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Out of order

Written By: - Date published: 10:19 am, June 4th, 2012 - 78 comments
Categories: class - Tags: ,

I’m not a big fan of the whole honours system, with or without knighthoods. But if you’re going to have it, make it mean something. Giving the top gong, which only 20 living people can have, to a guy whose claim to fame is marrying his second cousin and then acting like the stereotype of the elitist buffoon for 60 years is an insult to everyone who has ever earned an honour.

Oh, and good on I/S at NoRightTurn for not playing along and shutting up about who was getting the gongs after the Cabinet Office accidentally put them online early. The msm all kept mum – for no good reason that I can see, certainly nothing to do with good journalism – while I/S reported it all, despite a phone call from the Cabinet Office asking him to please be quiet.

78 comments on “Out of order”

  1. Judge Holden 1

    Giving one to Bazley for being really well paid to do her job for several decades is almost as bad.

  2. Carol 2

    I’m disgusted at this, specifically NZ honour, being given to Prance Fullup, who, as far as NZ is concerned has largely been MIA in the last 50 years.

    WHY!??

    I saw some headlines online with John Key apparently explaining why…. I’m not clicking on the article – no support for all these royal sycophantic articles in the MSM at the moment.

    Was it JohnKey’s idea to give the Prance this “honour”?

    • just saying 2.1

      Why?,
      Because some journo overseas is bound to ask the silly old coot how he feels about being named as one of Nz’s 20 greatest NZanders, and any publicity is apparently good publicity for NZCorp.
      Also, the Nats love to suck up to Royalty.
      win/win

      • prism 2.1.1

        just saying
        Key might be more devious than you thought. He might be thinking of a return on favours bestowed. Royal visits – we have Charles and Camilla in November I think. But the Queen might like to holiday at his house in Hawaii or in the wing of some friend’s mansion on a high point overlooking the sea and away from earthquakes. He could come and make some controversial comment about our quaintness etc. and get us media attention that will last and last.

        .Also the Royals have a lot of dosh and don’t bet on finance companies I should think. Perhaps we could tap him for a a quid or hundred.

        And the NACTs don’t save themselves just for the UK they also favour the USA with their attentions. Seems they like initials – I wonder when they will honour NZ with their attention.

      • Pink postman 2.1.2

        Dead right Just S,I bet Key will be bend down to his knees with the Queen . It will be an embarrassment to watch. I wonder how long it will be before he gets a Knighthood. ? What a farce it is. Im also sorry that Michael Cullen, a man I admire, has let the side down At least his wife has voiced her disproval .

        • McFlock 2.1.2.1

          Actually, that might be another reason key might not see the term out – the last thing on his “Presents from NZ People” bucket list will be an honour of some sort. I’m not sure he can rely on Lab6/Green1 delivering him that.

      • mike e 2.1.3

        Keys only chance to get a knighthood

    • Dr Terry 2.2

      Carol, of course it was! John Key personally reinstated all these specious “honours”! Cullen has happily accepted a Key knighthood (likely to turn off still more Labour voters!) Worse still are Cullen’s self-righteous denials reported in the Herald.
      I note that even a psychologist cannot resist the worn out cliche that his “honour” is “humbling” – I wonder if he could do with some personal analysis? Another recipient is unable to prevent herself assuring us that the “honour” is really for others (again, the ever repeated cliche.) Anyone worthy of Key’s awards might at least offer intelligent (even wise?) remarks (hardly possible,I guess). I am pleased to know that some people have been big enough to decline an “honour”, such as Lange and Bolger.

  3. The msm all kept mum – for no good reason that I can see, certainly nothing to do with good journalism

    Its quite understandable. They had agreed to an embargo, and weren’t going to endanger their future early receipt of such information (which allows them to prep stories in advance) simply because it was now public on the web.

  4. bbfloyd 4

    well, it’s official now….. there is no barrier low enough to stop johnny sparkles exorcising his talent for being utterly obsequious to people who he perceives as being useful to him…..

    this embarrassing decision marks the point where we have signaled the final departure from our previously respected position in world politics, into complete capitulation to the boardrooms of corporate earth….

    if this is allowed to stand…. there is going to be a rush to take australian citizenship among those already driven away…. who the hell wants to be associated with a country who’s leadership leads by the tongue?

    i feel nothing but disgust…… and i can report that i’m a long way from being alone on that score…

  5. Ad 5

    It was for Services to Comedy.

    Cullen totally deserves it – one of the very few who had a real tilt at changing the course of the country, and did it.

    Wonder when the Maori King will generate this kind of scrutiny. Utter self-reifying bullshit ripe for eradication.

    • prism 5.1

      Ad
      For goodness sake – don’t take rude swipes at the Maori king. If you want to pick on leaders that you don’t consider are performing well there are plenty without pecking away at the person and the position that mean much to Maori. It is for them to decide whether their leader is worthy of their respect.

      • Ad 5.1.1

        Pop down to Henderson or Kaikohe and do a vox pop on that premise. If this site is prepared to swing at the monarchy overseas, it can stand up to local scrutiny as well.

