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Will Brownlee apologise to Finland or resign?

Written By: - Date published: 9:13 am, March 27th, 2012 - 113 comments
Categories: Gerry Brownlee, International - Tags: ,

The lead story on Helsingin Sanomat, Finland’s largest newspaper is about the “violent comments” of Gerry Brownlee. Can’t this government go more than a couple of months without embarrassing us on the international stage?

Brownlee told some pretty bad lies about Finland. How would we react if a foreign politician said the same about NZ? We’d go off our fucken self-righteous rockers, that’s what we would do. It would be wall to wall coverage, endless wailing and gnashing of teeth.

Time to apologise or resign, Gerry.

It’s not just that he was insulting, it’s that he was wrong. Finland ranks very highly in most measures of well-being, and Brownlee was straight out lying in several of his claims –

Has less growth than us – in the past two years, Finland has grown over 7% to NZ’s 2%

Can hardly feed the people who live there – um, it’s not an agricultural country, it makes it wealth through high-tech. It’s people aren’t starving as Brownlee implies.

has a terrible homicide rate – It’s 13% higher than here and 17th best in the world.

hardly educates its people – Finland has the best education system in the world. It is distinguished by the high social status of teachers and the flexible curriculum, totally at odds with the US ‘standards’/’performance pay’ model that National is importing

has no respect for women – Finland elected its first female President in 2000. It’s first female PM in 2007. It has had more women then men in Cabinet. It’s a struggle to even name the most senior woman in our Cabinet. DPMC says it’s Judith Collins, ranked number 5. Finland was the first country in the world to give women the vote (wait, what? Well, women got general suffrage in 1906 and the Finns contend that makes them the first country to give women the vote because we were just a British colony and our Parliament wasn’t sovereign, but their Parliament was under the Russian Empire in 1906 – so let’s call that a draw).

In the days when being a minister carried a weight of dignity and responsibility to it – as it still does in countries like Finland – a minister would resign without being pushed after an incident like this. It is, simply, the right thing to do when you are a minister and you bring your country into disrepute.

In Brownlee’s case, I doubt we can find a lever long enough to wedge him from his limo seat and he won’t go out of principle.

A Finnish friend emailed me after I said sorry about our jerk of a minister –

“luckily New Zealand’s not full of them, we all have our jerks
we just talked about it during lunch with co-workers
just people were surprised about it, as usually positive things are said about NZ
it was like Dalai Lama would tell someone to F off
i just had to explain that jerks are mostly in your Beehive”

True that.

Meanwhile, a Finnish political satirist is giving us a taste of our own medicine. Guess we can’t whine about this –

113 comments on “Will Brownlee apologise to Finland or resign?”

  1. higherstandard 1

    I didn’t know Bomber Bradbury could speak finnish.

  2. Takere 2

    … Brown Lee the Pie Murder had better watch-out! Being a fat c%#t he’s given the Finn’s plenty of ammo to harpoon his fat ass!Haha! Let the games commence! Sack the fat bastard for being a complete imbecile!

  3. Karl Sinclair 3

    Unfortunately in the case of Brownlee, Bennett… etc the Cult of Average is upon us. Constipated with their own self importance.

    What a muppet.

    Love the pxxx take of NZ. Thanks for causing that Jerry…. maybe you could do a 101 course in Diplomacy.

    The National Party – Performing Below Average since 13/05/1936.

  4. ianmac 4

    Brownlie said his words were meant as a joke. Really???!!!

    • Jim Nald 4.1

      This is no laughing matter. Brownlee’s utterance, in effect, ridiculed Finland. By being such a cock, this is the Leader of the House reducing NZ’s worldwide name and the debates in our legislative chamber to laughing stock.

      His jibes must be publicly condemned by all NZers, and other Parliamentarians must disclaim him as their peer.

    • Lanthanide 4.2

      Yip. A small number of NZers may also find it funny, but I think most will think that Gerry is an embarrassing buffoon.

      What I’d like to see is some Finnish big-wig echo Winston’s statements about him being an illiterate wood-working teacher, and then saying “just joking!”.

    • David H 4.3

      I did not see anything funny in what he said. He must have a weird sense of humour.

    • Fortran 4.4

      Having Googled Finland with specific reference to Brownass’s comments I cannot find that the information he gave is wrong. Blame Google.

  5. Simon Poole 5

    I’d just like to point out that having a higher homicide rate is a *bad thing*.

    Of course, their rate is still incredibly low – 2.0 per 100k, vs. 1.76 per 100k for NZ, compared to a world-wide average between 6.9 and 7.6 depending on the numbers you use.

    • rosy 5.1

      … NZ 1.76/100,000 and Finland 2.0/100,000? now let me round that for you…. How significant is that?

      • If we baseline it at four million instead to see roughly how many people that actually equates to losing in New Zealand terms, we get 70.4 and they get 80. Hardly a rounding error to lose an extra 9 or 10 people a year. Likewise, the stats they’re beating us on aren’t as marginal as you might think when they use small numbers.

        • rosy 5.1.1.1

          True, but it appears to me that we’re only one bad year away from matching Finland’s stats – especially if that coincides with Finland having a good year. This appears likely as there trend seems to be stable or reducing, and ours rising.

    • Fair enough, Simon. But I wouldn’t try to draw conclusions on one year’s statistics.

      Here’s the stats on recorded homicides (and related offences?) for New Zealand since 1994.

      Note that in 2009 there were 127 offences in this category. In 2010 there were 97; 2008 102. 

      It’s up and down quite ‘significantly’. 

  6. HPT 6

    Tuomas Enbuske Talk Show video doesn’t represent opinion of whole Finland. I wouldn’t mock all New Zealanders because of one NZ politicians opinions. Actually we have also several our own “Mr. Gerry Brownlees” redneck morons in Finnish Parliament (i.e. some True Finns Party members, local National Party).

    Seems that here in Finland people do not see the difference between Mr. Gerry Brownlee’s opinions and opininions of the ordinary New Zealanders. At the moment all the main TV stations, newspapers and radio stations are full of news and articles of Mr. Gerry Brownlee, most known New Zealander politician in Finland at the moment;)

    Finnish Foreign Minister Mr. Erkki Tuomioja has proposed that Finnish Minister of Transportation Mrs. Merja Kyllonen should invite Mr. Gerry Brownlee to visit Finland to learn some real facts of Finland. Yesterday NZ PM Mr. John Philip Key met President of Finland Mr. Sauli Niinisto in Nuclear Security Summit in Seoul, South-Korea to regret Mr. Brownlee’s opinions of Finland.

    According to Mr. Niinisto when he was a Minister of Finance in 1996-2003 and Finland was in recession, opposition parties made calling for Finland to follow in the footsteps of New Zealand. Mr. Niinisto proposed to Mr. John Philip Key that propably combining the best of New Zealand and best of Finland, we could get the best combination of world leading economy and society.

    BTW: Where is located world’s most northern rugby team?
    (OYUS Rugby Club, Oulu, Finland, 200km from Arctic Circle)

    • prism 6.1

      @ HDT We want better things from our politicians than this garbage. There are many NZs who listen to talk show hosts that talk rubbish but we want better from this well-paid jerk.

      And tell Finnish people not to invite him there – he’ll probably drop another clanger. Anyway he has a number of jobs he is not doing well, particularly assisting in the the advancement of Christchurch and providing affordable housing etc. He isn’t doing that. He is a spectacular failure and all the people in Ilam, Christchurch who voted for him must be morons or National Party cult clones.

      • prism 6.1.1

        @HPT
        Got the initials right now. I thought that I should explain the point about Christchurch city – we had a serious earthquake there in 2010 and another in Feb 2011 and another in June 2011 and certain areas of the city are wrecked and have to be pulled down. Brownlee was keen on this
        demolishment but he doesn’t see his duty to do provide much assistance with helping those with the least resources, and wants to leave housing provision to speculators. He’s a great guy. Not!

  7. Tom Gould 7

    Brownlee is simply a bully, drunk on power, a super sized Muldoon. At some stage, sooner rather than later, his own personal failings will be outed, by his own side, as the jockeying intensifies.

  8. ghostwhowalksnz 8

    Just wait till the Swedes and the Danes hear of this…..they will pile in onto the Finns as well.

    They could point out that the Finns have a ‘invented’ language.

    • grumpy 8.1

      Right on GHW. The Finns need to apologise for being such boring alcoholics and murderers.

