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Daily review 18/02/2020

Written By: - Date published: 5:30 pm, February 18th, 2020 - 37 comments
Categories: Daily review - Tags:

Daily review is also your post.

This provides Standardistas the opportunity to review events of the day.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).

Don’t forget to be kind to each other …

37 comments on “Daily review 18/02/2020 ”

  1. Robert Guyton 1

    South America?

  2. Chris T 2

    Have to say it is mildly humorous there has been nearly zero articles on here about Winston and his SFO issues and tonnes about National when the Nats aren't even under investigation.

    I appreciate that some of the nats no doubt knew about a certain nutter and some donors actions and it was dodge, but a bit of balance would be nice, given NZ First's predicament and Ardern's in-action.

    • Incognito 2.1

      Sorry to disappoint. Give us your bank details and we will give you a refund.

    • Drowsy M. Kram 2.2

      Pound-for-pound, the opposition National party's "predicament" seems at least as serious as NZF's at this early stage. Maybe they deserved each other in October 2017, but the 'no-mates' Nats couldn't quite seal the deal. Thankfully, other parties in NZ’s current parliament haven't been similarly tarnished, yet.

      Cash only: $100 political donations cap in NSW
      "The ICAC inquiry has heard claims that Chinese billionaire Huang Xiangmo, who was a prohibited donor at the time, delivered $100,000 in cash in an Aldi plastic bag to the ALP's Sydney headquarters.
      The NSW Liberal Party was also recently revealed to have fallen foul of donation laws in relation to a $1750 donation made by Chinese property developer Ming Shang at a fundraiser for Drummoyne MP John Sidoti in February 2015."
      https://www.smh.com.au/politics/nsw/cash-only-100-political-donations-cap-in-nsw-20190917-p52sap.html

      Tasmanian Liberals received $75K in donations from private hospital operator Healthscope
      “No corporation, no big business hands over money out of the goodness of its heart,” [Greens leader] Ms O’Connor said.
      “It’s money that they regard as an investment into their own self-interest in the future.”
      Murchison independent MLC Ruth Forrest agreed.
      People are sick and tired of not knowing what influences are out there, and we have a right to know when we’re casting our vote,” Ms Forrest said.

      https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-12-18/tasmania-liberals-political-donations-healthscope-hospital/11807134

      • Chris T 2.2.1

        Well tbf the Nat party, at least on the surface has escaped the wraith of the SFO and NZF is in the bulls eye, but agree she is probably not dissimilar when you get down to the nitty gritty.

        Difference is. Ardern needs Winston to form a govt, and is looking a bit lost.

        • Psycho Milt 2.2.1.1

          It remains to be seen whether the National Party has successfully been able to scapegoat others for its donations fraud or not. For example, if Jami Lee Ross were to be among those charged, he was a senior MP, Chief Whip and Simon Bridges' bagman at the time of the fraud.

        • Psycho Milt 2.2.1.2

          It remains to be seen whether the National Party has successfully been able to scapegoat others for its donations fraud or not. For example, if Jami Lee Ross were to be among those charged, he was a senior MP, Chief Whip and Simon Bridges' bagman at the time of the fraud.

        • mac1 2.2.1.3

          Words in the House by someone looking a bit lost?

          Hon Simon Bridges: What ethical standards has her Deputy Prime Minister upheld in the last two weeks?

          Rt Hon JACINDA ARDERN: If the member wishes to ask a direct question about an issue around ministerial conduct, he is most welcome to, but I imagine the public right now sees the deep irony of this line of questioning from the leader of the National Party.

          • Chris T 2.2.1.3.1

            None in the National party are being investigated by the SFO.

            Did she not know that?

            • mary_a 2.2.1.3.1.1

              @ Chris T (2.2.1.3.1) … "None in the National party are being investigated by the SFO."

              You are privy to SFO information then?

              • Chris T

                It is pretty widely reported it is 3 donors and the nutty bloke.

                Until the nutty one got granted name suppression and every outlet had to stop saying his name

                • bwaghorn

                  So it's more than likely the crime was committed by someone while they were a member of the national party . It makes one wonder if maybe all 4 are recent ex members of the national party.

            • mac1 2.2.1.3.1.2

              The money went to the National Party. That's enough to point to a certain irony, especially since a certain phone call was made talking about how the money was to be handled as well as some pretty overt racism about the merits of various ethnicities as list MPs and a rather 'egregious' I believe the current bon mot is reference to the list member from the West Coast. I'd have said outrageous, myself.

