Flippin’ Bill

Written By: - Date published: 3:39 pm, August 5th, 2009 - 118 comments
Categories: uncategorized - Tags:

According to the Companies Office, Bill English lives at an address in Karori in Wellington.

This address is publicly available on the Companies Office website as he is registered as a shareholder in Resolution Farms Limited, whose shareholders are Simon William English and Mary Agnes English.

Like every other citizen who is a shareholder and director in a company his address is publicly available.

But Bill says to Parliament that his real address is in Dipton, in rural Southland. This is so he can claim that the taxpayer stump up for his rent for the family home.

In Britain, this was called “flipping” – changing address so that the more expensive house could be claimed on.

News that Bill is now offering to pay half back is only half right. He has lived in Wellington for years and should pay it all back.

Update: English’s residential address has been removed. While his place of residence is a legitimate matter of public interest and the point of this post, some have pointed out that the exact address is not necessary for the substance of this article. It’s disappointing to see some people jump to conclusions over the motivations behind the post. There was certainly no intention to be spiteful. This was a simple matter of using information that English has put on the public record for the purpose of public debate.

118 comments on “Flippin’ Bill”

  1. John Dalley 1

    Well it’s about flipping time he resigned.

  2. Peter Johns - bigoted troll in jerkoff mode 2

    diddums

  3. BLiP 3

    The Right Honourable Acting Prime Minister Lord Of Flipping Sir Double Dipton. AKA: that greedy grasping grubby grovelly grommet.

  4. The Voice of Reason 4

    Hats off to Irish Bill who predicted late last night that the Field story would be a one day wonder. And big ups to Bill English for making IB’s prediction come true.

    Lead stories on Stuff and the Herald this arvo? Double Dipton’s about face. Field doesn’t even get on the page. Worth, Lee, Douglas and now English. More lame ducks than the first Saturday in May!

  5. randal 5

    baby you’re just a.
    baby you’re just a.
    baby you’re just a three dollar bill!

  6. Tim Ellis 6

    So now an anonymous blogger at the Standard reaches a new low by publishing the home address of a government minister.

    Wasn’t there an uproar some time back when a right wing blog published the home address of a labour party activist?

    • toad 6.1

      Tim, this is publicly listed information that anyone can obtain from the Companies Office – even you if you’d bothered to look.

      Vastly different from following a Minister home to see where they live and then publishing the address. This is something that Bill English has chosen, by registering his company at that address, to make public.

      • Tim Ellis 6.1.1

        Toad, an enormous amount of information is publicly available, including electoral roll data and property information data. I suspect a lot of information is publicly available about Green MPs’ property holdings and where they live.

        How about you show your fairness by publishing, oh, I don’t know, Sue Kedgeley’s home address? It’s publicly available, too.

        • Pascal's bookie 6.1.1.1

          “How about you show your fairness by publishing, oh, I don’t know, Sue Kedgeley’s home address?”

          Why would that be fair? Has she been claiming that she both lives there, and does not live there?

        • Kevin Welsh 6.1.1.2

          That’s Mrs Sue Kedgley to you Tim.

        • BLiP 6.1.1.3

          Perhaps if, like your mate Bill English, she had been using legal loopholes to rort the system to live in a mansion, then defended the action, then did a flip-flop and said she would pay the money back, and, further, her house with the number on it had already been featured in the New Zealand Fox News Herald and other papers, maybe.

          Other wise – diddums.

          • Tim Ellis 6.1.1.3.1

            Unlike, for example, Mr Goff who claimed an accommodation allowance to live in Wellington while owning a property in Wellington. But that wasn’t a rort as far as you’re concerned BLiP, because it concerned a Labour Party minister.

            • snoozer 6.1.1.3.1.1

              How many times do you need explained to you the difference between owning a rental property on the one hand (Goff) and on the other hand moving out of a place, renting it to another MP, and moving into another place on the allowance specifically to take advantage of the opportunity to rort (what Key admits his ministers have been doing)?

              Of course Double Dipton goes one step further. he’s getting an allowance without even moving for a house he and his family would live in anyway.

            • BLiP 6.1.1.3.1.2

              That’s Mr BLiP, thank you.

    • snoozer 6.2

      I thought John A was his real name?

      The house has been on the news every night sice Saturday, the address is publicly listed and it’s where his company is registered. John’s simply pointing out that they’re the same place.

