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Know when to walk away

Written By: - Date published: 10:52 pm, June 17th, 2012 - 92 comments
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Tony Ryall said on Q+A today that the government would not sell assets if they did not get a good price. He wouldn’t tell Shane Taurima what a good price would be but wanted to be very clear that a sale was not necessarily a done deal. Could this be the first sign that Curia is telling National, as according to Matthew Hooton they did with teacher numbers,  that MOM is a turkey?



92 comments on “Know when to walk away ”

  1. xtasy 1

    Was it not on the news a night or two ago, well, maybe exaggerated a bit again, but claims were, there are young girls as young as 13 selling their body and “services” for as low as 20 dollars now, so they can buy some booze.

    If that is at all true, then I feel, that must be about the level NZ has reached under this government. It may represent a good reflection of what level of “price” is a “going rate” now. Ryall is one of the old guard, demagogues and radicals within National’s ranks. He is a hard liner and propagandist par excellence (in their ways).

    That man turns a shameful truth into a glorious moment of achievement, same as the once successful propagandist Goebbels was doing for the German Nazis.

    So whatever he may fancy, or whatever cabinet may fancy, the price can under present market conditions not be all that much better than the going rate for an under aged sex worker in South Auckland, I presume.

    There are so many economies on the brink, and IMF, European Central Bank, and whosoever are looking at any desperate measures to “solve” economic problems by advising virtual “fire sales”.

    NatACT is onto the game with the asset sales, and they are merely “testing” the market, as it would be described. Key is an expert in this. Reality will be, believe it or not, the sale will likely be called off, due to no good tender being given. That is their back-door, and it will be similar to the class room size debacle.

    Key and Nats are losers and have totally lost the plot now, they are, as Ryall indicated, now leaving backdoor exits open, just to get out of the dismal, unpopular postion they have taken.

    It is all over, there are NO more answers, solutions and alternatives. They may as well call for an early election now, because National’s agenda is stuffed totally.

    • Gosman 1.1

      Reaching for the Nazi analogy – Classy.

      Good to see reasoned debate is at the usual levels here.

      • bbfloyd 1.1.1

        boring to see comment that has no more value than getting yourself in print on the net gossy……for no reason other than to miss the point….A skill you’ve mastered well..

        • Gosman

          What’s boring is to see another tired old ‘The right in NZ are the same as the Nazi’s’ cliche being spouted by a hard core leftist.

          Can’t you guy’s think of some other quasi fascist grouping to unfavourably compare your political opponents to?

  2. Draco T Bastard 2

    It doesn’t matter what the price is – NACT will sell these assets due to it being ideological (private does it better than government) and because it improves their rich mates ability to bludge off everyone else.

    • xtasy 2.1

      Yes, DTB, that is the usual agenda, but presently they are getting pretty desperate, and they worry about another term, so with voters and the wider public slowly realising what goes on, they are scared of another blunder. And asset sales going wrong are an even greate blunder than large class sizes to save in education. Wait and see!

    • DTB – yes National will sell our assets because by doing so they can put all working class New Zealander’s in a position where they cannot afford to have a choice, they must accept what their Masters have laid out for them. Choice is for the elite.

      Our Masters who are they, at present National but if John Key has his way, The Chinese and American Corporate.
      I have no objection to Chinese as a trading nation, they do it well, it’s their human rights I deplore.
      America is not much better in terms of fair monetary compensation for working people.

      But they will build their large factories in rural NZ where animal and dairy or vegetables, product will go in the one end and come out the other end ready for export.

      Good for NZ but you do need educated people to work for low wages in Chinese super factories, you can see what the National Government is doing, through their education policies they are setting up our young as uneducated workers for Chinese super farms and factories.

      But if the Chinese have taken over printing $US and are buying US Stocks and bonds without going through the markets and have an option to buy Banks in USA as the following article reports ….

      Is that why Corporate America wants out of USA and is eager with an option to buy into NZ and Key wants the centre of financial transactions to be New Zealand.

      Interesting reading….

      TUESDAY, JUNE 05, 2012
      Fragility and Collapse: Slowly at first, then all

    • Pink postman 2.3

      Correct D bastard .Privatization is in their DNA.Just watch the local body sale up in the next couple of years. As for the power sell off I bet they already have a buyer lined up. They are convinced that private is best regardles of the balls up we have experienced overt the last few years.
      The covert privatization” contracting out ” beloved off local body Tories has been a complete failure and is costing ratepayers dearly .

