayoral candidate

  22. Paul 23

    Listening to The Panel and an interview with a Banks Peninsula school about their closing down..after Campbell Live’s programme yesterday about another school in Christchurch.
    Sounds like the ideas from ‘Disaster Capitalism’ by Naomi Klein and what happened to New Orleans after Katrina.

  23. xtasy 24

    The Social Security (Benefit Categories and Work Focus) Amendment Bill 67-1:

    This new, 191 page long, bill can be found under the following link:
    http://www.legislation.govt.nz/bill/government/2012/0067/latest/DLM4542304.html

    The new proposed benefit regime is intended to come into force from 15 July 2013, and it contains legal provisions under which the OUTSOURCING of assessments on beneficiaries for work capacity, of “work preparation exercises” and of “administrative services” will be made possible to private non government agencies and service providers.

    There are obligations for ALL beneficiaries, incl. beneficiary parent(s) and caregiver(s):

    ● A NEW section 60 GAG by section 39 of Act to place obligation of beneficiary to work with “service providers”;
    ● Sanctions can be imposed under section 117 if client fails to comply with this;
    ● Attendance of “work preparation exercises” can be expected under section 60Q;
    ● See also section 125A (amended) re contracts with “administration service providers”.

    Sole Parent Support:
    ● This new, more restrictive benefit is covered by new sections 20A to 20H;
    ● already announced “social obligations” will be expected.

    Supported Living Payment:
    ● The new benefit that can be granted on grounds of sickness, injury or disability, and which is supposed to replace the invalid’s benefit, is covered by sections 40A to 40K;
    ● Supporting living payment recipients exempted ONLY if terminally ill, or if found to be suffering from conditions that are likely to deteriorate or “not improve”;

    Consequential Amendments:
    Re “supported living payment” benefit – see clause 88 re some changes in schedule 6 for present IB

    Drug Testing Obligations:
    and easily WINZ will place such obligations on job-seeker beneficiaries that are asked to have drug tests done on them for jobs where employers require this;
    ● A 50 per cent cut to the benefit can be imposed if a client/applicant fails such a drug;
    ● section 12J is to be amended to limit rights of appeals to the Appeal Authority if “medical” reasons are given (see sections 116C and 102B) for failing drug tests;
    ● WINZ will “compensate” employers for costs of drug tests where clients “fail” to pass them, and will then reclaim those costs from the clients (!);
    ● Beneficiaries who fail an initial drug test will also have to pay for re-compliance drug tests;

    Social Obligations by beneficiary parents:
    a) Enrol newborns with GP;
    b) Participate in ECE;
    c) Ensure attendance of school by children in their care

    Stopping benefit payments for clients who face a warrant of arrest after 28 days of issue:
    ● 10 days notice, then a “cut” of the benefit can and will be imposed;

    ● an immediate “stop” is imposed if a beneficiary – against whom a warrant has been issued – poses a “serious risk to the public”

    Disability Allowance changes and other ‘preferred supplier arrangements’:
    ● Possible “preferred supplier arrangements” for “procurement of goods and services” for welfare recipients in certain circumstances (see s 69C and also sections 125AA and 132AD);
    ● Under section 82 the C.E. can determine payment to preferred supplier or beneficiary for goods or services required as advance or special assistance needs (see also section 125AA);
    ● See also section 124 (1BA) for further provisions re “special assistance”.

    Regulations:
    ● Section 132AD provides for regulations that can set harsher standards and criteria for how “disability allowance” funds paid to beneficiaries are to be used for “specified expenses”;
    ● Other sub-sections under section 132 provide for regulations to be made for the granting, expiry and re-granting “specified benefits” and so forth.

    Re Application for Benefits:
    ● New sections 11E and 11H for “job seeker support” (incl. sick, injured, disabled) applicants, setting out “pre benefit activities” expected of them; new sections 11G and 11H set out consequences for applicants “failing” to meet such “activities” (incl. their spouse/partner);
    ● All beneficiaries appear to have to re-apply for their specified benefits (after 12 months);
    ● See also new sections 80BE and 80 BF re expiry, re-granting and so.

    Work Ability Assessments:
    ● Section 88F sets out job seeker obligations for seeking employment, and under 88F (2) the C.E. must determine the capacity to work for a job seeker – granted that support because of sickness, injury or disability; this basically allows the C.E. to “over rule” medical based assessments (in some forms)!
    ● Hence a “deferral” for “job seekers” is discretionary and based on C.E.’s determinations;
    ● Section 88H (2) allows job seeker (with sickness, injury or disability) to “apply” for “deferral”.
    ● New sections 100B and 100C to require beneficiaries to attend and participate in work ability assessments (virtually ALL beneficiaries);
    ● Section 100B (4) leaves it to the C.E. to determine the way such assessments are conducted;
    ● Procedure(s) for doing this are determined by the C.E. or her/his staff (!!!)
    ● Section 100C also leaves it up to the C.E. to determine appropriate times and frequencies of re-assessments!

    The existing medical appeal rights to a ‘Medical Board’ will in future be covered by a new section 10B (re-enacting section 53A), it changed only a bit

    Sanctions:
    ● New sections 116B and 116C replace existing sections 115 and 116A for imposing sanctions of beneficiaries not meeting a range of obligations;
    ● Other sections address matters how other sanctions for non compliance are imposed;

    ● Section 116C (2) lists some exemptions from sanctions to be imposed for failing drug testing, like drug dependency, medication that is prescribed and needs to be taken by a client

    Abatement:
    A harsh abatement regime under section 88B (6) for jobseeker support (52 week earnings to benefit comparison); so if a person earns as much as she/he could get on a benefit within 52 weeks, that may mean, NO benefit, as a client/applicant may be expected to “save” and provide for unforeseen job-loss.

    Ineligibility:
    Section 88D penalises unemployed “job seeker” beneficiaries if “fellow workers” (of a union the client/applicant belongs to), caused industrial action (strikes) leading to resulting “unemployment”. This basically makes it yet more difficult to defend worker’s rights.

    Appeal rights denied in certain cases:
    When it comes to forms of certain payments of advances, of disability allowance costs and some other “special assistance”, there is NO right to appeal WINZ decisions!

    This bill is a MONSTER bill, not only due to some controversial, excessively harsh provisions; it is so overly complex, it will be impossible to properly implement and apply in praxis. It further “over-amends” an old Act that has previously received endless amendments. The proposed changes make the Social Security Act extremely difficult to use and apply, as it is very difficult to do this already. Staff will face an administrative nightmare to use the law after all these changes. It would have been a better solution to bring in a whole new statute!

    Ultimately all this will just re-enforce the reality we have already: That beneficiaries are second class, stigmatised and disowned citizens and residents in this country.

    • just saying 24.1

      http://blog.greens.org.nz/2012/09/18/take-your-vitamins-nz/

      Thank gods for the Greens providing some goddamn opposition…

      Jan Logie
      Take your vitamins NZ
      Published: September 18, 2012
      by Jan Logie

      ….Because yesterday the Government confirmed plans to reform the sickness benefit system.

      Basically they’re getting rid of the sickness benefit merging it into the wider job seeker benefit, albeit with some exemptions from work readiness activities if someone is deemed too sick….