  7. Pat 7

    Once the review is finished I would like to see all Nat ministers and MPs pay back all expenses deemed to have been out of order. Backdated to the election last year.

    I don’t think Labour should be asked to do the same for their 9 years in power. They can do whatever they want, and keep their past hidden under a rock, for all I care. I will be happy so long as the Nats clean themselves up and start a new regime of transparency. Other parties can decide whether to join in or not.

  8. aj 8

    Tim – his address is published on-line at http://www.companies.govt.nz/cms

    go take up you problem with them.

    • Daveski 8.1

      I thought the question that the left is supposed to ask is what was the purpose of providing the information in the first place. I’m almost certain said Labour person’s address can be found on line but that doesn’t legitmise it.

      • Pascal's bookie 8.1.1

        I think the point is that John Minto wasn’t on the one hand;

        pretending that his house wasn’t the place where he lived in order to throw the mortgage on the taxpayers tab

        whilst on the other hand;

        stating that his house was in fact where he lived.

        • Daveski 8.1.1.1

          Yep PB, I have no issues with the rorting altho that also allows me to point out that he’s not the only one.

          The fact that his address is already online doesn’t suggest it’s the right thing to publicise it here.

          • Pascal's bookie 8.1.1.1.1

            Fair enough. I agree that the detail of the address should come down. My point is that that the address is in fact the issue here, so the comparison with Whale-blog’s Minto post is unfair.

            Just curious, who else is running this particular rort?

            • Tim Ellis 8.1.1.1.1.1

              PB, John A could have said: “The address listed for Mr English is his Karori home, the same address for Resolution farms…” and made his point perfectly well, without publishing the address where his wife and children live.

              Mr English clearly spends the bulk of his time at his Wellington home, which is no secret, and the reason why his wife and family live in Wellington, and is probably the reason this is the address used for service of company documents. This does not preclude him from receiving an accommodation allowance for that address and maintaining another home in his electorate.

              I don’t know if any non-Wellington based Labour ministers had children living with them in Wellington in the last government, but I expect all Ministers spent the bulk of their time in Wellington, and they would have been entitled to an accommodation allowance as well.

            • Pascal's bookie 8.1.1.1.1.2

              I’m glad that you agree that the Karori property is his home. Wellington is where he lives by any normal understanding of the term, and he has done for some time. His rort is in claiming that he does not live in Wellington, which entitled him to extra money.

              Children are irrelevant really.

    • Tim Ellis 8.2

      Oh I’m sure if you camped outside Parliament and stalked him home one night you’d be able to find out where he lives too, aj. That doesn’t make it right to publish it on a blog.

      You can also no doubt find a lot of addresses on the electoral roll and in the phone book. Does that give you an excuse to publish it on the internet? I don’t think so.

      There was an outrage a number of years ago when a newspaper identified Helen Clark’s private home. Easy to find if you ask around in Mt Eden and Kingsland, but it doesn’t make it the right thing to do.

      Mr English’s six children live at this address. Would you be happy with somebody printing Mr Goff’s home address? I would hope not.

      Disgusted.

      • Kevin Welsh 8.2.1

        As I said yesterday Tim, it’s Ms Helen Clark.

      • Lanthanide 8.2.2

        Didn’t Bill English give implied consent to have his details published, so that the taxpaying public of New Zealand can make up their own minds with all the details present? Face it, Bill’s address is a relevant detail in this issue.

        Or do only mothers on the benefit do that when they talk to the media?

      • Quoth the Raven 8.2.3

        Tim – As aj points out its public knowledge. The house was shown on the news last night are you going to make a complaint? I would think you have to so we know you’re not just running distractions again and actually have some concern for Bill’s children. If you don’t have such concern and are just being an annoying inveigler on a blog one would have to think you’re a bit of a dick, Tim.

        Your shrill defence of National has been falling flat of late, Tim.

        • BK Drinkwater 8.2.3.1

          Just because something’s been published, it doesn’t follow that it’s cool to publicize it.

          • Quoth the Raven 8.2.3.1.1

            BK – I haven’t given my opinion either way on that and if you are going to try to put words in my mouth you can go fuck yourself whether you’re nice moderate lefty or a rabid righty. It appears to me that if Tim and you want to be consistent you should be complaining to TVNZ and 3 news.

            • BK Drinkwater 8.2.3.1.1.1

              Apologies QtR. My comment wasn’t really directed at you. I’m a terrible communicator, and I’m not quite sure why I put that particular comment there.

