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Open mike 02/01/2015

Written By: - Date published: 7:30 am, January 2nd, 2015 - 75 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

openmikeThe Authors of the Standard are now in holiday mode. Posting will be less regular and dependant on individual author enthusiasm. Open mike will continue every day and prepare yourself for some year in review posts and some recycling of old stuff. And as R0b has said be nice to each other.

Open mike is your post.

The Standard is not a conspiracy – just a welcome outlet for the expression of views. Leaders that command respect will not be undermined by this.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).

Step up to the mike …

75 comments on “Open mike 02/01/2015”

  1. dv 1

    I had a thought about the mayhem caused by alcohol on the roads, Gisborne etc.

    Charge all alcohol related emergency treatment, policing etc to the alcohol industry.

  2. philj 2

    What ever happened to ‘ user pays’? That was a snow job term, a bit like ‘trickle down’. Lets not forget ‘enhanced interrogation’ . etc.The list is endless ..

  3. philj 3

    What ever happened to ‘ user pays’? That was a snow job term, a bit like ‘trickle down’. Lets not forget ‘enhanced interrogation’ . etc.The list is endless ..

    • vto 3.1

      The deception was that “user pays” was in addition to “everybody pays”, not in replacement as intimated …

      Lesson – do not trust anyone who is imposing extra costs on you.

      • tc 3.1.1

        Yup, you could double the taxes on booze and fags and it still wouldn’t cover the costs to society.

        More private profits with the net public social cost carried by taxpayers.

        • Murray Rawshark 3.1.1.1

          I wouldn’t be surprised if the tax on tobacco more than covered the costs. A lot of the time, people with tobacco related illnesses are refused treatment anyway. I’ve seen people with lung cancer told it’s self inflicted and it’s not worth trying to do anything. It’d be interesting to get hold of the figures.

          • tc 3.1.1.1.1

            You do that and let us know, don’t forget passive smoking related issues.

            • McFlock 3.1.1.1.1.1

              Smokefree reckon $1.7billion in costs.

              They estimate about a billion a year in tax revenue.

              Of 750,000 smokers estimated in that link, about half will die early by about 15-25 years depending on the study. pensions at 65. Let’s say $10,000 per year on a pension. Let’s say life expectancy at 75.
              75-65=10 years not paid out in pensions for half of smokers (let’s under-estimate to 300k smokers).

              300000*10*10,000 = $30billion saved on pensions from the current crop of smokers.

              Now, it seems that at least regarding tobacco, your statement “Yup, you could double the taxes on booze and fags and it still wouldn’t cover the costs to society.” was a bit of a bold case to make.

              On a basic monetary level tobacco users probably subsidise quite a few of their fellow citizens.

              • Murray Rawshark

                Those are rough figures and include pensions as a cost, but they still have some relevance. They don’t surprise me.

                I’ll have a look at how to come up with figures for medical costs, including those of passive smoking. I’m not quite sure how to put them together, or if I have enough time, but I’ll have a go.

      • Draco T Bastard 3.1.2

        User pays was used to tell everyone that it would make everything cheaper because they wouldn’t be paying for what they weren’t using and people bought it. They failed to realise that costs would go up hugely per individual as the costs went from being spread across everyone to only being lumbered on those few who used the service.

        Of course, a lot of those services still got preferential government treatment such as the Rugby Union where cities and government coughed up millions per year in subsidies rather than putting the full costs on the players and spectators because if they did that then rugby would have essentially ceased to exist anywhere but in schools.

        The question is: Which services didn’t and thus disappeared making us all poorer?

        Public transport comes to mind there although it’s still subsidised to a degree it’s not as subsidised as it needs to be.

  4. Saarbo 4

    More National Party propaganda written by John Armstrong (my guess) in todays NZH editorial.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=11380999

    In 2015 the NZ economy will be fuelled by a DEBT driven, over inflated Auckland /Chch housing markets…hardly the stuff to be writing gushing articles like this about. Against this we have the dairy farm collapse…unless there is some catastrophic drought in the US then expect the dairy collapse to carry on through to 2016. There isn’t too much to get excited about in NZ’s economy at the moment.