        • prism 5.1.1.1

          Ad
          But the monarchy overseas is so wealthy and long-founded with the support of the top people in the UK. It is a different thing taking pot shots at a local leader. Have respect for Maori tradition. Each leader faces different problems but will be a point for most to combine with. And the Maori King is centred in Waikato isn’t he. Ngapuhi up north have a long background of stroppiness.

  6. ghostwhowalksnz 6

    Notice how the gongs for “services to business” stop after 2nd tier honours!
    Im very surprised at a husband and wife are honoured simultaneously, the Normans, who have the country’s biggest privately owned retail empire – Farmers, Whitcoulls, Pascoes.
    No doubt they were big donors to the National party

  7. deemac 7

    praps Phil is being honoured for NOT visiting NZ more often? we should be thankful for small mercies!

    • Jackal 7.1

      He’s probably being honoured co’s his missis is worth £17 Trillion and doesn’t pay any taxes. The £32 million for the jubilee was also paid for by the people… so surely they deserve a meaningless award given to those at the pinacle of capitalist excess.

  8. Nick 8

    Honours shouldn’t be for doing your normal job – though most of them seem to be.

    I’m not a fan of knighthoods but pleased to see that JK’s honour includes services to mental health, not just services to rugby for a coach and former player. There a lot of people on the list that are there just for doing their job (even if they did it well). Something above and beyond requires recognition, otherwise – no.

    • Ad 8.1

      +1 for Kirwan. And for all his tries in the first Rugby World Cup.

      • Bored 8.1.1

        Agreed, sure he wonders what the fuss is about: he woulld have done what he did anyay. Lets have him for AB coach, comes complete with Sir prior to any cup win.

    • higherstandard 8.2

      People like John Kirwan should be what the honours list are all about.

    • tracey 8.3

      Agree

      The business couple had nothing about community support/work in their blurb just business success. Good on them for their success, and that success has been rewarded with wealth. Frankly Helen was right to abolish the old system.

      Those who say “we have to have Sir and Dame” otherwise how will we know that someone has been honoured, I say, how do we know who the majority of those honoured are? We don’t and yet they have often served far more selflessly than those who have made money.

      Our PM has totally revealled himself as a jockstrap sniffing, celebrity chaser in hi appointment of Prince Philip as a greatest living NZer. He dishonours all the great efforts of thousands of NZers.

  9. Rodel 9

    So disappointed in Cullen. When Helen was asked if she’d accept similar she scoffed, ‘of course not.’
    What’s the opposite of integrity?

  10. Bored 10

    The hole thing is a load of bollocks, regardless of whether its some trashy right wing mate of Shonkeys like Bazley, or whether its a Hero of the Soviet Union for shovelling coal. Complete crap.

    I note John Kirwan was already a highly respected person by dint of public opinion for his good works prior to this: he will remain such regardless and that is the greater acclaim, our earned respect annd gratitude. He is one of us, not apart on a higher plane, no gong required. On the converse we see the Sainted Peter Jackson, taker of our tax funding and betrayer of workers rights…..setting himself aside from the rest, with a gong.

  11. Someone, I think it was Johnny Rotton, described the Monarchy as the biggest social welfare bludgers in the world. The sooner we get rid of the monarchy as an institution the better. We also do not need Govenors General, the Chief Justice could rule on who wins elections. Think of all the money we could save. We would no longer have to savage average class sizes …

    • higherstandard 11.1

      What drivel Greg

      If we ‘got rid of the monarchy’ we’d likely replace the HoS with a presidential type position which would be filled by some local felchtard politician who would both cost a fortune and be an unmitigated twat.

      • Colonial Viper 11.1.1

        Then Key could put them on the Honours list.

      • Vicky32 11.1.2

        If we ‘got rid of the monarchy’ we’d likely replace the HoS with a presidential type position which would be filled by some local felchtard politician who would both cost a fortune and be an unmitigated twat.

        Sad but true!

        • Rodel 11.1.2.1

          Please..could some one explain why when we vote in 120 highly paid politicians do we need a ‘ head of state, GG, president or any sort of artificial so called leader?

          I’m sort of happy with elected politicians, national and local, reluctantly accepting but not enthralled with Johnny sparkles as p.m.(For god’s sake someone give him his precious night hood.. sorry that’s knighthood)…someone has to manage or govern affairs of the state__ but why oh why do we need a head of state, especially an unelected one? These people are so expensive with their residences, gardeners, drivers, housemaids, banquets and so on …and for what return?

          I’d like to be convinced by any reasoned logic why we as an independent nation need a concept such as this in the 21st century.

          • rosy 11.1.2.1.1

            Sorry, Rodel, I can’t give you any reasoned logic as to why we’d need an unelected head of state. We might need a position to run checks and balances on parliamentary democracy, but I don’t think that role should necessarily be a Head of State.

          • Matthew Whitehead 11.1.2.1.2

            In principle or in practice?