              If I were English, I would be complaining to TVNZ and 3News. This would open me up to accusations of trying to cover stuff up, but I’d bite that bullet.

              I stand behind my comment that publicizing the address of English’s family home is uncool.

              Apologies again. Truce?

            • Quoth the Raven 8.2.3.1.1.2

              Fair enough and you may be right I haven’t made my mind up either way.

  9. aj 9

    I’m all for rounding out the picture, like Paula Bennett

    • I’m sorry, but I’ve gotta ask: how precisely does this round out the picture? Does knowing the precise address where the DPM’s family live make any difference—any difference at all—to the debate. Wasn’t it sufficient to know that the house is in Karori? If not, why not? And if you don’t have a good answer, then I suggest you have a good long look at yourself in the mirror. You may not like what you see; intimidation and hypocrisy are ugly things indeed.

      • Tim Ellis 9.1.1

        Mr Drinkwater, it rounds out the picture because it allows aj to make a derogatory reference to Ms Bennett.

        • felix 9.1.1.1

          How is it derogatory to say you agree with Bennett?

          I suspect in your haste you’ve misread what was written, but even so I think aj deserves an apology from you for that smear, Tim.

          • Tim Ellis 9.1.1.1.1

            Bugger off Felix. Saying “all for rounding out the picture, like Paula Bennett”, is a gutter reference to Paula Bennett’s weight. You know it and I know it.

            • felix 9.1.1.1.1.1

              Actually Tim I think you need to read it again. I thought the same thing at first but the sentence doesn’t make sense that way.

              You’re seeing what you want to see.

              And that’s Dr. Felix to you, bucko.

            • BLiP 9.1.1.1.1.2

              That’s a pretty heavy accusation to make and, in this instance, I suspect the scales of justice may weigh against you. Twat.

            • aj 9.1.1.1.1.3

              Tim is quite qrong and Felix is quite right, thank you.

            • chris 9.1.1.1.1.4

              ha you said it tim

      • toad 9.1.2

        BK and Tim – diversionary tactics. The facts are that English registered the company at that address and registered his own address as a Director at that address.and the companies register is a public register.

        It reveals:

        Company Number 1879429 View Certificate Of Incorporation

        Company RESOLUTION FARMS LIMITED

        Incorporated 30-OCT-2006

        Current Status REGISTERED

        Entity Type Company

        Constitution Filed No

        Annual Return Filing Month June

        Previous Names

        No Previous Names on record

        Address Details
        Registered Office
        [address removed]
        Karori
        Wellington

        Address for Service
        [address removed]
        Karori
        Wellington

        Directors
        Name Date Appointed:

        ENGLISH, Mary Agnes 30-OCT-2006
        [address removed] , Karori, Wellington
        ENGLISH, Simon William 30-OCT-2006
        [address removed] , Karori, Wellington

        Share Parcels

        Total Number of shares 100

        Number of Shares 50
        Shareholder(s) ENGLISH, Mary Agnes [address removed] , Karori, Wellington

        Number of Shares 50
        Shareholder(s) ENGLISH, Simon William [address removed] , Karori, Wellington

        Now the other thing I find curious about this is that Sir Double Dipton has a different personal address registered as a Director of the company to the one he has registered as a shareholder of it.

        Another undeclared property? Or has he just not caught up with the paperwork.

        Wasn’t it sloppiness with the paperwork of this sort that saw David Parker stood down as a Minister for a period until it was sorted out?

        • BK Drinkwater 9.1.2.1

          Toad, I’m not trying to divert attention away from the English controversy: I’m pointing out that publishing a politician’s home address is seriously uncool. I’m doing that in the forum I regard as most appropriate: viz the comment thread to the blog post that just put up an open invite to the crazies to harrass the DPM’s kids. By the way: I thought you folks here didn’t like that kind of “dog-whistle politics”.

          Imagine DPF publisinge Phil Goff’s home address if there were some controversy involving his accommodation arrangements. Would you leap to Farrar’s defence?

          It’s not necessarily right to publicize information just because it’s been published.

        • snoozer 9.1.2.2

          I suspect, toad, that the second Wellington address there is the oen they were living at before they moved to [address deleted].. just sloppy work on keeping the books in order.. not really important… it’s not like he’s minister of finance or anything…

          Actually, shouldn’t his ownership in this company, not the Dipton farm, be what he declares in the register of interests?