      The Swedes have a saying….;

      Q “What has Finland got that Sweden hasn’t?”

      A “Good neighbours”

      I very much doubt that Brownlee’s comments have raised even a ripple in Finland.

    • Jackal 8.2

      The Helsingin Sanomat is published in Sweden and Denmark. It’s Scandinavia’s largest subscription newspaper. There is no doubt old balls-up Brownlee has damaged our international standing with his uneducated and defamatory remarks. Where’s that higher standard John Key was talking about again?

      • grumpy 8.2.1

        Bullshit. My Danish and Swedish friends will be delighted. NZ as an ally in the eternal slanging match among the Scandanavian countries.

        The only one they all gang up on is Germany.

        • Eestimaal 8.2.1.1

          It’s in the news in Estonia as well. Don’t think it’s only in Finland that Brownlee has made us look bad.

        • ghostwhowalksnz 8.2.1.2

          There was long a saying in Europe: The poor Poles, with Germany and Russia ( previously) as neighbours and only the French as friends.

        • proudPIIGS 8.2.1.3

          Let them taste their own medicine. Some Finns say much worse about southern europe. Racist ignorants!

  9. Colonial Viper 9

    “Gerry Brownlee…I’m pretty sure you are eating something…you are a significant person…even by body mass only…” LOLOLOLOLOL

  10. Colonial Viper 10

    I’d just like to say to all our Finnish friends…we think Brownlee is a right fracker too, and I’m personally looking forwards to visiting beautiful Finland on my next trip to the continent.

  11. Been Benuane 11

    Of course he’ll get away with this Scot-free.

    • mac1 11.1

      We do have a penchant for slagging other cultures, don’t we, with our language- Dutch courage, French leave, Scot-free- and many more. What does that say about us?

      • insider 11.1.1

        Let’s hope no-one Welshes on the deal…might end up being called an indian giver. Course it’s Greek gifts you have to worry about. Back to work; lucky I;m on Maori time.

    • Craig Glen Eden 11.2

      Lets not bring the Scottish into this BB. Brownlie might end up with a Glasgow Kiss.

  12. employed weekend murderer 12

    As a Finn, I think we should declare war to NZ! Wait a minute, where the f is NZ? I can’t even find Finland from this map. Damn my education. Nevertheless, I’m wait for Mr. Brownlee’s visit to Finland. I’m already sharpening my axe, and getting shitfaced from Koskenkorva vodka. A polar bear friend of mine at next door promised to join to this lynching campaign. In the meantime I beat the crap out of my wife, until Mr. Brownlee arrives.

    Or, that’s what gonna happen if Mr. Brownlee ever finds Finland. And if I didn’t have to go to work tomorrow, and design those darn wireless heartrate monitors. To be truthful, I’m PhD educated tech-geek, so I don’t actually have a girlfriend, let alone wife. Furthermore, polar bears do not actually roam in Finland. Anyway, don’t mess with us.

    PS. I have to admit that you have Peter Jackson, we have reindeers.

    • ghostwhowalksnz 12.1

      You can have Peter Jackson if you send some reindeer.

      After all Tolkein created his boring stories after researching Finnish folklore in the Kalevala. The language he made up” Elvish’ is based on Finnish.

      • Vicky32 12.1.1

        After all Tolkein created his boring stories

        I disagree! They are not boring at all… 
        (Jackson just filmed (and changed) them. The books are so much better.)

    • Jasper 12.2

      Nah f%$k you can have that other fat bastard Jackson too! Got a Welfare Benefit for $85,000,000 & casualised the film industry. Bought himself a $50,000,000 plane with some of the money and nearly choked to death in it while eating something! Haha! Then claims back more than $150,000,000 in GST refunds over the passed 3 years! Another pig the world can have!

      • Enough is Enough 12.2.1

        Charming comment

        Take it to the sewer

      • prism 12.2.2

        @Jasper I think you sound like a badly fed pig. Maybe if you hang around and look as cute as a kune kune Jackson will eventually throw something your way. He is a doer and achiever and you are a whining, mindless wank.r with ideas above your sty. How many jobs have you created? What investment have you made in the country (outside buying alcohol or video games where you can indulge your fantasies). Have you done any of those short films? Good luck with doing something positive.

    • Te Reo Putake 12.3

      And you have this guy, too. Of course Gerry has scored a lot more own goals than Jari Litmanen …

    • rosy 12.4

      You don’t need Peter Jackson – you have Lordi! :-D

  13. Sanctuary 13

    The Finns feel bad? Spare a thought for us New Zealanders, we’ve been trying to escape his gravitational pull for years.

  14. js 14

    Don’t forget the Moomins.

  15. Pete 15

    Brownlee has made a non-apology apology. An “I’m sorry if you took offence” rather than an “I’m sorry I said it as it was wrong to say”.

  16. Jve 16

    Greetings from finland. This whole issue is the most hilarious piece of ‘news’ imaginable.
    it’s clear to many(here) that Finland was used as a chip on betting round of political poker.
    This time the bluff was called. The tabloid press is the winner of this round.

    Seriously, why not declare a war, and sort it out like men do? The finnish military budget
    has been under some cuts lately, so we have limited resources to be proactive. And our
    last offensive to NZ did not turn out so well. Peter Jackson covered this battle in his
    documentary, Bad Taste(1987). The Finnish soldiers were inaccurately portrayed as eaters of
    bright green slime. Pea Soup (hernekeitto, easy-peasy-pudding,Pie floater)is really darkish
    greyish greenish and not bright at all. In Finland at least.

    • prism 16.1

      Jve
      Veeery interesting. If we went to war it would boost our economic level. We are always worrying about that and it has been noted that conventional economics count war as useful activity but not unpaid work. So war could be regarded as a good idea by the dead hand of economists.

      But we could have a symbolic battle of course. Is it Finnish men who build themselves up and then run for a mile with a woman over his shoulder? We could start an inter-country series of games to see who is the best. Of course carrying a woman would now not be acceptable, but we have deer and wild pigs that I believe are really heavy. Do you think there is the germ of an idea here?

  17. Risto A 17

    The whole thing is really getting out of proportion. This Brownlee person only indicated true the universal fact that never believe a politician.

    The Enbuske show was stupid too, how do these low IQ persons get into politics and TV shows, I just wonder…

    Greetings from .fi

    • Jasper 17.1

      Haha! Great use of terminology, …”getting out of proportion”.. in reference to Fat Boy Brown Lee! If there’s a plane that can get him to Finland or a ship…. and the immigration officials allow him to enter Finland. NO BAGS! We don’t want the fat f%$ker back! He’s all yours Finland! We’ll throw in Paula Benefit too his fat ass gurlfriend!

  18. prism 18

    Why would Brownlee resign? He’s Deputy Leader of the House and the perfect exemplar of the thrusting, demanding finance and commerce oriented types running the National Party. The people who vote for National are not interested in the finer details of ethics and diplomacy, just in doing what they want, getting what they want and saying what they want. They personally want their education to serve their limited ideas shaped to advance their own materialistic desires and they don’t waste time informing themselves of anything else except to look good on a CV or to get a scholarship at Harvard etc.

    So one of our top politicians disses Finland who are in many ways similar to us and have overcome a more variable climate that makes life harder than is the case in most of NZ. Finland has succeeded and stayed at the top of world rankings. We are sinking into the morass of vicious business practices that early USA used to extract the most out of their people for the least money.

    National doesn’t want to take education to a higher level so we all have the opportunity to being clever problem solvers in the world, with a philosophical view that respects all other humans and their potential. So the budget cutters come down on night school that feeds the needs of those having to retrain themselves in the constantly changing world that past governments have made more difficult by dropping tariffs so we can be sure to keep exporting dairy. Doesn’t matter that they have wiped out lots of NZ jobs. They take no responsibility for that or for providing opportunities for post-school education.

    Why is higher education not valued in NZ. Tom Lehrer sang about watching bullfighting – 800lbs of angry pot roast – well that’s often the spectacle to be seen in our parliamentary exchanges. Bovine and/or slick men and women choose their higher education with as little as possible of the humanities in the mix. An MBA with post graduate diploma in change theory will get a high salary.

    Gordon McLauchlan in The Passionless People doesn’t fudge the issue. p2

    ‘Quality of life’ was an optimistic, resonant phrase at first, one which implied some broad agreement about a goal, what the good life really is. But then a couple of election campaigns stripped it bare and revealed that we New Zealanders have no moral or social philosophy, no dream of the future, beyond the orthodox good health of that pagan god, The Economy.

