No smoking gun but plenty of sunlight from Bridges tape

Written By: - Date published: 3:32 pm, October 18th, 2018 - 207 comments
Categories: Abuse of power, Dirty Politics, electoral commission, national, Politics, Simon Bridges - Tags: , , ,

Rogue National Party MP Jami-Lee Ross’s recording of Simon Bridges has been widely characterised in the media as “no smoking gun”, but it sure as hell shines sunlight on myriad issues, especially the Chinese-National Party relationship.

What comes out is:
• Corruption within the National Party is routine
• Influence in the National Party is for sale to those with money
• China’s use of “soft power” is extensive and expanding
• Bridges and Ross are casually racist, like many in the National Party
• The National Party cynically manipulates different Asian communities for its own purposes
• The National Party routinely attempts to circumvent the law regarding party donations
• Bridges was happy to lie to National Party president Peter Goodfellow regarding the $100,000 donation of Chinese businessman Zhang Yikun
• Bridges wants rid of several dead wood National Party MPs, not counting the obvious named candidates Chris Finlayson, David Carter, and Nicky Wagner
• National list MP Maureen Pugh now has a profile but may wish she didn’t, given her leader classified her as “fucking useless”
• That venal doesn’t even begin to describe the disposition of National Party politicians

While the tape does not have Bridges explicitly saying, “how do we hide this donation”, it is clear subterfuge surrounding donations is so routine within National that it doesn’t need to be stated.

If you go past his incomprehensible English, what Bridges is really saying is that he wanted to keep the money outside the National Party official channels. He mulls whether or not he needed to inform party president Goodfellow, who he was due to meet later that night.

Bridges discusses whether the $100k is enough to get Zhang’s business partner Colin Zheng in as a National Party candidate and whether there that wad of cash was enough to up Chinese parliamentary representation. This would be at the expense of Filipino or Indian representation and would come via those ‘useless’ dead-wood MPs like Findlayson, Carter, Wagner, or the “fucking useless” Pugh.

“You’ve only got so much space. Depends where we’re polling, you know… two Chinese would be nice, but would it be one Chinese or one Filipino?” says Bridges, to which Ross retorts: “Two Chinese would be more valuable than two Indians, I have to say.”

The casual racism is nauseating but more concerning is the question of influence.

Newsroom’s Laura Walters has written a revealing profile of Zhang Yikum, who despite speaking no English was, on Queen’s Birthday, awarded an MBE “for services to New Zealand-China relations and the Chinese community”. Zhang, who has deep ties to the Chinese communist party also has close links to Labour politicians like Andrew Little and Phil Goff, who was the recipient of substantial donations for his Auckland mayoralty campaign.

Zhang’s donations are a smoking gun of the Chinese Communist Party’s political soft power.

University of Canterbury professor and China soft power expert, Anne-Marie Brady, notes Zhang is a leader in the Chinese Government’s United Front work activities, the Chinese Government’s department that “helps keep unity and promote the party’s values in China and among the Chinese diaspora”.

After moving to New Zealand in 2000, the now multi-millionaire started restaurant businesses, before expanding into property investment and food manufacturing. He has set up the Chao Shan General Association of New Zealand as a way to help support Chinese migrants, and foster relations between the two countries including promoting China’s Belt and Road Initiative in New Zealand.

He has been deeply involved in trade delegations between China and New Zealand and those activities have invariably involved high level contacts with officials from both the National and Labour parties.

In her book Magic Weapons: China’s political influence activities under Xi Jinping, Brady explains how the Chinese Communist Party uses the “United Front” technique to spread its influence. This means other organisations that are ostensibly separate from the Chinese state are used as proxies. So, in New Zealand, Brady contends that various Chinese expatriate community groups or newspapers have effectively been taken over by the Chinese government.

These organisations are supposedly directed by the Chinese state agency, the United Front Work Department, which President Xi Jinping called a “magic weapon” in China’s growing global influence.

Political Scientist Bryce Edwards argues that “debate about Chinese government influence here also seems to have been muted due to fears of promoting illiberalism. Many are understandably uncomfortable with the potential nationalistic, xenophobic, and even racist elements to concerns about Chinese government interference in New Zealand.”

The NZ Herald’s Matt Nippert and David Fisher’s article Revealed:China’s network of influence in New Zealand provides an interesting background.

Since publishing her unwelcome research, Professor Brady has been the subject of a number of strange break-ins which prompted Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern to order New Zealand intelligence agencies to investigate whether China was involved.

Yesterday’s tape recording is also revealing about the murky business of how former Chinese spy Yang Jian became a National MP in 2011. Like Zhang, Jian has been a major donor to the National Party. Yang spent 15 years studying and working for a Chinese spy agency – the PLA-Air Force Engineering College and Luoyang Foreign Language Institute but we never got to the bottom of his links to the Chinese government.

Chinese soft power has been an even hotter topic in Australia where a government investigation by the prime minister’s office and the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO) uncovered attempts by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) to influence all levels of politics in Australia.

The investigation also looked into political donors linked to China. Head investigator, John Garnaut, a former senior adviser to former Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and a former China news correspondent, told a US Congressional committee that compared to Russian interference, China was “very good at it”.

“Unlike Russia, which seems to be as much for a good time rather than a long time, the Chinese are strategic, patient, and they set down foundations of organisations and very consistent narratives over a long period of time,” Garnaut told the committee.

“They put an enormous amount of effort into making sure we don’t talk about what it’s doing,” he said, adding that countries have “failed to recognise a lot of the activity that has been going on.”

The report’s findings on China’s influence of the media and academia led Turnbull to propose new laws targeting espionage, foreign political donations and foreign interference in December 2017.

Relations between Beijing and Canberra have since soured considerably.

On top of murky dealings regarding New Zealand’s Chinese elite, the National Party donations scandal exposed by Ross revealed that the man behind a $10,000 Cathedral Club National Party donation is Auckland businessman Aaron Bhatnagar.

Bhatnagar, a former Auckland City Councillor, was exposed in Nicky Hager’s book Dirty Politics as one of Whaleoil’s Cameron Slater’s inner cabal, who in 2011 was caught by IT commentator and blogger Russell Brown trying incognito to smear political opponents on Wikipedia.

Bhatnagar was also involved in an illegal hack of the Labour Party website.

National’s hapless hiding of a ‘Cathedral Club’ donation listed the donor’s address as Bhatnagar’s home so he had to admit to being the $10,000 donor. He described the Cathedral Club as “an informal pay-your-own-way dinner club that started in 2001, comprised of a small group of Young Nats and old friends from university days”.

The Cathedral Club, is like the so-called Cabinet Club, that was controversial through the term of John Key’s government because attendees, who paid large sums of money to attend were given access to ministers, including Key when he was prime minister. Key claimed he attended such clubs as an MP and party member but the Cabinet manual makes it clear minister MPs can talk about any portfolio matter.

In 2014, then Green Party co-leader Russel Norman damned such access “as fundamentally corrosive to democracy”.
Such a system gives wealthy people access to the halls of power. Yesterday’s tape reveals just how it works.

Ross, who interestingly has been advised by Dirty Politics actor Simon Lusk, claims the rationale for his expose of the donations scandal is that Bridges and National have lost their moral compass. Deputy leader Paula Bennett, when asked why Bridges has been involved at all in conversations with Chinese businessmen about donations to the party said:

“Because that’s his job. We fundraise.”

If that is what Bennett believes, Ross is utterly wrong – National has no moral compass.

(Simon Louisson reported for The Wall Street Journal, AP Dow Jones Newswires, New Zealand Press Association and Reuters and briefly was a political and media adviser to the Green Party)

207 comments on “No smoking gun but plenty of sunlight from Bridges tape”

  1. Dennis Frank 1

    That certainly is a comprehensive outline of the cultural and political context in which to anchor the recorded conversation of Ross with Bridges. I’ve suspected this type of behaviour for years, and doubt I’m alone in that, but the blatant influence-buying as a communist-directed strategy makes sense. The more they act like capitalists, the less the political right will suspect them, thus collusion results.

    Any alert member of the public familiar with the old wolf-in-sheep’s-clothing simile will figure out the pattern for themselves but it helps for the media to summarise the evidence, that’s for sure. And of course the Labour pigs have been feeding at the same trough as the National pigs, even if the sucking sounds they make are somewhat more muted!

    • patricia bremner 1.1

      On what grounds do you make that assumption???

      • Dennis Frank 1.1.1

        Past media reporting of Chinese donations to Labour. Wealthy people often donate to the political left & right – it’s been standard practice oft reported in western countries for decades. They seem to regard it as similar to an insurance policy, inasmuch as it buys them influence regardless which party is in government.

        • patricia bremner

          Thanks for your reply Frank. It has been standard for big business to donate to both parties, insurance as you say. However you must admit the teat on the right appears to be heavy with cream while the rest get skimmed milk.
          A further point was the diversion of (milk) funds to Bridges attacks or campaigns.

          • Tricledrown

            The Donor is furious other Donors may Dry up.
            National have dug a very large hole.
            John Key has left a very corrupt legacy
            Brownlee on TV this morning played his cards close to his chest.
            Brownlee looks like the safest pair of hands.
            The National Party looks like cycling NZ or Football NZ toxic.
            Boags kiss of Death for Simple Simon.

          • Dennis Frank

            True, seemingly but we don’t really know due to both doing non-disclosure strategies (unlike the Greens). Also, note that there’s been no shock/horror reaction from Labour. No moral stand like “we’d never do that!”

            • mickysavage


              I wish that Labour had the same quality income stream. It does not.

              The deafening silence is because Labour is letting National sort this out all by themselves.

              • UncookedSelachimorpha

                “I wish that Labour had the same quality income stream. It does not.”

                Nor should it.

                “The deafening silence is because Labour is letting National sort this out all by themselves.”

                Yes, but what Labour should be doing is initiating electoral law reform to get private donor money out of politics entirely.

                • Rae

                  I think people should be able to donate to political parties still, but what we need to do is find a way that they remain anonymous, say, a website that donations can be filtered through (so no more cash in a plastic bag) to the designated party of preference of donor to that party. All that would have to be done is to make sure there are no recognisable amounts so that no-one can say “When an amount of $99,386.86 comes to your account, it’s from me, nudge nudge.”
                  Or maybe you prefer this way
                  I definitely agree that the nudge. nudge, wink, wink system is not the best we can come up with

                  • UncookedSelachimorpha

                    “I think people should be able to donate to political parties ”

                    Why should someone with $100k to give, have more political influence than a poor person?

                    Restricting all contributions to a modest maximum annual party membership fee (say $100) would reset the balance between people power and the power of wealth. A further state-funded contribution could go to parties in proportion to their party vote.

                    I doubt you could truly anonymise donations so the recipient doesn’t know. And even if you could – that would still allow very rich people to dominate the political landscape (they can donate to their favoured causes, at the expense of everyone else’s democracy).

                • KJT

                  Labour tried a while back.

                  The media kickback, remember “Democracy under attack” headlines from the right wing, terrified they could no longer buy the “democracy” they wanted.

            • Tricledrown

              Jacinda claimed when asked by media that everything’s above board
              But Labour is wisely sticking to the sidelines.

  2. Dirk.Dirkin 2

    Nats accused Labour of mishandling allegations of sexual misdeeds at a camp while keeping these allegations quiet until a whistleblower needs to be blackmailed.

  3. Sacha 3

    “He mulls whether or not he needed to inform party president Goodfellow”

    Rubbish. There is more than enough to argue about in this palaver without making shit up.

    • Sacha 3.1

      “claims the rationale for his expose of the donations scandal is that Bridges and National have lost their moral compass.”

      Ross very clearly said his concern is with Bridges, not the party.
      I’ll have whatever you’re smoking.

    • Dennis Frank 3.2

      Needs further elucidation – is there a transcript of the entire recording online yet? I recall hearing them refer to whether to inform Goodfellow (which supports what Simon wrote) but don’t recall the exact words used.

      I think the point, which Richard Harman also made (to Jim Mora’s Panel) is that Bridges apparently wanted to use the money for his own political purposes, so he wasn’t keen that it go through the normal party channels. Something a journo ought to follow up on, I reckon. Understandable if the media feeding frenzy currently rates that rather low on the list of priorities!

