Open Mike 04/01/2017

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, January 4th, 2017 - 195 comments
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195 comments on “Open Mike 04/01/2017”

  1. Jenny 1

    “I support the rule of international law therefore I recognise the Assad led government as the legitimate sovereign government of Syria,…..

    Colonial Viper


    And there in, lies the difference between a National Socialist, and an International Socialist.

    Never have a couple of syllables held such portent.

    • mikesh 1.1

      There’s nothing like a spot of Godwinism to settle an argument , eh.

    • reason 1.2

      ” the White Helmets in Syria have been filmed on numerous occasions working alongside terrorist groups and that members of the White Helmets have participated in executions, torture, driving vehicles for terrorists, providing propaganda for jihadist groups, conducting false flags and brandishing weapons in combat.”

      “Two young Sunni Syrian soldiers from Aleppo were beaten and executed by Jaish Al Fattah rebels in Aleppo. Jaish Fattah, a coalition of US backed rebel groups and al-Qaeda (Jabhat al- Nusra). The video of the soldiers being humiliated was posted by a member of the White Helmets, which the US supplied $23 million dollars to through the USAID program, as stated by US State Department spokesperson John Kirby”.

      ” In the video a White Helmet member can be seen wearing a White Helmet shirt while conducting operations ‘shoulder to shoulder’ with al-Zinki terrorists. This is the same group that beheaded a 12 year old Palestinian boy in the back of a truck in July 2016. The White Helmet member is visible at the 2:27 mark.

      The u.s.a has a long long history of training and working with the most brutal & perverse killers and death squads in modern history ….. “The UN Truth Commission found that the units guilty of the worst atrocities, like the Atlacatl Battalion which conducted the infamous El Mozote massacre, were precisely the ones most closely supervised by American advisers. The American role in this campaign of state terrorism is now hailed by senior U.S. military officers as a model ….”

      This documentary shows how the savagery they cultivated in South America was brought down on the poor people of Iraq …. Death squads and torture, fueling hatred and helping Isis recruitment

      This doco shows the u.s.a war effort in Afghanistan includes very evil stuff …..such as protecting Local police units which rape and murder young boys, kidnap and rob from civilians, and get off their faces on Heroin while firing machine and other weapons blindly in the direction of children …. ……

      On a slightly more positive note here’s a shorter doco on foreign fighters who have come to help the Kurds in their battle for survival against Isis ….. I do hope the Kurds do not get shafted when peace finally comes …….as they were the first fighters to start inflicting defeats and rolling back Isis.

      Horrible powerful Foreign leaders prepared to extend the fighting until the last Syrian is dead are now the biggest problem in stopping the killing …………

      Syria needs a huge effort for peace and justice ………. not death squads and surface to air missiles in the hands of terrorists ….

      Reconstruction not destruction ….

      • Psycho Milt 1.2.1

        The u.s.a has a long long history of training and working with the most brutal & perverse killers and death squads in modern history …

        Funny you should mention that, as the USA’s appalling activities in central America in the early 1980s were an exact match with CV’s position:

        I support the rule of international law therefore I recognise the Assad led government as the legitimate sovereign government of Syria, and I recognise that the foreign (US/Saudi/Qatar/Turkey) sponsored proxy war against that government as totally illegal.

        Those governments the USA was helping in central America were the “legitimate, sovereign governments” of those countries and the foreign (Soviet Union and China) sponsored proxy wars against those governments were totally illegal. Funnily enough, history isn’t on the side of the USA’s “assistance” of those “legitimate, sovereign governments,” any more than it will be on the side of Russia and Iran’s assistance of the Assad regime.

        • reason

          Have you been hitting yourself in the head with a big thick stupid stick Psycho ? …. are you seriously saying u.s.a sponsored coups make legitimate governments ? ????

          Afghanistan: In the 1980s, the U.S. worked with Pakistan and Saudi Arabia to overthrow Afghanistan’s socialist government.

          Argentina: … soon after the military junta seized power in Argentina. Kissinger explicitly approved the junta’s “dirty war,” in which it eventually killed up to 30,000, most of them young people, and stole 400 children from the families of their murdered parents …

          Brazil: …In 1964, General Castelo Branco led a coup that sparked 20 years of brutal military dictatorship……. Like other victims of U.S.-backed coups in Latin America, the elected President Joao Goulart was a wealthy landowner, not a communist,

          Cambodia:….. When President Nixon ordered the secret and illegal bombing of Cambodia in 1969, American pilots were ordered to falsify their logs to conceal their crimes. They killed at least half a million Cambodians, …. the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency provided the Khmer Rouge with satellite intelligence, while U.S. and British special forces trained them to lay millions of land mines across Western Cambodia which still kill or maim hundreds of people every year.

          Chile: …. After General Pinochet seized power, the CIA kept Chilean officials on its payroll and worked closely with Chile’s DINA intelligence agency as the military government killed thousands of people and jailed and tortured tens of thousands more.

