End of the line for Peters

Written By: - Date published: 9:48 am, September 10th, 2008 - 151 comments
Categories: election 2008, election funding, nz first - Tags:

Winston Peters will be wondering why he has let his political legacy be destroyed by not simply declaring donations that came from legal sources and being open in his role in soliciting them. All those MPs and other hangers-on who have ridden on the coat-tails of one of New Zealand’s most successful politicians*  must be quietly eyeing up their future post-NZF. Because this is the end of the road. Barring some miracle at his hearing tonight, Winston will be damned by Owen Glenn’s evidence. Clark will sack him as a minister either tomorrow or, more likely, when the Privileges Committee report comes back (he may be a liability but Clark will err on the side of due process) and Labour will complete the process of cutting its ties to NZF. Electoral doom awaits a tarnished politician whom neither major party will work with.

The irony of this is that National has behaved just as dubiously in respect to electoral donations but, unlike New Zealand First, National has managed to stop details of their activities coming to light. The Hollow Men emails show that John Key was heavily involved in fundraising for National. The million were funneled through the secret trusts to hide the identities of the donors, among whom are thoguht to be some contraversial characters and industry groups that received policy favours in return. Key himself was probably one of the larger donors via those trusts. Maybe the blow-torch of two months of media focus would bring some of the details of those trusts to light but that seems unlikely to happen.

Will this hurt Labour? I don’t think so. So, Owen Glenn might have asked Mike Williams if a donation to Peters’ electoral petition would suit Labour and Williams said ‘yes’, so what? Even if Mike Williams did pass that on at some point to others in Labour, Clark was still in the same position when she asked Glenn if he had made a donation to NZF and he said ‘yes’ while Peters said ‘no’ – she knew the evidence was conflicting but she had to take her minister at his word. The only way that this really hurts Labour is that all the journos are myopically focused on it – Labour would rather be debating policy. National on the other hand, needs to keep the media focused on anything other than its policies, its secret agenda, and its infighting. The media will undoubtedly continue to play along.

*[as much as I detest the xenophobia that is strong in NZF, I would argue in terms of policy successes Peters comes behind only Clark and Cullen as the most successful MMP-era politician]

151 comments on “End of the line for Peters”

  1. J Mex 1

    “National on the other hand, needs to keep the media focused on anything other than its policies, its secret agenda”

    Are you talking about the secret agenda, or the secret agenda to sink the secret agenda?

    I lose track thesedays.

  2. djp 2

    Personally I think Mike Williams has had a little more to do with all this.

    He probably organised the OG/NZF donation and also the attempted OG/Maori Party bribe

  3. Matthew Pilott 3

    I put this coment on another thread that had been hijacked by people calling Labour to task over this story. It’s my understanding of the facts of the situation, and I’m assuming that the trend that started on that thread will continue here, that people will try and blame Labour for as much of this as possible. So here’s my take:

    I’ll tell you what has got me riled about it: Clark seemed to have a good idea (I’ll only say that it is not certain) that Glenn had donated to NZF, and possibly (but even more unclear) that Peters had asked. Actually, the latter I’m not sure about – maybe she knew about the donation, but not until her conversation with Glenn did she have any definite word – a conversation Glenn generously mentioned as “Private and Confidential’; as I have stated before, a good reason for Clark to have kept her peace.

    So – Clark had evidence Peters was lying, none of it concrete, yet she did not call him on it. This was to avoid the present storm and keep the coalition together, and it seems to me she could have possibly acted to ensure Winston did not lie earlier. So that’s bad management, but Peters is not a Labour MP. I suppose she could have acted on her suspicions and sacked him, but I don’t know if that was a genuine option – this is because I can’t tell if she’d have had enough concrete evidence to have acted without risking getting it awfully wrong.

    I guess that’s an open invitation for people to paint a different picture, but try and be specific, if you will indulge me.

    Labour’s treatment of Glenn has also been a shocker. Not the ‘confused’ comment – I listened to the whole exchange and Cullen was merely saying that Glenn himself had presented conflicting accounts of what happened (stating there were different destinations for the dnation).

    But his questioning today of Glenn as to whether he was on the phone to Peters was a bridge too far – trying to discredit him in an adversarial fashion pissed me right off. Perhaps there’s something about the Privileges Committee process that makes that behaviour the norm but I don’t think so. Cullen sure got his back, though, but following on from a few other efforts to run distraction around the situation, I’m pretty disgusted with what I’ve heard has happened. I hope a lot of the rumours aren’t true.

    That, though, is an issue for Labour. If they want to antagonise and alienate a donor, they will suffer the consequences – but again, it’s not a hanging offence. Frankly, they should have stayed away because the whole thing is an NZF problem and they should have stayed right out of it.

  4. You really don’t think this will hurt Aunty Helen? She has to fire her Foreign Mister, this has damaged her reputation as a Leader because itshows she makes poor choices, I’m afraid it a bigger scandal than Key buying a big house.

  5. r0b 5

    Are you talking about the secret agenda, or the secret agenda to sink the secret agenda?

    The first one, the attempt to deceive the electorate with a Labour lite facade and get elected, while desperately trying to hide the much more hard core right wing agenda that you plan to implement if you succeed in lying your way in to power. That secret agenda. Clear now? Glad I could help.

  6. r0b 6

    this has damaged her reputation as a Leader because itshows she makes poor choices

    Uh huh.

    What it shows is that WP makes poor choices. I don’t like the man and won’t be sorry to see him go, but I am genuinely mystified – why ever did he dig himself such a hole? What was he thinking? Why Winston?

  7. higherstandard 7

    Will this hurt Labour – I would say Yes having just listened to sound bites from Owen Glenn’s press conference.

    From his comments regarding the Prime Minister’s behaviour and that of the President of the Labour Party they should both hang their heads in shame.

  8. randal 8

    winston will be back in parliament after the next election so dont go holding your breath you all.

  9. Billy 9

    Why Winston?

    He had a lot to lose electorally by his story that NZF was funded by cake stalls being proved a lie. He has built a career on pretending to be the only one not in the pocket of big business. So, if he was, the old duffers might stop voting for him.

  10. Felix 10

    “She has to fire her Foreign Mister”

    Has Brett inadvertently stumbled on the real scandal? And does Peter Davis know? 😉

  11. burt 11

    The heat has been turned up again by Own Glenn. Calling Helen Clark ‘self serving’ is another true thing he has said.

    So… what now? When will Helen resign over her part in this ugly mess of lies and corruption?

  12. Tim Ellis 12

    SP I agree with every part of your first paragraph. I think it is a fair assessment. I agree with your statement that Winston Peters has been one of New Zealand’s most successful politicians, but not for his policy successes. He has bounced back from the brink, time and time again. More than any other politician, for longer than anybody else, he has managed to build a political machine around nothing more than himself. He has used that political machine to hold the balance of power not just once, but twice. That is an extraordinary political achievement, by any measure. I don’t think there is another politician in New Zealand in the last fifty years who could have managed it, for so long.

    Your second paragraph does you no credit, as you continue to try to blur the line between legal behaviour, and illegal behaviour. Yes, in the past National used trusts.

    I refer you to the advice that the Electoral Commission received from the deputy solicitor general on the declaration requirements for money from trusts. It has been alleged by a number of people that National’s use of trusts was unlawful, and that Nicky Hager’s book somehow establishes this.

    Crown Law advice to electoral authorities has been consistent since at least 2001: that’s right, pretty much the whole period of this government, that the use of trusts to funnel donations to political parties was perfectly legal, and that the individual donations made to those trusts did not need to be declared. What was always clear was that the transfer of money from the trust to the political party did have to be declared. National complied with this requirement. The New Zealand First Party didn’t.

    You make further allegations that John Key was a donor to one of these trusts, without any evidence. It would puzzle me why John Key would not want to be identified, since several Labour MPs are declared as making donations to their parties, among others. That looks to me SP as a rather tame effort at distraction.

    I also disagree with your claim that this won’t hurt Labour. Remember that Helen Clark’s line since this story broke, was that she accepted Winston Peters’ word, and would continue to do so unless there was evidence that he was not telling the truth. Owen Glenn’s evidence at the Committee yesterday was very compelling. It is no longer credible that the difference of stories between Owen Glenn and Winston Peters was simply an “honest misunderstanding”, or a “conflict of evidence”.

    I believe this will hurt Labour, for a quite simple reason. Owen Glenn has proven himself to be forthcoming with evidence, trustworthy and reliable. Winston Peters hasn’t. Owen Glenn has said that Helen Clark knew about the conflict in February. So too did Trevor Mallard. Owen Glenn has also said that Mike Williams knew about the transaction before it took place.

    Remember, Helen Clark talks to Mike Williams on a daily basis. They are a very close political partnership. Helen Clark was sufficiently concerned about the allegation that Glenn had donated, back in February, to call Peters several times to ask for his side of the story. Is it still conceivable that Helen Clark would not have had a conversation with Mike Williams about the transaction, back in February? I don’t think that is conceivable. To my mind, it is almost impossible that there wasn’t a discussion between them, to the effect of: “Hey, Mike. Owen Glenn told me and Trevor at our meeting today, that he talked to you about the donation to Winston. Winston says there wasn’t a donation. Owen says there was. Do you know anything about this?”