              All of which goes to explain the PM's remarks I quoted from Hansard, but you'll need to see the on-line footage to see the look that was directed across the House at the hapless questioner, Simon Bridges.

    • I appreciate that some of the nats no doubt knew about a certain nutter and some donors actions…

      A certain "nutter" and his all-on-his-lonesome actions that he instigated and carried out all by himself, huh?

      The tough bit with "plausible deniability" is that the "plausible" part is a real bitch. "Implausible deniability" isn't really a thing.

      • Chris T 2.3.1

        Probably not carried out by himself, but the SFO have decided it was.

        • mac1 2.3.1.1

          On RNZ this morning a lawyer spoke about the role of the SFO. He said that we get to hear very little about who or what detail the SFO is investigating until the court case if it is to occur happens. So I don't think that we know at all where this investigation is going or who gets caught up in it.

          But as the PM said the public is no doubt seeing the irony alluded to.

          • Chris T 2.3.1.1.1

            All goo

            All the media will be proved wrong then.

            And Winston will be found to just be selling charity cookies they forgot to write down

    • roblogic 2.4

      "balance"

    • Muttonbird 3.1

      Yep. The deterrent enforced by the Tenancy Tribunal, or the deterrent able to be enforced by the Tenancy Tribunal is a JOKE!

      There was another one yesterday about a Land-peasant's son who harassed the tenants in person and online for months and was ordered to pay about $2400 from memory. That is a weak slap on the hand.

      I note that the two Land-peasant bodies, REINZ and the other one are gearing up for a fight against the no-cause eviction legislation.

      They say they'd rather have stiffer penalties for errant Land-peasants to act as a deterrent. News for them, the penalties are so weak now that any increase will have to be 10-fold to have any effect.

      Also, if this Labour-led government buckles to these amateur property addicts under pressure from NZF I will for the first time change my vote to the Green Party!!!

  3. Drowsy M. Kram 4

    Some would have us believe that all NZ political parties and political leaders are [equally] corrupt – voters will judge for themselves. Here's a potted SFO history via cartoon descriptions – regarding the current ‘awkwardness‘ between NZF and Labour, we have been here before [in 2008]:

    [1996] "A witness at the enquiry into New Zealand business tax evasion via the Cook Islands, takes cover behind privacy laws."

    [2002] "Shows Michelle Boag, President of the National Party, as a girl racer. Refers to the Serious Fraud Office investigating a huge donation from merchant bankers Fay Richwhite to the National Party before the 1996 election."

    [2002] "Shows the National Party as a headless chook having had it's head severed on the wood-block of 'credibility'. The headless chook is meanwhile calling for the head of the Director of the Serious Fraud Squad, who is investigating a suspect complaint into election donations to the National Party."

    [2005] "Prime Minister Helen Clark uses a hand on a long stick to pat Labour Party politician John Tamihere on the back. Refers to Tamihere being cleared of fraud charges (relating to tax evasion on the $195,000 golden handshake he received from the Waipareira Trust), by the Serious Fraud Office."

    [2008] "Shows leader of New Zealand First, Winston Peters, relaxing in a little boat on top of a sack of money. He smiles and wonders where he has put his paddle. The paddle is nowhere to be seen and the boat is drifting up 'Sh*t Creek'. Refers to the decision by the Serious Fraud Office to investigate donations made to Winston Peters for New Zealand First use and how untenable his position is becoming."

    [2008] "In a nightmarish scenario, Prime Minister, Helen Clark, is bowed over under a huge weight and wonders when she will be relieved of it. The weight is Winston Peters, leader of New Zealand First, whose head pokes through a hole in the back of Helen Clark's jacket. Refers to the investigations by the Serious Fraud Office, the Parliamentary Privileges Committee and possibly by the police into the way donations have been dealt with by New Zealand First."

    [2008] "Shows Prime Minister, Helen Clark, attached by a rope to Winston Peters, Minister of Foreign Affairs and leader of New Zealand First as they attempt to scale an icy mountain peak. Winston Peters has lost his grip and now dangles from the rope. Helen Clark has a dilemma because he is carrying the oxygen so that if she cuts him loose her own life will be in danger. Refers to the investigation by the Serious Fraud Office and the Parliamentary Privileges Committee and maybe also the police into donations given to New Zealand First that may not have been declared. Helen Clark has to decide how far to support him and when or if to let him go."

