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National’s terrible deal making

Written By: - Date published: 10:20 am, August 9th, 2015 - 114 comments
Categories: Economy, Globalisation, Hekia parata, john key, national, same old national, slippery, Steven Joyce - Tags: , , , , , , ,

National's deal making

(Graphic from Lamia)

We are well into this National Government’s third term and the weaknesses are now very clear.

John Key’s reputation as a formidable wheeler dealer deal maker is clearly mythological rather than real. And a series of deals have been completed based entirely on a prejudice that private enterprise does things better than the state.  But the reality does not match National’s ideologically blinkered view.

These deals include the following and there are multiple posts on The Standard on each one.

  • Novopay – the go live decision that has cost us $45 million was signed off by English, Joyce and Foss despite the awareness that there were multiple faults with the system at the time.
  • Tiwai Point and Rio Tinto – where a foreign multinational corporation exploited the Government’s insistence of partially privatising our power companies and was paid $30 million dollars to continue in business for a short period of time.
  • Warner Brothers – a threat to move filming overseas when clearly this would not happen resulted in $30 million tax credits, rushed legislation and some manufactured news for John Key.  Irish Bill’s analysis here is compulsory reading if you want to understand the extent of the duplicity that National engaged in.
  • Saudi sheep – where we have the payment of a failed bribe, a sheep farm in a Saudi desert where most of the lambs died, negotiation of a MOU with a foreign state where National’s behaviour has been described as duplicitous and an active attempt to avoid legal and bureaucratic oversight.
  • Trans Pacific partnership – where we are giving up our sovereignty, Pharmac’s effectiveness and opening up our Government being sued whenever it acts in the public good all for the possibility of a minuscule increase in overseas markets for milk we currently produce at a loss.
  • Sky City – where the Government has sold legislative provisions, engaged in a contractual process described as banana republic stuff without the bananas and created future increased problem gambling and misery for a convention centre with hopelessly optimistic predictions of job creation and economic activity.
  • Serco – it has become abundantly clear that the so called innovative approach does not exist and Serco’s profits depend on cutting prison officer numbers and allowing the gangs to take over.  Inmate deaths, the hiding of violent incidents because they affect the bottom line, rampant drug taking and prisoner violence appear to have become the norm.
  • Charter schools – where instead of closing a failing charter school as recommended Hekia Parata gave that school more money.

And National’s economic strategy?  It appears to be a combination of trust private enterprise, multiple dairy conversions, a cycleway (remember that?), building holiday highways, an Auckland real estate boom and precious little else.  National clearly lacks the skills to create a modern economy and a modern state.  Without heavy borrowing and the Christchurch rebuild our economy would be in tatters.

It is not only the lack of substance that is becoming increasing clear.  It is also that National’s and Key’s style in creating a media narrative that does not match reality is now being increasingly clear.  About time.

Andrea Vance said this in this morning’s Sunday Star Times:

The Government signed up to the OGP – an international initiative – two years ago. Last year it ponied up $50,000 to support the organisation. As a member it is bound to commit to “ambitious commitments to foster transparency, accountability and public participation.”

As such it is obliged to ask the public for their ideas and concerns. But its first action was to limit that feedback window to a little over three weeks – a move Transparency International labelled “insulting.”

Around the same time that Guy was delivering his Saudi speech, Key told a TV interviewer: “We’ve been way more transparent than any other Government that’s been around, I mean we’re the people who opened up disclosure in Parliament in a major way.”

Transparency in real life and political transparency are two very different things.  National is adept in proliferating information that displaces the facts or obfuscates.  The truth often comes out in the wash – as it did with the official papers on the Saudi deal – but by then it is too late.

It doesn’t matter that many of National’s claims about the Saudi deal are disproved by the documents, because the Government’s version has taken root and most people have moved on.

Hopefully now there will be increased analysis of the reality behind National’s performance.  Because if the deals described above are indications then National’s reputation as a dealmaker needs to be reviewed.  Urgently.

114 comments on “National’s terrible deal making”

  1. Kevin 1

    The National Party. The party for business, full of successful business people who know how to make deals and get New Zealands economy moving.

    Either the quality of business people here is shit, we got those who couldn’t make it running this country, or them and their supporters are delusional.

    • dukeofurl 1.1

      The guy having ministerial oversight for Novapay when it went live was Foss, previously a high flyer with Credit Suisse in Tokyo and London and Chief dealer with BNZ. A complete tosser whos ministerial career is over.

      Shades of Lotu-Iiga who was a financial wizz

    • lprent 1.2


      As far as I can see National is the home of crony business, the ones who use government cover to extract rentier money from taxpayers and consumers.

      The list above is just the tip of typical National ripoffs

    • ropata 1.3

      National ™ selling off NZ ™ at cut rates! One time only! The party of get rich quick schemes and dodgy deals. Promoting a fake Ponzi economy based on an asset bubble and an earthquake. The real economy is in tatters.

    • lprent 1.4

      …the quality of business people here is shit…

      That is well known and has been quite apparent for decades, ever since we started doing serious exporting outside the raw materials areas. Kiwi business got creamed by almost every overseas market they went into. Eventually it bifurcated into the local business people and the international ones – with quite different skill levels.

