Interesting week

Written By: - Date published: 12:46 pm, August 12th, 2012 - 163 comments
Categories: david shearer, john key, leadership - Tags:

It has been an interesting week for the leaders of the two main parties.

Key had a horrid week. His problems were self-inflicted. Following the deaths of two of our soldiers in Afghanistan, Key (with his usual ham-fisted international diplomacy) managed to insult Hungary, drawing a sharp diplomatic response, and possibly making life more difficult for our troops on the ground.

He then compounded his woes with a controversial decision to attend his son’s baseball game rather than the funerals of the dead soldiers. This sharply polarised reaction, all the way from the Herald’s loyal editorial: “Key does right thing being there for son”, to Kiwipolitico’s acerbic: “My kid is more important than your kid”. Interesting to note Shearer’s response:

A spokesman for Labour leader David Shearer reaffirmed he had nothing to say about Mr Key’s call… Blogger David Farrar credited Mr Shearer for not taking a stance, writing that “many Opposition Leaders would have used this tragedy to take a cheap swipe”.

Shearer is remaining true to his nature, and his objective, which is to be a different kind of politician, not buying in to “rival tribes” and “gotcha” politics. But Shearer had his own well publicised problems this week, with apparent internal divisions over David Cunliffe and gay marriage. Trying to span a middle ground is not playing well with many activists, who perceive Shearer as “beneficiary bashing” in a recent speech. (Matt McCarten questions whether Labour’s woes are due to Shearer, or the rest of the caucus failing to step up.)

In terms of these two leaders the 2014 election is shaping up as a contrast of styles between Key, by now very much a typical (and aggressive) politician with considerable “baggage”, and newcomer Shearer’s gentler approach, which may not be firm enough to weld his team together or fire up the base. We’ll see I guess, there are many long weeks to come before the election. But I think that this particular week is one that both leaders would rather forget.

163 comments on “Interesting week”

  1. Kiwi Steve 1

    Thank you Anthony for making some sensible analysis of the week. Matt was spot on in his article.

    What has been interesting about this week is that almost all of the criticism towards Labour has come from people who claim to be current or former Labour voters rather than the right. Party infighting has always been around, and not just in Labour, it is not an easy thing to fix. Shearer inherited his team and let’s be honest, if he could choose his team, how many would not be in parliament now? If he fires them, they will become independents as they hold a seat or it would force a by-election which, would just be seen as Labours costing taxpayers money.

    People are saying Labour doesn’t have a clear direction and that’s true. The reason is because Labour is still in the review process, which last I heard is due to be reported back in November. If Shearer came out now and said “this is our policy…” only for the review to find that Labour members do not agree with it, he would have to do a flip-flop and the media would destroy him.

    The big topic is his benefit bashing. Labours line is a fairer NZ. We on the left often point the finger at the top but sometimes we need to realise that there are issues at the bottom. The welfare system used to provide jobs and training to keep the unemployed and those with health issues in the job market. Upgrading skills and connecting with other people in the community is just as important as the money itself. The money provided is to help cover the basic costs and is not a long term solution as it’s simply not enough. I think, and it’s possible I’m wrong, the way David saw that person in his story is if he can get on a roof to? What it is about is accessing a person and giving them all the help they need. If the person in his story can do 5 hours painting a week then why not? Look, the story was not well handled in the context and David should have mentioned that it’s not fair ON THE SURFACE, and if he could do a little work then let’s help him achieve that, assuming his doctor is happy and he is confident he can handle it. Given the audience who are normally true blue, I can understand the way it was presented because Labour is seen as wanting to take money from the middle class to give to the poor making the middle class poorer.

    Unfortunately Labour will need to use terminology that we don’t like, myself included, but politics is a dirty game and he is up against one of the most popular prime ministers ever. As National have shown, what you say prior to the election is not always what you do in parliament.

    Former Labour President Mike Williams made a point that I agree with, why would Labour release all their policy over a year before the election? That means National would have more than enough time to rip all their policies to pieces and change the game. It’s the same reason that the All Blacks don’t talk about their game plan before the game. Most voters only remember the last year before an election, hence why Nation is doing the unpopular stuff now. If Labour released everything now they would have nothing new in the last year and voters would say they have no new ideas.

    It’s going to be a very tough few years for Labour supporters as we are going to have to be patient while the game plays out. I’ve only started learning how politics really work over the last 2 years and it’s really a tough game.

    • gobsmacked 1.1

      Shearer didn’t “inherit his team”. He has made a series of choices – his finance spokesman, his MPs’ portfolios, his advisers, his strategy, his speeches, his … everything. He’s the leader. He’s responsible.

      Why should we treat him like a 4 year old? He wanted the job, he took the job, and he’s not up to the job. If you need more time to work out the blindingly obvious, then take your time, but please don’t ask the rest of us to wait for you to catch up.

      • Pete George 1.1.1

        Don’t be so impatient.

        When Shearer inherits Government in 2014 or 2017 as long as he’s given sufficient space and time he should be able to imprint his own leadership on things by the mid 2020s. Once all the old school Labour MPs have finally retired.

      • Kiwi Steve 1.1.2

        Actually he did inherit the team. His choices were from those who won their seats and the party list, which was terrible and not done by him. Stuart Nash for example should have been high on the list and most likely would have been given a decent portfolio, possibly even on the front bench. Ditto for Kelvin Davis. Shearer did choose the positions but it’s not exactly like he has a wealth of talent to choose from.

        It doesn’t matter who is in charge of Labour, until the review is competed then Labour can’t express its direction as it doesn’t have one. The other option is to ignore the review, which is a collection of feedback from the membership and just go with what they think we want. Personally I’d prefer they waited to hear what their voters have to say rather than just doing what they feel might be what we want.

        • gobsmacked

          Shearer has made any number of policy statements (Cullen fund, GST, superannuation, water rights/Waitangi tribunal, roads, teacher performance, etc).

          Admittedly, they were expressed with his usual incoherence, so I can’t blame you for missing them. But he certainly hasn’t been waiting for “feedback from the membership”. He’s been getting his feedback from Mallard, Pagani and Parker.

          He is not a leader. He is a front man. And he’s not a very good one. You can work that out now, or later.

          Simple question: is there one interview – one speech – anything – that has impressed you over the past eight months? Anything that said “Vision, principles … or even just basic communication skills”? Anything at all?

          • Kiwi Steve

            Pretty much all those policy statements had little details owing to the fact he doesn’t know what the policy is yet. Not restarting the Cullen fund was something that was pointed out before the last election. GCT (I assumed that was what you meant by GST?) and superannuation are carried on from the last election. Water rights, he just said no one owns the water, which I believe was always the Labour line. Roads and teacher performance were touched on the last election. To your question about the speech, no, not to the point that you are getting at. They have been good, and I liked they spelled out a bit of his personal view, but they are not game changers. They were get to know me speeches. How are you going to have a game changing speech when you don’t know your direction?

            • Colonial Viper

              How are you going to have a game changing speech when you don’t know your direction?

              Why does Shearer not know which direction he is moving Labour in.

              • Kiwi Steve

                Because there is a Labour Party review underway that reports back in November. This review is a mixture of internal feedback but is manually made up of members feedback. If he sets policy now and the review says the opposite, he will look like a flip-flop. He will have some plans of his own, but he needs to include members feedback too.

                • Colonial Viper

                  *Shakes head*

                  The organisational review affects the running gear of the party.

                  Why should Shearer not already know what direction he wants to lead the party in, once the new running gear is in place.

            • just saying

              Shearer does consistently express a direction amidst all the waffle that makes up his speeches. The direction is rightward. The benebashing is but one example. Can you give any example of a leftward shift in direction, or do you agree that, to date the “policy” movement has all been rightwards..

              And it’s not like he started from a leftward point…

              • Kiwi Steve

                Not mining in conservation land. No to selling assets, which Labour has done many times in the past. GCT would be concidered left thinking by many. Investing in the green economy.

                • just saying

                  No, I was talking about any leftward change from the stated policies from before he took the helm, not Labour policy that predated him.

