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Open mike 19/12/2011

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, December 19th, 2011 - 106 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…

106 comments on “Open mike 19/12/2011”

  1. Jenny 1

    In New Zealand the news that the $1.8 billion given by the taxpayers to South Canturbury Finance after a 30 minute meeting of cabinet, is now under criminal investigation for fraud, can only make you agree with Monbiot that: “If ever you needed evidence that our governments operate in the interests of the elite, rather than the world as a whole, here it is.”

    Why Is It So Easy to Save the Banks – but So Hard to Save the Biosphere?
    by George Monbiot

    capping climate change would cost around 1% of global GDP, while sitting back and letting it hit us would cost between 5 and 20%. One per cent of GDP is, at the moment, $630bn. By March 2009, Bloomberg has revealed, the US Federal Reserve had committed $7.77 trillion to the banks. That is just one government’s contribution: yet it amounts to 12 times the annual global climate change bill. Add the bailouts in other countries, and it rises several more times.
    This support was issued on demand: as soon as the banks said they wanted help, they got it. On just one day the Federal Reserve made $1.2tr available – more than the world has committed to tackling climate change in 20 years……

    Much of this was done both unconditionally and secretly: it took journalists two years to winkle out the detail. The banks shouted “help” and the government just opened its wallet. This all took place, remember, under George W Bush, whose administration claimed to be fiscally conservative.

    But getting the US government to commit to any form of bailout for the planet – even a couple of billion – is like pulling teeth. “Unaffordable!” the Republicans (and many of the Democrats) shriek. It will wreck the economy! We’ll go back to living in caves!

    I’m often struck by the wildly inflated rhetoric of those who accuse environmentalists of scaremongering. “If those scaremongers have their way they’ll destroy the entire economy” is the kind of claim uttered almost daily, without any apparent irony.

    No legislator, as far as I know, has yet been able to explain why making $7.7tr available to the banks is affordable, while investing far smaller sums in new technologies and energy saving is not……..

    ……..So why is it so easy to save the banks and so hard to save biosphere? If ever you needed evidence that our governments operate in the interests of the elite, rather than the world as a whole, here it is.

    • LynW 1.1

      Thanks for that link. I have passed it on. Onward the 99%, keep exposing the truth and putting it out there!

    • Gosman 1.2

      Not that I agreed with the bailouts but it is not correct to quote figures the way it has been presented here and claim it is equivalent to expenditure when it is more accurate to state much of it was loans or guarrantees. For example the several hundred billion dollar TARP funds have largely been repaid by the banks that took up the funds and the repayments included interest.

    • Lanthanide 1.3

      “capping climate change would cost around 1% of global GDP”

      I seriously, seriously doubt that. The main source of CO2 pollution is coal fired power plants and transportation use of oil.

      Drastically curtailing output from both sources entails replacing the built up capital stock of power plants and cars, globally. That’s going to cost a lot more than 1% of global GDP. That’s before you even confront the ridiculous social pressures that have resulted in the car designs we have today (particularly in the US) where drivers want to feel “safe” even if it means everyone else on the road it more at risk in an accident and fuel consumption is pushed sky-high.

  2. To whoever is continuing to white ant David Cunliffe from within the Labour caucus, please stop.  If you want a united party that is capable of winning the next election this is a bad thing to do.

    • tc 2.1

      Hardly a united party the way the shearer Cunliffe contest played out mickey….old v new and highly unlikely it will stop with the usual suspects behind the white anting and leaks, it’s all they know.

      Welcome to the minor party table.

    • Ingrained habits of negative politics can be a bugger when they keep biting you party’s own bum.

    • Anne 2.3

      From the article mickeysavage linked to:

      Some of the MPs who lined up in the opposing camp are believed to have pushed for Mr Cunliffe to be left off the front bench altogether.

      My words for the individuals in question are stronger than yours mickeysavage. If it continues then they need to be exposed for the childish pratts (or should it be brats) they must be. A number of us know something of what has been going on behind the scenes, and it looks like commonsense has at last prevailed. I hope it is true that David Cunliffe has been offered an ‘appropriate’ portfolio and a level of seniority befitting his abilities. We will find out later today.