      …This legislation will require people diagnosed with cancer to focus on what they’re capable of, in terms of employment, rather than what they’re not. This will change once they’ve been diagnosed as terminal. If they want to keep working or look for work then great but if not surely a reasonable society would let someone battling cancer focus on that battle and not siphon their energies off into proving their work readiness or availability.

      To require people who are sick to engage in work readiness activities and look for work assumes they don’t know what’s best for them. It even seems to assume their doctor doesn’t know either.

      The evidence that shows the negative health impacts of income support is contestable and I don’t think it can be used to draw the conclusions that this Government has drawn. There is some evidence that receiving income support has negative health consequences, but this has not to my knowledge considered if this would still be true if the benefit wasn’t set below the poverty level. It also ignores the research that shows it’s actually worse to be in low paid vulnerable employment with poor conditions than it is to be on welfare….

    • weka 24.2

      Looks like they want to abolish Sickness Benefit.

      I agree, it’s hard to make sense of all of that. Will the MSD have published something that interprets it? 

      • xtasy 24.2.1

        I met a fair few people who have due to permanent health conditions been on the sickness benefit for years, while it is only meant to be a type of benefit for short to medium term sick and disabled or “incapacitated”. Really some of them should be on IB, but as most struggle to cope with WINZ staff, do not understand the law and their rights, they never dare to challenge decisions.

        Cost saving has already been the agenda for years, and the government drums it into people’s heads, that there are 13 per cent of working age people on benefits, which is unaffordable. But why not compare the 320,000 benefit reliant with the total population then?

        Much spin and manipulation, that is the truth. So many more thousands are supposed to take up jobs, while manufacturing goes down the toilet, jobs are harder to get and poverty is rampant even amongst low paid workers. So they are supposed to make a living by delivering each others pizza and burgers, cut each others hair and mow lawns, I suppose.

        Divide and rule, that is the agenda.

  24. belladonna 25

    Of course the unemployment benefit is a lot less than sickness or invalid benefit, the outcome is obvious.

    • weka 25.1

      SB and UB are the same rate (IB is higher). The difference is that on SB you are not required to look for a job. Looks like they’re not going after IB this time round at a legislative level, although they are messing with it via policy.

      • xtasy 25.1.1

        Sickness beneficiaries have already been “work tested” since May last year – in at least some cases, where case managers or other WINZ staff (Regional Health Advisors, Regional Disability Advisors) considered them “capable” of doing some work (usually part time).

        http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10723662

        Hence there have already been many cases, where WINZ staff members interpreted certain information supplied by doctors on new medical certificates (called now ‘work capacity certificates’) in their own “biased” manner. Yes, they have in some cases definitely over-ruled what doctors may have decided, pressuring sick persons to look for jobs.

        So much is not known in the wider public, it is NOT funny.

        It will all get much worse, if this bill gets passed as it is written.

  25. So key is doing gagagags as well as the fake hui and it’s all for the court case to come.

    Prime Minister John Key says a decision by some Tainui iwi to boycott the Government’s water consultation hui strengthens the Government’s legal position should the matter end up in court.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/7692845/Water-hui-boycott-strengthens-Governments-position-Key

    On his way into caucus at Parliament this morning he was asked about the unity around the water issue at the national hui last week called by King Tuheitia.

    He suggested that from the media reports he had seen there wasn’t unity.

    “There are kind of more positions than Lady Gaga’s got outfits.”

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/maori/news/article.cfm?c_id=252&objectid=10834827&ref=rss

    Deliberate and it will fail, as I have said on my post

    His deliberate ignorance is not an advantage it is a weakness and the more he speaks, the more that weakness is revealed. He thinks he is smarter than he really is – but he isn’t.