  3. Gosman 3

    Given the fact that the partial privatisation of five SOE’s was the cornerstone of their 2011 election campaign why would they reverse this decision again? They would lose the respect of their right wing supporters if they attempted that.

    • Kotahi Tane Huna 3.1

      Why? Perhaps the available pool of right wing dupes is dwindling at an ever increasing rate, and they don’t feel comfortable representing a demographic that can fit in a phonebox.

    • felix 3.2

      Those far enough to the right that they would refuse to vote for a party on the basis that they weren’t selling off our publicly owned assets are a tiny group of extremists who support parties which poll around or beneath the margin of error.

      Not a great concern for National electorally, even if they agree with them in principle.

    • ScottGN 3.3

      If you listen to Hooten et al they lost that respect a long time ago.

    • bbfloyd 3.4

      you mean they would lose your respect gossomer……when’s the next phoneebox meeting again?

      • Gosman 3.4.1

        If it makes you feel better to think that the numbers of people supporting right wing economic ideas are that small then more power to you. I quite like the idea of being underestimated.

        • McFlock

          gos, I’m sure you do like that idea. 
          Mostly because it’s impossible for you to ever experience it. 

          • Gosman

            And yet economic policies they more closely align with my political ideology are prevalent in much of the World McChuck whilst those you might prefer seem to langusish.

            If that is the result of being in the small minority then Viva the few I say.

            • McFlock

              So if the rest of the world decided to jump off a cliff, you’d do it with pride.
              Think of the boasting you could do if you were at the head of the pack.

              • Gosman

                You’re all over the place today McFluck. First I’m in the minority that then I’m in the majority but just not cutting edge. When you make up your mind get back to me please.

                • McFlock

                  I took

                    And yet economic policies they more closely align with my political ideology are prevalent in much of the World McChuck whilst those you might prefer seem to langusish.  

                  to be a drunken attempt to claim that a greater part of the world followed your economic policies than mine.
                  Wet lunch, was it? Try reading my comment again after a short nap.

                  • Gosman

                    Once again McFlack you have created your own little reality world in cyberspace where you have declared youself the victor of an argument that noone cares about other than yourself. Congrats on that. Your family must be so proud of you.

                    • McFlock

                      Whatever, dude. Have fun “langusish”-ing at work for the next hour or so.

            • Draco T Bastard

              That would be due to the politicians listening to corporates and capitalists rather than the people.

        • Dr Terry

          You are simply not estimated at all.

    • mike e 3.5

      Go ss man Shonkey is a polls dancer

  4. It’s not the first sign of anything, it’s a reflection of market realities. The floats were always going to be dependent on the market at the time.

    I think the first MOM float is likely to go ahead to test the market, and how successful (or unsuccessful) that is will determine what happens with the rest, or at least the timining of subsequent IPOs.

    I think it would be a good thing if only one or two MON floats happen this term, and the rest should only go ahead if they are proven to be useful and undisastrous. I suspect there will be some who hope they are disastrous to prove a point, but that would be bad for the country.

    • felix 4.1

      “The floats were always going to be dependent on the market at the time.”

      Not according to John Key. He was specifically asked this question and he said the assets were going to be sold regardless as it was the right thing to to.

      Now it looks like his senior minister is publicly disagreeing with him.

    • Socialist Paddy 4.2

      As soon as the entities are corporatised and given a professional board of directors and told to go and maximise the dollar return they just become another blood sucking leach on ordinary kiwis the way that Telecom became.

      • Gosman 4.2.1

        What decisions have they made since they were corporitised in the 1980’s have been driven by non-commercial considerations?

    • KJT 4.3

      We always hope that privatisations will not be disastrous.

      Because we cannot afford more disasters like the last round of privatisations. 14 billion a year plus isn’t it?

      But such idiot policy cannot fail to be a disaster, if not immediately, but further down the track when energy shortages worldwide will make it necessary to own our own energy supplies.

      We already know that SOE prices were deliberately raised, so the private power companies can compete. Even National had to admit that selling ACC was pointless because private insurance could not compete on equal terms. So much for the vaunted efficiency of the private sector.

      Privatisation, of essential infrastructure, has been disastrous everywhere in the world. Why do clowns like you think these will be any different??