  19. tsmithfield 19

    If you’re easily offended by humour about the Finnish, then you really should avoid this site. And definitely avoidthis one too

    It looks like plenty of people are already taking the piss out of the Finnish. So why shouldn’t we as well? :smile:

    • prism 19.1

      ts
      We don’t need to pick on the Finnish. We’ve got your good self to keep us amused.

      • tsmithfield 19.1.1

        Heh. I didn’t realise that comment had actually been posted. You’d better not look at the full version of it below then.

    • Pascal's bookie 19.2

      smitty, if the new standard for what we can expect from our politicians is “is there anything like it on the internet”; then umm, fuck.

    • felix 19.3

      “Taking the piss”?

      “Jokes”?

      He called them a nation of starving uneducated sexist murderers you twat.

      Also, what P’s b said.

  20. tsmithfield 20

    If you’re easily offended by humour about the Finnish, then you really should avoid this site. And definitely avoid this one too

    Here is a particularly disgusting joke that demonstrates how terrible and prejudiced attitudes are towards the poor Finnish people:

    Pekka and Jukka are sitting by a lake after drinking heavily. Suddenly, out of the lake pops an elf who immediately grants the lucky Finns three wishes.

    After some pondering Pekka gets excited: “I would like the water in the lake to turn to vodka.”

    Hey presto! The water in the lake turns to vodka! Jukka and Pekka can’t hide their excitement, but the elf reminds them that they have two wishes left.

    Jukka says: “Maybe something for the eye. I want beautiful girls all around the lake.”

    And the elf immeditely makes his wish come true.

    Having had their two dearest wishes granted, Jukka and Pekka are at a lost as to what to ask for their last wish.

    Suddenly, Pekka has an idea: “I’ve got it! I’ve got the third wish!” Holding his thumb and index finger two inches apart, he adds: “Could we have a little more vodka, please?”

    • Eestimaal 20.1

      Poor attempt at distraction. It’s not about whether it is possible to make jokes about Finns.

      a) Brownlee wasn’t telling jokes. He said “It’s unbelievable isn’t it. That you’d … make a speech saying I want New Zealand to be like Finland which has worse unemployment than us, can hardly feed the people who live there, has a terrible homicide rate, hardly educates their people and has no respect for women”. There’s no joke in there.

      b) Brownlee is a senior representative of the NZ government. In fact he is currently Acting PM. His standard of behaviour has to reflect the fact he is a face of NZ.

      • Pete George 20.1.1

        I think Brownlee took it too far in his speech, didn’t sound much like joking to me – and neither do the consequent jangle of jibes floating around.

        I wish he was big enough to make a decent apology, but it doesn’t look like it, he must be on a common decency diet. Even if he thought he weas joking some of it didn’t look good so should he should acknowledge that offence could be taken from it.

  21. vto 21

    What this episode does of course is highlight the silliness of relying on politicians to act as leaders.

    Brownlee is not one of our leaders. He is a normal person with a thick skin, a big mouth, and a position which is not suited to him.

  22. hoom 22

    A stinging rebuke by Tuomas Enbuske & well deserved.

    So sick of these ignorant bigoted clowns :-/

  23. Kevin 23

    It doesn’t matter whether Brownlee apologises or not, the damage has been done. New Zealand’s reputation has been tarnished by Brownlee’s big mouth, now all visitors from the Baltic region will be looking sideways at New Zealand.
    In addition to the above Brownlee’s misfired attempt at satire was riddled with lie’s, big fat lie’s that will stick to him for the rest of his political career.

    • prism 23.1

      Probably not Kevin. Most countries are afflicted with politicians who have inflated ideas about their abilities and who manage to con enough voters to get in.

  24. tsmithfield 24

    I wouldn’t be too worried about negative publicity.

    There are probably lots of people in Finland who have never heard about NZ before who know about us now. As the saying goes, any publicity is good publicity. We might get an increase of tourism from Finnish people who want to discover if we really do shag sheep. :smile:

    Sorry, I just can’t find myself being too serious about this topic. I know I probably should be.

    • felix 24.1

      Yeah, you probably should.

      In fact all you righties ought to be very upset about it, if you ever want to post comments about xenophobia again.

      But hey, if you want to argue that it’s more offensive to say you think our assets should be owned by people who live here than to call another nation uneducated starving sexist murderers (and then go all LOLz about it smitty), go right ahead.

      • tsmithfield 24.1.1

        C’mon Felix.

        Don’t you realize this is a brilliant new marketing strategy for the country. I call it “offend then befriend”.

        1. Pick some random country that knows nothing about us.
        2. Get some government minister to say some outrageously offensive things about them that their news media picks up on and creates a great fuss in their country, and upsets their politicians.
        3. Our PM contacts them and says very sorry. The public apology also gets lots of media time over there.
        4. We make diplomatic contact with them and say, “now we’re friends how about we talk about trade”, and we embark on a media campaign in that country to promote NZ as a tourist destination.

        • McFlock 24.1.1.1

          how did that work with India and paul henry’s comments? Did we get a massive influx of outraged but heavily-spending tourists?

          • Colonial Viper 24.1.1.1.1

            I don’t think ts gets how this “relationship building” lark between people goes.

            • McFlock 24.1.1.1.1.1

              I dunno – I have a vision of him at business association functions:
                
              “ooo – I don’t know you. You look like a fucking inbred moron who fucks sheep.

              Now that we have a relationship, would you like to do business with me?” 
                    
                 
              speaking of business associations, the dude formerly of the EMA (Alisdair Thompson?) would also disagree that any publicity is good publicity.

          • tsmithfield 24.1.1.1.2

            “how did that work with India and paul henry’s comments? Did we get a massive influx of outraged but heavily-spending tourists?”

            That wasn’t according to my prescribed plan though. In that instance Paul Henry wasn’t a high level government minister. For this plan to work there needs to be a high level of shock value followed by a high level of contrition value. We don’t want them pissed off with us for too long.

            • McFlock 24.1.1.1.2.1

              Oh, you expect contrition from the nats?
              We’re fucked. 

              • tsmithfield

                “I dunno – I have a vision of him at business association functions:

                “ooo – I don’t know you. You look like a fucking inbred moron who fucks sheep.

                Now that we have a relationship, would you like to do business with me?””

                Nah. Thats not how it works. Its similar to the “good cop, bad cop routine”.

                If I was to make this work, I would have a business colleague say some really offensive things about a potential customer we no relationship with and knows little about us. Then I would apologise profusely, tell them my collegue was under huge stress at the moment, and offer to take them out for a meal to mend the fences.

                • McFlock

                  better yet, pretend he’s a complete stranger and “come to the rescue”.
                     
                       
                   Of course, normal people tend to simply rely on not being so weird that they’d need to employ such distractions from their personalities.

                • felix

                  1. Say stupid ignorant offensive things
                  2. ???
                  3. Profit

                  Still not seeing any righties wanting to distance themselves from Gerry’s stupid ignorant xenophobic remarks.

                  Almost as if all that stuff about China was a great big lie that none of you believed.

        • Puddleglum 24.1.1.2

          tsmithfield, would it be equally hilarious if a Labour or Green or Mana MP had said that the US is an uneducated, murderous, sexist, poverty stricken country?

          Or, would it be condemned as a vehemently anti-american ‘attack’? 

          • tsmithfield 24.1.1.2.1

            “tsmithfield, would it be equally hilarious if a Labour or Green or Mana MP had said that the US is an uneducated, murderous, sexist, poverty stricken country?”

            Not at all. Because in many respects that would be telling the truth.

    • McFlock 24.2

      “Any publicity is good publicity”.
         
      Paul Gadd would disagree. 
         
      More seriously, that comment always pisses me off. It’s generally said by arseholes who have been discovered as arseholes, but who are too big an arsehole to realise that being an arsehole is a bad thing, even if you do happen to make money as a result of being outed as an arsehole.
            
      I think, on the balance of things, that less people will visit from Finland because of Brownlee’s comments than visited from the US because of our dear dickhead’s performance on Letterman. So fuck all, then.
           
       

  25. The Finnish embassy says the matter is now at an end

    Juha Parikka, the deputy head of mission, told Radio New Zealand on Tuesday afternoon that the matter is now at an end.