    http://mars2earth.blogspot.co.nz/2012/09/undo-gag.html

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    The Jackal | 22-08
  • July 14 Patronage results
    The patronage results for July are now available and they show another strong month of growth. Auckland public transport patronage totalled 72,740,387 passengers for the 12 months to Jul-2014, an increase of +0.5% on the 12 months to Jun-2014 and +5.9%...
    Transport Blog | 22-08
  • Would the real National Party please stand up
    This election campaign is turning into a joke. National, through John Key and to a lesser extent Steven Joyce, appear to be telling us either not to believe emails people from their sidewrote or that somehow a smear campaign involves...
    My Thinks | 22-08
  • A right wing conspiracy
    In just one week we've gone from the Prime Minister claiming that nothing in Nicky Hager's new book, Dirty Politics, was true to irrefutable proof that Ministers and their staff were directly involved in smear campaigns using the poisonous blog...
    The Jackal | 22-08
  • The Prime Minister responds again
    Hello there. I just wanted to spend some time to respond to some of the baseless accusations that have been flying around this week. First of all, Labour need to be ashamed about the way they have behaved. They have...
    My Thinks | 22-08
  • The most bullshit OIA response ever
    On July 30, we learned via Question Time that Murray McCully had allowed an email informing him that the Malaysian government was not waiving Muhammad Rizalman’s diplomatic immunity to sit unread in his mailbox for an indeterminate amount of time....
    No Right Turn | 22-08
  • Lucy
    ...
    Notes from the edge | 22-08
  • Sick again
    This post is part of the 100 Days ProjectDay 42I've got nothing interesting to share about the world - my temperature is up and I feel crummy - again.  It's probably nothing much, but after a week of lethargy and...
    Notes from the edge | 22-08
  • Voice-over!
    This post is part of the 100 Days ProjectDay 38Political scandles notwithstanding, I've spent the last two days learning how to be a voice artist, in as much as this is possible in a two day period.  It was a...
    Notes from the edge | 22-08
  • My mechanic is a right-winger
    This post is part of the 100 Days ProjectDay 37My mechanic is one of my favourite service providers.  On days when I have to leave my car for repair he drives me to work while telling hilarious, off-colour stories about...
    Notes from the edge | 22-08
  • Craft Kitchen
    This post is part of the 100 Days ProjectDay 36Craft Kitchen is an organic, gourmet sort of cafe which opened near the corner of Ponsonby and Great North Roads a bit over a month ago.  The first week it was...
    Notes from the edge | 22-08
  • Letter to the Editor – Transparency in government – do we have it or no...
    . . from: Frank Macskasy to: Dominion Post <letters@dompost.co.nz> date: Fri, Aug 22, 2014 subject: Letters to the Editor . The Editor Dominion Post . Some National Party supporters are keen to over-look allegations of wrong-doing and dirty politics in...
    Frankly Speaking | 22-08
  • Letter to the Editor – Transparency in government – do we have it or no...
    . . from: Frank Macskasy to: Dominion Post <letters@dompost.co.nz> date: Fri, Aug 22, 2014 subject: Letters to the Editor . The Editor Dominion Post . Some National Party supporters are keen to over-look allegations of wrong-doing and dirty politics in...
    Frankly Speaking | 22-08
  • Letter to the Editor – The Marianna’s Trench or Pluto?! WTF was Key hol...
    . . from:      Frank Macskasy to:           Sunday News <editor@sunday-news.co.nz> date:      Fri, Aug 22, 2014 subject: Letter to the editor . The editor Sunday News . He says he doesn’t know about Judith Collins...
    Frankly Speaking | 22-08
  • Letter to the Editor – The Marianna’s Trench or Pluto?! WTF was Key hol...
    . . from:      Frank Macskasy to:           Sunday News <editor@sunday-news.co.nz> date:      Fri, Aug 22, 2014 subject: Letter to the editor . The editor Sunday News . He says he doesn’t know about Judith Collins...
    Frankly Speaking | 22-08
  • Letter to the Editor – Just what is the Prime Minister’s role?!
    . . FROM: Frank Macskasy SUBJECT: Letter to the Editor DATE: Fri, 22 Aug 2014 TO: The Listener <letters@listener.co.nz. . The editor The Listener . John Key says he knew nothing about the activities of his one-time media consultant, Jason...
    Frankly Speaking | 22-08
  • Letter to the Editor – Just what is the Prime Minister’s role?!
    . . FROM: Frank Macskasy SUBJECT: Letter to the Editor DATE: Fri, 22 Aug 2014 TO: The Listener <letters@listener.co.nz. . The editor The Listener . John Key says he knew nothing about the activities of his one-time media consultant, Jason...
    Frankly Speaking | 22-08
  • A life working for social justice, David Shearer
    I believe New Zealand can be the best country in the world, where everyone can get a fair go and anyone prepared to work for it can achieve their dream....
    Labour campaign | 22-08
  • Key’s pathetic excuses
    Aug 15, 2014Aug 18, 2014Aug 18, 2014Aug 19, 2014Aug 20, 2014...
    The Jackal | 22-08
  • Ancient ocean currents may have changed pace and intensity of ice ages
    This is a re-post from the National Science Foundation Climate scientists have long tried to explain why ice-age cycles became longer and more intense some 900,000 years ago, switching from 41,000-year cycles to 100,000-year cycles. In a paper published this...
    Skeptical Science | 22-08
  • Is Whale Oil a journalist (2)?
    Some time ago, I wrote about Cameron Slater’s claim to be a journalist, which he is invoking for the purposes of protecting his confidential sources. The District Court ordered him to turn over his sources in a defamation case brought...
    Media Law Journal | 22-08
  • Government considering starting CRL on time
    I’ve long suspected the realities surrounding the City Rail Link and its close relationship to some of the biggest development projects in Auckland would in some ways force the governments hand and require an earlier start than 2020. Yesterday the...
    Transport Blog | 22-08
  • Poll of polls
    Polity's poll of polls is up to date, over at the Poll of Polls page. The short version, good to use as a more-or-less pre-Dirty Politics baseline, is: National: 50.4% Labour: 26.4% Greens: 12.0% NZF: 4.6% InternetMANA: 2.3% Conservative: 2.1%...
    Polity | 22-08
  • Primary Teachers Rise Up!
    I have been a primary teacher for 35 years and for over half of that time I have been an active member of the New Zealand Educational Institute, New Zealand's largest education union. NZEI Te Riu Roa represents 50,000 members, including...
    Local Bodies | 22-08
  • Friday melts, weird weather and whales (it’s been a long time…)
    It’s been a long time since my last post: apologies for that. You may blame a bad cold, an urgent need for root canal work, the peak of the truffle season (and truffle tours for culinary heroes1 ), the start...
    Hot Topic | 22-08
  • John Key’s Top 69 Lies – Today No. 29: It’s a left-wing smear campaig...
     Key: 'Left wing smear campaign'   Key continues to back Collins    John Key is wrong. He is not the victim of a smear campaign, and here's why: First, let's define "smear campaign". Wikipedia: A smear campaign, smear tactic or simply smear is...
    Arch Rival | 22-08
  • How Many National MPs are Corrupt?
    Reading through the ‘dumps’ of information allegedly showing Scumbag Adulterer Cameron Slater’s messages with National Party Hacks, there is a lot of discussions about money changing hands, Tobacco Companies making ‘donations’, and so on. Not only has Key’s Office and...
    An average kiwi | 22-08
  • Tolley feeds Slater too
    Because of Nicky Hager's excellent book, Dirty Politics, we know that a number of senior National party officials and Ministers have been caught out supplying information and content to the Whale Oil Beef Hooked blogsite, information that Cameron Slater uses...
    The Jackal | 22-08
  • Unsurprising
    No bloggers have signed up to join the Online Media Standards Authority. This isn't really surprising. For a start, membership costs $500 a year (and ten times that if too many people complain) - well beyond the means of most...
    No Right Turn | 22-08
  • Nelson fishing museum satire or not?
    Apparently, unless Fairfax is now taking on The Civilian in the field of satirical news, the Minister of Conservation Nick Smith and fishing magnate Peter Talley are planning a fishing museum in Nelson. And the Minister considers this "ambitious new...
    Greenpeace NZ blog | 22-08
  • Steering By The Real: Chris Trotter Responds To Paul Buchanan.
    Uncharacteristically Idealistic: Normally a cool-headed realist (as befits an expert in international relations) Dr Paul Buchanan has taken issue with Chris Trotter's "cynical" Bowalley Road posting Dirty Politics - Is There Any Other Kind? by offering a passionately idealistic defence of...
    Bowalley Road | 22-08
  • This should not have taken five years
    Back in 2009, after the Herald was given information showing that National MP Kanwaljit Singh Bakshi was suspected by the Immigration Service of paying off a woman at the centre of allegations he had made bogus job offers, Immigration Minister...
    No Right Turn | 22-08
  • Poll of Polls update – 22 August 2014
    The latest Herald Digipoll has just been released, and with a polling window running from 14 August to 20 August, the entirety of the polling was completed following the release of Dirty Politics. The results show a sharp fall of 4.9% for National. However,...