    • David H 2.4

      Now why when reading your comment did the name Mallard immediately come to mind ?

  3. vto 3

    So if United Future and its malleable open buttshine policy of allowing the largest party to advance its main policies has credibility what would have happenned if Labour had been able to form the government? Would Dunne have changed everything he has said about asset sales since the election and said asset sales are no good? Would it have resulted in UF doing a complete 100% arse-about? And if so, what does that say about the usefulness of United Future for NZ’s future?

    • Gosman 3.1

      Unless you think minor parties should hold the major parties to ransom United Future’s position seems eminently sensible. Peter Dunne realises that he is very much a junior partner in the arrangement and that this means that while he can expect some policy concessions it would be crazy to expect he could dictate terms. So in your extremely hypothetical situation I would expect Peter Dunne to bow to Labour’s anti-Asset sales policy commitment if they had the numbers to form the next Government if they offered him the opportunity to be part of it.

      • Draco T Bastard 3.1.1

        Unless you think minor parties should hold the major parties to ransom United Future’s position seems eminently sensible.

        It’s not a question of holding them to ransom but of their being support for the policy. UF wasn’t voted in on Nationals policies but their own which have now changed to Nationals. That’s called lying and corruption.

        • Pete George 3.1.1.1

          Very funny. There was no lying involved, everything has been done as indicated during the campaign.

          Labour didn’t campaign on changing their leader straight after the election, how corrupt. Liars.

          Greens campaigned on having a Memorandum of Understanding with National, that hasn’t happened, how corrupt. Liars.

          Dunne has been far more true to his word than both.

          • felix 3.1.1.1.1

            Promise nothing, deliver nothing.

            Can’t go wrong.

          • Colonial Viper 3.1.1.1.2

            Dunne has been far more true to his word than both.

            As felix said, there has been no word to be true to.

            • Pete George 3.1.1.1.2.1

              Felix will have been referring to Labour, Greens, Mana and NZ First. Everyone knew they weren’t promises because they could never be delivered.

              • fender

                Talking about deliveries Pete have you got your new portrait of OverDunne for your bedside table yet? If you real lucky it may have Banks and Key in the photo too.

              • felix

                Oh look, there goes Pete not being a right-winger again.

                • Oh, maybe you were right after all, this makes me 7/8 in line with David Farrar, and 6/8 in line with some other guy…so I guess that makes him a right winger too.

                  • vto

                    What’s the matter with being a right-winger? I was one once and constantly have flashbacks and will probably lurch back there again from time to time.

                  • fender

                    If he turns out to be right wing like you Pete I will personally pay for your new wig.
                    Can’t see him going down Dunnys right wing s-bend plumbing though Pete.

                  • felix

                    Pete thinks he can hold me to the views of the Labour leadership.

                    Silly Pete.

                    • felix, you can’t avoid being seen as a sorry apologist for Labour.

                      That’s what happens here, people apply whatever labels and accuse any associations they want to.

                    • lprent []

                      Felix? Labour? You are confused. I have been watching him for years

                      My guess. He might vote for Labour if he was desperate – and probably has. But he generally votes leftish protest. Probably for more different parties than most protest voters.

                      But he does delight in harassing the pompous and seeing if they can think. Mostly the victims come from the right. But I have seen him harass just about every political belief. He is agnostic about them. It’s the type of person that he is interested in

                    • You may have missed a bit of the game. felix is as Labour as I’m right wing.

                      If he wants to try harrassing right wingers I could suggest a few but it might be a bit outside his comfort zone.

                    • felix

                      Of course Pete.

                      You support a right-wing govt but you’re not a right winger.

                      I don’t support Labour but I’m a Labour supporter.

                      It’s all becoming clear to me now.