    In my view, clearly Helen Clark knew that there was much more than just a conflict of evidence or an honest misunderstanding. If Owen Glenn is to be believed, and I emphasise that his evidence has been so compelling, and nobody has come up with a reasonable motive for him to lie, then Helen Clark made a decision to rely on Winston Peters’ word, not just over the word of her largest donor, but over her party president as well. She chose, for better or for worse, not to resolve that misunderstanding at the time. And it does now look very bad, and very messy for the Labour Party. I think it’s probably worth about ten percent in the polls.
    [NZF’s behaviour wasn’t illegal either, expect for not declaring the donations, which is a minor issue in itself, the law only requires that doantions be delcared so the public can be aware of where donations come from – NZF avoided that by not declaring, National by using trusts – same objective. SP]

  13. Jeeves 13

    I agree that it won’t hurt Labour a lot. But there are people out there who respect Helen Clark and will say “gee that wasn’t very nice the way she let Winston slander those journalists, and pretty much treated Owen Glenn like shit”. The same people are old enough to remember that her new-found love of due process is just that – new found (Stephen Franks’s blog has good discussion of this). This is just one of those things that takes the gloss off Helen’s respectable image.

    Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think this will have a serious impact on Labour. But then, nor will the leaking of a batch of National Party policies.

  14. randal 14

    in my view all of this verbiage is just wishfull thinking and little people running off at the mouth thinking if they say it enough times it will come true. the People…remember them…love winnie and they will vote him and the nzlp back into power at the next election. no ifs or buts or any other mealy mouthed frothings will alter that outcome. have a nice day.

  15. burt 15

    Now we are seeing “the new standard of openness and accountability” as promised by Labour.

    I think the old standard was more open and accountable but a lot less fun to watch. A quandry – the entertainment or the transparency…

    Could Labour & NZ1 have done a better job of bringing parliament into disrepute?

  16. rjs131 16

    I have no doubt that people would have seen Russell Fairbrothers performance last night and would be most impressed. He without a doubt be supported to a landslide victory in the election

  17. Felix 17

    Nice one burt.

    Sorry, but this is just like every other time you and your ilk have called for her resignation (pretty much every week or so for the last 3 years).

    edit: “the entertainment or the transparency”
    Bugger, if we want the entertainment we need to keep Winston really – the rest of them are boring as hell.

    A quandry indeed. I still say give him a late night TV show.

  18. Tim Ellis 18

    Matthew I did read your comments last night and I congratulate you on your candidness. I predicted a few weeks ago that I understood the reasons for Labour Party supporters denying any evidence of wrongdoing, and why they were in denial mode. I also predicted that at some point the denial of any wrongdoing would have to stop, as the credibility of defending the indefensible wore thin, and people started becoming frustrated with the damage Winston was doing to Labour.

    I believe that turning point, for Labour Party supporters, was when Helen Clark revealed that she had known about the “conflict of evidence” since February. That lead to Peters standing aside from his portfolios. I suspect at that point, Labour supporters realised that the game of defending Winston was up.

    It does defy belief just why Michael Cullen and Russell Fairbrother behaved in the way they did at the Privileges Committee. Are they really so out of touch that they think they can still rescue Winston from the brink? And are they so out of touch that they think they can do that by smearing a man who had been their Party’s biggest donor, had received a gong in the New Year from them, and just a few months before, had been on the receiving end of a request from the party president for more money?

    I guess the simple answer is, yes, it’s obvious Labour strategists still felt they had a chance of rescuing Winston. I suspect that belief, among the overwhelmingly credible and compelling evidence delivered yesterday, has been quite shocking to Labour voters.

  19. Daveski 19

    SP – some valid points and in general a reasonably balanced post, quite suprisingly so!

    Frankly, the slippery word describes Labour at present, particularly the way in which they treated Glenn yesterday – are you sure it was Winston and not his brother! Let’s not forget what Glenn has done for Labour.

    I agree that the fundamental issue is relatively minor here – if NZF had followed the rules, it would have been no issue. But Winston got hoist on his own petard, trying to play games at the expense of the truth.

    I can’t imagine there won’t be problems for Labour. I agree entirely with MP’s post above (a first MP :)) and I think Helen loses some of credibility, if not her reputation for being a smart manager.

    Frankly, like Glenn, the whole episode puts you off politicians.

  20. burt 20

    Felix

    Sorry, but this is just like every other time you and your ilk have called for her resignation (pretty much every week or so for the last 3 years).

    Yes the scandals have been almost weekly. It seems that calls for her resignation which are actually calls for the highest ethical standards in parliament are ignored.

    Are you defending the Labour party and Helen Clark for leaving the public guessing as to who is telling the truth and not knowing who in parliament they can trust?

  21. Tim Ellis 21

    SP said:

    [NZF’s behaviour wasn’t illegal either, expect for not declaring the donations, which is a minor issue in itself, the law only requires that doantions be delcared so the public can be aware of where donations come from – NZF avoided that by not declaring, National by using trusts – same objective. SP]

    I’m sorry SP, but that argument simply is not credible. Saying that behaviour isn’t illegal, except for the illegal part, which is a “minor issue” is astonishing, and I am honestly appalled that you would attempt to insult my intelligence, and the rest of your readers, by using it.

    The purpose of donations disclosure law is that you disclose the donations. Not disclosing a donation that the law says you are required to disclose is not “minor”. There has been a very considerable body of legal opinion, built up over many years, as to what was required to be disclosed under New Zealand electoral law. I offered you a Crown Law office opinion which covered those very issues. You clearly didn’t read it.

    National complied with donations disclosure laws, as they had been for many years. New Zealand First repeatedly broke those donations disclosure laws. I don’t see what reason you would have for trying to equate the two, other than an effort of distraction, and a fairly evident attempt to exonerate Peters. I don’t think that approach is credible, SP.

  22. Matthew Pilott 22

    Tim, I think you’re doing what everyone who wants to bring Labour into this is doing, and putting evidence available only now, in Clark’s hands back in February. In their conversation, Glenn mentioned that he’d donated to Peters after being asked. That is the conflict, and the only conflict that can be assumed – the rest is just your suppositions.

    Clark would have had no reason to ask Williams about the donation, and furthermore Williams has stated he hasn’t spoken to anyone about it at any stage, and doesn’t recall the part of a conversation with Glenn in which he okayed a payment to Peters.

    The fatcs now make it seem like Clark should have asked, but there’s nothing prior to now that makes that true.

    So, to my earlier comment – Clark knew that Glenn claimed to have made a donation with Peters’ knowledge, Peters denied the claim.

    That is all that you can assume with the various facts filtering about. Your comments about Labour knowing are based upon what we know now – recall that we’ve known this for a day – and Clark will, I presume, act shortly, or state what she is waiting to have happen before acting. She’s acted in a rational manner, if keeping a conversation private as it was intended (between her and Glenn) is an error than it’s one I’m glad she made.

  23. Billy 23

    SP said: the law only requires that doantions be delcared so the public can be aware of where donations come from – NZF avoided that by not declaring, National by using trusts – same objective.

    Not quite the same though, is it SP? In National’s case, the fact that they declared the donations has allowed people like you to bang on about their secret donors on the hour every hour between elections. No-one could do that for NZF because the very existence of the money had not been disclosed.

  24. Matthew Pilott 24

    Tim just saw your second comment, and yours daveski. It’s few and far between comments that you’ll see me openly critical of Labour, but their backing of Peters to the point of running misdirection has certainly raised my eyebrows. I still don’t think it’s a big issue in the sense that others do (corrupt, EFA violating, hypocricy and such) but as a strategy it seems bizzaire.

    Did they believe Peters would clear it all up in five minutes? I don’t think anyone else does. However, I’m vaguely interested in seeing what Peters has to say this afternoon – but I’m not expecting much.

    Keep in mind that it has taken some concrete evidence to change things – up until now it has been one word against another. Prior to now, all Clark could have done was to reveal what she knew based upon the conversation with Glenn – but the same fiaco would have played out as it has now. Nothing would have changed Peters’ dogged determination to be a hero and make a scene. Revealing this earlier would, in effect, change nothing.

  25. Janet 25

    This all shows why we need state funding of political parties, nice and clear and transparent. Then no one would have to go running around after rich businessmen left or right. And why a citizens’ jury after the election to sort out electoral law would be a good idea. Now remind me who doesn’t want these two things? And why not?

  26. Felix 26

    burt:
    No, I’m saying she has had no reason to resign every week just because some anonymous nutter on a blog demands it must be so.

    Do you think John Key should resign? The scandals have been weekly.

  27. mike 27

    “Will this hurt Labour? I don’t think so”

    If Owens press conference coverage is anything to go by SP this will hurt labour a great deal.

  28. Billy 28

    Now remind me who doesn’t want these two things?

    Me.

    And why not?

    Because I am tired of paying for everything.

  29. r0b 29

    He had a lot to lose electorally by his story that NZF was funded by cake stalls being proved a lie.

    I agree Billy, that could be the reason. But the risks seem to outweigh the benefits, as this whole sordid drama shows. Winston had too many enemies to take such risks.

    I think that either he has just genuinely lost it, or there is more here that we still don’t know – something genuinely dodgy that Winston was trying to cover up. Apart from these two alternatives I really can’t see that the benefits of hiding these donations outweighed the risks.

  30. burt 30

    Matthew Pilott

    Revealing this earlier would, in effect, change nothing.

    It would have changed a lot. Firstly it would have shown the voting public that Helen Clark (and Labour) put ethical behaviour ahead of political expediency.

    Who would vote for a party that has demonstrated that it’s best interests are above the interests of ethical standards and legal requirements for political parties?

  31. Felix 31

    Billy can you buy me some fags?

  32. Matthew Pilott 32

    Tim – I just found something I was looking for – you’re right, Glenn did mention the conversation with Williams when he met Clark in Feb – I thought I had seen that but couldn’t find the comment until now.