                  Rough list (from memory) of his policy movement to the right:
                  Schools need to shape -up
                  Public Service must accept cuts
                  No tax credits for beneficiary families
                  not reinstating the Cullen fund
                  Possibly rethinking the CGT
                  Defintiely no tax increases beyond a possible small rise to an undefined top-bracket
                  No government job-creation under a Labour government
                  Lots more smarming around the rich and powerful….

                  Considering how little of substance he has actually said, this shows a significant movement to the right.

              • vicks

                Examples of leftward shifts –

                Capital Gains Tax
                Raising the minimum wage
                Protection of smaller class sizes

          • seeker

            “Anything at all?”

            Yes Gobsmacked. See the end of my comment (12) @ 3.34pm

          • seeker

            Other surprisingly pertinent and effective sounbites I have heard from Labour this year were “Taniwha” from Shane Jones, regarding water rights, and “confiscation” from Parekura Horomia regarding the same.

      • Grassroots 1.1.3

        Totally agree, but I don’t think Shearer has it all by himself, he is the man at the front for a very small of group who are clinging on for power – remember how he got the nomination for Mt Albert after Helen left the country? He was on a UN post with a big tax free salary in US$, without an internal promise he would be mad to give up a top UN job to come back contesting for Mt Albert.

    • Olwyn 1.2

      “Unfortunately Labour will need to use terminology that we don’t like, myself included…”

      Openly pandering to prejudices so as to suck up to a mythical conception of the middle class is neither necessary nor desirable. In fact in a Labour Party leader it is disgraceful. It is false that the middle class are struggling because there are people on benefits. They are struggling for the same reason that people are on benefits, but at a higher point on the food chain: because we no longer make stuff to any extent so that little new wealth is generated and everyone who can squeezes everyone else. It is terrible that the leader of a party formed to stand with the people in their struggles instead panders to the worst instincts of the least hard hit.

      • Kiwi Steve 1.2.1

        Olwyn, I agree it’s totally undesirable but every time I hear someone who did not vote Labour this is the reply I get. You are right it is not true, but it’s the perception that matters. I’m not saying that he should go out there and say let’s scrap the benefit just to get votes because simply put, that is not us (Labour voters), and not what we want. What I was implying was that we might hear things that sound iffy but we need to just wait for the detail before burning effigies of the Party. Unfortunately there are some inoculations that the Labour party will have to do and the spin from the right is that Labour panders to the beneficiaries. From the feedback I read and hear from swig voters it’s a biggie.

        • Olwyn

          What you can do and must do is forcefully change the focus of the conversation, and look at people through the lens of their real concerns, many of which are shared concerns, rather than their carefully nurtured hatreds. And real moral conviction is often able wither petty gripes, it does not need to nurture them. I am not burning effigies of Labour just yet, but I will not be lifting a finger to help if they go into an election as “boring National” versus “wide-boy National.” Remember the disturbed man in 2008 who was laughed at by the media for ringing the police in fear when Labour lost the election? Is he likely to find the smallest skerrick of solace from this lot?

          • Kiwi Steve

            Well said. Feel free to disagree but I don’t think it’s worth hammering Labour, which I’m not implying you were doing, until the review is over and we can see how much feedback they took on board. We can change the party direction by contacting our local Labour MPs and having face time with them.

            • Pete George

              They’ve been getting plenty of feedback over the past week but don’t seem to have taken any of it on board, not noticeably, anyway.

              • Kiwi Steve

                What feedback? Seriously i’m not sure what that feeedback is. The only feedback I have heard this week is Shearer should quit and Cunliffe should lead and the advise in Matt McCarten’s article today. Most of what I have read here over the last week is that the Labour party is crap and/or National lite.

            • Colonial Viper

              We can change the party direction by contacting our local Labour MPs and having face time with them.

              More leverage than nice chats are needed now.

          • OneTrack

            “Unfortunately there are some inoculations that the Labour party will have to do and the spin from the right is that Labour panders to the beneficiaries. ”

            So, in other words, Labour does pander to beneficiaries, but whenever that comes up, we change the subject. Ok, I’m with you now.

            • Colonial Viper

              Every person in NZ deserves enough to live on with respect and dignity, because we are a rich and generous enough country to do that.

              And everyone who wants a full time job should get one, and be expected to perform it to a good standard.

    • Draco T Bastard 1.3

      We on the left often point the finger at the top but sometimes we need to realise that there are issues at the bottom.

      Nobody disputes that there is but the more expensive fraud happens at the top. In fact, the systems in place for catching beneficiary fraud are probably all that are needed and putting in place more will just be throwing money away.

      As National have shown, what you say prior to the election is not always what you do in parliament.

      Lying in politics needs to be stopped, not applauded.

      • Kiwi Steve 1.3.1

        Very true, the shadow economy is an injustice. Also true about the systems currently being in place working. I remember an article on the herald awhile back saying that most benefit fraud is actually done by WINZ staff and the total benefit fraud is something like 0.10%.

        Also very true, the game is getting worse not better. Unfortunately the best liar seems to win these days.

        • bad12

          Aha, I havn’t got the link but the figures for detected fraud are about where you put them, that fraud as you rightly point out also includes the frauds committed by WINZ staff,

          The figures i have seen for tax fraud (sorry no link), amount to 5% of the total tax collected, so in terms of actual monies misappropriated it’s easy to see which section of society are the real thieves,

          Should we take moves to clarify the grey area between ‘avoiding’ and ‘evading’ in our tax laws where both become a criminal offense while coupling such tax offending to the same seizure of assets and property we now apply to the gains from criminal enterprise we will find that given a strengthened collection regime,(rehiring all those IRD staff sacked by National in a huge ugly purge), we would not as a country be borrowing to the tune of 300 million dollars a year…

          • bad12

            Heres a link that goes some way to quantifying the scale of tax dodging in New Zealand, the estimated 7 billion dollars here is from the avoidance of tax and says nothing that addresses the huge amount of tax that is ‘avoided’ by legal businesses via ‘smart Lawyers and Accountants,


            • Kiwi Steve

              Thanks. The link didn’t work for me, but I did find the article on stuff and it makes me sick. Think of how we could improve the lives of children in poverty with that kind of money.

              • bad12

                Yeah, thats just the estimate from the more ‘black-market’ type fraud of doing stuff ‘under the table”,

                Slippery the Prime Minister would know all about the even bigger problem of ‘avoidance’, finding legal means to avoid paying the due taxes, and, it aint being addressed because its the means by which the ‘thieves’ up in Slippery’s tier of society manage to legally not pay taxes amounting to the same if not more than the amount lost through the black market type tax evasion,

                When we consider the approx: 14 billion dollars of tax that isn’t paid it’s easy to see where Socialism has gone, it’s been stolen by the Tories,

                PS, yeah a lot of my links fail, i usually put up the Google as well just in case,best i remember to stick to doing that…

                • Draco T Bastard

                  The link failed because of the ellipses in it. Did you copy it from Twitter or something? I believe this is the one you want.

                  • bad12

                    Larfffs, what’s the ellipses, sounds a bit like a Slippery lithp when He is under pressure,

                    Nah i have yet to join the mass of Twits i copied it straight from the web, best i keep on adding the Google with my links ae…

          • Pete George

            Should we take moves to clarify the grey area between ‘avoiding’ and ‘evading’ in our tax laws
            Starting under Labour and continued and expanded under National IRD are doing this and have actively taken measures to reduce both avoidance and evading tax.

            For example:

            IRD to target ‘hardcore’ tax avoiders

            IRD is getting more money to chase tax debt on top of the $119.3m over four years it dedicated to this in 2010.

            Revenue Minister Peter Dunne said this year’s extra money would go to funding more IRD staff to chase purposeful tax dodgers.

            “We’re not just talking about people who are behind in their payments, we’re talking about recalcitrant people who are simply not fronting up to meet their responsibility or who are deliberately seeking to avoid paying tax. It’s that hard core we’re after,” Dunne said.

            With the money it got from Budget 2010, IRD assessed an extra $86.9m of tax in the property sector and hidden in cash deals such as tips in the hospitality industry and under the table payments to seasonal workers.