    Occasionally erudite | 22-08
  • Hard News: In The Green Room
    Next Thursday, John Key and David Cunliffe will meet in the first TVNZ leaders' debate. At the same time, Green Party co-leaders Metiria Turei and Russel Norman will appear in The Green Room, a "companion" debate streamed live online.I'll be...
    Public Address | 21-08
  • Walking in Manukau
    Just over a month ago I was out at Manukau City, at the open day of the new MIT, which doubles as Manukau station. This is a brilliant facility, with world class integration of land use and transport. If you...
    Transport Blog | 21-08
  • World News Brief, Friday August 22
    Top of the AgendaThai Junta Leader Appointed PM...
    Pundit | 21-08
  • Housing under National: the facts
    1.       House prices in Auckland Council valuations indicate Auckland house prices have gone up by one-third over the last three years. (Auckland Council) The average Auckland house price has gone up by nearly $225,000 since 2008, up over $75,000 in...
    Labour | 23-08
  • Labour irons out low income tax issue
    The increasing casualisation of work has led to many New Zealand families being disadvantaged through the tax they pay, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. "Many low paid workers are having to work two or three jobs to make ends meet...
    Labour | 22-08
  • Cornered Government comes out swinging
    The National Government is so desperate to keep its dead-in-the-water expert teachers policy alive, it has refused to rule out forcing schools to participate through legislation, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “John Key today attacked the Educational Institute for...
    Labour | 22-08
  • Pacific people continue to go backwards under National
    A report from Victoria University highlights the fact that Pacific people are continuing to go backwards under a National Government, said Labour’s Pacific Affairs spokesperson Su’a William Sio.  “The report shows the largest inequality increases were in smoking, obesity, tertiary...
    Labour | 22-08
  • Wellington transport plan needs to keep moving
    The failure of the Transport Agency to properly look at alternatives to the Basin Reserve flyover is not a good reason for further delays to improving transport in Wellington, Labour MPs Grant Robertson and Annette King say. “The Board of...
    Labour | 22-08
  • Labour’s focus on inequality, kids and better job prospects
    Tackling child poverty and removing barriers to people working part time to enhance their prospects of moving into a fulltime job are highlights of Labour’s Social Development policy. Releasing the policy today, spokesperson Sue Moroney said while part-time work was...
    Labour | 21-08
  • Political staff should give answers under oath
    The Inspector General of Security and Intelligence should use her full statutory powers to question witnesses under oath about the leak of SIS information, says Labour MP Phil Goff. “Leakage of confidential information from the SIS for political purposes is...
    Labour | 21-08
  • High dollar, hands-off Govt sends workers to dole queue
    The loss of up to 100 jobs at Croxley stationery in Auckland is devastating news for their families and the local Avondale community, Labour’s Employment, Skills and Training spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “The company’s inability to compete in international markets...
    Labour | 21-08
  • National’s flagship education policy dead in the water
    National’s plan to create executive principals and expert teachers is effectively dead in the water with news that 93 percent of primary teachers have no confidence in the scheme, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “The fact that teachers are...
    Labour | 21-08
  • Dunedin will be a knowledge and innovation centre under Labour
    Dunedin will become a knowledge and innovation centre under a Labour Government that will back local businesses, support technology initiatives and fund dynamic regional projects, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. “Nowhere has the National Government’s short-sightedness been more apparently than...
    Labour | 21-08
  • Inquiry into SIS disclosures the right decision
    Labour MP Phil Goff says the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security has done the right thing by launching an inquiry into the disclosure of SIS documents about a meeting between himself and the agency’s former director-general. “This inquiry is necessary...
    Labour | 20-08
  • Labour – supporting and valuing carers and the cared for
    Placing real value on our elderly and the people who care for them will be a priority for a Labour Government, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. Releasing Labour’s Senior Citizens policy today David Cunliffe promised that a Labour Government would...
    Labour | 20-08
  • By Hoki! It’s Labour’s fisheries policy
    A Labour Government will protect the iconic Kiwi tradition of fishing by improving access to the coast, protecting the rights of recreational fishers and reviewing snapper restrictions, Labour’s Fisheries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “Catching a fish from the rocks, beach...
    Labour | 20-08
  • Mighty River – Mighty Profits – Mighty hard to swallow
    Mighty River Power’s profit increase of 84 per cent is simply outrageous, says Labour’s Energy spokesperson David Shearer. “Demand for electricity is flat or declining yet the company has made enormous profits. It is the latest power company to celebrate...
    Labour | 19-08
  • Collins’ actions were wrong, not unwise
    John Key’s moral compass remains off-kilter as he cannot bring himself to declare Judith Collins’ actions outright wrong, not simply ‘unwise’, said Labour MP Grant Robertson. “Under pressure John Key is finally shifting his stance but his failure to condemn...
    Labour | 19-08
  • Public servants behaving with more integrity than their masters
    The State Services Commission's new report on the integrity of our state services reflects the yawning gap between the behaviour of public servants and that of their political masters, Labour's State Services spokesperson Maryan Street says. “This report, which surveyed...
    Labour | 19-08
  • Phil Twyford Speech to NZCID
    "Labour's plan to build more and build better: how new approaches to housing, transport and urban development will deliver cities that work" Phil Twyford, Labour Party spokesperson on housing, transport, Auckland issues, and cities.  ...
    Labour | 19-08
  • Labour commits to independent Foreign Affairs and Trade
    “Labour is committed to New Zealand’s Foreign Affairs and Trade policy being independent and proactive, Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson David Shearer says. “We are a small but respected country. Our voice and actions count in international affairs. Labour will take a...
    Labour | 19-08
  • Key must sack Collins over abhorrent actions
    The latest revelations that Judith Collins sent the contact details of a public servant to WhaleOil in a desperate attempt to divert media attention from a bad story is abhorrent, Labour MP Grant Robertson says. “John Key and Judith Collins...
    Labour | 19-08
  • It’s downhill from here under National
    The forecast drop in exports and predicted halving of growth shows that it’s downhill from here with National, Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker says. “Growth under this Government peaked in June and halves to two per cent in coming years....
    Labour | 19-08
  • John Key loses moral compass over Collins
    John Key has lost his moral compass over Judith Collins’ involvement with Cameron Slater and lost touch with New Zealanders’ sense of right and wrong, Labour MP Grant Robertson says. “Whoever is Prime Minister there are expectations they will not...
    Labour | 18-08
  • Mana Movement General Election 2014 List confirmed
    The MANA List is now confirmed with all the candidates as below (the numbers are the respective Internet MANA rankings). Candidate, Electorate, Internet MANA List Position Hone Harawira, Te Tai Tokerau (1) Annette Sykes, Waiariki (3) John Minto, Mt Roskill (4) Te Hamua Nikora, Ikaroa-Rawhiti...
    Mana | 18-08
  • PREFU likely to confirm dropping exports
    National’s economic management will be put under the spotlight in tomorrow’s PREFU given clear signs the so-called rock star economy has fallen off the stage, with plummeting prices for raw commodity exports, Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker says. “Under National,...
    Labour | 18-08
  • Record profits while Kiwis face a cold winter
    The record profits by two of New Zealand’s largest electricity companies will be a bitter pill for New Zealand households who are paying record amounts for their power, says Labour’s Energy spokesperson David Shearer. “No doubt the Key government will...
    Labour | 18-08
  • Time for John Key to answer yes or no questions
    John Key’s train-wreck interview on Morning Report shows he is no longer capable of a simple yes or no answer and has lost touch with what’s right and wrong, Labour MP Grant Robertson says. “John Key has become so media...
    Labour | 18-08
  • Key must clarify who signed out SIS OIA
    Yet again John Key is proving incapable of answering a simple question on an extremely important issue – this time who signed off Cameron Slater’s fast-tracked SIS OIA request on Phil Goff, said Labour MP Grant Robertson. “John Key’s claim...
    Labour | 18-08
  • Time to invest in our tertiary education system