            In practice, the Governor General does two important things: Separates the head of state from the head of government, removing the pressure for the PM to preside over events of official significance, and maintains the reserve power to dissolve parliament and call a new election in cases of constitutional crisis. Some people will argue that the governor general can also act as a safeguard and refuse to sign laws, but legally speaking I don’t think that’s actually very correct, and if we wanted that sort of safeguard, the better way to do it would be to make BORA sovereign over Parliament, meaning that the courts could strike down laws that aren’t consistent with it.

            In principle, the governor general also signs laws into effect and a few other things, but these functions are relatively unimportant and could be reformed out of our constitutional conventions, and just have parliament state when laws take effect, perhaps after a certain minimum window to allow for publication and, if necessary, publicity.

            Both of the practical reasons are decent justification to keep the office. If we want to we can also reform it to move some power away from the executive or parliament as a constitutional safeguard, especially as Ministers have a very large amount of power in our government at the moment.

        • Actually many republicans would be quite happy with an appointed Governor General, if the power of appointment was moved to a super-majority vote of parliament.

          Also, the Governor General’s residence, and many of their activities, already cost a significant amount. Selecting that person ourselves wouldn’t add much to the bill, (especially if we let our representatives choose for us) and public accountability could help them use that budget a little more wisely.

          • Rodel 11.1.2.2.1

            Thankyou. I’m see the reasoning but am unconvinced by your first reply but convinced by your second.

      • tracey 11.1.3

        I’m pretty sure the hosting nation spends millions hosting a royal visit.

    • Ad 11.2

      Well Mickey, once we sent them to the Great Beige Rest Home In The Sky, would you just have a Prime Minister, or would you like president as well? Would be useful to have a check-and-balance against a Prime Minister Hide, no? And would you like the weak Israeli or German option, or something stiffer like say Venezuela?

      • mickysavage 11.2.1

        Neither ad.

        The three roles of the GG are to:

        1.  Decide who won the election
        2.  Give the royal assent to legislation
        3.  Turn up at various dos and show the flag.

        We could:

        1.  Let the Chief Justice decide who won.
        2.  Let Parliament itself decide when its legislation is coming into force.
        3.  Use anyone else, Mayors, local body politicians, Ministers, ex all blacks do this work.

        You do not need a person at the head of the pyramid. 

        • Pete George 11.2.1.1

          I fully support what you’re saying on this.

          It’s time we stood on our own as a country, in a practical sense we do that already, it’s just the old pointless figurehead thing from the other side of the world that we haven’t let go of yet. And while we did manage to let go of an archaic “honours” system it boomeranged back.

          • ochocinco 11.2.1.1.1

            Why?
            If we stand on our own, what do we have?
            If we are part of the Commonwealth, we (1) express our appreciation for the Brits who forged us into a country in the 19th century, and (2) retain our lineage through the British family back to the glories of the Reform Act, Waterloo, Magna Carta, Crecy, the laws of Alfred the Great, and perhaps even through the Romano-British back to the very first flowering of Western civilisation.

            • Draco T Bastard 11.2.1.1.1.1

              1.) There was a country here before the Brits turned up
              2.) Not all of us have British lineage or give a fuck about it if we do
              3.) All that history will still be there to be learned from without having to be part of the Commonwealth

            • lprent 11.2.1.1.1.2

              express our appreciation for the Brits who forged us into a country

              Piss off. There are bugger all english in my heritage and very few who’d have considered themselves to be ‘british’. It is only the bloody english who think that and usually only when they’re hammering out some rebellion in scotland, the midlands, wales, cornwell, or ireland. Many of my ancestors both eurpean and maori were here long before the idiot englsh. We built this frigging country despite much of the interference from the bloody english like Hobson, Grey and the idiotic governers of the 19th.

              Screw the English and their ‘british’ myth.

              • Socialist Paddy

                Aye

                The English did not do a thing except terrorise ordinary people who came here from the Ununited Kingdom to get away from the bastards. And they claimed all of the credit for everything that ordinary working people achieved when they got over here.

                The Monarchy and their sycophantic arse kissing supporters have nothing to claim credit for. If those bastards were not on the backs of ordinary working people so much more could be achieved.

                And just ask Tangata Whenua what they think of the gob shyte bastards who ripped them off the same way they ripped the Irish and the Scots and the Welsh off.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  And just ask Tangata Whenua what they think of the gob shyte bastards who ripped them off the same way they ripped the Irish and the Scots and the Welsh off.

                  Yep, a lot of history of England is about them ripping others off – usually at gun point and then declaring themselves great and civilised.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    That’s how empire works. Conquer new territories and new resources, exploit the peripheries to the maximum, pumping wealth out of them back for the benefit of the glorious imperial centre.

                • The first people to be colonised by the English nobility/elite were the English peasantry. They were dispossessed from their land, their cultural practices were outlawed, they were starved, regularly raped and murdered and generally treated like animals.