    • Peter Dunne could easily have supported Labour’s no asset sales policy seeing as UF had no policy to sell assets. Agreeing with National was a coalition concession, regarding National’ls plans as not being a strong enough to draw a line over it (in line with much of the electorate).

      United Future made it clear though that overall the party would find it too difficult to suppport some of Labour’s other policies, like raising tax rates that had just been lowered, raising the age of eligibility for Super, and arbitrarily raising the minium wage.

      And UF are against Labour’s proposed CGT – the international trend is against comprehensive CGT – and UF believes our current level of CGT, strengthened last year, is sufficient.

      • felix 3.2.1

        ♪ Anyway the wind blows, doesn’t really matter… ♫

        • Pete George 3.2.1.1

          Funny.

          Labour tried to buy, bluster and bullshit their way to power. But yeah, whatever they tried didn’t really matter.

          Greens benefited from slick marketing of vegan pie in the sky policies. What will really matter if they ever get into power is if they can maintain integrity with their populist cetre-ish promises and at the same time keep their activist core happy. Next election they will actually have to front up with a viable plan.

          • felix 3.2.1.1.1

            ♫ …tooooo Peeeeeete…… ♪

            • Gosman 3.2.1.1.1.1

              Politics is not a fight to the death Felix regardless of the hard left’s outdated class war meme.

              • rosy

                “Politics is not a fight to the death”

                Only give your narrow world view, Gosman.

              • Hmmm,

                I don’t consider Warren Buffet a hardcore leftist and here is what he said: It’s a class war and my side is winning!

              • locus

                You’re quite wrong Gosman, roughly half of the NZ public oppose the policies, methods and tactics of the right-wing, and for most socially concerned people in NZ politics really is a fight to the death to kill off neo-con free-market ideology

                • roughly half of the NZ public oppose the policies, methods and tactics of the right-wing

                  You’ve got no way of knowing that, and it is obviously not going to be correct.

                  We know about half the voters voted for a party that is not part of the coalition government. We have no idea how many of them “oppose the policies, methods and tactics of the right-wing”. A preference of one party over another does not determine opposition.

                  A vote for a non coalition party does not necessarily prove support for “the policies, methods and tactics of the left-wing” either.

                  • felix

                    Actually that’s exactly what a vote means, Pete. It tells us what policies people support and oppose.

                    You can argue that it’s imprecise, of course, and you can argue that some people might support more than one party’s policies. And that’s what your argument above boils down to – that someone could vote Labour or Green but still support asset sales for example.

                    I realise that thinking through the implications of your statements has never been your strong suit, but you should be very careful with this one or you’re going to find it awfully tricky to keep claiming the National/ACT/UF has a mandate to do anything.

        • just saying 3.2.1.2

          What’s the tag for the musical notes felix?

      • ropata 3.2.2

        Evasions, excuses, and half truths PG.

        “UF had no policy [other than] agreeing with National” — Fixed it for you.

        A slim margin in the Ohariu electorate does not constitute a mandate to sell strategic public assets.

        CGT: It’s the OECD norm, but who cares as long as we can push the property bubble a bit further eh?

        PS: The notion of a UF “party” is a joke, Dunne retires at the next election and the Useless Follicles will be forgotten

        • Pete George 3.2.2.1

          An increased margin in Ohariu is a reasonable mandate for Dunne to do what he campaigned on – which is what he is doing.

          Being a party with a pivotal vote is seriously in the business of government. Labour and Greens are showing their ineffectual miffedness.

          You’re ignoring the fact that National tightened up on New Zealand’s CGT last year?

          Labour didn’t even give a priority to CGT in their campaigning, it was more of a Hail Mary policy than something they were dedicated to handing over to experts to work out for them.

          • The Voice of Reason 3.2.2.1.1

            “An increased margin in Ohariu is a reasonable mandate for Dunne to do what he campaigned on – which is what he is doing.”
             
            Pete finally acknowledges that UF is a fig leaf for independent Ohariu MP Peter Dunne. 
             