      Ask anyone who is involved in a export business and directly exposed to international competition what they think of local NZ business people of the type who usually support National (and Stephen Joyce is a good example). They will generally call most of that kind of “successful business people” as crony capitalists and pretty damn incompetent business people. Essentially con-artists thriving off contacts rather than competition and innovation.

      You will note that there isn’t a single exporter in National’s motley crew of failures? That is because exporters don’t bother having lucrative government contacts to feed them taxpayer resources. So they don’t consider it to be that important….

      • rhinocrates 1.4.1

        Yes, Joyce is a perfect example of someone with talent inversely proportional to his sense of entitlement.

        It makes sense if you see that many parties are essentially capital-stripping agencies with the USP that they can get political power and write legislation to increase their sponsors’ revenue flow. MPs are routinely rewarded after work at the legislative coalface with lucrative board positions. Key’s probably hoping for something senior in the IMF or World Bank and just have a look at Schroeder’s and Blair’s post-parliamentary careers.

        Under those terms, National does exactly what it’s supposed to do.

  2. Tricledrown 2

    Dirty Deals Done Dirt Cheap.Not
    Taxpayers money used for purely political purposes.
    Corrupt Gifting.

  3. Ad 3

    So many deals, so much damage.

    And not an ounce of connecting strategy.

    • mickysavage 3.1

      Yep just a series of discrete decisions some reflecting ideology, some for political advantage, some in response to backroom pressure, and I am struggling to see any benefit in any of them.

      • ropata 3.1.1

        Nat MPs get their egos stroked when big business comes a-courting.
        They are wanna-be playaz and imagine themselves as titans of capitalism.

    • keyman 3.2

      when you think about David parkers interconnecting policy platform so well thought out and detailed compared to national there no comparison national are bunch of swindlers conman basically thieves

  4. Tracey 4

    don’t forget the extension of the govt guarantee to SCF against Treasury advice AND the subsequent payment of 20m to foreign investors in SFC NOT covered by the guarantee.

  5. BLiP 5

    As National Ltd™’s donors sing at their “Cabinet Club” get-togethers . . .

    ♫ ♪ The Beehive, The Beehive, where everyone gets a bargain ♪ ♫

  6. and little tried to really smash into the gnatkey bullshit on q & a but didn’t get any traction at all despite repetition – try plan x labour

    • Skinny 6.1

      Really? I thought O Sullivan summed up his performance pretty well…which was a positive review. The issue remains the popularity of Key, the teflon is wearing as the clock ticks. Cheap shot Marty.

      You really need to get over the poor decision ‘the one trick pony Hone’ made joining up with Dotcom. If Mana had gone alone i’m sure the very capable Annette Sykes and indeed himself would have been MP’s today. He will never win back TTT and you know it. Dismissing Bradford raising the red flag showed the guy is a loose cannon. Little wonder no other political party wanted to work with Mana.

      • marty mars 6.1.1

        ffs you bring everything back to your own obsession – boring puffed up dickhead aren’t you.

        btw my comment wasn’t criticism of little, you yacht

        • Skinny

          “try plan x labour” umm actually clown your the one obsessing and being repetitive ‘Xenophobia’ lol you don’t fool anyone cobbah!

          • marty mars

            lol that is NOT what I meant at all dim – but good to know which way you slide clyde – you yacht I laugh at you – ha ha ha…

            what I did mean was that the other letters have all been tried and ‘x’ was used to show the numerous other ‘plans’ that haven’t worked

  7. tracey 7

    Remember when the high dollar was the cross we had to bear for having such a good economy? Does the opposite apply?

    7 April 2015

    “The fact that the Kiwi dollar has been nudging parity with Australia’s currency is evidence New Zealand’s economy is moving along at a better clip, Prime Minister John Key says.

    The kiwi was trading near parity and could have broken through $A1 if the Australian Reserve Bank cut its cash rate, as expected.

    But when the RBA kept the rate at 2.25 per cent on Tuesday afternoon, the kiwi tumbled to 98.15 Australian cents from 99.11 cents, having traded as high at a record 99.78 cents on Monday.

    “I think it’s a sign of strength in the New Zealand economy,” Mr Key told reporters in Christchurch, before the RBA announcement.

    “Currency is a good barometer of economic events, and the evidence is that we’re performing at a better clip than Australia.””

    • NZJester 7.1

      Australia is feeling a big bump in the road right now with its mining economy. The only reason our dollar was catching up to theirs was due to a value decrease in their dollar not a value increase in ours.

  8. BM 8

    If National is so poor, why are they still polling around the same levels as what they were in 2008.?

    Why do people trust National more than Labour?

    • tracey 8.1

      Don’t underestimate the concerted strategy to dupe the people… despite the right pretending the media is a left wing bastion, the intelligent ones know that when you have the media where you want it you control the message. I often think that Slater must have some stuff, not just on journos, but the editors too. Roughan and Armstrong’s most recent examples are bizarre but MUST be agreed to y the editor/s

      • BM 8.1.1

        Dupe the people,aye

        I think the major issue is that the Labour is so condescending and know it all.

        Telling the people you know better = electoral failure and a big fuck you.

        • mickysavage

          So what do you think about these deals BM? And what about the oodles of money paid out because of the collapse of South Canterbury Finance?

          • tracey

            He’s proving my point MS

          • BM

            South Canterbury finance was a hospital pass.