    • vto 4.1

      John Armstrong is an ignorant fool if he thinks this current “good feel” about the economy is built on anything other than a very typical debt-fuelled speculative housing and farming boom in a couple of main centres, as you point out saarbo.

      John Armstrong exhibits the typical brainless calls that are always heard at the peak of such booms. You would have thought that at his age he would have experienced this phenomenon before and recognise it again now.

      Der.

    • tc 4.2

      Maybe it’s ghost written with JA being attributed as the author, this is the national herald after all.

      Wonder when the framing begins to help out our poor dairy farmers as global conditions continue down the cycle they knew was coming.

      • phillip ure 4.2.1

        i think roughan and/or o’sullivan usually pen those pieces..

        ..and surely some standard-reader will know the definitive answer to that question of ‘who writes all these rightwing editorials’ in/for the herald..?

      • greywarshark 4.2.2

        @ tc
        And those ‘direy farmers’ like Crafar who have played the farm market to its fullest and are now sorrowing at the unfairness of losing what they never had with it all collapsing under its own weight (of unsustainable debt). Meanwhile adding to the farming bubble built on the valuations of farms relying on profits maintained and rising into the future. When all business courses teach that business is cyclical especially commodities.

    • Anne 4.3

      Haven’t read today’s editorial yet, but a common sycophantic, pro-Nat fantasy has been prevalent in the editorials over the Xmas/New Year week. My guess is they are the work of Key’s biggest fan boy, John Roughan who probably penned them all in advance of Xmas.

      • Olwyn 4.3.1

        This was all preceded by a run of happy-happy joy-joy snaps of Key and his family, along with the news that he was spending Christmas at home this year and cooking the turkey himself. It looks to me like a planned deluge of positivity, intended to shore up Key’s “good guy” image, push DP to the background, and reclaim any oxygen stolen by Andrew Little, with his straight talking and his amusing pets.

        • Anne 4.3.1.1

          Here’s the mid Dec. conversation:

          Wayne (Eagleson): Is that you John?

          John (Roughan) : Hello, is that you Wayne?

          Brief round of friendly greetings.

          Wayne: Listen we’ve got a problem. Key is off to LA and Hawaii soon… won’t be back until middle of Jan. That union bastard, Little and his bloody cat are getting too much media attention. We need some good news stories and some happy family framing around Key.

          John: Well, it so happens I’m in charge over the break so don’t worry, I’ll see to it there’s plenty of happy, clappy stories before Xmas and I’m doing the editorials so the news is all good.

          Wayne: Fantastic mate, Key will be bloody relieved. Don’t forget to throw in some more negative stuff about that pest, Hager. We’ll return the favour. Slater and co. are cooking up some more dirt as we speak. You’ll get the first heads-up when we’re ready to go.

          • Olwyn 4.3.1.1.1

            😀 I reckon you’ve caught it in a nutshell, Anne.

          • Murray Rawshark 4.3.1.1.2

            The police will be around shortly to investigate who hacked Eagleson’s cellphone. Really, the fluff and editorial spin are pretty bad at the moment. With luck, FJK’s stupid photo ops with celebrities will come back to bite him as it looks more and more that he’s interested in leveraging the position of PM to be around famous people rather than doing his job. Years ago, Kiwis wouldn’t have put up with that.

            • Anne 4.3.1.1.2.1

              The police will be around shortly to investigate who hacked Eagleson’s cellphone.

              I thought about that. I thought… there’s sure to be some idiot who reads this and thinks it’s for real. Actually I thought of PG. 😯

      • DH 4.3.2

        Roughan is the lead editorial writer for the Herald, they say so in his bio. That one doesn’t read like Roughan to me though, there’s a pompous aura to his editorials & this is more reminiscent of O’Sullivan who tends to be more forthright in her writing style.