    He does steadfastly deny knowledge of that part of the conversation though (saying he’d have asked for the money for Labour, not NZF! That certainly rings true…). If Clark had asked Williams after her conversation with Glenn, and he said to her what he is saying to the media now, then she’d have further reason to be confused over what had happened.

    That being the case, two people would be telling Clark that they didn’t know about the donation, one stating that it had happened, but to either NZF or a trust. She couldn’t exactly sack Peters on that, though I guess she could have somehow tried to get the full story – I have no idea how she could have gone about that though…

  33. Tim Ellis 33

    That’s a very valid point, Matthew, and I’m not suggesting there’s any evidence that Helen Clark did have a conversation with Mike Williams about it. Even if they did, we have only their word to rely on, because the chances of documentary evidence of what took place in the conversation is pretty much zero.

    I agree that it is speculation on my part, based on information we have now. But I repeat. It is inconceivable to me, if Owen Glenn’s testimony that he had spoken to Mike Williams before making the donation is correct, and if Glenn’s testimony that he told Helen Clark and Trevor Mallard of this is correct, that the Prime Minister would not have asked Mike Williams for his view of these events, back in February. Further, it is inconceivable to me that Mike Williams would not tell the truth. And it is inconceivable to me that if the initial discussion between Glenn and Williams took place, Williams knew about the donation, and confirmed it to Clark, that Helen Clark would think that there was merely a “conflict of evidence” between Winston Peters’ word, and that of Glenn and Williams. That simply isn’t credible.

    As far as I’m concerned, the only element of doubt concerns whether Glenn did consult with Williams about the donation. Glenn seems to be absolutely certain that he did.

  34. Billy 34

    Sure, mate. But you know you can’t smoke them in pubs, don’t you?

  35. Felix 35

    r0b:
    “I think that either he has just genuinely lost it, or there is more here that we still don’t know – something genuinely dodgy that Winston was trying to cover up.”

    It doesn’t have to be either/or.

    captcha: plan winnifred – i kid you not.

    edit: Yeah I do miss the smokey bars.

  36. burt 36

    Matthew Pilott

    She couldn’t exactly sack Peters on that..

    Helen Clark could have referred Winston to the PC herself… I know it might not have been in her best interest but it would have shown her to have principles.

  37. higherstandard 37

    r0b

    “I think that either he has just genuinely lost it, or there is more here that we still don’t know – something genuinely dodgy that Winston was trying to cover up. Apart from these two alternatives I really can’t see that the benefits of hiding these donations outweighed the risks.”

    Agreed it is truly bizarre, in terms of your request about OG’s treatment by Labour members after my comments yesterday he goes into more detail in his interview which is truncated here.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/section/1/story.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10531418

  38. Matthew Pilott 38

    Who would vote for a party that has demonstrated that it’s best interests are above the interests of ethical standards and legal requirements for political parties?

    Someone who doesn’t believe it is true.

    Burt, you need to demonstrate that – I don’t accept it as a fact, as stated several times above.

    If you think it would have been ethical to reveal a conversation described by Glenn as “Private and Confidential”, then we have different ethical standards. Clark saying anything that conflicted with Peters would have revealed the content of that conversation.

  39. “mike
    September 10, 2008 at 10:52 am
    “Will this hurt Labour? I don’t think so’

    If Owens press conference coverage is anything to go by SP this will hurt labour a great deal.

    Kinda like the EFA did?

  40. J Mex 40

    Are you talking about the secret agenda, or the secret agenda to sink the secret agenda? – J Mex

    The first one, the attempt to deceive the electorate with a Labour lite facade and get elected, while desperately trying to hide the much more hard core right wing agenda that you plan to implement if you succeed in lying your way in to power. That secret agenda. Clear now? Glad I could help. – Rob

    I’m still confused Rob, I know about the “agenda” above, but according to SP, there is also a “secret agenda” by a faction of National MP’s who are out to sink the possibility of National winning the election. So obviously, one of those “secret agendas” is to implement a hard right “agenda” and the other is to ensure that the “hard right agenda” doesn’t come to pass.

    So confusing.

  41. Felix 41

    kitno: “Kinda like the EFA did?”

    Nah, like “Absolute Power” did.

  42. mike 42

    Excellent – Mike W asked OG for a job! the man has no morals.
    OG said “Williams will out of a job next week”

    Over to you helen – no presure…

  43. Matthew Pilott 43

    Helen Clark could have referred Winston to the PC herself

    Burt, if she referred Peters to the PC she would also have had to sack him – it would be saying she does not believe him and therefore cannot work with him. At that stage, this was not the case, so she could not have done that.

    Good thought though – I’m wondering if there was a course of action she could have taken to show that she wanted to clear it up, but still retained confidence in Peters unless shown otherwise. I can’t think of anything, to tell the truth.

    As far as I’m concerned, the only element of doubt concerns whether Glenn did consult with Williams about the donation. Glenn seems to be absolutely certain that he did.

    That’s it indeed, Tim. Williams is equally certain, though of course he has reason to be. One thing I noted is that Glenn referred to it as helping NZF – I suppose there’s no other way he could have helped NZF apart from a donation, but Williams suggeests he wouldn’t have said to donate to NZF if asked specifically.

    As said, if Williams said the same to Clark as he is now saying to the media, then Clark would have been even less certain of what had taken place.

  44. burt 44

    Matthew Pilott

    Burt, if she referred Peters to the PC she would also have had to sack him

    No, and she would not have needed to reveal any deatils of the ‘private’ conversation with Labour’s biggest big business backer. All she wouldm have needed to say was “There is a difference of opinion between what Winston has told parliament and the information I have that needs to be cleared up”. Easy peasy lemon squeezy. She would have come out looking principled and honest unlike the way it has unfolded now.

  45. r0b 45

    in terms of your request about OG’s treatment by Labour members

    Clearly Labour and Glenn have had a falling out, for which of course I am truly sorry. But there is still nothing in the article you link to about Labour making statements that “malign and ridicule’ Glenn as you claimed. All sources relating to this claim seem to trace back to rumours spread by National MPs, or Cullen’s comment that Glenn may have been confused. Until you have actual quotes from Labour I’m afraid I continue to classify your claim as overblown FUD.

  46. r0b 46

    I’m still confused Rob

    No J Mex, you seem to have it pretty clearly sorted to me. Don’t ask me to account for National’s internal divisions.

  47. Matthew Pilott 47

    Burt – what information would she need to present to the PC in order for them to act? I don’t think it’s as easy as you imply.

  48. Tim Ellis 48

    rOb, I do enjoy how you claim there is no evidence that Labour MPs have been smearing Owen Glenn (even after the insinuations at the Privileges Committee yesterday, and the two links I’ve given to you with reports in both the Sunday Star Times and on Guyon Espiner’s blog), and instead come up with claim that National is spreading rumours of Labour rumours about Owen Glenn, without actually providing any evidential links.

    Matthew, I have seen numerous reports that Mike Williams himself was heavily involved in the Tauranga electoral petition. I can’t find any links right at this moment, but if my recall is correct Williams was involved in calculating the likely costs of Bob Clarkson’s actual expenses during the petition. I do not remember whether I heard this from private or public sources.

    Williams was not an innocent bystander to the petition: he was actively involved and supportive of it. If Owen Glenn is correct, and that he did discuss a donation to assist with costs for the petition, it doesn’t seem to me likely, given Williams’ active interest in the petition, that he would dissuade Glenn from contributing.

    That’s a fairly critical issue, and Labour really have two unpalatable choices: they can either publicly deny Glenn’s claims about the conversation with Williams, and risk having Williams hauled before the Privileges Committee to inquire further into it, or they can go very quiet on the issue and hope it goes away. I don’t imagine Labour wants the PM in front of the Privileges Committee, or Mike Williams.

  49. Quoth the Raven 49

    It wasn’t long ago the righties were moaning about Labour for simply having a rich donor and I will add the righties were themselves ridiculing Glenn. They really can’t smell there own bullshit.

  50. burt 50

    Matthew Pilott

    Telling the truth is always easy. It may not always be in your own best interests to do so, but it always in the best interests of openness, accountability, transparency and the highest ethical standards.

  51. Turning it around on the right, wont change this mess, I hope it drags out for weeks, Its a sure bet now that National is our next government.

  52. Higherstandard 52

    QTR

    I’m what you would no doubt call a rightie although I think that such left right groupings are a bit dubious as I’ve found that most people will have what would be called left and right leanings dependant on the issue in front of them.

    Regardless you might want to see my comment here as I made much the same point about OG being treated appallingly by all sides.

    Key breaks flip-flop world record

  53. Matthew Pilott 53

    Burt, we’re on a roundabout – how can Clark claim to be acting with the highest ethical standards when she is revealing the content of a “private and Confidential” conversation by telling the truth?

    In reality, if you know two things are in conflict, and one of those is only known in confidence, you’re damned if you do and damned if you don’t.

    Tim – I haven’t seen a lot of that information. I do notice that Williams has been called a liar, point blank, by Glenn. Quite a conflict here isn’t it? I’ll ask you this: do you think the course of action chosen by Clark is likely if Williams had said “yes, Glenn told me he was donating to Peters”, back in February? Clark knowing for a fact that Peters was wrong, and that he knew he was wrong, would make it imprudent to continue defending him until this stage in proceedings. Although by this stage we’re working on a whole series of assumptions, which make our guesses as good as anyone’s really.

  54. Tim Ellis 54

    QtR, I wasn’t one of those people, and I don’t think that’s the issue. Plenty of Labour MPs have smeared Lord Ashcroft in the last few weeks, despite the fact they were quite happy for him to offer a large reward for the return of a New Zealand national treasure, and made allegations without evidence that he’s bankrolling the National Party.