      • patricia bremner 3.2.1

        Yes I agree, ‘His own political purposes”, that this aspect is very concerning as it shows a casual attitude to the rules. I was interested in the comment about ‘Todd McClay maybe having something up his sleeve’, as a go to person to achieve the money diversion??

        • Dennis Frank

          Didn’t notice that one from McClay but he denied the early claim by Ross that they both knew about the arrangement Bridges apparently suggested. Since Ross has been unable to prove that the instruction to split the donation did originally come from Bridges, McClay could have done so after consultation with Bridges. Donation splitting could feasibly go back into the Key era as standard practice for the Nats, due to all that amending of the Electorate Act in various different years (reported in the other thread). Could be Ross & Lusk were trying to make Bridges responsible for it despite that.

  4. McFlock 4

    It looks to me like they were basically selling list spots for donations. That’s what seems to come through most explicitly. The racism and the stabbing of colleagues is internal shit, most amusing, but the sale of representation seems almost formalised – for a hundred K, they’ll put someone like you on the fast track to parliament.

    • patricia bremner 4.1

      I think the Chinese are too clever for them and play on their hubris.

    • mickysavage 4.2

      It is interesting. They go to ethnic communities and say that for X they could have their very own representative.

      Here is my take from 18 months ago …

      National’s Filipino campaign

      • McFlock 4.2.1

        Heh forgot about that.
        Which raises the question whether the ambassador’s support for Garcia extended beyond appearing at events – any “anonymous” donations paid in fragments, maybe?

  5. Chuck 5

    Simon as you have touched on in your piece above, our Chinese/Asian friends play the long game. I see it almost every week with my Chinese friends – how they do business, raise their children etc.

    Of course, the Chinese Govt wants to assert its influence globally, to ensure access to critical resources to grow and look after that massive country called China.

    Like any good salesperson, once you put a piece of your kit on your customer’s floor it is much easier to retain that particular order book.

    I would expect most prominent Chinese businessmen/women to have ties with the Govt in China. As long as we know that…it can be handled.

    As your headline reads “No Smoking Gun” so of course, you need to come up with other avenues of attack.

    • Dukeofurl 5.1

      “I would expect most prominent Chinese businessmen/women to have ties with the Govt in China. ”
      Really ? So those South Africans who have come to live have ties with government in Pretoria, same goes with the many Australians….UK permanent migrants? Does migrants from Singapore , mostly of chinese descent do this?

      Its bullshit of course. What the government in China does is have its proxies/agents live in NZ to influence the local media, patriotic organisations etc.
      Only a one party state would want to continue its control like this – there is no managing this from our end.

      • Dennis Frank 5.1.1

        You disagree with Simon in regard to the regime’s political strategy re infiltration? Makes perfect sense to me. Just an extension of imperialism, cloaked as capitalist collusion. Your analogy to South Africa etc doesn’t apply. Then you seem to contradict yourself in your final paragraph, which supports his point! Proxies & agents of the Chinese govt, yet somehow without ties to that govt??

    • Gabby 5.2

      How can it be ‘handled’ chuckles? By holding out your ‘hand’?

    • JessNZ 5.3

      Our children’s primary school had a program to teach some German to all the kids each week, and it was set up by some locals (whom I know personally).

      In 2014, the Government announced funding for ALLIS, which only applies to Asian languages. Because no schools get enough funding, it wasn’t surprising that the German language program was suddenly discontinued and now the kids have Chinese each week. They aren’t learning much real language – pretty much games and songs and culture.

      However, I believe the Chinese teachers in the secondary schools are also funded from Chinese contributions. Our son took some secondary, largely because of the experience in primary, and it was interesting to see what personal details were often asked as assignment questions. Again, it was hard to see that he was gaining any real command of the language, so he won’t be continuing. Actually mastering an Asian language takes more than a few years at secondary.

      And of course, there is this very recent acknowledgement of the funding for the Confucius Instititutes at our universities.

      Should we be concerned about having funded Chinese teachers inserted into our educational system at all levels from totally innocent children to young adults in higher learning? I’m pretty sure a Chinese person would consider us naive in the extreme.

      • Chuck 5.3.1

        Interesting points JessNZ I will have a look.

      • RedLogix 5.3.2

        I’m pretty sure a Chinese person would consider us naive in the extreme.

        Considering that for the past four decades or so we’ve done everything within our power to undermine and dismantle the values of our own civilisation, they might also regard us as careless and negligent in the extreme.

  6. Dukeofurl 6

    The nationals media strategy is going to plan:
    Yesterday stories about national Mps shocked and horrified by actions of disloyal MP
    Today stories of national Mps shocked and horrified by disloyal MP and his
    toxic ‘relationships’

    Meanwhile Bridges and Bennett hide away and sent out proxies like Farrar of princess partys fame to deflect and confuse.

    • mpledger 6.1

      The “toxic relationship” is just throwing dirt. Who hasn’t had a relationship that went wrong and people were upset with what went down. If “toxic relationship” changes to harrassment or something worse/illegal then it’s worth bringing it into the public domain but anything else and it’s obviously just meant for deflection.

      • Dukeofurl 6.1.1

        Sex and power … its parliament after all and one of those used sexually was a journalist…or was that the other way round?

  7. Cinny 7

    jlr has just released the text

    • ianmac 7.1

      It seems that Hamilton was just doing his job.
      But there is no record of how he got on tracing those donors.
      Will the police have better luck?

      • Dukeofurl 7.1.1

        Doing his job would mean ‘giving the money back’ – that clearly didnt happen as they would have said so by now.

        • ianmac

          They would only have to give the money back if the donors did not add up. But did they? If it was found that all those individuals gave $14,000 then no more would be said. Kosher? We hear that Hamilton is scrupulous so…

          • Dukeofurl

            so you are saying 7 X $14k donations from names even the party hasnt heard of, all at the same time means its all OK ?

            How did these people get the bank account number ? Ross said Bridges sent him to ‘The $100K guy’ where he provided the bank account number.

    • Dukeofurl 7.2

      Its clear they knew they were dealing with ‘straw donors’ to make up the $100k.

      Whats strange is the media keep saying ‘no smoking gun’ , but thats deliberate I think otherwise if you put it all out there they will successfully counter it.

      Drip feeding means they cant come up with bullshit to evade the story , as the next few days will produce more evidence released.

      • Dennis Frank 7.2.1

        We’ve seen elsewhere the divisions being reported as 7x14K plus one of 2K. Adds up to exactly 100K, the original donor offer. No smoking gun refers to lack of recorded evidence of Bridges discussing that division prior to the money arriving.

        So will the police prosecute National on this basis? Of course not. The Chinese were informed of how to split the donation to make it acceptable to the Nats. Not illegal due to no evidence of the Nats instructing them!

        • Chuck

          Here is Andrew Geddis take on it so far…

          And I heard this afternoon that Zhang Yikun has said he made no personal donation of any amount. It was from individuals which made up a total of $100k (in the amounts you have put above).

          It was also pointed out that if National had just recorded one donation of $100k they would have broken the law…

          • Dukeofurl

            Its also breaking the law to use straw donors or to do donor splitting to evade the limits.

            • Dukeofurl

              “Not illegal due to no evidence of the Nats instructing them!”

              Thats not what the law says Dennis. They have to give it back if ‘the party secretary knows or has reason to believe’ its non complying.

              A coordinated giving of $100K to the same account by unknowns is definitely non complying and they DID NOT give it back.

              • riffer

                Gosh, no way that can ever be proven though. It looks pretty much game over for JLR unless he can pull something miraculous out of his arse. The level of retaliatory takedown today has been breathtaking. From what I’ve seen vox pop today it seems to have completely changed the conversation for the average person.

            • alwyn

              Then who are they and who did put up the money.
              You claim that
              ‘Its clear they knew they were dealing with ‘straw donors’ to make up the $100k.”.
              It might be clear to you, but that merely seems to mean that you think like JLR. So put up and tell us why it is “clear”. It must be a simple thing to do for such a perspicacious individual as you seem to think you are.

              • Tricledrown

                Alwynger be very afraid Lusk is on the job tea party take over Slippery Slater wants National to become ACT.
                Dirty Politic’s you are Being kept out of the loop.
                Another f/ING useful Troll.

      • Chuck 7.2.2

        “Its clear they knew they were dealing with ‘straw donors’ to make up the $100k.”

        You are correct in the sense that “IF” National had recorded it as 1 donation of $100k.

        However, they did not and it was recorded in the amounts as received.

        • Dukeofurl

          They knew they were dealing with a ‘block donation’ of a group acting together – why else would a group of ‘unknown names’ give by NZ standards a huge amount of $14k donations at the same time.

          remember Ross has said he was sent by Bridges to ‘collect’ – which meant he went to provide the party bank account the payments were to be made into.

          Bridges was promised the $100k donation at a previous fundraiser, they knew the quantum was $100K and so it turned out to be .
          or is itusual to get 7 x identical donations of $14k in specific account + one of $2k.

          • Dukeofurl

            Ross knew the party had an obligation to return the money if it was dodgy and used straw donors. By some miracle that problem went away. Yet it was clear it was a coordinated multiple donors to make up $100k

            I think the law requires donations between $1.5K and $15000 for the party to retain ‘names and adresses’

            • Dukeofurl

              Heres the gen from Electoral Act

              A candidate must give back to the donor the entire amount of the donation, or its entire value, if the candidate knows, or has reasonable grounds to believe, that the donor has failed to comply with subsection (2) in any respect.
              A party secretary must give back to the donor the entire amount of the donation, or its entire value, if the party secretary knows, or has reasonable grounds to believe, that the donor has failed to comply with subsection (2) in any respect.

              S2 covers this
              the following information about any contribution that, either on its own or when aggregated with other contributions made by or on behalf of the same contributor to the donation, exceeds $1,500 in sum or value:


              • Dennis Frank

                You’re onto it with this, and if the police are unbiased they will judge the 7 x identical donations of $14k + one of $2k as corresponding to the offer of 100K. They will agree that this is in breach of the law you quoted:

                “A candidate must give back to the donor the entire amount of the donation, or its entire value, if the candidate knows, or has reasonable grounds to believe, that the donor has failed to comply with subsection (2) in any respect…
                S2: … any contribution that, either on its own or when aggregated with other contributions made by or on behalf of the same contributor to the donation, exceeds $1,500 in sum or value”

                So they seem to have a basis for prosecuting whoever signed off the Nats donations declaration! However the police have discretion as to whether to prosecute. Any bias in the heads of those who decide, it won’t happen.

                • barfly

                  “candidate” versus party different numbers involved (15K) but I think the same regulation as in u ain’t supposed to be able to pull that shit!

            • Chuck

              “By some miracle that problem went away.”

              They went back and made sure they complied with the act…in sorting out addresses etc.

              Dukeofurl I think you can discount pretty much everything JLR has alleged. It is now clear the person that JLR is…and his end game.

            • Tuppence Shrewsbury

              “Ross knew” is pretty much Ross imagines now as is clear from all the transcripts.

              When Chris Carter imploded no one imagined it was anything other than some dipshit trying to be the boss, same here really. Ross is clearly a megalomaniac, what’s surprising is how he’s kept in under wraps for so long

  8. Dukeofurl 8

    See their strategy !
    ‘National party president Peter Goodfellow released the same text messages minutes after Ross on Thursday afternoon.
    “There has been speculation that we have received a $100,000 donation, there was no such donation. The Botany Electorate of the National Party received 8 donations, and Mr Ross declared 8 donations to us. Mr Ross has also said that he will be releasing some text messages between himself and Greg Hamilton. To ensure you see the entire conversation we are releasing these 4 text messages,” Goodfellow said.”

    Makes statement to counter Ross , end of story. No interview, no questions , zilch….

    • ianmac 8.1

      The collective wisdom of the National Admin will divert Ross’s credibility. Goodfellow has shown that he is not a Good Fellow. Barclay?

    • Treetop 8.2

      I would like to examine the 8 checks to be sure that they are for the amounts they are claimed to be for.

      Also to compare the hand writing, serial numbers, time they were deposited and cleared.