        IMO people need to start understanding that editorials are ghost written, the writer might be Roughan but the ‘author’ is the Herald. The word is descriptive, the editorial is from the editor(s) who represent the ‘paper. People who read newspapers tend to take editorials seriously because they’re the view of the ‘neutral’ press; the guardians of justice & democracy.

        In theory the actual writer of an editorial is immaterial because they write what they’ve been told to write. For Roughans own personal views to be expressed in an editorial it would require him to have some considerable authority at the Herald rather than be a paid lackey. Just how much sway he and the likes of O’Sullivan have at the Herald is something that needs investigating IMO.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 5.1

      🙄

      That isn’t what impeccable means.

    • Clemgeopin 5.2

      Seems far fetched and lacks real evidence. But then, we do not know what sort of dirty stuff really goes on in high places! Interesting that he was given such prominence in that meeting.

      • nadis 5.2.1

        Best you look at what the conference was before attaching any significance to it:

        “Sponsored by the Syrian Ministry of Justice”.

        Google “oxymoron” or “hypocrisy” or “war criminal”

        • One Anonymous Bloke 5.2.1.1

          I think Clemgeopin was pointing to the amount of credibility “gained” thereby as a critique of Wairua’s comment.

    • Murray Rawshark 5.3

      Like many things, there’ll be some truth to the stories. Israel does have huge influence on the US Congress, but saying this is due to a crime syndicate operating out of Macau is going a bit far. I strongly suspect that Saudi Arabia played a big part in setting up ISIL, but I wouldn’t exclude Israel. In any case, it’s another one of those things that we might know 50 years from now.

  5. Tautoko Mangō Mata 6

    Gareth Morgan wants the Green Party to ditch their social justice issues and become a solely environmental party so that they can go into coalition with National to hold them to account?!!
    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/political/262899/greens-reject-purely-green-focus
    It seems that he has not made the connection between lack of social justice and environmental degradation. Lack of social justice is a result of power being in the hands of a few exploiting their position without empathy and consideration for other people and very often the environment. Examples like Union Carbide India (Bhopal), sweatshops using vulnerable groups such as illegal immigrants or outsourced in countries with poorer records of human rights require a diminished moral compass which can conveniently pigeonhole social justice and/or the environment as separate issues, to be put aside as irrelevant. Good on the Greens for their stance!

    Pike River is a classic local example of what happens when profit is put ahead of both the environment and social justice. Economic, social justice and environmental issues need to be considered in a holistic fashion. For example, spending more money on supporting education for underprivileged children could lower the prison population costs in later years. Government could provide paid work to support the planting of forests. It seems this government are only interested in immediate economic benefits, however. Offhand I can’t think of any long-term policy beneficial to the environment or social justice that has come from this NAct Government

    • morgan is yr typical rightwing ex-hippie leavened with/steeped in ayn rand…

      ..displaying the deep political/ideological-confusion that they usually do..

      ..he just has more money than most..

        • karol 6.1.1.1

          Thanks, weka. TMM and I posted on this at about the same time – I agree with TMM’s analysis.

          I started writing the post after I heard the audio last night, but was too tired to finish it – had spent some time yesterday walking up and around one of Auckland’s “mountains” – ie hills with a volcanic cone.

  6. Penny Bright 8

    Hi folks! – hope you all had a Happy New Year to start 2015!

    MORE INFO ON WHY I THINK THE PROPOSED WELLINGTON ‘SUPERCITY’ IS A CROCK!

    What do YOU think?

    I have checked through both the Local Government Commission’s ‘Draft Proposal for Reorganisation of Local Government in Wellington – Volume 1 Public Report: Summary document December 2014′ and their Volume 2 Technical report: Evaluation of the options and the draft proposal’.

    In my view – the following summary is extremely misleading:
    http://www.nbr.co.nz/…/4184558DA%20-%20Draft-Proposal-Wellington-Vol..