    “Prime Minister Key has presented his regrets to the Finnish president, whom he met yesterday in Seoul at the nuclear conference. He said that he’s sorry for the comments.”

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/political/101882/finland-accepts-apology-over-nz-minister

    A pity Brownlee didn’t present his regrets a bit better.

    • employed weekend murderer 25.1

      Not enough!

      I demand 2 sheeps as an exchange for 1 reindeer. And Peter Jackson as promised earlier.

    • tsmithfield 25.2

      So, we must be approaching the Finnish line on this thread then. :smile:

  26. Jasper 26

    Ae!

  27. ghostwhowalksnz 27

    We have run out of marmite but we havent seen much of this ‘Finishing sauce’ for a while

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-SeHUD6SRvk

    Perhaps the Finns could send us a new supply

  28. hybrid 28

    Gerry Brownlee, the laziest school teacher I ever had,he would give above average marks to students who deserved far less to make his own performance look good,and now he demonstrates to the world the Kiwi island bunker mentality..

    • mac1 28.1

      I call him Gerrymander, the Finnagler.

    • Mark 28.2

      I understand that Brownlee managed to avoid stuffing tennis balls into his students’ mouths

      • McFlock 28.2.1

        Yeah, the unimaginative prick probably just beat them with sticks like teachers were allowed to do at that time. 
             
        Besides, methinks he’s been overcompensating for years by putting his feet in his own mouth. 

  29. KeepOurAssetsDon'tSell. 29

    Oberleutenant Brownlee is an arrogant IGNORAMUS!

    Humour aside what does worry me is obviously we have no intelligent intellectual, humanistic leadership with national. Shonkey is on autopilot with his selfserving ideology, blind to the wreckage it has caused here and round the World, a school student could understand that selling our assets is crazy. Herr Brownlee shows his deprivation of intelligence, humanity and sense in his comment.
    So these bigoted ideological blockheads are running the show,not least Shonkey:Poor New Zealand.

    One of Finland’s greatest achievements is the music of the composer Sibelius, who was a European Romantic.

    I like women their hair colour doesn’t matter but Finland has lots of dishy blonds- a romantic hair colour of the North compared with the romantic hair colour Black in Spain.

  30. What is it about nokia.. ….i got sheeep and loud mouth

  31. JT 31

    Send Gerry to Finland.
    He is a rare commodity.
    We’ll ship him back by xmas.

    Rare exports Inc
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kCaC-uaMsvg

    • lprent 31.1

      Why would we want him back?

      I’m sure that if he was out of the way, that the work on rebuilding Christchurch would proceed faster and with a lot less friction. Perhaps the Russians would like him. He’d be a natural at their style of political managment.

  32. Jve 32

    Prism,
    The germ is brewing and getting more potent..

    “Of course carrying a woman would now not be acceptable, but we have deer and wild pigs that I believe are really heavy. Do you think there is the germ of an idea here?”

    Of course not women. How about carrying politicians ?? We pick one of yours for you to carry(choose your weapons:), and vice versa . You could pick Timo Soini, one of our heavy-weight statesmans for us to bear. This could very well lead for mutual benefit in …

    Wait a minute, aren’t we allready doing that ??

    • prism 32.1

      @Jve Absolutely brilliant idea. But there might not be equality of weight – muscle weighs heavier than fat. So if your politicians are big and in good shape and aren’t ‘fatheads’ such as pollies like Brownlee, it could be a case of flabby deadweight ‘Billy Buster’ Brownlee against a possibly Nordic god from Finland. I think after consideration we should award you the contest Trophy Antlers and skulk back to our corners.

      And it’s great to chat to you in English. We have rarely learned other languages as being connected to Britain was all we cared about (though my dead pilot father ended up buried in France – tristresse for toujours for him.) One day we may get a smart educational system that includes all languages, but at present our government is trying to make a sow’s ear out of a silk purse, if you understand the reversal of that old saying.

      So – Good evening (here) Hyvää iltaa
      Useful link for NZs to learn more about Finnish. http://www.squidoo.com/how-do-I-say-it-in-finnish

      • Vicky32 32.1.1

        We have rarely learned other languages as being connected to Britain was all we cared about (though my dead pilot father ended up buried in France – tristresse for toujours for him.) One day we may get a smart educational system that includes all languages,

        Seriously Prism, speak for yourself! My father actually came from England and all of us were bullied, seriously, as “Poms”.. so in my experience, you’re talking utter nonsense.
        Speak for yourself about language as well… At school in the 1960s, I had the choice of French, German  and Latin.
        My older son had the option of Maori and Japanese, and my younger one, Japanese, French and Russian…

        • rosy 32.1.1.1

          My older son had the option of Maori and Japanese, and my younger one, Japanese, French and Russian…
          I took Japanese for 3 years… can’t remember a word of it, but it’s useful while in Austria as an excuse for why I don’t speak German ;-)

          • Vicky32 32.1.1.1.1

            I took Japanese for 3 years…

            Leon took all the options – even though he’s a science nerd, cause that’s the kind of person he is. (Asbergers, we think). But the one he enjoyed most was Japanese, although his French is pretty good – and now he’s obsessed with anime… :D
            (You probably remember more than you think you do!)

  33. diver 33

    Almost everybody in Finland knows where New Zealand is located. This is because of NZ Rally and kiwi fruits. We Finns are very keen supporters of rallysport and have been that for decades. And we definitely had nothing against you until now. And we will begin to like you after a couple of weeks when the dust has settled.

    Any volunteers over there to hit him on the nose? :-)

    • lprent 33.1

      We’re not much into physical violence – it is unlawful.

      But this site’s authors have long regarded Brownlee with a contempt, disdain, and as a blight on the political landscape. Their writing on him is a pointed reflection on why. There have been posts on his personal shortcomings and inadequete performance ever since the site started in 2007.

      • Pete George 33.1.1

        I guess you are in a position to be able to speak on behalf of “this site’s authors”.

        As a non-site author I’d like to point out to diver that Brownlee’s comments were not directed at Finland at all, they were an overbaked ham-fisted attempt to make a point in our Parliament, aimed at the main opposition party who has championed some things Finnish but is finding that not everything lines up with it’s own ideological position.

        • lprent 33.1.1.1

          I looked it up the other day. There have been posts that are uncomplimentary about Brownlee from at least 15 authors on a variety of topics. This is merely the most recent screwup.

        • prism 33.1.1.2

          @PG What a wet paper towel you are. (Made in NZ.)

  34. Dr Phil 34

    I wonder if all EU media got this or just Finland. I would imagine trade is going to suffer, and NZ’s image will be tarnished as being a haven for morons like Brownlee. There have been a few hard lessons around lately. oowch Gerry, the shit has hit the fan because you were a dickhead

  35. JT 35

    “Off-the-cuff comments by politicians can have far-reaching impact with implications for exporters, Jackson Estate founder John Stitchbury said yesterday.
    Mr Stitchbury confirmed that Finland was Jackson Estate’s third-largest market and that customers had contacted the winery about acting prime minister Gerry Brownlee’s comments about the country.
    No-one had said they would stop selling Jacksons Estate wine, he said, but it was reported yesterday that a Finnish bar has removed New Zealand beers from its shelves because of the comments.”

    “But good news could also travel – his nephew, living in Christchurch and having difficulty finding work, wrote a blog, which was picked up by Nokia in Finland.
    The company flew him to Helsinki and he was now working there on excellent wages.”
    http://www.stuff.co.nz/marlborough-express/news/6664537/Finns-dump-Kiwi-beers-is-wine-next

    I guess this John Stitchbury is not pleased..
    I drink that Jackson Estate wine too. For some reason it is big here in Finland.

    But I wouldn’t worry too much.
    This was one day news here and I bet it was not news anywhere else in the world.
    And while the media makes a big deal out of it, I doubt people really do.
    It’s was a common joke in coffee tables for one day.
    Other news tomorrow.

    The thing that makes it weird for us is that Gerry was acting PM.
    Here that could never happen.
    Hey, as a PM let’s just insult the Swedes, Estonians and the Russians a bit.

    They talk trash in parliament here too, but customs here are that acting ministers do not participate in the banter (being state reprisentatives). That made the finns propably first think that “hey, is this some kind of a formal statement of NZ.

    • Dr Phil 35.1

      I’m sure Gerry is a high functioning Autistic, he has some physical genetic tell tales, his faux pau’s are infamous, and his empathy is way off.