    I have never maligned Owen Glenn. I think he’s flamboyant and occasionally quite boastful, and enjoys the honours bestowed upon him. I suppose if I were a billionaire, I’d feel entitled to big-note occasionally, too.

    I don’t know what motivated him to donate large sums of money to Labour and New Zealand First, but I suspect it had much more to do with the personal rapport he developed with the individuals concerned, such as Mike Williams, Helen Clark, and Winston Peters, rather than a deep and binding commitment to Labour Party policies. I think he’s probably a bit naive about what grass-roots political involvement is, and I doubt he keeps a very detailed watch on policy developments.

    I further don’t see any motive for Owen Glenn to fabricate the evidence he presented to the Privileges Committee. On the substantive issues he hasn’t been proven wrong. Evidently he now feels hurt that despite his generosity to Labour, the people who were quite happy to take his money fed him to the lions. They allowed his character to be the issue, when all he did was give a large sum of money and never insisted on its secrecy. I think a lot of people are thinking that is an appalling way to treat somebody who’s shown you so much generosity.

  55. Quoth the Raven 55

    HS and Tim you are the more reasonable then most from the right who comment on blogs. I will direct you to Matthew Hooton’s blog to see the ridicule that other righties are leveling at Glenn whilst simulataneously holding his recent opinions of the Labour party in high regard.

  56. jbc 56

    This whole business makes me wonder about why anonymising trust funds were not ruled out in the EFA as originally presented. Not until SP and friends protested was that addition made.

    Does anyone think that this affair casts a different light on that?

  57. gobsmacked 57

    There is supposedly a wall between party leaders and fund-raisers.

    So we have three options:

    1) Believe in the wall, in which case Clark is not guilty of anything except questionable judgement in backing Peters for too long.

    2) Don’t believe in the wall, in which case John Key has many questions to answer (the fact that the media aren’t asking them does not make this any less true)

    3) Believe that National have a wall, and Labour do not. There is no reason to believe in this difference, except of course predictable partisan convenience. But of course some will choose this option, just because they can.

    The long-term consequence is positive though. The issue of political funding is now at the centre of our democratic debate. If National get in, they say they will make changes. But they can never go back to the status quo ante, which they rather liked. The public won’t let them, and the media will be far more alert to the issue. After all, once you’ve grabbed the megaphone, and taken up residence on the high ground, you have to stay there, or you’re in trouble. Ask Winston Peters.

  58. higherstandard 58

    Mat

    I think the “private and confidential conversation” is a bit of red herring.

    Owen Glenn has never been worried about this being out in the open and I seem to remember the PM saying that the reason she hadn’t commented on the matter earlier is because no-one had asked her and she had to take both gents at their word (although I accept I may be misquoting her on this).

  59. randal 59

    this because withut opaque and necessarily transparent devices written into any legislation it is impossible to quantify in any meaningful measuer the exact number and totl of contributions, emolmuments and other fees fungible or otherwise that contribute to the efficient and smooth running of a democracy of this sort notwithstanding rich people and other persons flying round the world, getting on tv and filling in their otherwise boring lives and therby providing entertinment to the other members of their set. shall I continue…nah. its lunchtime

  60. r0b 60

    rOb, I do enjoy how you claim there is no evidence that Labour MPs have been smearing Owen Glenn (even after the insinuations at the Privileges Committee yesterday, and the two links I’ve given to you with reports in both the Sunday Star Times and on Guyon Espiner’s blog)

    Well thanks Tim, I enjoy your extra long and earnest missives too. But I’m still looking for the evidence. It may well exist, there’s plenty of smoke, but no one can point me to the fire, just rumours of what National MPs say that Labour MPs said.

    and instead come up with claim that National is spreading rumours of Labour rumours about Owen Glenn, without actually providing any evidential links.

    I don’t have any evidence Tim. Just seems to me like classic Crosby Textor politics, create enough fuss to drive Labour’s biggest donor away. Or in other words, Labour don’t seem to have a motive for maligning Glenn (indeed they have much to lose), whereas National have much to gain from creating that impression.

  61. jbc 61

    randal: opaque and transparent?

  62. bill brown 62

    “whereas National have much to gain from creating that impression.”

    That must be why Hooton’s banging on about it in his blog – on and on and on… Seriously, he must be filling three keyboards a day with spittle!

  63. Tim Ellis 63

    Gobsmacked, I think there’s another option:

    4. There is a wall in both parties, which exists until a point where it becomes politically necessary for the Leader to make further inquiries.

    The purpose of the wall is to distinguish between political activities and fundraising activities. Helen Clark doesn’t go around soliciting donations, Mike Williams does. John Key doesn’t go around soliciting donations, but there is a fundraising group that does so on the Party’s behalf.

    But in this case, the wall collapsed at the moment that Owen Glenn told Helen Clark that he had given money to Winston Peters. Again, this is not an issue of money to the Labour Party, but an issue of quite sensitive political management. This would never have become the political management issue that it has, if Winston Peters had not continued to lie for six months about whether the donation took place.

    In my view, it just isn’t credible for Helen Clark to say it wasn’t an issue affecting her party, or the Labour Government. Peters waged a six-month war against the media, accusing them of lying and fabricating evidence. He is a minister in her government. As Prime Minister she is required to uphold basic standards of accountability in her government, particularly since she has set such a high standard for herself and other ministers.

    What should Helen Clark have done, when Owen Glenn told her that he had donated to Winston, despite Winston’s claims to the contrary, and that he had told Mike Williams that he had donated to Winston? I think the issue of political management was quite clear. She didn’t have to sack Winston immediately. She could have, and should have, taken the following steps:

    1. Asked Winston for his recollection of events (which she did).
    2. Asked Mike Williams for his recollection of events (which she may have done, and I suspect she did, although she hasn’t confirmed this).
    3. If Winston Peters’ recollection, and Mike Williams recollection were identical (that Owen Glenn hadn’t donated to Winston, and that Owen hadn’t discussed the donation with Williams), then she should have gone back to Owen Glenn.
    4. In point 3, she should have said: “Look, Owen, if we don’t resolve this it has a reasonably high chance of being messy. Winston says there was no donation. Mike says he doesn’t know about the donation. I don’t know what to make of this. You’re a big friend of the Labour Party, and you don’t want to do anything that could harm the Labour Party. Please find some documentary evidence to back up your claim, and I will deal with it. If you can’t do that, please shut up about it.”
    5. If Williams had spoken to Glenn about the donation, and knew about it, then he would have admitted it to Clark if she had asked him. She still should have gone back to Glenn to get the documentary evidence. This would have given her ample reason not to trust Winston’s word.
    6. If she had Williams’ word, Glenn’s word, and Glenn’s documentary evidence, she should have gone back to Winston. She should have said: “Look, Winston. Owen has shown me the payment authority. He made a payment to Brian Henry’s trust account. Mike Williams has told me that he knew about it in advance. What you are saying to the public, and the media, is not credible. Quit the posturing, come clean on it, and we’ll resolve it. If you don’t, I will hang you out to dry. I will not allow the Labour Party to be brought into this mess. Clean it up.”

    I have no idea why she didn’t do that. I have no idea why she chose to sit on the information for six months, and say that she thought it was just a “conflict of evidence”, and that there was probably an honest explanation for this. That says to me that Helen Clark exercised very poor political judgement in this case. It has got far bigger than it should have. She has shown far superior political management skills than probably any other politician in recent New Zealand history. I think she’s let herself down this time.

  64. r0b 64

    I agree that it is speculation on my part, … It is inconceivable to me … Further, it is inconceivable … And it is inconceivable to me that

    You keep using that word, I do not think it means what you think it does.

    It’s not inconceivable at all – Gordon Campbell says it better than I was going to:
    http://election08.scoop.co.nz/gordon-campbell-on-the-owen-glenn-testimony/

    The fact Williams knew about the prospect / intention of a Glenn donation to Peters back in 2005 does not prove that Helen Clark knew this background when she spoke to Glenn in February of this year.

    Why not ? Because given the Chinese walls said to operate between the parliamentary wing and party organisation in every major party on issues about funding, there is room for plausible deniability as regards how much Clark’s knew, and when she knew it. All of which is relevant to when she had sufficient information to make a judgement call about the reliability of Peters assurance to her in February, that no such donation had occurred.

  65. Ben R 65

    Anyone else get the horn from Glenn’s Executive Assistant Laura Ede? She is magnificent.

  66. yl 66

    Ben R,

    “Anyone else get the horn from Glenn’s Executive Assistant Laura Ede? She is magnificent.”

    lol horn, i have never heard of that before.

    That has made my day.

  67. r0b 67

    He is a minister in her government.

    Ahh actually Tim no, WP is a minister outside of government. I recall there was rather a lot of discussion about this MMP innovation at the time. But Clark has less responsibility for WP than for her own ministers, though I agree of course that she does have some even for WP.

  68. Pascal's bookie 68

    I wonder how the minor parties feel about the fact that the National party feels, should they be in a coalition, that it has the right to go snooping around in their books and generally treating them as sub brands of the National borg.

  69. Dom 69

    I generally distrust old men who surround themselves with skinny, blonde ‘executive assistants’. A picture of Glenn yesterday showed him with at least three…you can’t tell me he has his mind on business with all that distraction around him.

    This is assuming he’s heterosexual of course…some of us men could be surrounded with skinny, blonde females and remain utterly undistracted!

    I have to say, this diversion into the ‘horn’ feels very Kiwiblog…

  70. Tim Ellis 70

    Rob quotes Gordon Campbell saying:

    The fact Williams knew about the prospect / intention of a Glenn donation to Peters back in 2005 does not prove that Helen Clark knew this background when she spoke to Glenn in February of this year.