      • Gosman 4.3.1

        “We already know that SOE prices were deliberately raised, so the private power companies can compete.”

        I’d suggest we don’t know that at all. You might assume that is the case but unless you have evidence that power prices have been set by political decree to allow competition it is mere speculation.

        • Draco T Bastard

          We actually do know that. All we have to do is look to energy privatisation elsewhere. Remember the Enron guys laughing because they were screwing old people? Yeah, that’s the real face of privatisation. Increased profits, decreased services and there’s no argument to increase supply when all you need to do is increase rents.

          • Gosman

            So I was right. No hard evidence just supposition based on naked political bias.

            • Draco T Bastard

              Ah, no.

              • Gosman

                Ummmm… that doesn’t prove anything other than some people behave badly (well duh!).

                I am waiting to see evidence that SOE prices were deliberately raised, so the private power companies can compete.

                Do you have such evidence DTB?

                • Jackal

                  You’re asking for evidence of something that will occur in the future… Dork! The likely scenario is that power prices will increase more than they normally would (around 8% per annum since 2000), if our power companies are privatized. Do you have evidence this won’t be the case?

                  • Gosman

                    Ummmmm…. no.

                    Let’s look at the quote we are discussing shall we Jackal

                    “We already know that SOE prices were deliberately raised, so the private power companies can compete.”

                    Please note the past tense used in that sentence. Price WERE raised not that they are going to be raised in the future.

                    Perhaps all that brain eating you did in the past has led to Mad cow disease.

                • The likely scenario is that power prices will increase more than they normally would

                  Do you have evidence this will be the case? If not you are stating something you have no way of knowing.

                  I hope to heck they don’t keep rising at 8%, but I have already taken measures to reduce power use.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  All the evidence suggests that privatisation is more expensive than government run services. Prices in a market drop to the most expensive available thus the SOE prices would have been raised to meet the privately owned ones. Simple logic following your own ideology.

                  Yeah, and the people who behave badly are the private owners of what was once in the commons.

            • Dr Terry

              You would know.

    • John M 4.4

      Anything you say, Wormtongue.

  5. Salsy 5

    The reason they would back away from the idea is simple. They will already be struggling for coalition partners in the future – with the massively unpopular asset sales legacy, soaring power prices and more foreign ownership – they will never be trusted to take the benches again… Asset Sales will be political suicide for National. Will be interesting to see if they sacrifice the party and go ahead..

    • Gosman 5.1

      All depends if John Key (or whoever leads the National party after the next election) wishes to swallow their pride and go into coalition with Winston Peters once again. I personally find it distastful but it is a distinct possibility.

      • I’m not convinced Winston is going to want to go with National if he has another option, not after his first attempt at a coalition with them.

        • bbfloyd

          i have a sneaking suspicion that peters understands the national party too well to expect them to be capable of genuine cross party dialogue, and negotiation when it comes to doing their masters bidding…..

          he will know well that all the other parties have no bosses other than the constituents…which makes them amenable to a more flexible, and realistic approach to governance…..

    • KJT 5.2

      Must be a lot of tension between those who were parachuted in to burgle NZ and go, and those who want to keep their parliamentary salaries.

      I suppose their is room for 61 traitors, in Goldman’s.

  6. happynz 6

    Pete George:

    and the rest should only go ahead if they are proven to be useful and undisastrous.

    Undisastrous? That’s a new one. 😀

    Yeah, let’s take a multi-billion dollar punt and see if it’s “undisastrous.” That’s not a great selling point. It’s like saying, “Well, that’s really shit, but not complete shit if you get my drift. Ya wanna carry on?”

  7. Remind me of how much has already been sunk into preparations for selling?

    • yeshe 7.1

      exactly … and why so much waste on overseas consultants if the majority of shares are going to be picked up by ‘regular’ Kiwis ?? Yeah, right.

  8. ianmac 8

    For National to back off Asset Sales would cause a snap election. They cannot politically do a U-turn.

    • Jackal 8.1

      I think they will weigh up the pros and cons… if there’s more to be gained from going ahead even when the financial situation is disadvantageous for New Zealand in general (as it is now), then they will because it benefits them and their rich investor mates. If the polling shows that the party will take too much of a hit, then they won’t. It’s really an internal debate between their greed for power and their greed for money at this stage. A change in policy direction shouldn’t spark a snap election.