      Big sorry to you guys in Scandinavia. I really love your politics. When my family came to NZ from the Netherlands in 1964, our ministers would often travel to Sweden too learn light socialist policy. Back then, NZ was number two in the world for standard of living, after Sweden, and our currency was an equivalent of $1NZ=$2US

      If we had continued to follow Scandinavian example, my country would have been much better off

  36. Will 36

    Nice try, but “The lead story on Helsingin Sanomat, Finland’s largest newspaper is about the ‘violent comments’ of Gerry Brownlee” just doesn’t wash. That link is to a search on Brownlee and merely turns up all articles with his name in it that were on the online site. Our big headlines are about defence cuts, Nokia closures, corporate greed (the options go-round), municipal reform, and the ice hockey playoffs.

    This is small beer, a silly-season episode that will be forgotten by Easter, and sooner if one of our own MPs spontaneously combusts – and we have a hatful of suitable candidates who could give your Big Gerry a good run for his money.

    Helsingin Sanomat has run the dissing story pretty tongue-in-cheek, and it’s only the desperate tabloids who are working it to death – most people couldn’t give a shit, and realise it’s all NZ domestic politics anyway. We got a lot more narked at the blanket coverage after our last Parliamentary elections, when all of a sudden the little goody-goody of the European Union was seen to have “gone sceptic” and threatened to pull the plug on the Greeks and the Portuguese. Suddenly being told (by nearly everyone) that you are a nation of rabid nationalist, populist immigrant-bashers because 19% voted for a protest party (and dohhhh, why was that, because they were PROTESTING against the mainstream Centre-Left parties, innit – most would run a mile in bare feet before they saw our True Finns actually in government) is much more likely to get one’s dander up than having someone a zillion miles away take a few liberties with statistics. The same goes for being told you are all wing-nut, gun-crazed spree-shooters when some adolescent with shit for brains and an overenthusiastic leaning for the Net kills his classmates. Now THAT pissed us off.

    Big Gerry’s crass, yes, and he seems like a boor, but I hardly think he’s a weapon of much more than mild distraction up here. Don’t worry about us, or about unsold joints of NZ lamb in Finnish supermarkets. It ain’t going to happen.

    Oh, and if you want to see a Finnish take on the subject, try this one below. Reading between the lines, hey, maybe BGB had a point – all he needed was a touch of intelligence in the way he expressed it.

    http://www.hs.fi/english/article/1329103704479

    • JT 36.1

      Problems are global nowadays.
      There is trouble in the US, Sweden, Finland, Russia and New Zealand.
      We’ve been doing quite well compared to rest of Europe here, Sweden even better.

      Everybody tries to draw conclusions about this and further some agenda.
      It was not taken seriously (well except by the 16 year old people commenting youtube videos who wait for the upcoming ice-hockey championships here ;) )

      The one silly thing is that New Zealand has a great image here.
      Clean, beautiful nature, great produce, somehow we had the feeling that the people are somewhat same as the finns too (a bit introverted) etc…
      Not that you guys are often in the news here.

      So this was a silly thing.
      Forgotten by next week.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rolrwcI0tZw

      All the best.

