web analytics


Written By: - Date published: 8:24 am, December 1st, 2012 - 18 comments
Categories: Ethics, Media, national, politicans - Tags: , ,

It appears that Murray McCully is up to his clique-ish Murrayknowsbest ways again.

He’s appointed (on Wednesday with a quiet press release in the middle of hobbit fever) his old mate, and Sky political lobbyist Tony O’Brien to the board of Antarctic New Zealand.

What’s that you say?  Lobbying doesn’t have much to do with our interests on the white continent and its surrounding waters?  Neither does Pay TV?

Well apparently Murray feels that Tony will be able to “raise awareness”.

This government’s already appointed the other half of Mark Unsworth‘s lobby firm Barrie Saunders to the board of TVNZ, and former lobbyist Richard Griffin as chairman of Radio New Zealand, so they obviously like to keep their National-leaning lobbyists looked after.  That’s before you get onto them appointing John Key’s electorate Chair onto NZ On Air‘s board; former English/Brash chief of staff Richard Long onto TVNZ’s board; Kerry Prendergast to the Environmental Protection Agency…  So we have a history developing here, particularly among media…

Sky has had a very good ride from this government, as they’ve effectively forced TVNZ to cosy up, and deliver the likes of the Heartland channel Sky only.  Broadcast regulation (like so much with this government) is hands-off.

Now Sky will have someone – who was the network’s executive for its election coverage – working on the inside of government (while still very active lobbying).

It just all gets a bit cosy sometimes…

(Still, at least his Chief Executive got a pay rise of $40,000 in a disastrous leaky year as they cut 79 jobs – so nice as he’s “never done a job for the money”…)


18 comments on “Cronyism”

  1. marsman 1

    And then there is also this from Tom Frewen at SCOOP:-

    “Richard Long Gets Another Tough Job
    Friday, 30 November 2012, 12:24 pm
    Article: Tom Frewen

    Although Foreign Affairs Minister, Murray McCully, publicly announced the appointment of his friend, SKY TV lobbyist Tony O’Brien, to the Antarctic New Zealand management board on Wednesday, he kept quiet about appointing another media friend, former Dominion editor Richard Long, as chairman of the New Zealand-France Friendship Fund in February.

    Created in 1991 during an official visit by prime minister Michel Rocard, the fund finances projects that promote “close and friendly relations between the citizens of France and New Zealand”. The latest annual report shows the fund approved projects worth $195,000 and paid out $11,000 in operating expenses in 2011.

    Projects are evaluated at a joint meeting in Paris in June. Mr Long, who does not speak French, is expected to travel to the French capital to attend his first meeting as chairman next year.”

    And what other sneaky appointments has McCully made. Sneakery seems to be the name of the game for NAct.

  2. Chalupa Batman 2


    Happens with every party

    • OneTrack 2.1

      It is only ok when the left does it.

      • bbfloyd 2.1.1

        Chubby boy & one rut…… have you run out of ideas for making silly noises? …Both those efforts qualify as “claytons” comments….as in the comment you make when your mind is vacant of any relevant thought…..

        • Chalupa Batman

          Whatever big bitch, Labour did it, Nationals doing it and no doubt when Labour get back in they’ll do it again

          • McFlock

            Yeah, putting Bolger in charge of Kiwibank was Labour party communist cronyism at its worst. /sarc

            • Chalupa Batman

              Kinda like Cullen getting a job with nzpost I suppose

              • McFlock

                lol fair call, although I’d be intrigued to see the relative comparison between the parties. Especially as Cullen was a Simon Power appointment, not Brownlee or Tolley.

                • Chalupa Batman

                  But it does reinforce my point that Labour and National are very similar in certain respects

                • Fortran


                  Makes no difference which Minister actually make an appointment – Cabinet has to agree first as they did for Bolger and Cullen respectively.

                  • Macro

                    “Cabinet has to agree first as they did for Bolger and Cullen respectively”

                    not when it’s this crowd.

                    just have a look at the history of their shonkey appointments to see what I mean.

                    But “I’m just lovin it” is happy with that.