    A Labour Government will fully review the student support system – including allowances, loans, accommodation support and scholarships – with a view to increasing access and making the system fair, transparent and sustainable, Labour’s Tertiary Education spokesperson Maryan Street says....
    Labour | 17-08
  • Labour will facilitate regional Māori economic development agencies
    The next Labour Government will facilitate the creation of regional Māori economic development groups lead by iwi and hapū to work in partnership with business and public agencies as part of its Māori Development policy. “Labour is committed to working towards...
    Labour | 16-08
  • PRIME MINISTER’S DENIAL AT ODDS WITH NATIONAL PARTY STATEMENT
    Labour’s New Zealand Council has today released an email from the General Manager of the National Party that directly contradicts recent statements from the Prime Minister in relation to the 2011 breaches of Labour Party website databases. In his stand-up...
    Labour | 16-08
  • Labour committed to a healthier NZ for all
    A Labour Government will shift the focus of the health system from narrow targets and short term thinking to make public health and prevention a priority, Labour’s health spokesperson Annette King says. Releasing Labour’s full Health policy today she said...
    Labour | 15-08
  • Time Key took responsibility for Collins
    It is well past time for John Key to take some responsibility for the misuse of power and information by his Minister Judith Collins, and follow through on his last warning to her, Labour MP Grant Robertson says. “The evidence released...
    Labour | 14-08
  • Dear John, time to answer a few questions… – Harawira
    “When Cameron Slater says about Kim Dotcom ‘I have lots on him…death by a thousand cuts…wait till you see what comes out in coming weeks on that fat c***t’, you have to ask whether this is the same Cameron Slater...
    Mana | 14-08
  • MANA CANDIDATE FOR IKAROA RAWHITI OPENS UP ABOUT SUICIDE
    “This week suicide has claimed yet more lives in whanau and communities in Ikaroa Rawhiti, and my heart goes out to those who are dealing with such a tragic loss”, says MANA candidate for Te Ikaroa Rawhiti, Te Hamua Nikora....
    Mana | 14-08
  • Offshore betting in Labour’s sights
    A Labour Government will clamp down on offshore gambling websites that deprive the local racing industry of funds, Labour’s Racing spokesperson Ross Robertson says. Releasing Labour’s racing policy today, he said betting on offshore websites is a major threat to...
    Labour | 14-08
  • Key has serious questions to answer on Dirty Politics
    John Key must answer the serious questions raised in Nicky Hager’s new book which reveal examples of dirty politics that New Zealanders will be deeply concerned about, Labour MP Grant Robertson says. “Many people will be disturbed by the evidence...
    Labour | 14-08
  • Creating an inclusive society for disabled people
    A Labour Government will provide free annual health checks for people with an intellectual disability, Labour’s Disability Issues spokesperson Ruth Dyson said today in announcing Labour’s Disability Issues policy. “We will also employ another 100 additional special education teachers and...
    Labour | 14-08
  • Media Advisory – MANA name change
    This is to advise all media that on the 24th of July the ‘Mana’ party name was officially changed to ‘MANA Movement’ under the Electoral Act 1993.  The inclusion of the word ‘Movement’ in our name shouldn’t come as a surprise...
    Mana | 13-08
  • New Zealand must help in the growing Iraq crisis
    The humanitarian crisis in Iraq looks certain to get worse before it gets better,” said David Shearer Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson. “New Zealand should urgently pledge increased humanitarian assistance to United Nations agencies and NGOs present on the ground....
    Labour | 13-08
  • Allegations of migrant worker rort should be investigated
    Labour is calling for an investigation into the alleged exploitation of workers at Hutt Railway workshops, hired to repair asbestos-riddled DL locomotives. Hutt South Labour MP Trevor Mallard has written to the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment asking that...
    Labour | 13-08
  • Medical and dentistry students get reprieve under Labour
    A Labour Government will restore the right of medical and dentistry students to get student loans after seven years of study because it is the right thing to do, Labour’s Tertiary Education spokesperson Maryan Street says. “Hard on the heels...
    Labour | 13-08
  • National must stop meddling with ACC before the election
    The redesign currently occurring at the Accident Claims Corporation (ACC) for sensitive claims needs to be put on hold immediately, said the Green Party today.The Green Party is concerned about work currently underway at ACC involving the sensitive claims service...
    Greens | 13-08
  • Markets slow but first home buyers still hurting
    First home buyers are hurting more than ever as the supply of affordable houses in the market dries up, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Reserve Bank will be happy LVR minimum deposits and rising interest rates have dampened...
    Labour | 13-08
  • Green Party celebrates MOU win on contaminated sites
    The Green Party is celebrating the announcement of a national register of contaminated sites today, and $2.5 million to start cleaning two sites up. The Green Party and the National Party agreed to include toxic site management work in their...
    Greens | 13-08
  • Emergency staff at breaking point
    The Southern DHB is so cash-strapped it is failing to fill nursing rosters, Labour’s Associate Health spokesperson David Clark says.  “Every day emergency department nurses arrive at work knowing they are likely to be carrying more than their recommended workload. ...
    Labour | 12-08
  • ACC minister fails in mission to change culture
    The latest damning report by the Auditor General shows that the ACC Minister has failed to fulfil her mission to fix the sick culture at ACC and real change will not come till a new Government is elected, the Green...
    Greens | 12-08
  • Labour’s regional development fund to support Palmerston North
    Labour will consider a proposal to develop an inland port at Palmerston North, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. “The Palmerston North community has developed plans for an inland port which will bring jobs and economic growth to a region which...
    Labour | 12-08
  • Green Party announces priorities for Christchurch
    The Green Party has today announced its plan for a fairer, smarter and more democratic Canterbury rebuild, with a focus on smart transport solutions, restoring local democracy, and keeping Christchurch's assets.The plan sits across all of the Green Party's priorities...
    Greens | 11-08
  • Rock-star economy unplugged by China log jam
    The collapse of log prices due to oversupply in China threatens to wash the gloss off what remains of National's so-called rock-star economy, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “Already this year the price of milk solids has plunged by more...
    Labour | 11-08
  • Young job seekers dealt a poor hand
    National's "keep 'em poor" card for young people on a benefit is a sorry substitute for job training, Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Sue Moroney says.  The Government today announced it would extend its payment card scheme to all teen parents...
    Labour | 11-08
  • Labour – achieving change for Kiwi women
    Working towards being a world leader in eliminating violence against women and children will be a priority for a Labour Government. Releasing Labour’s Women’s Affairs policy today spokesperson Carol Beaumont said while Labour had a proud track record of achieving...
    Labour | 11-08
  • A Matter of Whether John Key is Credible
    Headline: A Matter of Whether John Key is Credible Analysis by Selwyn Manning. Prime Minister, John Key.WITHIN NATIONAL’S STRATEGY TEAM there is an acceptance that the facts revealed in the book, Dirty Politics, is chewing away at the party’s popular...
    The Daily Blog | 23-08
  • TDB Political Diary for 2014 Election
    Here are the political events TDB will be covering this election. I will be live tweeting these events and  blog reviews will follow the next day. Internet MANA launch – August – Sunday 24th – 1pm, Western Springs School Green...
    The Daily Blog | 22-08
  • One man’s struggle to find a copy of Dirty Politics
    I’m typing this on top of Dirty Politics.  I got the last copy yesterday morning at the local branch of a chain bookshop.  I was really in to get the paper.  I know it sold out – everyone knows - but the first thing...
    The Daily Blog | 22-08
  • From Tucker to Key – while you were out
      From Tucker to Key – while you were out...
    The Daily Blog | 22-08
  • Amnesty International – Justice is not Blind in Ferguson
    When a US cop pulls a gun on an unarmed man, he could be acting upon a series of impulses that have been formed since before he or she could talk. What does that police officer see in front of...
    The Daily Blog | 22-08
  • Putting an end to zero-hour contracts in 2015
    All around the world attention is being drawn to what have been dubbed in the UK “zero-hour contracts”. These are contracts that don’t have any guaranteed hours even though the worker may be regularly employed. Unite Union has been struggling...
    The Daily Blog | 22-08
  • NZ’s Foreign Aid: The Party Policies Compared
    For the past two elections, I’ve cast my vote based on a single question, which party promises to give the most money in foreign aid? I grant that this is a fairly narrow and simplistic lens through which to judge...