            And if you are going to quote margins, a statistical figure with little political value, how about quoting UF’s vote nationally, which is politically important. Did it go up or did it go down, Pete? And if it went down, what do you think that means in terms of Dunne’s mandate to flog assets?

            • locus 3.2.2.1.1.1

              Dunne’s only mandate is that he promised during the election campaign to be a stable partner for National. This is why all Nat party supporters in his electorate voted him in. The concept of UF being independent (let alone an independent party) is laughable as is clearly reflected in its national vote.

            • Pete George 3.2.2.1.1.2

              As you know the UF party vote went down. That adds weight to the mandate via an electorate that gave most support to National. It was also an electorate who voted for a candidate that clearly indicated he would allow National’s major policy to proceed. Even some Labour MPs recognise this. And…

              This Parliament was democratically elected and if the government of the day has the numbers to pass legislation, it is not for us to try to frustrate that.

              Do you know who said this?

              • McFlock

                Don’t be a moron, pete – there is a significant difference between filibustering parliament so nothing gets done, and actively supporting legislation put forward by your coalition partner.
                  
                The electorate did not give majority support to national, or asset sales of any extent. Your spineless party does that. Don’t pretend it’s not peter dunne selling half the family silver – he’s on the team, and they can’t do it without him.

              • felix

                “Do you know who said this?”

                Lolz, I do. I don’t think Pete does though. (Hint for Petey – it wasn’t an MP)

                • Hint for felix – I copied that quote so it sort of follows that I’d know where it comes from. And yes, I do know Eddie isn’t an MP.

                  [lprent: I should hope not – I don’t allow sitting MP’s here unless they are on a clearly stated guest post – they have their own usual channels. The moderation difficulties from people on unrelated issues climbing on a soapbox in their posts are rather high. We can only give up the required amount of volunteered moderator time when it is important (like the leadership posts a few weeks ago). ]

                  • felix

                    You’re a dag Pete, but in the agricultural rather than the colloquial sense.

                    Anyone can scroll up and see what you were thinking. Lolz.

  4. logie97 4

    All-black jet thrills our world champions
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10774025

    “Players Kieran Read and Andy Ellis ceremonially led the one-of-a-kind Boeing 777-300ER aircraft out of Boeing’s paint hangar facility in Seattle on Friday night.
    Read said the plane looked “sensational” and would “really turn heads” at airports around the world.”

    Would have thought that Read would have been to enough international airports to know that, at most of them, “people” don’t get much of a chance to see other planes on the tarmac.

    By the way, given the current PM’s tendancy to make policy on the hoof, is this the next step in the black flag with a silver fern becoming our national flag by default?

  5. In Vino Veritas 5

    “operate in the interests of the elite”. Yes Jenny, the investors in South Canterbury finance that were the recipients of the bail out, would be the elite. Many of those people who were retired were the elite who’s taxes paid for say, the power stations National are privatising, many of the roads you drive on, the rail system throughout the country and the hospitals that have been built, amongst other things. Of course they are the “elite”. Methinks you wouldn’t know an “elite” if you fell over one.

    • kriswgtn 5.1

      hah but these elites as u put them wouldnt have BUILT them would they??? as in shovel and actual MANUAL work

      hell i seen donkey running with a football in his claws on tv last week
      what a try hard

      • Rob 5.1.1

        So when was the last time you used a spade in manual work Kris, and I am not talking about turning over your garden.

        Many people have been severly burnt by finance companies and most of these are people are joe average, noob.

        • Brett 5.1.1.1

          Yep you would be quite surprised how many of the investors were just average people who had come into a bit of money due to their Mum and Dad passing on.
          For example a truckie that I knew who was on the bones of his arse suddenly because $700k better off when his Mum died and her house was sold off.
          Thought he was being wise by investing in a finance company unfortunately as so many found out that wasn’t the case.
           

          • Colonial Viper 5.1.1.1.1

            Thought he was being wise by investing in a finance company unfortunately as so many found out that wasn’t the case.

            Greedy for returns more like, so greedy that he didn’t diversify his portfolio of $700K between banks and finance companies, or between different finance companies full stop.