            • mickysavage

              Sure it was. Remind me who entered it into the Deposit Guarantee Scheme again?

              • tracey

                Well, Labour put it in the scheme, I am not sure anyone was refused BUT in 2010 it was granted an extension, against Treasury advice, by Bill English, that well known Labour Party Minister

                • mickysavage

                  I believe that SCF was entered into the scheme on November 19, 2008. Labour was voted out on November 8 …

                    • mickysavage

                      So you must be really miffed at National’s decision to continue with the scheme.

                      And how about this?

                      “Thursday, 1 April 2010, 5:31 pm
                      Press Release: South Canterbury Finance
                      1 April 2010

                      Crown approves South Canterbury Finance for Extended Retail Deposit Guarantee Scheme
                      South Canterbury Finance Limited has today been approved to participate in the Crown’s Extended Retail Deposit Guarantee Scheme.
                      The scheme will provide all eligible investors with the benefit of the Crown guarantee until 31 December 2011.
                      Welcoming the Crown’s decision, South Canterbury Finance Chairman Allan Hubbard says a major milestone has been achieved.”

                      SCF failed August 31, 2010. Of course it was all Labour’s fault.

                    • BM

                      What do you think would have happen if SCF was cut from the scheme?

                      Economy was rather fragile, National rock and a hard place.

                      Like Novopay, South Canterbury finance was a hospital pass.

                    • mickysavage []

                      But National put SCF into the scheme, continued the scheme, put SCF back into the scheme and clearly did not monitor the situation properly.

                      Honest you are reinforcing Vance’s comments about Key and how “National is adept in proliferating information that displaces the facts or obfuscates. The truth often comes out in the wash – as it did with the official papers on the Saudi deal – but by then it is too late.”

                    • tracey

                      “What do you think would have happen if SCF was cut from the scheme?”

                      What happened to those not given an extension BM? What about paying $20m to investors NOT part of the scheme?

                      Why couldn’t National delay Novopay until it was ready? Just like it didnt have to take the expensive BMW’s it lied and said it was bound to (right in a recession) by Labour.

                      They say “no” to lots of things but not these…

                      when foreign investors, financiers or private enterprise, tehy don’t sa no but to

                      disabled ( remember the change to HR legislation to trump the Courts so family cant get paid to care for disabled relatives
                      no to lunches in schools

                      and so on…

                    • tracey

                      “Honest you are reinforcing Vance’s comments about Key and how “National is adept in proliferating information that displaces the facts or obfuscates. The truth often comes out in the wash – as it did with the official papers on the Saudi deal – but by then it is too late.”


                    • Draco T Bastard

                      What do you think would have happen if SCF was cut from the scheme?

                      I suspect that a few people would have found out that social mobility is a two way street and that our economy and society would actually have been better for it.

                  • tracey

                    application was still part of Labour’s scheme and criteria

                    • dv

                      AND there is the whole murk around the scales corp that Hubbard ‘gave’ to the receivers.
                      That was then sold to a neighbour of Keys, who then flicked it on for a profit of about 50 million!!!

                    • tracey


            • tracey

              proving my point. AGAIN.

              Bill English extended the guarantee to SCF. He did it against the advice of Treasury. So who threw him the pass? Honest John?

              “Institutions Approved for the Extended Retail Deposit Guarantee Scheme

              The government announced on 25 August 2009 that it will extend the Retail Deposit Guarantee Scheme to 31 December 2011 and change some of its terms and conditions. The current scheme ends on 12 October 2010. See Extension after 12 October 2010 for the list of institutions approved, so far, for the extended Retail Deposit Guarantee Scheme.”


              • BM

                What do you think would have happen if SCF was cut from the scheme?

                • tracey

                  “What do you think would have happen if SCF was cut from the scheme?”

                  What happened to those not given an extension BM? What about paying $20m to investors NOT part of the scheme?

                  Why couldn’t National delay Novopay until it was ready? Just like it didnt have to take the expensive BMW’s it lied and said it was bound to (right in a recession) by Labour.

                  They say “no” to lots of things but not these…

                  when foreign investors, financiers or private enterprise, tehy don’t sa no but to

                  disabled ( remember the change to HR legislation to trump the Courts so family cant get paid to care for disabled relatives
                  no to lunches in schools

                  and so on…

                • Jones

                  It would’ve gone under… precisely what should happen in a properly functioning capitalist system.

                  • BM

                    And dragging the economy down with it.

                    All that dairy farm financing.

                    Having said that, I’d have preferred there was no guarantee scheme, business is a risk, you roll the dice and you either win or lose.

                    • Colonial Rawshark

                      And dragging the economy down with it.

                      All that dairy farm financing.


                      There was a lot of large investor misbehaviour surrounding the last weeks of SCF.

                      Pouring money on big time speculators looking to make a quick buck because they got a tip the government was going to pay out 100 cents on the dollar, isn’t good for the economy.

                • Descendant Of Sssmith

                  Well lots of people who chased high returns would have understood what high returns equals greater risk actually means.

                  What particularly interests me is who the people were investing big chunks of money into what was clearly a failed company in the three wees or so prior to the scheme being bailed out and why the interest was paid out.

                  I’ve heard about quite significant sums of money being put in there and it seems illogical that people would be investing large sums there unless they had a pretty good inkling about what was going to happen.