                  It was only on the basis of a thoroughly exploited and oppressed domestic population that they were then able to move on to the second phase of colonisation (‘press-ganging’ being one of the typical ways to ‘recruit’ English youth for their role as global oppressors).

                  The English elite learnt their craft on my ancestors (all of whom are English so far as I’m aware – as I am) and continue to practice it on my relations to this day (in a late capitalist kind of way, of course).

                  While many of the Scots and Irish (and Cornish – or is that ‘English’?) who migrated here were grasping (quite rightly) the opportunity to themselves become part of the elite here, my grandfather, as a child, was part of a transient, agricultural labouring family in England, getting work where they could and spending time in the poorhouse/workhouse when they couldn’t.

                  And, btw, many Scots did quite well out of the ‘British’ Empire

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    And, btw, many Scots did quite well out of the ‘British’ Empire.

                    Empires have always found it a good idea to enlist some of the locals in the oppression of other locals.

                    • From the link:

                      In Canada, Lord Mount Stephen was behind the creation of the great Canadian Pacific Railway, and other Scotsmen dominated the economy to the extent that one-third of the country’s business elite were of Scottish origin.” 
                      And;

                      The Scottish presence was also strongly evident in India. When Henry Dundas became President of the Board of Control in 1784 he ‘Scoticised’ India and through his agencies Scots came to dominate the activities of the East India Company (EIC) …
                      The first three Governor-Generals of India were Scots. Vast fortunes were made by imperial administrators and entrepreneurs.

                      And;

                      Seven of the 12 viceroys were Scottish and many Scots served as judges, district commissioners, and so on … Ceylon became synonymous with tea, a product developed by James Taylor but brought to world renown by the Glasgow businessman, Sir Thomas Lipton.

                       … Practically all the railway engines in India were built in Springburn in Glasgow. The east of Scotland was also strongly linked economically through the jute trade. Dundee became the centre of jute making in the world and the Camperdown works of the Baxter Brothers the largest mill in the world.

                      And;

                      The Scots were at the forefront of this assault on native peoples, showing themselves to be as ruthless as any other ethnic group when it came to land grabbing. This was also true in New Zealand, where the Maori population fell from around 150,000 in 1800 to 37,000 in 1872 as a result of a protracted struggle with the settlers over land rights.” 

                      While it is true that “It was English laws and civil institutions that the Scot was to uphold and live by“, Scots were not just passive locals ‘enlisted’ to oppress other locals – they were doing much of the ‘enlisting’ and were benefiting, as an elite, often to a far greater extent than local, English (and Irish) ‘enlistees’.

                      But my point is not to claim that ‘Scots were as bad as the English’.

                      It’s to point out that the pillage – which was the British Empire – wasn’t about nationality, despite all the moronic rhetoric about ‘Britishness’ or ‘Englishness’ and despite all the chinless, plummy voiced poseurs who liked to claim it was.

                      It was about what happens when concentrated power meets opportunity. 

                    • Vicky32

                      And, btw, many Scots did quite well out of the ‘British’ Empire.

                      Very true! Especially in New Zealand. It enrages me to hear the Scots-descended majority self-righteously baiting and abusing the English.

              • Vicky32

                Screw the English and their ‘british’ myth.

                Gee, thanks, as the Americans say “a whole bunch’. Not all of we English promote any ‘British myth’.
                I was surprised to learn from Gordon McLauchlan and the Herald, in that order, that 2/3rds of New Zealanders are of Scottish descent. That news explained why my sisters and I were screeched at when we started primary school to “get back to Pongolia” (and that was mild!) Battle of Culloden – it was bad enough having my Scottish descended mother re-fighting it with my English father every night, flinging his dinner at him when she felt like it… but to have a lifetime in freezing, unwelcoming New Zealand, being told to ‘sod off back to’ a place I have never been (only the middle classes get to do ‘their OE’, btw), is one life time too bloody many…

                • Draco T Bastard

                  Well then, I suspect you’re not one of the “English and their ‘british’ myth” and can probably ignore that line.

            • rosy 11.2.1.1.1.3

              Part of commonwealth doesn’t mean having the queen as head of state – India is a republic with a president as head of state and is a member of the commonwealth.

              As for how important the Commonwealth is? If the official flag hoisting is any indication in the jubilee overload is any indication, it’s not important at all. I don’t know what coverage is like in NZ (maybe they trawl through hours of footage for the seconds that are relevant to NZ), but on SkyNews UK and the BBC Commonwealth countries are severely under-represented in their head of state’s jubilee celebrations.

          • Draco T Bastard 11.2.1.1.2

            And while we did manage to let go of an archaic “honours” system it boomeranged back.

            Yep, sure did, as soon as we got the authoritarians back in power.

        • Ad 11.2.1.2

          Check out Bowalley Road, Mickey.
          He just lets loose on the monarchy like a pit bull in a meat truck.