            Any amounts invested over $250K should have received a 50% haircut. Your truckie example would have lost $225K of his $700K mal-investment.

            That would have protected the vast majority of mum and dad savers as well as the taxpayer, and given the capitalist speculators an education. It’s not real capitalism without real risks, after all.

        • kriswgtn 5.1.1.2

          I have worked all my life in manual labour mate as in farm work for Dept lands and surveys for 11 years,followed by manual labour in a glasshouse for quite a few years followed by commercial cleaning while i went to University

          it got to the point where no more so i got educated so blow that out yur ass

      • In Vino Veritas 5.1.2

        kris, as always, out of touch with reality. No, not all of them built the roads, though some of them probably did. They did drive the stock trucks, build houses, cut meat in a butchers, sweep the board at the freezing works, worked at the wharf, worked in shops, were nurses, teachers and served fish and chips, cleaned the local schools and offices, chiselled gravestones, laid carpet, tiled roof’s, and fixed cars, just to name a few.

        • kriswgtn 5.1.2.1

          so if they were so successful why bail them out?

          • In Vino Veritas 5.1.2.1.1

            For a university educated person, you really have no idea about followng a series of posts, have you kris? But then, one can get a degree in woman’s studies these days, so maybe I’m being a bit harsh.

            “I have worked all my life in manual labour mate as in farm work for Dept lands and surveys for 11 years,followed by manual labour in a glasshouse for quite a few years followed by commercial cleaning while i went to University

            it got to the point where no more so i got educated so blow that out yur ass”

            And for a university educated person, I’m not sure you can say “all my life” in one breath and then say you got educated and no more, since this would imply that you didnt work “all your life” as a labourer.

            • Colonial Viper 5.1.2.1.1.1

              Amounts invested over $250K should have been haircut by 50%. End of story. Protect small investors, protect the tax payer, and remind capitalist speculators that real capitalism involves real financial risks.

  6. Lanthanide 6

    One change I’d like to see in parliament is the abolishment of party leaders who hold single seats in parliament.

    Currently such people get a much larger salary due to their status, but really they’re not much more than independents when it comes to power in the house. I think instead of paying them an increased salary, they should get the same amount of money that any independent would be paid, and the difference between that and the a party leader salary go directly to the party for party development purposes. UF, ACT and Mana obviously need some party development and Jim Anderton’s Progressives could’ve used some too.

    • Ant 6.1

      According to Hone he got an extra 7k for being a party leader so he donated it to a food bank.

    • Draco T Bastard 6.2

      All MPs should be paid the same amount. There really is no reason to pay party leaders or ministers more.

  7. drongo 9

    The latest instalment from our fascist friends…under urgency, to boot. And they accuse Labour of creating a nanny state:

    http://www.networkonnet.co.nz/index.php?section=latest&id=372

  8. prism 10

    I’m listening to NinetoNoon with Kathryn Ryan talking about the committee on poverty to John Pagani (who has made some good points such as the problem of low wages and the working poor) and some woman who talks in that exasperated voice that middle class women often adopt when talking about people in need. Her answer to poverty is to get better housing that is warm and the children will be so much healthier and able to learn better. It’s the RMA and the new building regulations that are more stringent because of earthquake strengthening (and she unfortunately brought up the example of them affecting a new winery that could collapse and smash a wine barrel) and this is making housing too dear and people can’t get their own home which they can keep warm and that’s what is needed to solve our problems. (Also note the recent housing study that sees the problem of housing as bringing down the price of sections by councils increasing bare land zones to increase supply. So that speculators can snap it up and make good profits? Everybody should see the dreadfully designed ‘tract housing in South Auckland by the way. Truman had better.)

    Guess who – I’ve just checked – Deborah Coddington. What a pillock. Her approach reminds me of the tone that Muriel Newman once showed when talking knowledgably (hah) about Maori issues with two activists. ACT both aren’t they. Why is Deborah Coddington regarded as someone whose opinions are worth considering. Her approach is at a level that women in the coffee set would have if they ever tried to discuss politics.