                  It should be a matter of public record as to who got paid out with tax payers money.

        • tracey

          exactly when have they recently displayed that BM? You know you are partially proving my point because what you just wrote is what Nats and their supporters, like Henry and Hosking and PLunkett state on their various media outlets, not what Labour is stating.

          IF being condescending and we know best was fatal, National could not be polling 49%.


          tries hard but could do better.

        • les

          alot in your comment…intellectual superiority real or imagined is treated with disdain by the voters.The most common refrain I’ve heard …’National may not be that great…BUT..what was the alternative’!

      • Charles 8.1.2

        I don’t think it’s only Slater, specifically. Trying to remember what the issue was…. yeah it was the Amanda Bailey vs. NZ Herald cover-up thing… the war of words and butt-covering between editors and management, direct links between Beehive/Nats/politicians and Journalists, that was being unintentionally exposed after Glucina got pushed backwards onto the rat trap. All of a sudden the public began to see how much of a joke the NZ Herald is as a group of “objective” journalists, then once the journalists realised that people where looking at them strange, they shut up and changed the subject. haha

        • tracey

          I note that the heraldhas replaced Glucina with a chap who now writes the fluff pieces on the Key Family. max being most recent with his

          I dont want to make my way on my dad’s name” while appearing in an article becauseof his dad’s name… and today there is his girlfriend’s tilt at Miss Auckland making the news…

    • weka 8.2

      IMO, leaving aside the non-vote issue, it’s because Labour don’t look competent to run the country. So maybe it’s a case of the lesser of two evils.

      Plus, what tracey said.

      • tracey 8.2.1

        Apparently Nats were trusted to become govt in 2008 because of their self proclaimed non nanny state ness and superior economic management skills. BOTH have been proven false and yet…

      • BM 8.2.2

        More along the lines of, they couldn’t sell shit to a dung beetle.

      • ropata 8.2.3

        John Key won the Rugby World Cup and he drinks beer and he does funny shit.
        The non political PM.

        • tracey

          but he lost the America’s cup… and the cricket world cup…

          • Lanthanide

            He’s the captain in chief of the all blacks, not yachts or bat-ball.

            • ropata

              Yes, therefore Captain Key is competent to run the country.
              Not the left parties with boring policy documents and no rock star glitz.

      • Clemgeopin 8.2.4

        “IMO, leaving aside the non-vote issue, it’s because Labour don’t look competent to run the country

        Why would you make such an outrageous and unfair statement? Who would you rather run the country?

        • weka

          Go back and read what I actually said Clem (and while you are there, get over your blindspot where you think everything is a deathly criticism of Labour). I didn’t say Labour weren’t competent to run the country, I said they’re perceived as not being competent and that’s why some people don’t vote for them. It’s part of the lprent theory of Labour’s failure to win elections. It took me a while to agree with that, because it’s not like if Labour took over the country would fall over, but the point is that there is a chunk of the population who think like this, who cast their vote not on the politics alone (or at all), but on perceived competency.

          • Clemgeopin

            ” I didn’t say Labour weren’t competent to run the country, I said they’re perceived as not being competent “

            You said that? Really? OK then! May be my computer screen does not display some of the letters you press on your computer key board. Strange that!

            • weka

              fuck off Clem, I can’t be dealing with disingenuous shit today. Nor bad faith debate.

              • Clemgeopin

                What do you mean? Go read your previous comment again. Interesting that you abuse me instead of acknowledging the discrepancy between what you actually wrote and what you are claiming you wrote.

                • weka

                  Yeah, because I don’t know what I meant and have since changed my mind 🙄 Grow up.

                  BM: Why do people trust National more than Labour?

                  Weka: IMO, leaving aside the non-vote issue, it’s because Labour don’t look competent to run the country. So maybe it’s a case of the lesser of two evils.

                  You can take that any way you want. I’m the only one that can say for certain what I meant. If I wanted to say that Labour aren’t competent to run the country I’m quite capable of saying that. But I didn’t.

                  I gave you the benefit of the doubt and responded with an explanation of what I meant. You’ve just come back with more bullshit. Disingenuous and bad faith. Which is mostly what you come down to when you realise that your beliefs don’t stand up to scrutiny.

                  • Clemgeopin

                    You are wrong. Mine was a genuine question. Not bullshit, not disingenuous nor bad faith.

                    • weka

                      What question? This one?

                      You said that? Really? OK then! May be my computer screen does not display some of the letters you press on your computer key board. Strange that!

                      Looks rhetorical to me, and sarcastic. If I was wrong, why not just point it out like I did with you? And why selectively quote when I went to the trouble of explaining in detail what I meant? It was like you didn’t even take in what I said.

                    • Clemgeopin

                      No, not that one. That one was being sarcastic to show that what you actually wrote and what you claimed you wrote were contradictory.

                      My genuine question, (Not bullshit, not disingenuous nor bad faith) was my response to your following statement:

                      “IMO, leaving aside the non-vote issue, it’s because Labour don’t look competent to run the country’

                      to which I wrote,

                      ‘Why would you make such an outrageous and unfair statement? Who would you rather run the country?’