    • Dr Terry 8.2

      We wish!!

  9. Enough is Enough 9

    Dont be fooled by Ryal’s weasle words. It is damage control. “yeay yeah we will only sell if it is the right thing for New Zealand…” blah blah.

    Load of BULLSHIT.

    They are selling them. If the world economy collapses in the next 3 months they will still sell them. What the government gets out of them is not really a consideration for them. It is how little Key and his friends can get the assets for which is their real motivating factor.

    Key’s “blind” trust will be investing in this up to its blind eye lids. The less the assets go for the better for him personally.

    • Nick 9.1

      I agree, at least Mighty River Power is going regardless of the price they get for it. They’ll just say ‘given the current economic situation this was a good price…’. They might postpone other sales enough that Labour can pick up the pieces after 2014 but at least one power company will be sold.

      Which is a shame as there are good opportunities in that company to expand on the work they are doing overseas particularly in geothermal generation that is in demand and Mighty River Power is one of the best at it in the world.

      If its an experiment to see if is ‘undisastrous’ then its forgoing an excellent opportunity to export expertise and bring in foreign cash to the government.

      • tc 9.1.1

        It’s first because it’s the juciest of them all simply as it’s not Genesis/Meridian which have issues still being worked through due to Brownlee forcing a power station swap neither asked for but have had to deal with anyway.

        Anyone sussed out the impact of the treaty settlements and the use of waikato river water MRP need to generate power from in terms of potential volatility in earnings……can MRP do what they like without compensation or do they have obligations.

        Is this why shonkey and co want them released from SOE compliance maybe ?

  10. Sanctuary 10

    It looks like National’s attempts to slash spending faster than their revenue base collapses is not going see their arbitrarily selected target for a surplus by 2014 reached. What better political excuse to cover for the bankruptcy of your economic policy than cancelling the asset sales and blaming that for the failure to get into surplus?

  11. Adrian 11

    Why are they rushing the process, and ignoring committee scrutiny, by more than six weeks?
    Do the Nats know something about Banks’ immediate future, meaning he may not be there ?
    They must know that they have lost Winston in the long term as Grey Power is leading the protest over assetts, and GP are Winnies oxygen.

  12. captain hook 12

    whatever national does they are toast anyway.
    as long as they dont do anything stupid out of spite in the meantime!

  13. A proposed amendment to the Mixed Ownership Model has just been released, to change 51% voting rights to 51% crown ownership.

    – the Crown must hold 51% of every class of shares in the company, as well as 51% of every class of the voting securities (which are voting shares and other securities with voting rights); and
    – no person (other than the Crown) will be able to have relevant interests in more than 10% of any class of shares in the company or more than 10% of any class of the voting securities of the company


    • I’m more than just pleased about this. 51% total ownership was something I and United Future campaigned on, and it was agreed to in the United Future/National Confidence and Supply agreement, so this holds fast to that stand.

      It also shows that United Future can act as a moderator on National.

      I know it’s not as much as many want, but it was an important principle to me – and it shows that something can come out of posts and comments on The Standard.

      • John M 13.1.1

        Next move is we get Peter Dunne to hold off until the result of the referendum is known…heck…why not just get him to vote the legislation down and be done with it? Easy peasy, Pete baby… You UFers really know how to run a campaign!!!

        • Pete George

          I don’t support holding back the legislative process in case a petition gets enough signatures and in case a referendum manages to have a fair fact-based campaign and informed vote. It would be ludicrous to set a precedent for referendum based filibustering.

          And I don’t support voting down the legislation, that would be breaking my commitments prior to and since the election, and I’ve seen nothing (except for over the top bullshit) that would convince me to change my position – in fact the bullshit strengthens my position.

          • KJT

            Pity like most NACT supporters you do not bother to look at the evidence.

            The evidence that conclusively shows that asset sales and privatisation are not in New Zealand’s best interests.

            You only have to look at what the last lot cost us.

            PG. The bullshit is from your side.

      • Te Reo Putake 13.1.2

        United Future did not campaign on this, Pete. It never featured in their campaign literature, was not mentioned in the TV spots, and the only time Dunne touched on it was on one obscure media feature. You already know this, because it took you two days to find the latter media spot when you were previously challenged about whether or not it was UF policy. So congrats, three lies today, a new personal best.