    This is true, and a good point. Except that Owen Glenn told Helen Clark that he had informed Mike Williams of the donation. For there merely to be a conflict of evidence between two people, you have to assume that Helen Clark chose not to discuss with Mike Williams whether, as Owen Glenn had claimed, Glenn had discussed the donation with Mike Williams. That doesn’t strike me as plausible, to dismiss the issue as a conflict between two people, when she knew that a third person had material information as to who was telling the truth.

    If she didn’t inquire of Williams, then she should have. This was no longer an issue of political donations (and it wasn’t ever an issue of political donations to her party, which is what the chinese walls are established to protect), but the issue of whether her Foreign Minister was telling the truth. Whether or not your Foreign Minister sits in Cabinet, or outside Cabinet, or is a member of your party, or a party in coalition, it is a fundamental issue of confidence in that minister’s abilities to behave appropriately.

    To my mind this was a basic issue of political management, and Helen Clark made the wrong call.

  71. Mike Collins 71

    Matthew Pilot – “In reality, if you know two things are in conflict, and one of those is only known in confidence, you’re damned if you do and damned if you don’t.”

    That is a sensible point Matthew. However knowing a serious conflict had arisen here’s what I think the PM should have done: Go back to Owen Glenn and advise that she has had a discussion with WP and that he states clearly that he never asked for the donation. Then state that she does not want to have a minister in her government that to her knowledge is potentially lying to the public (to say there was no potential for this is definitely to say Glenn is lying). With that in mind she wants to get to the bottom of things in a fair and reasonable way. To do that she will need to reveal their conversation in order to investigate. Would it be alright with him? Accepting he would be breaching his word reagrding private and confidential with Winston.

    A second way of going about it is calling a meeting, chaired by herself, between the two. State that there is a conflict and she can’t have the possibility exist that one of her ministers is lying to the public. This needs to be cleared up in private or a public enquiry would need to take place (ie privileges committee). The outcome of such a meeting would need to be that either Glenn accepts he is wrong (unlikely in my opinion) or Winston accept he is wrong and require him to apologise to the public. (likely in my opinion to be wrong – unlikely to apologise).

  72. Ben R 72

    Dom,

    “I have to say, this diversion into the ‘horn’ feels very Kiwiblog ”

    I think they have a thread about the assistants, although I actually noticed her in the herald article that HS linked above.

    I think it’s fairly standard for billionaire’s to surround themselves with attractive assistants. Look at Donald Trump, Branson & Larry Ellison etc

  73. burt 73

    Dom

    I generally distrust old men who surround themselves with skinny, blonde ‘executive assistants’.

    What an absurd thing to say… That is a direct attack on a persons character based on skin deep observations of the people he employs.

    What about if they surround themselves with huckery old moles? Are they suddenly trustworthy when they do that?

    Owen Glenn vs Mike Williams – I know which one I would trust….

  74. r0b 74

    If she didn’t inquire of Williams, then she should have.

    Well that may be true, but it isn’t exactly a smoking gun is it. Still, fling enough mud around and hope that some of it will stick, politics since time immemorial.

  75. Tim Ellis 75

    No Rob, that isn’t the smoking gun. The smoking gun is that Helen Clark sat on what she knew for six months, with the feeble excuse that it was nothing more than a conflict of views between two people, when she knew that there was a third person who had material information to help clear up the matter. She knew that Glenn could have provided documentary evidence to his claim that he had donated to Winston, and refused to press it further.

    She allowed her foreign minister to play games with the media and the public over it, for six months, while constantly saying that he was an honourable man, and that there was no reason to doubt his word. I’m sorry, r0b, but it just stretches credibility to look at it any other way. It was bad political management. She could have, and should have, resolved the issue at the time.

  76. Dom 76

    burt – it was meant in a lighthearted manner so no need to get shrieky on Glenn’s behalf! But thanks, I’ve made the following note to myself : Must convey humour better next time…

  77. Daveski 77

    I’ve just listened to all 7 parts of the press conference – fascinating.

    This is really bad for Labour. Cullen and Clark come out particularly bad.

    However, I will qualify this statement. All it really does is throw light on the ugly machinations of politics that we all know goes on. We just turn a blind eye to it unless it’s the other side.

    There is a certain irony that the common attacks on National have been about secret agendas, flip flops, and slippery personalities, all of which can now be levelled at Labour with evidence.

    The only person who has come out of this with any credit is Owen Glenn. He comes across as surprisingly normal and a decent bloke. Far too good for politics 🙂

  78. kisekiman 78

    Tim Ellis, you were looking for a link that showed Mike Williams’ involvement in WRP’s electoral pettion in Tauranga.

    Here it is:

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/section/1/story.cfm?c_id=1&ObjectID=10352682

    The relevant quote being:

    “Mr Williams said key questions about the election … would be answered by Winston Peters’ petition against Bob Clarkson in Tauranga, which Labour would co-operate with.

    He had met Mr Peters’ lawyer, Brian Henry, and would provide information to assist in the court case.”

    And we now know he also gave Owen Glenn the green light to give Winston the hundred grand, which according to Mr. Glenn’s testimony would not have proceeded had Mr. Williams indicated such a contribution would not have been helpful to Labour.

  79. r0b 79

    The smoking gun is that

    That’s a smoking gun? You should read The Hollow Men Tim, it contains veritable chimney stack howitzers in comparison.

    She allowed her foreign minister to play games with the media and the public over it, for six months, while constantly saying that he was an honourable man, and that there was no reason to doubt his word.

    Did she? Goodness I missed it. Could you link to a few examples – oh, three of four will do – from six months ago of HC “constantly” saying that WP was an honourable man, and that there was no reason to doubt his word over this issue? That would be splendid, thanks.

  80. Owen Glenn seemed to reveal more today, one of the highlights of todays meeting was when he stated that “Ms Clark was clearly aware of his donation to New Zealand First.

    Surly she should resign now and save herself further shame.

    Do we have any impeachment laws in New Zealand?

    Aunty Helen has lied too many times, to remain in power.

  81. Tim Ellis 81

    That’s a pointless exercise Rob. You might as well get me to google the sky is blue. I don’t think you’re actually interested in debating the issue constructively, but rather split hairs. Helen Clark has constantly said that she had an obligation to accept her minister’s word, unless she had reason to believe otherwise. She has consistently said that there is a conflict of evidence between two people, and that she had assumed there was nothing more than an honest misunderstanding.

    You’re an intelligent person, Rob. I simply do not believe that you are really so gullible as to believe the nonsense about having to accept Winston’s word.

  82. Vanilla Eis 82

    Brett: good god you righties sound like a stuck record. Why does she need to resign again? She’s made it perfectly clear that she had to take Winstons word. As above conversations show she could probably have done more to find out the truth. Maybe she did. As it stands, however, all she knows is that there are two versions of the story.

    Hardly an impeachable offense.

  83. r0b 83

    That’s a pointless exercise Rob. You might as well get me to google the sky is blue.

    So it should be easy then. Come on Tim, indulge me. 6 months ago, relating to this issue.

  84. She knew Peters was lying, that is disgusting, I hope she didn’t tell the same lie she told the serious fraud squad.

  85. kisekiman 85

    Helen Clark with an impeccable nose for bullshit when it emanated from David Benson-Pope and numerous others couldn’t resolve a “conflict of evidence” between her Foreign Minister and biggest donor. Yeah Right.

  86. rave 87

    The electorate is not putty in the hands of the MSM and their feeding frenzies over donations to parties.

    Peters sunk himself because of his sense of honour, he wasnt going to answer to the old enemies he has shafted before. His mates are the kiwi capitalists that produce things (thanks to their workers). He made the mistake of thinking Glenn was one of them.

    The big white sharks are the Ashcrofts cruising around sniffing out how to buy the election and then what’s left of the country. Take Belize. These predators are aligned to the US the CIA and the neocons (the Brit Conservatives are US pawns).

    The Nats are making mistakes because they are divided over the best way to win. The full surge or a quiet surge. But they are agreed on one thing. The global economy is facing recession and they want to grab what they can. Labour is prone to putting regulations in the way of more privatisation so it has to go.

    The only question is can the left blogsphere and independent media compete with the rightwing MSM and their jackal blogs and keep exposing the secret privatisation agenda to the point where the majority wakes up and throws the parasites out?

  87. burt 88

    rOb

    You are a great defender of the status quo. Well done.

    However I have one question: Is there anything Labour could do that would make you go – ‘Oh, I’m not happy with that, this is not up to the standard I would expect from our elected representatives’ ?

  88. Right wing MSM????

    I guess you don’t watch a lot of TVNZ.

  89. r0b 90

    However I have one question: Is there anything Labour could do that would make you go – ‘Oh, I’m not happy with that, this is not up to the standard I would expect from our elected representatives’

    Yes. If a party lies about its intentions – does the opposite of what it said it would do – I find that completely unacceptable. Which was why, post 1984, I never could trust Labour until 1999, when it became clear that they had learned the lesson that you have to tell the electorate the truth, keep your word.

    I fear that National have never learned this lesson, as the secret agenda tapes all too recently confirm.

    Anyway – how you doing there Tim? Am I splitting hairs, or are you perchance talking out of your arse?

  90. Bill 91

    From http://www.policy.net.nz/blog/?p=385#comments
    “One thing has always puzzled me about this affair. What motivated Owen Glenn and Robert Jones to contribute to NZ First? Perhaps I have become too immersed in American Politics of late but had this imbroglio occurred there, the motivation would be clear – set up a scandal or, in the event it doesn’t catch, gain some leverage over a third and capricious party.
    When the news broke yesterday on National Radio, I was pleased that Chris immediately raised his eyebrows at the fact that the all-important phone call was from Glenn to Peters. My own eyebrows nearly flipped my glasses off. Had the exchange been the other way around, it would have been damning, this way it raises the question of who solicited who and why.

