web analytics

Amazing coincidences

Written By: - Date published: 2:07 pm, November 23rd, 2010 - 35 comments
Categories: accountability, john key - Tags: , ,

You remember John Key’s ‘blind trust’ that turned out not to be so blind. Key denied all but anyone could easily see into the ‘blind trust’. Key certainly knew of his wine and dairy interests, giving him a conflict of interest he failed to declare. Now, after the furor, the ‘blind trust’ has sold the shares. Funny things, coincidences.

The ‘blind trust’ scandal broke in May of this year. We found out that Key had been participating in government decisions affecting the wine industry without declaring his large interest in a winery. Despite this interest being held by a supposedly blind trust, a clearly pissed PM knew all about it in a taped interview.

Then there was his interest in the Dairy Investment Fund. Like the interest in Highwater winery, the shares in the Dairy Investment Fund had been transferred to the ‘blind trust’ but to find out what the trust held all you had to do was enter its name, Whitechapel Ltd, on the Companies Office website. Key had sat on important government decisions that benefited the Diary Investment Fund too.

It was while researching one of these decisions (the subject of a future post) that I went to double check on the ‘blind trust’s holdings.

Funnily enough the holdings are gone. Whitechapel sold the Dairy Investment Fund shares on July 19th and the Highwater shares on August 18th.

So, Key had owned these shares for years (over six years for the dairy shares, two years for the winery) and then they are suddenly sold off after the revelation of the conflicts of interest that Key denies exist because he claims he doesn’t know what’s in his blind trust. Odd that the trustees should make those decisions when they did, if it were true that there’s no conflicts.

Also in my research, I discovered that Key used to be the major shareholder in another dairy company along with the trustee of his supposedly blind trust. Yep, funny things, coincidences.

35 comments on “Amazing coincidences ”

  1. toad 1

    If you have time for this sort of research Marty, how about some more on the Jenny Shipley, Sammy Wong, Pansy Wong connection. I’m sure there’s more to that story than we have heard so far.

    And it would be very interesting indeed to learn what Shipley has been using her international travel perk for since she stepped down as PM, although given the Parliamentary Service doesn’t come under the OIA that’s not something any amount of research could find out unless there is a whistle-blower in the Parliamentary Service who is prepared to spill the beans.

    • higherstandard 1.1

      It wouldn’t be interesting, it would be nauseating.

      We’re such a pathetically soft cock little country that no one has the balls to tell these pricks that their perks are gone and that we’ve legislated so they can’t sue for recompense.

      Another sickening old boys/girls club.

      • Robert Atack 1.1.1

        Yeah what these creeps are doing, should be classed as treasonable, and they should be seen as the treasonous bastards that they are, Key knows and understands money, yet he is running NZ like a Greek conman, selling us to his mates @$200 + million a week.
        Lets all join the Europeans on Dec 7th and withdraw all our money from the banks. If they see us doing it before them, NZ could be the world leaders in sticking it to Key and his mates. … oh that would mean a % of the idiot masses caring … sorry forgot, they don’t, they vote for the clowns instead.
        As George Carlin says -Fuck Hope – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4W9Cs6KPTus
        And don’t vote http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xIraCchPDhk
        ‘hope’ it is ok posting these links.

    • toad 1.2

      I meant “stepped down as an MP”. She didn’t step down as PM – she got booted out.

  2. higherstandard 2

    Re the another dairy company – i think this has always been out in the open.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/john-key-the-unauthorised-biography/news/article.cfm?c_id=1502247&objectid=10523316

    “Haunui Dairy

    Another dairy investment company. Key owns 64 per cent of the company, which is being wound up. Haunui Dairy owned and operated a 200ha farm milking 650 cows at Tapanui, in Clutha. The company’s original owners were Key, dairy entrepreneur Geoff Taylor, ANZ National rural banking head Charlie Graham and farmers Craig Burgess and Jean Lawson.

    Burgess and Lawson had been sharemilkers on the farm when the previous owner decided to sell. They took a stake of about 40 per cent, and entered into an equity partnership arrangement with the other investors. The company owned the land, improvements, cows and machinery.

    Burgess and Lawson later sold their stake to the others. Lawson says they met Key once and found him “very nice, down to earth”. It had been a good arrangement for them, she said. The farm was bought in 2000-2001 for $3.4 million and was sold in 2006 (with a settlement date of May last year) for $5.4 million.

    With the sale of the farm, Haunui Dairy has been placed into liquidation. The liquidators say all machinery has been sold and most of the company’s affairs have been tidied up. No debts are owed, and the liquidator is simply waiting for the IRD to issue a small refund (about $900) before the company is officially wound up.”

  3. felix 3

    Marty, you might want to check that “doesn’t drink” link – it pretty clearly says that he does drink.

    Great post though.

  4. tc 4

    No surprises here and loving the intelligent/practical responses to our credit downgrading from a bloke who made millions dealing in international markets that react to these sorts of actions.

    Much like the blind trusts it’s all in the past and he can’t recall a thing.

    We are an international laughing stock with sideshow and blinglish sailing us towards oblivion.