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    Labour | 30-10
  • 50,000 sign petition against anti-worker law
    More than 50,000 Kiwis have signed Labour’s petition against the Government’s scrapping of tea break entitlements, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “That’s the equivalent of five people signing our petition every minute for a week. It shows the...
    Labour | 30-10
  • Address in Reply Debate – Dr Kennedy Graham on UN Security Council- 2...
    In the Speech from the Throne last week the Prime Minister identified the usual domestic goals for his Government. I counted 17. They are not my subject today. I wish instead to focus on matters beyond our shores. In the...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Climate change harming ocean health
    New Zealand is responsible for one of the largest areas of sea in the world – an area 14 times the size of our land area. The National Government is promising new marine protected areas legislation with a discussion document...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Key misled public over Jason Ede
    Information contained in a new chapter of the book Key: Portrait of a Prime Minister, that Jason Ede stopped working for the National Party on the night the book Dirty Politics was released, shows Mr Key and senior ministers hid...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Greenpeace report highlights better path for NZ agriculture
    A Greenpeace International report highlights a better way forward for New Zealand agriculture than the GE and chemical mutation technologies supported by Federated Farmers, and the National Government through its research funding packages, the Green Party said today. "This report...
    Greens | 29-10
  • BNZ post record profits while leaving savers vulnerable
    A small part of the $850 million record profit posted by the Bank of New Zealand (BNZ) today needs to be set aside to protect savers' deposits in the future, said Green Party Co-leader Dr Russel Norman today.Dr Norman was...
    Greens | 29-10
  • RBNZ U-turn shows monetary settings were wrong
    The Reserve Bank's U-turn on interest rates today shows monetary policy settings were wrong and New Zealanders have suffered unnecessarily through the loss of jobs and having to pay higher interest rates, the Green Party said today.Reserve Bank Governor Graeme...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Ports must take responsibility for shameful death toll
    Port companies must step up and take responsibility for a shameful toll of seven deaths and 133 serious accidents in the past three years, Labour MP Iain Lees-Galloway says. The frightening figures – released by the Rail, Maritime and Transport...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Please help me get my Feed the Kids Bill to Select Committee
    Last week I took over the Feed the Kids Bill that Hone Harawira had introduced to Parliament. If passed, my Bill will provide government-funded breakfast and lunch in all decile 1 and 2 schools. Hungry kids can’t learn and are...
    Greens | 29-10
  • TVNZ Outsourcing Pasifika and Maori Programmes
    I’ve always been a big fan of our state broadcaster and I’ve particularly liked their range of current events programmes. But after Friday’s announcement that TVNZ will be sacking up to 40 staff by contracting out the Pacific and Maori...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Labour urges iwi leaders to meet with National
    Labour’s Māori Caucus has called on iwi leaders and national Māori organisations to seek urgent meetings with the National Government to directly express their concerns about employment law changes which will harm Māori workers. In an open letter sent today...
    Labour | 29-10
  • ACC’s reputation needs fix, not glitz
    Restoring public trust and confidence in ACC will take a lot more than a new communications strategy or social media blitz, says Labour’s ACC spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway. “Under National, ACC has come to be perceived as insensitive, difficult to deal...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Lessons to be learned from police investigation
    The outcome of the so-called Roast Busters case should not put victims off reporting sexual crimes, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “This case has been mishandled from the start. Within days of police initially saying no charges had...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Anti-worker legislation is anti-Pacifica
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples, Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga, will go down in history as being part of a Government that harmed his own people through anti-worker legislation, says Labour’s Pacific Island Affairs spokesperson Su’a William Sio.  “Pacific people are among...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Five-year tax holiday for overseas tax dodgers
    National has just gifted a five-year tax holiday for foreign companies dodging their tax payments, says Revenue spokesperson David Clark. “Todd McClay has pretended he is doing something about overseas companies dodging their tax duties by joining an international initiative...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Traffic Jam Tax must be given the red light
    Auckland Council’s proposed Traffic Jam Tax could cost some households thousands of dollars a year just to use roads they had already paid for with their taxes and must be rejected, says Labour’s transport and Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford....
    Labour | 29-10
  • National has chance to show leadership on limos
    The National Party has the opportunity to show leadership by transitioning our vehicle fleet towards renewable electricity when a new contract to supply Government limousines for VIPs goes to tender next month, the Green Party said today. "This is a...
    Greens | 29-10
  • The Māori Party can’t have it both ways over labour laws
    The Māori Party has to fess up over its voting record on the Employment Relations Amendment Bill, says Labour’s Māori Caucus.  “It’s simply not good enough to oppose the bill at the same time  as they helped speed up its progress through...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Equal pay and the aged care sector
    Today the High Court upheld the historic ruling by the Employment Court that our Equal Pay Act could be used to consider work of equal value cases; the government has been telling the UN and ILO that it could for...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Court case perfect opportunity for Government to improve gender pay gap
    If the Government wants to halt New Zealand’s slump in international rankings on the gender pay gap it should act on the court finding that women deserve equal wages, Labour’s Women’s Affairs spokesperson Sue Moroney says. “The World Economic Forum’s...
    Labour | 28-10
  • All Auckland transport options should be considered
    All options for meeting Auckland's transport needs should be considered, including reprioritising the transport budget away from wasteful spending on motorways, the Green Party said today.Auckland mayor Len Brown is today releasing a transport report by the Independent Advisory Board,...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Another report highlights Govt failure on child poverty
    An international report measuring the impact of the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) on child poverty rates, showing children in New Zealand have done worse than children in other countries, is further proof the Government needs to urgently take additional steps...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Address and Reply Debate Part 55: Inequality and Disability
    I rise on behalf of the Green Party to talk about inequality and disability.The recent census showed that nearly one in four New Zealanders lives with a disability—up from one in five in the previous census. These figures include some...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Address and Reply Debate Part 55: Inequality and Disability
    I rise on behalf of the Green Party to talk about inequality and disability.The recent census showed that nearly one in four New Zealanders lives with a disability—up from one in five in the previous census. These figures include some...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Child poverty: No more wake-up calls
    A new report which shows the National Government has made no inroads whatsoever into child poverty should do more than just set alarm bells ringing, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “UNICEF’s  latest Innocenti Report Card highlights the fact...
    Labour | 28-10
  • Eugenie Sage speaks in the 2014 Address in Reply Debate
    I congratulate you, Assistant Speaker Mallard, as Assistant Speaker and look forward to your knowledge, your fairness, and your light touch in being a referee of proceedings in this House. I congratulate also the other Assistant Speaker, Lindsay Tisch; the...
    Greens | 28-10
  • James Shaw’s Maiden Speech
    Tena Koe, Mr Speaker. I would like to take this opportunity to speak a little of the past, the present and the future. The privilege to serve in this Parliament was given to me by all those who gave their...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Govt airs real views on public broadcasting
    An admission by the Government that it is happy to experiment with Pacific and Maori audiences shows just how weak its vision for public broadcasting in New Zealand is, Labour’s Broadcasting spokesperson Kris Faafoi says. “National today admitted it doesn’t...
    Labour | 28-10
  • Does Judith Collins have a get out of jail card?
    Former justice minister Judith Collins appears to have been gifted a get out of jail free card based on the Prime Minister’s answers in Parliament today, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “Judith Collins claimed in an Official Information...
    Labour | 28-10
  • The Final Fifth: The Last Great Task for Progressive New Zealand.
    MOST OF NEW ZEALAND’S social problems are concentrated among those living at the margins of what is otherwise a relatively wealthy society. Recently released international data on child poverty has exposed an acutely stressed social strata encompassing roughly 20 percent...
    The Daily Blog | 31-10
  • Myth Busting Rape Boasters
    In just one week a case that galvanised a nation into discussing rape culture is now being reframed as mischievous teen hi-jinx. One year ago the Roast Busters case came to the attention of the media and the public. This...
    The Daily Blog | 31-10
  • Workers rights weakened by new laws – fightback needed
    The government’s changes to the employment laws are designed to weaken workers bargaining power – at both the individual and collective level.   30-day rule The old law required an employer with a collective agreement in place to employ new...
    The Daily Blog | 31-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Simon Buckingham – Where are Labour Candidates on disability?
    For the few people who know me (hello Mum), I am proudly New Zealand’s first Autistic Spectrum Lawyer, as well as being the very bottom Candidate on the Labour Party List. (64 out of 64). Being honoured like this is...
    The Daily Blog | 31-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Blockade the Budget
    The ‘Independent’ Police Conduct Authority’s report into the policing of student protests in 2012 is a whitewash The report released by the Independent Police Conduct Authority into the policing of student protests in 2012 is a whitewash riddled with inaccuracies....
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • When National claim new anti worker laws provide ‘flexibility’ they mea...
    And so it comes to pass. The first law National ram through as part of their victory march are new anti worker laws they pretend will generate ‘flexibility’. The new law denigrate the unions ability to protect workers and provide...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • City Transport: A Taxing Matter
    This week the prospect of paying tolls on Auckland motorways became a hot topic. (See Mathew Dearnaley:Motorway tolling could hit some hard, NZ Herald, 30 Oct 2014.) As we might expect, the kneejerk response has been quite negative. But, as with...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Open Letter to Amy Adams: Please Reopen The Review Into Sexual Violence Cou...
    Ms Amy Adams, Justice and Courts Minister, Right now in this country it seems that although rape is illegal, it is not being prevented by the agents who uphold the law. It almost feels like rape is only illegal on paper,...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: Does ‘No-Surprises’ Also Apply To TVNZ News?
    When you stand back and look at NZ media outlets, most of them have at least one or two people who attempt to hold the government to account: John Campbell on TV3, Guyon Espiner and others at Radio NZ, David...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Things That Make You Go Hmmmmmmm
    Every so often in politics, a public figure comes out with something so absurd and so outlandish … that it really does just make you go “Hmmmmmmmmmm”. We’re accustomed to this from certain quarters – by mid point through the...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Poverty & inequality don’t need protest marches – they need a riot:...
    The global level of inequality continues to skyrocket… Number of billionaires doubled since financial crisis The number of billionaires has doubled since the start of the financial crisis, according to a major new report from anti-poverty campaigners. According to Oxfam,...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • If Key knows who Rawshark is…
    I’m sorry, what? John Key ‘given Rawshark’s name’The Prime Minister believes he knows who hacked Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater’s computer and produced the source material for Nicky Hager’s Dirty Politics, according to a new edition of a recently published...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Child Poverty stats in NZ