    Am I being paranoid here? That thought was uppermost in my mind until I spoke with a former ACT candidate who volunteered the same scenario. He suggested that Winston was neatly put into a lose/lose situation. Had Glenn offered the donation with a nudge and a wink and Winston availed himself of the opportunity to conceal it, Winston cannot now blow the whistle without incriminating himself.

    As Chris has pointed out, National has never achieved a simple majority. The removal of the troublesome mouse Peters is essential to blocking a Labour lead coalition. A hundred grand is not a large chunk of cheese

    I post this with some hesitation and in the hopes that more experienced pundits will knock it for six so I can put aside the nagging fear that U.S. style campaigning has taken root here.”

    “Could the meetings have been initiated by a hint or word in the ear from an intermediary? I’m sure the whiff of funds would send Peters or his minions scurrying to the source? Not difficult to create a record of telephone calls. What we can never know is exactly what was said. Mike Williams disputes the content of his call from Glenn.
    Does anyone know where the Monaco Consul story came from? This is another thing I have difficulty with. Glenn doesn’t seem to be the type to blow 600 grand on a “bauble’ and, by all accounts, he offered his donation to Labour unsolicited. This is odd behaviour – Cactus Kate said of an interview with him in 2002:
    “I didn’t hold back on the government of the day and Mr Glenn was extremely supportive of the idea that they were all things evil’.”

    The only hard evidence we have is a record of a telephone call made by Glenn to Peters. All else is Glenn’s word.
    Glenn’s record shows he is not inclined to let truth get in the way of a good story or business deal. The intermediary was Roger McClay whose roots are where?

  91. kisekiman 92

    Rob you really are an indoctrinated apparatchik. Tim has put forward some of the most cogent comments on this issue and all you can do is accuse him of is “talking out of his arse” because he hasn’t run around hunting for links for you.

    Here’s one:

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/4626146a6160.html “Clark stands by NZ First leader”

    Helen Clark: “I’m in the position that Mr Peters is an honourable member and I must accept his word, unless I have evidence to the contrary.”

  92. Crank 93

    Bill,

    I don’t think you can attribute a deeply cunning Machiavellian slow play like you are suggesting to a party who can’t even get it together enough not to leak their un released policy.

  93. r0b 94

    Rob you really are an indoctrinated apparatchik.

    Well I do like to stick to the facts, if that’s what you mean.

    Tim has put forward some of the most cogent comments on this issue and all you can do is accuse him of is “talking out of his arse’ because he hasn’t run around hunting for links for you.

    Tim is talking out of his arse because he goes beyond the facts to make constant little exaggerations and assumptions to push his (otherwise very well crafted) line of propaganda. Above for example he stated that WP is a government minister, which he is not.

    In the case we are discussing here Tim stated that HC has been “constantly” defending WP for “six months”, which she has not, for the very good reason that this thing only blew up three months ago (and HC was only dragged in to it recently).

    Here’s one:

    Yeah fine, as above, got anything from 6 months ago on this? Just the facts eh, just the facts. Pesky little things facts, but some of us like them.

  94. Tim Ellis 95

    You will be pleased to know, rob, that I have not relied on links from kiwiblog, that right-wing rag the Herald, or the Dominion Post. I will refer you to a question put to the Prime Minister in the House yesterday, from John Key. Note that the question includes a quote from John Key, quoting Helen Clark. I understand that when questions include assertions made by other MPs, the questioner has to provide evidence to the Clerk that the quote was actually made:

    1. JOHN KEY (Leader of the Opposition) to the Prime Minister: Does she stand by her statement in July regarding the Rt Hon Winston Peters: “I’ve made it clear all the way through this round of allegations that I accept an honourable member’s word as his bond unless I have reason to doubt it. I don’t have reason to doubt it at this point.’, and how does she reconcile that with her statement last week in the House that in her meeting with Mr Owen Glenn in February she was “left with the impression that he had been asked for money [by Mr Peters], and that some time later he had been advised where to pay it.’?

    Rt Hon HELEN CLARK (Prime Minister) : As I said last week, my assumption was that both men were honourable gentlemen and there may be some innocent explanation.

    Helen Clark appears to confirm that she did make that statement, in her reply. You may wish to split hairs on this. I don’t think that is credible.

    Helen Clark has said throughout the allegations against Winston Peters, that she accepts an honourable member’s word as his bond, unless she has reason to doubt it. I suggest to you that when your largest donor tells you that he made a donation, that he informed the Party President, who speaks to the Prime Minister on a daily basis, of the same, that is credible reason to doubt Winston Peters’ word.

  95. Crank 96

    A good weather vane for when Labour are in real trouble is when r0b starts arguing semantics.

    Boring people off the topic is a novel approach.

  96. r0b 97

    You will be pleased to know, rob, that I have not relied on links from kiwiblog, that right-wing rag the Herald, or the Dominion Post.

    Well that’s splendid Tim, great work. But you should have checked a calendar (“six months”) and a dictionary (“constantly”) too.

    Possibly, like WP, you should stop digging, and just admit to a little rhetorical excess. No shame in that eh, I might have even done it myself once or twice. Nah – probably only once.

  97. r0b 98

    Boring people off the topic is a novel approach.

    Yup, facts usually are boring compared to wild exaggerations. Tragic really.

  98. Pascal's bookie 99

    “arguing semantics”

    God forbid people discuss things paying due attention to what words actually mean.

  99. Ben R 100

    “What motivated Owen Glenn and Robert Jones to contribute to NZ First?”

    Robert Jones has long been a fan of Winston.

  100. higherstandard 101

    Well in r0b’s defence at least he’s not arguing that there’s no proof that the sun will come up tomorrow morning again.

  101. Tim Ellis 102

    Arguing semantics indeed, rob. If you’re going to go down that road, then you might want to look up a dictionary for the definition of “defending”. I didn’t say “publicly defending to the media”.

    It is clear that Helen Clark knew there was a “conflict of evidence” for six months. By not revealing that “conflict of evidence”, for six months, she was defending him. Helen Clark has said that the reason she did not act against Peters was that she saw it as a conflict of evidence, assumed an innocent misunderstanding, and accepted an honorable member’s word.

    Peters gave his word to her in February. From February to August, she knew there was a relatively easy way for her to resolve this conflict of evidence. She knew there were three people, one of whom happens to be one of her closest advisers, who could assist in resolving who was telling the truth. She could have either asked Glenn to produce the documentation to his claim, or asked one of her closest advisers, Mike Williams, whether he could confirm Glenn’s assertion that he had informed Williams of the donation in December.

    That was bad political management on her part, and it is now blowing up in the Labour Party’s face.

  102. kisekiman 103

    Tim can take that further with you if he wants, I’m sure he’s a big boy and will concede if he thinks he’s overstated the situation.

    I would have to agree that Helen would have been very unwise to have “constantly” defended WP having known about the “conflict of evidence” since February but she was clearly hedging her bets by remaining silent until she admitted her inside knowledge on Aug 27.

    She was no doubt hoping that things didn’t blow up the spectacular fashion in which they have. I guess the ETS must be very important to her.

  103. randal 104

    KISEKIMAN… I dont guess but i know that the ETS is important to all of us and not just the PM. wise up and get the big picture. geta goal and a vision and the future will come along bye ‘n bye.

  104. kisekiman 105

    Randal, do you happen to play a banjo by any chance?

  105. r0b 106

    Ohh Tim, I’m disappointed, you should have just fessed up to rhetorical excess. Here were your actual words:

    She allowed her foreign minister to play games with the media and the public over it, for six months, while constantly saying that he was an honourable man, and that there was no reason to doubt his word. I’m sorry, r0b, but it just stretches credibility to look at it any other way.

    When called on it you claimed that it was too obvious to need defending – like googling “the sky is blue”. When pressed further you are completely unable to substantiate, and then you resort to blathering about the semantics of “defending”.

    Here – let’s make it simple – do you still stand by your claim as quoted above, or not? If you do, then the only credibility stretched here is yours…

  106. r0b 107

    I miss edit! Here it is correctly tagged:

    Ohh Tim, I’m disappointed, you should have just fessed up to rhetorical excess. Here were your actual words:

    She allowed her foreign minister to play games with the media and the public over it, for six months, while constantly saying that he was an honourable man, and that there was no reason to doubt his word. I’m sorry, r0b, but it just stretches credibility to look at it any other way.

    When called on it you claimed that it was too obvious to need defending – like googling “the sky is blue”. When pressed further you are completely unable to substantiate, and then you resort to blathering about the semantics of “defending”.

    Here – let’s make it simple – do you still stand by your claim as quoted above, or not? If you do, then the only credibility stretched here is yours…

  107. higherstandard 108

    r0b

    Are you suggesting that the PM and Labour have no case to answer over their treatment of Owen Glenn and the WP affair – sounds a bit far fetched.

  108. r0b 109

    Are you suggesting that the PM and Labour have no case to answer over their treatment of Owen Glenn and the WP affair – sounds a bit far fetched.

    HS I am saying that Tim got a wee bit carried away, and hasn’t the grace to admit it.

  109. Crank 110

    “Are you suggesting that the PM and Labour have no case to answer over their treatment of Owen Glenn and the WP affair – sounds a bit far fetched”

    Not to a mindlessly indoctrinated labourite. They operate arguments along similar lines to holocaust deniers. Thankfully there are only a couple of them who comment on this site.