            It recovered $6.62 for every dollar spent on these investigations and Dunne forecast that this year’s extra funding would help recover $345.4m by 2016.



            Tax crackdown bridges revenue loss from partial privatisation: Dunne

            The Inland Revenue Department’s clampdown on tax avoidance and loopholes will bridge the gap left by the government’s planned sell-down of its energy company holdings, according to Revenue Minister Peter Dunne.

            Measures in last month’s budget to tighten tax breaks for mixed use assets and livestock, along with giving IRD a longer leash to chase tax dodgers and a hike in petrol and tobacco excise, will net $1.73 billion over the next five years, Dunne told Parliament’s finance and expenditure committee.

            But it’s also fair to expect WINZ fraud and benefit misuse to be addressed.

            • Colonial Viper

              But it’s also fair to expect WINZ fraud and benefit misuse to be addressed.

              But big focus should remain on the big dollars – ie the big business tax cheats.

              Tax crackdown bridges revenue loss from partial privatisation: Dunne

              So Dunne finally admits that NZ is going to be losing out on revenues from selling off assets.

              • bad12

                Not only does the ‘Hairdo from Ohariu” admit the income hole being created by the asset sales sell off,

                ‘The Hair’ also admits that the plan is to plug that income hole with rack-raising of Petrol and tobacco taxes,

                Systematic theft by a bunch of Shysters…

          • KJT

            Benefit fraud was 0.1% from their own figures.
            After a lot of money was spent detecting it.
            Most was actually by a few staff, not clients. The huge sum of 16 million.

            As against 350 million expected to be recovered from the tax fraudsters they catch this year.

            Known tax fraud more than 5%. Several billions.

            Half of the wealthiest people in NZ pay NO tax in NZ. More billions.

            Not to mention all the “legal” tax dodges. Trusts, transfer pricing, income minimisation and Including the unaffordable tax cuts that we are borrowing more than a billion a year to cover. A lot more billions.

            It is obvious where the serious gap in the accounts lies.

            And who is avoiding paying for what they take from society.

            Not welfare recipients, most of whom are on welfare for an average of less than two years, and pay PAYE for the rest of their lives.

            • bad12

              Good figures and aint the figures we are laying out here EXACTLY what Labour Leader David Shearer should be hammering with every speech He makes,

              Instead of spitting on individual Bene’s Shearer need lay out a platform of tax reform where avoidance is as criminal as evasion and both should not result in jail time which is simply more of a waste of money,

              Both avoidance and evasion of taxes should simply result in the seizure of ALL the assets of the perpetrators…

    • Dr Terry 1.4

      “Hope lies eternal in the human breast”. Must politics necessarily be a dirty business? If you allow that, then that is what you will get. Hardly a surprise, though, that Shearer had nothing to say. Most of the time he seems to say nothing! But, of course, as we hear continuously, give him yet more time and he will sprout wings.

      Concerning the Dear Leader, he will have all of a thousand opportunities to “make sacrifices”” for his son. He had only ONE opportunity to sacrifice his time to honour dead soldiers whom he himself, in effect, actually led to the slaughter.

  2. Jenny 2

    Two bland leaders = few comments

  3. fatty 3

    There’s a big difference between ‘gotcha’ political point scoring, and being vocal with a well reasoned argument. John Key’s baseball cheer-leading did not warrant a response from an oppositional leader, however, its time he made clear his opposition to Key’s policies. Its time he shaped Labour as a ‘rival tribe’.
    Look at the state of our society, we don’t need a gentle approach.

  4. Blue 4

    I can’t comprehend Key’s argument with regard to missing the funerals of the soldiers.

    From what I can see, his son is playing in four pool matches, the first of which is on Monday at 6:30am NZ time.

    The funeral for the soldiers was 1pm on Saturday NZ time.

    It’s about 20 hours give or take, flight time between NZ and Maine, USA where the tournament is being held.

    Even if he missed the first game, he could still be there for the three other games, the second of which is on Tuesday morning 2am NZ time.

    I don’t get it. Is missing one game and being there for the others really such a big deal that Key had to miss the funerals of the two servicemen?

    • Key missed the memorial service. The families are having private funerals.

    • rosy 4.2

      Yep, and his 17 year-old son would (or should) be mature enough to understand this compromise would be the right thing to do.

      • seeker 4.2.1

        +1 well said rosy.In fact I don’t think he gave his son a very good message as a father in a responsible position or a pm in a responsible position, to put a baseball game, no matter how important, ahead of two men who have just lost their lives for their country.

    • Carol 4.3

      I wonder which US university Max Key will eventually enroll in?

  5. captain hook 5

    David Shearer: Vampire Hunter!
    Get ‘im Dave.

  6. Trying to talk up a bit opportunistic criticism of Key by left whingers on passing issues compared to a barrage of frustration, despair and anger from Labouir supporters and ex supporters over the actions of Labour leadership and MPs, and their subsequent inaction and lack of acknowledgement of deepeseated problems, is quaintly loyal.

    Key’s week of horrids will be mostly forgotten by next week.

    If Shearer and Labour keep pretending nothing is wrong the wrath of their own will only get worse.

  7. captain hook 7

    did yu make that up pete or have you been reading old star trek scripts you bought off the web?

  8. Barry 8

    It has got to the point where memorials for dead soldiers are becoming more commonplace. A few deaths ago there was no question. Key would do anything to be there.

    Now it is not such a big thing, so that Key can risk being somewhere else.

    • fatty 8.1

      or maybe cause we just had an election…if this memorial was on a year or less before an election you can be sure Key would be there in the front row. He has nothing to gain from being there.

  9. captain hook 9

    Las Vegas?

  10. bad12 10

    Slavish Shearer and Slippery Key both contestants for the same position in society,

    *Firstly to keep the rich firmly enriched,

    *Second to keep the comfortable middle class ensconced in the realms of comfort,

    Shearer cannot give New Zealand a strong ‘vision’ either in bits or as a whole because He simply aint got one, a vision that is, and should Shearer be forced at any stage to give that ‘vision’ He will simply come across as a carbon copy clone of Slippery the present Prime Minister suffering the after effects of one too many 70’s acid trips,

    We all have to face it people Labour under Shearer means as opposition, what we are getting now is the sum total of it, opposition that is,

    And, what we will get from a Shearer lead Government is NOTHING, for those not in the comfortable middle class there is NOTHING to be gained by voting for Labour as it’s becoming more obvious that except for His Nelson speech to the Pipfruit Growers where He sees the answer as grow more apples and get smart with them there is no vision,

    It’s interesting to see that the Republicans in the US have adopted as their slogan ‘Strengthening the Middle Class’

    Here both Labour and National are fighting over that very ideal…

    • Draco T Bastard 10.1

      …suffering the after effects of one too many 70′s acid trips,

      Na, you’re wrong there. If he was suffering Acid Trip Flashback he’d probably have some vision.

      Here both Labour and National are fighting over that very ideal…

      And ignoring the lowest income 75% that aren’t part of that middle class.

      • bad12 10.1.1

        Lolz, ”the depressive lulls between the peaks suffered from having one too many 70’s acid trips perhaps,

        Think you will find that such a middle class extends to the 49% at the higher end of the economic scale,

        The ones the Slippery National Government provided meaningful tax cuts to and the Clark Labour Government extended the Working For Families Tax Credit to also,

        Within that 2-5% of the electorate there is a little ‘swing vote’ that are in fact the ‘target’ of both National and Labour hence both pander to them in effect buying their votes…

    • Murray Olsen 10.2

      Shearer has absolutely no vision and isn’t even a game changer. He’s a nothing. The role of people like him in politics should be confined to fund raising and door knocking on behalf of people who atcually have a vision and want to make the deep and fundamental changes that most of our society needs to survive.
      Bugger waiting for them to work out policy when they can’t even make any strong criticisms of the worst and most incompetent pack of fools we’ve had as a government in my memory. All we seem to get are stupid schoolboy attacks from Mallard, and even them he lets Banks (not the sharpest tool in the shed) outwit him.
      Go Mana and go Greens!! All I can hope is that these two parties, and maybe Winston First, get enough seats that they don’t have to invite Labour into a coalition. Am I dreaming? Probably, but we’re all living a bloody nightmare anyway, so why not dream a little?