          • toad 9.1.2.2.1

            He did declare the shareholding in the company in his pecuniary interests register. I’ll give him credit for that one, but there still seem to be a lot of unanswered questions.

        • Doh 9.1.2.3

          geez Toad, as you are on the public teat maybe we should reveal your identity and home address

  10. Derek 10

    There’s legitimate public interest in Bill English’s address. A picture of his house has been shown all over the TV news for the last few nights and it’s currently on the front page of the Herald.

    There was no public interest in releasing John Minto’s address details. Tim Ellis is just trying to misdirect the issue into The Standard’s supposed moral failings rather than the issue at hand. It’s an age-old tactic of spin doctors like Tim. More fool those on the left who try and debate this guy in good faith.

    • Anita 10.1

      Can you please describe the “legitimate public interest” in his address?

      • toad 10.1.1

        It is that he is alleged to be using different addresses for different purposes, and by doing so is alleged to have been maximising his pecuniary gain.

        I think that the status of each of the addresss he has been using is therefore very clearly in the public interest.

        • Anita 10.1.1.1

          One can discuss the addresses, the number of addresses and so on without printing the addresses. Really.

      • lprent 10.1.2

        I’m not that happy with that either….. I didn’t read the post, just the comments. But you saw this link as well?

        http://greenvoices.wordpress.com/2009/08/05/could-he-be-sir-triple-dipton/

        Read the post as well now. Problem is that the whole question of rort’ing is tied up with where he lives. Difficult to separate the address from the question.

        • Anita 10.1.2.1

          lprent,

          Yeah, I’ve had a grump over there too.

          The post would work just as well if it read

          According to the Companies Office, Bill English lives in Karori, Wellington.

  11. sausage fingers 12

    Why were all you Standardistas you so outraged by this:

    http://www.thestandard.org.nz/too-far/#comments ?

    Yet you happily list Bill English’s address. The difference between showing a photo of the house and listing the address would not seem to account for the outrage.

    • BLiP 12.1

      Bill English is a public servant demanding the nation “tighten its belt” so as to preserve value in the economy. He is also using carefully crafted legal instruments to double-dip in his expenses. Also, by putting his expenses into the public arena, it is important that all the information be laid on the table so that we have the full picture and, further, Bill has given his implied consent.

      • sausage fingers 12.1.1

        The shorter BLiP: it’s different because it suits us.

      • Anita 12.1.2

        If I didn’t think you were only joking and making a (totally justified) attack on Paula Bannett’s behaviour I would point out that even if English gave his implied consent his kids didn’t.

        Politicians’ kids pay many prices for their parents’ jobs, there’s no reason to add to that.

    • Eddie 12.2

      Two mistakes, sausage. First, to give The Standard a hive mind. Second, to mistake a deliberate attempt at incitement from the permed one with John A’s use of an address to illustrate a point in a legitimate debate on issues of public importance.

      Obviously some have argued subsequently that the actual residential address wasn’t necessary for the argument and pointed out some of the issues around publishing it, so John took the feedback onboard and decided to remove it.

      All seems pretty sensible to me, only blown up by the usual right-wing trolls who want to continue to distract from the real issue, and the intemperate response from some on the left who prefer to assume the worst of their comrades rather than give them the benefit of the doubt.

  12. Tim Ellis 13

    Mr Goff’s residential addresses in Wellington and Auckland are publicly discernable information too. By the standard of some of the commenters here, the fact that Mr Goff is receiving a taxpayer subsidy for his Wellington accommodation is reason to publish a photo, and the addresses, of these properties.

    The fact that Mr Goff’s family might reside at these properties is “irrelevant”, according to some.

    This is not an excuse to publish MPs’ private addresses. Toad, I hold you with as much contempt as I do John A.

    • toad 13.1

      Tim, those addresses are already publicly published – on the Companies Register – at Bill English’s initiative.

      The faux outrage astounds me.

      Why complain about me republishing something that is already public information that you, me, or anyone can access? It is, with English’s consent, public information.

      • Sausage fingers 13.1.1

        Fair enough, Toad. So you’re OK with publishing Minto’s address since he allowed it to be registered with Land Information New Zealand.

      • Doh 13.1.2

        “Why complain about me republishing something that is already public information that you, me, or anyone can access?”

        what – you mean like all the fuss you kicked up with Paula Bennett?

  13. felix 14

    I tend to agree with Anita and (!) Tim.

    Just because Bennett and Key think it’s ok to publicize people’s personal details doesn’t make it ok.