    The current system of local government

    2.11 Together the councils of Wellington Region have:

    • financial assets valued at $563 million (30 June 2013)

    • investment in physical assets valued at $12.8 billion (30 June 2013)

    • debt totalling $785 million (30 June 2013)

    • forecast debt totalling $1,336 million (by 30 June 2022)

    • eight mayors, ninety-six councillors (including the regional council chair), and 57 community board members

    • full-time equivalent staff totalling 3,256 (April 2014)

    • 321 plans currently produced under the Resource Management Act
    1991, Local Government Act 2002, Land Transport Management Act and Reserves Act.

    2.12 Together the councils of Wellington Region pay:

    • elected member remuneration (including mayors/chair) of $5.3 million per annum (2012/13)

    • chief executive officer remuneration of $2.6 million per annum (2012/13)

    • audit fees for the audit of the 2012-13 annual reports of $1.36 million

    • audit fees for the audit of the 2012-22 long-term plans of $0.863 million.
    __________________________________________________________

    What about Council Controlled Organisations (CCOs) in the Wellington
    region?

    CCOs are NOT ‘local authorities’.

    Where is the ‘devilish detail’ pertaining to CCOs?

    How much do the CEOs of CCOs, and their unelected Boards cost citizens and ratepayers?

    How much do the CCO Executive staff, and ‘non-executive’ staff / temps / consultants / contractors cost?

    How much do the buildings which house the CCOs and their staff cost?

    How many ‘Statement of Intents’ (SOIs)

    What about monies spent on goods and services provided by private sector consultants and contractors throughout the Wellington region?

    How many private sector contracts are there now, providing Council services throughout the Wellington region?

    How much money is being spent on ‘contract management’ by Councils throughout the Wellington region?

    Where is THAT ‘devilish detail’ provided by the Local Government Commission ‘Draft Proposal’?

    (Where was that ‘devilish detail’ provided in any of the preceding reports, including those provided by a number of ‘consultants’?)

    How can citizens and ratepayers make informed submissions on this ‘Draft Proposal’ – when they – in my considered opinion, have not been given ALL the relevant and pertinent FACTS?

    Not to mention – where is the genuinely INDEPENDENT ‘audit’ of the Auckland ‘Supercity (for the 1%) – which was forced upon Auckland regional citizens and ratepayers?

    Seriously?

    Penny Bright
    ‘Anti-corruption whistle-blower’

  7. Penny Bright 9

    Made this rather startling political discovery yesterday, as part of my 2014 Christmas holiday grrly swot:

    How many folks were aware that on 19 September 2011, the Local Government (Auckland Council) Amendment Act was passed -giving Auckland Council the following lawful power and authority?

    “Auckland Council may borrow or enter into incidental arrangements, within or outside New Zealand, in currency other than New Zealand currency.”

    http://www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/2011/0078/latest/versions.aspx

    4 New heading and section 107 inserted

    The following heading and section are inserted after section
    106:

    “Borrowing in foreign currency

    “107 Borrowing in foreign currency

    Despite section 113 of the Local Government Act 2002,the Auckland Council may borrow or enter into incidental arrangements, within or outside New Zealand, in currency other than New Zealand currency.”

    Legislative history

    8 September 2011 Divided from Local Government Borrowing Bill

    (Bill 281–2) by committee of the whole House as Bill 281–3A

    14 September 2011 Third reading

    19 September 2011 Royal assent

    ____________________________________________________________________________________________

    Any Auckland Council citizens and ratepayers remember being consulted on THIS matter?

    Auckland Council citizens and ratepayers – do YOU agree with the proposition that:

    “Auckland Council may borrow or enter into incidental arrangements, within or outside New Zealand, in currency other than New Zealand currency.”

    Which is arguably rather a biggie – given that it is Auckland citizens and ratepayers who are going to be lumbered with paying back this debt?

    Any Auckland Council citizens and ratepayers remember being notified about Select Committee hearings on this Bill, so we could give our views BEFORE this legislation was passed?

    Anyone recall any mainstream media giving any significant coverage to this matter?