    The Daily Blog | 22-08
  • Steering By The Real: Chris Trotter responds to Paul Buchanan
    WHEN ACADEMICS take to blogging the rest of us best be careful. And when they offer comment on the subject of dirty politics we should all pay attention. I will always remember my history lecturer, Dr Michael Cullen’s, confident dismissal...
    The Daily Blog | 22-08
  • Interview Between Selwyn Manning & Sean Plunket Over SIS Release of OIA...
    During a RadioLive interview between host Sean Plunket and managing director of Multimedia Investments Ltd, journalist Selwyn Manning, a fiery exchange developed after Plunket attempted to “wet flannel” the issue of whether the Prime Minister has been truthful over what...
    The Daily Blog | 22-08
  • “Even though my hours are being cut, my rent doesn’t get cut to compens...
    Fast Food = Slow Pay   Lola is a manager at a major fast food chain. Last year her employer arbitrarily cut her hours from 32 hours to anywhere between 18 and 26 hours each week. “I said I can’t...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Hate Politics has no place in NZ Politics
    I wasn’t going to write about Nicky Hagar’s ‘Dirty Politics’.  There are plenty of policy issues to discuss. Then I read the book, and what it reveals strikes at the very heart of our democracy. My overwhelming feeling is one...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Pak’nSave pull adverts from Whaleoil
    Pak n Save have replied to complaints that their adverts were appearing on hate speech site Whaleoil by deciding to block their adverts from appearing on the site. Their reply… Congratulations for Pak’NSave on making this type of ethical stand. They...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Herald Poll – Why the Greens will hit 15%
    The biggest problem for John Key is that there are swathes of National Party voters who are educated and decent people whom will be forced to read Dirty Politics out of intellectual curiosity and will be horrified by what National...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Coalition for Better Broadcasting – Dirty Politics and Dirty Media
    The Nicky Hager book is mind blowing on so many levels. The revelations of government ministers and their staff colluding with vile and hateful schemers to attack other people, is truly ugly. When the dust settles on the illegalities, immoralities...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • “You just have to keep on fighting” – an interview with Metiria Turei
    We’re meeting in her office. It’s austere, though she does have a nice teapot. The view is startling. One can map the Bowen Triangle, though the teapot is still more interesting. A group of pink faced men are running across...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Taxation and Real Estate – turning housing debate on its head
    The debate about property prices in New Zealand is disingenuous. It is clear that there is a global process in which speculators are using massive amounts of unspent and borrowed money to blow bubbles in the world’s major asset markets....
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • GUEST BLOG: Michael Wood – Faith and politics
    In a week which has seen our collective focus shift to those who see politics as a great game to be manipulated for their own ends, it is timely to reflect on the fact that many people are in fact...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Government’s Own Guidelines Show John Key Would Have Been Informed Of SIS...
    Analysis by Selwyn Manning. INFORMATION THAT I HAVE ACQUIRED, sourced from the State Services Commission, states in black and white the tight guideline requirements that must be followed whenever the SIS informs a Prime Minister of any pending release of...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Simply Not Credible: Dr Tucker’s “clarifications” are only making thi...
    THAT DR WARREN TUCKER, Director of the Security Intelligence Service in 2011, agreed to the release of politically sensitive material – thereby intervening in an on-going contretemps between the leaders of the National and Labour parties – without receiving the...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • The Donghua Liu Affair: Evidence of Collusion between the NZ Herald and Imm...
    . 1. Prologue . The Donghua Liu Affair hit  the headlines on 18 June, with allegations that David Cunliffe wrote a letter in 2003,  on  behalf of  business migrant, Donghua Liu. Four days later, on Sunday 22 June, the Herald...
    The Daily Blog | 21-08
  • Dear Canon NZ – Malevolence should induce revulsion, it shouldn’t be ce...
    Giovanni Tiso’s analysis on Slater is possibly the best in NZ… It’s been a good week for some of us. A week of feeling vindicated, offeeling galvanised. Where it goes from here will depend on several factors, some of which are largely...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • 5AA Australia: After Dirty Politics Can National Provide Stable Government?
    AS WE ALL KNOW New Zealanders and Australians do not like political parties that are unstable, or can no longer assure us that they are able to provide stable government. And the big question for Kiwis as we prepare to...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • SIS letter means it’s over for Key
    It’s over. I may not agree with all of Phil Goff’s positions, but you can’t question his integrity the way Slater did in Dirty Politics and not be deeply concerned that our Secret Intelligence Agency is being used for political...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • who to vote for in Epsom
    who to vote for in Epsom...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • The Rise and Fall of John Key – who will be the next leader of National P...
    . . It was all set to go: Teamkey would be the cult of personality that would do Stalin, Mao, Reagan, Thatcher, or any of the Nth Korean Kim Dynasty, proud.  National and it’s “Teamkey” propaganda strategy   would cash-in Big Time...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • Who said Kiwis couldn’t get a fire in their bellies over an arcane intern...
    An amazing team of activists has taken the campaign on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) to local governments throughout the country. Their latest triumph came last Monday when the Dunedin City Council endorsed a resolution expressing concern about the TPPA...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • National’s Dangerous Education Agenda Exposed
    Putting aside the dirty politics coming out of the Beehive and the right-wing blogisphere, there are some very strong signals that another term of a National Government would do even more serious damage to the public education system. The Education...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • We can have clean politics and get our democracy back.
    Something is rotten in our politics and it stinks. Dirty politics has sadly become one of the defining features of this election campaign. In the light of recent revelations about the extent of nasty and disingenuous political strategies, it would...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • Book burning copies of Hager’s book? The next generation of National Part...
    It seems we are getting the next generation of National Party Dirty Politics now. There are claims the Young Nats in Hamilton are buying up copies of Dirty Politics and burning them. One witness was contacted by the Waikato Times...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • National Party Poetry Day Haiku
    Key’s inbox and Cam’s poison most foul, there he blows hoist by own harpoon...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • Why Cunliffe will be the next PM
    David Cunliffe will be the next Prime Minister of NZ. Labour’s inclusive and positive TV adverts… …are in stark contrast to National’s team of white people powering away from the rabble of the ‘others’… …the messaging is vital and crucial...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • From smiling assassin to grumpy butcher – on giving Judith Collins a last...
    After #dirtypolitics Key isn’t the smiling assassin, he is the grumpy butcher. When he said Judith had  a ‘last chance’ he meant 1 second after voting closes on 20th September. Key would love nothing more than to cut Collins loose and end...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • If the National Party rowing advert was real….
    If the National Party rowing advert was real there would be more blood in the water. If the National Party rowing advert was real it would be Cameron Slater calling the strokes. If the national Party rowing advert was real,...
    The Daily Blog | 20-08
  • Cameron Slater: Zionist and political pundit
    It is hard to know where to start with right-wing blogger Cameron Slater (Whale Oil), especially after the release of Nicky Hager’s book Dirty Politics. This confirmed everything many of us thought Slater to be: a snivelling pundit who serves...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • Bryce Edwards stood down from Herald for election season??? Are the editors...
    I only found this out via twitter last night and I am still in shock. Bryce Edwards, easily the best critical thinker and news analyst the NZ Herald has has been stood down by the NZ Herald ‘for the election...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • So who’s a “conspiracy theorist” now?!
    . . As the media storm over Nicky Hager’s book, “Dirty Politics“,  and allegations over smear campaigns continue to swirl,  National’s spin doctors have given Key, Collins, and other National Party ministers a string of  phrases to use in all...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • Momentum shift