  110. Daveski 111

    From scoop:

    The nature of the nine floor gossip mill also makes it inconceivable that the upper echelons of the government’s parliamentary wing would not have subsequently known informally about the Glenn donation to Peters and the subsequent tactical choice by Labour to try and denigrate Glenn is unfortunately, all too typical. Someone, someday may make a list of the people the Labour government has abandoned over the course of this decade in the name of expediency, and its own survival. Karmically, one of those people who was being fitted for the dud parachute has now struck back. Winston, barring miracles, will be the next to be jettisoned.

    Ironically, the Peters testimony tonight will be taking place just as scientists in Switzerland will be turning on the giant Hadron Collider particle accelerator. Some people have been worried that this event could create an artificial black hole, into which the entire planet will be sucked. Well, the giant sucking sound you hear tonight before the privileges committee is more likely to be the sound of Peters’ political career disappearing down to a tiny point of darkness, of unutterable density.

    It’s getting hard to justify them r0b but I’ve got to admire your dedication to the job!

  111. Muldoon Magic 112

    Im so glad owie jetted into town

    Slotted Mike Willams Winston and Helen Clark but what do all the lefties do now call him a rich prick.

    Funny how the socialists can turn

  112. deemac 113

    the idea that two people can have two differing recollections of an event, particularly one that happened some time ago, is not surprising. A recent study showed how fallible the human memory is:
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2008/sep/10/humanbehaviour.july7

    Short of a tape recording of Winston and Owen’s conversation coming to light, it is impossible to know what was said, and what each party believed was meant, which might be a rather different matter.

    And quite how the Helen Clark was supposed to investigate what was at the time an internal matter for another political party is hard to see. She could have asked, but would no doubt have been told it was none of her business. Being PM does not give you absolute power, despite what some paranoid people seem to believe.

  113. Tim Ellis 114

    rob, I know you enjoy a good debate about the substantive issues, and I’m quite happy to admit when I’m wrong, or clarify where I haven’t been clear.

    Helen Clark has known for six months that there was a “conflict of evidence” about an issue that goes directly to the integrity of her Foreign Minister. She had information that there was a contradiction between statements made by her Foreign Minister, from her biggest donor. She also had information from that same donor that her party president, and one of her closest advisers, knew that contradiction existed. It was a contradiction that she could have readily resolved, by asking for documentation from the donor, or clarification from Mike Williams. She chose not to.

    I stand by my statement that by not seeking that clarification, and by relying on the assumption that Winston Peters was honourable, she was providing a defence for him. You have pointed out that Helen Clark only started using the “I assumed Winston was honourable” line in July. This is correct. I’m not disputing that. I didn’t say she was constantly using that defence, in public, since February. I said she was constantly defending him against the inevitable public scrutiny that has since transpired, by either not publicly disclosing her knowledge of the conflict, or alternatively not seeking a resolution to the conflict to her own satisfaction.

    Helen Clark protected Winston for six months, allowing a situation where her own Foreign Minister was attacking the media and engaging in sideshow after sideshow, without ever holding him to account. That is protecting him, and defending him. As I said before, she has failed to meet the high standards she normally sets for herself.

  114. r0b 115

    Hi ho HS, I’ve been pondering your question in a bit more details. Does Labour have a case to answer?

    WP clearly has a case to answer, a foolish case of his own making, I really do not understand why he has done this to himself.

    Does Labour have a case to answer over keeping quiet on Owen Glenn? I don’t think so. All HC can be accused of is failing to actively volunteer information which was (1) conveyed to her as “private and confidential”, and (2) directly denied by the other party (possibly lying through his teeth, but “constitutionally” to be taken at his word). More on this below.

    Does Labour have a case to answer over its treatment of Owen Glenn? Well Glenn certainly seems to think so so something is not right there. But I find no substantiated comment from a Labour source attacking Glenn, there seemed to be only rumours originating from national sources.

    Glenn’s main issue seems to be with an NZF MP: “Mr Glenn said he decided to fight back after a New Zealand First MP called him a liar in Parliament.” His issue with Labour seems to be that they didn’t leap to his defence: “They could have been a little more supportive and not left me to the lions.”

    So should Labour have actively leapt to Glenn’s defence? Should HC have denounced Winston Peters as a liar and brought down the government? Well imagine the outrage if this had happened. Labour destabilising the government, abandoning its legislative agenda, all to defend its major financial donor? Selling out the integrity of Government to keep Party funding coming? What an outrage! Seriously though – is that what you righties want, pander to the Big Money at all costs? Hmmmmm.

    Owen Glenn is a generous donor who should not have been attacked by anyone, but if he is upset because Labour didn’t leap to his defence, well, I don’t believe that they could have. So then, for Labour, damned if you do, damned if you don’t, right wing ranting which ever way you turn, another day at the office really.

  115. r0b 116

    Yeah righto Tim, at a certain point one has to let the history of the thread speak for itself, and I’m at that point now! Your exaggerated claim and inability to defend it is above for all to see. Blue sky indeed.

  116. Nick C 117

    Are you guys going to report reality or will others just have to give it to you?

    Perhaps these comments by Glenn this morning will hurt Labour:

    On Miss Clark: “She’s very self-serving… I am expendable. I wouldn’t want them in the trenches next to me. It’s not the money, it’s the way you are treated, then you turn the dogs on me… toothless dogs.”

    On Mr Williams: “Mr Williams is wrestling with the truth. He is an unmitigated falsifier of veracity.”

    On Finance Minister Michael Cullen: “He’s a bully… He’s not the sort of guy I would want to spend a weekend with on an island with. But he is just following orders.”

    [lprent: Side issue – kind of thing that the right specialises in. See my post http://www.thestandard.org.nz/?p=2963 for the substantive issue. ]

  117. r0b 118

    Yes Nick, Glenn is pissed, no doubt about it. He expected Labour to leap to his defence when accused by an NZF MP of lying. Should Labour have done that? To summarise my comment just above – should Labour be in the business of manipulating politics in favour of its largest financial donor? Is that really what you want?

    My answer is no. Glenn had to be expendable, political donations to a party shouldn’t mean that the Government is dedicated to protecting you and your interests. The Government is about the interests of all NZ.

  118. burt 119

    The PM is still not getting this integrity goes before expediency thing is she;

    PM: Peters gets his say tonight, then all bets are off

    Miss Clark said this afternoon she retained confidence in Mr Williams.

    Now what happened last time Mike Williams word was tested against Owen Glenn’s over the interest free loan ?

    What happened when the PM took Winston’s word over Owen Glenn’s ?

    It’s just bizarre that she can show so much poor judgement is there some kind of death wish thing going on because clearly the time to cut her losses was probably back in Feb .

  119. Felix 120

    I suppose she should just resign then, eh burt.

  120. burt 121

    rOb

    My answer is no. Glenn had to be expendable, political donations to a party shouldn’t mean that the Government is dedicated to protecting you and your interests. The Government is about the interests of all NZ.

    Glenn had to be expendable what??? He has done nothing wrong, he is not a liability to the govt. Actually he was an asset to the govt till the govt decided that the voting public didn’t need to know how much money he had donated to them and their coalition poodles.
    The best interests of NZ would have been served by declaring his donations openly and transparently not by denigrating him for telling the truth .
    You have it all ass about face rOb.

    Felix

    What happened last time Mike Williams word was tested against Owen Glenn’s ???? Can you answer that question then we can talk about if she should resign.

  121. mike 122

    “The Government is about the interests of all NZ.’

    rOb: if this is so why did helen stay quiet when she knew winston was misleading “all of NZ”

    Is her new standard one that its OK to lie as long as its for a good cause?

  122. r0b 123

    Glenn had to be expendable what???

    I was using Glenn’s language Burt, Glenn said he felt that way, and that Labour should have jumped to his defence.

    My question is, should Labour in fact have done so (or if you like – why the hell didn’t they?). And my answer is outlined above, to run the Government to suit a Party donor would be wrong. HC let Peters and Glenn sort it out (looks like Peters lost), as she should have – to take sides to defend a Labour donor would be far to close to “selling out” and so on. A no win situation for Labour really.

    Anyway, got to go until much later. Have fun kiddies.

  123. kisekiman 124

    Labour was forced to cobble a Government together with Peters and arguably used it’s influence with it’s biggest donor to assist him with his financial issues, which he then went to great lengths to conceal. It must make your average Labourite choke having to deal with a guy like Peters but they did it. Why? As Rob so eloquently puts it: To gain and retain the legislative agenda. To the less articulate: To hold on to power at any cost.

    Little surprise then that HC should do nothing and in that sense I have no real disagreement with this Blog but the methods employed since before the last election have not heaped the Clark Government in glory.

    [lprent: I’d say that it is a condition of MMP that you have to work with other parties. National has done it (with NZF). I’m afraid that a holier than thou attitude just doesn’t work in politics. ]

  124. Felix 125

    Not a very high standard of evidence required to convict in the court of burt.

    Do you know something that the rest of us don’t? Or are you just talking out of your inebriated arse as usual?

  125. burt 126

    Felix

    Can you explain why you assert I’m inebriated. Once we get past the personal attack stuff we can debate the substance, when you are ready you might want to answer the question rather than jump to conclusions like you accuse me of doing.

    Incase you forgot the question while taking a shot at me.

    What happened last time Mike Williams word was tested against Owen Glenn’s ????

  126. Ben R 127

    “What happened last time Mike Williams word was tested against Owen Glenn’s ????”

    Turned out he was an “unmitigated falsifier of veracity”? Nice new phrase to enter the political lexicon.

  127. Felix 128

    Why do I think you’re inebriated burt?