                      (which you claimed you didn’t write that! and following which made personal unfair derogatory comments about me instead)

                      Perhaps you meant something else in your original statement but didn’t actually write it. May be you left our the phrase ‘Labour is percieved to be’. Anyway, it is better to drop this as we are holding quite different views.

    • jackp 8.3

      You trust the polls? tV3- CEO is friends with Key. TV1- government owned. Herald- Pro Key, read armstrong’s and O’sullivan’s articles. Stuff, always has supported Key and National. The only one I trust is the Roy Morgan poll. The rest are corrupt and will mislead the public. That’s why the MSM puts so much emphasis on the them. Your also going to see more written about Winston Peters’s retirement plans because Winston is a threat to National. They’ve already started… tell a lie often enough it will become true. The public is too naive to figure this out hence, they are being manipulated yet their egos misleads them by thinking they have come up to their own conclusion.

    • Thom Pietersen 8.4

      Because National have told us we are on the edge “of something great” – that was a PR winner, sad as it is. And, even dumbarses recognise a house of cards and lay a near time bet.

      Some of my family down south believe we are going to to the Monaco of the South Pacific.. hahahahahaha… ffs!

      Trust? No way. Scared of been brought down to reality? Yes.

      Oh, and left wing bloody thought police – easy to hate that…

  9. What, no comments about Cullen buying the rail system back from Toll yet? Maybe Nat supporters don’t look at blogs on Sundays.

    • Skinny 9.1

      The Nats are working very hard at the next asset sale after Housing & Solid Energy. By starving our Railway of adequate funding. Line by line privatisation is about to happen I’m predicting after seeing some recent positioning.

      • tc 9.1.1

        Yes rail is an incredibly juicy asset and they know it so I’d expect it to be put on the block in a final flurry of flog offs before honest John slings his hook.

        The groundwork has already been laid by Blinglish who will front this all the way and be the bad cop as the milk economy tanks leaving good keystone cop out there with the assuring salestone.

        • Skinny

          It is incredible the gullibility of Kiwi’s who have been hoodwinked by shyster John Key. Sucked into the self made rich man will do us good narrative.

          It is a continuation from the Power assets sales with the State Housing sell off. Something these tricky charlatans in power had the gawl to say during last years election, “there would be not further selling our Assets”.

          Yesterday’s poll showed huge numbers opposed to State Houses being sold, similarly to our power assets. The Nact just keep giving the middle finger and forging ahead anyway. Of course us on the left have always known this is their modus operandi.

          Let’s get the numbers out in the 2_big rally’s coming up next week. Meat workers on parliament and anti TPPA. We need to wind up farmers to protest against the inaction from the Tory Government.

      • Clemgeopin 9.1.2

        Kiwi bank and ACC will be their other prime targets for sale.

        • Gangnam Style

          Destroying NZPost too, with this 3 day mail “service”, NZPost should be looking at ways to offer new services not cut down delivery opening the door wider for DX & other private providers.

  10. Dv 10

    South Canterbury Finance

  11. BLiP 11

    As with many of National Ltd™’s deals which fall over, its not often the deal itself which is the problem as much as it is the response by National Ltd™ to having been caught out. As Andrea Vance puts it ” . . . National is adept in proliferating information that displaces the facts or obfuscates . . . “. In other words, once there is an inkling that “something is up with that so-and-so deal”, the immediate instinctual response from National Ltd™ is to initiate a spontaneous blizzard of bullshit around the entire affair.

    There’s no better example of this strategy than in the case of John Key getting played by SkyCity. Not counting the rest of the National Ltd™ Cabinet, just John Key told these lies during that skirmish:

    the Sky City deal will provide 1000 construction jobs and 800 casino jobs

    all five bidders for the convention centre were treated equally

    my office has had no correspondence, no discussions, no involvement with the Sky City deal

    I did not mislead the House (8)

    I can’t remember what was discussed at my meeting with the SkyCity Chief Executive on 14 May 2009

    I have no record of the 12 November 2009 email from Treasury advising that the SkyCity deal was dodgy and needed to be referred to the Auditor General

    there was nothing improper about the Sky City deal

    SkyCity will only get “a few more” pokie machines at the margins

    any changes to gambling regulations will be subject to a full public submission process

    Sky City has approached TVNZ about the purchase/use of government-owned land

    I did not mislead the House (9)

    this government has been very transparent about all its dealings with SkyCity

    I did not mislead the House (10)

    the Auditor General has fully vindicated National over the Sky City deal

    I did not mislead the House (11)

    the Deputy Auditor General supports the view that there was nothing inappropriate about the Sky City deal

    I did not mislead the House (12)

    I did not breach the confidentiality of the Auditor General’s Report into the Sky City deal

    the Labour Government did exactly the same sort of deal back in 2001

    Labour has promised to not revoke the Sky City legislation

    the construction of the new SkyCity convention centre will not cost taxpayers or ratepayers a cent with SkyCity meeting the full project costs in return for some concessions from the Government

    The only other National Ltd™ “deal” which attracted such a level of mendacity was when John Key “did the deal” to employ Ian Fletcher.

    Not surprisingly, John Key has learned to keep his distance so isn’t directly implicated in this latest National Ltd™ enterprise. But guess who is? Yep, The Speaker.

    I call for an audit investigating all The Speaker’s decisions with regard to Questions which addressed this issue.