          • muzza

            CB – Its a strange thing eh, people just can’t understand that the “left/right” is a mirage…

            They’re all in it together, in case its not apparent enough yet!

            NZ is corrupted/broken so far beyond repair, and this article highlighting the appointment of T O’B to the Antarctica Board NZ, only confirms that comments I have made about ChCh, and Antarctica are now filtering out into the public will be in the ball park, not that most will make the link as usual!

          • John Drinnan

            Appointing mates of course – but did Labour do it with currently active lobbyists?

            • insider

              You don’t count union reps as lobbyists?

              • kousei

                Sounds a bit like the playground they did it so I can do it. You could split straws about right left apointees forever. I think the point is that corruption is wrong. Anyone who is a professional representative of corporate interest has no business in any government appointed positions whatever bloody flag they are waving. A scumbag remains a scumbag.

  3. John Drinnan 3

    The original story was in the cruel dark pages of the allegedly tory apologist NZ herald,

    • kousei 3.1

      I for one am damn glad that at least one tory apologist has an eye on this sort of stuff. This reeks with the corrupt stench of weasel back room deals and flagrant abuse of power tempered by the fecund slime of flagrant greedy entitlement. What gets my goat is this type of dishonesty does not make the wider public bubble and seethe with anger. The arrogance, ignorance and naked sociopathic ambition of many appointees is open and unashamed. I don’t care where people imagine they reside on a political spectrum. If there is an abuse of power then that is indecent and in a decent society this must be addressed. Where is the outrage?

  4. kousei 4

    If the system rewards an a/immoral unethical approach then the players probably believe themselves that they have no conflict of interests. If they ACT in their mates and their own interests then they probably think they have just been incredibly clever.