    When you are deeply immersed in a local campaign sometimes it can be difficult to see the helicopter view.   I don’t know how accurate the political polls are and have always known that things can change quickly in politics...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • Dear Toby Manhire. Bad call on backing Farrar
    Oh dear. I say this as someone who regards Toby Manhire as one of the smartest journalists/commentators/columnists this country has, and I think Toby has made a terribly dumb call here. Let’s see if Toby is still singing Farrar’s praises...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • Radio NZ apologise to me for getting it wrong
    Radio NZ have contacted me, reviewed the claim by their host that I had an advance copy of Nicky Hager’s book and they have concluded they got it wrong, they have called me and apologised and will make a statement...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • GUEST BLOG: Reclaim UoA – Students’ Message to Steven Joyce
    Tertiary Education – we’ve been sold a lemon  A group of 30 students attended an event on Tuesday evening about ‘the future of tertiary education’ at which the Minister of Tertiary Education Steven Joyce was slated to speak. As Joyce...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • Can someone in the media please ask the PM of NZ to categorically deny any ...
    Now we see the MO of Slater & Co, the setting up, the digging for dirt, the use of staff to dig that dirt, can the Prime Minister of NZ categorically deny any National Party staff worked with Cam Slater...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • Panic setting in for National as they realise what’s about to happen
    And the terror starts to set in. I’ve never seen blind panic like this before  and it’s spreading as the enormity of what’s about to happen starts to sink in. Hager’s book is a mere entree, Nicky’s personal ethics wouldn’t...
    The Daily Blog | 19-08
  • Hager’s Dirty Politics: what the book ultimately reveals is abuse of powe...
    Guide to the many faces of John Key Nicky’s book is now doing what I suspected it would do, create a shockwave of revulsion. Andrew Geddis over at Pundit Blog sums up this attitude best, and it’s reverberations build with every...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • Fancy taking children seriously
    Let’s see why all political parties should pay close attention to the Green Party’s policy for children. First, it is a comprehensive attempt to put children, not ideology, at the heart of family policy. Wow, children at the heart of...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • Amnesty International: Dear Azerbaijan, Stop Torture, Love Kiwi Kids
    This is a world where many adults often underestimate Generation Y. Being only a few years out of being a teenager myself, I feel I can make this statement with certainty. However, I have been the Youth Intern at Amnesty...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • GCSB meetings today in Christchurch 1pm at Uni 7pm at Cathedral
    The 2014 GCSB meetings to discuss the mass surveillance state legislation passed by this Government will be debated in Christchurch today at two different meetings. 1pm at Canterbury University bottom floor James Height Building: Chair: Bomber Bradbury Ruth Dyson – Labour Party...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • Things that 7 Sharp should probably be talking about
    Things that 7 Sharp should probably be talking about...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • Guide to when Key is lying
    Guide to when Key is lying...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • GUEST BLOG: Kate Davis – The State of the Student Nation …or is just Al...
    Students politics are dead and our student media is in terminal decline. The most disappointing thing about university is the politics, or should I say lack of? I was raised with the idea that students held the power.They were the...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • Love Lifts Us Up: Thoughts from the Green Party’s campaign launch.
    Author Eleanor Catton wants people to give their party vote to the Greens.Photo by Peter Meecham NO ONE WAS QUITE SURE how he did it. Somehow Bob Harvey had persuaded the owners of the rights to Joe Cocker’s Up Where...
    The Daily Blog | 18-08
  • The Nation Environment Debate with Amy Adams & Russel Norman
    Lisa Owen: Now, this week's campaign debate. As a handful of islands at the bottom of the world, New Zealand is an environmental treasure, and as Kiwis, we're proud of being clean and greenish. But putting that environment to work...
    Scoop politics | 23-08
  • The Nation: Debate Between Amy Adams And Russel Norman
    Lisa Owen Hosts an Environment Debate Between National’s Amy Adams And Russel Norman From the Green Party....
    Scoop politics | 23-08
  • Travel And Accommodation Determination for MPs Released
    The Remuneration Authority today released its determination covering Members of Parliament New Zealand accommodation, travel services for family members, and travel services for former Prime Ministers and their spouses....
    Scoop politics | 23-08
  • Te Kuiti man imprisoned for images of young children
    A Te Kuiti man caught with pictures of children being sexually abused has been sentenced to ten months imprisonment. Sickness beneficiary Daniel James Parry, 35, appeared for sentence in the Tauranga District Court today (Friday) after pleading guilty...
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • Japan Maritime Training Squadron visit – Open Day, Band
    • The Japan Maritime Self-Defence Force Training Squadron will make port in Auckland from Wednesday 3 September to Saturday 6 September...
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • MP Perk Transparency Needed
    The Taxpayers’ Union is slamming the increase in taxpayer-funded entitlements for MPs and their families published on the legislation website this afternoon . Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says:...
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • Debating the future of Auckland’s housing
    With only weeks until the General Election, Auckland’s mounting housing crisis will be put under the spotlight in an Election Debate hosted by the School of Architecture and Planning at the University of Auckland. The debate’s topic “Market forces...
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • Let’s sort this out – Human Rights Commission
    A Whangarei woman allegedly censured for greeting customers with Kia ora can get in touch with the Human Rights Commission says Race Relations Commissioner Dame Susan Devoy. “We really need to resolve these kinds of issues. I had thought that...
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • Aged Care Association welcomes Labour’s wages policy
    The New Zealand Aged Care Association welcomes the Labour Party’s announcement that if elected, it will raise the minimum wage for aged care workers within its first 100 days in Government....
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • Honorary doctorate for Secretary-General of the UN
    An Honorary Doctor of Laws degree is to be bestowed on His Excellency Mr Ban Ki-moon, Secretary-General of the United Nations, by the University of Auckland on Wednesday 3 September, both in recognition of his role as an international statesman...
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • Surveillance of Mr Upul Jayasuriya
    The New Zealand Bar Association joins the International Bar Association (IBA) and other Law Societies and Bar Associations worldwide over the reported surveillance of Mr Upul Jayasuriya, President of the Bar Association of Sri Lanka....
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • Bob Parker, China State Media and Tibet Forum
    Former Christchurch mayor was signed up to position statement without his knowledge; observed “happiness” in Tibet as Tibetan protesters elsewhere shot by security forces...
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • “Walk the talk to reduce the wage gap”
    There’s just a few weeks left to convince the candidates of all political parties that reducing the wage gaps makes good sense....
    Scoop politics | 22-08
  • Digital Currency on the Drawing Board
    Government policies and digital currency ideas and issues will come together at three public workshops next week....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • NZ Cycle Trail welcomes $8 million fund
    Government funding of $8 million to maintain and enhance the Great Rides of New Zealand will help ensure the trails are delivering the best possible visitor experience, says Evan Freshwater, Manager Nga Haerenga The New Zealand Cycle Trail Inc. (NZCT)....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Judges Comments Bonkers – McVicar
    Napier Conservative Party Candidate Garth McVicar is accusing a Judge of forgetting that he is the gate-keeper for the community and not a benevolent caregiver for law breakers. "The comments by this Judge are not just alarming, they're completely...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Oxfam: World must suspend arms sales to protect civilians
    As the New Zealand Government prepares to ratify the global Arms Trade Treaty, and after ceasefire talks collapsed and violence erupted yet again in Gaza yesterday, Oxfam is calling on all states to immediately suspend transfers of arms or ammunition...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Degrees in Picking up Rubbish