    Just because Bennett and Key think they can infer consent to do so doesn’t make it ok.

    The point could be made just as well without using the street number and then we could be having a good laugh about how much cooler we are than Bennett and Key for it.

    • toad 14.1

      felix, what John A and I published is already publicly available information that Bill and Mary English consented to being publicly available by lodging those addresses in their Companies Register.

      I have no idea if either of those addresses correpond to their residential home. If they didn’t want their residential home’s address publicly available, they could have used the address of their solicitor, as many people do.

      • Anita 14.1.1

        It would have cost you absolutely nothing to remove the street numbers, that’s the traditional way of dealing with exactly this. It’s why John Key’s home residence is always described by the street name and never by the number.

        There’s a good reason why the MSM do it, in fact several but I’ll stick with this one, that address is not just Bill English (Deputy PM)’s address, it is also Bill English (father)’s, and the address of all the little Englishes.

      • sausage fingers 14.1.2

        No. That’s wrong. You have to put the director’s usual residential address.

        Once again, I therefore assume you’re OK with everyone knowing where Minto lives on the same basis.

        I happen to agree with you but it just seems a bit funny that all you lefties were so outraged when a picture was published of Minto’s house but, since then, you’ve considered it OK to publish pictures of two of Key’s houses and English’s house.

  14. Tim Ellis 15

    It is also obvious that Eddie did not republish a picture from any of the media in his earlier post identifying Mr English’s house. He took a screenshot from google streetview, knowing the address. His defence “oh, but it was already in the media” is a lie. He already knew the address, looked it up on streetview, and took a grab of it.

    • Wayne 15.1

      More misdirection from Tim. The whole house is up on nzherald.co.nz and it’s a very prominent place in Karori. The address is on public record. You’re just trying to deflect attention from the real issue here.

      http://media.nzherald.co.nz/webcontent/image/jpg/enghouse_300x200.jpg

      • Tim Ellis 15.1.1

        I’m sorry Wayne but you’re wrong. Eddie’s picture was not taken from the Herald. It was taken from Google Streetview. Eddie knew the address when he published the photo, because he had to look it up on google streetview to do it.

    • toad 15.2

      The moat, Tim?

      I thought it was one of the most clever graphics (although technically a bit lacking) anyone has come up with on any blog.

      And I have no idea where the house concerned is, or if it one owned or lived in by Bill English.

      If you are claiming that the image is Bill English’s house Tim, then it is you who are breaching his privacy, not Eddie, who never claimed that.

  15. The Voice of Reason 16

    Interesting attempt at outrage, Tim, but if English was the least bit bothered about his home address coming out he wouldn’t use it as his company’s registered office. And as for the kids? Bet they’re all Hurricane supporters who haven’t got the foggiest idea where Dipton is. Hell, I’m not even convinced Bill knows.

    But, for all that, I think it would have been better that the Standard hadn’t published the address, just so we don’t have to wade through a bunch of pompous posts feigning concern for NZ’s best paid bludger.

  16. lprent 17

    Anita. I’ll have a look at the post when I get near a computer again. An iPhone is great fof most things, bug not for editing posts if I decide to do it.

    I do feel a bit conflicted with being ‘nice’ to Simon English. This was the idiot who put out a press statement about The Standard in early 2008 about the ownership and operation of the site. He never did bother to retract that.

    I have a strong sense of “what goes around, comes around”.

    • Anita 17.1

      I’m not asking you to be nice to Simon William English, I’m asking you to treat some children with care and respect.

      • toad 17.1.1

        Hey, Anita, we’re not going round to Bill and Mary’s place to throw stones through the windows. We just want to know what the financial arrangements that have been brought into question actually are.

        But as the Taito Phillip Field conviction has revealed, allegations of impropriety need to be followed up.

        If we all said “Oh, let’s not intrude on his privacy” in relation to Field’s contracts on his properties, he would still be an MP and would not be going to jail in October.

        • Anita 17.1.1.1

          You didn’t need to put the street numbers, the two streets (at the very most) are all that’s needed.

          I’m not saying you’re planning to throw rocks at the kids, but I am saying that the kids don’t deserve any more impact from their parents’ choices about their father’s job that necessary, that this is unnecessary, and that you’ve succeeded in both making them less safe and (I think we would both have to assume) making them feel less safe and more intruded upon.

          Even if you believe the Bill and Mary chose to pay this price you cannot believe the children did.