    Child Poverty stats in NZ...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Crimes Act + Police Investigation = WTF
    Just to frame the farce that is the Roastbuster’s investigation and conclusion – here are the parts of the Crime Act http://www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/1961/0043/latest/whole.html#DLM329057  the Roastbusters are proven to have violated – that the police (and some suspects!) themselves acknowledge occurred: Crimes...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Publishing Journalists’ Home Addresses Is A Tactic Of The Right, Not The ...
    I think I’m starting to get rather annoyed with the conduct of some pro-MANA people over this ongoing Parliamentary Services crew complement issue. Yes, we get that there are legitimate issues to be raised with how some political reporters in...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Aucklanders caught between a tarseal-addicted government and a weak mayor
    Len Brown’s proposal for motorway tolls to reduce congestion and provide funding for better public transport is a weak response to a critical issue. The $12 billion dollar shortfall on transport funding he talks about is mainly for projected new...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • A Very Weird Story: Deconstructing Darren Aronofsky’s Noah.
    NOAH is a curious movie. Conceived as a biblical epic, it’s target audience was originally the millions of Americans who regard the Bible as God’s inerrant word. With the sin-filled works of Hollywood forbidden to these true-believers, Christian movie-makers have developed...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • You Can Get Away With Rape In New Zealand
    Jessie Hume with last years petition against rape     The police have sent a strong message today.  In fact they’ve been sending a strong message for a while; a message that our government supports. “You can literally get away...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Roast Buster case – no charges. In the immortal words of NWA…
    Roast Busters case: No prosecutions Police are to make an announcement this afternoon on Operation Clover, the investigation into the “Roast Busters” allegations. The Herald understands the victim has been told that the alleged offenders will not be prosecuted due...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Key’s flag change distraction to cost $26million!
    No. Way. Bid to change NZ flag to cost millions The cost of holding two referendums and consulting on a change of flag has been estimated to be just under $26 million. Look. We all appreciate that the sleepy hobbits...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Why NZ Herald’s Labour Party crocodile tears are so audacious
    The front page the NZ Herald would use if they thought they could get away with it No one can take the recent columns by NZ Herald seriously… John Armstrong: Shadow lingers on National John Roughan: Labour’s leadership vote matters...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • The beginning of the end of Cameron Slater?
    Slater postings on man bizarre, court told A businessman has changed his appearance and had to install extra security at his home after Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater posted his business and personal documents online, he says. Mr Slater has...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • We are a milk power republic and Fonterra our unelected senate
    Wow. Just wow… Deputy mayor says he’ll be sacked South Taranaki deputy mayor Alex Ballantyne says he expects to be sacked because he has spoken out about the impact gasses coming from dumped Fonterra dairy products have had on his...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: “…But *actually* this is about ethics in political-game jo...
    Yesterday, a piece of mine on the recent revelations about Hone Harawira employing several gentlemen either accused or convicted of sex offences was published on The Daily Blog. Predictably, given the fierce loyalty which Hone inspires in his party faithful and...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • Privilege cheque
    There was no race problem in my childhood. Living in central Wellington I was well-insulated from what was going on not so far away. This was the 60s and 70s, where the teachers enjoyed free love in the staff room...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • A brief word on Key’s claim that it will be raining carnage
    Isis will ‘rain carnage on the world’ – John Key Left unchecked Isis would “rain carnage on the world”, Prime Minister John Key says, but he has yet to make a decision on whether New Zealand troops will join a...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • Meanwhile…
    ...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • How does Andrew Little win Labour Leadership and unify the caucus?
    Audrey Young’s excellent column on how the Caucus vote  is shaping up shows how Andrew Little becomes the next leader of the Labour Party. She identifies the factions as the following… Andrew Little 6: Andrew Little, David Cunliffe, Iain Lees Galloway,...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Joe Trinder – Right of response to Curwen
    You have asked that Hone Harawira deserves to explain what happened, how would he explain when his next door neighbour is an alleged sex offender. What explanation can Hone offer he wasn’t involved, Hone had no idea this offending was...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: That Hella-Weird Feeling When You Defend Tova O’Brien
    Oh dear. Yesterday morning I blogged that Hone deserved a chance to explain what exactly had happened as applies his office’s Parliamentary Services crew complement – and, importantly, that we deserve to be able to judge him on the strength of...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • Canadian Green MP warns against harsh anti-terror measures
    Canada’s Green Party has provided a welcome counterpoint to Prime Minister Harper’s call for tougher anti-terrorism laws in the wake of a soldier outside the Canadian Parliament. On October 22, while she was still locked in her parliamentary office, Green...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • When is an asset sale not an asset sale? When it robs from the poor and ste...
    National have turned state housing on its head. At no time during the 2014 election did the Key Government even hint that they were going to privatise 30% of the Housing NZ stock of state homes. Not once. Key even...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part To...
    . . Continued from: Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part Rua) . Bill English comes clean on National’s intentions for HNZ privatisation . On 14 October, in a report on The Daily Blog, I wrote, In...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • The Questions Have Been Asked – They Deserve An Answer
    A few days ago, allegations that had been percolating for some time about Hone Harawira employing three either accused or convicted sex offenders on his Parliamentary pay-roll came to light. (one imprisoned before working for MANA; one who found himself convicted and...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • I have seen one future, and it is bleak
    . . Back in  March 2012, I wrote this story regarding a march to support striking workers at Ports of Auckland. It appears there was some prescience about some of my observations at the time… . | | 18 March...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • US air strike war Key wants us in has killed a civilian a day so far
      The US air strike war that John Key wants us to join has killed a civilian a day so far. From the Washington Post... The United States launched its first airstrikes on militants in Syria on Sept. 23, and has continued...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • The instant Jihad syndrome
    My favourite new term is ‘self-radicalised’ – it suggests the reasons for terrorism are totally divorced from the actions of the West. This need to suddenly ramp up terror laws because of lone wolf, self-radicalised Jihadists seems convenient and counter-productive....
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • We have nothing to fear from Ebola but fear itself
    I suspect most Americans perceive Ebola like this   I can’t work out if the fear being spread within the media about Ebola is deliberate or just ignorance. Yes Ebola is a terrible plague that kills a large percentage of...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Anjum Rahman – “Meritocracy? I wish.”
    I’d like to start by linking to a post I had published at another site in support of Nanaia Mahuta for the Labour Party leadership election.  She has a reasonable chance, given that she already has the endorsement of Te...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • Chocolate milk shortage and creepy Santa? Let’s talk about real news
    Child poverty is still a scarily serious problem in this country and house prices are soaring through the roof to the point where it is simply impossible for the average New Zealander to buy a home. There is also little...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • It’s time to celebrate Kiwi schools and teachers
    Some would have you believe that New Zealand’s schools are in a state of collapse, that your children are not being educated well and that things are going to hell in a hand basket.  That there is no innovation, no...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • Ideological Blitzkrieg – Privatization of state housing, more charter sch...
    Pundits in pundit land will tell you that this Government is boring, that Key is the great pragmatist and that it is his ability to create elegant solutions that keeps him the firm favourite in many Kiwi eyes. This ability...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • Hegemony rules but resistance is fertile
    The Prime Minister is a puppet. Not just our current Prime Minister, but given the forces of multinational globalisation, the role of any head of state, is less as independent actor, and more as a puppet of international trends and...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • An open Letter to Sir Bob Jones: demanding a ‘liveable wage’ is not “...
    How out of touch with reality is Sir Bob Jones? You know, that white dude who invested in privatised SOEs after the selling off of our assets in the eighties and made a ludicrous and disgusting amount of money and is...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • My insecurity about the Security Council
    As I write this (on 24 October) it is international UN Day. Of course, you all knew that already, right? Well, the day celebrates the entry into force of the UN Charter in 1945. With the ratification of this founding...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Catherine Delahunty – Back in That House
    Parliament opened this week and I still find it a very odd place. Most of the people are reasonably courteous and friendly, but the rituals are archaic and the rules around issues like the swearing in oath are oppressive and...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Marae Investigates No More
    TVNZ yesterday announced the closure of their Māori and Pacific programmes department. That means they’ve chosen to stop making Fresh, Tagata Pasifika, Waka Huia and Marae Investigates to let independent producers get their hands on these lucrative contracts. This is...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • BLOGWATCH: An Un-Civil War in Labour, eh?
    Earlier today, my attention was directed to an entry that’s just recently appeared on the Slightly Left of Centre blog. It purports to contain the ‘inside word’ from a highly placed NZF source – which is funny, because I’m pretty sure...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Santanomics 101
    Santanomics could mean a number of things. It could be the study and practice of giving. Or it could mean the study and practice of rampant end-of-year commercialism. However, for me today it is the economics of erectingAuckland’s giant Santa...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • SkyCity boss misleads public over workers lost shifts
    SkyCity CEO Nigel Morrison has defended the employment practices at his company in an “Opinion” piece entitled “Human Capital key to corporate success” in the NZ Herald on Thursday. A number of his claims are misleading, contain only partial truths...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Patrick Gower interviews Social Housing Minister
    Bennett says National could sell off “thousands” of state houses but Housing NZ will still be the “dominant force” in providing social housing in NZ....
    Scoop politics | 01-11
  • The Nation: Lisa Owen interviews Mike Moore & Chris Liddell
    Lisa Owen interviews NZ Ambassador to the US Mike Moore and corporate high-flyer Chris Liddell about the US midterm elections....
    Scoop politics | 01-11
  • David Parker event – the future of work, Sun 2 Nov
    Labour leadership candidate David Parker, an experienced lawyer and businessman as well as a former senior government cabinet minister in the Helen Clark Government, will join three prominent New Zealanders in a panel discussion on Sunday to address...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Roast Busters: Turn Indignation into Action
    People raged about the Roast Buster case. The indignation was justified – it was horrible. “Where were their parents!?” Fair question. I am sure the Roast Busters’ parents and the victims’ parents all wish they had been more proactive in...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Stats NZ only have themselves to blame for postponement
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says Statistics NZ only have themselves to blame for the indefinite postponement of the release of the Food Price Index: November 2014....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • NZ Diversity Survey – benchmarking workplace diversity