    • Colonial Viper 10.1

      I think it was Deborah Coddington I heard on National Radio last week complaining about the rising cost of living and how things were getting so expensive.

      Her specific example was the cost of getting parts for her name brand Italian designed kitchen stove.

      Un-fucking-believable.

      • felix 10.1.1

        That’ll be her.

        Today she ejaculated the idea that the real root cause of poverty is that vineyards have to comply with the RMA and it’s too strict, especially after Christchurch.

        I Coddington you not.

        EDIT: hurr durr I didn’t see the prism’s comment above. Bad felix.

        • prism 10.1.1.1

          Felix – I guess that my comments are usually long and busy people like yourself have to skim them. I always try to bring in background and explain myself, probably to myself, and short summaries don’t do it for me. I’ll follow my own advice to others which is to paragraph more. Personally I find it easier to pick up the various threads of the comment then.

    • vto 10.2

      Cheaper housing would without doubt help many of the New Zealanders struggling with those things (lordy knows why i don’t count us in this group – typical medium class aspirans s’pose). And the RMA has diddly squat to do with it. neither does earthquake strengthening.

      There was far greater cost added by the New Zealand government to housing this year when the GST increase put the cost up by about $10,000 per house.

      Similarly, over the last handful of years, far greater cost has been added by local authorities to housing when their reserve and development contributions put the cost up by about $15,000 per house.

      There you go – with those two alone, both government, the cost has risen by $25,000.

      Now also, lets reverse those and go a bit further – knock the New Zealand government’s GST off new housing completely (like fruit and vege) and there is $60,000. And knock each local council’s reserve and development ‘contributions’ (tax) and there is another $25,000.

      There you go, with those two alone the cost can drop by $85,000.

      • Colonial Viper 10.2.1

        Government needs to be building 10,000 new houses a year itself.

        Remember, by taking the taxes off housing you’d be providing an effective tax payer subsidy to private industry. Instead of doing that you might as well build them yourself.

        • vto 10.2.1.1

          “Remember, by taking the taxes off housing you’d be providing an effective tax payer subsidy to private industry.”

          No that’s not the case. There would be a small windfall to some in the industry at the start point only but immediately after that the industry would find its standard profit margin level again, being probably New Zealand’s most mature and competitive industry, so there would be no greater profit margins than there are today. The effect however would be a significant drop in both the cost of new housing and the value of existing housing as a flow on effect.

          As for replacing the lost taxes – well that’s a political question. For example, should new housing for our families and people be taxed at the same rate as ferraris? Should newcomers to a region be required to pay upfront for the lifetime cost of the infrastructure associated with the house, or should it be spread across both the existing population and the future generations?

      • Draco T Bastard 10.2.2

        And watch as rates go up. Not that that can be stopped anyway as all the councils are going for more sprawl – the most expensive housing development available.

    • millsy 10.3

      The best thing to do to bring down house prices is to build more state (and council) housing. Way more elegant than a CGT.

      If we have more people going into state housing (with various mechanisms available for people to purchase their state house), there would be less people going into private rentals, especially those at the bottom end of society, and less demand for private rental leads to a fall in rents, and investors, in the face of falling returns, sell out (though I belive that the slum lords will be the ones selling out. The decent and more professional like landlords would probably stay in the market).

  9. joe90 11

    RIP Vaclav Havel, leader of the Czechoslovakia’s “velvet revolution”.


    Even a purely moral act that has no hope of any immediate and visible political effect can gradually and indirectly, over time, gain in political significance.

    Letter to Czechoslovak Communist Party chairman Alexander Dubček (August 1969)

  10. logie97 12

    http://www.3news.co.nz/John-Key-and-his-vineyard-investments/tabid/1382/articleID/157713/Default.aspx

    See the PM appeared to be pushing his tipple on Breakfast this morning.

    http://tvnz.co.nz/politics-news/52-000-bottle-pm-s-wine-dropped-in-carpark-4662186

    He also still appears a bit miffed that McCaw didn’t accept the Prime Minister’s offer of a knighthood.