Links to post

Recent Comments

Recent Posts


  • A charge on plastic bags – debunking some myths
    The launch of my Members’ Bill last week, which would introduce a 15 cent charge on single-use plastic bags at the check-out, has generated a lot of comment on mainstream and social media. From The Paul Henry Show at the ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    1 day ago
  • National’s $1trillion property sandcastle
    The National government's failure to fix the housing crisis has seen the ballooning and unsustainable property market touch the $1 trillion mark, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. "Labour wants an economy that creates high wage work that is based ...
    1 day ago
  • Government failure on housing crisis drives Reserve Bank to add tools
    If the Government was delivering a comprehensive plan to fix the housing crisis, it is unlikely that the Reserve Bank would be continuing to pursue debt to income limits for lending for housing, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. ...
    2 days ago
  • International embarrassment for NZ likely over National’s failure to protect Maui dolphin
    New Zealanders who care about Maui dolphin should prepare to feel embarrassed: the Government is about to be put to shame on the international stage for its lack of action to protect Maui’s dolphin. The International Whaling Commissions’ 66th Biennial ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    4 days ago
  • Why don’t we spend $1b to keep people out of jail, rather than spending it on keeping them in?
    Earlier this week, Corrections Minister Judith Collins announced the government’s ‘solution’ to our burgeoning prison population. It seems that most, if not all, of Bill English’s hard-won surplus is going to disappear into another round of prison-building.  That must be ...
    GreensBy David Clendon
    6 days ago
  • PKE Ship Sent Packing – Not Too Soon
    It is appropriate that the palm kernel expeller (PKE) ship off Tauranga has been sent packing. For weeks I have been saying this ship needed to be sent away, but it seems as if MPI has been trying to find ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning
    6 days ago
  • Do you #LoveSnow?
    I was a lucky kid. When I was about five or six my mum and auntie took me up to Whakapapa on Mt Ruapehu and taught me to ski. As a young kid I thought there was no bigger ...
    GreensBy James Shaw
    6 days ago
  • Awa Kairangi/Hutt River – Swimmable?
    On Thursday night I hosted a great swimmable rivers meeting organised by the local Greens in Heretaunga (Hutt Valley). It was great to see about 70 people attend and engage in the topic. We were welcomed by Te Atiawa representative ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    6 days ago
  • September benefit figures disappointing
    The Government is out of touch with the reality that fewer people are going off the benefit and into employment or study, says Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni.  “The quarterly benefit numbers for September are concerning. They show that ...
    6 days ago
  • MFAT officials refuse to back Prime Minister on Saudi sheep claims
    An Ombudsman’s interim decision released about the existence or otherwise of legal advice on the multimillion dollar Saudi sheep deal shows MFAT has failed to back up the Prime Minister’s claims on the matter, says Labour MP David Parker. “The ...
    6 days ago
  • Barry Coates on his first weeks in Parliament
    Week one in Parliament has been quite an occasion. I would like to share the experience. I had given up on the prospect of getting into Parliament before the election and had been enjoying the diverse work I was doing ...
    GreensBy Barry Coates
    6 days ago
  • Nats still planning to take Housing NZ dividend
    Housing New Zealand’s Statement of Performance Expectations shows that the National Government intends to pocket $237m from Housing New Zealand this year including a $54m “surplus distribution”, despite promises that dividends would stop, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “After ...
    1 week ago
  • Parliament must restore democracy for Ecan
    Parliament has a chance to return full democracy to Canterbury with the drawing of a member’s bill that would replace the Government’s appointed commissioners with democratically elected councillors, says Labour’s Canterbury Spokesperson Megan Woods. “In 2010, the Government stripped Cantabrians ...
    1 week ago
  • Police struggle to hold the line in Northland
    Labour’s promise of a thousand extra police will go a long way to calming the fears of people in the North, says the MP for Te Tai Tokerau Kelvin Davis.  “Police are talking about the Northland towns of Kaitaia and ...
    1 week ago
  • Vote Sooty Shearwater/Tītī for Bird of the Year
    Sooty shearwater (Puffinus griseus) are amazing and deserve your vote in Forest and Bird’s Bird of the Year competition.  They make one of the longest known bird migrations, flying an annual round trip of 64,000 kms across the entire Pacific ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    1 week ago
  • Urgent action on agriculture emissions needed
    Immediate action is required to curb agricultural emissions is the loud and clear message from Climate change & agriculture: Understanding the biological greenhouse gases report released today by the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment, says Labour’s Climate Change spokesperson Megan ...
    1 week ago
  • Super Fund climate change approach a good start
    Labour Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson and Climate Change Spokesperson Dr Megan Woods have welcomed the adoption of a climate change investment strategy by the New Zealand Super Fund. “This is a good start. It is a welcome development that the Super ...
    1 week ago
  • Energy use going in the wrong direction
    New data out this week from Statistics NZ paints a concerning picture of energy use across the economy under this National Government. You won’t be surprised to hear that there is some seriously worrying information here about how dirty our ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    1 week ago
  • Raising the age the right thing to do
    The announcement today that the Government will leave the door open for young people leaving state care still means there is a lot of work to do, says Labour's Spokesperson for Children, Jacinda Ardern "The Government indicated some time ago ...
    1 week ago
  • Junior Doctors go on Strike
    Thousands of junior doctors took strike action for 24 hours this week for better working conditions and safer working hours.  The Green Party supports their cause, and particularly their claims to reduce the number of days worked from up to ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    1 week ago
  • Coleman plays down the plight of junior doctors