    • tracey 11.1


      It was labour’s fault
      it was a hospital pass
      Labour is as bad

      • David H 11.1.1

        Sounds like Key. all, Bullshit Man.

      • ropata 11.1.2

        Mumblemumble fiscally neutral brighter future
        Somethingsomething economic activity boost GDP
        Blahblah tourism hobbits … look over there, a new flag!

    • David H 11.2

      Cyclops carter is as culpable as Key in all this, he is the one who drones “The Question has been addressed” on and on ad infinitum. And when Key pisses off back to Hawaii who’ll carry the can for all the corrupt things the Nats are guilty of. Where’s the SFO when you want them?

      • BLiP 11.2.1

        John Carter must have known than the National Ltd™ government was misleading Parliament about this issue. Even worse, The Speaker, IMHO, facilitated the misleading of Parliament.

    • James Last 11.3

      I understand the need for you to continue your narrative that the National Government is somehow a poor deal maker, and it fits the image of the party you are attempting to portray (it doesn’t seem to be working with the public, but I understand the Standard pretty much preaches to the converted).

      I can’t be bothered arguing with all of the so-called ‘lies’ you claim John Key has told. But in a couple of instances it’s you who’s telling porkies:

      1 The NZICC project will certainly, from everything I’ve read and heard, create 1000 construction jobs. I don’t believe anyone has ever claimed it will create a single casino job, however. You might be referring to the 800 jobs in the convention centre that will be created once the centre opens.

      2 Changes to the gaming regulations were indeed subject to a full public submission process. Unless you don’t consider a select committee to be an open process?

      3 Labour HAS said that, once the first sod has been turned and the construction is underway, it would not repeal the legislation UNLESS Sky City reneged on its obligations under the deal.

      4 Unless I’ve missed something, Sky City is on the hook for the full costs of the international convention centre and taxpayers are not paying a cent.

      As I say, I know it fits your narrative to argue otherwise, but this sounds like a pretty good deal for the taxpayer to me.

  12. Stuart Munro 12

    TPPA next – the mother of all lousy deals.

    • Smilin 12.1

      Just another bunch of right wing protectionist looking after their interest in NZ callin themselves the govt , nothing to do with the actual bulk of voters who got conned into the BS
      So that those with their pseudo govt can adjust the game in their favour by making deals with these multinationals so that the transition under TPPA and the ANNIHILATION of Democracy will be complete
      Totalitarian agreements Inc could be the new name for New Zealand to go with their Swastika flag or any other you care to use

  13. Pat 13

    Key and the Nats may still be high in the polls and all the lies and dodgy deals havnt and wont change that I believe….those that care already know and vote accordingly and those that support the Nats either dont want to know or dont care (the rest have opted out)….but none of this matters as the Nats lack of an economic strategy (ability) has come back to bite them on the arse and they will be rolled at the next election for the age old reason….its the economy stupid.

    • keyman 13.1

      it will be the economy and andrew said yesterday we dont what books will look like
      we have an idea COOKED looted

  14. Gangnam Style 14

    Warner Bros, Peter Jackson, them were some dirty sneaky deals.

  15. Charles 15

    No one between the ages of 40-50 should be able to swallow the “Labour did it too” line for anything. Those people know that when you said that as a defence at primary school, the teacher punished you worse.

  16. Rosemary McDonald 16

    @ Tracey re: “disabled ( remember the change to HR legislation to trump the Courts so family cant get paid to care for disabled relatives”

    Not quite accurate…but great you mentioned this.

    It was a bullshit piece of legislative work, justified with bullshit stats and really dodgy costings. Full ramifications yet to be felt, but the big winners appear to be the companies with contracts with government. Bells ringing yet?

    The losers? Disabled people and their families…pushed so far into the margins we may never, ever , feel accepted by mainstream again.

    Again, thanks for the mention.

    • tracey 16.1

      No probs. Rosemary I get the details confused between the family as carers case and the caring overnight case… All I know is both showed how little this Government cares about the vulnerable in NZ.

      Have bookmarked this site

  17. Rosemary McDonald 17

    “Have bookmarked this site

    Hmmm… in the twisted tortured world of Government Funded organisations, and especially one such as the above who supplement their income by running advertising in their glossy magazine, conflict of interest abounds.

    Some of this is the threat of having GF withdrawn when advocacy actually happens and some of it is (I suspect) fear of losing valuable advertising revenue if seen to be supporting a cause that could see your advertisers income from government contracts reduced.

    It is a strange and confusing world we subsist in.

    One where successive governments have exploited the innate self interest and and egos.

    I once suggested to Carers NZ that they reject government funding and call for $10 subs from the over 400,000 carers they purport to advocate for…ditch the glossy mag and put out a newsprint mailout.

    Went down like a cup of cold sick.

  18. NZJester 18

    I think Nationals poor governance extends to more than just their bad deal making. They cut off some of the governments main streams of money set up by Labour all for ideological reasons. First they cut taxes for the rich and used borrowed money to be able to afford it. Then for a quick buck to cover other promises they made they partly sold off assets retuning good payout to the NZ Tax payer. They used the fact Labour had paid off our international debt to fund their ideology without increasing taxes to pay for it by borrowing us heavily back into debt again. They then increased taxes to the poor to pay for the interest by upping G.S.T. and claiming it was not a tax increase even though the T stands for tax in G.S.T.
    Those making money from the National borrow heavy policy are paying little toward servicing that debt, while the average struggling worker who are not benefiting from the policies are the main ones servicing that debt.