  11. The election may be some time away,however there are serious policies that should be
    challenged in parliament and yet are not.
    The clark era is still in labour with the inner circle still picking its people without regard
    for what is right for the country and labour followers, this kind of strangulation of
    process needs to stop.
    Shearer needs to bring back cunliffe,get rid of parker,he needs to have a reshuffle
    and look at how he is doing things,sack his advisors,ramp up the connection with
    the wider public,get rid of the old clark team as well,fresh start is what is needed.
    If all of this doesn’t happen then labour will be looking at mid 20’s in the next election.

    • BillORees 11.1


    • Starlight – I pretty much agree with everything you say.

      If all of this doesn’t happen then labour will be looking at mid 20′s in the next election.

      That’s not far off where they were last election. They may be flattered not because of themselves but because of voter resistance to giving too much vote to Greens or NZF.

      A 25+15+10 Lab/Gr/NZF mix isn’t out of then question. Not sure how Labour would manage with half the say in a coalition. It could also be complicated by Maori, Mana or UF (or any mix) making up the numbers.

  12. seeker 12

    .”He then compounded his woes with a controversial decision to attend his son’s baseball game rather than the funerals of the dead soldiers.”

    Thank you Anthony for this post .I had been wondering how to introduce the following link without bursting a blood vessel :

    What an unbecoming photo op! I have no respect at all now for Key who appears to disrespect New Zealand in evermore churlish ways.

    I thought his ‘throat slitting’ gesture was low enough – but to disrespect two young dead soldiers, and their families, when they have made the ultimate sacrifice and given their lives in service for their country, at his (Key’s) own behest as Commander in Chief of our forces, is the lowest of the low. Lance Corporals Pralli Durrer and Rory Malone, both 26 years young, did not fail in their duty but Key did in his by not being at their state memorial and ‘homecoming’ to recognise and salute their ultimate sacrifice.

    I am beginning to think of him in an American term now, seeing as how he appears to love that place so much he even changes our laws for them, and the term is .’.white trash’ which I have amended to ‘white business trash’. Oh the banality of evil, as it slowly erodes our standards of ethics……..

    David Shearer made the best comment on John Key’s unpriministerial decision by refusing to comment on it. His silence on the matter spoke volumes.


    • Joe Bloggs 12.1

      John Key is not the Commander-In-Chief of the NZ Defence Force – that role is held by the Governor-General Sir Jerry Mataparae, who attended the memorial service for the two fallen soldiers. The funerals were private family services and were held separately to the memorial service.

      • Colonial Viper 12.1.1

        So Key was in the country when the Memorial Service was held? Why did he miss it?

        • Anne

          Because they were only Lance corporals?

        • little sparrow

          Actually he wasn’t in the country when the memorial service was held on Saturday, and the funerals are this week.

          Anne a disgraceful comment, ‘only lance corporals’, that implies a contempt for a lower rank by yourself, and in anticipation of you saying that is not what you think, but what the PM thinks I will say that it can’t be that as he has attended the funeral of a private, (just in case you don’t realise a private is lower than a lance corporal), so if he really was missing the memorial based on rank he wouldn’t have attended the funeral of other lower ranked personnel.

          Seeker said “Lance Corporals Pralli Durrer and Rory Malone, both 26 years young, did not fail in their duty but Key did in his by not being at their state memorial and ‘homecoming’ to recognise and salute their ultimate sacrifice.” Seeker, do you realise that these two soldiers had a military memorial, not a state memorial? That following on from your idea that John Key is the Commander in Chief of our forces does make your ignorance rather clear for all to see, and diminishes any credibility you may have had. I recommend you ensure your facts are correct so you don’t appear ignorant and uninformed in future.

          On this matter of Key missing the memorial service, I just want to make the following points:

          1. John Key visited the families before-hand, so they would have been aware of his position, and I would imagine that they, like many people in this country, would respect him for wanting to spend time supporting his son, as these deaths show us that time is precious and you never know when you may lose your loved one, so every moment with them should be cherished.

          2. John Key would have been there as a representative of the Government, the acting PM and Minister of Defence both attended as representatives of the Government.

          3. As Joe Bloggs said Key is not the Commander in Chief of the NZDF, actually technically the Commander in Chief is Her Majesty the Queen, who did not attend, but was represented by the Governor General. (Hmmmm…. maybe we should villify her for not attending the memorial and sending a representative)

          This ‘story’ that has come about from anti Key and anti National media and commentators comes across as desperation on the part of the Left to deflect the attention from what is a lacklustre showing by the leader of the Opposition.

          • Colonial Viper

            Actually he wasn’t in the country when the memorial service was held on Saturday, and the funerals are this week.

            Key is a fucking disgrace to this country. First he let Pike River families down, then he let the NZDF down. Sense a trend here?

            You have all the talking points down pat. But how do you know he was overseas? Where was he? Link please.

            His son’s baseball game was not for 3 days after the service. Where did he spend his time doing in the meantime?

          • Anne

            Anne a disgraceful comment, ‘only lance corporals’, that implies a contempt for a lower rank by yourself,


            Key weighed up the potential political gain if he was to re-arrange his schedule so that he could attend the memorial service, or whether he could get away with keeping to his original schedule. He chose the latter…

            And that is what many people find disgraceful.

      • Tiger Mountain 12.1.2

        Tell someone who cares Bloggs, the Key administration has had ample opportunity to withdraw from Afghanistan but have chosen to toady to the yanks rather than re-establish NZ‘s hard won international reputation as a peacekeeper and semi neutral nation.

        I suspect a number of kiwis and defence professionals (keyboard sabre rattlers excepted) will quietly note ShonKey‘s no show and just privately downgrade him.

        • Anne

          I suspect a number of kiwis and defence professionals (keyboard sabre rattlers excepted) will quietly note ShonKey‘s no show and just privately downgrade him.


      • seeker 12.1.3

        Apologies Joe Bloggs. But I still remember the news video from tvnz or 3 , when John key went to Bamyan, where I watched him speak to our forces in a hut /unit and asked them to stay on longer than the following March and later it was said that theyhad asked to. The video clip was pulled I think as I have never been able to find it since and I did not record it ( as I often do with the news, since the concerted efforts of the msm, and nacts from late 2007 and the John McCain interview onwards, to malign, imo, Winston Peters.) And key is still the leader of our country,unfortunately.

        • Jim Nald

          hi seeker

          is this the clip that has the stuff you were referring to?

          the only thing i can remember from key’s visit was the thought that duncan had changed into guyon’s clothes 🙂

          • seeker

            Thanks Jim
            Did a double take with Guyon/Duncan dressed in in the same shirt! But that was the hut I saw, and where I heard key say to the service men that he would like them to stay on, so I reckon it must have been Duncan’s report as that was where it was stated that 50 or so would stay on after 2011,about 2 mins in. Didn’t key sound articulate and informed? What happened?

            Great that you posted this link -I knew I hadn’t dreamed it as I was a bit taken aback at the time, because key asked them as if he was suggesting they might like to stay on a bit longer in a holiday camp! So weird.

            (Now if only you could find the video clip of key’s security men clearing the table in Epsom, so that we can all see, as I did, them clearing everything except that poor hapless photographer’s bag. Think it was on tv3 or Campbell Live. Big thanks once again.)