    [2008] "Shows two men looking at an image of a gun that appears to be coughing. The exhibit is labelled 'Key currency accusation'. One of the men concedes that it is not smoking but is coughing a bit. Refers to allegations that centre around the H-Fee – two payments totalling $A66.5 million to Equiticorp funnelled via sham foreign exchange transactions in 1988. During an interview in August 2007 Mr Key confirmed he worked as a foreign exchange dealer at Elders Merchant Finance, part of Elders IXL, which made the payments to the Allan Hawkins-controlled Equiticorp. John Key pointed out that the Serious Fraud Office director at the time confirmed that he was not involved."

    [2009] "In the first of two frames a scientist looks through a microscope and tells Prime Minister John Key that what he is looking is trying to mutate and that they need a vaccine. In the second frame the viewer sees through the microscope a microbe containing the grinning head of Winston Peters leader of New Zealand First who is making a come-back to politics after having vanished from the scene for over six months after his ignominious defeat in the 2008 election. Ahead of the election Winston Peters was dodging accusations of undeclared donations and money being funnelled through secret trust funds, as well as a serious fraud office inquiry."

    [2010] "'The Politician' cartoon strip. An assistant tells the minister as he hands him a document, that the government may have to bail out this finance company and the minister is dismayed because he had hoped that the company could bail out the government. Refers to The government's decision not to support a recapitalisation plan for South Canterbury Finance. It seems that receivership was the cleanest, simplest and ultimately safest option for both taxpayers and investors. The government now has to pay out around NZ$1.6 billion to 35,000 depositers in South Canterbury Finance who were covered under the extended guarantee scheme. The government is now in control and the Serious Fraud Office will extend and deepen its investigation of Allan Hubbard's affairs."

    [2012] "Three men from the 'SFO' 'Serious Fraud Office' turn the spotlight on a cleaner because everyone else at Bridgecorp denies responsibility. Context: Rob Roest, along with fellow directors Rod Petricevic and Peter Steigrad – are accused of misleading investors in Bridgecorp prospectuses and offer documents and are on trial in the High Court at Auckland. It was "human nature" for a co-accused to attempt to "mitigate their position" when standing trial, Petricevic's lawyer Charles Cato said."

    [2012] "Refers to the forced resignation of Judith Collins, the Minister of Justice and a potential rival to the Prime Minister, in late August 2014, following the disclosure that she was using a friendly blog to plot the downfall of the officer in charge of the Serious Fraud Office, Feeley. Collins had already been on a 'last warning' from the Prime Minister over her role in dealings of the milk company Oravida in its trade with China."

    [2014] "Cartoon shows a doctor, likely Adam Feeley, using a paddles and defribrillator labelled SFO to restart former Justice Minister Judith Collins' heart. Prime Minister John Key looks on and asks how it's going; the doctor replies, "She's…" and then yells, "CLEAR!". Collins is lying on the ground with a tag on her toe, and emails to Cameron Slater, founder of the Whale Oil Beef Hooked blog scattered around her. Cartoon references a report that cleared Collins of allegations that she was involved in a smear campaign against former Serious Fraud Office (SFO) chief executive, Adam Feeley."

    • Chris T 4.1

      Did someone say pledge cards.

      They are all dodgy including Ardern who is too weak to stand down Winston while the investigation is going on.

      • McFlock 4.1.1

        I wonder what your spin would have been if she'd ditched him a week or two back? "abandons her friends, coldly calculating", that sort of thing?

        • Chris T 4.1.1.1

          Not really

          Winston has always been dodgy, no matter what govt he conned into an agreement

          • McFlock 4.1.1.1.1

            Yeah, I guess we'll never know, eh.

            You and Paula Bennett might be very concerned about professional ethics. Maybe.

            Personally, I don't see why it's an issue to keep the government operational until the scheduled election. If Doug Graham can keep his knighthood because his convictions weren't relevant to why he got it, winnie can be treated under the same rules regarding the current allegations. It might be found that he did nothing illegal, like last time.

            • Chris T 4.1.1.1.1.1

              All good. just don't expect people to treat him or Ardern to with anything but a nudge nudge wink wink till the result comes out.

              "Most open and transparent" and all that

              • Incognito

                You do realise that the Government is not under investigation by SFO and it is NZF Foundation, don’t you?