    AUT University’s New Zealand Work Research Institute (NZWRI) has released a report on diversity in New Zealand workplaces....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Māori Language (Te Reo Māori) Bill
    Tutehounuku Korako, Chair of the Māori Affairs Committee, is inviting further public submissions on this bill. The closing date for submissions is Friday, 5 December 2014....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • ERA amendments a mixed bag
    The Employment Relations Amendment Act has the potential to put vulnerable workers in a more precarious position, says Equal Opportunities Commissioner, Dr Jackie Blue. However, the commissioner says the right for all to request flexible work hours is...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Sensible Sentencing calls for appeal of judicial activivism
    The Sensible Sentencing Trust is appalled that Justice Jill Mallon has today refused to apply the Life without Parole (LWOP) provisions of the Three Strikes law as enacted by Parliament....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Global Rally against ISIS – for Kobanê – for Humanity, Nov 1
    The New Zealand Kurdish Community will march in solidarity with Kurdistan as part of the “GLOBAL RALLY AGAINST ISIS – FOR KOBANÊ – FOR HUMANITY” on 1 November 2014, 2pm....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Does ‘No-Surprises’ Also Apply To TVNZ News?
    When you stand back and look at NZ media outlets, most of them have at least one or two people who attempt to hold the government to account: John Campbell on TV3, Guyon Espiner and others at Radio NZ, David...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Safer roads are better for everyone
    Recent pedestrian versus vehicle incidents highlight the real issues being addressed by delegates as the 2Walk and Cycle conference concludes....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Law change creates more flexible labour market
    The Employment Relations Amendment Act, passed yesterday, will bring new flexibility to the labour market and will reduce the ability of unions to organise and to recruit....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Bumper ANZ profits mean no excuse for insecure hours
    A big rise in profits at New Zealand's largest bank needs to be reflected in a better pay offer and more security around hours of work, the bank workers’ union said today....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Count down to lowered alcohol limit
    With just a month to go until a new lower alcohol limit for adult drivers comes into effect, Police and road safety agencies are reminding drivers of the impending change....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • WorkSafe Supports Forestry Review Findings
    WorkSafe NZ says the Independent Forestry Safety Review has clearly identified the problems facing an industry in which ten workers were killed last year. “The Review’s analysis matches our own view and leaves no doubt about the need for comprehensive,...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CTU welcomes forestry review recommendations
    The CTU is welcoming the today's release of the independent forestry safety review panel findings. "These recommendations must be implemented to ensure that everything possible is done to make forestry safer." CTU President, Helen Kelly said....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Activists will confront animal abusers
    Today animal rights activists will confront a group of wealth advisers who want to build the biggest egg factory-farm in New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Turia: Women’s Refuge Conference 2014
    This is a milestone moment in my life. This will be my last official address as Co-leader of the Maori Party. On Saturday night at our Hui-a-Tau, I will be standing down from that role and enabling a new co-leader,...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Rodeo Code of Welfare ‘Sick Joke’
    Animal advocacy organisation SAFE says the revised Code of Welfare for Rodeos just released is nothing but a sick joke. “Rodeo animals are goaded, tormented and forced to endure needless suffering and gross mistreatment, all for the sake of so-called...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Conservative Party applauds binding referenda on flag
    The Conservative Party are congratulating the Government on the decision to hold two binding referendums to decide the fate of New Zealand’s flag – and believes it will pave the way for binding referenda to form part of New Zealand...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Walk the Talk – Opposing violence against women
    Soroptimist International of Auckland have organised a walk on 22 November from Silo Park at the Wynyard Quarter through the Viaduct and back to Silo Park, to show their opposition to violence against women. This event hopes to raise awareness...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Recommendations on the Design of Pecuniary Penalties
    The Law Commission has reviewed the use of pecuniary penalties as a regulatory tool. Pecuniary penalties are financial penalties that policymakers are increasingly opting to use in place of criminal sanctions in order to punish and deter misconduct in...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Every worker will be affected by employment law changes
    Every worker will feel the effects of the government’s new employment laws and should join a union if they want to maintain and increase their wages and conditions, says New Zealand’s largest private sector union, the EPMU....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Shameful attack on all workers
    The Government has passed the Employment Relations Amendment Act slashing the rights of all Kiwi workers. “These changes are shameful. New Zealand now has some of the worst employment protections in the OECD. It is embarrassing that a country which...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Unnecessary law changes more to do with ideology
    The government’s employment law changes are simply ideological and are at odds with its approach in the related areas of health and safety and immigration law, FIRST Union said tonight....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CTU Runanga calls on iwi leaders
    Maori workers are calling on iwi leaders to speak out against the employment law changes expected to go through today. “Iwi leaders have previously spoken out when workers in Aotearoa have been under attack, we believe they should do so...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Educating children not the best solution to alcohol harm
    Alcohol Healthwatch says we need to look beyond educating children and young people to address deeply embedded attitudes and behaviours concerning alcohol....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • New code of welfare for rodeos released
    New standards to strengthen the animal welfare requirements for rodeos have been issued today by the Minister for Primary Industries, Nathan Guy....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • IPCA report riddle with inaccuracies, say students
    A report by the Independent Police Conduct Authority into the policing of student protests in 2012 is riddled with inaccuracies, say students who laid the original complaint with the IPCA....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CT v The Queen – indecency convictions quashed
    This summary is provided to assist in the understanding of the Court’s judgment. It does not comprise part of the reasons for that judgment. The full judgment with reasons is the only authoritative document. The full text of the judgment...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Rameka v The Queen – murder convictions quashed
    This summary is provided to assist in the understanding of the Court’s judgment. It does not comprise part of the reasons for that judgment. The full judgment with reasons is the only authoritative document. The full text of the judgment...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Auckland Council Out of Control
    Responding to the NZ Herald article that some Auckland households will face a rates rise of up to 9.6 per cent next year, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says: “Len Brown’s pledge to cap rates rises at 2.5 per...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Stats NZ staff escalate action with ‘no more meetings’ rule
    Statistics NZ staff have voted to escalate their ongoing industrial action in an effort to get Stats NZ back to the bargaining table with a reasonable offer. The staff, who are members of the Public Service Association (PSA), have been...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Rape Crisis calls for changes to criminal justice system
    Wellington Rape Crisis has added its voice to the public outcry following the announcement that there will be no charges in the teen rape gang case. Butterworth says the decision not to lay charges will not have been a surprise...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Police action justified in Blockade the Budget demonstration
    Police actions in dealing with a demonstration in Central Auckland known as Blockade the Budget on 1 June 2012 were justified and appropriate, an Independent Police Conduct Authority report released today found....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • NZDF Joins with Australia to Commemorate WWI Centenary
    A contingent of New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel will join their Australian counterparts at Australia’s first major commemoration of the First World War centenary in Albany, Western Australia this weekend....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Reserve Bank should reduce interest rate
    “The Reserve Bank should be reducing its policy interest rate, the OCR”, says CTU Economist Bill Rosenberg in response to the Bank’s announcement today that it is not increasing it....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • 2015 Stout Fellow will write about Māori & Criminal Justice
    Kim Workman, founder and advocate for the Robson Hanan Trust, which administers the Rethinking Crime and Punishment and Justspeak initiatives, has been awarded the 2015 John David Stout Fellowship at Victoria University....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • What John Key thought about ‘dirty politics’
    On September 20, John Key swept to victory to become one of New Zealand’s most successful and popular Prime Ministers. Rocked by scandal, the 2014 election campaign was one of the most brutal – and riveting – in recent history....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Trade Deal Threatens Farmers and Food Businesses
    The secret Trans Pacific Partnership negotiations are a direct threat to food businesses and farmers, and a moratorium on the release of GE crops must be enshrined in law before the TPP is signed....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • CTU announces election of new Secretary
    The contested election for the position of CTU Secretary has been won by Sam Huggard. Sam officially takes office on Monday 1 December 2014. Sam has worked in the union movement and brings a wealth of experience and a commitment...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Kim Workman awarded 2015 J.D. Stout Fellowship
    The Victoria University of Wellington 2015 J.D. Stout Fellowship, funded by the Stout Trust, has been awarded to justice reform advocate Kim Workman. Mr Workman (Ngati Kahungungu ki Wairarapa, Rangitaane) is well known for his work on criminal justice,...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • TPPA causing concern
    Concern over the secretive Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) negotiations is being expressed in two public meetings over the next week; one at a presentation on 5th November by former councillor Robin Gwynn to the Napier City Council, the...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Kiwis rally to demand justice for ‘Roast Buster’ survivors
    Over 1,500 kiwis have rallied to demand justice after the announcement of the NZ Police decision not to lay charges in the ‘Roast Busters’ saga....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • New employment law will hurt the most vulnerable NZers
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says changes to the Employment Relations Act, expected to be passed in Parliament tonight, will hurt vulnerable workers and their families more than anyone....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Consultation to close on proposed place names
    The New Zealand Geographic Board (NZGB) Ngā Pou Taunaha o Aotearoa today advised that only one month remains before public consultation closes for 18 name proposals for geographic features and places around Te Ika ā Māui (the North Island)....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Operation Clover – Statement from Police Commissioner
    I have taken a close interest in this investigation and I am confident police have conducted a thorough and professional enquiry in what has been a challenging and complex case. The Operation Clover team has ensured that victims have been...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Better policy would have protected children from recession
    Child Poverty Action Group says an international report released by UNICEF today shows good policy can protect and improve child well-being, even during a recession....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Outcome of Operation Clover investigation
    Police have completed a multi-agency investigation, Operation Clover, into the activities of a group calling themselves “The Roast Busters”. The 12 month enquiry focused on incidents involving allegations of sexual offending against a number of girls...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
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