    • David H 18.1

      And the Biggie of not contributing to the Super fund is nothing but incompetence. Seeing as they don’t want to do anything about the Superannuation costs, that are going to skyrocket. But then again the Nats don’t care as it’s way down the track. Yeah right.

    • Draco T Bastard 18.2

      They then increased taxes to the poor to pay for the interest by upping G.S.T. and claiming it was not a tax increase even though the T stands for tax in G.S.T.

      The tax switch that they did was solely for the purpose of dropping taxation on the rich and sticking it upon the poor. But then, that’s the whole purpose of GST anyway and it’s a main contributor to the ever increasing inequality in NZ and around the world. We need to go back to the way we had it in Muldoons times where high incomes got taxed so much that it wasn’t worth having them. That is how it should be because we cannot afford the rich.

  19. hoom 19

    One way of looking at it is Terrible Deal Making.
    Another way of looking at it is Banana Republic Nepotism.
    Yet another way of looking at it is Bloody Marvelous (if you’re recieving the deal).

  20. keyman 20

    this what is happens when you hand power to crooks

  21. Keith 21

    But the patch up job when things turn to shit is always the same!

    1) Lie (THE absolute number 1 go to solution)
    2) Don’t do any interview that is not run by a National Party man, Hosking, Henry, Gower or friendlies like Garner etc.
    3) Hide overseas where there are “no phones”.
    4) Do not respond to OIA requests
    5) If you are forced to release material redact screeds of irrelevant data if only so the lie can remain hidden and buy a bit more time.
    6) Talk about the flag, rugby, Prince William, being relaxed about everything.
    7) Call on help from friends of National such as the Heralds Armstrong, Roughan, Glucina and or some matey bank economist to throw in phrases like “Rock Star” etc
    8) Start a smear campaign if there is enough time between this and the last fuck up.

  22. Alpha Z 22

    A better trade deal………

    @LI_politico @FoxyLustyGrover The best Trade Deal is to trade Key for Ecuadorian bananas; then get a new PM we could all be comfortable with— Chris Marshall (@64by4) August 8, 2015

    @64by4 @LI_politico I too would be more comfortable with an Ecuadorian Banana up the jacksie than I am with Key as PM.— Foxy *Quaxing* (@FoxyLustyGrover) August 8, 2015

  23. Smilin 23

    Sky casino = Destitution for the poor, a playground for the rich, and business as usual for criminals

  24. Clemgeopin 24

    This unenlightened and stupid pro rich crap government even killed the Adult Community Education Night Classes! That ALONE should have been enough to have them un-reelected, in my opinion!

  25. Save NZ 25

    Great article – keep them coming!

  26. Colonial Rawshark 26

    It seems to me that National are absolutely consistent and reliable in serving the capitalist classes in society that are its major stakeholders.

  27. Missi6 27

    Where is it written in stone that we/NZ have to tolerate this bullshit government guys – seriously?!!


    We’re Sovereign, we’re free and we need to pull our heads out of our arses and wake up to the fact that there are millions of people in the World today who don’t have these privileges – they’re too busy being oppressed and abused, or are just trying to stay alive!

    We have the Sovereignty and the Freewill power available to us to confront the corruption within our government NZ, and their bullshit disregard of the New Zealand People, and OUR RIGHT TO BE HEARD …

    C’mon guys – it’s time to stop bitching about these clowns who are running our nation/our people into the ground, whilst no doubt profiting from it in the process, and TO ACT!

    Look at Iceland – they didn’t stand around bitching and whining. They know what’s going on, and they equipped themselves with the knowledge to deal with it – effectively! … Time to stop fcking around, and to drop the hammer on John Key and his Natpack in the Beehive … if Key’s going to ignore NZ’s stance on asset sales, anti-GMO’s, anti-TPPA, anti-State Housing and Power asset sales, anti-flag-change stances etc. etc., then it’s time that NZ did the same, and said “Yeah-Nah to any more of this excuses, lies and corruption bullshit, because we all know that this is what’s going on in our government today, right? … think about it people ….

    We’re not important – c’mon Kiwis, New Zealand! How many lies do we have to listen to, and how many times do we need to see our government raise it’s middle finger to the Will of The People, and our national interests before we acknowledge that our government doesn’t give a fck about the wellbeing of the people, and it doesn’t give a fck about the nation, it’s resources, our lands, waters, oceans, or the life that resides there!!!

    OUR GOVERNMENT DOESN’T GIVE A FCK … They’re focus is self, profit and fulfilling the wills and intent of someone else altogether, not NZ …

    There are parasites in NZ’s Beehive, and it’s time for Kiwis to grab the Monsanto Roundup and 1080, and start heading to Parliament! NZ needs a change in Government, and The People have the power to Self-Determine and to Act if we will it …

    We have the Freewill and Self-Determination guys, so let’s stop Consenting to this rubbish Key government running rough-shod over OUR NATION, our people and doing whatever they want regardless of majority opinion …

    Look at Key with this flag-change referendum bullshit NZ – this is John Key’s attempt to invalidate our Treaty/Constitution for Corporate takeover – NZ is a Corporation you know, and yes, John Key’s a bullshit Cunt!! Yes, seriously – he’s a self-indulgent Corporate sellout, who is running our economy into the ground, giving his party members the mandate to undermine and profit from corrupt practices serving self-interest … Judith Collins participating in the illegal sale of millions of dollars worth of swamp Kauri to China, despite dogged work by the Northland Environmental Protection Group and others to highlight ongoing breaches of the law… Kauri logs that have been preserved for tens of thousands of years are being sold offshore by the shipload. These irreplaceable treasures are going mostly to China in a black gold rush.