    Because you shout and piss and moan like a surly drunk, and you insist that people answer questions which are only of interest to you.

    Try capital letters next time, that’ll make it relevant.

    Bye bye drunk, I’m off to have one myself.

  128. gobsmacked 129

    Well, if Owen Glenn is the new voice of truth, then Tariana Turia must be a liar. He says that meeting on the yacht, that offer of money to the Maori Party, never happened. A “fabrication”, says Owen. But Turia insisted it did.

    Now John Key has said that he needs to be able to look his Ministers in the eye and trust them, because Saint John has standards, so we can be sure that any time now he’ll be making a bold, principled announcement … that he cannot work with Tariana Turia, and therefore her party. Unless she gives – what was the phrase – a credible explanation?

    Any time now.

    John?

  129. kisekiman 130

    You’ve raised a good point Gobsmacked. I’d like to hear more about the offer of money to the Maori Party as well and who suggested it might have been a good idea.

  130. Razorlight 131

    Helen Clark dd not need to disclose to the public what she had been told by Owen in a private and confidential conversation.

    But where she made a huge mistake was not making further enquiries with Owen and Winston behind closed doors. When she knew there was this conflict she should have done what has now been done in the public forum. By doing so she would have avoided the current circus and in the long run better protected Winston.

    He has dug a huge hole over the past 6 months and tonight has continued to dig. She is falling into the hole with him when she could have asked the questions a long time ago and shown some leadership.

  131. r0b 132

    Yes well 20:20 hindsight is a wonderful thing RL. It must be, there’s so much of it about.

  132. Swampy 133

    Everyone knows that the Hollow Men by Nicky Hager is not a publication that should be considered historically accurate. It does not meet any known historical standards of reputability that would be accepted in the academic community, regardless of the propositions it makes.

    It is fascinating to see that the standard for judging Winston Peters is the standard of another major political party. The law does not judge by such principals, but by absolutes. Would you like to judge Winston by the standard of Labour’s misappropriated $800,000 pledge card funds?

  133. Go the Right 134

    One thing always puzzled me about the last Election now we have the answer.

    If you remember the night National was ahead all the Political commentators were saying its looking like a National Government.

    The camera pans over to Mike Williams no definitely not he said we still have the South Auckland vote to come in that will get us through.

    He was right of course but not only did they take them to the voting booths in buses they gave them KFC vouchers just like Owen told them to so they would vote Labour what a brilliant strategy on how to buy an Election.

    Mike rang Owen Gleefully on the day (according to Owen) to tell how well the Master plan was working. I guess with the fun Police about this year it will be Subway Vouchers!!

  134. burt 135

    Go the Right

    Williams has denied that, but did you notice the technicality in the allegation Owen Glenn made vs the denial by Williams?

    Glenn said: They had the lunch on Sunday.
    Williams said: I didn’t buy them lunch on election day.

    So both could easily be telling the truth, just the reporters didn’t notice the technicality that what Glenn said and what Williams denied were two different things.

    How sad is politics in NZ when we get down to having to guess who is telling the truth? So much for the highest ethical standards when voters are required to guess who is honest and who is not in parliament.

  135. gobsmacked 136

    Go the Right

    What you’ve just alleged is that Owen Glenn personally proposed, financed and then covered up a very serious crime. You might want to think that one through a little more.

  136. lprent 137

    GTR: Reference or is this just something you’re making up?

    There was an active campaign to get people in those south auckland seats to get people out to vote. They have some of the lowest voting percentages of all of the electorates.

    However they did not offer gifts – that would be an offense under the electoral act 1993 (and the EFA) and I’d have expected a complaint to be made to either the electoral commission or the police. You should be able to point to a reference of that happening. I’m betting that you cannot – in which case you are just bullshitting on some urban myth.

    Labour probably helped organise transport to the polling booths and special votes. All the parties on the left do that because it is important to make it as easy as possible for people to vote. For that matter the electoral commission does it as well.

    The booths in the south auckland seats are huge and the votes they take are accordingly large as well. They take longer to count than small booths in rural electorates. So the number arrive later. The same happens for the large booths in other electorates (like edendale school in my electorate).

    To me, based on previous elections, I was aware that the Nat’s had lost by about 8pm on election night 2005 from a spreadsheet that one of the people was running. They hadn’t made a high enough percentage in the small booths to overcome the expected result in the larger booths in urban electorates. It is a pity that on the night the commentators on the media can’t do maths very well.

  137. burt 138

    lprent

    Your argument falls flat at this point.

    that would be an offense under the electoral act 1993 (and the EFA)

    If there hadn’t been other alledged breaches that were retrospectively validated resulting in the killing off of the Darnton vs Clark case then we might believe that the electoral laws were not something of a play thing for power hungry politicians.

    As it stands there has been “nothing illegal” for more than 14 years under the Electoral Act because retrospective validations made sure of that.

  138. burt 139

    lprent

    Glenn said Williamns bought them lunch on the Sunday, Williams said he didn’t buy them lunch on the day of the election. Why do you think Williams didn’t just say he never offered any incentives at all but specifically referred to the election day when Glenn said the day after the election.

    I smell a rat and lets be honest about this – if conspiracy theories are valid for a minister in the Labour-led govt then they are valid for a commentor in a blog…

  139. r0b 140

    As it stands there has been “nothing illegal’ for more than 14 years under the Electoral Act because retrospective validations made sure of that.

    Burt, I know for a fact that you know and understand what that legislation actually did, so why are you spreading lies about it? And why didn’t your party, ACT, vote to keep the Darnton court case alive if it was so important Burt? Doesn’t ACT care about justice?

    It’s disappointing to see you slipping gradually back to these lies when we spent so long understanding this stuff.

  140. burt 141

    rOb

    We have had the discussion about Rodney’s stance on retrospective validation and to explain it to you I needed to use a dictionary reference to explain what “that” was all about. You continued to misquote Rodney and made a complete fool of yourself. Tread carefully rOb, my patience for your fine use of words to distort this has worn very thin. Don’t make me link to prove how stupid you were inferring that Rodney wanted RV to hide things.

    However, did you notice that Williams denied something different to what Glenn alledged ?

  141. r0b 142

    Burt, you’re so cute when you’re angry. Please link to whatever you like. And please stop spreading lies Burt.

  142. higherstandard 144

    So what has WP got on the Labour party that has the PM still refusing to act ?

  143. r0b 145

    burt explains what “that’ means to rOb

    Ohhh, ouch, you really got me there Burt! What a knockout!

    But thanks for linking to our old thread. You do recall that you actually did learn all about retrospective validation and what it did and didn’t do. Which makes it all the sadder that you are spreading cheap lies as you have just above. Shame on you Burt. Grow up.

  144. Matthew Pilott 146

    HS – due process!

  145. bill brown 147

    Now we know why HC didn’t want to talk to OG at the business school opening: say anything within earshot of him and he’ll call a fcuking press conference!

  146. burt 148

    rOb

    Distractions distractions…. Yes I did get you trying to make it look like Rodney had the same low ethical standards as Labour when Rodney was actually doing a great job of showing how self serving Labour are and how wrong the RV actually was.

    However, did you notice that Williams denied something different to what Glenn alleged ?

  147. r0b 149

    Well Burt, in the vanishingly tiny chance that anyone is actually interested, they can look at the old thread themselves and see.

    However, did you notice that Williams denied something different to what Glenn alleged ?

    Can’t say that I did notice no. If you want to make a case then I suggest you find and link to the original source, and tell us all what you think it means. Knock yourself out. I’ll alert the Pulitzer committee.

  148. r0b 150

    Well, interesting. Thank you Gordon Campbell – a real journalist. Well worth reading the whole thing to anyone who has followed this thread:
    http://election08.scoop.co.nz/gordon-campbell-winston-peters-rebuttal-of-glenn/

  149. Go the Right 151

    I find this Story on Stuff absolutely amazing Today. Firstly Peter’s denied even being at the Karaka Sales in 2006 . He said he saw Glenn there in 2007

    That was until he got busted by someone who took his Photo and put it in the Papers with 2006 date on it. Now he says oh yes I was there but not with Owen Glenn. How can anyone ever believe anything he says.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/4689290a6160.html

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  • Government accounts show strong economy
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  • Ministers approve application to expand Waihi mine
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  • Tuia 250 Voyage flotilla launches with tribute to tangata whenua
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    7 days ago
  • Visit to advance trade agenda with Europe and the Commonwealth
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  • Boost for women in high performance sport
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  • Parent support to help retain skilled migrants
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  • Senior NZDF Officer to lead Peacekeeping Mission in the Sinai Peninsula, Egypt
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  • Nurses star as Govt rebuilds health workforces
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  • New agricultural trade envoy appointed
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  • Pacific and Māori voyaging heritage celebrated for Tuia 250
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  • NZ Government establishes innovative, industry-focused Airspace Integration Trials Programme
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  • Safety upgrades and certainty for Ōtaki highway
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  • Playing our part to support refugees in our region and the world
    New Zealand playing its part in Asia-Pacific and globally are behind changes announced today to the Coalition Government’s three year refugee quota policy, Immigration Minister Iain Lees-Galloway says. “We are proud to be a welcoming and inclusive nation committed to supporting some of the world’s most vulnerable people to rebuild ...
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  • Supporting thriving inclusive communities
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  • Takahē population flying high
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  • New Zealand makes further climate commitments
    New Zealand is today taking action to reduce the potent global warming hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) gases, Climate Minister James Shaw and Associate Environment Minister Eugenie Sage announced today. “The global agreement to reduce these potent greenhouse gases is another step in New Zealand’s commitment to reduce global warming. It is estimated ...
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