        • Pete George

          You’re making a fool of yourself again. Your bullshit has been debunked long ago. I’m surprised moderators let you get away with repeating attempts at smears.

          On ownership:
          Asset sales 49% ownership at risk?

          And on asset sales position:
          United Future and Asset Sales – the facts.

          [lprent: Next thing you’ll be trying to tell me that there is a such a thing as an absolute truth. Anyone trained in science or law or most skills knows that ‘truth’ depends on the frame of reference – and there are always exceptions to the normal frames..

          Perhaps you should look at why we don’t stop you (or anyone else) doing it as well. One persons ‘smears’ are another persons facts.

          For “smears”, we tend to draw the line at idiots trying to tell us why we’re running this site, assertions of facts that we think are actionable under defamation, assertions of inherent superiority or inferiority based on race gender age affiliations etc, or when we’re just really really bored with reading about them. ]

          • Te Reo Putake

            Nice try, Pete, but after the fact justifications don’t cut it.  United Future did not campaign on asset sales at all. The literature was silent, the website never mentioned a position one way or the other and Dunne refused to talk about it all, except for a couple of defensive responses where he said that if National pushed ahead with the sales, he prefer the majority stayed in public ownership. That’s not campaigning for something. UF have never campaigned for assets sales of any kind. Fact.
            Pete, you are a liar. Labour does not support your sad wee website. You do not have any supporting correspondence that they do despite claiming that you do and United Fibbers did not campaign on asset sales. 3 lies. If I am wrong, put the evidence up for all to see. But you can’t, can you?

            • Pete George

              United Future did not campaign on asset sales at all.

              You are straight out wrong on that. The links prove you are wrong – I put up the evidence, and that evidence has been accepted on The Standard already, and accepted elsewhere, widely.

              You are either wilfully ignorant or deliberately lying and smearing. You keep making false claims despite evidence to the contrary.

              You are wrong, that is why YOU never front up with evidence to support your bullshit, because there is nothing to back what you keep repeating.

              [lprent: “The Standard” is a dumb program. It has no opinions on anything that I haven’t programmed into it. You’re very close to the heresy of intelligence of machines referred to in the policy. I’d suggest you avoid using it as a argument wherever this programmer can see it.

              But I suspect that you are referring to a small number of people amongst the hundreds of people who comment on this site each week. I’d have a really hard time accepting that referring to a micro fraction on the population here as “accepted” of a statement is valid. That is because it is very seldom that I have ever seen anything being accepted by others in statements. At best you’ll see them shift posture in comments months later.

              But in all likelihood it is that they simply couldn’t be bothered arguing about whatever it was. That frequently happens and is the cause of a great deal of angst by the faithful who think it is important as they issue piteous calls for people to engage (with them)…. If that happens I usually tell them to learn how to make the damn topic interesting and sprucing up their online personality wouldn’t go astray either.

              I’d have less of a problem if you referred to it as commentators not providing a refutation of your opinion. As a description that is far far more likely to be what it happening. But taking a silence as implied agreement is also one of the things that we frown on because it inevitably leads to the most stupid flame wars known to bored moderators. Or even better linking to specific comments supporting your claim.

              But making a such a statement is somewhat dangerous here for all of the reasons above. ]

              • Te Reo Putake

                Show me the UF literature campaigning for asset sales, then. Or the correspondence from Labour authorising you to claim their endorsement for your site. You can’t, because UF didn’t campaign for asset sales and the LP do not support your site. You are a bullshit artist, Pete, caught 3 times today, dead to rights. Give it away, man, you’ve been Dunne like a dinner.

                • I’ve linked to proof of campaigning on (not for) asset sales. You obviously haven’t bothered to check or you’d have seen that. So you aren’t interested in facts, only repeating your lies. And wait for MS to have time to respond.

                  You’re making a dogs breakfast of your smear attempts. Are you trying to get me accused of disrupting a thread? It’s obvious who’s doing that.

                  • Te Reo Putake

                    “I’ve linked to proof of campaigning on (not for) asset sales.”
                    Great, you’ve admitted in the parentheses to getting that wrong. That’s a start. Now for the evidence that Labour support your site. Put up or shut up, Pete. And given that you link whored this lie on other sites, howabout you go back to those sites and withdraw and apologise when you can’t stump up with proof.
                    The amazing thing is that you could have knocked this on the head at breakfast time just by putting up the evidence of Labour’s support or by withdrawing the false claim. Why didn’t you do that, Pete? Is it because a) you are lying, or b) you are incapable of saying ‘I got that wrong?’