    Responding to the Fairfax media report of a University of Otago survey of Wellington’s street-connected walkways, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says:...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Another Union row
    “ The teachers union the NZEA is getting ready for another industrial dispute. These disputes now only occur in the government sector. National has no one to blame but themselves” said ACT Leader Dr Jamie Whyte....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Whyte: Speech to Grey Power
    National’s failure to increase the age for super and reform health is a threat to every New Zealander’s security....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Local Govt should not go into business
    “No one should take any comfort from the fact that “Infracon”, a roading company in Tararua and Central Hawke's Bay, is to go into liquidation. This puts the future of more than 200 jobs in doubt. ACT sympathises with those...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Join the hikoi to end child poverty in New Zealand
    CPAG is calling on people across society to join a march from Britomart to Aotea Square in Auckland to demand action on child poverty in Aotearoa....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Ngapuhi Chair Says Enough of the Political Sideshow
    Time for side-shows to end so we can focus on future of our nation – Raniera (Sonny) Tau, Chairman, Te Runanga A Iwi O Ngapuhi...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Commissioner of Police v Kim Dotcom And Ors
    An order is made extending the duration of the registration of the restraining orders issued by the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia on 10 and 25 January 2012 and registered in New Zealand on 18...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Labour Announcement on Future of Hillside Workshops Welcome
    Labour leader David Cunliffe’s announcement in Dunedin today that a government led by his party would re-open Hillside Railway workshops was welcomed by the Rail and Maritime Transport Union (RMTU). ‘Since the workshops were shut down in late...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Primary teachers and principals vote to put kids first
    Teachers and principals have voted overwhelmingly against the Government’s controversial “Investing in Educational Success” policy, including proposed highly-paid principal and teacher roles....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Prime Time with Sean Plunkett: Educating for Success
    In all the turmoil stirred up by the "Dirty Politics" revelations, the real issues that the campaign should be about have been put to one side....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Dirty Politics – Number One Bestseller and Back in Stores
    An exposé of the hidden side of New Zealand politics, Nicky Hager's book, Dirty Politics , has been in hot demand since its release last Wednesday....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Epsom: profiling NZ’s most controversial electorate
    Welcome to the wealthy inner Auckland electorate of Epsom: home of coat-tailing, the Tea Tapes, a convicted outgoing MP... and heavy newspaper and magazine readership....
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • Families Free From Violence campaign and website
    We are pleased to announce the launch of our Families Free From Violence campaign and our new Families Free From Violence website. This website has been created to encourage people to take responsibility for ending family violence by seeking help...
    Scoop politics | 21-08
  • PSA And DHBs Reach Settlement on Five Collective Agreements
    The 20 District Health Boards are pleased to reach settlement via mediation on five Multi Employer Collective Agreements (MECAs) with the Public Service Association for 12,000 mental and public health nurses, allied, public health and technical staff,...
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Refusal to complete census results in 46 convictions
    Failing to fill out a census form has resulted in the convictions of 46 people, Statistics New Zealand said today....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Council Amalgamations Still Bad Deal
    Northland, Bay of Plenty, and Wellington ratepayers should not be seduced into accepting the amalgamation of their Councils by a recent amendment to legislation allowing for local boards not community boards, Chris Leitch, Democrats for Social Credit...
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • DHB industrial action withdrawn
    The Public Service Association (PSA) has withdrawn notices of industrial action covering 12,000 health workers at District Health Boards (DHBs) across New Zealand, after progress was made in mediation....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Aged Care Pledge Needs Better Target, Says Care Agency
    Labour’s pledge to set up an aged care working group to address industry concerns is good to see, but appears to skirt the obvious issue of a looming lack of beds and carers for our rapidly growing elderly population, says...
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Social inequality still rife in New Zealand
    Social inequality has worsened over the past decade in New Zealand, a new study from Victoria University of Wellington shows....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Working towards a living wage and more Māori in paid work
    The Māori Party will build on the gains it has already achieved in Government and accelerate job opportunities particularly for young Māori....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Deepwater Group Supports Changes to Catch Limits
    The Deepwater Group says the increase in the Total Allowable Commercial Catch for hoki shows the benefits of a long term commitment to build biomass in this major New Zealand fishery....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • ACT announces Ohariu candidate Sean Fitzpatrick
    “Our Ohariu candidate will be Sean Fitzpatrick. Sean has strong ties to the region and I’m glad to hear he will be doing his best to grow ACT’s party vote in the area,” says Dr Whyte....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • ACT announces Tauranga candidate Stuart Pederson
    “Our Tauranga candidate will be Stuart Pedersen. Stuart has strong ties to Tauranga and I’m glad he has agreed to do his best to grow ACT’s party vote in the electorate,” says Dr Whyte....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Green Party scores massive own goal
    Green Party scores massive own goal as their own policy auditor criticises their fiscal plan...
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Green Party’s own Auditor of their Budget finds it dodgy
    “The Alternative Budget released by the Green's does not even stack up in the eyes of their chosen auditor – Infometrics” said ACT Leader Dr Jamie Whyte....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • New shark finning laws fall short for threatened species
    Environmental groups are welcoming some aspects of a raft of law changes announced today in relation to shark finning, but say that overall the chance for New Zealand to catch up with international efforts in shark conservation is being missed....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Promoting Labour’s Positive Policies
    General Secretary of the New Zealand Labour Party, Tim Barnett, today launched Labour’s television advertisements for the 2014 election. The advertisements help tell Labour’s positive story for a better New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Drug Court: Rare Insight into New Alternative Justice Model
    Māori Television’s latest New Zealand documentary presents a fascinating look inside a new alternative justice model – through the stories of convicted criminals....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Political parties pledge to increase overseas aid
    A survey of political parties looking at how much New Zealand should spend on Official Development Assistance (ODA) shows the overwhelming majority of parties are committed to raising the bar according to the Council for International Development (CID)....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Top Kiwis backing Tip the Scales campaign
    Sir Graham Henry, former All Black Kees Meeuws, singer-song writer Jamie McDell and fishing guru Matt Watson have pledged their support to Tip the Scales, a pre-election campaign generating public support for rebuilding New Zealand’s depleted inshore...
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Maritime Union continues to press over dirty politics
    Maritime Union National President Garry Parsloe says Ports of Auckland management is trying to get off the hook from its involvement with extreme right wing bloggers during the Ports of Auckland dispute....
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • No end in sight to overwhelming human cost of conflict
    Two ceasefires have brought some respite to civilians in Gaza and southern Israel, amid hope that a durable cessation of hostilities might occur. In Gaza, these breaks in the fighting have barely given people enough time to seek medical care,...
    Scoop politics | 20-08
  • Young Kiwi speakers to represent NZ at Gallipoli 2015
    The RSA is delighted at the announcement made by Veterans' Affairs Minister Michael Woodhouse today, that all eight regional finalists of the 2015 ANZ RSA Cyril Bassett VC Speech Competition will be included in a group of 25 Youth Ambassadors...
    Scoop politics | 20-08
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