    Oh – that’s right – this was prior to the 2011 General Election, and right in the middle of the Rugby World Cup …..

    How convenient.

    Interesting – I’m reasonably well-informed on a lot of matters pertaining to local government – Auckland Council in particular – but I did NOT know that apparently because of the size of the Auckland Council ‘Supercity’ – Auckland Council was given this lawful authority to ‘borrow or enter into incidental arrangements, within or outside New Zealand, in currency other than New Zealand currency’, and is the only Council in New Zealand which has this legislative ability.

    Another reason – folks from the Wellington region – to fight like hell to stop the proposed Wellington ‘Supercity’?

    Pity about the ‘99%’ citizens and ratepayers, who will potentially see a massive transfer of their public rates monies into the hands of the private finance sector, investors, BIG business and property developers?

    ‘Super’ city for whom?

    Follow the dollar …..

    Penny Bright

    ‘Anti-corruption whistle-blower’

    • Sacha 9.1

      The select committee even had a session in Auckland. Some of us submitted. Most people and media did not grasp all the aspects of the legislation drafted by the Nats with the connivance of Rodney Hide and reflecting its delightful parents all too well.

      Allowing Council to secure overseas finance in its own right smooths the path for large PPPs, though otherwise there’s not much difference between that and central government borrowing. Watch for this year’s broader local govt and resource management law changes to really screw things.

      • Penny Bright 9.1.1

        Thank you Sacha.

        Did you make a submission on the Local Government Borrowing Bill, or the local Government (Auckland Council) Amendment Bill?

        Can you remember WHEN you made your submission?

        Cheers!

        Penny Bright

    • Clemgeopin 10.1

      Great comment and a great attitude.

      Funny thing is that a lot of cabinet ministers are not so ‘honourable’ in the first place.

  8. RedBaronCV 11

    And Mike Bush pushing the police agenda in the Herald.

    Police Commissioner on more to come

    My questions are:
    If you are still making large methamphetimine busts could we please have our effective cold remedies back as banning these hasn’t cured the poblem as we were told and we don’t need that sort of NACT nanny state legislation?

    Are we getting a financial contribution from the relevant parties for the royal tour and G20 policing – user pays isn’t it?

    I won’t say anything about the Tuhoe and Crewe investigations – words fail me.

    Putting victims first – by demanding they go to restorative justice whether or not they want too? Plenty of anecdotal evidence and some studies showing negative outcomes for over 50% of voluntary participants (never mind the forced participants).

    20.1 % drop in recorded crime? Well I suppose you could get that if you stopped recording stuff – over half of the 50% of DV callouts are given the wet bus ticket and need I mention the roast busters. Rather than no victims- no trauma do we have undealt to crime – more tramatised and revictimisation?

    If you are so great why hasn’t the police budget dropped 20%?

    High public levels of trust in the police? Lets raid Nicky Hager. You must be kidding – and after the holiday driving tax you will have a whole lot more upset people.

    Oh and they are making our roads safer with the 100km restriction? Really they would do better if they banned trucks/ the rotten hours many truckies work, stopped people driving on the wrong side of the road and banned police car chases.
    Does Mike Bush really believe what he says? Massive denial?

    • Murray Rawshark 11.1

      I think Mike Bush probably does believe what he says. They think differently to civilians. I love your idea about cutting 20% off their budget 🙂

  9. Colonial Viper 12

    Dmitry Orlov: declining western empire “poisoning the wells”

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2015-01-01/imperial-collapse-playbook

    • Colonial Viper 12.1

      but 2015 could be the year the Anglo-imperialist franchise finally starts shutting down in obvious ways. We know it will have to shut down eventually, because failing all the time is not conducive to its survival. The bonus question is, what sort of anti-America will these parasites set up inside America before they abandon their host and scatter to their fortified compounds in undisclosed locations around the world?

      I’m guessing that NZ is going to be a prime destination.