                    • Or maybe I’m stringing your crap along.

                      You’ve already been proven blatantly wrong. You said:

                      United Future did not campaign on this, Pete. It never featured in their campaign literature, was not mentioned in the TV spots, and the only time Dunne touched on it was on one obscure media feature.

                      That is false, and I proved it – and you kept claiming it without even checking the proof.

                      When do you think you’ll be prepared to withdraw and apologise? Why don’t you do that?

                  • John M

                    At best the only thing you’ve proved is that UF campaigned on an issue in a way that led people to believe UF would oppose all asset sales. Even if it’s accepted that on a very narrow and literal reading of the policy what you say is correct, the fact remains that a lot of people voted for UF hoping Dunne would oppose all asset sales and be the moderating force on Key et al’s agenda.

                    Having said that, though, it doesn’t matter now who said what and when and to whom – what matters is that it’s possible most people don’t want asset sales. Given all of the circumstances, including the “misunderstanding” of Dunne’s position, the seemingly strong, albeit untested, support for putting the brakes on the current asset sales policy, we should all slow down and wait for the result of the referendum. Your view that we should “halt legislation” while waiting for that result is illogical at best and pigheadedly dangerous and sickeningly arrogant at worst. There’s nothing to lose by waiting and everything gain: if the people say sell then sell – it’ll make no difference; if the people say stop, then government has listened to the people and our assets are intact having avoided a very difficult situation to reverse. Your position assumes referenda to have no place, that we have a piece of legislation that has no purpose. Your position also assumes that people can’t change their mind. People opposed to the referendum assume that just because National campaigned on asset sales then we must stick to that path regardless of what the views of citizens really are. If you say those views are already known through the election result then why are you scared of the referendum? According to you, the result will be the same as how people voted in November last year. There are people who disagree, but instead of trying to shout those people down why don’t you just relax and wait so you can say “I told you so”? There’s a big difference between opposing asset sales and opposing citizens invoking rights provided by law. Waiting till we know the result of the referendum before proceeding with asset sales, even if the legislation allowing those sales is passed, is democratic because it allows for the potential for those rights to be meaningfully realised and does not render them illusory by ploughing on with a policy in the knowledge it’s possible there’s a significant number of people who do not want that policy. Democracy is everywhere all of the time and doesn’t just pop up on one day every three years.

                    • At best the only thing you’ve proved is that UF campaigned on an issue in a way that led people to believe UF would oppose all asset sales.

                      You obviously don’t want to look at all the facts either, or are deliberately ignoring them.

                    • felix

                      I don’t know, Pete. I read your links and (discounting anything said after the election of course) I came to exactly the same conclusion.

                      The most charitable reading of Dunne’s quotes is that his position on three particular assets was very clear and his position on all other assets was ambiguous and often unstated.

                    • What’s not clear about this?

                      This is not selling state assets. This is a proposal to sell shares of a minority nature in four energy companies and Air NZ. Provided New Zealand control is retained – the government will retain 51% – provided New Zealand control is retained in the shareholding and that no one can hold more than 15%-

                      -and provided we never move to sell Kiwibank, Radio NZ or our water resources, we would be prepared to support that policy.


                      In principle, UnitedFuture does not advocate selling state assets, but in the event National putst up its mixed ownership model for the electricity companies and Air New Zealand we would be prepared to support that, provided the maximum was 49%, with a cap of 15% on any indivudual’s holdings.

                    • Te Reo Putake

                      Indeed, Pete. Those quotes make it quite clear that UF was not campaigning on the basis of a pro-asset sales policy. To quote:
                      ” In principle, UnitedFuture does not advocate selling state assets .,.”
                      That’s hardly campaigning for asset sales, is it? Or does the word ‘principle’ confuse you?
                      Still waiting for that evidence that Labour back your site, Pete. Waiting, waiting …

                    • John M

                      …and you, Pete, don’t want to test that out by letting citizens have their say. I knew that mentioning (and I say this generously) the fact that at best Dunne and UF’s position was unclear and lost on a lot of people isn’t the point now, would be lost on you and that you’d hark back to the “he said, they said” culdesac. Why are you so scared of people exercising a right under law to test current public opinion on what you have to agree is controversial policy? You should welcome the referendum because it’s just one mechanism within our democracy among many that allows us to check we’re still on the right track. Some say the referendum shouldn’t be used to chop back how people voted, but as I’ve said, people have the right to change their mind. One way to help us find out is through the result of the referendum. If it gets a pathetic level of support then you’ll be able to say “I told you so” but why not let democracy take its course so we can find out?