              • McFlock

                Whereas if you're openly corrupt, there is no winking or nudging even when four people are charged in relation to donations to your party.

                The left are well-acquainted with the rules of winking and nudging when applied by tories. So is Winston.

      • mary_a 4.1.2

        @ Chris T (4.1) … Pot kettle comes to mind.

        Until the time Winston Peters has been charged (and found guilty) of donation fraud by a court of law, then PM Jacinda Ardern has no reason to stand him down or sack him.His position is not affecting the performance of the coalition government.

        I am by no means a NZF supporter, not having much time for Winston Peters at all. The PM is looking at this issue from a fair and common sense perspective as it stands at the moment.

  4. Fireblade 5

    Simon Bridges tax lies were highlighted in Parliament today.

    Dr Deborah Russell asked the Minister of Revenue about the marginal tax rate for someone on the median wage. The next supplementary question was a little dig at the Serious Fraud Office investigation into National Party donations.

  5. Muttonbird 6

    Farrar watch:

    David Farrar has done two posts today on the donations scandals. In the first he tries to manufacture clear separation between the the Nats and the four charged by the SFO for allegedly splitting $200,000 worth of donations 'of their own accord'.

    No help or advice from the Nats on how to donate anonymously. Honest, governor!

    Farrar's strategy is to keep clean the National Party by making dirty the shadowy and as yet unnamed donors for what was surely a mutually beneficial transaction.

    On that, I think it would help their case if their lawyers didn't insist on name suppression – putting a human face to them might be a good move. Perhaps the National Party are the ones who have asked for name suppression?

    Farrar also seems to be confident the court case will shed no light on what advice was given to the donor and donation splitters by the National Party. Or, that he is confident the advice came from someone who the National Party no longer likes…

    I'll be interested to see how far the defendant's lawyers DIG DEEP into what communication there was between the National Party and their clients on this.

    I suspect they won't dig deep at all. This will be sorted out in the back room.

    The second post is about differentiating the NZF Foundation from the National Party Foundation from which is was modelled.

    This strategy is again to manufacture clear air between the two. He at once claims that:

    All donations to the National Party Foundation are treated as donations to the National Party for electoral law purposes and disclosed as party donations. The NZF Foundation donations were not.

    but also that:

    The National Party Foundation’s purpose is to build up a capital fund, own the building National HQ is in, and produce future income for National. It is not to secretly pay day to day expenses of the party. In fact the National Foundation has never spent a cent as far as i know. The NZF Foundation however was paying day to day expenses on behalf of NZF including sending MPs to the races.

    PDF seems to be saying the National Party Foundation does not benefit the National Party directly at all despite apparently declaring donations as Party donations.

    If and when and when the National Party Foundation does "spend a cent" (typical National !) then will the National Party Foundation and the National Party be viewed by Farrar as one and the same? We'll wait and see.

    Finally, in a curious feat of contradiction, DFP claims on the one hand:

    The National Foundation is under the control of the National Party and chaired by the Party President. The NZF Foundation is not under their board’s control and many board members claim they know nothing about it.

    Yet assures his readers it is the NZF Foundation and the NZF Party which are indistinguishable, and the National Party Foundation and the National Party which are completely separate.

    Go figure…

    • Fireblade 6.1

      Three of the four accused have applied to get the name suppression orders lifted. Maybe they want to talk to the media.

      The NZ Herald:
      "Three of the four defendants appearing in court next week following a Serious Fraud Office investigation into National Party donations have applied to have the name suppression orders associated with the case lifted," a statement by Pead PR reads.

      "Legal counsel for the three defendants confirmed the application is before the Auckland District Court and is currently being considered by a judge."

      https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=12309703

  6. joe90 7

    'Murica's Sturmabteilung.

    2) They do not believe they are accountable to Congress, which is why they have no issues lying to them even while under oath. They believe they are only accountable to the President and even then, only to presidents like Trump.

    3) Border Patrol believes it is not required to answer to local police, FBI, CIA or any other law enforcement agency. They claim to be to “premiere” law enforcement agency, superior to all others. They say they will become a “national police force.” To be used by a president

    4) to enforce laws even among citizens. They know their forces are larger than is necessary, that is why they created this fake crisis. They know they have more gear than they need, that is why they stress emergency response, so they can get more.

    5) And I am telling you, this comes from as high as you can get. This is why they have amassed such a force. Bookmark this.

    https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/1227623752583667713.html

    https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/1229100545778110465.html

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