    • BM 12.2

      From a soldier in Afghanistan replying to some cock head who was trying to politicise the death of these two soldiers and score score points against John Key.

      lol, it’s called the internet, you can buy stuff from anywhere, it did take a while for me to persuade the wife to let me buy it. If you really want to know, I was one of the bearer party that carried our boys onto the C130 at Bagram on Monday. If you served, and I really really doubt that you have, you should be ashamed. Reading most of your posts you have no idea about military tactics and what is possible in this theatre of operations. To start with, there were AH64 providing overwatch, B1, F16 and A10 were also on station very quickly after the contact was initiated with NDS. NZLAV only just fit on the roads in the Shakiri Valley, let alone an Abrams. Every soldier I have spoken too over here has said that the Prime Minister is doing the right thing by going to watch his son, and we appreciate all the best wishes from home, from everyone. What is starting to piss alot of us off is the armchair experts second guessing everything and blaming people for a decision that the soldiers made. We choose to be here, the guys chose to come to the defence of our NDS partners, and finally….some of our guys chose to go to the aid of wounded Kiwi soldiers placing themselves in the line of fire and paying the ultimate price. It’s idiots like you joe172 that need to sit down, take a deep breath and grow the fuck up (sorry for the swearing).


      utu4 (45 ) 11:25 pm, Fri 10 Aug #346

      • Tiger Mountain 12.2.1

        Willingly supporting the Afghani narco-theocracy on behalf of the yanks decade old lost cause is certainly deserving of some sort of award.

        • BM

          What are you implying?

        • bad12

          True,we don’t yet have the brass hypo-needle, crossed of course, complete with massed dollar baggies, perhaps the number of baggies could be raised lowered to indicate the level of bravery in the service of keeping Khazai as the Prez of the unified Afghanistan Heroin Dealers Association…

          • BM

            That’s about what I thought, you couldn’t give a fuck about these soldiers and if anything actually despise them for what they are doing.

            The death of these two men is nothing more than an opportunity to try and score points against National, fucking disgraceful.

            • bad12

              Back to TM then is it deary???

              PS, the last 3 words of your ;little rant,a perfect descriptive of National’s policy on Afghanistan and as a general description of the National Party…

              • BM

                What a total fucking wanker you are.

                • bad12

                  Yes i agree, not only a wanker but a prick and a real bastard to boot, thank you for your help in extolling my virtuous nature to the other Standard readers,

                  Be a good little dear now and slide off back down the same sewer-hole you arrived by…

                  • DJ

                    What a bunch of fucking cock suckers.

                    If you have balls just a fraction of the sizes of your mouths, then please leave your names and addresses below so we can pass them on to our returning servicemen next year.

                    Let’s see what their opinions of you are then.

                    • bad12

                      Wow your soooooo tough, i am swooning already….

                    • Kotahi Tāne Huna

                      @”DJ”: sure thing. Right after you publish your full name and address. Or are you a snivelling hypocrite?

                    • What about you Kotahi Tāne Huna? You act the tough guy here, parading your Maori moniker. Would you publish your name and address? Surely you’re not a snivelling hypocrite.

                      Edit – I was wrong, snivelling hypocrite to follow:

                    • Kotahi Tāne Huna

                      I don’t recall asking you a damn thing, 167 🙄
                      Do you get it? Your opinion means less than nothing to me.

                    • bad12

                      pg=POS 🙄 …

                    • You weren’t asked to show your hypocrisy but you chose to jump in to someone else’s thread acting the tough guy. Asking someone to ID themselves. Under a concocted name. Sure thing.

                      bad12 seems to be acting their age. Anouther ‘tough’ hypocrite.

                    • Kotahi Tāne Huna

                      I’d like to apologise to everyone for feeding this bland wretch.

                    • pukeko

                      Māu e tuku atu aku kupu hauarea nei hai tirohanga iho mā aku hoa.

                    • DJ

                      @ bad12, yeh thought so. All mouth no balls. But then again, mentioning both of those in one sentence probably got you a little excited ………

                • Tiger Mountain

                  And you link to the scabrous Trade Me BM…. I rest my case about keyboard sabre rattlers.

            • locus

              @ BM and other vein popping militarists

              Every soldier I have spoken too over here has said that the Prime Minister is doing the right thing by going to watch his son

              Soldiers are drawn from society and generally have views that reflect it. NZ is divided on whether the PM served us well as ‘head of state’ in this regard. I am sure that kiwi soldiers are equally divided on this issue.

              That’s about what I thought, you couldn’t give a fuck about these soldiers and if anything actually despise them for what they are doing.

              To most people (not in the army), a wearer of an army uniform represents the nation’s military policy. Soldiers should not expect the general population to judge war as right just because they are decent caring people under their uniforms.

              The death of these two men is nothing more than an opportunity to try and score points against National, fucking disgraceful.

              The majority (including pacifists) who respect these soldiers’ individual sacrifices would also respect a head of state who put his duty ahead of his excuse to go visit US – oops his paternal duty to attend his 17 year old son’s baseball game.

              Strangely… the first of this series of baseball games was on the Monday – after the state funeral.

              • little sparrow

                A couple of corrections Locus.

                1. It was a military memorial not a state funeral – there is a difference

                2. John Key is not our head of state, he is the leader of our country, our head of state is the Queen who is represented by the Governor General (who was in attendance at the military memorial service).

                I realise I will now be heavily censured by one and all as a pedant, however, I find getting fundamental facts wrong actually decreases credibility, and therefore renders a comment invalid, so I find you lack credibility and your comment is invalid.

      • seeker 12.2.2

        @ BM

        I am a mother giving my opinion on the leader of our country and what I see as his failure in his duty to honour our dead and using his position as a parent as an excuse. In fact I would have thought that being a parent would have made him more sensitive to the situation, but no. It is nothing to do with politics, it is my opiinion of the measure of a man who happens to lead this country. He is very flawed. As I showed in my comment, my opinion of him has sunk further and further over the last four years and I would not want my son to fight for him or New Zealand, if that’s who he represents.
        Good on our soldiers who do not have such a jaundiced view as me, nor can they afford to as they carry on their courageous work in Afghanistan, so I will be quiet now, and ask God to keep them safe.

        • idlegus

          +1 couldnt put it better myself.

        • little sparrow

          Interesting that you think as a parent John Key should be more sensitive to attending a memorial service for two soldiers, where I think that the deaths of the two soldiers shows how little time we have with those we love, and that it should make him as a parent keep a promise made to his son and want to spend more time with his family, that he, and they can cherish.

          How would your children feel if you were in John Key’s position, where you put attending a memorial service for someone you don’t know above that of keeping a promise to watch them represent New Zealand? They might understand, but I bet they would resent you for it, and probably be very hurt you chose duty over family. Sometimes family must come before duty, everyone knows this, and I would think those that truly cherish their families, and cherish the family unit would appreciate this and understand. The fact you state you are a mother, but still believe a parent should put duty above his child astounds me.

          • Blue

            Key’s son is playing in four games. One, two, three, four. There is not just one game, there are four. Do you compute?

            He could have attended the memorial service as the PM of NZ, and watched his son play baseball.

            There is no either/or choice.

            • Colonial Viper

              Except Key had business meetings with banksters and hedge fund investors over the sale of NZ assets.

      • Puddleglum 12.2.3

        “From a soldier in Afghanistan replying to some cock head who was trying to politicise the death of these two soldiers and score score points against John Key.

        BM, I’m sure you realise that every death of every soldier in war is a political event. War is politics by other means. That these men chose to go there (and utu4 says they did) itself represents a politicised act by them (how could it not be?). That the person you quote says,

        Every soldier I have spoken too over here has said that the Prime Minister is doing the right thing by going to watch his son” 

        … shows politicisation of these deaths by the soldiers themselves.

        It is impossible to ‘politicise’ the deaths of soldiers because of the simple fact that those deaths are always already political. What else could they be, since a national army fights wars that result from a political decision?

        Of course we should be saddened by their deaths and respect the grieving of their families. That is a given.

        But consider this: When it comes to the Afghanistan deployment, are people who, in the aftermath of these deaths, talk about our soldiers bringing peace and aid to Afghanistan and ordinary Afghanis also ‘politicising’ their deaths? (i.e., trying to score political points)

        If not, why not (since there is considerable political debate around the globe and within New Zealand about whether or not the western deployment in Afghanistan is, indeed, doing good things for Afghanistan)?

  13. just saying 13

    It’s a sad difference between the left and right, and I know it has a lot to do with power differentials, but can anyone imagine Kiwiblog expressing pride or satisfaction, if, say, John Minto said something approving about John Key?

    • OneTrack 13.1

      I can’t imagine it. That’s possibly because I can’t imagine John Minto saying anything approving about anybody who was politically to the right of Kim Jong-il.