  5. vto 5

    How is it that Key can get away with this bullshit? And what about Carter? and Creech? and the list goes on.

    How can government ministers make decisions on issues they have a vested financial interest in? It is completely and utterly wrong and it leads to just one conclusion…

    New Zealand’s government is corrupt – simple as that. Never thought I would say that but it is the ONLY conclusion given their circumstances and their actions. Some sort of judiciary action must be required surely.

    • insider 5.1

      So ministers can’t make any decisions on housing, cars, boats, clothing, farming etc etc? Pretty impossible standard you impose there. Only indigents should apply to be MPs in future eh?

      • felix 5.1.1

        Are you trying to equate owning a car with, say, owning a car sales yard?

        It sounds like you’re having trouble with the actual concept of a “conflict of interest” as opposed to disagreeing on the existence of one.

        • insider 5.1.1.1

          No, and you and marty and vto seem to have issues with the concept of degrees of conflict as exemplified by “How can government ministers make decisions on issues they have a vested financial interest in? It is completely and utterly wrong…”

          You don’t seem to think owning a car is a vested financial interest. Well for me it is as it is the second most valuable thing I own.

          But I don’t think the existence of a potential conflict is always an issue – it is the relative level of risk that is important, and the specificity of the conflict.

          Using your car yard example, if a rule affecting the profitability of car yards was being made by me it would be a clearer conflict if I operated the yard than if i just owned the land underneath it. But the risk would increase if I owned a series of such properties even if I didn’t run the yard.

          Blanket statements that any vested financial interest is akin to opening the door to corruption ignore the subtleties of what real conflicts of interest are and lead to stupid ‘where there;s smoke there must be fire’ type posts as Marty’s.

          • felix 5.1.1.1.1

            Yeah ‘cos the post was about how Key has a vested interest in eating steak & cheese pies and using grapeseed oil.

            Oh no hang on that’s bullshit – it’s about him owning dairy companies and vineyards.

            You’re the one having trouble with degree.

  6. tc 6

    ‘Some sort of judiciary action must be required surely.’

    yes after they’ve passed some more ‘laws’ under urgency which sees black become white or shades of grey it’ll be for the AG to decide, corruption as we knew it declared standard operating procedure and parliamant only sits when the weathers not so great in Hawaii.

  7. Jeremy Harris 7

    I’d like to see the cabinet manual amended so all cabinet members interests are listed and an independent thrid party (Clerk of the House maybe) decide if you should be recused…

    • Lanthanide 7.1

      Seems the only sensible way to do it.

    • Kevin Welsh 7.2

      I would like to see something even simpler Jeremy.

      If you decide to take the route of Public Service, then you divest yourself of your business interests. This is the only way you can be seen as having no conflict of interest.

      • insider 7.2.1

        Why stop there Kevin? Why only business interests? Why not say Labour members can have no legitimate views on union issues because of the almost obligatory membership of and alliance with unions. Can you imagine the furore if they were forced to renounce their membership of unions?

        • higherstandard 7.2.1.1

          Perhaps we could lobotomise and neuter all elected representatives ?

        • felix 7.2.1.2

          “Why stop there Kevin? Why only business interests? Why not say Labour members can have no legitimate views on union issues…”

          Because the object of this exercise is to ensure that elected officials are not directly profiting from the decisions they’re supposed to be making on behalf of the rest of us.

          Sheesh, it’s not that difficult a concept innit?

          • insider 7.2.1.2.1

            Kevin said “This is the only way you can be seen as having no conflict of interest.”

            He said no conflict of interest at all, not just financial benefit as a business owner. Conflicts occur everywhere; it’s unavoidable when you begin to own assets. Just because you own a house, shouldn’t mean you can’t get involved in discussions on rules about house ownership even though you have a material interest.

            Adn of course none of this covers the future advantage that changing a rule might give. So it’s how you manage conflicts that counts, not trying to eliminate them.

            • Kevin Welsh 7.2.1.2.1.1

              The article was about COI from a financial standpoint and that was what I commented on. Don’t put words in my mouth Insider.

            • felix 7.2.1.2.1.2

              insider, that’s a feeble man of straw you’re attacking.

              When you’ve finished perhaps you’d care to comment on the topic at hand.

      • insider 7.2.2

        AN asset register means that the people can see and judge for themselves whether there is any conflict. They did exactly that over Marty’s so called scandal and demonstrated they just don’t accept that Key had done anything unusual or had a COI. No doubt Marty’s next scandal will be another H Fee fizzer to all but the Keystoned Cops

        • Kevin Welsh 7.2.2.1

          Unless, of course, you have a so-called ‘Blind Trust’. Then there would be no reason for an Asset Register, Insider.

          • insider 7.2.2.1.1

            No because a blind trust is a management tool – it would be foolish to assume you have no knowledge of what was initially in the trust, because it would be your actions that created the trust and transferred assets into it. That of course may change over time as assets move. So listing the initial assets of such a trust is important.