        • Actually, I really disagree with point (3), as it puts increased pressure on our political leaders to show up at waste-of-time, or prestigious-but-distracting events. I’d rather we had a nominal head of state to do those things, and for official, ceremonial respect for events and functions, and have the head of government do the serious stuff. Sending an ex-All Black to represent us at the Olympic Games doesn’t really have the same gravitas as sending the head of state.

          • Murray Olsen 11.2.1.3.1

            If we are indeed represented at the Olympic Games, it’s by our sportspeople, not some outdated relic of the days when we were a Pacific outpost of Mother England. I’m always amused that the same idiots who screeched “Politics has no place in sport!” in defence of their bonding sessions with the Boers, are all too happy to accept corporate seats and junkets to sporting events purely on the basis that they are politicians.
            Queenie and Princie are hideous relics and the sooner we step out from under their shadows the better.

            • Puddleglum 11.2.1.3.1.1

              Queenie and Princie are hideous relics and the sooner we step out from under their shadows the better.

              Exactly.  I wouldn’t put it so personally though. Elizabeth and Philip are products of a warped social structure that is long since past its use by date – if it ever had any legitimacy to begin with. Yet, there but for the grace of God …

              There was a good piece in Monday’s The Press lifted from a Times columnist, Philip Collins, titled ‘Pity the Poor Republican’. Unfortunately, being from The Times I can’t link directly to it (I don’t think). It began like this:

              It was the prime minister (David Cameron) who made me crack. ‘‘My weekly hour with the Queen is vital because I get to draw on all those qualities; her knowledge, her commitment, her time-tested wisdom,’’ he crawled, Uriah Heeping on the praise. ‘‘Above all she has an abundance of what I’d call great British common sense . . .’’ Oh come on, man, pull yourself together. You’re the prime minister, for goodness sake. There’s no need to abase yourself.” 

              It got better.
               

              • Carol

                But the fact that public school boy Cameron, values her, shows how the aristocratic structure is still pretty much in place.

                • Yes, aristocratic ‘cache’ is still leveraged by the ‘aspiring elite’. 

                  Which is one reason why I oppose honours.

                  • Carol

                    Yes, aristocratic ‘cache’ is still leveraged by the ‘aspiring elite’.

                    caché?

                    indeed. T’is why our dear leader likes to front up to royal events, event though he prefers aligning himself with the US moneyed classes.

                    He probably hopes some of the born-to-rule caché of the Brit aristocracy will rub off on him, and reassure him that he deserves such status himself.

                    • Vicky32

                      caché?

                      No, it’s cachet! 🙂

                      (BTW, what’s happened to the reply box? One can’t quote properly..)

  12. Tiger Mountain 12

    sod ’em, the “cuddlie wuddlie” ‘they’re not so bad factor’ is increasingly coming to apply to Queenie.
    Queenie was right up Thachter, Reagan and Pinochets rear ends, not to mention H Block. Rotten in all his idiocy got it right in that infamous pistols song, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yqrAPOZxgzU&feature=list_related&playnext=1&list=AL94UKMTqg-9BnZU2mQgFtaBXiMsyTmGaX

    and Motorheads Lemmys lite version is pretty good too because the engaged a Liz impersonator.
    http://www.facebook.com/l.php?u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.youtube.com%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DsnyjRd93HBs%26ob%3Dav2e&h=wAQHMNzP4AQEJEL8SAL4b3aFuTGHWl5vZZQEMUTnl5yDk4Q&enc=AZOJFg8lpxVLNCIsKYHL8e72hqC_MQJuXltzYZt2-Z3WO3jzSk4veKMEuRCTtdzFDFNamPgEzYnHRbgJqXnyppV4

  13. ochocinco 13

    I have no issue with Prince Phillip getting a gong.

    However, Rod Deane? For what? Destroying thousands of lives by cutting costs and sacking people?

    • Colonial Viper 13.1

      Deserves the Highest Tory Honours, in other words.

      • ochocinco 13.1.1

        You keep associating “Tory” with “neo-liberalism”. It’s disturbing. No conservative worth his/her salt would ever align themselves with the sort of Rogernomics practised by Deane and co.

        • Colonial Viper 13.1.1.1

          Yeah that’s a fair call.

          Its a shame that the National Party has long been run by the neoliberals. And its a shame that old fashioned rural conservatives still vote for them despite that.

        • Draco T Bastard 13.1.1.2

          The other name for neo-liberalism is neo-classical and conservatives were all for classical economics. Then the Great Depression happened, the conservatives were voted out, Keynesianism was voted in and then conservatives became hardened Keynesians. When that got voted out they changed spots again and went for the new economics.

          The only thing that conservatives are for is increasing their own wealth and power. If that requires firing people and cutting costs then so be it.

  14. captain hook 14

    journalist: how do you like new zealand?
    spike milligan: boiled with chips!
    coming up…

  15. Dv 15

    Weldo got one foor his money raing for chch from rich lsters.
    DOES ANY ONE know how he raised?

    Did the guy who organised the student army get one?