  14. Two reasons have been suggested for Labour’s bad media and invisible MPs:

    Just when Labour get a bit of momentum Mallard’s ego gets in the way. (edited paragraph)

    Fran Mold’s media strategy has been a total disaster. She stops MPs getting press about policy, so they get smacked up for not doing any work. Apparently she has all the charm of Heather Simpson badly hungover and having a bad day.

    I’m sure there’s more to it than that.

  15. Kiwi Steve 15

    Question: The media are talking about a Labour elected government forming a coalition with the Greens, what if it was the other way around? Should a Green elected government make a deal with Labour?

    • That’s a very good question. Greens have a much different culture and different principles to Labour, and have proven they will stay out of coalition rather than accept certain compromises.

      • fatty 15.1.1

        True, Labour has even formed a coalition with United Future…and we all know United Future are immoral leeches

      • Tracey 15.1.2

        And who knows better than you how party’s sell their souls for the baubles… Playing leapfrog with their principles from election to election.

    • Fortran 15.2

      Kiwi Steve

      Are you able to confirm that secret top level meetings have and are continuing between the Greens and National on some common grounds ?

    • OneTrack 15.3

      The question is not, should they. The question is would they. The answer is yes.

  16. captain hook 16

    I wouldn’t believe anything I read on Trade Me.

    • bad12 16.1

      You probably have that right, i doubt if any of the Kiwis serving in Afghanistan are stupid enough to get on TradeMe and start detailing what type and number of air support is available to the soldiers there let alone publicly detail any info that may compromise the command structure between the various units operating in any given area,

      It’s that usual play for gravitas in an attempt to gain the upper hand in a debate that goes on over there quite often,

      You know the same sort of stuff, I was a Labour voter but now i am voting National, its all low browed stuff without the provision of any proof,

      plus i thought they flew our boys out of Bagram on Tuesday….

      • BM 16.1.1

        Read the thread you fucking dumbarse before you make an even bigger dick of yourself.
        Here’s another post from that thread

        Joe172 utu4 is my son and if you don’t believe he’s over there that is your prerogative.but I can assure you he is and every day I worry about him.


        thistle4 (462 ) 8:18 am, Sat 11 Aug #357

        That lady thistle4 is a well liked regular on that message board.

        • bad12

          Yawn, why havn’t you disappeared back to the TM sewer from whence you came, you reproduction of a post off of that web-site is meaningless, proof does not come via comments of people who say it is because i said it,

          Whether or not the piece of s**t you quote has a son in that war is really immaterial as their is no provision of any proof it simply makes you an even bigger piece of s**t by dragging such rubbish onto the standard,

          Be a good girl now and sod off won’t you…

          • BM

            That’s a disgraceful comment.
            I dropped lprent an email and let him know, hopefully retribution is swift.

            • Pete George

              I agree that it’s a disgraceful comment, but don’t hold your hopes up for this being addressed by moderation here, it works different here to TM, there’s no neutral response system for reported abuse here and speaking up about abuse more often than not simply attracts more abuse.

              But most readers will see abuse and abusers for what they are, they just tend to keep quiet for obvious reasons.

              • Murray Olsen

                Yes Pete, the silent majority supports everything you say.

                • I didn’t say that Murray. I know some usually silent readers don’t like me, they’ve popped up and said it.

                  But I’ve heard more say that the levels of abuse allowed here discredit the abusers and substantially discredit what some claim to be the flagship blog of the left. That’s quite sad.

                  • Murray Olsen

                    Most blogs that I have ever looked at become exclusive clubs, which is quite sad. On the level of abuse though, I’d say that WhaleSpew is much worse than here. His Whale Army need to grow up and realise that thinking free speech is a good thing doesn’t actually mean they need to incessantly air their fantasies of prison rape. Bradbury’s blog doesn’t seem to have much abuse on it, but then I don’t bother with it since I realised his hatred of baby boomers rules out any hope of decent analysis.
                    Cactus Kate seems to spend all her time trying to prove that even though she’s as ugly and vacuous as Ayn Rand, she still has a sex life. Bowalley Rd is as irrelevant to anything as the guy who writes it. Roger Brooking and Frank M. have a reasonable standard in their respective blogs, without much abuse.
                    I’ve never looked at yours, so I can’t comment.

                    • On the level of abuse though, I’d say that WhaleSpew is much worse than here.

                      Maybe it depends what side of the abuse you are on Murray. It can be bad at times there but I’ve seen worse sustained abuse here, quite a bit more.

                      Neither are a good look for either side at times though.

                      You can’t tell me the flagship of the left is proud of the likes of bad11?

                    • OneTrack

                      Murray, I can’t say I have ever seen anything like this thread on WhaleOil

                  • bad12

                    I don’t bother to directly reply to you PG because having read everything you post on the Standard my belief is that your simply here to either advertise your own little read blog or to make mischief trying to ignite various posts to either destroy that posts intent or drag it far off of the topic intended,

                    Such behavior or more to the point lack of it by you simply makes you in my opinion a POS only worth a smiley face in reply,

                    However, seeing as you have also chosen to go Wah Wah Wah about abuse in this post i recommend that you educate yourself to who entered the thread mouthing out-right abuse and addressing various commenter’s with abusive epithets,

                    You will find that in fact it was BM at 4.22 this afternoon who deliberately arouses the wrath of commentors with His original abusive rant,

                    Enjoy the reply because i don’t see myself having a need to address you further while You attempt to make the standard all about You, except of course for the usual ^ 🙄 ^…

                    • seeker

                      Well said bad 12. At 4.22pm BM wrote ,
                      “From a soldier in Afghanistan replying to some c… h….d ..”..
                      which totally sickened and offended me. There was no excuse for this language and i can only think that BM stands for Beastly Manners

              • bad12

                ( 🙄 ) F off Turd…

              • BM

                Yeah, I can see why Labour HQ despises this place.
                Talk about shitting in the nest.

                • bad12

                  No one need to s**t in your nest, in your case such s**t is of genetic origins,

                  In other words it’s all in your mind s**t-head…

            • bad12

              A foul bad mouth going Wah Wah Wah about being foully bad mouthed, now that’s really funny,

              Sortta makes you today’s Crusty the Clown…

            • gobsmacked


              Instead of more playground abuse, let’s address the core issue.

              Do you think NZ troops should leave Afghanistan? If so, why? If not, why not?

              (My answer is “Yes – because they are dying for nothing.” Yours?)

            • Draco T Bastard

              That’s a disgraceful comment.

              Pointing out that you have supplied no proof to back up your claims is disgraceful?

              The army saying that there was an AH64 supplying oversight would be considered proof, not an anonymous someone on a public forum.

              • ropata

                This thread is bloody scary.
                Is the army becoming an extension of the national party?
                Is it unpatriotic to criticise the PM?


                • Colonial Viper

                  If you are in the defence forces, you make no political comments in public. Just like if you are in the public service.

  17. captain hook 17

    I think bm just had a mental bm.
    you know.
    bowel motion.

  18. Jimmie 18

    Perhaps the simplest way to get rid of has been MPs who don’t want to retire is to pressure the party hierarchy to place them near the bottom of the list.

    And to stop them winning an electorate either choose an alternative labour candidate or request labour voters to give their electorate vote to someone else like the greens.

    Might sound a little harsh however 28% I would have thought called for drastic measures.

    • Murray Olsen 18.1

      The MPs who don’t want to retire are probably part of the party hierarchy or owed too many favours by it. To my mind, expecting the problems to be cured from within is like expecting a viral disease to cure itself.

  19. handle 19

    Performance art. Is this name-calling meant to illustrate what is going on inside the Labour party? Imagine all that effort put into reasoned discussion instead.

  20. Ross 20

    Key lied to the public and, I suspect, to the families of the slain soldiers when he said he was going to disappoint someone. He suggested that he had little choice but to attend his son’s baseball.

    The fact is that he could’ve attended both events. He had ample time to travel to the US after the memorial service and see each of his son’s matches. Not only has he failed to perform his duty, he has cowardly and without excuse misled the public.

    • bad12 20.1

      Probably worse from Slippery the Prime Minister was the insinuation He made about the Hungarian troops serving next to the Kiwis in Afghanistan of them being cowardly in their duty,

      As we have seen in the comments in this post, there are some that become irrational at any time ‘their’ soldiers service is in the slightest way questioned so we can well imagine the wrath engendered among the Hungarian population upon hearing our Prime Minister sniggeringly refer to ‘their’ soldiers in such a fashion…

  21. xtasy 21

    WHATEVER your position on Shearer’ speech, truth is, it was largely more of the same lingo, not presenting much in the way of policies, a real plan, and anything of substance.

    What made me furious was his early reference to that anecdotal “sickness beneficiary” an electorate member pointed out to him (so it is said), and that it was “not fair” that person could paint his roof, but was supported with income by the community (tax payers).

    Now I am waiting still now, for that story to be verified, to be proved the person that painted the roof is or was a sickness beneficiary, and has a condition that should prove he should not be physically able to do what he did!

    I got no word, no proof, no comment, nor has the often so ill informed media. So what is this all about? It appears to be an invented story line that Shearer uses to get appeal with the redneck element of society. That is “unbecoming” of ANY Labour politician who would and should apply fairness and objectivity.

    Now, comparing Shearer with Key is totally idiotic and irrelevant, because we have two totally different scenarios. Key told the media front up, I am going to watch my son do whoopdy dooda, play baseball, or whatever. I think it was a bit “off” in view of the two dead soldiers coming back, but I had no big issue with Key, as he does what he wants anyway, fair enough, especially if it is family.

    Shearer did something very, very different! He slagged off in a poor, biased, slanderous comment right at the beginning of a speech, which was to set the tone and agenda for a new Labour campaing to win the “heartland”. Now one may forgive him for silliness or whatever, but to go on about some supposed beneficiary in his electorate in the first few lines of a major speech, not offering any PROOF to it, and then of course talking to Grey Power, who mainly will have been hard working yonkers of years ago, that is vicious, as Shearer is playing off one part of prospective Labour voters against another.

    It is so clear now, under Shearer, Labour wants to try to win more rednecks and right of centre minded voters, and forgo the left!!!

    That is what all this bloody well means, it is a right shift that Shearer has decided on, with advisors and some of his caucus, to move Labour further to the RIGHT, or perceived “centre”, which is already by media influence and National propaganda “stimulated” to think hard line and “right”.

    To me this is a declaration of WAR!

    Shearer does not want ANYTHING much to do with traditional Labour supporters and the left, he wants to create a NEW agenda for a NEW LABOUR, that is just a replacement of NATIONAL, a slightly more soft version of what we have now.

    This must send alarm bells to all, as it is a betrayal of workers’ interests, the working poor and of course people who have NO rights as it is, except begging the case manager at WINZ or their doctor, to please certify, they are too sick and unable to work.

    I have ample proof of what goes on, I have witnesses, the present welfare system is in breach of human rights, of dignity of natural justice and worse. There are legal breaches happening every day. That is why the US born and UK expert that was supposed to take over WINZ and run it left all over a sudden. Law is broken daily by MSD and WINZ!

  22. xtasy 22


    [lprent: cut’n’paste comments across threads is idiotic, a act of a sloganeering bot dumping graffiti, and any repitition will result in you getting banned from being able to leave any comments.

    Furthermore it didn’t relate to the topic of this post. So I left the copy in open mike and zapped this one. Your other off topic comments were moved to OpenMike.

    Read the policy because your behaviour on our site is becoming unacceptable and I’m not exactly a paragon of forbearance. ]

  23. Tracey 23

    The tournament is an asia-pacific team (not New Zealand) and is playing US club sides. The only thing that makes it international is us being there, and it’s not “us”, it’s asia-pacific. Any Aussies going????

    Very hard to find out anything about it actually, which is unusual for an International event.

    He was so happy to use funerals for political mileage in the past, but things have changed now??? Or is Obama gong to the games, or Rommney? (joke)

    • Colonial Viper 23.1

      he’s going mainly to talk to hedge funds and bankers to help facilitate the asset sales process.

    • Ross 23.2


      The tournament schedule is here:

      Max Key’s first match was played a few hours ago (NZT). He plays 4 matches and possibly more if his team makes it through.

      • Ross 23.2.1

        Interestingly, Max’s first match was played at 5.30pm (US time) on August 12. If Key had flown out of Christchurch on Saturday, after the memorial service, then from Auckland to Los Angeles and then onto Bangor, he would’ve arrived there at 9.02am on August 12 (US time). In other words, he could’ve gone to his hotel, had a few hours nap, and still been able to watch his son’s first match. Why did he bullshit the public – and, worse, the slain soldiers’ families – by saying he had to make a very difficult choice and was going to disappoint someone?

        Reports said he flew out Thursday night (NZT). In other words, he would’ve had to reschedule a few flights to accomodate the memorial service. Obviously that was too onerous for him.

  24. Plan B 24

    Is the whole going to see the son play more about going to secure US University place for son? Just wondering but it would be about the right time to be finalising such a place.

    • Colonial Viper 24.1

      Of course that makes sense, since Key is squeezing NZ university funding his son would be better off overseas.

    • Carol 24.2

      Oh, snap Plan B. Hadn’t seen your post and made a similar comment above a little while ago.

      I can see no other logical reason why Key would be so keen to get over there with his son at the weekend.

  25. Tracey 25

    Is he taking his bodyguards, and who is paying???? Flights, accomodation, ???

  26. captain hook 26

    I think they will just launder some money for him at his las vegas stopover.

  27. AmaKiwi 27

    I did NOT make this up!

    “Shearer happy with behaviour of the caucus”

    Felix Marwick, Newstalk ZB August 13, 2012, 12:45 pm

    “Labour’s leader is satisfied with the behaviour of his MPs.
    It follows a number of distractions for the party that went public last week including speculation about David Cunliffe’s popularity with his colleagues, and Sua William Sio’s warning that Louisa Wall’s Marriage Amendment Bill would cost Labour the next election.”

    “Labour leader David Shearer says he’s happy with the discipline of his caucus.”

    “Yes I am, we’ve had a discussion in caucus (and with) the caucus members and (it’s) behind us now.”
    Mr Shearer says they’re determined to stay focused on the issues that matter.

    • OneTrack 27.1

      Nothing to see here. Move along.

      Issues that matter. The issues that he’s going to find out what they are in November, once the consultation process has run its course?

  28. peterlepaysan 28

    Shon Key is a a Robert Muldoon/ Bob Jones crossbreed.

    Shearer is a Rowling clone.


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  • Minister James Shaw welcomes 2018 Census first release
    Statistics Minister James Shaw has welcomed the first release of 2018 Census data. The first release of data today, 23 September, includes key data on population, regional growth, the number of homes and the size of different ethnic groups in New Zealand. Data from the 2018 Census will support the ...
    3 days ago
  • Driving transparency, ethics and accountability in government use of algorithms
    Minister for Statistics James Shaw today announced a public consultation on a proposed algorithm charter for government agencies. The charter has been developed by the Government Chief Data Steward in response to growing calls for more transparency in government use of data. Computer algorithms – procedures or formulas for solving ...
    3 days ago
  • New Zealand and the Netherlands working together on climate change
    Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor, Climate Change Minister James Shaw and visiting Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte co-hosted a business roundtable in Auckland this morning focused on working together to address climate change.  “The Netherlands is an important partner for New Zealand. We share a strong agricultural history. Sustainable agribusiness and ...
    3 days ago
  • Protecting fairness for workers and businesses
    The Government is taking action to build an inclusive economy where more of us receive our fair share at work and businesses can compete on great products and services, not undercutting wages and conditions, Immigration and Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Iain Lees-Galloway says. Two consultations launched today seek feedback ...
    3 days ago
  • Indigenous Freshwater Fish Bill Passes
    The future for New Zealand’s threatened indigenous freshwater fish looks brighter with the passing of the Conservation (Indigenous Freshwater Fish) Amendment Bill in Parliament today said Minister of Conservation, Eugenie Sage. “Until now, our freshwater fish legislation has been 20 years out of date. We have lacked effective tools to ...
    3 days ago
  • Kiwis to take part in world’s biggest earthquake drill
    At 1.30pm tomorrow, hundreds of thousands of Kiwis will join about 65 million people around the globe in ShakeOut, the world’s biggest earthquake drill. The annual drill is to remind people of the right action to take during an earthquake which is to Drop, Cover, Hold, and to practise their ...
    3 days ago
  • Rising wages and low inflation supporting Kiwis
    Kiwis are benefiting from higher wage growth and low inflation under the Coalition Government. Stats NZ data out today shows the rise in the cost of living remains low, as annual Consumers Price Index (CPI) inflation fell to 1.5% in September from 1.7% in June. “The low inflation comes as ...
    3 days ago
  • NZ economy strong amid global headwinds
    New Zealand’s economic strength and resilience has been recognised in a major update on the state of the global economy. The IMF’s latest World Economic Outlook released overnight shows a reduced global growth forecast over the next two years as issues like the US-China trade war and Brexit take hold. ...
    3 days ago
  • Keeping New Zealanders safer with better counter-terrorism laws
    Justice Minister Andrew Little has today introduced a new Bill to prevent terrorism and support the de-radicalisation of New Zealanders returning from overseas. The Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders) Bill gives the New Zealand Police the ability to apply to the High Court to impose control orders on New Zealanders who ...
    3 days ago
  • Improved succession and dispute resolution core of Ture Whenua changes
    A Bill that proposes targeted changes to simplify the processes for Māori land owners when engaging with the Māori Land Court has had its First Reading today. “The approach taken by the Government is to ensure that the protection of Māori land remains a priority as we seek to improve ...
    3 days ago
  • Speech to CTU Biennial Conference
    Let me first thank all the new unionists and members in the room. There is nothing more important to improving people’s working lives than people making the decision to care, to get on board and help, to take up the reins and get involved. Congratulations to you. You bring the ...
    3 days ago
  • Minister ensures continued Whenuapai flight operations
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark has signed a certificate exempting the activity of engine testing at Whenuapai Airbase from the Resource Management Act 1991. The Act gives the Minister of Defence the power to exempt activities for the purposes of national security.  The certificate will mean the recent Environment Court ...
    4 days ago
  • NZ joins Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action
    Finance Minister Grant Robertson has announced New Zealand will join the Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action while attending APEC meetings in Chile. The objective of the 39 member Coalition is to share information and promote action to tackle climate change. It was formed in April this year, in ...
    4 days ago
  • Feedback Sought – Section 71 – Lyttelton Parking
    Feedback sought– Lyttelton commercial zone parking  The Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, Poto Williams, is seeking feedback on a proposal to remove on-site car parking requirements for new developments in the Lyttelton commercial zone.  The proposal, by Christchurch City Council, asks that powers under section 71 of the Greater ...
    4 days ago
  • Feedback Sought – Section 71 – Hagley Oval
    Hon Minister Poto Williams Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration   MEDIA STATEMENT       Tuesday 15 October 2019 Feedback sought – Hagley Oval The Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, Poto Williams, is seeking feedback on a proposal about Hagley Oval. The proposal was developed by Regenerate Christchurch ...
    4 days ago
  • CTU speech – DPM
    Ladies and gentlemen, NZCTU President Richard Wagstaff, members of respective unions – thank you for the invitation to speak to you today. This might be preaching to the choir, but the importance of trade unions in New Zealand’s historical arch is difficult to understate. And it is my belief that ...
    4 days ago
  • Police Association Annual Conference
    "Let’s start by acknowledging that it has been a huge year. " Police Association Annual Conference James Cook Grand Chancellor Hotel Wellington Nau mai, haere mai. Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, ka nui te mihi, ki a koutou katoa. President of the Police Association, Chris Cahill; Members of the Association and ...
    4 days ago
  • New Zealand announces a further P-3 deployment in support of UN sanctions
    Minister of Foreign Affairs Winston Peters and Minister of Defence Ron Mark have announced the New Zealand Government’s decision to again deploy a Royal New Zealand Air Force P-3K2 (P-3) maritime patrol aircraft to support the implementation of United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolutions imposing sanctions against North Korea. New ...
    5 days ago
  • New Zealand deeply concerned at developments in north-east Syria
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters says New Zealand continues to have serious concerns for peace and stability in north-east Syria. “Recent reports that hundreds of ISIS-affiliated families have fled from a camp are deeply concerning from a humanitarian and security perspective”, Mr Peters says. “While we acknowledge Turkey’s domestic security ...
    5 days ago
  • Government on high alert for stink bugs
    Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor is warning travelling Kiwis to be vigilant as the high-season for the crop-eating brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) is under way. “We’re on high alert to stop BMSB arriving in NZ. The high season runs until April 30 and we’ve strengthened our measures to stop stink ...
    5 days ago
  • Better protections for students in halls of residence
    The Government is moving swiftly to change the law to improve the welfare and pastoral care of students living in university halls of residence and other tertiary hostels. Cabinet has agreed to several changes, including creating a new mandatory Code of Practice that sets out the duty of pastoral care ...
    5 days ago
  • New trapping guide for community and expert trappers alike
    The Minister for Conservation Eugenie Sage has launched a new comprehensive trapping guide for community trappers to help them protect our native birds, plants and other wildlife, at Zealandia in Wellington today. ‘A practical guide to trapping’, has been developed by the Department of Conservation (DOC), and was launched during ...
    5 days ago
  • Widening Access to Contraceptives Welcomed
    Associate Health Minister Julie Anne Genter welcomes PHARMAC’s move to improve access to long-acting reversible contraception (LARCs). PHARMAC has today announced it will fund the full cost of Mirena and Jaydess for anyone seeking long term contraception, lifting previous restrictions on access to Mirena. “I welcome women having greater choices ...
    6 days ago
  • Major upgrade for Taranaki Base Hospital
    The Government has approved the next stage of a major redevelopment of Taranaki Base Hospital, which will deliver new and improved facilities for patients. Health Minister Dr David Clark has announced details of a $300 million dollar project to build a new East Wing at the New Plymouth hospital. It ...
    6 days ago
  • Extra support for rural families
    Extra funding will allow Rural Support Trusts to help farming families, says Minister for Rural Communities and Agriculture Damien O’Connor. “I know that rural families are worried about some of the challenges facing them, including the ongoing uncertainty created by the Mycoplasma bovis outbreak. “Those concerns sit alongside ongoing worries ...
    1 week ago
  • Howard Leaque Beekeeper programme graduation
    Thank you for the opportunity to be here to present certificates to the 16 graduates who have completed a beekeeping course delivered by the Howard League.  Let us start by acknowledging Auckland Prison’s Deputy Prison Director Tom Sherlock, and Acting Assistant Regional Commissioner of Corrections Northern Region Scott Walker - ...
    1 week ago
  • Finance Minister to attend APEC meetings
    Finance Minister Grant Robertson leaves this weekend to attend the APEC Finance Ministers meeting in Santiago, Chile. Discussions between APEC Finance Ministers at the meeting will include the effects of the current global economic uncertainty, risks for APEC economies and sustainable development of the region. While at APEC Grant Robertson ...
    1 week ago
  • Pacific languages are a source of strength, they ground us and build confidence
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio says for Pacific people, language can be a source of strength. It can help ground us and give us confidence. When we speak them, our languages provide us with an immediate and intimate access to our identity and our story - and ...
    1 week ago
  • Major boost to support disabled people in sport and recreation
    The Coalition Government has announced an action plan to improve the wellbeing of disabled New Zealanders by addressing inequalities in play, active recreation and sport. The initiative includes training to develop a workforce that understands the needs of children and young people with a range of impairments, advocacy for fit ...
    1 week ago
  • More prefab homes to be built as red tape cut
    The construction sector is being freed up to allow more homes to be built more quickly as the Government cuts through some of the red tape of the Building Act.  “Every New Zealander deserves a warm, dry, safe home and old inefficiencies in the Building Act make building slow and ...
    1 week ago