    • Ianupnorth 12.1

      Saw that –

      “Oh my wine makes lots of money for charity”

      and

      Are you going on holiday?

      reply
       

      Yes the usual place….

       
      Funny, never seen during the election campaign,  now never out of the media spotlight.

  11. Jackal 13

    Decriminalizing marijuana

    I realize that this post is somewhat redundant, being that John Key has said marijuana will not be decriminalized while he is Prime Minister. This position is somewhat idiotic… especially when you consider the following evidence concerning the overal benefits to society decriminalization would facilitate…

  12. gingercrush 14

    Labour’s lineup has been announced.

    The front bench line up is Mr Shearer, Grant Robertson, David Parker (Finance), Jacinda Ardern (Social Development), David Cunliffe (Economic Development), Clayton Cosgrove (State Owned Enterprises and Commerce), Shane Jones (Regional Development, Fisheries), Nanaia Mahuta (Education). – c/p from NZ Herald.

    Five don’t hold electorate seats. One won his electorate but saw the party vote fall behind the Greens.

    Clayton Cosgrove and Shane Jones? Seriously? I don’t get the Labour party sometimes.

  13. joe90 15

    An interview with anthropologist David Graeber, the author of Debt: The First 5000 Years.

    Helps if I post on the right page.

  14. McFlock 16

    So – John Key replaced a bottle of his brand of wine when the person who bought it for charity accidentally dropped it. Good on him.

    A very good trick, seeing as Key hasn’t included vintners or vinyards in this year’s register of pecuniary interests.
     
    Sound familiar? Well, it was previously mentioned in the standard here and here.
     
    I guess a blind trust with partial sight was deemed to be fine.

  15. prism 17

    Someone’s salary being talked about on radio this a.m. went up from $470,000 p.a. to $520,000 or near. We are in a recession aren’t we? Even if it was overseas they are in a recession – everyone is.

    My relative doing essential IT work got a 1.5% rise. I wonder where this guy (presumably) lives? Perhaps I can line the road as his limo passes and he can toss bread to myself and other lower classes like Emperior Selassie used to in Ethiopia. Or perhaps he can buy bags of wheat and trickle down the contents out of the window so we can gather it off the road then make our own bread or feed it to our hens.

    • Colonial Viper 17.1

      The top 0.1% get pay increases in line with the increase in money supply.

      None of this CPI/inflation matched crap the rest of us are lucky to even get.

    • fender 17.2

      The guy is the CEO of Chch council.

      Couldn’t let the top dogs suffer like the munted general public now could we.

      • vto 17.2.1

        It’s worse than that… his pay has risen 45% in four years, the time he has been in office.

        And worse again because it is justified by the mayor through “that’s what all ceo’s get. Haven’t you seen how much their pay rates climb? Well, so should his.” True dinks.

        • prism 17.2.1.1

          vto
          Wasn’t Bob Parker actually demanding that this man get the position – a favourite of his and threatening to stand down otherwise? If so it smacks of USA croneyism where the newly elected bring in their own people for each job manager. I don’t know why Chch didn’t stick to Jim Anderton he would have been excellent. I have a feeling that Chch is too toffy nosed and NACT so always tend to slide to the blue direction.

          • millsy 17.2.1.1.1

            Anderton would have made a brilliant Christchurch Mayor — probably would have redeemed his part in destroying the Alliance.

            But I guess the tectonic plates had other ideas :-)

            IMO Council CEO’s should be appointed in a transparent manner, perhaps elected by the council concerned…

          • vto 17.2.1.1.2

            Yes prism, it’s all over the Press this morning. Not a single person in support except the mayor and deputy. Parker has made yet another political blue. He only became mayor again because ofthe September earthquake – otherwise Jim Anderton was about to fly in. And no, Chch sin’t that blue. Mostly red. Bits of blue in the leafy parts.

            Big fail on Parker’s part.