  16. GregJ 16

    Hmmm – I don’t know – seems appropriate that something as antiquated and anachronistic as an honours system should award something to Prince Philip who is, after all, antiquated and anachronistic.

    It does seem at times that many of the “higher level” honours with whatever Government is in power appear to be a pay off to supporters or fellow travellers – I think Napoleon was reputed to have said when there was egalitarian criticism of the Légion d’honneur – “With such baubles, you lead men.”

    Do we have a clear idea of what the fundamental purpose of an honours system is in a modern age?

    • Ideally, to recognize excellence in a field of national significance, and bring publicity to the work of such leaders.

      Honestly, if we stopped giving them to civil servants for just doing their jobs, (which admittedly aren’t easy) I’d say they’re fine. I don’t think the honours system should be tied to the monarchy, but I think the idea in general is fine.

  17. Draco T Bastard 17

    This is kinda on topic

    But the most interesting thing of all about Game of Thrones is what you get when you strip away the blood and tits and get to the bare narrative bones under all that greasy meat. I’m talking about the basic story of the whole saga. I’m talking about one of the oldest stories of all, a story with the power to draw millions of us around the flatscreen just as our notional ancestors gathered around the hearths. I’m talking about The Search For The Good Ruler.

    Yep, it’s a review of The Game of Thrones but the story we see in this fictional narrative (and a lot of other fictional narratives as well for that matter) is exactly what’s being played out now in the honours system. After a few centuries of the declining power and relevance of the monarchy people now seem to grasping for a dictator to set things right again and thus they will be searching for The Good Ruler and this hoopla of honours is, IMO, part of that search.

  18. tracey 18

    IF the honours system honoured genuinely altruistic people it does send a message to an increasingly mean society that there is worth/value/respect in acting unselfishly.

    I have attended a few honours ceremonies, and frankly the system is upside down. The closer you get to the very highest honours the more the people are rewarded for a career or sporting involvement rather than their unselfish giving to society. The lower down the awards you can be overcome by the incredible time and hard work fellow j kiwis put in for no pay, no reward and simply because they want to help others.

    Being a sportsperson and representing your country is reward in itself, if it is a professional sport you got paid. JK at least has done great and selfless and non paying work for mental health, a significant issue in NZ.

    The important message of the honours must be selflessness, not a further message that if you become a famous person or make millions that’s enough for you to be top of the pile of those who should be respected.

    John Key’s appointment of PP to status of greatest living NZer says an awful lot more about our PM’s priorities than I ever could.

  19. Draco T Bastard 19

    The poll for the award given to prince philip isn’t looking too good.