          • The Voice of Reason 17.1.1.1.1

            Did you have the same sympathy for the kids of the solo mums Basher Bennett dealt to last week, Anita?

            • Anita 17.1.1.1.1.1

              Hello what?

              Yes, actually I believe I’m on the record saying what Bennett did was Bad and Wrong.

            • gingercrush 17.1.1.1.1.2

              I think it was clear Anita was outraged about what Paula Bennett did last week. Anita doesn’t need me to defend her. But from what I have seen of her and the posts she has made.She has been quick to criticise where she has seen something wrong.

  17. outofbed 18

    If he needed all the allowance to keep his family together
    and now is paying half back
    That must mean .. there now isn’t enough money to keep the family together
    which logically must mean that all this attacks on “poor Bill have now spit his family up
    shame on you all, I say

  18. Luke H 19

    … and there is goes; the post has been edited.

    That’s a very sensible decision; I’d like to buy whoever made that call (to retract the street name and number) a beer.

  19. ross 20

    > I’ll stick with this one, that address is not just Bill English (Deputy PM)’s address, it is also Bill English (father)’s, and the address of all the little Englishes.

    What’s your point?

    A more important issue is what is the value of [address removed] and what did it cost the Englishes to buy? Presumably it has increased in value and will continue to do so until it’s sold. Taxpayers have a stake in this property and will continue to have one while the Englishes live there. My question is: will Bill English do the honourable thing and pay a proportion of the appreciated value of his property when he ceases to be an MP or sells the house, whichever comes first? The Englishes benefit twice by receiving taxpayer handouts for owning a property that is increasing in value over time.

  20. ross 21

    > you’ve succeeded in…making them less safe .

    Got any evidence for that?

  21. Andrei 22

    You are seem to be missing the point about this residence.

    The “Honourable” William English as a non Wellington MP can can claim an allowance of $24,000 PA for living expenses and live where-ever he wants ie his nice house in Karori with his nice wife and kids.

    But this is not enough for The “Honourable” William English why settle for that when you can have more. Simply transfer the title of your nice house in Karori to your wife, have it declared an Official Ministerial House (another entitlement but one which means foregoing the above mentioned $24,000 PA allowance if taken up I understand) and have the crown rent it for you to live in just as have done for the past three years or so. No move required.and the peasants get pay your mortgage for you..

    Whine about wanting to keep the family together when caught

  22. outofbed 23

    leave him Bill alone ..Home wreckers!

  23. The Voice of Reason 24

    Anita (above). Whoops, my bad. Thought you were helping spin the kids first line. Glad to be corrected.

    • Anita 24.1

      No worries 🙂

      My biggest objection to the publishing of the address was always the kids, if they didn’t have children I still would’ve thought it was bad and wrong, but not so egregious.

      I do find it disturbing to be arguing on the same side as the right wing spinners tho, it makes me feel unclean 🙂

  24. toad 25

    Anita said: Argh just noticed Toad’s comment lives on unedited

    I still think it was a legitimate psot Anita. But I’m quite happy for it to be edited to *** [Street Address], [suburb].

    Can’t do it myself though here, as I have no editing rights. Will do it on g.blog though – just trying to argue the facts here, and the actual addreses are not relevant – just the fact they are different is.

    But, Standard editors, feel free to edit my comment. I want this to focus on the substance of what Natinal Ministers have done, not on tangential issues.

    • lprent 25.1

      Fixed up.

      Added to auto-moderation to stop people adding it on this site.

    • Doh 25.2

      Toad – your hypocrisy stuns me considering your outcry over Minto and Bennet.
      Both were equally public information

      What was it your Sue Bradford said – “absolutely disgraceful and a breach of privacy”

      pffft

      [lprent: Have a weeks ban for being a egregious troll who obviously doesn’t understand privacy laws (and because I’m grumpy).

      In neither case was the information ‘public’. In the WINZ case there is a high probability that Bennett’s actions were illegal. The information that Whale’s cohort used was from the LINZ database, which explicitly says that it may not be used in the manner that the wanker over there used it.

      The companies office data carries no such restrictions. A partial loss of privacy is part of the cost of getting into business. ]

      • Anita 25.2.1

        lprent,

        Hey, can you point me to the restrictions on the LINZ data? I’ve been occasionally poking at the way QV are reselling it and that restriction might be the piece of the jigsaw I’m missing.