        • Armchair Critic 17.2.1.2

          Is this the same bloke that helped Hamilton win the V8 racing?

    • PricklyJill 17.3

      What’s worse is that the person you’re talking about is the Christchurch Council CEO! Disgusting!

  16. The Voice of Reason 18

    North Korea’s glorious leader, Kim Jong Il, has died. State TV reported that he succumbed to physical and mental over-work. No, really. It wasn’t his addiction to whiskey, cigars and porn, it was over-work. Honest.

    • Tiger Mountain 18.1

      One ‘Dear Leader’ down, one to go. Obviously Kim and ShonKey are majorly dissimilar, bar both having an official “ministry of truth” style media bubble and living luxurious insulated lifestyles unlike many of their citizens.

    • millsy 18.2

      Hopefully this will spell the end of the communist dictatorship in North Korea and open the door to reunification.

      If the North Korean generals had any guts, they would launch a coup, take over and open a full dialog with the West (and South), with a view to reunification.

  17. Bafacu 19

    Really looking forward to seeing how Comrade Jacinda gets on in her new role!!!!! What the hell has she ever done to become #4 in the pecking order?

    • vto 19.1

      Yes big advancement. Fair question – is it on merit or on being gorgeous? Either one will do.

      Good question for the pctorians.

  18. vto 20

    BNZ head of research Stephen Toplis is headlined today on Stuff about the NZ economy.

    Firstly, does anyone see the backwards nonsense in having someone so knottedly conflicted to comment on the economy? Ask yourself what is in the best interests of BNZ. How can he possibly be independent and given credence?

    And secondly, in spite of Toplis’s position which must include the obligation to never ever talk down anything that may affect BNZ’s position, he says this at the end…”we cling to our view that the New Zealand economy can continue to fumble its way ahead, albeit that the task is becoming more difficult by the day”

    cling … fumble … more difficult …

    the writing is on the wall and even the local banksters are struggling to keep a straight face.

    2012.

    it’s all on.

    • Colonial Viper 20.1

      Fact of the matter is that the academic economics profession has sold out to a dangerous mix of sloppy intellectualism and its corporate sponsors.

      Corporate media only give airtime to ‘approved’ orthodox economics commentators, and economics departments excel in wallowing in the types of orthodox neoliberal theories which big corporate sponsors and employers will approve of.

      I remain a big fan of Steve Keen (google his blog debtdeflation). His latest published paper is excellent and smashes the neoliberal macroeconomics that so many still crow about as being our path to salvation (while quietly ignoring that it is the path we followed to bring us to this unhappy place).

      The paper can be found here:

      http://www.eap-journal.com/archive/v41_i3_01-keen.pdf

  19. Jum 21

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/BU1112/S00685/virtual-business-protest-over-port-strikes-attracts-700.htm

    And just when you thought people had some semblance of integrity we have the ‘virtual’ protest action – how pathetic.

    When those people actually front up to the Ports of auckland, check out the work, talk to the people as to why they are protesting, why the SOE has them on lockout by Ports of Auckland which Key’s government has been lining our asset up for asset sale to foreigners well before the work action, then they may have some semblance of gravitas – otherwise piss off you wankers.

  20. aj 22

    I have never seen a tax cut put out a fire. I have never seen a tax cut build a bridge or clean up toxic atmosphere.

    Barney Frank, The Great American Debates: ‘There’s Too Much Government In My Life’

  21. John D 23

    The CEO of Christchurch City Council has been awarded a $68,000 pay rise.

    That should go down well with those paying double rates because they can’t live in their own homes.

    • Colonial Viper 23.1

      Look mate, all the CEO has to do is fire two labouring or minimum wage positions at the Council and he’ll have covered off his own payrise.

      Problem solved.

      • John D 23.1.1

        Actually, I figured he could sell one of those JK bottles of wine. That should almost cover his pay rise.

        • fender 23.1.1.1

          My bet is it would taste like weasels piss and I’d not drink any of it, just like I can’t stomach his ancient policies.

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