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  • Saudi sheep deal still stinks
    Documents released today confirm Treasury were not aware of any threat of legal action from a Saudi businessman to justify the Government handing over millions of dollars in taxpayers’ money, Labour MP David Parker says. “Almost $12 million has been ...
    2 days ago
  • Assaults up over the past year
    The Government needs to take a good look at the latest statistics  out today from the Statistics Department that shows there were 3,000 more assaults in 2015-16 than the previous year, says Labour’s Police spokesperson Stuart Nash.  “That  is a ...
    2 days ago
  • More last minute policy from a Government with no housing plan
    Paula Bennett’s policy to fund $9 million worth of support services is much-needed help for the homeless but smacks of yet another last minute, short-sighted and piecemeal decision, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. “Funding services for two years ...
    2 days ago
  • SFO given more info on ex Ministry staffer
    More information on the background and past activities of a former senior Ministry of Transport manager, being investigated for alleged fraud, is coming to light, Labour’s Transport Spokesperson Sue Moroney says. “Today, I have ensured that information on Joanne Harrison’s ...
    2 days ago
  • Petition for free vote on Shop Trading Hours Bill
    “Labour is petitioning the Government to allow National Party MPs to have a free vote over Easter shop trading legislation, says Pacific Island Affairs spokesperson Su’a William Sio.  “The Bill which allows shop trading on Easter Sundays has just had ...
    3 days ago
  • Council must build on heritage, not destroy it
    Auckland Council must move to ensure there are heritage protections in place following recommendations that demolition restrictions be tossed out, Labour’s Arts, Culture and Heritage spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. The panel considering the Unitary Plan has recommended removing partial protections ...
    3 days ago
  • Numbers of Māori waiting for homes grows
    With the number of Māori households waiting for homes increasing by more than 20 per cent in the past year, it’s time the Māori Party admits its support of the Government’s state house sell-off has made life worse for whānau, ...
    3 days ago
  • Children’s ministry, but only for some
    The Government is stigmatising a whole cohort of young New Zealanders while leaving others behind with its creation of a Ministry for Vulnerable Children, Labour’s Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. “Confirmation of the move by Hekia Parata, an acting Minister, ...
    3 days ago
  • QUESTIONS FOR (ORAL) ANSWER – Thursday 28TH OF JULY
    While Parliament might be in recess, there are still plenty of things that Ministers need to answer for. So the Labour team has put together six of the best questions that the Government should be answering today (plus a special ...
    3 days ago
  • Fee fi fo fum…tax swindle comes undone
    At the same time the Government is looking to pump more cash into private schools the IRD is investigating several over a tax swindle which allows parents to falsely claim private school fees as donations and claim a rebate, Labour’s ...
    3 days ago
  • Government scuppers affordability requirements
    The Government must explain why the panel considering Auckland’s unitary plan removed affordability requirements at the behest of the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment and Housing NZ, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. “Labour welcomes the Independent Hearing ...
    4 days ago
  • National pushes on with failed state house sell-off
    Merchant bankers, overseas companies and property developers will be lining up to buy 364 state houses in Horowhenua during two days of “market sounding” meetings starting tomorrow, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. “Despite a housing crisis and families ...
    4 days ago
  • QUESTIONS FOR (ORAL) ANSWER- WEDNESDAY 27TH OF JULY
    While Parliament might be in recess, there are still plenty of things that Ministers need to answer for. So the Labour team has put together six of the best questions that the Government should be answering today (plus a special ...
    4 days ago
  • Andrew Little’s International Affairs Speech
    Tena Koutou Katoa Can I begin by acknowledging: Sir Doug Kidd, President, NZ Institute of International Affairs Maty Nikkhou-O’Brien, Executive Director, who did all the organising for today’s event. Labour’s foreign affairs spokesperson David Shearer. Victoria University of Wellington law ...
    4 days ago
  • Inquiry into surgical mesh needed now
    The Government must urgently launch a Ministerial inquiry into surgical mesh after more than 500 patients have lodged claims of complications with the ACC, say Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King.  “This is the most widespread crisis involving surgical devices in ...
    4 days ago
  • Crime on the increase yet again
    Police Minister Judith Collins’ contention that crime is falling has proven to be wrong yet again, with latest Police statistics showing an increase in most crimes, Labour’s Police spokesperson Stuart Nash says. “Figures for June 2016 show an increase in ...
    5 days ago
  • Major reform of careers and apprenticeships to meet Future of Work
    The next Labour Government will transform careers advice in high schools to ensure every student has a personalised career plan, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. “Today I am announcing the next Labour Government will commit to a major ...
    5 days ago
  • DOC struggles on the pest front undermine Nats’ predator-free promise
    The Government’s planned predator-free initiative comes at the same time as the Department of Conservation is facing major challenges to keep pest numbers down, says Labour’s Conservation spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta.  “DOC’s annual report shows it failed on 5 out of ...
    5 days ago
  • QUESTIONS FOR (ORAL) ANSWER- TUESDAY 26TH OF JULY
    While Parliament might be in recess, there are still plenty of things that Ministers need to answer for. So the Labour team has put together six of the best questions that the Government should be answering today (plus a special ...
    5 days ago
  • Unfunded CYF a ticking time bomb
    The Ministry of Social Development is sitting on a ticking time bomb with Child, Youth and Family out of pocket by $56 million despite increased demand for its services, Labour’s Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. “The new entity that’s replacing ...
    5 days ago
  • Lack of any real funding in predator free proposal
    Predator Free New Zealand is a laudable idea but the Government has not committed any real money into killing New Zealand’s pests, says Labour’s Conservation spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta.  “The $28 million earmarked for this project is just to set up ...
    6 days ago
  • Andrew Little Speech to LGNZ Conference
    Thank you for having me here today. Local Government New Zealand’s work of advocating for New Zealand’s 78 local councils is critical as we upgrade New Zealand’s economy, and make sure it’s delivering for all our people. Whether in Auckland, ...
    6 days ago
  • John Key must sack out-of-depth Trade Minister
    The Prime Minister must sack Todd McClay for failing to do his job as Trade Minister and be on top of a significant potential threat to some of our biggest exporters, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “Todd McClay is clearly ...
    6 days ago
  • 45,000 Kiwis sent back to their GPs
    Last year nearly 45,000 Kiwis were sent back to their GPs without getting to see specialists they were referred to, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King. “This is a shocking figure and underlines how far the cut of $1.7 billion ...
    6 days ago
  • Half a million smells like pure cronyism
    The National/ACT Government’s decision to pump hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars into a new lobby group to advocate for charter schools shows just how much of a failure their ideological experiment has become, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. ...