    No other country in the world has anything like New Zealand’s Kauri to offer. Northland conservationists say the logs are being illegally exported under the guise of carvings and the Government is doing nothing about it. Labour’s spokesperson for conservation, Ruth Dyson, said the Government should ban the export of kauri full-stop.

    “It has been raised on several occasions, it’s been dismissed previously, I think now that it’s been picked up so strongly in the media the Government won’t be able to ignore it.”

    She said it did not matter whether the kauri was sold as carvings or not – it was time for exports to stop… “It’s rape and pillage on a grand scale,” says Dr John Allen, a geologist and member of the Northland Environmental Protection Society … “In the yard at the moment there’s probably about $1 million worth of wood stock sitting here ready for processing.

    … Then there is the issue of New Zealand resources, like water, and again there is Judith Collins, bottling and selling NZ water to China via Oravida – and our Prime Minister and senior Cabinet ministers in closed-door discussions with iwi leaders about water rights!!

    In our regions, there’s growing demand for water, with more intensive farming, changing weather patterns and overseas demand for our superior drinking water. Do New Zealanders want NZ water being bottled and shipped to China – really, because on top of water restrictions over dry summers, Chinese-owned bottling plants are about to send ships full of Hawke’s Bay water to China, and we haven’t even been consulted, let alone asked!

    John Key and National Party corruption are taking and selling OUR NATION to foreign/Chinese and corporate interests – NZ’s kauri, NZ’s water, NZ’s land, NZ’s houses/property without any consultation with the people of the nation … WTF is our government doing NZ?!!!

    People need to read through the following linked material at least once in their lives, to start waking up to and comprehending Corruption’s intent – yes, like our present NZ government – and what is, and has been taking place, and what is at stake. Get informed and think for yourself guys – don’t just accept whatever the establishment propaganda and controlled media tell you, because we’re told nothing of any true relevance via todays media … please seek your own sources of news/updates and information, and talk to each other …

    A Sovereign Collective ought to write and present a Declaration of Non-Consent to government, because our present government needs to be shut down and a new system created to serve New Zealanders!

    “Esoterics – The Supernatural” you say? … Yup – this is how Corruption/evil operates in order to take control of the World, and yep Global Domination is a long process. It may be successful if Corruption can keep Humanity ignorant to what’s really at play here, and right now 99% of Humanity don’t have a clue about a quarter of what’s really going on, so …



  28. Rakuraku 28

    The Tories are nothing but a bunch of asset strippers, driving this country into the ground, they don’t have the ability to build up assets and industries as our forebears did, both left and right wing parties.

    Today the game is about borrowing up against our childrens future, and stripping the guts out of State Assets for the benefit of the Tory elite.

    The average NZer does not count, it is the top 1% and the mates that count, however the majority of the NZ population think Hone Key is the best thing since sliced bread and wish they were like him with his celebrity status.

  29. philj 29

    Govt Business faux pas? Hmmm…. Solid Energy buying into Pike River? Was the Government anywhere to be seen here … Perhaps you could explain to me why Solid Energy bought it !!! Why would you ???

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  • Further measures to support businesses
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  • Govt’s COVID plan, economic strength recognised
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  • Funding certainty for sports through COVID-19
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  • Susan Thomas the new Chief High Court Judge
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  • Advance payments to support contractors
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  • State of National Emergency extended
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  • Government supports Air NZ freight flights
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  • Tariff concessions on COVID-19 related products
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  • Clarification of modification to wage subsidy scheme
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  • Face masks flowing to DHBs
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  • COVID-19: Further steps to protect New Zealanders’ jobs
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  • Tax relief for Mycoplasma Bovis farmers
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  • $27 million for NGOs and community groups to continue providing essential services
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    2 weeks ago
  • Statement on guilty plea of March 15 terrorist
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  • COVID-19 updates
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  • Police numbers break through 10,000 mark
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    2 weeks ago
  • Urgent tax measures for economic recovery
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  • Further support for farmers and growers as drought persists
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    2 weeks ago
  • COVID-19: Temporary changes to Education Act
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    2 weeks ago
  • Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar join NZ and Singapore in committing to keeping supply a...
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    2 weeks ago
  • COVID-19: Rent increase freeze and more protection for tenants
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    2 weeks ago
  • Working together to protect businesses and workers
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  • State of National Emergency declared to fight COVID-19
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  • Prime Minister’s statement on State of National Emergency and Epidemic Notice
    Mr Speaker I wish to make a Ministerial Statement under Standing Order 347 in relation to the recent declaration of a State of National Emergency. Having considered the advice of the Director Civil Defence Emergency Management, the Minister of Civil Defence declared a State of National Emergency for the whole of ...
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    2 weeks ago