      • Draco T Bastard 12.1.1

        Yep, that’s why they sent their Yes Man, John Key here to set us up to be a poverty stricken nation. They want us to be pliant to being a Banana Republic and, so far, that’s what they’re getting.

        • Colonial Viper 12.1.1.1

          With 50% of NZers scrambling for minimum wage jobs polishing the shoes and vacuuming the Porsches of the new power elite.

    • greywarshark 12.2

      I noticed this piece on older voters. May help us to understand NZ.
      . As for the European Union, the current crop of EU politicians is very much bought and will be paid for upon retirement by the Anglo-imperialists, but the only reason they are still in power is that there are lots of older voters in Western Europe, and older people tend to cling to what they know even after it stops working—for them or, especially, for their kids.
      If it was up to the young people, the Anglo-imperialists would face open rebellion. In fact, the trends in voting patterns show that their departure from the region is a matter of time.

      And then there is this from Vladislav Surkov. It must have been mentioned here and I’ve missed it.
      Sovereign democracy – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
      en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sovereign_democracy
      Sovereign democracy (Russian: суверенная демократия, suveryennaya demokratiya) is a term describing modern Russian politics first used by Vladislav Surkov on 22 February 2006 in a speech before a gathering of the Russian political party United Russia.

      and
      http://eng.globalaffairs.ru/number/n_9123

  10. Ad 13

    ZeroHedge most enjoyable. Cheers.
    But US has retreated from most of south and Central America in the 1990s without much sight of contra-enclaves.
    Nor has the collapse of any other former empire in the previous century.
    The US seems to be adjusting to life beyond imperial dominance pretty happily (outside of Fox News) and it’s military is at least gearing towards proxy wars.

    To me the rise of China and its willingness to accede to global norm (traded currency, climate agreement, free trade agreements) is an assurance that internationalist governance will be sustained just as the US underwrite of such governance fades.

    Zero Hedge just needed to push on a bit:

    sure, the US and allies are shrinking, but statist international order is being sustained just fine. For those non-superstates like NZ, Au, Eire, and the BRICS, that’s dandy.

    Here in Wanaka, in fact, that’s the real sweet spot for the squillionair enclaves of Chinese, Americans, Aucklanders, Germans, and other near-retired foreigners.

    • Colonial Viper 13.1

      But US has retreated from most of south and Central America in the 1990s without much sight of contra-enclaves.

      I think you have skipped over a few decades in order to review the cleaner looking end result. US installed and funded influences were forcibly, slowly and painfully cleared out, over decades, by locals. Venezuela, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Panama all followed this pattern.

      Having said that, US intrusion in the communications of Sth and Central America govts is now more widespread than ever.

      Financial instruments and market forces are also the pressure point of choice for the US in South America nowadays. Argentina and Venezuela are both falling prey to that. The forcing down of Evo Morales’ government jet to look for Ed Snowden was also another message to S.A. leaders by the USA.

      The US seems to be adjusting to life beyond imperial dominance pretty happily (outside of Fox News) and it’s military is at least gearing towards proxy wars.

      Not sure who you are referring to here as “The US” – do you mean the US Govt? The Pentagon? The elite 0.1%? The common US citizen? In my view the common US citizen is bearing the brunt of the “adjusting to life beyond imperial dominance”, it hasn’t really been that happy an adjusment, and it has only just started.

      • Ad 13.1.1

        I mean the US government.

        Just take a step back CV and observe: this transition from US to Chinese hegemony is one of the smoothest on this scale the world’s ever seen. In Cunliffe’s New Lynn electorate, its about 45% Chinese, 15% Indian. And easily 20% over Auckland. It’s happening! And largely it’s what a global sweet spot feels like.

  11. This should cause a flutter in the hearts of many Standard commenters who frequently try to explain that the government can’t actually run out of money 😀

    http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/mar/18/truth-money-iou-bank-of-england-austerity

  12. Penny Bright 15

    Here you go folks – a bit more grrly swot …..