                    • felix

                      Which is why I said “often unstated”, not “never stated”.

                      Look at the Rotary speech for example. He goes to great lengths to describe how committed he is to retaining a number of publicly owned assets.

                      He goes into detail about the reasons he, like other kiwis, value keeping certain things in public ownership.

                      Power companies are never mentioned. The actual sales that he supports are brushed over very lightly and all the focus is on the ‘some things should never be sold’ angle.

                      Ambiguous at best, misleading at worst.

                    • I don’t agree. He’s talking mostly about UF preferred policy, or parts of policy that UF have decided to make a point on – every party campaigns mostly on their own policies. But he does at times make it clear about the UF position on National’s MOM policy.

                      Labour didn’t do much campaigning on Green policies (except for the ones they “borrowed”).

                      I’m not sure what you expect. To campaign on all possible outcomes?

                      He has never contradicted anything he campaigned on.

                      And this has all sidetracked from the original point of the thread – that National retracted on voting rights and have accepted a 51% total ownership.

                    • The Regulatory Impact Statement on the MOM ownership change is now available.

                      This Regulatory Impact Statement has been prepared by The Treasury.

                      This RIS provides an analysis of options to ensure that the Mixed Ownership Model Bill (MOM Bill) includes economic interests in the 51% floor and 10% cap, to ensure consistency with the Confidence and Supply Agreement dated 5 December 2011 between the New Zealand National Party and United Future New Zealand (UFNZ) (the Confidence and Supply Agreement), specifically around introducing “statutory limits on the sale of public assets to no more than 49% of shareholding to private interests including limits on the extent of single entity ownership.”


                      felix (and others) should recall that voting rights versus total ownership was discussed here (exactly three months ago). That was a catalyst for this change.

                    • felix

                      “He’s talking mostly about UF preferred policy, or parts of policy that UF have decided to make a point on”

                      Agreed Pete. And that doesn’t seem to include selling power companies, not most of the time anyway. Most of the time he didn’t “make a point” of that.

                      But essentially I agree, UF did not generally make asset sales a point of their campaign.

                      “But he does at times make it clear about the UF position on National’s MOM policy.”

                      Once in an online chat that no-one saw, and once in a tv debate. And a whole bunch of other times he does the opposite by actually making it unclear. By this I mean talking a lot about not selling assets, how he’s not pro-asset sales, how kiwis love their public institutions etc.

                      None of this is anything that I would describe as campaigning on selling assets.

                    • But that’s only recorded instances, I have heard reports of him often saying it at campaign meetings, and Ohariu people’s Power accepts that he did say what he would do and didn’t change from that.

                      And there is no evidence that he said anything to the contrary nor contradicted himself after the election.

                      So what recorded proof there is supports one side of the story and nothing contradicts it.

                    • felix

                      The fact that there are only a couple of recorded instances actually reinforces the point that it wasn’t a major feature of his campaign, a point which you have already made and I have already agreed with.

                      As for supporting one side of the story, I disagree. Even in the examples you found there are very mixed messages as I’ve already outlined several times.

                      The part of the Rotary speech you quoted, for example, goes on at length about why it’s not a good idea to sell certain things and doesn’t even mention the power companies. It leaves the reader with a clear impression that Dunne wants to retain public ownership of important public assets.

                      I know that’s not the story you want him to have told, but there it is. Another version of the truth according to Peter Dunne.

                      I still essentially agree with you though, asset sales were not a central plank in his campaign and it would be wrong to say that he campaigned on selling them when so much of his verbiage on the subject was to the contrary.

              • Dr Terry

                have you still not managed to “have the last word”?

              • lprent – yes, I accept that saying “The Standard” was too general.