    Junior doctors are crucial to our health services and the industrial action that continues tomorrow shows how desperately the Government has underfunded health, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King.  “Jonathan Coleman’s claim that he has not seen objective evidence of ...
    1 week ago
  • Inflation piles pressure on National and Reserve Bank
    While many households will welcome the low inflation figures announced today, they highlight serious questions for both the National government and the Reserve Bank, Labour’s  Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson said.  "While low inflation will be welcomed by many, the ...
    1 week ago
  • Officials warned Nat’s $1b infrastructure fund ineffective and rushed
    Treasury papers show the Government rushed out an infrastructure announcement officials told them risked making no significant difference to housing supply, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford.  “Like so much of National’s housing policy, this was another poll-driven PR initiative ...
    1 week ago
  • More cops needed to tackle P
    New Police statistics obtained in Written Questions show John Key is losing his War on P, highlighting the need for more Police, says Opposition Leader Andrew Little.  “New Zealanders expect serious action on P but today’s hodgepodge of half-measures won’t ...
    1 week ago
  • Strengthening our relationship with the Rātana movement
    It was a privilege to visit Rātana Pā last week with fellow Greens’ Co-leader James Shaw, our Māori Caucus and senior staff to meet with the leaders of te iwi mōrehu, to strengthen the ties between the Green Party and ...
    GreensBy Metiria Turei
    1 week ago
  • MBIE docs show country needs KiwiBuild, not Key’s pretend “building boom”
    John Key’s spin that New Zealand is in a building boom does not change the massive shortfall in building construction as new MBIE papers reveal, says Labour Party housing spokesperson Phil Twyford.  “We can fix the housing crisis, by the ...
    1 week ago
  • 1 in 7 Akl houses now going to big property speculators
    Speculators are running riot in the Auckland housing market making life tougher for first home buyers, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford.  Newly released data from Core Logic shows a 40 per cent increase in the share of house sales ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Disconnected thinking dirties the water
    Iain Rabbitts’ belief that drinking water quality, charging for water use and the land use that leads to water quality degradation should be treated separately is part of the problem we have right now in this country. The connection is ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    2 weeks ago
  • Report back from Hands Off Our Tamariki hui
    This week I attended a hui in Otaki organised by Hands Off Our Tamariki about the proposed reforms to the Child Young Persons and their Families Act. Moana Jackson and Paora Moyle spoke.  They expressed deep, profound concern about the proposed ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour mourns passing of Helen Kelly
    Helen Kelly was a passionate advocate for working New Zealanders and for a safe and decent working life, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says.  “Helen Kelly spent her adult life fighting for the right of every working person to ...
    2 weeks ago
  • National’s visionless immigration policy
    National’s recent immigration announcement is a continuation of the visionless approach to government that it has displayed in the last three terms. Rather than using the levers of government to implement a sustainable immigration policy that benefits new and current ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    2 weeks ago
  • Andrew Little: Speech to the Police Association Conference 2016
    Police Association delegates, Association life members and staff, representatives from overseas jurisdictions. Thank you for inviting me here today. The Police Association has become a strong and respected voice for Police officers and for policing in New Zealand. There is ...
    2 weeks ago
  • 1,000 more police for safer communities
    Labour will fund an extra 1,000 Police in its first term to tackle the rising rate of crime, says Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little. “Labour will put more cops on the beat to keep our communities safe. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Call for all-party round table on homelessness
    Labour is calling on the Government to take part in a roundtable meeting to hammer out a cross-party agreement on ending homelessness.  Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford said the country wanted positive solutions to homelessness, and wanted the political parties ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Seclusion rooms in schools
    Schools are undoubtedly stretched and underfunded to cope with students with high learning support needs. But this cannot justify the use of rooms (or cupboards) as spaces to forcibly isolate children. It has emerged via media that this practice continues ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    2 weeks ago
  • Public should get a say on new Waikato power station
    I had an opinion piece published in the Waikato Times about a controversial proposal to build a new gas-fired power station. It’s not on their website yet, so here it is: If you think the public would get a say ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    2 weeks ago
  • MSD and their investment approach
    The Government talks about investment but there is no investment. It is not investment if it isn’t over the whole of life and if there is no new money  — Shamubeel Eaqub   Investment sounds like adequate resourcing but this ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    2 weeks ago
  • Certainty needed for community services
    A couple of months ago I was at a seminar where three community organisations were presenting. Two of the three presenters were waiting to find out if their organisation would get a contract renewed with MSD. Not knowing if their ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    2 weeks ago
  • Domestic Violence – some advice for the media
    For the purpose of this piece, I’m going to use Domestic Violence (DV) as a proxy for intimate partner violence. DV is not isolated to physical abuse in a relationship between people with the same power. DV is a pattern of ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    3 weeks ago
  • Leroy’s New Paw Prints
    Leroy, an Auckland great dane recently received a new 3D printed bionic leg after cancer was discovered. I think this is a fantastic story and highlights the real potential of additive manufacturing, or 3D printing Leroy’s prosthetic was printed in titanium and was ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    3 weeks ago