    This is the Hansard record for the Local Government Borrowing Bill, Local Government (Auckland Council) Amendment Bill (No 2)

    Which appears to have had MINIMAL citizen and ratepayer input – given the increased potential for Council debt – for which citizens and ratepayers will be ultimately liable …..?

    http://www.parliament.nz/en-nz/pb/debates/debates/49HansD_20110914_00000792/local-government-borrowing-bill-local-government-auckland

    Local Government Borrowing Bill, Local Government (Auckland Council) Amendment Bill (No 2) — Third Readings

    [Volume:675;Page:21294]

    Local Government Borrowing Bill

    Local Government (Auckland Council) Amendment Bill (No 2)

    Third Readings

    Hon RODNEY HIDE (Minister of Local Government) : I move, That the Local Government Borrowing Bill and the Local Government (Auckland Council) Amendment Bill (No 2) be now read a third time. The purpose of the Local Government Borrowing Bill is to assist local authorities to borrow funds at lower interest rates than they can currently achieve. The bill will achieve this by facilitating the establishment and the operation of the New Zealand Local Government Funding Agency. Local Government New Zealand has estimated that the funding authority will save local government in the order of $25 million each year. The operation of the agency will also strengthen New Zealand’s capital markets by providing a new high-quality investment option. The scheme is a win for local government and a win for investors.

    Unsurprisingly, the bill has a high level of support across the local government sector. I have been advised that around 50 local authorities have indicated that they will participate in this scheme. The bill has also enjoyed a high level of support in the House. No significant amendments have been proposed; technical amendments recommended by the Local Government and Environment Committee to clarify two clauses of the bill have been agreed to.

    The Local Government (Auckland Council) Amendment Bill (No 2) authorises the Auckland Council to borrow in foreign currencies.
    To achieve and maintain a high credit rating the funding agency will not be able to lend disproportionately to one council. Therefore, because of the Auckland Council’s size and its significant borrowing requirements, it will need to continue some borrowing outside the agency. The bill addresses that issue. It effectively gives the Auckland Council the same access to foreign currency markets as other councils will be able to achieve indirectly through the funding agency. Like the funding agency, the Auckland Council will carry out its foreign currency borrowing on a fully hedged basis, avoiding any risk associated with currency movement. It is encouraging to see central and local government working together to achieve cost savings of this magnitude, and savings that will ultimately benefit ratepayers.

    I take this opportunity to thank Local Government New Zealand and the funding agency steering group for all their hard work on this scheme. I particularly thank the president, Lawrence Yule, for his work and also the chief executive, Eugene Bowen. I understand that the funding agency will be up and running either late this year or early next year, so the benefits of the legislation to ratepayers will quickly become evident. Thank you.

    …………………..
    _________________________________________________________

    HISTORY OF THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT BORROWING BILL:

    http://www.parliament.nz/en-nz/pb/legislation/bills/00DBHOH_BILL10590_1/local-government-borrowing-bill

    Local Government Borrowing Bill

    The purpose of the bill is to allow for more cost-effective borrowing by local authorities.

    (Formerly part of Local Government Borrowing Bill)

    Member in charge: Hon Rodney Hide

    Type of bill: Government

    Parliament: 49

    Bill no: 281-3

    Introduction: 6/4/11

    First reading: 17/5/11

    Referred to: Local Government and Environment Committee

    Submissions due: 17/6/11

    SC report(s): 19/7/11

    Second reading: 6/9/11

    Supplementary Order Paper(s): 279

    Divided by committee of the whole House — see Schedule of divided bills

    Third reading: 14/9/11

    Royal assent: 19/9/11

    Act: Local Government Borrowing Act 2011 (11/77)
    ___________________________________________________________________________________________

    You will see that there was only one month to make submissions on this Local Government Borrowing Bill

    17 May 2011 – 17 June 2011.

    There were only 6 submissions received – not ONE from a single citizen and ratepayer?