      • Vicky32 7.2.3

        An excellent idea, Kevin!
        Deb

Links to post

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Twenty highlights of 2020
    As we welcome in the new year, our focus is on continuing to keep New Zealanders safe and moving forward with our economic recovery. There’s a lot to get on with, but before we say a final goodbye to 2020, here’s a quick look back at some of the milestones ...
    2 weeks ago

  • Cook Islanders to resume travel to New Zealand
    The Prime Minister of New Zealand Jacinda Ardern and the Prime Minister of the Cook Islands Mark Brown have announced passengers from the Cook Islands can resume quarantine-free travel into New Zealand from 21 January, enabling access to essential services such as health. “Following confirmation of the Cook Islands’ COVID ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Supporting communities and landowners to grow employment opportunities
    Jobs for Nature funding is being made available to conservation groups and landowners to employ staff and contractors in a move aimed at boosting local biodiversity-focused projects, Conservation Minister Kiritapu Allan has announced. It is estimated some 400-plus jobs will be created with employment opportunities in ecology, restoration, trapping, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Border exception for some returning international tertiary students
    The Government has approved an exception class for 1000 international tertiary students, degree level and above, who began their study in New Zealand but were caught offshore when border restrictions began. The exception will allow students to return to New Zealand in stages from April 2021. “Our top priority continues ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Tiwai deal gives time for managed transition
    Today’s deal between Meridian and Rio Tinto for the Tiwai smelter to remain open another four years provides time for a managed transition for Southland. “The deal provides welcome certainty to the Southland community by protecting jobs and incomes as the region plans for the future. The Government is committed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New member for APEC Business Advisory Council
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has appointed Anna Curzon to the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC). The leader of each APEC economy appoints three private sector representatives to ABAC. ABAC provides advice to leaders annually on business priorities. “ABAC helps ensure that APEC’s work programme is informed by business community perspectives ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Govt’s careful economic management recognised
    The Government’s prudent fiscal management and strong policy programme in the face of the COVID-19 global pandemic have been acknowledged by the credit rating agency Fitch. Fitch has today affirmed New Zealand’s local currency rating at AA+ with a stable outlook and foreign currency rating at AA with a positive ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Additional actions to keep COVID-19 out of NZ
    The Government is putting in place a suite of additional actions to protect New Zealand from COVID-19, including new emerging variants, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “Given the high rates of infection in many countries and evidence of the global spread of more transmissible variants, it’s clear that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • 19 projects will clean up and protect waterways
    $36 million of Government funding alongside councils and others for 19 projects Investment will clean up and protect waterways and create local jobs Boots on the ground expected in Q2 of 2021 Funding part of the Jobs for Nature policy package A package of 19 projects will help clean up ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand Government acknowledges 175th anniversary of Battle of Ruapekapeka
    The commemoration of the 175th anniversary of the Battle of Ruapekapeka represents an opportunity for all New Zealanders to reflect on the role these conflicts have had in creating our modern nation, says Associate Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage Kiri Allan. “The Battle at Te Ruapekapeka Pā, which took ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Better care for babies with tongue-tie
    Babies born with tongue-tie will be assessed and treated consistently under new guidelines released by the Ministry of Health, Associate Minister of Health Dr Ayesha Verrall announced today. Around 5% to 10% of babies are born with a tongue-tie, or ankyloglossia, in New Zealand each year. At least half can ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Prisoner disorder event at Waikeria Prison over
    The prisoner disorder event at Waikeria Prison is over, with all remaining prisoners now safely and securely detained, Corrections Minister Kelvin Davis says. The majority of those involved in the event are members of the Mongols and Comancheros. Five of the men are deportees from Australia, with three subject to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Pre-departure COVID-19 test for travellers from the UK and the US from 15 January
    Travellers from the United Kingdom or the United States bound for New Zealand will be required to get a negative test result for COVID-19 before departing, and work is underway to extend the requirement to other long haul flights to New Zealand, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins confirmed today. “The new PCR test requirement, foreshadowed last ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • PM congratulates New Year Honour recipients
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has added her warm congratulations to the New Zealanders recognised for their contributions to their communities and the country in the New Year 2021 Honours List. “The past year has been one that few of us could have imagined. In spite of all the things that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • David Parker congratulates New Year 2021 Honours recipients
    Attorney-General and Minister for the Environment David Parker has congratulated two retired judges who have had their contributions to the country and their communities recognised in the New Year 2021 Honours list. The Hon Tony Randerson QC has been appointed a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • New Year’s Honours highlights outstanding Pacific leadership through challenging year
    Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio says the New Year’s Honours List 2021 highlights again the outstanding contribution made by Pacific people across Aotearoa. “We are acknowledging the work of 13 Pacific leaders in the New Year’s Honours, representing a number of sectors including health, education, community, sports, the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Supporting seniors to embrace technology
    The Government’s investment in digital literacy training for seniors has led to more than 250 people participating so far, helping them stay connected. “COVID-19 has meant older New Zealanders are showing more interest in learning how to use technology like Zoom and Skype so they can to keep in touch ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Additional COVID-19 tests for returnees from higher risk countries
    New virus variants and ongoing high rates of diseases in some countries prompt additional border protections Extra (day zero or day one) test to be in place this week New ways of reducing risk before people embark on travel being investigated, including pre-departure testing for people leaving the United Kingdom ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago