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Key & Banks chatted about rolling Brash?

Written By: - Date published: 8:44 pm, November 14th, 2011 - 102 comments
Categories: act, brand key, don brash, election 2011, john banks, john key - Tags: ,

The tea tape didn’t interest me at first. Nats’ reaction seemed over the top but would Key and Banks be so stupid to discuss anything sensitive in a public cafe metres from the press mob? But then Key went to the cops. This said the Nats were really worried. What’s their one asset? Brand Key. What’s his greatest weakness? His honesty/loyalty. So what could they have been discussing that would damage him?

TV3 has the tape. The cops told them not to air it.

Instead, they asked Banks some interesting questions: did he and Key discuss ‘changes’ to ACT after the election? Did he and Key talk about rolling Brash? Are there plans for a coup replace Brash with Banks?

Banks’ answers were … less than convincing. When an MP is asked if they are planning a coup on their leader, anything other than an empathetic denial is confirmation.

We’ve known for a while that Banks is unhappy with Brash. Remember the marijuana fight. Remember Banks on Close Up last week failing to endorse Brash’s leadership when directly asked to do so twice. It will have been dawning on National and Banks for some time that Joyce’s coup that replaced hide with Brash is a failure and Brash is a liability.

I don’t know what is on the tape. I haven’t heard it. No-one who has heard it has told me what was on it. I can’t tell you what is on the tape.

But there’s no law against taking an educated guess based on what we know from 3news and Banks’ behaviour. So, I’m going to take a stab in the dark: what if Key and Banks talked about their plans for rolling Brash after the election?

Let’s play out that scenario. Just for the hell of it.

Key’s mum would have called it chutzpah. Not only is Key for the second time planning a coup against Brash – shaking his hand and smiling while hiding the knife behind his back. He’s assuming that Epsom voters will do his bidding and that it is his right to make and reshape ACT as he chooses. He’s acting like it’s OK for him to assume the election is won and move on to planning a ‘restructuring’ of his ally. And, to top it all off, he had the chutzpah to talk about it in a public cafe, in front of the media, separated by a pane of glass.

Dishonest/disloyal/arrogant/secretive.

So, no wonder the Nats are in a tizzy. Brand Key is the only thing that can win them this election. It’s weakness is Key’s habit of being a lying, disingenuous son of a bitch. Audrey Young calls it his Tranzrail eyes. Others call it slippery. The voters already think he has a forked tongue.

A tape of Key talking with Banks about a secret plan to roll Brash after the election builds on people’s nascent feelings about Key. It manifests and solidifies that he’s not a trustworthy guy.

Some people see JK the smiling, easy going guy. Some see Key, the smiling snake, the con artist. It’s one or the other. Once you see him the second way, you’ll never see him the first way again. So how much damage would be done to Brand Key by this tape coming out? How many votes would be lost?

It’s illusory that this election is sown up. National could govern alone, or it could lose 4-5% and be the first one-term National government in history. Remember, National has an awful lot of soft support at the moment. Easy come, easy go.

If National’s so worried about the damage to Brand Key from the tape’s contents that it is willing to bear the damage of trying to keep it secret and the contradiction of Key pretending to be relaxed while calling in the fuzz, it’s ten times worse for ACT.

Just enough Epsom National voters might have held their nose on Key’s orders and voted Banks to get him over the line after Friday. But what if they learn that he’s secretly planning a coup against his leader? Is that the kind of character Epsomites will vote for when the alternative is that nice, harmless Goldsmith? Will Epsom voters want a bar of a party that is facing yet another coup lead by yet another outsider? Does any ACT supporter want an ACT lead by a racist, homophobic old conservative? Does the spectacle of two old men fighting over the remnants of Roger Douglas’s dream inspire anyone?

ACT is probably dead anyway. This tape is the stake through its undead heart.

Like I say, I don’t know what’s on the tape. It is just my educated guess. But it sure explains why National has hit the panic button.

102 comments on “Key & Banks chatted about rolling Brash?”

  1. I don’t reckon The DON will worry about the backstabbing from these two pathetic pip-squeaks. I sincerely hope Baldrick made the tea. Two lumps Mr Pee and Mr Wanks??

  2. Tom Gould 2

    Never mind, dutiful as ever, Guyon ran the non-denial denial, MonKey saying ‘if there was anything juicy on it, they would have published it.’ Heads he wins, tails you lose. And the cops are the enforcers. And the courageous media, the defenders of the public interest, all fold and quiver and say ‘yes John, whatever you say John’. A tale worthy of any good one party state in any good Banana republic.

    • mike 2.1

      +1

      TV1 is just sour graping it because TV3 got a copy and they didn’t. “We havn’t heard the tape, but a copy was made and given to another media outlet…”

      Yep. If any media outlet publishes this embarrasing info which is clearly in the public interest then that’s a criminal act says our dear leader.

  3. Banks and Brash are two old men who are past their use by dates and they have been allowed to take over the ACT party to make sure that Brand Key can continue with the disposal of public assets into the hands of the greedy.

    They all need to be retired as soon as possible.  Our country’s future depends on it. 

  4. mike 4

    “Some people see JK the smiling, easy going guy. Some see Key, the smiling snake, the con artist. It’s one or the other. Once you see him the second way, you’ll never see him the first way again. So how much damage would be done to Brand Key by this tape coming out? How many votes would be lost?”

    Good post. The sociopath’s mask is his greatest strength and greatest weakness at the same time. His strength because it is the thing that blinds and mesmerises his victims. His weakness because if it is ever exposed it’s all over. Therefore they will do whatever needs to be done to prevent that from happening.

  5. toad 5

    Gotta transcript, Z. Well, sort of.

  6. In case you missed my other post – here are some pics to send about.
    In particular, one about Key’s love/hate relationship with microphones.

  7. Wonder what Key and Banks are chatting about now?

    Wonder if NZ Prime Minister John Key supports ‘ONE LAW FOR ALL’ and ‘ZERO TOLERANCE FOR ‘WHITE COLLAR’ CRIME?

    Is THIS the real reason why NZ Prime Minister John Key won’t himself vote for John Banks, although John Key actually lives in Epsom?

    OPEN LETTER / REQUEST TO THE DIRECTOR OF THE SERIOUS FRAUD OFFICE, ADAM FEELEY:

    FOR THE SAME CRIMINAL CHARGES TO BE FILED AGAINST DONALD THOMAS BRASH AND JOHN ARCHIBALD BANKS AS WERE AGAINST THE FORMER FELLOW DIRECTOR OF HULJICH WEALTH MANAGEMENT PETER KARL CHRISTOPHER HULJICH:

    14 November 2011

    Adam Feeley,
    Director of the NZ Serious Fraud Office (SFO)

    Dear Mr Feeley,

    I am deeply concerned to have to request the assistance of the NZ Serious Fraud Office, in order to have the principle of ‘ONE LAW FOR ALL’ equally applied to fellow former Directors of Huljich Wealth Management (NZ) Ltd, Dr Don Brash and John Banks.

    The reason why I am requesting the assistance of the NZ Serious Fraud Office, is because, in my considered opinion, the CEO of the Finance Markets Authority, Sean Hughes, has failed to ‘do his job’.

    In my considered opinion, the CEO of the Finance Markets Authority, Sean Hughes has NOT ensured the application of the same law equally and consistently to ALL three former Directors of Huljich Wealth Management (NZ) Ltd, Dr Don Brash, John Banks and Peter Huljich, ALL of whom equally signed, for example, the Huljich Kiwisaver Scheme ‘Registered Prospectus’, dated 18 September 2009, which contained ‘untrue’ unit price performance graphs.

    This is the latest correspondence which I have received from , the CEO of the Finance Markets Authority, Sean Hughes, on this matter, in an email dated 13 November 2011:

    “Dear Ms Bright
    Thank you for your letter, which was handed in to my Auckland office on 8 November 2011.
    I have reviewed your latest correspondence carefully, noting that it does not raise any new or significantly different issues to those raised by you on 27 September 2011.

    FMA’s position is unchanged from that expressed in my email to you on 28 September 2011. I am satisfied that the position of both Mr Banks and Dr Brash was carefully considered by the Securities Commission and that competent advice was received in relation to the entities or persons against whom charges ought to be brought. Unless you have new information or evidence to bring to light which was not previously considered by the Securities Commission, FMA does not consider you have any basis on which to suggest it should bring proceedings against either Mr Banks or Dr Brash in relation to Huljich Wealth Management.

    Yours faithfully
    Sean Hughes

    –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
    Sean Hughes | Chief Executive | Financial Markets Authority
    T: + 64 4 472 9830 | E: sean.hughes@fma.govt.nz
    Level 8, Unisys House, 56 The Terrace, Wellington, New Zealand
    Level 5, Ernst & Young Building, 52-70 Galway Street, Britomart, Auckland, New Zealand
    PO Box 1179, Wellington 6140, New Zealand
    http://www.fma.govt.nz
    –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

    I hereby formally request, that in order for ‘justice to be done and be seen to be done’, and for the principle of ‘equality before the law’ to be preserved in practice, for you to please exercise ‘due diligence’ and take all necessary steps to ensure that the same charges that were laid by the Securities Commission against Huljich Wealth Management Director, Peter Karl Christopher Huljich, are equally laid against former fellow Directors Donald Thomas Brash and John Archibald Banks.

    For your information, when I asked why charges had not been laid against former fellow Directors of Huljich Wealth Management (NZ ) Limited, Donald Brash and John Archibald Banks, the CEO of the Finance Markets Authority, Sean Hughes, replied in an email dated 28 September 2011:

    “Dear Ms Bright,

    I refer to your inquiry yesterday regarding the position of Mr John Banks and Mr Donald Brash as former directors of Huljich Wealth Management.

    I understand that when this matter was initially brought to the Securities Commission’s attention, the Commission sought legal advice on whether an offence had been committed, by whom, and what charges if any should be laid.

    On 10 November 2010, the following charges were laid against Huljich Wealth Management and its director Mr Peter Huljich:

    • 2 charges under s 58, Securities Act 1978, for the distribution of a misleading prospectuses dated 22 August 2008 and 18 September 2009;

    • 6 charges under s 59, Securities Act 1978, for the distribution of misleading investment statements.

    The charges relate principally to unit price performance graphs contained in the Huljich KiwiSaver Scheme prospectuses and investment statements that portrayed the Scheme as having significantly outperformed other KiwiSaver Schemes.

    However, the Commission alleged that prospectuses and investment statements failed to disclose that the performance of the Scheme had been materially inflated by a series of related party payments, made at the direction of Mr Peter Huljich.

    I further understand there was insufficient evidence available to the Commission to prove to the requisite criminal standard that either Mr Banks or Dr Brash was involved in these related party payments.

    I am satisfied that the position of both Mr Banks and Dr Brash was carefully considered by the Securities Commission and that competent advice was received in relation to the entities against whom charges ought to be brought.

    Thank you for your interest in this matter.

    Yours faithfully
    Sean Hughes”

    I note that, for example, the Huljich Kiwisaver Scheme ‘Registered Prospectus’, dated 18 September 2009, (pg1 – APPENDIX “A”) which contained the ‘untrue’ unit price performance graphs (pg 5 – APPENDIX “B”, was signed by all three Directors (pg 42 – APPENDIX “C”)

    I also note that s. 58 (3) of the Securities Act 1978, is, in my considered opinion, very clear regarding the criminal liability for ‘misstatement’ in ‘advertisement or registered prospectus’, in that EVERY person who signed the prospectus, commits an offence:

    http://www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/1978/0103/latest/DLM29406.html?search=ts_act_Securities+Act+1978_resel&p=1#DLM29406

    58 Criminal liability for misstatement in advertisement or registered prospectus

    (3) Subject to subsection (4) of this section, where a registered prospectus that includes an untrue statement is distributed, every person who signed the prospectus, or on whose behalf the registered prospectus was signed for the purposes of section 41(1)(b) of this Act, commits an offence.

    (4) No person shall be convicted of an offence under subsection (3) of this section if the person proves either that the statement was immaterial or that he or she had reasonable grounds to believe, and did, up to the time of the distribution of the prospectus, believe that the statement was true.

    (5) Every person who commits an offence against this section is liable—

    (a) on conviction on indictment to—
    (i) imprisonment for a term not exceeding 5 years; or
    (ii) a fine not exceeding $300,000 and, if the offence is a continuing one, to a further fine not exceeding $10,000 for every day or part of a day during which the offence is continued; or

    (b) on summary conviction to—
    (i) imprisonment for a term not exceeding 3 months; or
    (ii) a fine not exceeding $300,000 and, if the offence is a continuing one, to a further fine not exceeding $10,000 for every day or part of a day during which the offence is continued.
    _____________________________________________________
    So – why were Donald Thomas Brash and John Archibald Banks, as fellow Directors of Huljich Wealth Management (NZ) Limited, who signed the same Huljich Kiwisaver Scheme ‘Registered Prospectus’, dated 18 September 2009 as Peter Karl Christopher Huljich, not equally charged, particularly given that it was in their supposedly astute business acumen, that the investing public were led to believe that they could have confidence?

    Were Donald Thomas Brash, former Leader of the National Party and John Archibald Banks, former National Government Minister (of Police and Local Government), effectively protected from prosecution because of their political connections at the highest levels?

    Because, quite frankly, in my considered opinion, that’s how it appears, particularly now that the CEO of the Finance Markets Authority, Sean Hughes, has confirmed that:

    “ (the) FMA does not consider you have any basis on which to suggest it should bring proceedings against either Mr Banks or Dr Brash in relation to Huljich Wealth Management.”

    I look forward to your confirmation, in writing, within 7 days, that the same charges that were laid against Peter Karl Christopher Huljich by the former Securities Commission will be laid against Donald Thomas Brash and John Archibald Banks, by the Serious Fraud Office.

    I have checked today, and can confirm that the Finance Markets Authority has all the former Securities Commission documents which were used to enforce the Securities Act 1978 provisions against ONE of the Huljich Wealth Management Directors – Peter Huljich.

    All I’m asking for, in the first instance, is that the same legal action is equally taken against Donald Thomas Brash and John Archibald Banks.

    The required ‘homework’ has obviously already been done, by the Securities Commission.

    In my considered opinion, there is significant and growing public interest in this matter, both nationally and internationally.

    Surely – there will not be much work required by the Serious Fraud Office to promptly lay the same charges against Donald Thomas Brash and John Archibald Banks?

    ‘ONE LAW FOR ALL’?

    Is ‘justice’ against ‘white collar crime’ going to be done and be seen to be done?

    Or not?

    Secondly, I would like the SFO to formally investigate why the CEO of the Finance Markets Authority, Sean Hughes has chosen NOT to equally apply the same ‘law’ to has NOT ensured the application of the same law equally and consistently to ALL three former Directors of Huljich Wealth Management (NZ) Ltd, Dr Don Brash, John Banks and Peter Huljich.

    Or is this a matter for the NZ Police?

    In my considered opinion, the failure of the CEO of the Finance Markets Authority, Sean Hughes to NOT to equally apply the same ‘law’ to has NOT ensured the application of the same law equally and consistently to ALL three former Directors of Huljich Wealth Management (NZ) Ltd, Dr Don Brash, John Banks and Peter Huljich, is a arguably a form of ‘corrupt practice’.

    I understand that the CEO of the Finance Markets Authority, Sean Hughes was appointed by the Finance Markets Authority Establishment Board, who were effectively National Party ‘appointees’, ‘hand-picked’ by the National Government Minister of Commerce (and Justice) Simon Power.

    Is this why the CEO of the Finance Markets Authority, Sean Hughes, has been less than vigorous, as it were, in ensuring that the same law is equally applied to the former Leader of the National Party – Don Brash, and the former National Government Minister of Police and Local Government – John Banks?

    Yours sincerely,

    Penny Bright
    Independent Candidate for Epsom.
    Campaigning against ‘white collar’ crime, corruption (and its root cause – privatisation), and ‘corporate welfare’.

    Attendee: Australian Public Sector Anti-Corruption Conference 2009
    Attendee: Transparency International’s 14th International Anti-Corruption Conference 2010

    [email deleted]

    • Good on ya Penny. See it through!
       
      I think there was some court case lately in Melbourne in which the finding set a precedent that directors of companies no longer have the room to claim ignorance/lack of expertise when they put their signature to documents.
       
      I see that Rod Petricevic is also squealing that he didn’t know.
       

    • Lanthanide 7.2

      Haven’t you been warned about copy and paste dumps on here before?

    • ropata 7.3

      Great work Ms. Bright, very interesting case to be answered, and very much in the public interest.

      • Penny Bright 7.3.1

        Thanks!

        The reason why I have published my “OPEN LETTER / REQUEST TO THE DIRECTOR OF THE SERIOUS FRAUD OFFICE, ADAM FEELEY FOR THE SAME CRIMINAL CHARGES TO BE FILED AGAINST DONALD THOMAS BRASH AND JOHN ARCHIBALD BANKS AS WERE AGAINST THE FORMER FELLOW DIRECTOR OF HULJICH WEALTH MANAGEMENT PETER KARL CHRISTOPHER HULJICH” in full, is because there has effectively been a mainstream media blackout on this story.

        Don’t you think that one or two of the voting public might be just a little bit interested in the fact that one candidate in the electorally pivotal seat of Epsom, (myself) has made formal requests to both agencies which are supposed to be at the forefront of fighting ‘white collar’ crime – the Finance Markets Authority and the Serious Fraud Office – to apply the same law equally to ALL three former Directors of Huljich Wealth Management (NZ) Ltd?

        Why didn’t the former Securities Comission , or Finance Markets Authority apply ACT’s policy of ‘ONE LAW FOR ALL’ equally to the current ACT Party Leader, Don Brash (former Leader of the National Party) and current ACT Party candidate for Epsom (former National Government Minister of POLICE and Local Government) John Banks?

        Pity ACT’s stated policy of ‘ZERO TOLERANCE FOR CRIME’ – doesn’t equally apply to the arguably yet-to-be convicted white collar criminals who are leading the ACT Party?

        Don Brash and John Banks can’t have it both ways – rely on their purported ‘commercial expertise’ in order to entice the ‘Mum and Dad’ Huljich Kiwisaver investors to give them their hard-earned monies, then these same commercial geniuses don’t do ‘due diligence’ and both sign Registered Prospectuses, (along with fellow former Director Peter Huljich) containing untrue ‘misstatements’?

        Don Brash and John Banks want to help run the country – but they couldn’t properly run a Huljich Kiwisaver Scheme?

        Why isn’t this getting matter the same ‘MAN ON THE MOON’ headlines that (NZ) ‘Heralded’ Rodney Hide’s complaint to the Serious Fraud Office about NZ First before the 2008 election?

        Oh – that’s right.

        In our so-called NZ ‘democracy’ – we get the Government that the majority of BIG BUSINESS want us to have.

        In 2008, the majority of CEOs didn’t want Winston Peters or NZ First to be part of any ‘coalition’ government – so their was an unprecedented mainstream media campaign to attempt to discredit them, in order to stop NZ First reaching the 5% Party vote threshold.

        It worked.

        This 2011 election – the majority of BIG BUSINESS organisations want partial privatisation of SOEs.

        Which political parties support partial privatisation of SOEs?

        National “A” Team, led by ex-Wall St bank$ter John Key, and National “B” Team, led by a yet to be charged or convicted ‘white collar’ criminal – who hasn’t had the ‘ONE LAW FOR ALL’ that he so loudly trumpets – equally applied to himself – Don Brash (former Leader of the National Party).

        All this happening in ‘clean, green NZ’ – ‘perceived’ to be the ‘least corrupt country in the world’ – along with Denmark and Singapore, according to Transparency International’s 2010 ‘Corruption Perception Index’.

        yeah right….

        Penny Bright
        Independent Candidate for Epsom.
        Campaigning against ‘white collar’ crime, corruption (and its root cause – privatisation), and ‘corporate welfare’.

        Attendee: Australian Public Sector Anti-Corruption Conference 2009
        Attendee: Transparency International’s 14th International Anti-Corruption Conference 2010

        [email deleted]

        Penny Bright
        Independent Candidate for Epsom.
        Campaigning against ‘white collar’ crime, corruption (and its root cause – privatisation), and ‘corporate welfare’.

        Attendee: Australian Public Sector Anti-Corruption Conference 2009
        Attendee: Transparency International’s 14th International Anti-Corruption Conference 2010

        [email deleted]

  8. Hilary 8

    What about that other little issue about the candidate that has been alluded to on the Standard before? Perhaps that came up in the conversation too, ‘what about this story about …’

  9. Lanthanide 9

    All in due time, I’m sure. Best for such issues to get their maximum airing, rather than being overshadowed by other events.

  10. felix 10

    None of the photos and footage of Key and Banks I’ve seen give the impression that Key is in charge.

    • Jackal 10.1

      He’s not. But what makes it worse is that he appears to be one of those people that panic when put under pressure. This is exactly the wrong type of person to be Prime Minister, as they often need to make the right decisions under extreme pressures… not freak out and do the wrong thing, as is often the case with Key.

  11. pete 11

    I wouldn’t expect “empathy” from anyone involved in ACT. I think the word you wanted was “emphatic”.

  12. tsmithfield 12

    I think you are stretching quite a lot Zet.

    If National were seriously worried about burying this conversation they would have got legal straight away and probably issued an injunction against the Herald. If the Herald was sure it passed the public interest test, then they would have published straight away before the Nats had a chance to apply for an injunction.

    If there was a conspiracy between Key and Banks to roll Brash then that would surely have passed the public interest test and the Herald would have published immediately.

    However, I can imagine a conversation along the lines of succession planning in Act given Brashes age for instance. National would probably be interested in this from the point of view of the stability of its potential coalition partner.
    This would probably meet the criteria of “interesting” as stated on TV3, and could have prompted some of the subsequent questioning.

    As it stands, the Nats have left the issue long enough to appear considered, and have given plenty of time for the media to release the recording if they felt it was that hot, which it clearly isn’t.

    Ambrose by his own admission placed the microphone on the table. His explanation seems very dodgy on a number of grounds, one being that he concealed the microphone; if he had nothing to hide, why not just place a microphone clearly on the table. Also, it looks like he has been flogging the recording off to several media outlets.

    IMO National is quite right to go to the police. This doesn’t appear to be an effort to bury the matter because they didn’t act with the urgency to suggest that burying was the objective. They have absolutely no requirement to release information about their private discussions. Why should they? It is private after all, and that is what private means.

    [too long, too late, ts. Watch the 3news clip and tell me what you think Key and Banks were discussing. The rebecca wright section is a big wink to the audience that even a Key lover like you can’t miss as hard as you try. The escalating, panic response from the Nats is in response to learning the exact contents of the recording and, then, that the HoS had given it to 3 news. Police complaint was intended specifically to block 3news. Zet]

    • felix 12.1

      What a load of bullshit.

      If there was nothing worth hearing on the recording then you and Key would be saying “go ahead and publish, you’ll only embarrass yourself”.

      If there was nothing worth hearing on it then those who have heard it wouldn’t have described it as “interesting”, or as “explosive”, or as “game-changing”.

      And if there was nothing worth hearing then National definitely wouldn’t have called in the heavies. That on it’s own looks truly desperate. A panic move.

      • tsmithfield 12.1.1

        Disagree. There could be numerous reasons for Key not to want to release the tape. For instance, if the discussion had been around future plans for the election campaign, why would they want to release this so their opponents could get advance warning?

        • felix 12.1.1.1

          Could be, sure.

          But then he could say so too. And he won’t, ‘cos it isn’t, and you know it.

          Think I’ll take notice of the opinions of people who have heard the recording, thanks, and not those of the National Party stooge with the desperate spin.

        • Ari 12.1.1.2

          TS: If his plans require the element of surprise, it’s not a campaign strategy we the people should support anyway and there is a legitimate news interest in publishing that. Politicians should be open and honest about their campaigns, their policies, and the parts of their personal life that reflect on or inform their policies, even if they generally aren’t right now, and every time we catch them at not being so, it should be made into a Very Big Deal™ by us and the news media.

          There COULD be reasons for key to not want the tape released, but any reasonable excuse would be something they could tell the public the generalities of in asking for it not to be released. But they haven’t told us anything, so it’s likely they’re trying to hush up an embarrassing conversation.

    • Lanthanide 12.2

      What’s funny about ts is he always prepared to give National the benefit of the doubt. Everything always has a nice explanation where National are doing the right thing and we just don’t understand all the subtle nuances of the situation.

      Whereas I think most left commentators here are fully prepared to dish on Labour and/or Greens when they do something they don’t agree with or think is stupid; I certainly do anyway.

      • tsmithfield 12.2.1

        Lanth, if we accept the taping was illegal, do you think those who have been taped are entitled to expect their privacy be protected. As I just said, Key and Banks might have been discussing plans for the remainder of the campaign and may not that info let out to the advantage of their opponents.

        It can’t be argued that what was on the tape was clearly in the public interest, because, the Herald had plenty of time to make that determination and decided not to publish.

        • Lanthanide 12.2.1.1

          Well I don’t accept that the taping was illegal, for starters.

          Then, because this was a staged event during an election campaign at which they invited media to attend, and frankly didn’t do a terribly good job at corralling them away from the conversation, I think they get what they had coming. If you’re sloppy, you deserve it – teach you not to be as sloppy next time. HoS editor said on the radio yesterday morning that there was an open door just behind Key (you can see it in the photos) and that the reporters outside were only about a metre away and could hear every 4th or 5th word anyway. Given the amount of camera footage of the event, it’s not impossible that a lip-reader couldn’t piece together what they were saying, either.

          When you put all that together, I think it’s rather academic as to whether it was truly accidental or not. Key and Banks were very very sloppy and have been caught out for it.

          “It can’t be argued that what was on the tape was clearly in the public interest, because, the Herald had plenty of time to make that determination and decided not to publish.”

          Actually they have said that it IS in the public interest, but they decided not to publish for “ethical reasons”.

          • Ari 12.2.1.1.1

            I’m sure you missed an “un” in that quote. 🙂

          • tsmithfield 12.2.1.1.2

            Lanth, the Herald can’t in one breath claim the information to be in the public interest and then in the other breath claim to be with-holding publishing on ethical grounds.

            If it is in the public interest, the ethical thing to do is to publish. So, the Herald is getting itself rather tied up in knots over this.

            • toad 12.2.1.1.2.1

              Interesting point TS. A journalist I’ve spoken with who has worked with Bryce Johns suggests he hasn’t got an ethical bone in his body. I suspect the real reason the HoS didn’t print a transcript is that they’ve calculated it would be more damaging to the Party they editorially support, National, than the ongoing speculation is.

              • Deadly_NZ

                But watch when it is finally released, whats the bet there will be 5 different copies of it. More disinformation..

            • Pascal's bookie 12.2.1.1.2.2

              You’re assuming that whether or not something is in the Public Interest is a clear cut thing divided by a bright and shining line. It’s not. It’s always an arguable thing, and if the HoS had published it the right would no doubt be crying and bleating that this case didn’t meet the standard.

              But everyone is tying themselves in knots. Key says that he only went to the police to stop NoTW type tactics becoming prevalent in NZ, and that he is not at all concerned about the content of this tape. If that is the case then he should give consent to publish it. That wouldn’t affect that police complaint and would remove the very real and justifiable impression that he is trying to keep what he said secret.

              On the question of whether or not the recording was inadvertent, and therefore fair game, this post covers the issues:

              http://dylanreeve.posterous.com/having-private-tea-parties-in-public

        • Colonial Viper 12.2.1.2

          As I just said, Key and Banks might have been discussing plans for the remainder of the campaign and may not that info let out to the advantage of their opponents.

          Sorry mate, ACT and National discussing their plans for working together to screw the voting public is very much in the public interest – especially if it is at odds with what they are saying in public, and especially if the details will change how people vote.

  13. just saying 13

    I think you are underestimating Key.

    I still think this is a set-up that on the surface, and in the short term, might show Key in a slightly unflattering light, but which will, in time, prove to be an advantage to National.

    For example, what if it was Brash that Hone was referring to in regard to the affair with a p-user. It might turn out that Key is in damage limitation mode of some kind, and what he said “off the record” will avert a greater discrediting of the brand. And it will seem all the more believable because of all the leg-work in advance to make it appear to be Key’s “authentic” feelings.

    Also, going to the police to protect the nation from the evils of an unscrupulous and dishonest press, could turn out to be a master-stroke if the tape turns out to contain little more than tittle-tattle.

    Will be interesting to see how this unfolds. Even if this is embarrassing, it’s unlikely to be a king-hit imo. Much as I’d love to see the ‘smiling assassin’ uncovered once and for all.

    • Lanthanide 13.1

      I think anything on the tape is more likely to be damaging to Act, than National. Hence Key’s initial “don’t care” remarks that later turned into police complaints after Banks remembered exactly what they’d said and got the new instructions to National HQ.

      • hawk 13.1.1

        To me the important factor here is that the tape was made using dodgy tatics.

        If as the camera operator states it was an “accident” and I was not intending to use it in any way. Then how did this accidental recording of information of a private conversation (even the fact that they are in public still does not make it to me acceptable) become obtained by media outlets.

        I think if it was totally accidental then he would have just destroyed that information when he found he had it. However that has not happened.

        • rosy 13.1.1.1

          Dunno if it was me I’d be going around the office saying ‘look what I scored!’ before I thought about destroying it. But maybe I’m shallow.

        • Lanthanide 13.1.1.2

          His explanation, according to the editor at HoS, is that he asked for his microphone back from National and they initially said they’d send it back to him and then indicated they were going to keep it for longer.

          He decided at that point that they were keeping his property and that it wasn’t fair, so he should hand over what he had to the HoS. He claims to have not actually listened to the full recording himself (initially, anyway, the story has moved on quite a lot since then).

          The editor questioned him in detail and at length for about an hour, asking what he considered to be all of the important and pertinent questions. He was comfortable with the camera man’s statement that it was an accident.

        • Colonial Viper 13.1.1.3

          To me the important factor here is that the tape was made using dodgy tatics.

          To me the important factor here is that Key and Banks were contriving to screw the voting public, using dodgy tactics like pre-planned leadership changes.

          • felix 13.1.1.3.1

            Yep, Key and Banks are the leaders of the parties that are running the country for us. Nothing they say to each other is off limits to us.

            • Ari 13.1.1.3.1.1

              I actually very slightly disagree with that. Things they say about spies or troops in foreign nations that might endanger people working in the national interest should not necessarily be open to public disclosure, unless there is a very good reason to do so. Everything else though, absolutely, there’s no excuse for keeping it secret if someone’s willing to put in the time and effort to publish it.

              • felix

                Fairy nuff.

                If they were talking about spies or soldiers they can say so and that’ll be that. 🙂

                • Colonial Viper

                  Although, an agreement to send new NZ troops into Afghanistan or Iran is absolutely something we should be told about 😐

                  So no hard and fast rules.

              • I would be extremely worried if Key was talking to Banks (not even an MP yet) about any troop deployments.

                I would be even more concerned if this conversation was happening in a cafe within one metre of a press scrum. It would really bring into question Key’s judgment. 

          • mike 13.1.1.3.2

            Yep and if that is the case, it would be unethical not to publish. That’s something the voters deserve to know about if we do indeed live in a democracy.

        • ghostwhowalksnz 13.1.1.4

          Really !. The cameraman was there to record a meeting. Banks was answering questions inside the cafe before Key arrived so that sound recording equipment was activated. Key arrives and everybody is told to clear out.
          There is probably a default setting on the camera ( which contains the memory card for the actual voice recoding) when the video is running the sound is running too ( to avoid bloopers when video is great but sound turned off)

        • Draco T Bastard 13.1.1.5

          Then how did this accidental recording of information of a private conversation…

          It wasn’t a private conversation. By law, you cannot have such in a public space and a cafe is public space. Go read the post that PB linked to.

          (even the fact that they are in public still does not make it to me acceptable)

          Well, that just proves that you’re a moron. Them being in a public space is what makes it not a private conversation else everybody would be summarily summonsed to court every time they walked down the CBDs mainstreet at lunch time just to see if they’d picked up anything in all the “private” conversations going on around them.

          I think if it was totally accidental then he would have just destroyed that information when he found he had it.

          It’s his job, he gets paid to record this stuff even if it was recorded accidentally.

  14. Irascible 14

    Has anyone got a continuous film of these two coniving together? A good lip reader could easily transcribe the conversation and report on it without having to worry about the shonkey legal opinions being bandied about by Key & Banks.

  15. Adrian 15

    There are very few people alive who can interpret what Key is saying at anytime, let alone a lip-reader.

  16. Sea bandit 16

    Call the keystone cops

  17. tc 17

    Whilst the media churns out space on this the real issues get forgotten, asset sales, economy, national standards, broken promises, rubbery budgets and forecasts etc etc…..what’s happening is exactly what the NACT want to happen feed by mates like DF and gluon etc

    Focus people, ignore the sham crises, much ado about nothing with less then 2 weeks to go to the grand NZ sell off if this works by distracting from real issues.

  18. The Voice of Reason 18

    My thoughts on the matter are that if all they discussed was rolling Brash, then neither man would be shy about releasing the tape. It would be a significant boost to Banks’ chances if he promised to remove Brash, not the other way round. So I reckon there is more to it than that. A corrupt promise of a cabinet seat, perhaps?
     
    Regarding Key’s meltdown, I think that comes from shock resulting from the media challenging him for the first time in 4 years. He’s simply not used to anything other than arse licking, photo ops and patsy questions. Calling the cops is a desperate effort to get his parrots back on message (Vote National, Polly wanna cracker, vote National, vote National! Raaaaark!!!).
     
    One thing that can be released is what I’m told is Key’s first response to questions about rolling Brash:
     
    “I can’t confirm that, I wasn’t at the meeting, it’s not for me to say. I wasn’t there … I didn’t say I was at the meeting. I said ‘there was a meeting’.”
     
     
     

  19. Sanctuary 19

    The reaction has got nothing to do with the contents of the tape. It is about paranoid hollow men lashing out at anyone who dares go off message. Key popularity is the result of a tightly scripted work of fiction. If any part of the story is exposed as a lie, then the whole edifice may come down. Steven Joyce and captain panic pants and the rest of the National Party communications team have spent to much time bullying, threatening, and bribing journalists to stay on message to allow some two-bit punk of a freelancer from the HoS to get in their way. He is to be made an example of, and if that annoys the HoS – well, they can chat to the owners of the paper after the election.

  20. tsmithfield 20

    To repeat a point I made above that was not responded to:

    The Herald cannot consistently claim both that it had material of public interest and at the same time that it was acting ethically not to release it. This is because it is the ethical thing to do to publish information that is of public interest. So, either the Herald is incorrect about the public interest nature of the material, or they have not behaved ethically. Given the propensity of media outlets to publish, then I think the former.

    Key is quite right not to allow the release of the information because he doesn’t have it. He is therefore relying on the media outlets to publish the full recording rather than snippets that might present the information out of context.

    • toad 20.1

      I’m sure that given the HoS gave a competitor, TV3, a copy they would give one to Key too if he asked.  Then he could release it intact to avoid that possibility.  Grasping at straws, TS.

    • uke 20.2

      The HonS is hedging its bets, as it were, trying not to annoy either the next NACT or Labour government too much.
       
      They had to immediately admit they had the tape: the news would have got out eventually and the HonS wouldn’t want to be seen as part of any right-wing MSM cover-up.
       
      But their right-wing allegiances meant they wouldn’t actually want to publish the conversation, so they have found the convenient “legal advice”-type clause that enables self-censorship.
       
      This way, the Left gets thrown a bone and there is no specific dirt sticking to the Right.

  21. infused 21

    Well if that was the convo, I don’t think it was a very bad one.

  22. The Voice of Reason 22

    Even John Armstrong is turning on the heat. The comments below are pretty good, too!
     

  23. In Vino Veritas 23

    Good-o. Why don’t you posture and guess at what was said and make up a whole post relating to what you dont know. Bloody brilliant! Then have a whole lot of RLWLCT

    • Blighty 23.1

      god save us from right whingers.

      It’s obvious that Key and Banks discussed a secret plan to roll Brash after the election and that Key said something derogatory about older voters in relation to New Zealand First.

      The line of questioning from the TV3 reporters has been very carefully designed to let us know the contents without saying them – and to invite Key and Banks to contradict what is on the tapes, which would lead to further embarrassment when they come out.

      • In Vino Veritas 23.1.1

        Blighty, you can say what you like, but when this post was written, you had absolutely no idea what they spoke about. That’s none whatsoever. It’s all just a load of wishful theorising by some desperate lefto’s looking for an angle that might give them some traction in an election they are coming a distant second in.

        God save us from left wing gossips.

        • fmacskasy 23.1.1.1

          Veritas…

          “No idea of what they spoke os” perhaps…

          But Key is definitly afraid of the tapes becomiong public. He insists he is “comfortable” with what he said – and yet he can’t be that “comfortable” if he’s called in the Police…

          • In Vino Veritas 23.1.1.1.1

            Frank, there may well be something in the tapes. But the proof will be in the pudding, so to speak, when they are released, as I suspect they ultimately will be, somehow. But to blindly speculate is just a waste of time. Surely people have got better things to debate?

  24. aerobubble 24

    Key was willing to over rule the courts and have covert video admitted
    as evidence even if illegally obtained. Labour said it could already be
    admitted currently if there was a sufficient justice issue. But Key
    wanted to go further, that even the ACT party would not swallow,
    Key wanted to retrospectively allow police covert video already
    collected!!!

    So here’s Key obviously knowing full well he was being watched,
    obviously he knes he’d just be force to climb down over covet
    video, and here’s he saying its not in the public interest to clear
    up this matter. sorry but, the guy isn’t two faced, he has a
    different face for each hour of the day.

    • Roy 24.1

      Oh but that’s different, don’t you see, because the defendants in that case are poor, powerless brown people and Key is a wealthy, powerful white person.

  25. randal 25

    kweewee and binky are wealthy white greedy persons.
    there is never enough for people ike them.
    they want everything.

  26. A typically interesting and well-argued analysis of this ‘taping’ from Gordon Campbell.

    The comparison to the Urewera ‘utterances’ is particularly interesting, as is the speculation that one reason for not publishing is not to get offside with the government – which would be craven, of course, but would explain why something is “in the public interest” but isn’t published. 

  27. tsmithfield 27

    In this interview on TV3 the interviewer states she has heard the tape, and does not disagree with Key about the contents being bland.

    So, I doubt anything explosive was discussed. Perhaps it related to the leadership of Act. If so, I don’t think many would give a monkeys about that. In fact, many would probably be pleased if Brash was gone. Perhaps it was about a ministerial post. So what, this is MMP.

    There are several reasons why Key might not want to release the tapes, even if the content is “bland” and non-incriminating.

    Firstly, to do so would be to allow the individual, HoS, and other media organisations to profit off a potentially illegal act.

    Secondly, even if the recording was released, it would undoubtably be spun for all it was worth by the media and other politicians, regardless of the content. So, Key might not be any better off by allowing the recording to be released.

    Thirdly, by going nuclear he is showing himself as strong and forceful, and not willing to take shit. These qualities tend to be respected in politicians.

    Fourthly, this way he is able to keep his message very clear; that it was an illegal act; that if the Herald had anything they would have published; and that there is an important principle to protect. He doesn’t have to get into the specifics of the tape and answer endless questions about its content.

    Fifthly, he may have found a subtle means to turn the debate on MMP, if he wants to see it gone.

    Sixthly, as Randal has pointed out above, the opposition is starved of oxygen at the moment.

    • Lanthanide 27.1

      Continuing to see National in the best possible light, as always.

    • Blighty 27.2

      lolz.

      desperate, ts.

      Hey, that was an interesting question Smalley asked Key about the demographics that support New Zealand First, wasn’t it?

      Why do you think she asked that?

      Just out of vague interest, I suppose…

      • tsmithfield 27.2.1

        Don’t know. Key started the discussion about NZ First, so it just seemed to be a continuation of that. Smalley seemed mainly interested about Keys opinion on why NZ First was losing support. Why do you see anything sinister in it? Do you think Key was discussing removing the rights of the elderly to vote or something?

  28. by going nuclear he is showing himself as strong and forceful, and not willing to take shit

    It’s all in the choice of words, isn’t it?

    How about “by being strident and panicking he is showing himself as weak and impotent, and not willing to take a deep breath”. 

    • tsmithfield 28.1

      I guess that depends on how well he sells his message as per point four. I think he does a good job on TV3 and is quite willing to front-foot his position with the media.

      Also, there is a reverse psychology element to this: Key was inviting the impression that he was covering something up to go to the police. Therefore, for him to do so, it must have been something quite serious, and a matter of principle for him.

  29. Roy 29

    He’s not showing himself to be strong and forceful. Rather, he is showing himself to be petty and narcissistic. To say that there was nothing of interest on the tape, while refusing to release it, is pettiness worthy of a kindergarten child. To claim the same sort of victimhood as the Dowler family and other victims of the NOTW is narcissistic, self-centred and emotionally tone-deaf.

    • tsmithfield 29.1

      You didn’t answer the relevant points I made. Why should he allow the offenders and other media organisations profit from their crimes?

      • Pascal's bookie 29.1.1

        They are already profiting from it. The longer the story goes on, the more they profit. If it’s so bland, he could release it and pretty much kill the story dead.

        • tsmithfield 29.1.1.1

          Well the story seems to have disappeared from Google news and has been replaced by the co-ordinated leftie attack on National party bill boards.

          So the media has already got some more political nonsense to focus on. Good on Norman for fessing up on this one btw.

          • Pascal's bookie 29.1.1.1.1

            yep, the way Norman has handled this means the story won’t have legs.

            Key’s problem however has a we ways to run yet. Key has fueled it quite needlessly, assuming it is bland of course.

            The problem he has is that he has claimed that it is bland, and that NZers won’t be interested. Even Hooten is saying that he should release the tape. I’m sure you can see the problem, but just to spell it out, if the tape has *anything* that isn’t bland then it looks like Key was trying to cover that thing up.

            • tsmithfield 29.1.1.1.1.1

              Don’t know. It looks like it was some sort of discussion around the future of Don Brash. Since Brash is not the most popular person in NZ at the moment, has been behaving as a bit of a dork, and knifed the former leader himself, this sort of talk could make Key more popular not less. In fact, people might be expecting Brash to be rolled. Key could use this argument to demonstrate that it actually was a point of principle he was arguing, since there was only upside for him in the recording being released.

              Anyway, I think there could be a bit further to run with the Greens saga, as the person involved in this action was very close to the Greens inner circle, so it is a bit of a stretch to believe that Norman would have known nothing about it. If Whale oil manages to track down the printer and the invoice it could be very interesting.

      • KJT 29.1.2

        Like the police in the Urewera, you mean.

      • kriswgtn 29.1.3

        cos he has and still is Profiteering from his 😛

  30. Fortran 30

    I am awaiting Nicky Hagar’s version – where is it ?

  31. All this shows, is the unfair system that Left-Wing parties have to contend with. Just imagine the uproar from the press if this had been Phil Goff and the Labour Party? The Herald and the rest of the media would have demanded that Labour release the conversation. Whale oil and Farrar would have been screaming non stop.However its not ,but it shows what a nasty scary lot the Act/Nats are .

  32. newsense 32

    I bet the tape has Banks come in and ask Key “So what did Steven say we do now?”

    • fmacskasy 33.1

      So… he’s moved on.

    • Puddleglum 33.2

      The article states that Alp said White (Ambrose) had nothing to do with his group.

      Also, that group was ‘anti-government’:

      The police suspension occurred in 2000 after items that allegedly belonged to White were found during a raid of Alp’s Mangere home. Alp was reportedly trying to recruit a private army to oppose the government at the time.” 

      Now, the “government at the time” was the Labour-Alliance government.

      So, you’re bringing to our attention a tenuous, ten year old link between Ambrose and an anti-Labour/Alliance group.

      Which signifies what, exactly, about TeaKey-gate? 

  33. Uturn 34

    Yes, interesting that the media ethics that let them publish that won’t let them publish Key’s mutterings. Ok not interesting, or ethical, just boringly predictably hypocritical.

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    Before The Birth: Israel’s most fervent supporters set their clocks ticking in Biblical times. They cite the kingdoms of David and Solomon as proof that, in the words of the Exodus movie’s theme-song: “This land is mine.” The majority of Israel’s backers, however, start their clocks in 1933 – the year Adolf ...
    6 days ago
  • Hard News: Public Address Word of the Year 2019: Korero phase
    In an unreliable, strange and confusing world, Public Address is proud to present a measure of comfort and stability by annually asking everyone what words or phrases sum up the year that's been – and then giving some of them consumer goods as prizes for being clever or simply lucky.Well, ...
    7 days ago
  • Generalist to specialist
    Both my parents are pretty handy – and they seem to have the right tools for most jobs in the garage and they know how to fix practically anything. A similar story could be told about their generation’s experience in the workforce – being a generalist was not unusual and ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    7 days ago
  • A “coincidence”
    When it was revealed that NZ First had tried to enrich itself from public office via the Provoncial Growth Fund, the Prime Minister assured us that everything was OK as Shane Jones, the Minister responsible for the fund, had recused himself. Except it seems that that recusal came very late ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Member’s Day
    Today is a Member's Day, and probably the last one of the year. After the marathon of the End of Life Choice Act, most of the bills up for debate today are uncontentious. First up is the second reading of Chlöe Swarbrick's Election Access Fund Bill. This will be followed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Worse than I thought
    The Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee has reported back on the government's odious and tyrannical control orders bill. As expected, the fraudulent select committee process has made no significant changes (partly because they couldn't agree, but mostly because it was a stitch-up from the start, with no intention of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The cannabis bill and the referendum
    Yesterday, the government released its draft Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill, which will be put to a non-binding referendum at the next election. I'm not a drug policy expert, but Russell Brown is, and he thinks its pretty good. And pretty obviously, it will be a massive improvement on the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Hard News: The Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill: pretty good so far
    As you're probably aware, the draft bill outlining the proposed legal cannabis regime to be put to a referendum late next year was published yesterday, and has already attracted a flurry of comment. It's notable that a good deal of the comment is about proposals that aren't actually new.A minimum ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Alignment
    One of the big problems in New Zealand climate change policy is the government working at cross-purposes with itself. It wants to reduce fossil fuel use, but encourages oil and gas exploration. It wants to reduce transport emissions, but then builds enormous new roads. The problem could be avoided if ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • How climate change will affect food production and security
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz According to the United Nations, food shortages are a threat ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • More bad faith
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Banning foreign money from our elections
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Reforming the Education Acts
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Bite-sized learning
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    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • “Not The Labour Party We Once Knew.”
    All Smiles Now: Claire Szabo is taking up her presidential role after serving as the CEO of Habitat For Humanity. Which is absolutely perfect! After KiwiBuild was so comprehensively mismanaged by Phil Twyford, the party has not only elected a new president from a thoroughly respectable not-for-profit, but one who ...
    1 week ago
  • Marxist versus liberal methodology on transgender ideology/identity politics
    While much of the NZ left has transitioned to postmodern and identity politics in relation to transgender ideology, there are some very good articles about that deploy Marxist methodology in relation to this subject.  The one below is from the British marxist group Counterfire and appeared on their site here ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Book review: The Farm by Joanne Ramos
    by Daphna Whitmore At Golden Oaks, a luxurious country retreat in the Hudson Valley, pregnant women have the best care money can buy. From the organic food, personalised exercise programmes, private yoga instruction and daily massages Golden Oaks looks like a country lodge for the upper class. Set some time ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Loosening the purse strings
    When Labour was running for election in 2017, it felt it needed to demonstrate "fiscal responsibility" and signed itself up to masochistic "budget responsibility rules". It was a fool's errand: the sorts of voters who demand fiscal responsibility are also the sorts of voters who believe that labour can never ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: How to get there
    Writing in Stuff, Joel MacManus looks at what we need to do to meet the Zero Carbon Act's targets. The core of it:1. Convert 85 per cent of vehicles on the road to electric. 2. Eliminate fossil fuels from all industrial heating up to 300 degrees Celsius. 3. Double our ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • anti-vaxxers in a measles epidemic: so many ways to be untruthful
    “Anti-vaxers are a pro-death movement,” those comments from Dr Helen Petousis-Harris speaking about six more Measles related deaths in Samoa over the past twenty-four hours. “Anti-vaxers are a pro-death movement,” those comments from Dr Helen Petousis-Harris speaking about six more Measles related deaths in Samoa ...
    SciBlogsBy Alison Campbell
    1 week ago
  • Is Youth Vaping a Problem in New Zealand?
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    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • In pursuit of “Freedom and Democracy”: Forever Wars in “America’s backyard”.
    “America the Beautiful!”, staunch defender of democracy, freedom and… a whole lot of despotic tyrants that play nice with what is called “the Washington Consensus.” America is indeed capable of immense good, but like any Nation, and most assuredly any aspirant to the mantle of Empire, great, immense evil. All ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    1 week ago
  • November ’19 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
    Image credit: The beginner’s guide to blogging I notice a few regulars no longer allow public access to the site counters. This may happen accidentally when the blog format is altered. If your blog is ...
    1 week ago
  • Whodunnit? Finding the mystery 1080 testing lab
    1080 is used to control pests in NZ. Its use is contested by a noisy few. A new report claims high levels of 1080 in rats washed up on a beach. Flora and Fauna of Aotearoa (F&F) won’t name the laboratory that did their testing. It has sparked a hunt ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    2 weeks ago
  • Authoritarian Friends, Democratic Enemies.
    What Kind Of Empire? The thing for Kiwis to decide is what kind of empire they want to belong to. The kind that, while offering its own citizens democratic rights, demands absolute obedience from its “friends”? Or, the kind that, while authoritarian at home, takes a relaxed attitude to the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Boris Johnson Goes Down
    It hasn't been a good week for the Conservatives, pollwise.  All major recent polls are showing their lead shrinking.Comparing each pollster's current (between 29/11 and 22/11) and previous most recent poll.Com Res - Conservative lead down 3 points.You Gov - Conservative lead down 1 point.Kantar - Conservative lead down 4 ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Interesting
    Within quick succession, Countdown maths wizard and twitterer Rachel Riley, alleged comedian David Baddiel and prominent lawyer Andrew Julius have all expressed very similar opinions / ideas:
    These #3billboards are going round London today, organised by ex-Labour people, horrified by what their party has become. Their principles haven’t changed, they’re ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Damn the Polls
    So, there have been a bunch of bad polls out for Labour, and even the Leftie's friend, Survation, have recently given the Conservatives a rip-snorting 11% lead.  You Gov's much vaunted MRP poll - which pretty much nailed the result in 2015 - is currently predicting a comfortable majority for ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Europe declares an emergency
    The European Parliament has voted overwhelmingly to declare a climate emergency:The European parliament has declared a global “climate and environmental emergency” as it urged all EU countries to commit to net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. The vote came as scientists warned that the world may have already crossed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • A Bi-Partisan Commitment To X-ing “P”.
    Pure Fear: Worse than Heroin, this drug’s addictive power was terrifying. People under its influence didn’t drift off to Elysium. Nor did it persuade inadequate individuals that they could conquer the world. No, this drug – pure crystal methamphetamine, “P” for short – unlocked the gates of Hell itself. It ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Advice about measles: when ignorance is definitely not a virtue
    As the rate of measles infection, and of deaths, continues to climb in Samoa, antivaccination activists infectious disease proponents seem intent on doubling down on their claims about vaccination. (Check pretty much any news-media FB post about measles & you’ll see exactly what I mean.) Unfortunately, some of them have ...
    SciBlogsBy Alison Campbell
    2 weeks ago
  • Samoa’s devastating measles epidemic – why and how bad?
    Samoa are experiencing a devastating measles epidemic. It is possible that 2-3% of the population will ultimately be infected by the time it is over. Hopefully the mass immunisation campaign currently under way can mitigate some of this, for many it is too late. The first question many people ask ...
    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    2 weeks ago
  • “It’s basic rights we are defending”: the Meghan Murphy interview
    Meghan Murphy is a Canadian writer and journalist She runs the Feminist Current website which she founded in 2012.  She was a keynote speaker for the Feminism2020 conference in Wellington this month. When Massey University cancelled the original venue booking Feminism2020 was hosted in Parliament by MP David Seymour. Meghan ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • A week of protests in Colombia
    Text and photos by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh Colombia has lived through one week of protests against the economic measures taken by president Duque. What looked like a protest that would fizzle out after its first day on November 21st is still going strong. Part of the reason for the continuance ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Anti-neutrinos–When you are your own opposite
    Around a million billion pass through you each second, almost all originating from our sun, but few of them are likely to interact with you enroute. I was reading in a physics magazine earlier in the week about the nature of neutrinos. These are extremely numerous elementary particles, but only ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    2 weeks ago
  • Exoplanets, life, and the danger of a single study
    By Pallab Ghosh There’s value in covering new research advances, even when the underlying science is unsettled. But there are also risks. The recent announcement that scientists discovered water on the planet K2-18b, 110 light years away, prompted a media swoon. News stories, including a piece written by me, billed ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • The Intersex Continuum
    I wrote this review a couple of years ago when I was still in the process of getting my head around the politics of transgenderism, and specifically the claim that intersex conditions lend support to the notion that sex is ‘socially constructed’. Since writing this review I have come across ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Leaving us with the bill
    Two weeks ago, Malaysian-owned oil company Tamarind declared it was insolvent and went into administration after a failed offshore drilling campaign. Tamarind apparently specialises in buying oil fields at the end of their life and trying to squeeze out the last few drops of pollution. But part of their scam ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • How much does flying contribute to climate change?
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz How much does our use of air travel contribute to the ...
    SciBlogsBy Shaun Hendy
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: The task before us
    Two weeks ago, the Zero Carbon Act became law. Right this moment, the Climate Change Commisison will be working on its initial budgets for 2022-25 and 2026-2030, and the UN has just given them a very clear steer:Countries must make an unprecedented effort to cut their levels of greenhouse gases ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Among my favourite asteroids: (2309) Mr. Spock
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    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    2 weeks ago
  • Measles deaths and antivax misinformation
    Today the death toll from measles in Samoa rose to 32. All but four of the dead were less than 5 years old. Absolutely terrible, heartbreaking, news. That statistic alone should be enough to give the lie to the common claim by antivaccination activists plague enthusiasts that “measles is a ...
    SciBlogsBy Alison Campbell
    2 weeks ago
  • Colombia: the state murder of Dilan Cruz
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    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Anti-fluoride propagandists appear not to read the articles they promote
    Anti-fluoride activists are rubbing their hands in glee over what they claim is “yet another study” showing fluoride harms the brains of children. But their promotion relies on IQ relationships which the paper’s authors acknowledge disappearing when outliers or other factors are considered. And they completely ignore other relationships ...
    2 weeks ago

  • New law sets up $300m Venture Capital Fund
    New Zealand firms expanding beyond the start-up phase are set for more support after today’s passage of the Venture Capital Fund Bill, Associate Finance Minister David Parker said. The Bill, which establishes a $300 million Venture Capital Fund, puts in place a key initiative of the Wellbeing Budget’s economic package. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 hours ago
  • New Zealand’s National Statement to COP25
    E ngā mana, e ngā reo, e ngā iwi, e ngā rau rangatira mā. Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou katoa. Señora Presidenta, Excellencies, Delegates. International action A common thread that runs through the Paris Agreement is the commitment we have made to each other to do what we can to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 hours ago
  • Priorities for 2020 Wellbeing Budget outlined
    Budget 2020 will continue the Coalition Government’s focus on tackling the long-term challenges facing New Zealand while also investing to future-proof the economy. When the Government took office in 2017 it was left with crumbling infrastructure, severe underinvestment in public services, degraded rivers and lakes, a housing crisis and rising ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    9 hours ago
  • $12 billion in extra infrastructure investment
    The Government is lifting capital investment to the highest level in more than 20 years as it takes the next step to future-proof New Zealand. Finance Minister Grant Robertson has announced $12 billion of new investment, with $8 billion for specific capital projects and $4 billion to be added to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    9 hours ago
  • Strong economy, careful spending gives $12bn of surpluses
    The Government is forecast to run $12 billion worth of surpluses across the four years to 2023/24 as the economy continues to grow. The surpluses will help fund day-to-day capital requirements each year. These include fixing leaky hospitals, building new classrooms to cover population growth and take pressure off class ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    9 hours ago
  • Minister welcomes data-rich coastline mapping tool
    The Minister responsible for the Marine and Coastal Area (Takutai Moana) Act 2011 (te Takutai Moana Act 2011), Andrew Little has welcomed the launch of an online geospatial tool that provides data-rich, dynamic coastline maps that will significantly boost research and evidence-gathering under the Act. Te Kete Kōrero a Te ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    10 hours ago
  • Chief Victims Advisor reappointed for a further two years
    The Chief Victims Advisor to Government Dr Kim McGregor, QSO, has been reappointed in her role for a further two years. Dr McGregor has held the role since it was established in November 2015. She provides independent advice to government on how to improve the criminal justice system for victims. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    11 hours ago
  • New Zealand tsunami monitoring and detection system to be established
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Civil Defence Minister Peeni Henare have today announced the deployment of a network of DART (Deep-ocean Assessment and Reporting of Tsunami) buoys. “New Zealand and the Pacific region are particularly vulnerable to natural disasters. It is vital we have adequate warning systems in place,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    11 hours ago
  • DART Buoys Announcement
    DART Buoys Announcement Aotea Wharf, 9.30am 11 December 2019   Acknowledgements Acknowledgements to Minister for Civil Defence Hon Peeni Henare also here today. White Island It is with regret that this event shadows the tragic natural disaster two days ago. The volcanic eruptions on White Island have claimed 5 lives, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    11 hours ago
  • Final steps for racing industry reform
    Racing Minister Winston Peters has welcomed the first reading of the Racing Industry Bill in parliament today. This is the second of two Bills that have been introduced this year to revitalise New Zealand’s racing industry. “Our domestic racing industry has been in serious decline.  The Government is committed to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Funding to promote New Zealand Sign Language initiatives
    Minister for Disability Issues, Carmel Sepuloni, is pleased to announce that $291,321 is to be awarded to national and local community initiatives to maintain and promote the use of New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL). “New Zealand is one of the few countries  in the world where Sign Language is an ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • How New Zealand defines and recognises veterans
    Minister for Veterans Ron Mark has announced today the Coalition Government’s initial response to work completed by the independent statutory body, the Veterans’ Advisory Board. “When Professor Ron Paterson completed his review of the Veterans’ Support Act in 2018, he made a number of recommendations, including one which I referred ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government to fund lion’s share of Ohakea water scheme
    The Government will fund the bulk of the cost of a rural water supply for the Ohakea community affected by PFAS contamination, Environment Minister David Parker announced today at a meeting of local residents. This new water scheme will provide a reliable and clean source of drinking water to the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Prime Minister statement on White Island eruption
    I have had the opportunity to be briefed on the details of the volcanic eruption of Whakaari/White Island, off the coast of Whakatane in the Bay of Plenty.  The eruption happened at 2.11pm today.  It continues to be an evolving situation.  We know that there were a number of tourists ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Govt funds $100k for weather-hit communities
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare have today confirmed initial Government support of $100,000 for communities affected by the severe weather that swept across the South Island and lower North Island over the weekend. The contribution will be made to Mayoral relief funds across the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Death of NZ High Commissioner to Cook Islands
    New Zealand's High Commissioner to the Cook Islands, Tessa Temata, died in Palmerston North over the weekend, Foreign Minister Winston Peters said today. Ms Temata, 52, had recently returned to New Zealand for medical treatment. "On behalf of the Government and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, we extend ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Wellington rail upgrade full steam ahead
    Transport Minister Phil Twyford today announced construction is underway on Wellington commuter rail upgrades which will mean more frequent services and fewer breakdowns. The upgrades include converting the Trentham to Upper Hutt single track section to a double track, with a new signalling system, upgraded stations and level crossings, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Defence Climate Change Implementation Plan released
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark and Minister for Climate Change James Shaw have announced the release of a Defence Climate Change Implementation Work Plan, titled Responding to the Climate Crisis: An Implementation Plan.  The plan sets out a series of recommendations based on the 2018 New Zealand Defence Assessment, The ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Govt releases funding to support South Canterbury
    A medium-scale adverse event has been declared for the South Canterbury district, which will see up to $50,000 in funding made available to support farming communities which have been significantly affected by recent heavy rain and flooding in the area, says Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor. “Two weeks of solid rain ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Speech at launch of Rethinking Plastics Report
    Thank you Professor Juliet Gerrard and your team for the comprehensive and extremely helpful report and recommendations. Thank you too to all the stakeholders and interested parties who have contributed ideas and thinking to it. “Making best practice, standard practice” is a great framework for change and the action plan ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Govt pledges next steps on plastic waste
    The Government will phase out more single-use plastics following the success of its single-use plastic bag ban earlier this year and the release today of a pivotal report for dealing with waste. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has welcomed the Rethinking Plastics in Aotearoa New Zealandreport, released by her Chief Science Advisor ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • International student enrolments grow in universities and the regions
    International education continues to thrive as the Government focuses on quality over quantity, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said. The tuition revenue from international education increased to $1.16 billion last year with the average tuition fee per student increasing by $960. The total number of international students enrolled in New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Speech to Government Economics Network 2019 Conference
    I want to talk about one of the most pressing issues in our national life: the housing crisis and the poor performance of our cities. The argument I want to make to you is that generations of urban land use policy have lacked a decent grounding in economics. The consequences ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • DHB leadership renewed and strengthened
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says new appointments to DHBs represent a significant changing of the guard, with 13 new chairs including four Māori chairs. Today 76 appointments have been announced to complement elected board members, as well as eight elected members appointed as either chair or deputy chair.  Four ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Tabuteau to advance New Zealand’s trade and political interests with European partners
    Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Foreign Affairs, Fletcher Tabuteau, is travelling to Germany, Poland, Austria, and Spain next week to bolster New Zealand’s political and trade relationships in Europe. While in Spain, Mr Tabuteau will represent New Zealand at the 14th Asia-Europe (ASEM) Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in Madrid. “New Zealand strongly supports ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Statement from the Prime Minister on Kris Faafoi
    “I’ve spoken to Minister Faafoi, who has apologised for his poor handling of this issue,” Jacinda Ardern said. “I have confidence in Kris as a hardworking and effective Minister, but this should have been dealt with in a much clearer manner, and I’ve made my views on that very clear ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Tonga-New Zealand Joint Ministerial Forum
    Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters met with Tongan Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pohiva Tu'i'onetoa in Wellington today. The pair signed a Statement of Partnership setting out joint priorities for cooperation out to 2023.  “We welcomed Prime Minister Tu'i'onetoa on his first visit to New Zealand as Prime Minister. Tonga ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Shooting in Kurow
    The Minister of Police Stuart Nash says his sympathies are with the family of a man who died after being shot by Police in Kurow. “Initial reports are that Police were called by a family member to help the man who was threatening to harm himself,” Mr Nash says. “However ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government delivers funding boost for ethnic communities
    Ethnic communities will be able to plan and deliver more community initiatives thanks to an increase in Government funding, Minister for Ethnic Communities Hon Jenny Salesa said today. “Ensuring Aotearoa New Zealand is a place we can all be proud to call home has been a key priority of our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Govt supports Southland farmers in sustainability
    Healthier waterways, better productivity and farmer wellbeing are front and centre in a new project involving more than 1000 Southland farmers and growers. Minister of Agriculture Damien O’Connor today announced that the Thriving Southland Change and Innovation Project is the first region-wide extension programme supported by the $229 million Sustainable ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Flood of support for Top of the South catchment
    Work to look after nature and restore freshwater quality in Te Hoiere/Pelorus River catchment is getting a significant boost, thanks to new Government funding support Minister for Conservation Eugenie Sage announced in Canvastown today. “Every New Zealander should be able to swim in their local river without getting sick, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Eight Queen’s Counsel appointed under new criterion
    Eight Queen’s Counsel have been appointed under a process that includes the new criterion of a commitment to improving access to justice, Attorney-General David Parker announced today. “The new criterion was included this year. It emphasises that excellence and leadership in the profession can be seen through a wider, community ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Major expansion for Wellington’s Onslow College
    Onslow College in Wellington will get 20 new classrooms for more than 400 students, Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. The much-needed investment will relieve growth pressure the school has been experiencing for some time. Seven existing classrooms which have deteriorated over time will also be replaced, bringing the total ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Talented young Kiwis awarded PM’s Scholarships to Asia and Latin America
    More than 250 young New Zealanders will add international experience to their education, thanks to the latest Prime Minister’s Scholarships for Asia (PMSA) and Latin America (PMSLA), Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. This round of scholarships supports 252 recent graduates or current students to undertake study, research or internships ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government to improve competitiveness and transparency in the retail fuel market
    Consumers will benefit from a more competitive, transparent retail fuel market as a result of changes the Government will be making in response to the findings of the Commerce Commission’s study of the fuel sector. “We accept the Commission’s findings and, as the Prime Minister has said, we’re ready to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • More cancer medicines for more people
    Five new cancer medicines have now been funded this year, meaning thousands of people have more treatment options PHARMAC has today announced that it has approved two new medicines for funding – fulvestrant for breast cancer and olaparib for ovarian cancer. This follows earlier decisions on advanced lung cancer treatment alectinib, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Government acts to sort out electoral ‘coin toss’ problem
    The Minister of Local Government, Hon Nanaia Mahuta says the Government will consider making changes to local electoral legislation before the 2022 elections to fix the problems that have arisen where elections are settled by a coin toss.  The Minister says the recount process in the Murupara- Galatea ward at ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • NZ to Join IMO Convention to Reduce Ship Emissions
    New Zealand will sign up to new international maritime regulations to reduce ship emissions and lift air quality around ports and harbours, Associate Transport Minister Julie Anne Genter announced today. Subject to completion of the Parliamentary treaty examination process, New Zealand will sign up to Annex VI of MARPOL, an ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
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