    FYI – I have provided links to the EVIDENCE provided by each of the 6 organisations which made submissions:

    http://www.parliament.nz/en-nz/pb/sc/documents/evidence?custom=00dbhoh_bill10590_1

    Title Select Committee

    Society of Local Government Managers
    Local Government and Environment Committee 07 Jul 11

    Auckland Council 23 Jun 11

    Auckland Council Supp1 23 Jun 11

    Democrats for Social Credit 23 Jun 11

    Federation of Maori Authorities 23 Jun 11

    Local Government New Zealand 23 Jun 11

    Members of Steering Group representing the 23 Jun 11
    shareholder Councils of the LGFA

    ____________________________________________________________________________________________

    Kind regards

    Penny Bright

    ‘Anti-corruption whistle-blower’

  13. hilarious..!

    ..fat-fuck jeremy ellwood slagging vegans..

    ..on some crap comedy stand-up show..

    ..whereas his animal-fat drenched diet clearly works well for him..eh..?

    ..despite wearing concealing black..

    ..his belly is like a separate entity…

    ..independently moving in the middle of his body..

    ..glass-houses..stones..much..?

    • McFlock 16.1

      I’m sure you think you’re a new Adonis.
      But then Elwood can still string a coherent sentence together.

      • phillip ure 16.1.1

        as can i digger..as can i..

        ..and i have worked/practised hard to learn to..

        ..i think my scorn is also leavened with the general feeling of distaste that comes from listening to elwoods’ serious ‘thoughts’..as expressed on the panel with mora..

        ..there..his/any ability to ‘make coherent sentences’ seems to vanish..

        ..and his politics have you going ‘ew!’..

        ..and no..i am not an ‘adonis’..

        ..but i do experience the physical benefits from a vegan-diet..

        ..as do most vegans..

        ..and i do have biceps and pecs..

        (i have a daily workout routine that takes 10 mins..involving sit-ups and curls..that’s it..)
        10 mins cos ui hate workout routines

        ..(seeing as you asked..)

  14. Murray Rawshark 17

    As usual in the Australian non-ratings season, we get the best tv programs, mostly from back home. Caught the last series of the Almighty Johnsons, which was great. It’s typical of the well written Kiwi tv that’s made without much expenditure and takes its place alongside Outrageous Fortune and Nothing Trivial. My Brazilian wife agrees with me that these are some of the best tv series being made, or no longer being made due to decisions of NZ On Air (or someone). I suppose they need the budget to film FJK playing golf with O’Bomber or something. Anyway, I would have liked it to be called The Almighty Olsens, a much more fitting name for Norse gods, but you can’t always get what you want.

    • i think the english version of ‘would i lie to you?’ is one of the funniest shows around..

      ..mind you..i think panelist david mitchell is a comedy-deity..

      ..if you haven’t read any of his columns..google him..and laugh yrslf silly..

      • Clemgeopin 17.1.1

        Thanks. I had seen him on TV, but did not know he had a column!
        Just googled and found this. Have just read two articles so far. Will read the rest later.

        http://www.theguardian.com/profile/davidmitchell

      • Clemgeopin 17.1.2

        “Twelve more bodies identified as Richard III

        The laboratory that identified the skeleton from under a Leicester car park as the last Plantagenet king was in the spotlight again last spring when 12 more sets of mortal remains, many of them comparatively recently deceased, also tested positive for the crook-backed monarch. “It’s ridiculous – everything keeps coming up ‘Richard III’! There may be something up with our equipment,” chuckled a technician on Newsnight.

        But a spokesman for Leicester University said it was too soon to question the initial findings. “This certainly can’t mean that the first skeleton definitely isn’t Richard III. Maybe the machines are faulty but, still, you know what they say: even a stopped clock…”
        —–

        He is very erudite, clever, witty and so very funny,!

  15. I noticed in the feeds, Open Parachute had the December ’14 NZ blogs sitemeter ranking listed

    The Standard came in third with 182211 visits/month with 392090 Page Views/month

    http://openparachute.wordpress.com/2015/01/01/december-14-nz-blogs-sitemeter-ranking/

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