                Maybe you haven’t bothered to read the whole thread or the one on OM (I don’t recommend it), but it’s little more than a sustained string of unsubstantiated accusations of lying with no evidence as what I presume is an attempt to smear by repitition and threadjack. But it seems to pass moderation without any problem, yet you seem to be picking and nitpicking. Sure, I guess it was triggered, but it does appear a bit selective.

          • Pete George

            [One persons ‘smears’ are another persons facts. ]

            But when there’s no facts involved?

            [assertions of facts that we think are actionable under defamation]

            “What we’re not prepared to accept are pointless personal attacks”
            “We are intolerant of people starting or continuing flamewars where there is little discussion or debate”
            “This includes making assertions that you are unable to substantiate with some proof”
            “Finally, the moderators may put you into moderation for what they consider is bad behaviour, while they get around to having a look at your patterns of behaviour. This is often used on people who just seem to be trying to start flamewars.”

            There seems be a fair bit of tolerance of attempts at flamewars. They don’t eventuate because I don’t rise to bait, but I get a disproportionate amount of blame when I am rarely the instigator or perpetrator.

            Yes, I know “The action taken is completely up to the moderator who takes it.” Or doesn’t take it. But I think I’m still allowed to make a point.

            [lprent: None of which seems applicable. What I saw were questions. Probably objectionable to the person they were directed at. But questions aren’t pointless, nor are they usually assertions of fact, nor do they appear to be attempts to start a flamewar. Which is probably why the comment was framed that way – and for that matter why you see most statements framed as questions in the house.

            But I think I’m still allowed to make a point.

            You can make whatever point you like. However commenting about the site or calling on the moderators is an open invitation for moderators to make rulings and their own points. If you don’t want to hear them, then don’t call on us. ]

            • Pete George

              I did want to hear what moderators thought, and now I know (what one thought). Interesting.

              I suspect if I repeatedly called someone a liar, with nothing to back it up, and if I disrupted multiple threads, taking them off-topic, then rulings and points might be a tad different. But that’s your call of course. It looks like a court may make a call on another case of liar accusations.

              I find it ironic that the accusations here came about as a reaction to me openly supporting a significant Labour initiative on Super. And people with known Labour connections attack me for it.

              That shows this isn’t just a Labour blog, it’s much more varied – including a strong anti-Labour (and not-pro-Shearer) presence. There would be few if any that support Shearer as much as I do here, and few if any that get attacked as much for it.

              I’m just commenting, no ruling requested on this.

              • Te Reo Putake

                All you have to do is stop lying, Pete. You have no authority to claim support from the Labour Party for your super site. You have lied again in this comment by claiming that being called on your lies is actually a reaction to your supporting a Labour initiative. It’s not. It’s about you making things up. So, I’ll ask again, if you have anything from Labour that indicates they support your site, show us.
                But you won’t do that because you can’t. You don’t have that support. You lied. Suck it up, saddo and move on.

              • lprent

                I suspect if I repeatedly…

                Doing anything in excess tends to bore the moderators because it makes scanning the comments irritating. Eventually one of us will get annoyed with reading the same crap over and over again and look to eliminate a cause. That could simply be reading people making the same complaint about others (but is often more likely to be the complainant that gets targeted).

                Attacking politicians and political parties is merely par for the course here. Respect for any politicians isn’t particularly high around this site.

                So, for that matter, is attacking other commentators where they haven’t earned much respect for their opinions. The moderators tend not to get too bothered about it.

                It is all about HOW people attack others including political parties that usually concerns moderators. Not having a point or repeating the same point endlessly is usually a fast way to get moderator attention – after all how often can one be expected to read some meme that an idiot is simply repeating across threads and comments.

                It looks like a court may make a call on another case of liar accusations.

                We don’t care and in all likelihood neither would a court in the circumstances that you’re talking about. Most of the comments where people have either directly or indirectly called you a liar that I have vaguely looked at are simply where people have said that they disbelieve your assertion about the course of events. That is where you are stating how you think that something happened where most of your thought is on how you think someone else was thinking. Your evidence is usually a link to your own site where you say the same – again without any substantive evidence. In other words it is an opinion on both sides.

                Your basic problem (in my opinion) is that you seem to think that your judgement on such topics valued by others when clearly it is not. Your secondary problem is that you have a delusion that you understand the legal basis of such things as defamation when in reality you are merely indulging yourself in wishful thinking of how you’d like it to be.

                And surely you can defend yourself? Why would you need the moderators to do so.

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