  9. outofbed 9

    If i was one of the eight who was told to make a donation. I would want to be the one who only had to give 2 grand rather then the 14 grand the others had to fork out 🙂

    • Barfly 9.1

      If the “people” who made these 8 donations actually even exist – the money they donated was all provided by the same source

  10. Ross 10

    JLR is racist? I don’t see that. He makes a comment about Indians presumably because he thinks that is what Bridges wants to hear. After all, JLR is recording their convo. I would not give much credence to anything he says. 🙂

  11. Pat 11

    Stephen Franks on The Panel this afternoon made some pertinent observations ( surprisingly I find myself agreeing with his views) ….the biggest scandal from the tape is the willingness of our so called representatives to sell seats in the house ( something that Labour need to also reflect upon).

    No wonder politicians rate below used car salesmen in the respect stakes…something that it is imperative to change if we are ever to attract citizens of worth to the house.

    A pox on all their houses

  12. Dennis Frank 12

    Checkpoint just now, Bridges said no criminal behaviour evident in the four complaints, so no need to involve the police. Lisa Owen mentioned that she’d discovered one of the bullying complaints went to Goodfellow before Bridges became leader. As a result, that complainant signed a non-disclosure agreement with the NP.

    Later they told us that what they got from Ross today was his text exchange with Greg Hamilton (Sep 12 I think) in which Ross informs him that Bridges arranged the 100K donation(s):

    The Nats are responding by claiming that this was a set-up. Given Lusk is working with Ross, they could easily be right!

    • Dukeofurl 12.1

      Set up ? Sure sounds they have Textor back on board as the rebuttals have been ‘too good’.
      Yestrday he was a lone wolf, and crazy to boot….but that cant have worked so its now its hes cunning and manipulative

    • Cinny 12.2

      Thanks Dennis, hey awesome I didn’t know Lisa Owen was on Checkpoint now, was wondering where she went, primo, will have to tune in to them more often.

    • Treetop 12.3

      As a result, that complainant signed a non-disclosure agreement with the NP.

      The Jamilee Tweets
      I wrote I want to know if there has been a payout to any of the four women by National.

      Why sign a non disclosure agree ment?

      It was either to compensate the woman for wrong doing against her within the National party, or to hush her up, or to protect JLR.

      • Treetop 12.3.1

        I know there has not been mention of a payout. It would be plausible.

        JLR would be unwise to lash out at the woman through a lawyer who signed a confidentiality clause with Goodfellow over seeing it.

  13. Jay 13

    Yes the casual racism is nauseating, but let’s not pretend that this very thing isn’t rife in our public sector, or that it isn’t a direct and predictable result of affirmative action and the like that many of us might support. We might find it distasteful to hear it spoken about in such a cynical fashion, but that won’t change the fact that we have systems and policies across the public sector and other organisations aimed at achieving exactly what Bridges and Ross are discussing. Policies, attitudes and systems like these have in my opinion now largely reduced the value of human beings to their ethnicity, sex, or race, rather than their skills, knowledge, experience etc… Ironically this institutionalised racism is the result of policies and practices aimed at eliminating… racism.

    • David Mac 13.1

      Jamie Lee and Simon’s conversation had nothing to do with race and everything to do with who was going to be best at feathering the nest.

  14. David Mac 14

    I’m astounded by how cheap it is to get on the list. At 100k a nod, lets crowd source 2.6 million and the 26 members of the Petone Municipal Brass band could be controlling the opposition.

    • Tricledrown 14.1

      David Mac they would do a better job

      • David Mac 14.1.1

        Yep, the long-term treasurers of small clubs are wonderfully straight and fastidious.

        • Tricledrown

          And they would all sing from the same song sheet.
          The rats have been outed and are all trying to save themselves from the stinking ship.

          • David Mac

            This Chinese joker with 8 hands, he must have the Charisma of Jackie Chan. Hardly speaks English and our Governor General has dubbed the guy on our behalf for his services to NZ.

            I so wanted people like him to be honoured for making a difference in a way that floats under my radar. Humane shit, helping others before themselves, prospering and helping others at the same time.

            Oh what a sucker I’ve been.

  15. Refreshing to see someone accurately outlay the broad picture on geopolitics rather than pontificate and beat around the bush on side issues. The saga is two sided. On the one hand it involves the squabbles between two members of an defeated opposition party , which then leads on to an expose of casual racist attitudes, contempt for democracy via buying ones way in to positions of influence, party division , and that party’s MO…

    But it also exposes the extent to which a foreign power has made inroads into our democratic process. New Zealanders seem to have a real problem with coming out in no uncertain terms and admitting that we’ve allowed this to go unchecked,… yet we are more than happy to read and comment about China’s soft power influence in a significant number of country’s in Africa for example.

    And in that continent, China has developed infrastructure and trade among those country’s. And political influence. With the latter being the real motive.

    We read about the trade war with the USA, we read about China building islands in the South China sea, and Americas antagonism towards those military installations, – and we seem to have a mental block in remembering that we are part of the 5 eyes agreement.

    And as such we are the weakest link in that chain.

    Yet one that carry’s out on the behalf of the US surveillance of the Pacific and China itself. China knows that we are no military threat, – but the 5 eyes are. There is no need to threaten us with arms,- far simpler , effective and cheaper to buy into our political system. And the price paid is considered literally peanuts compared to the gains achieved. Obviously , to have ‘buy – ins’ to both major party’s is a bonus.

    Sweeteners to individuals in political party’s via lucrative trade deals are easily arranged , and a small price to pay for gaining political influence. Particularly if influence in local legislation means it contains exceptionalism towards China and their interests.

    China , despite being an emergent capitalist nation is also a totalitarian one with one of the worst human rights abuse records globally. Executions for what we would consider in no way deserving of such treatment are common . They are well known to practice soft power… and also for having members of the communist party monitor other Chinese nationals in foreign nations. It would be no stretch of the imagination to say that of all these Chinese students we have in NZ, that there are many communist party loyalists whose job it is to monitor them… with the leverage being that they have family’s at home in the mainland…

    The whole altruistic drive from the business elite , – and the vast media campaigns they embarked upon to embed the message and influence public opinion in this country started with the notion of being’ tolerant’ , embracing ‘diversity’ , – implying at once that we were a small , insular and xenophobic nation intolerant of all those from different cultural backgrounds… and those who disagreed were labelled as ‘racists’ and ‘xenophobes’…

    Yet in light of seeing just who all this peace , love , natural foods and goodwill to all mankind actually benefited ,… this latest between Bridges and Jamie Lee Ross has blown all those noble aspirations wide apart.

    And what it has revealed instead is an insidious long term operation to influence our political landscape by a foreign power using the bait of petty financial rewards and avarice to buy off weak willed elected officials in this country , – and thus betray the voting public.

    We have slipped a long way from when we faced down America over their warships coming into our ports and their ‘neither confirm nor deny ‘ policy.

    Then we were bold.

    Whats changed ?

    • Ed 15.1

      The says this week has shown how deeply embedded China is in the National Party.
      Anyone who votes for National after this week’s events knowingly supports the takeover of the country by Chinese interests.

      • WILD KATIPO 15.1.1

        Indeed , Ed,…

        Yesterday we were 10 years old , yesterday we were freezing cold , yesterday you had us bought and sold but now , – we are Billy Bold !!!

        Billy Bold – Graham Brazier. 1981 – YouTube

  16. It is always interesting to watch how the right wing press manage these attacks on a group of their ” own people ”
    When the shit was thrown at Cunliffe they were murderous in their treatment of someone who had done nothing wrong and were prepared to destroy Cunliffe regardless of the facts around the accusations being levelled at him and since then it has changed the way i view the fourth estate in this country and their appalling behaviour over that whole affair.
    There is according to the way they are covering this ” no smoking gun ”
    but that is not the point.
    Simon Bridges has proven by his behaviour that has been kept concealed from the public that he is not fit to hold any office in this country.
    Once again it has shown the public the calibre of the people who make up this political party and their tactics in pursuing power at any cost.


  17. Jilly Bee 17

    This saga is almost starting to get a wee bit tiresome – a whole lot of he said, they said then he said. I’m still hanging on each version though hoping the truth may come out. Couldn’t help but have a laugh at Mike Hosking though going into bat for Simon this morning, good god, he’s really getting it off over wee Soimun – his mutterings are getting more incomprehensive.

  18. Draco T Bastard 18

    It’s obvious that we need to ban foreign influence upon our internal politics. That has to include:

    *. Ban on foreign donations
    *. Ban foreign influence in our politics (Connections to offshore institutes that actually control local groups)
    *. Ban on non-citizens and dual citizens from entering parliament
    *. Ban Permanent Residents from voting (I’d prefer dropping Permanent residents altogether)
    *. Ban on foreign ownership

    It is time that we became truly independent.

  19. Delia 19

    Pretty disgusted with everything I have heard the last 24 hours.

  20. ianmac 20

    “Zhang Yikun has said he made no personal donation of any amount.” That makes another fly in the mixture. The story of $100,000 was based on that belief.
    This according to the Mayor of Dunedin who is overseas with Zhang.
    The search for the $100,000 will be futile.

    • David Mac 20.1

      Yeah…but…when Simon and Jamie lee were talking about the donation, they aren’t talking about lots of little amounts, Simon suggests the Whale comes to his new place for dinner. “I’ve mentioned it twice.”

      There was no 8 couples coming over for dinner.

  21. Cinny 21

    Confidentiality agreements, cover ups and payouts, that’s how national rolls when it comes to complaints.

    ‘National Party president Peter Goodfellow ‘signed confidentiality agreement’ with woman’

    • David Mac 21.1

      Confidentiality Agreements….

      I’ll give you money and you promise to lie, OK?

      A contract made to be broken.

    • ScottGN 21.2

      And don’t forget he brokered the deal which used taxpayer funds to pay off and shut up Glenys Dickson in the Barclay Affair and presumably Todd Barclay would still be the Member for Clutha-Southland if that all hadn’t gone to custard for National.

  22. CHCOff 22

    If this were a province of China ( & it’s GOOD that it’s not), Bridges and Co would be off to the gulags with this coming out & Ross perhaps promoted, so it’s six of one, half a dozen of another, depending on where one sits.

    Makes one miss those halycon days when the songsheet was all about the benefits of the NZ _ China Free Trade agreement to New Zealand society no?


  23. CHCOff 23


  24. KJT 24

    The law currently allows for “buying” politicians. Whether it is electoral donations, Directorships and other positions after politics, or favourable publicity and free advertising.

    Time the whole issue was addressed. Maybe public funding only in the basis of party membership? With a limit on fees.

    Amazing how National came out with “Democracy under attack” when Labour tried to restrict buying, the political results you want.

    Or, maybe we should bring it all out in the open. require MP’s to wear their sponsors logos, as someone suggested for the USA.

    Corruption is way too easy to get away with.

    • RedLogix 24.1

      Having the parties appoint List MP’s always was open to corruption; I recall commenting on this a decade back. And more pertinently when I ruminated about a neo-colonial Chinese empire’s easy capacity to buy up this small nation to serve it’s own expansionist purposes … it was rubbished as racist xenophobia.

      Well NZ should wake the fuck up and learn a hard lesson. As usual Australia is well ahead of us.

      • KJT 24.1.1

        Having list, or any, MP’s appointed by the party hierarchy is open to corruption..

        Not so open to corruption, when candidates are selected by open voting by the party members. As the Greens do.

        • RedLogix

          True that is definitely an improvement. But then you have a party susceptible to being captured by a relatively small activist membership base at a local level; which can have it’s own problems.

          Democratic accountability is a profoundly important value in our system; while our conventional approach works moderately well, there are plenty of possible alternatives we might want to consider. Another discussion for another day.

          As rewarding as it is to see National’s scab ripped off like this; there is a deeply cautionary tale in it for all our parties and democracy.

          • Macro

            No Red – as a Green member it doesn’t work that way. The ranking of the list is hugely structured and it is very difficult for any one sector to have a dominant influence. Also all candidates present their case at the ranking forum and the delegates from each area have to vote according to the directions of the members whom they represent. So the vote comes from a wide cross section of the party. There are also guidelines to ensure that the list gives a good cross section of representation of the population including balance in gender, ethnic, and experience.

          • KJT

            Would be rather difficult the way it is structured.

      • KJT 24.1.2

        Of course, gaining lucrative private positions after being an MP, with companies you have featherbedded when in Parliament. IS NOT Corrupt.

    • UncookedSelachimorpha 24.2

      “Or, maybe we should bring it all out in the open. require MP’s to wear their sponsors logos”

      Idiocracy is a great movie, where exactly that happens!

  25. David Mac 25

    The problem with doing business with a corrupt regime is that you never quite know where you stand. One foot in jail or bankruptcy at the whim of a disgruntled official.

    I think most foreign countries would prefer to be dealing with a country that can’t be bought. Same rules for everyone. Then players know exactly where they stand.

    • RedLogix 25.1

      The problem with doing business with a corrupt regime

      It’s a totalitarian regime with an underbelly every bit as cruel and brutal as anything Stalin devised … just with modern decor and better window-dressing.

      • KJT 25.1.1

        Just like the USA, then.

        Unfortunately we have to deal with the world as it is, not as we would want it.

        Otherwise we would refuse trade with China, Indonesia, the USA, Saudi Arabia, Israel, Russia, etc etc…………. You can include Australia with their concentration camps also.

        We can, however try and improve things by challenging the politicians leading those countries.

        And our own ones, who are slowly making New Zealand more undemocratic and repressive.

        • greywarshark

          True, good comment KJT.

        • RedLogix

          Not really; there is not a good comparison between the single state CCCP, it’s Orwellian ubiquitous surveillance and mass concentration camps (that’s it tried to hide as ‘re-education camps’), and the USA. Or Australia FFS.

          Erasing all categories, making the relatively minor or moderate the same as the most serious is a very common conflation these days. It’s a simple strategy; nothing is perfect, therefore everything is evil. And all nuance and intelligence scrubbed away.

          We improve things by being clear on what is better or worse. China is worse than Australia … and this tells us which direction is up. Because right now there are more than a few nations; China, Russia, Phillipines, Brazil, Saudi, Nth Korea, Sth Africa and so on … that are heading the wrong way towards illiberal, totalitarian regimes.

          Trade bans are not automatically always the right response, but we do need to be very careful when we indiscriminately open up our economic sovereignty to nations ruled by govts which most definitely do not share our core values.

  26. cleangreen 26

    “Rogue National Party MP Jami-Lee Ross’s recording of Simon Bridges has been widely characterised in the media as “no smoking gun”, but it sure as hell shines sunlight on myriad issues, especially the Chinese-National Party relationship.”

    National = Blue dragon party.

    Jamie was right to tie National to the Asian ‘mafia –

  27. infused 27

    gez, you’re grasping at this one

  28. Gosman 28

    Without direct evidence of wrong doing Simon Bridges’s leadership is actually strengthened at the moment. It is still possible that he is mortally wounded but the tide has turned somewhat against Jami-Lee Ross.

    • Irrelevant.

      What this has all revealed is the Chinese communist party’s influence and buying political influence in this country. Your Bridges/ Ross dramas are side issues. I would thank you to desist with the diversions. No one particularly cares about those two grubby little individuals anymore.

      The emphasis has shifted to the real issues at hand.

      • solkta 28.1.1

        What proof is there that the Chinese communist party is involved?

        • KJT

          Doesn’t really matter.

          What we have considered the case since 84, has just been proved, National, like US political parties and 84 Labour, is for sale!

          • solkta

            What evidence to do you have that the Lange government was bought rather than just misguided?

            • KJT

              Huge increase in Labour’s funding, when they went all ACT on us.
              Don’t tell me it wasn’t paid for, and planned. Douglas and co may have been “useful idiots” but there was a lot of money and influence pushing it.

              Decrease in party funding when Cunliffe sounded left-ish more recently. I suspect had more to do with his ousting. The Labour Neolibs were concerned about their funding sources drying up. Money is the reason why the neo-liberal nonsense hasn’t gone away, despite all the evidence of it’s failure.

            • WILD KATIPO

              New Right Fight – Who are the New Right?

          • Gosman

            What do you mean ‘For sale’? This is merely putting forward a potential candidate not setting policies.

        • Dennis Frank

          Communists aren’t usually big on providing proof of their infiltration of foreign countries. Usually we rely on circumstantial evidence to alert us. Such as this:

          • solkta

            Sure, but there is still no basis to say: What this has all revealed is the Chinese communist party’s influence and buying political influence in this country.

            They might be involved, they might not be involved. $100,000 is not really a lot of money given the potential opportunities.

            • Dennis Frank

              True. The interesting question as to why the Nats felt that the 100K donation had to be split up to hide it was asked on this site, but it hasn’t been answered. My guess is that they are just managing perceptions. Big chinese donations not a good look. The Hamilton/Ross text exchange released yesterday illiminated the process somewhat, but not the motive.

              I see two policies operating in Nat top-level thinking: plausible deniability, and use of any loopholes in our electoral law around donations to hide both large donations and donor identity as much as possible. My guess is that they were adopted early in the Key era, or earlier under Brash (married a chinese woman, so can be expected to be sympathetic). Trying to pin culpability on Bridges is therefore disingenuous by Lusk/Ross. I agree that Ross seems genuine in regard to instructions from Bridges, in his text informing Hamilton of that – but not a smoking gun.

              • Gosman

                There is currently no evidence that a donation from a single source was split up. If evidence comes to light THEN you can seek answers to those questions.

                • Dennis Frank

                  It has. Here’s the RNZ political editor: “Mr Ross claimed he had collected a $100,00 donation and under the orders of Mr Bridges broke it into smaller amounts so the donor would not have to be declared publicly – a breach of electoral law. Mr Bridges denies all of the claims made by his former MP. In a June phone conversation released by Mr Ross yesterday the two men discussed the $100,000 donation and the fact the money had landed in the Botany electorate bank account.”

                  • Gosman

                    That is not evidence that a donation from a single source was incorrectly (and illegally) broken up in to smaller donations. We still only have Jami-Lee Ross’s allegations.

                    • Dukeofurl

                      Allegations? lets go to the tape

                      JLR: They talked to you about a hundred thousand dollar donation –
                      SB: Yep
                      JLR: That is now in.
                      SB: Fantastic

                      Bridges knew it was $100k, Ross knew it was $100k, the law requires the party to return any money that ‘in any respect’ looks like its using straw donors.

                      As if the national party gets a whole swag of $14k donations into the same account at once from people they havent heard of.

                      ‘In any respect’
                      Bridges even tells the party secretary we may have to give the money back …… which never happened ( yet)

                    • Gosman

                      Ummm… did you listen to the tape. Ross actually states there were multiple people involved in the donation not just one. In which case it isn’t illegal to split it up at all.

                    • Dukeofurl

                      people who the party hasnt heard of all donating $14k each ?

                      The money should have been returned as the law requires when there is evidence the donors are strawmen used to get below disclosure limits.

            • WILD KATIPO

              There is every basis solkta.

              And I would challenge you to prove that there isn’t.

              That sort of diversion is no longer accepted. Move along or provide the evidence, please.

              • Gosman

                What an idiot. Prove to me that you don’t work for the Chinese Communist party Wild Katipo.

              • Gosman

                If you don’t prove that you don’t work for the Chinese Communist party you should refrain from commenting on matters involving Chinese people in NZ.

                • No one said anything about Chinese people in NZ . What was mentioned was the CCP buying soft power influence in NZ, – and predominantly in the National party.

                  So the challenge still remains: Prove they are not doing that.

                  • Gosman

                    Prove that you aren’t working for the CCP. I don’t trust you won’t send back anything we type here to your handlers in Beijing.

              • solkta

                You are the one making the accusations, the onus is on you to provide some evidence. Sure there is reason to suspect, but that is a different thing from saying what this has all revealed which is simply false.

                • And your the one trying to disprove it.

                  So go ahead.

                  • Gosman

                    You need to first prove you aren’t working for the CCP. solkta may be under threat if you send information back to Beijing. You must show us that you are not a Chinese counter intelligence agent.

                    • Muttonbird

                      Hey Gosman. Isn’t it great to have the diseased and corrupt inner workings of the New Zealand National Party exposed for all to see?

                    • Gosman

                      Given I’m not a National party member or supporter this is great from my perspective.

                    • Dukeofurl

                      Not a supporter ?
                      prove it!
                      There doesnt seem to much about the party you wont defend ..ipso facto ‘a supporter’

                      These are synonyms for supporter
                      ‘ advocate, backer, adherent, promoter, champion, defender, upholder, votary, partisan, crusader, proponent, campaigner, believer, apologist ‘

                      Apologist for national means you ARE a supporter

                    • Muttonbird

                      Yeah, that is a flat out lie.

                    • Gosman

                      Prove you aren’t a plant for the Chinese intelligence agencies Duke. I can’t risk revealing my identity to someone who will pass on my information to the Chinese.

                  • solkta

                    That is not how it works and you know it. You are just being a dick.

    • ScottGN 28.2

      Strengthened where Gos? Inside the National Party? He started out this week apparently on a negative 27 favourability rating with the public at large. Nothing that’s happened since Monday is likely to have shifted that in his favour.

      • Gosman 28.2.1

        Yes inside the National Party. At this point in time that is all that ,matters. His popularity among the wider electorate will come in to it later.

        • Dennis Frank

          I agree. The political interests of the Labour & National parties are identical currently in this respect: they both see it as the optimal scenario that Bridges remains leader maintaining his illusion of unity as long as possible.

          Could change real fast soon, however. Simon G posted this to Public Address: “Unfortunately there’s a TVNZ poll out this weekend.”

        • ScottGN

          National, understandably, has circled the wagons really. But in reality trouble is brewing. The cracks are getting too wide to paper over. Their main strategy for 2020 – destroy NZFirst and go for a majority on around 46% vote share – looks to have been blown out of the water, they simply can’t afford any poll slippage at all.

          • Dennis Frank

            Yep, deep shit & denial, can’t see this combination working for them! And if there really is a Colmar Brunton poll on TVNZ this weekend, I’m predicting a Nats drop around 3-4%. Depends which days this week they did the polling. If later in the week, the drop could easily be 5-6%.

        • UncookedSelachimorpha

          Hope so – hang in there Simon! You are Awesomeness.

    • KJT 28.3

      Blatantly selling the right to select candidates, is not wrongdoing.

      Only on planet Key.

      • Gosman 28.3.1

        There is no evidence that any selling of candidates were taking place.

          • Gosman

            Prove that you aren’t a Chinese spy. I’m not putting myself at risk revealing information to Chinese intelligence operatives.

        • KJT

          Only Bridges and and Ross’s, taped conversation. What more do you need? Torturing a kitten on live TV?

          • Gosman

            That is not evidence of selling candidates. In fact Simon Bridges makes clear that it would be difficult to accommodate having more Chinese candidates at that time.

        • UncookedSelachimorpha

          With a $100k donation – influence is being sold, regardless of details. No question.

          And no, I don’t think only National is guilty of this.

          • Gosman

            Any political donation leads to greater influence. The Union movement in the Labour party have greater influence than the average Jo Blow party member.

            • Muttonbird

              The Labour Party was formed by unions. There’s nothing clandestine about it – the hint is in the name.

              • Gosman

                And National represents business interests. There is nothing clandestine about that.

                • Muttonbird

                  Yes there is. National claim to be working for New Zealanders. Patently dishonest.

                  • Gosman

                    Labour also tells people they are working for all NZers or do you not think they are helping businesses out?

                    • Muttonbird

                      They are clearly very supporting of businesses in direct balance with the needs of the working and the vulnerable.

                      National is only concerned with business.

                    • Gosman

                      In your opinion. In my opinion you are wrong. But that is why we have politics.

                • Stuart Munro

                  Yup – foreign business interests. Should be changed to Foreign National.

                  • Gosman

                    Ho ho. I see what you did there. How very droll. Congrats.

                    • Dukeofurl

                      “national represents business interests There is nothing clandestine about that.”

                      Hiding big donations is clandestine….. they seem to have it all organised to do so.

                      Which party attacks labour for its links to unions and their donations ….. as though that is illegal !

                    • Gosman

                      National attacks Labour for links to Union’s like Labour attacks National for links to business,

                    • Muttonbird

                      Labour reports union donations correctly. National does not report business donations correctly.

        • Dukeofurl

          “JLR: They talked to you about a hundred thousand dollar donation –
          SB: Yep
          JLR: That is now in.
          SB: Fantastic

          and at the earlier dinner with ‘the man who didnt give $100k’

          JLR :You may recall at the dinner they did discuss candidacy, and another Chinese candidate.
          SB: Two MPs, yeah.
          JLR: Colin Zheng, the younger one, he’s put his name in for candidates college

          So candidate counting did occur at meeting with huuuuge party donor.

          Collusion over party list spots for sale.
          ‘JLR: Two Chinese would be more valuable than two Indians, I have to say.’

          A common meaning of valuable is monetary terms

          • Gosman

            Wow! Political donor is interested in future candidates for Political party. What a shocker. Next you will tell me that they discussed policies they would like implemented as well such as lower regulation and tax cuts.

            • Dukeofurl

              You are slipping Gosman…you should be claiming its not illegal to award list spots based on the money. Which it isnt… but you know why you cant say that

              So you are reduced to making up stuff they didnt say..

              • Gosman

                There was no list spot offered up in exchange of the the donation, but then again you knew that already.

                • Dukeofurl

                  ‘No list spot offered’

                  but look what the tape says-
                  “JLR . You may recall at the dinner they did discuss candidacy, and another Chinese candidate.

                  SB: Two MPs, yeah.”

                  Another chinese candidate ?

                  Ross later says 2 chinese is worth more than 2 Indians- he talking money of course

                  • Gosman

                    Yes, they discussed candidacy. Noone is disputing that. What you are claiming is that they selling list spots. There was no indication that was discussed with the Chinese donor/s. What is clear from the tapes is that Bridges and Ross have a conversation on the merit of having more Chinese or Fillipino candidates versus Indian.

            • Gabby

              It’s all about family really isn’t it gozzer.

    • Cinny 28.4

      nat party is hurting big time. They’ve lost the female vote.

      Have been listening to talk back this week, not much love out there for simon.

      And reading kb, where the lack of love for simon is also very apparent.

      • Gosman 28.4.1

        Unlikely given the women who have come forward have not criticised National only Jami-Lee Ross. In fact one woman praised the way the National party handled her complaint.

        • Muttonbird

          Her career threatened by Paula Bennett means she is bound to say that.

          The Nats have form in this practice…

          • Gosman

            Ummm… why would she still be a member of National if she felt her career was under threat by them? Your logic is faulty.

            • Muttonbird

              Her political career with National over means she has no political career at all. She’s protecting her ambitions and her future as directed by Paula Bennett, by heaping praise on a clear flawed response to Ross’ emotional abuse.

              • Gosman

                I’m pretty sure if she is a member of National she will have options outside Politics. National is not like the Labour party.

                • Muttonbird

                  She wants a career in politics – that’s her ambition and with National it is.

                  You flippant sideswipe is evidence I have won this argument.

                • Dukeofurl

                  Options outside national ?

                  You mean like being on the board of Bunnings like English scored…. still waiting to see Joyces life outside national …
                  Borrows life outside national was a labour ‘working group’

                  Pugh was a Mayor of Westland- that makes her unemployable on 2 counts ‘outside national’

    • Dukeofurl 28.5

      No direct evidence ?

      hello. he discussed with JLR how to ‘get the right words’ to speak to the party President about the $100k donation that was ‘unusual’

      “JLR: I’m just aware there’s – the money’s fine sitting there in the Botany account. I don’t know what your arrangement is with Goodfellow or not, that’s all.
      SB: I need to talk to him. I’m actually seeing him tonight, I wonder if I should..
      JLR: I don’t think we can-
      SB: I should wait and get the right words.
      JLR: I don’t think we can raise tens of thousands and completely keep him out of the loop.
      SB: No no we can’t.
      JLR: Maybe if you’re just honest with him about it.

      Why wouldnt they be honest ?

      Whats Bridges going to say to the Police in his interview ? Oh thats right there is always the barclay defence

      • Gosman 28.5.1

        Because Bridges obviously wanted to use the funds directly not for National party admin expenses (which was the risk just handing the money over to Peter Goodfellow without discussion,

        • Dukeofurl

          For a non member – non supporter you sure are presuming lots of things on what they would do with it.

          The other explanation from the context of the $100K that seems to have been broken into smaller amounts is that they knew its was dodgy so being honest was ‘the best option’

  29. Dennis Frank 29

    The most likely target of police prosecution will be Greg Hamilton, since he’s the Nat official responsible for processing donations in accord with the law:

    “A party secretary must give back to the donor the entire amount of the donation, or its entire value, if the party secretary knows, or has reasonable grounds to believe, that the donor has failed to comply with subsection (2) in any respect.”

    “(2) If this section applies to a donation, the donor must, at the time of making the donation, disclose – (a) the fact that the donation is funded from contributions; and
    (b) the following information about any contribution that, either on its own or when aggregated with other contributions made by or on behalf of the same contributor to the donation, exceeds $1,500 in sum or value:
    (i) the name of the contributor; and
    (ii) the address of the contributor; and
    (iii) whether the contributor is an overseas person within the meaning of section 207K; and
    (iv) the amount of the contribution or, in the case of aggregated contributions, the total amount of the aggregated contributions; and
    (c) the total of all of the amounts disclosed under paragraph (b)(iv) in relation to the donation; and
    (d) the total of all of the other contributions made in relation to the donation.”

    The legalese appears to suggest that parliament agreed to legislate to identify any group donations that consisted of individual contributions, and the actual clauses specify how to do this. If the Nats failed to identify the group total (100k) in relation to the components and identity of the individual donors, the police can prosecute them on a sound basis. If the NP auditors signed their approval of the NP declaration, they can also be prosecuted likewise.

    Looks like Ross was right, and the media are using the lack of obvious proof in the evidence he provided as an excuse to avoid reading the legalese!

    • Dukeofurl 29.1

      In ‘any respect’ is the killer phrase as that means its wider than just saying heres 7 x $14k donations with names and addresses that came in all at once. Nothing to see here.

      But its clear from the tape that Bridges knew it as a $100k donation, you can bundle up smaller donations to make a big one and lodge as a single name thats revelaed but not the other way round.

      If the donors were employees of Zhang Yikun , then it should have been in his company name. if the donors were members of the Chinese Association he headed then it should have been in that groups name.

      nationals only way out is to secretly return the money and just as secretly amend the party donation return , like they did with Bridges electorate return ( where he was on the hook for using a straw name for a donation he knew who the donor was)
      By doing all this means they have the greatest chance the police will look the other way like they did with Banks.

      As an aside the Police have whole ‘textbooks’ on what the law says and the court rulings on most of the crimes they investigate. I would bet the part of the shelf that is for ‘Election crimes’ is empty

      • Chuck 29.1.1

        “if the donors were members of the Chinese Association he headed then it should have been in that groups name.”

        As I pointed out yesterday if National had recorded it as 1 donation of $100k (under the above group’s name) when in fact it was a number of smaller amounts from different people then yes National would have broken the law!

        • Dukeofurl

          ” 1 donation of $100k (under the above group’s name) when in fact it was a number of smaller amounts from different people …and national would have broken the law “??

          Bundling is not against the law when its moved up from non disclosure to disclosure.
          Its only illegal when its the other way around.

          national did bundling up smaller donations when it declared a large donation from the restauranteur Tony Astle- he held a fund raiser(s) at his restaurant with Key in attendance.

          Bundling up isnt illegal as the only offence mentioned is this one:
          207LA Offence relating to splitting party donation or contribution to party donation

      • Gosman 29.1.2

        What is clear from the tape is that Jami-Lee Ross frames it as a multi-party donations of $100 K and Simon Brisges requests him to get it to the party so he can use it. There is no indication Bridges knows it is from a single donor and that it will be split up before it is in the Party’s accounts.

        • Dukeofurl

          Bridges arranged the donation ( at a fundraiser duhhh) and asked Ross to collect it.
          Bridges knows its a $100k donation as he confirms it when Ross says its in the party account

          JLR: Hey um you know at Paul Goldsmith’s function you saw those two Chinese guys, Zhang Yikun and Colin? You had dinner at their home?
          SB: Yes.
          JLR: They talked to you about a hundred thousand dollar donation –
          SB: Yep
          JLR: That is now in.

          They talked to YOU – meaning Bridges- about the $100K

          • solkta

            Yes it seems clear to me that they are talking about one man and one donation. Bridges is so clear on the need to have dinner with the guy as a way of thanks and that Ross should attend. If it were from a group of people wouldn’t Bridges want to invite the others as well?

          • Gosman

            “Ross: Maybe if you’re just honest with him about it.

            Bridges: I think that’s right. I’ll raise it with him but we should probably just think it through. I mean, it can be in the Party but I do just want to make sure we’ve got that money to do those things. Don’t you think?

            Ross: Donations can only be raised two ways: Party donation or candidate donation.

            Party donation has a different disclosure which is fine, and the way they’ve done it meets the disclosure requirements… it meets the requirements where it’s under the particular disclosure level because they’re a big association and there’s multiple people and multiple people make donations, so that’s all fine. But if it was a candidate donation that’d be different. So making them party donations is the way to do it. Legally though if they’re party donations they’re kind of under Greg’s name as the party secretary.”

            Note the following “…it meets the requirements where it’s under the particular disclosure level because they’re a big association and there’s multiple people and multiple people make donations, so that’s all fine. ”

            What does that tell you?

            • Dennis Frank

              It tells me they were trying to conform to the legal requirements. Doesn’t tell me they succeeded. And you didn’t acknowledge the key point made by the Duke:

              JLR: They talked to you about a hundred thousand dollar donation. SB: Yep

              So Bridges is on record as having been offered a single donation of 100K by Zhang. That establishes some complicity by Bridges. Ross explains to him that the donation will arrive in the Botany account subdivided to fit below the 15K threshold, so he’s in the loop on that. So if a police prosecution proceeds on the basis of a National Party breach of electoral law, he’ll be called to testify on the extent of his involvement, due to that established complicity already made public.

              • Gosman

                Answer my question below. If duke is correct then the tape WAS a smoking gun. Yet even the title of this thread acknowledges it was not that. Why is that do you think?

            • Dukeofurl

              ” meets the requirements where it’s under the particular disclosure level because they’re a big association and there’s multiple people and multiple people make donations, so that’s all fine. ”

              No its not. It was arranged as $100k donation- the fundraiser remember. As the texts later showed the names attached to each of the 6 x$14k didnt make any sense.
              the Election Act specifically makes this illegal to get under the $15k disclosure level.
              207LA Offence relating to splitting party donation or contribution to party donation
              ‘A person is guilty of a corrupt practice who directs or procures, or is actively involved in directing or procuring, 2 or more bodies corporate to split between the bodies corporate a party donation in order to conceal the total amount of the donation and avoid the donation’s inclusion by the party secretary in the return of party donations under section 210(1)(a).’

              They are a big association and the straw donors were all arranged by the principals to split up a $100k donation as offered to to Bridges at Goldsmiths fundraiser ( does he get a finders fee?)

              Even in the party GM texts he talks to JLR about
              ‘Was there a particular individual who arranged it “[the donations]

              The party has to return the money if there is any’ suspicions in any respect’ of the way the donation and names arent being used to get around the law.

              Bridges is also in the gun about the Cathderal Club donation, which again was a false name to cover Bhanagars donation. Thats illegal too.

              Bridges says it was a mistake and should be a party donation. If the police look at the Tauranga bank account, it could very well show the money spent by Bridges in Tauranga for his re election and not passed onto the party at all. So he could be caught by a second sham electoral return to cover up the first.

              Bridges was of course a lawyer , but mostly as a prosecutor. he wouldnt have the fanatical attention to detail a private practice lawyer would have you have experience of getting things right. Prosecution has different skill sets and more about presentation and getting the right info out of witnesses

              • Gosman

                How come noone is stating this was a smoking gun then? If you are correct then it is a smoking gun and the title of this thread is incorrect. If even authors at the Standard aren’t seeing the way you see it then perhaps you might be wrong. Think about it.

                • Dennis Frank

                  It’s the old kiwi she’ll be right syndrome. A culturally-induced miasma that clouds the mind. Those slow on the uptake will get there eventually.

              • Dennis Frank

                That’s an interesting new dimension. Bodies corporate is a legal term, and the law often defies common sense so any assumption that individuals are excluded could easily be false. A quick reality checks shows that indeed, they are included in the definition: “A legal entity (such as an association, company, person, government, government agency, or institution) identified by a particular name.

                Looks like the section you quote there not only implicates the Zhang organisation and the National Party as two obvious bodies corporate involved, but Bridges, Ross and Hamilton as well. Cool! If the police prosecutor fails to act on this basis, citizens could take a class action against him on the basis of collusion in corruption, to defend democracy. Just watch the cops try to wriggle out of this net!!

            • Dukeofurl

              Why is Bridges going to arrange a dinner to thank the people – who from what we are told werent named as part of the $100k.

              And the party GM says there are problems with the actual names that were use …duhh.. the law says return the money if there are ‘reasonable suspicions’

              They didnt want to do that …. now they are stuck. Im pretty sure returning the money now is their first option to get out of this mess.

              Police of course can track back on the bank accounts used by the donors to ‘follow the money’

              • Gosman

                Explain the the title of this thread (“No smoking gun but plenty of sunlight from Bridges tape”) then. If you are correct then the tape WAS as moking gun. Only a few people like you seem to be arguing it was though.

                • Dennis Frank

                  Yeah, but think why. Few people read acts of parliament. Those who check out the legalese struggle with it. I do, and I’ve been adept at discerning significant nuances in text for quite a while. There’s an art to that stuff, and it’s contestable. As you have been demonstrating. Only via that contest can we establish a common ground of comprehension.

                  • Gosman

                    LOL! Yes you seem to have managed to identify this as a smoking gun when the best legal minds in NZ have yet to do so. Congrats on that.

                    • Dennis Frank

                      Thanks. I’ve commented on Pundit to see if law prof Andrew Geddis will adjust his view. Edgeler also sees no smoking gun. Understandable, given all the distracting kerfuffle going on. I trust both will eventually suss the reality of the situation. Nor am I assuming I’m right – even lawyers themselves contest the meanings of legislation and argue in court on that basis. Truth is slippery.

    • Muttonbird 29.2

      They will definitely throw someone under the bus.

  30. Dukeofurl 30

    Just to make it clear of when the donations were split – Farrar especially has been bullshitting on this

    “Ross’ story changed at his press conference after visiting the police. This money had not actually been divided up by him personally (because, I should note, if Ross had done so then he would have been guilty of those potentially serious criminal charges). Rather, the donation had appeared in his electorate bank account already split into these smaller, non-disclosable amounts.”

    Ross of course met with the head honcho of the Chinese group on this to provide the bank account details. His testimony to police on what happened there should be interesting

    • Dennis Frank 30.1

      Yes we do await further clarification. We have no record of who instructed the donor how to split the donation and transfer it to the NP with individual names attached. Hamilton complains to Ross on the text that they don’t match the electoral roll so there must have been subsequent finagling to produce the final result.

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Remainers starting to sound like fascists
    As Brexit comes to a grisly conclusion (perhaps) people on all sides are saying intemperate and uwise things.  Some, like the Daly Mail, have been doing it for years.People as normally level headed as Jon Lansman are calling for automatic deselection of MPs who vote against a (likely) Labour three ...
    20 mins ago
  • Labour MPs supporting Johnson’s turd-sandwich deal?
    I find this unbelievable:
    I've got one source saying more Labour MPs than expected are mulling whether to vote for the deal - including names who were not on the letter to Juncker and Tusk— Emilio Casalicchio (@e_casalicchio) 17 October 2019 I've compiled a list of possible reasons why Labour ...
    19 hours ago
  • Why do we need control orders again?
    On Wednesday, the government was loudly telling us that it needed to legislate to allow it to impose "control orders" - effectively a parole regime, but imposed without charge, prosecution, conviction or real evidence - on suspected terrorists because they couldn't be prosecuted for their supposed crimes. Today, it turns ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    22 hours ago
  • Bullshitting the Minister
    On Monday, the Hit and Run inquiry heard from NZDF's former director of special operations, who claimed that the defence Minister knew everything about the Operation Burnham raid. Today, the inquiry heard from that (former) Minister - and it turns out that he didn't know nearly as much as NZDF ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    22 hours ago
  • Speaker: Extinction Rebellion is not a cult (but ecstasy for the people)
    Yoga gurus and cult leaders – I’ve seen a few. Two weeks ago, I unknowingly joined an alleged new-age cult at the Kāpiti coast, together with a giant kraken and some neatly dressed pensioners who would make any book club proud.They were among the two hundred people of all ages ...
    1 day ago
  • We need to bring the police under control
    The last decade has seen a trend of increasing weapons availability to police. Assault rifles. Tasers on every hip. Guns in cars. And following the march 15 massacre, pistols on every hip, all over the country. At the same time, its also seen an increase in the abuse of force: ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • If you can’t measure it, does it exist?
    In the last couple of weeks, I’ve been busy preparing for our summer paper on Science Communication. Looking for something amusing about ‘risk’ in science, I came across this neat cartoon about why so many people come knocking on my door (or phoning me, or emailing me) desperately wanting ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    1 day ago
  • Swinson’s swithering
    Jo Swinson is doing even worse at this Being Sensible lark that I'd thought.  I've just become aware of the following utterance
    .@KayBurley presses Lib Dem leader @joswinson on whether she would agree to a #Brexit deal 'no matter how bad a deal it is' as long as it had ...
    2 days ago
  • Women’s rights, trans ideology and Gramsci’s morbid symptoms
    by John Edmundson The International Socialist Organisation (ISO) have recently reposted a February article, by Romany Tasker-Poland, explaining ISO’s position in the “trans rights” debate.  It is available on their website and on their Facebook Page.  The article sets out to explain why “socialists support trans rights”.  It reads more ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 days ago
  • We need to take guns off police
    Today's IPCA report of police criminality: a police officer unalwfully tasered a fleeing suspect who posed no threat to anyone:The police watchdog has found an officer unlawfully tasered an Auckland man who broke his ankle jumping off a balcony to escape arrest. [...] To avoid arrest, the man jumped over ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • “Bringing kindness back”
    "Auckland City Mission: 10% of Kiwis experiencing food insecurity", RNZ, 16 October 2019:About half a million people are experiencing food insecurity, according to new research from the Auckland City Mission. Food insecurity, or food poverty, is defined as not having enough appropriate food. The City Mission said over the last ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Press Release: “Fake News” from Auckland City Council CCOs Board Chairs re pay and performance b...
    Media Statement for Immediate Release 16th October 2019 “Fake News” from Auckland City Council CCOs Board Chairs re pay and performance bonuses for top managers Despite comments from Auckland City Council CCOs Board Chairs re pay and performance bonuses for top managers—Herald Newspaper Tuesday Oct 15th–there is very little evidence ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    2 days ago
  • Ever-So-Slightly Bonkers: Simon Bridges Plays To His Base.
    Would You Buy A Used Propaganda Video From This Man? Bridges and the National Party’s strategists have discovered that the ideas and attitudes considered acceptable by today’s editors and journalists are no longer enforceable. The rise and rise of the Internet and the social media platforms it spawned means that ...
    2 days ago
  • Asking for food
    There is plenty of evidence of the way the business mentality has permeated every level of society since the recrudescence of market liberalism 35 years ago. You only need to think of how citizens in need of help from their government, their state, their country, are now routinely described as ...
    Opposable ThumbBy Unknown
    2 days ago
  • Forty years of change in the jobs Kiwi do and the places they call home
    John MacCormick Over the last 40 years, New Zealanders – and people in other countries – have experienced big changes in the jobs they do and where they live and work. These changes include: a decline in manufacturing jobs an increase in jobs in ‘information-intensive’ industries (which are better paid ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 days ago
  • Protecting Fresh Waterways in Aotearoa/NZ: The Strong Public Health Case
    Nick Wilson, Leah Grout, Mereana Wilson, Anja Mizdrak, Phil Shoemack, Michael Baker Protecting waterways has the benefits of: (1) protecting water from hazardous microbes; (2) minimising cancer risk and other problems from nitrates in water; (3) avoiding algal blooms that are hazardous to health; (4) protecting mahinga kai uses (cultural ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    2 days ago
  • Massey University triggered to rebrand
    by The Council of Disobedient Women In a press release today Massey University announced it has decided to rebrand and reorientate after struggling to be a University for grown-ups. For some time the University has wanted to be a safe play space for wee-woke-misogynists who have been really badly triggered ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    3 days ago
  • Swinson backing calls for a second referendum (again)
    After a brief dalliance with 'hard Revoke' it looks like the Lib Dems are changing ground on on Brexit, with leader Jo Swinson reverting to calling for a second referendum on Johnson's deal.The party has tabled an amendment to the Queen’s speech requesting that any deal brought back from Brussels ...
    3 days ago
  • An odious bill
    The government has decided that someone has done Something Bad. But despite their belief, there seems to be no evidence that they have actually broken the law. So the government's solution is to pass a retrospective law allowing them to be punished anyway, on a lower standard of proof. If ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • National is now the party of climate arson
    So, Judith Collins has done a Facebook rant about climate change, peddling the same shit National has been shovelling for the past twenty years: the impacts are overstated, there's no need to do anything about it, and its too hard anyway (oh, and its so unfair that people who peddle ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • The environmental footprint of electric versus fossil car
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to There is a lot of discussion on the benefits of ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    3 days ago
  • “Manifest” by Andrew Bird – A Song For The Times.
    I came across this song quite by accident. If it isn't one of Greta Thunberg's favourites - it should be.Video courtesy of YouTube.This post is exclusive to Bowalley Road. ...
    3 days ago
  • Passing the buck
    Last month, NZDF's shoddy coverup of what it knew about civilian casualties in Operation Burnham began to fall apart, with the revelation that a report on the matter, which NZDF claimed not to have, had been sitting in an NZDF safe for the past nine years. Yesterday, the man responsible ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • India a major player in Earth observation satellites
    While many imagine that countries like the USA and Europe dominate space activities, in fact India is now a major player on this stage. It launches satellites for its own purposes and also commercially, and has constellations orbiting our planet and returning data of vital importance to that nation in ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    4 days ago
  • The rot at the top (2).
    Thanks to a report from the Acting Inspector General of Intelligence and Security following a complaint by Nicky Hager, we have come to find out that the SIS illegally spied on Mr. Hager on behalf of the NZDF after publication of Hager’s 2011 book, Other People’s Wars. The NZDF justified ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    4 days ago
  • Common misconceptions about “Global Warming”
    COMMON MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT GLOBAL WARMING MYTH 1: Global temperatures are rising at a rapid, unprecedented rate. FACT: The HadCRUT3 surface temperature index, produced by the Hadley Centre of the UK Met Office and the Climate Research Unit of the University of East Anglia, shows warming to 1878, cooling to 1911, ...
    An average kiwiBy
    4 days ago
  • A climate of tyranny
    For the past week, Extinction Rebellion has been peacefully protesting in London to demand action on climate change. The British government's response? Ban their protests:Police have banned Extinction Rebellion protests from continuing anywhere in London, as they moved in almost without warning to clear protesters who remained at the movement’s ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Collins crushes climate
    An essay by Judith Collins MP reported on Carbon News yesterday seems to show an alarming shift in attitude within the National Party. Collins argues against the Zero Carbon Bill, the Paris Agreement, and downplays the magnitude of climate impacts. The Paris Agreement was adopted in December 2015 and ratified ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert McLachlan
    4 days ago
  • More disappointment
    When they were running for election, Labour promised to overhaul the Employment Relations Act and introduce fair pay agreements to set basic pay and conditions on an industry level, preventing bad employers from undercutting good ones. They followed this up by establishing a working group, which reported back in January ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • What do these mother-child studies really say about fluoridation?
    A list of indicators of bad science – many of these are found in articles promoted by anti-fluoride activists. Anti-fluoride activists have been pouring money into a scaremongering campaign warning pregnant women not to drink fluoridated water. They claim fluoride will lower the IQ of their future child. Fluoride ...
    4 days ago
  • Losing Labour’s Mills-Tone.
    Nothing Left To Say: Labour's pollster, Stephen Mills, remains swaddled-up in the comforting myths of the 1980s. As if the experience of Roger Douglas’s genuinely radical post-Muldoon policy agenda was literally a once-in-a-lifetime thing – as much as the party could possibly absorb for at least the next 50 years.MEMO ...
    4 days ago
  • Speaker: Disability and the Royal Commission of Inquiry into Historical Abuse
    The Royal Commission on abuse in care is very significant for the disability community. For many decades last century, thousands of disabled children, and adults who managed to survive, were locked away from families and communities. This was not for anything they had done, but for the perceived threat their ...
    4 days ago
  • Spain is not a democracy
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • UK Conservatives hate democracy
    With an unfair voting system, uneven electorates and an un-elected upper house, the UK's "democracy" is barely worthy of the name. But now the government wants to make it worse:The government has been accused of suppressing voters’ rights with the potential disenfranchisement of tens of thousands of people after plans ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • What is wrong with our building industry?
    Back in the 90's and early 2000's, the building industry was building leaky homes which should never have been granted consent. Now it turns out they've been building dodgy office blocks as well:New imaging technology has revealed hundreds of major buildings nationwide have defective or missing concrete or reinforcing steel. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Local bodies
    Local body election results were released over the weekend, to joy or despair depending on where you live. In Auckland, Phil Goff trounced John Tamihere, who is muttering darkly about running for Parliament again (but which party would want him?) Wellington is now a wholly-owned subsidiary of Weta Workshop, except ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • A future of government
      How could government evolve over the next decades? Reports of democracy’s imminent demise are greatly exaggerated.  However, satisfaction with political systems in many countries is low, so there is much to do for governments of all political stripes to improve relevance and trust. Digital technologies are seen as one ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    1 week ago
  • Speaker: Catalonia, interrupted
    Two years have now gone by since the Friday afternoon when my university-student son and I headed out of our Barcelona flat to a nearby primary school, designated as a polling station for the vote that was to be held the following Sunday: the referendum on Catalonia’s independence from Spain ...
    1 week ago
  • Sage Decisions Unwisely Over-Ruled.
    Overruled: The joint decision of Finance Minister, Grant Robertson (Labour) and his Associate Minister, David Parker (Labour) arguably the two most powerful ministers in Jacinda Ardern’s government, to grant OceanaGold the consents which Land Information Minister, Eugenie Sage (Greens) had earlier denied them, offers bitter proof of how hard fighting ...
    1 week ago
  • Government may ban voting in effort to get more people to do it
    More than double the number of people who will vote in this year’s local body elections have tried marijuana or urinated somewhere they shouldn’t have. As local elections look set for the lowest turnout in decades, with many regions falling well short of 40%, the Government is exploring a number ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Woman: Deleted.
    A Statement on Abortion Law Reform by the Council of Disobedient Women   On the eve of bringing an end to antiquated, anti-women abortion laws Green MP Jan Logie intends to write women out of the Bill. With a stroke of the pen, the woke are aiming for total erasure ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • The Hollowest of Men Ride Again… SURPRISE!
    Musings continue apace about “the experienced businessman!” soon to be taking up a National Party MP position. Or to be more accurate, being parachuted into a seat to shut down their former MP Jamie-Lee Ross, who despite his own shortcomings shed at least some more light on the inner workings ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    1 week ago
  • Barbaric
    The Ugandan government wants to murder gay people:Uganda has announced plans to impose the death penalty on homosexuals. The bill, colloquially known as “Kill the Gays” in Uganda, was nullified five years ago on a technicality, but the government said on Thursday it plans to resurrect it within weeks. The ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Fighting Monsters.
    Freedom Of Speech? The Säuberung (cleansing by fire) was the work of the German Student Union which, on 10 May 1933, under the watchful eye of the Nazi Reichminister for Propaganda, Joseph Goebbels, consigned 25,000 books to the flames in a ritual exorcism of “un-German thought”. According to the logic of the ...
    1 week ago
  • The next wave of kaupapa Māori politics: its constitutional, it must be.
      “There can be no such thing as kaupapa Māori political parties or politics in Aotearoa” (Willie Jackson, Labour Party (2017). Māori TV, General/List Election Special) I begin with that claim because at the time, I was confounded at first that it fell out of Willie Jackson’s mouth, and then ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    1 week ago
  • Night lights of NZ from orbit
    New Zealand has prided itself for decades with regard to its lack of pollution, and all will be aware that the ‘100% Pure New Zealand‘ meme is under threat through land, water and air pollution of various causes. There is another type of contamination that the country also faces: light ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    1 week ago
  • Reporters deliver uplifting news to fleeing Japanese residents: they won’t miss any rugby
    New Zealand’s media is doing its part in Japan, reassuring those in the path of the storm that they won’t miss any rugby while away from their flooded homes. New Zealand sports reporters stationed in Japan for the Rugby World Cup have had the rare and heartwarming opportunity to inform ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Government in contentious discussions about whether to put surplus on red or black
    Regional Development Minister Shane Jones is the only Cabinet member in favour of putting it all on green. As Finance Minister Grant Robertson finds himself with an enormous $7.5 billion surplus, the Government has begun intense, at times contentious conversations about whether to put the money on red or black at ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Jordanian teachers’ successful strike has lessons for here
    by Susanne Kemp At the start of September close to 100,000 school teachers went on strike in Jordan.  They demanded a 50% pay rise.  A pay rise actually agreed to by the regime back in 2014. In early October, however, in the face of government repression and threats, the teachers’ ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Why some people still think climate change isn’t real
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to Why do people still think climate change isn’t real? David ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • The SIS unlawfully spied on Nicky Hager
    Back in 2011, journalist Nicky Hager published Other People's Wars, an expose on NZDF's activities over the previous decade of the "war on terror". NZDF didn't like this, and especially didn't like the fact that it was base don leaks from their own. So, they had the SIS investigate him ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • October 2019 – Newsletter ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    1 week ago
  • And they wonder why we think they’re environmental vandals…
    The Zero Carbon Bill is due back from select committee in two weeks, and will likely pass its final stages in November. So naturally, farmers are planning a hate-march against it. But they're not just demanding lower methane targets so they can keep on destroying the planet; they're also demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Paying the price in California
    Last year, California burned. This year, to stop it happening again (or rather, to stop themselves from being found liable if it happens again), Pacific Gas and Electric is cutting power to half the state for a week:Schools are closed. Traffic lights down. Tunnels dark. Businesses unopened. Hospitals running on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Let’s Hear It For Up-Close-And-Personal, Hard-Copy Democracy!
    The Best Way: Missing from the on-line voting debate is any reference to the voting system that produces turn-out figures ranging from 77 to 93 percent of registered voters. The voting system used to collect and count the votes cast in our parliamentary elections. The system that involves citizens making ...
    1 week ago
  • 10/10: World Day Against the Death Penalty
    Today, October 10, is the world day against the death penalty. Out of 195 UN member states, 84 still permit capital punishment. Today is the day we work to change that. This year's theme is children. Having a parent sentenced to death or executed causes long-term trauma and stigmatization which ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Talking Freer Lives: a Marxist gender-critical perspective from Australia
    Among the great new bunch of political friends we have been making recently is the excellent Australian-based Marxist gender-critical site, Freer Lives.  So we asked the comrade who set up that blog to write something for Redline on the blog, himself, his analysis of the rise of gender politics and ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Government spin accepted by union leadership
    by Don Franks  The Auckland City Mission is struggling with a 40 percent increase in demand for food parcels this year. A total of 23,020 were needed by June. Last month Missioner Chris Farrelly told the Herald the “cupboards are bare” and without an emergency food drive, he can’t see ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Forbidden Thoughts
    by The Council of Disobedient Women   Massey Wellington Student Association had a sit-in today. Imagine a sit-in. On a campus. Against a women’s rights meeting. Did the ’60s really happen or did we fucking dream it? They gathered in the student square, an echo chamber. Sitting on soft pillows ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Much love to my loyal Ukrainian readership
    For some reasons, my post about the mystery message from inside the Downing Street bunker seemed to catch people's attention.  Quite a lot of hits from NZ (unsurprisingly) and the USA (a bit more puzzlingly, but hi there, USAians!!) and 76 views from the Ukraine.I've celebrated my Ukrainian readers in ...
    1 week ago
  • Another day of bonkers GNUmours (again, sorry)
    First, almost a score of Labour MPs seem to have sent a letter to the EU basically begging them to accept a deal - any deal - just so Britain can get the Heck on with Brexiting instead of being trapped in limbo:
    To avoid no deal, deliver on the ...
    1 week ago
  • Labour vs working class immigrants – again!
    by Phil Duncan In 2016 the National-led government suspended the Parent Visa Category, through which migrants were able to bring their parents into New Zealand.  Since then over 5,700 people have been in immigration limbo, stuck on the visa wait list. Labour is now bringing back the scheme.  Well, sort ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Speak Up for Women press statement: on Massey University and Feminism 2020
    The following was released yesterday (Tues, October 8) by the women’s liberation organisation Speak Up for Women. On 23 September Speak Up For Women announced that we would be holding an event at the Massey University Theaterette in Wellington. The event is called Feminism 2020. The intention of the event ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Farmers support dirty rivers
    The government is currently consulting on plans to improve freshwater quality. So naturally, farmers oppose it:South Taranaki farmers are preparing to fight proposed national freshwater changes that some fear will bankrupt them. The Government's proposed National Environment Standard on Freshwater Management, released in September, rated the Waingongoro River as one ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • No-one cares about local government
    Yesterday was the last day for (reliably) posting your vote away in local body elections. Turnouts are mostly much lower than the equivalent time last year (Palmerston North is down 2.3%), and so naturally people are pushing their online-voting snake oil again. Because the online census worked so well, lets ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The political ghosts of eugenics may matter more than the genetic
    This essay, on the political legacy of the eugenics movement, by Kenan Malik was originally published in the Observer on 6 October 2019, under the headline ‘The spirit of eugenics is still with us, as immigrants know to their cost’. Birth control. Intelligence tests. Town planning. Immigration controls. It’s striking how ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • “Surplus” again
    Another year, and the government has announced another enormous government "surplus". And just like last year, its nothing of the sort. When we have people homeless and sick and hungry, when we have schools and hospitals still falling down, when we have underpaid public servants and infrastucture unmaintained or unbuilt, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Inside the Downing Street bunker
    James Forsyth at The Spectator (I know, I know) has tapped one of his contacts inside Number Ten for an insight into the Johnson administration's thinking and strategy.It is fascinating, unsettling and quite, quite mad.  Some key points:Negotiations have stalled and the Johnson administration are keen to blame the EU: ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Taking Control Of The Nation’s Story.
    Fatal Contact: With the arrival of captain James Cook in October 1769, the islands of what would become New Zealand ceased to be the preserve of Polynesian navigators and settlers and became a part of both the world’s map and the world’s history.THE MAORI NATIONALIST assault upon the historical meaning ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Are GNUs extinct?
    Another round of tactical talks about forming a Government of National Unity have come to nothing with the Liberal Democrats still refusing countenance putting Jeremy Corbyn into Downing Street:Opposition talks on Monday made little headway over when to try and vote down Boris Johnson's government and who might succeed him as ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour chickens out again
    When the government was elected, it promised to lead the way on electric vehicles, and specifically to make the government vehicle fleet emissions-free where-practicable by 2025.They lied:There are 15,473 vehicles in the government fleet and only 78 are electric. When the coalition Government came into power in late 2017, the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Transgender extremism, violence at work against feminist meeting at British Labour Party conference
    by Nick Rogers The debate around the meaning of sex and gender made an appearance at this year’s British Labour Party conference in Brighton. Women’s Place UK – an organisation that questions the demand that biological males who self-identify as woman should have access to women’s spaces, to all-women shortlists, ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Rebelling in Wellington
    Yesterday I went down to Wellington to participate in the Extinction Rebellion protest. Its part of the latest global wave of XR actions, with actions happening all over the world. Some of those protests are massively disruptive: in Canada, XR is blocking major bridges, stopping people from getting to work. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • ‘The Workshop’ – Report: Talking about Poverty and Welfare Reform: A Guide to Strategies that ...
    The Workshop is a charitable trust for public good. The Workshop undertake research to find ways of communicating that will build support for the solutions that work to solve complex social and environmental problems. See their Report on Talking about Poverty and Welfare Reform below. ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    2 weeks ago
  • Exclusive language
    What is language? We generally assume that it a facility unique to humans, allowing us to share what’s in and on our minds. We can tell of our plans, our past exploits, our knowledge. It also allows us to lie. And yet there are vast numbers of people we can’t ...
    SciBlogsBy Michael Corballis
    2 weeks ago

  • Methane reducing cattle feed one step closer
    The Government today announced its support for a project that could substantially reduce agricultural greenhouse gas emissions from cattle. The announcement was made as part of Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s and Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor’s visit to Nelson’s Cawthron Aquaculture Park. The Cawthron Institute will receive $100,000 from the Government’s ...
    23 hours ago
  • Bill to refresh superannuation system passes first reading
    Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni has welcomed the first reading of the New Zealand Superannuation and Veteran’s Pension Legislation Amendment Bill. “Every New Zealander has a stake in New Zealand Superannuation and Veteran’s Pension,” says Carmel Sepuloni. “They are our most common form of social assistance – nearly 800,000 New ...
    1 day ago
  • Government announces next steps in fight against measles
    Babies in Auckland aged six months and over can receive a free vaccination and children will all have access to vaccines, Associate Minister of Health Julie Anne Genter announced today at Papatoetoe High School.   The move comes as part of Government efforts to step up the fight against measles. ...
    1 day ago
  • Speech to the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs, Pacific Futures: Connections, Identity...
    ***Check against delivery*** Good morning. It is a pleasure to be here, and to have the honour of opening this important conference on behalf of the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs. Let us take the opportunity to acknowledge all the people who have helped make today possible, including our special ...
    1 day ago
  • Police trial new response to high risk events
    Police Minister Stuart Nash says the safety of frontline officers and members of the public will be the focus of a new trial of specialist Police response teams in three of our largest urban centres. Police have this morning released details of an initiative to be trialled in Counties Manukau, ...
    1 day ago
  • New awards celebrate fisheries sustainability
    The Minister of Fisheries is calling for entries for a new public award to celebrate innovation in our seafood sector. “I have established the Seafood Sustainability Awards to recognise and celebrate those throughout industry, tangata whenua and communities who demonstrate outstanding dedication and innovation towards the sustainability of New Zealand’s ...
    1 day ago
  • More progress for women and we can do more
    Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter welcomes leaders in the private sector taking action on closing their gender pay gaps to ensure a fairer workplace for all New Zealanders. Ms Genter today launched a new report, Addressing the gender pay gap and driving women’s representation in senior leadership, from the Champions for ...
    1 day ago
  • Proposals to curb environmental damage help our coasts and the oceans
    Government Ministers today welcomed the release of a marine environment report highlighting the four key issues affecting our oceans, estuaries and coastlines.  The release underlines the importance of government proposals to combat climate pollution, ensure clean freshwater, protect biodiversity, make land use more sustainable, and reduce waste and plastic.    Environment ...
    2 days ago
  • New mental health facility for Waikato
    The Government has approved funding for a new acute mental health facility for Waikato which will provide better care and support to people with mental health and addiction issues. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Health Minister Dr David Clark announced the $100 million project to replace the aging Henry Rongomau ...
    2 days ago
  • 500 new te reo Māori champions in our classrooms
    The Government is making progress on its goal to integrate te reo Māori into education by 2025, with over 500 teachers and support staff already graduating from Te Ahu o te Reo Māori,  Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis announced today. Kelvin Davis made the announcement at an awards ceremony in Waikanae today, for ...
    2 days ago
  • Minister James Shaw welcomes 2018 Census first release
    Statistics Minister James Shaw has welcomed the first release of 2018 Census data. The first release of data today, 23 September, includes key data on population, regional growth, the number of homes and the size of different ethnic groups in New Zealand. Data from the 2018 Census will support the ...
    2 days ago
  • Driving transparency, ethics and accountability in government use of algorithms
    Minister for Statistics James Shaw today announced a public consultation on a proposed algorithm charter for government agencies. The charter has been developed by the Government Chief Data Steward in response to growing calls for more transparency in government use of data. Computer algorithms – procedures or formulas for solving ...
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand and the Netherlands working together on climate change
    Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor, Climate Change Minister James Shaw and visiting Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte co-hosted a business roundtable in Auckland this morning focused on working together to address climate change.  “The Netherlands is an important partner for New Zealand. We share a strong agricultural history. Sustainable agribusiness and ...
    2 days ago
  • Protecting fairness for workers and businesses
    The Government is taking action to build an inclusive economy where more of us receive our fair share at work and businesses can compete on great products and services, not undercutting wages and conditions, Immigration and Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Iain Lees-Galloway says. Two consultations launched today seek feedback ...
    2 days ago
  • Indigenous Freshwater Fish Bill Passes
    The future for New Zealand’s threatened indigenous freshwater fish looks brighter with the passing of the Conservation (Indigenous Freshwater Fish) Amendment Bill in Parliament today said Minister of Conservation, Eugenie Sage. “Until now, our freshwater fish legislation has been 20 years out of date. We have lacked effective tools to ...
    3 days ago
  • Kiwis to take part in world’s biggest earthquake drill
    At 1.30pm tomorrow, hundreds of thousands of Kiwis will join about 65 million people around the globe in ShakeOut, the world’s biggest earthquake drill. The annual drill is to remind people of the right action to take during an earthquake which is to Drop, Cover, Hold, and to practise their ...
    3 days ago
  • Rising wages and low inflation supporting Kiwis
    Kiwis are benefiting from higher wage growth and low inflation under the Coalition Government. Stats NZ data out today shows the rise in the cost of living remains low, as annual Consumers Price Index (CPI) inflation fell to 1.5% in September from 1.7% in June. “The low inflation comes as ...
    3 days ago
  • NZ economy strong amid global headwinds
    New Zealand’s economic strength and resilience has been recognised in a major update on the state of the global economy. The IMF’s latest World Economic Outlook released overnight shows a reduced global growth forecast over the next two years as issues like the US-China trade war and Brexit take hold. ...
    3 days ago
  • Keeping New Zealanders safer with better counter-terrorism laws
    Justice Minister Andrew Little has today introduced a new Bill to prevent terrorism and support the de-radicalisation of New Zealanders returning from overseas. The Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders) Bill gives the New Zealand Police the ability to apply to the High Court to impose control orders on New Zealanders who ...
    3 days ago
  • Improved succession and dispute resolution core of Ture Whenua changes
    A Bill that proposes targeted changes to simplify the processes for Māori land owners when engaging with the Māori Land Court has had its First Reading today. “The approach taken by the Government is to ensure that the protection of Māori land remains a priority as we seek to improve ...
    3 days ago
  • Speech to CTU Biennial Conference
    Let me first thank all the new unionists and members in the room. There is nothing more important to improving people’s working lives than people making the decision to care, to get on board and help, to take up the reins and get involved. Congratulations to you. You bring the ...
    3 days ago
  • Minister ensures continued Whenuapai flight operations
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark has signed a certificate exempting the activity of engine testing at Whenuapai Airbase from the Resource Management Act 1991. The Act gives the Minister of Defence the power to exempt activities for the purposes of national security.  The certificate will mean the recent Environment Court ...
    3 days ago
  • NZ joins Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action
    Finance Minister Grant Robertson has announced New Zealand will join the Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action while attending APEC meetings in Chile. The objective of the 39 member Coalition is to share information and promote action to tackle climate change. It was formed in April this year, in ...
    3 days ago
  • Feedback Sought – Section 71 – Lyttelton Parking
    Feedback sought– Lyttelton commercial zone parking  The Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, Poto Williams, is seeking feedback on a proposal to remove on-site car parking requirements for new developments in the Lyttelton commercial zone.  The proposal, by Christchurch City Council, asks that powers under section 71 of the Greater ...
    4 days ago
  • Feedback Sought – Section 71 – Hagley Oval
    Hon Minister Poto Williams Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration   MEDIA STATEMENT       Tuesday 15 October 2019 Feedback sought – Hagley Oval The Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, Poto Williams, is seeking feedback on a proposal about Hagley Oval. The proposal was developed by Regenerate Christchurch ...
    4 days ago
  • CTU speech – DPM
    Ladies and gentlemen, NZCTU President Richard Wagstaff, members of respective unions – thank you for the invitation to speak to you today. This might be preaching to the choir, but the importance of trade unions in New Zealand’s historical arch is difficult to understate. And it is my belief that ...
    4 days ago
  • Police Association Annual Conference
    "Let’s start by acknowledging that it has been a huge year. " Police Association Annual Conference James Cook Grand Chancellor Hotel Wellington Nau mai, haere mai. Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, ka nui te mihi, ki a koutou katoa. President of the Police Association, Chris Cahill; Members of the Association and ...
    4 days ago
  • New Zealand announces a further P-3 deployment in support of UN sanctions
    Minister of Foreign Affairs Winston Peters and Minister of Defence Ron Mark have announced the New Zealand Government’s decision to again deploy a Royal New Zealand Air Force P-3K2 (P-3) maritime patrol aircraft to support the implementation of United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolutions imposing sanctions against North Korea. New ...
    4 days ago
  • New Zealand deeply concerned at developments in north-east Syria
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters says New Zealand continues to have serious concerns for peace and stability in north-east Syria. “Recent reports that hundreds of ISIS-affiliated families have fled from a camp are deeply concerning from a humanitarian and security perspective”, Mr Peters says. “While we acknowledge Turkey’s domestic security ...
    4 days ago
  • Government on high alert for stink bugs
    Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor is warning travelling Kiwis to be vigilant as the high-season for the crop-eating brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) is under way. “We’re on high alert to stop BMSB arriving in NZ. The high season runs until April 30 and we’ve strengthened our measures to stop stink ...
    4 days ago
  • Better protections for students in halls of residence
    The Government is moving swiftly to change the law to improve the welfare and pastoral care of students living in university halls of residence and other tertiary hostels. Cabinet has agreed to several changes, including creating a new mandatory Code of Practice that sets out the duty of pastoral care ...
    5 days ago
  • New trapping guide for community and expert trappers alike
    The Minister for Conservation Eugenie Sage has launched a new comprehensive trapping guide for community trappers to help them protect our native birds, plants and other wildlife, at Zealandia in Wellington today. ‘A practical guide to trapping’, has been developed by the Department of Conservation (DOC), and was launched during ...
    5 days ago
  • Widening Access to Contraceptives Welcomed
    Associate Health Minister Julie Anne Genter welcomes PHARMAC’s move to improve access to long-acting reversible contraception (LARCs). PHARMAC has today announced it will fund the full cost of Mirena and Jaydess for anyone seeking long term contraception, lifting previous restrictions on access to Mirena. “I welcome women having greater choices ...
    5 days ago
  • Major upgrade for Taranaki Base Hospital
    The Government has approved the next stage of a major redevelopment of Taranaki Base Hospital, which will deliver new and improved facilities for patients. Health Minister Dr David Clark has announced details of a $300 million dollar project to build a new East Wing at the New Plymouth hospital. It ...
    6 days ago
  • Extra support for rural families
    Extra funding will allow Rural Support Trusts to help farming families, says Minister for Rural Communities and Agriculture Damien O’Connor. “I know that rural families are worried about some of the challenges facing them, including the ongoing uncertainty created by the Mycoplasma bovis outbreak. “Those concerns sit alongside ongoing worries ...
    1 week ago
  • Howard Leaque Beekeeper programme graduation
    Thank you for the opportunity to be here to present certificates to the 16 graduates who have completed a beekeeping course delivered by the Howard League.  Let us start by acknowledging Auckland Prison’s Deputy Prison Director Tom Sherlock, and Acting Assistant Regional Commissioner of Corrections Northern Region Scott Walker - ...
    1 week ago
  • Finance Minister to attend APEC meetings
    Finance Minister Grant Robertson leaves this weekend to attend the APEC Finance Ministers meeting in Santiago, Chile. Discussions between APEC Finance Ministers at the meeting will include the effects of the current global economic uncertainty, risks for APEC economies and sustainable development of the region. While at APEC Grant Robertson ...
    1 week ago
  • Pacific languages are a source of strength, they ground us and build confidence
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio says for Pacific people, language can be a source of strength. It can help ground us and give us confidence. When we speak them, our languages provide us with an immediate and intimate access to our identity and our story - and ...
    1 week ago
  • Major boost to support disabled people in sport and recreation
    The Coalition Government has announced an action plan to improve the wellbeing of disabled New Zealanders by addressing inequalities in play, active recreation and sport. The initiative includes training to develop a workforce that understands the needs of children and young people with a range of impairments, advocacy for fit ...
    1 week ago
  • More prefab homes to be built as red tape cut
    The construction sector is being freed up to allow more homes to be built more quickly as the Government cuts through some of the red tape of the Building Act.  “Every New Zealander deserves a warm, dry, safe home and old inefficiencies in the Building Act make building slow and ...
    1 week ago