    6 days ago
  • Select committee changes Kermadec/Rangitāhua Ocean Sanctuary Bill
    Photo by Tom Hitchon Parliament’s Local Government and Environment Committee has made many changes to the Kermadec/Rangitāhua Ocean Sanctuary Bill in response to public submissions, particularly submissions from iwi authorities and Te Ohu Kaimoana.   Read the amended Bill and the ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    1 week ago
  • Housing map a hit as crisis spreads across NZ
    More than 55,000 New Zealanders have used Labour’s interactive housing map in its first week to see how the housing crisis is affecting their local community, Labour Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “Our innovative map shows the housing crisis is ...
    1 week ago
  • Bridges must come clean about fraud within transport
    Hundreds of thousands of dollars of public money have gone missing and  the Minister of Transport, Simon Bridges must come clean after the Labour party revealed that a senior manager is being investigated for serious fraud, says Labour’s Transport Spokesperson ...
    1 week ago
  • Labour supports Spencer victory
    Labour congratulates Margaret Spencer for her tireless efforts in challenging the Government over family carer rights, says Labour’s Deputy Leader Annette King. ...
    1 week ago
  • US Warship visit welcomed by Labour
    Labour sees the United States warship visit as a red letter day for New Zealand’s non-nuclear status, which is core to our identity and has defined us a nation for 30 years, says Labour’s Deputy Leader Annette King. ...
    1 week ago
  • Time for honest dairy sector conversation
    ...
    1 week ago
  • What next? Dog kennels?
    Social Housing Minister Paula Bennett needs to explain why the Government thinks it is acceptable for it to refer families to live in garages and sheds, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “This is a new low, just when you ...
    1 week ago
  • Banks bust a move, Government possum in the headlights
    Three of the big four banks have acted responsibly by bringing the shutters down on property speculators earlier than required by the Reserve Bank, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “It’s a shame the Government isn’t as motivated to act ...
    1 week ago
  • Latest OECD dairy forecast raises serious questions for economy
    The latest global dairy price forecast shows that New Zealand dairy farmers will not reach a break-even payout before 2019 at the earliest, and will not reach the dairy price factored into this year’s Budget until after 2025, Labour’s Finance spokesperson ...
    1 week ago
  • National’s reckless, out of touch approach to economy exposed
    Today’s economic assessment from the Reserve Bank highlights the danger to the New Zealand economy from a National government that is recklessly complacent in the face of a housing crisis and a struggling export sector, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. ...
    1 week ago
  • GP’s visits get more expensive
      Visiting the GP is set to become more expensive after the Government ignored warnings that people were not receiving access to affordable  healthcare, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King.  “Over 400,000 New Zealanders who should be able to access ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Farm prices bear brunt of dairy downturn
    The slump in dairy prices that has seen farm prices drop to their lowest level since 2012 and down a third from their peak in 2014 will be of concern to farmers, banks and our overall financial stability, Labour’s Finance ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Reserve Bank “gets on with it”, National carries on in denial
    The proposal by the Reserve Bank to tighten loan to value ratios for investors shows they are prepared to do their bit to crack down on speculators, while National is still stuck in denial mode, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Housing crisis holds up interest rate cuts
    The housing crisis that National still wants to deny is stifling the New Zealand economy, says Labour’s Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson. “The latest Consumers Price Index shows that all prices excluding housing and household utilities decreased 0.5 per cent – ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Housing crisis holds up interest rate cuts
    The housing crisis that National still wants to deny is stifling the New Zealand economy, says Labour’s Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson. “The latest Consumers Price Index shows that all prices excluding housing and household utilities decreased 0.5 per cent – ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Govt’s state house sell-off ramping up
    Government plans to ramp up the state house sell-off by selling another 1000 houses in 2016/17 will mean more families in need missing out, says Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little. “New figures show the Government plans to sell 1000 ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Govt’s state house sell-off ramping up
    Government plans to ramp up the state house sell-off by selling another 1000 houses in 2016/17 will mean more families in need missing out, says Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little. “New figures show the Government plans to sell 1000 ...
    2 weeks ago
  • National must reassure exporters on dumping case
        The National Government needs to show our key exporters that they are in control of any anti-dumping case against China before it damages some of our most important industries, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says.     ...
    2 weeks ago
  • National must reassure exporters on dumping case
        The National Government needs to show our key exporters that they are in control of any anti-dumping case against China before it damages some of our most important industries, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says.     ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Papers describe litany of incredulity
    Treasury documents which slate the Government’s plans for a national bowel screening programme confirm the proposal was nothing more than a political stunt to cover up underfunding of the health sector, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette Kings says.  The papers were ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Effect of rampant house prices widens
    The latest house price figures from REINZ show the housing crisis expanding throughout the country, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “We are seeing steep increases in median house prices in Central Otago Lakes – up 42.4% in the last ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Public invited to have say on homelessness
    People who are homeless, those who were once homeless, those working with the homeless and concerned New Zealanders are being asked to share their experiences and solutions to this growing issue with the Cross-Party Homelessness Inquiry. This inquiry was launched ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Sorry seems to be the hardest word
    An apology from Hekia Parata to the people of Christchurch is long overdue, Labour's Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. "As if the earthquakes weren't traumatic enough, Hekia Parata and the Ministry of Education then attacked the one thing that had ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Housing crisis affecting more than 98 per cent of NZ
    Labour’s new housing map shows the housing crisis is now affecting more than 98 per cent of New Zealand, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. “Housing pressures have seen house prices rise faster than wages in all but four ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Uber might not be a taxi firm but it must pay tax
    Uber needs to explain how it paid only $9000 in tax when it earned $1m in revenue and is one of the fastest growing companies in the country, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Uber New Zealand appears to be ...
    3 weeks ago

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