        (It’s a huge tangled mess of interacting legislation and changes of rules, and changes of roles and changes in contracting arrangements and funny ownership arrangements)

        • lprent 25.2.1.1

          Can’t right now – I’m playing with data that got landed on me at short notice.

          From what I remember it was a statement from QV or LINZ about what the data could or could not be used for. It is along the lines of a sales agreement about what rights you were purchasing. I read it once when I was accessing data about a property.

          Similar to the one on the dnc.org.nz site that protects me from people marketing my information (although that appears to have been watered down).

  25. Sausage fingers 26

    You know, Anita, it’s such a shame. You’ll never be any good at this game. You bruise too easily.

    • Anita 26.1

      Cheers for that.

      I suspect you’re misjudging me, but then again I’m probably misjudging you when that comment makes me think of an older man patronising the little girlie and patting her on the head to comfort her for the fact she’ll never make it in the real world.

  26. Sausage fingers 27

    Don’t complain to me. It’s (that reknowned mysoginist) Billy Bragg’s line.

  27. Derek 28

    Anita’s post over at Kiwipolitico was totally over the top. John’s response has been nothing but reasonable, and given the amount of vitriol Anita poured on him and the way she questioned his integrity he’s been remarkably restrained. I think Anita owes him an apology.

    • BLiP 28.1

      No. He owes Anita an explanation of why he tried to intimidate the English family. I’m not for a second saying that was his intention, but rather what led up to that effect and what can be done to prevent it happening again.

      Despite my flippant comments in this post, and as was said above by a wiser commentator, there’s a difference between information being publicly available and publicising it. I’m happy to emulate some of the Right’s tactics in debate but I’d rather not stoop to their nadir – it incites escalation (or, more accurately, “devolution’) from the nutters.

      • Derek 28.1.1

        What makes you think he was trying to do that?

        • BLiP 28.1.1.1

          Like I said, I don’t believe he was trying to do that, rather, it was the effect of what he did.

          To use an over-the-top example, why would extremists publish the addresses of those with whom they disagreed? Intimidation.

        • BLiP 28.1.1.2

          My initial response to your comment was not clear. I should have said “he owes an explanation as to why his post could have been interpreted as intimation”. My apologies to you and John A.

          • Eddie 28.1.1.2.1

            I’m just catching up with this but I find it strange. Does anyone truly believe John was trying to intimidate Bill English and his family? This is a blog, there’s no editorial checks, no team of researchers. You write your post and you hit the publish button.

            Sometimes that means you don’t consider all the possible consequences of your words or how some people might take them. Sometimes that means you make mistakes. Hell, I’ve made some myself. I think people should take John’s explanation, appreciate his quick response to the feedback and move on.

            • BLiP 28.1.1.2.1.1

              No. I do not believe there was any attempt at intimidation. I thought I’d made that clear. My initial response was too hasty and I pushed the button – which proves your point.

              (Note To Self: take a deep breath before hitting REPLY.)

      • Anita 28.1.2

        BLiP,

        John A owes me nothing. The only thing I ever argued that he ever owed anyone he did some time ago and with excellent grace.

        (For clarity, that is he removed the English children’s home address from the public sphere)

  28. SPC 29

    I presume MP’s and Ministers pay tax on their salary as others do. If others received travel allowances and accommodation allowances would they not be taxed? Fringe benefit/perks as income and also taxed?

    If there is no tax liability as occurs with tax paid benefits – do a form of means tests apply instead (income and assets of the MP/Minister and their partner)?

    I am at a loss to see why a Minister has a greater entitlement to help with accommodation when he receives an increase in pay on becoming a Minister. If it has something to do with promotion and salary package then it’s all taxable. If not, why the extra amount – it costs the same to house a person and or their family whatever job they have.

    I know this is far too generous, why not stay with the maximum allowance of $24,000 pa for MP’s (use for Ministers also as it seems close to an average Wellington family home rent cost. And tax the amount received as income (reducing it by 38 cents in the dollar – they receive enough pay to contribut towards their own housing costs).

    And a definition – if their family/partner is living with them it is the prime family home (so Bill would not qualify). However of course any Wellington based MP has other costs in representing an electorate (complicated with list MP’s – no doubt Roger will be at our tourist resort hotels for ACT party meetings) so should be claiming for their electorate accommodation costs and or “cost of” use of an owned home for this purpose – based on what this home could be rented out for if not used for this purpose (the same $24,000 maximum should apply).

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