          El Salvador: … “During the morning, they proceeded to interrogate, torture, and execute the men in several locations.[8] Around noon, they began taking the women and older girls in groups, separating them from their children and machinegunning them after raping them.[9] Girls as young as 10 were raped, with soldiers reportedly heard bragging how they especially liked the 12-year-old girls.[10] Finally, they killed the children at first by slitting their throats, then by hanging them from trees, with one child as young as two years old.[11] After killing the entire population, the soldiers set fire to the buildings…….The American role in this campaign of state terrorism is now hailed by senior U.S. military officers as a model for “counter-insurgency” in Colombia and elsewhere as the U.S. war on terror spreads its violence and chaos across the world.

          El Salvador is very closely linked to Iraq …. and the u.s.a trained murder/rape/torture squads almost necessitated a Isis like organization to protect the Sunni population …

          I notice you do not mention anything about possible peace solutions in your reply …. which makes me think you do not really give a stuff about the poor people of Syria …. or Iraq …. or Libya

          War pigs give me the shits ……………

          You could negotiate a Wayne Mapp style trade deal …… This is what he offers from NZ as bargaining chips

          • Psycho Milt

            Have you been hitting yourself in the head with a big thick stupid stick Psycho ? …. are you seriously saying u.s.a sponsored coups make legitimate governments ? ????

            If you try actually reading the comment, it referred to Colonial Viper’s claim that he recognises the Assad regime as the “legitimate, sovereign government” of Syria because international law says it is. International law says a lot of very unpleasant dictatorships have been legitimate, sovereign governments, so if you don’t like CV recognising and supporting them all, take it up with him.

    • Jenny 1.3

      “I support the rule of international law therefore I recognise the Assad led government as the legitimate sovereign government of Syria,…..”
      Colonial Viper

      National Socialists think the sanctity of the nation is sacrosanct.

      International Socialists think the idea of nations is a social construct and of little value.

      National Socialists believe that nation and race are imutable.

      International Socialists believe that concepts like nation and race are fluid and changeable.

      National socialists advocate war to protect the interests of a nation from its (internal, and external) enemies.

      International Socialists advocate the abolition of the nation state, and the end of war.

      John Lennon sang: “Imagine there is no countries” “Nothing to kill or die for”

      But what does all this idealistic theory mean in practice in the real world we live in, where nation states are a political reality?

      Firstly; it means that socialists oppose all wars of imperial invasion and aggression, (like the invasion of Iraq by the US and its allies, for instance).

      Secondly, it means that socialists support all people attempting to libererate themselves from oppression from their own nation state, and support their right to overthrow that state. And also support their right to work with whoever they choose to help them achieve that end.

      The example of Roger Casement comes to mind. Roger Casement was an Irishman who worked for the British Empire in the Foreign Civil Service mainly in Africa for twenty years and even gained a British Knighthood for his work. But over this long period witnessing the affects of imperialism first hand he slowly grew to hate and despise it.

      On returning to his homeland Casement used his diplomatic contacts to get the German Empire, which was at war with the British Empire, to supply the Irish rebels with 20 thousand rifles. Unfortunately in attempting to land these vitally needed arms in Ireland, Casement was captured by the RIC and handed over to the British and was hanged for treason.

      British propaganda depicted Casement as an agent of the Germans. A charge Casement strongly denied in his trial for treason against “The British Crown”.

      The other case that comes to mind is that of the Russian Bolshevik leader VI Lenin. When the 1917 revolt first broke out, Lenin was still in exile in Europe, prevented from traveling to Russia by the French and British allies of the Russian Empire, Lenin made a deal with the Germans, who agreed to transport Lenin through German lines and into Russia. The German interest was to weaken the British and Russian Empires from within. The trade off for Lenin in particular was that he was accused just like Casement was of being a German agent. Lenin was able to stare down these accusations and gained the trust of the Russian people and successfully led the Revolution to its victory over the Russian Tsarist, Lenin;s first move was to pull Russia out of the war, which helped bring that Imperialist conflict to conclusion.

      There was echoes of this propaganda back here in New Zealand. Princess Te Puea was leading her Tainui people in a campaign against conscription for same Imperialist conflict. Te Puea was also accused of being a German agent, on the flimsy evidence that her grandfather was a German. Even though her Granfather had died when Te Puea was still a child.

      So what has all this got to do with Syria and Colonial Viper, which is what I was leading up to?

      CV is comfortable and accepts the fact that the regime of Bashar Assad detains and tortures and kills (in his own words) “scores of Syrians a year”. CV also supports the aerial genocide being carried out by the regime against the Syrian people because he alleges (with little proof) that the regime is the victim of US and NATO invasion and regime change.

      CV condemns and attacks the rebels for accepting money and weapons from some of the funda mentalist Arab States like Saudi Arabia which is allied with the US.

      Singled out by CV and other Assadists for their particular hate, and marked for death, is the volunteer search and rescue organisation known as the White Helmets, because the White Helmets receive funding from US sources.

      This is why I determine Colonial Viper to be a National Socialist or fascist.

      But really he makes this determination for himself.

    • mikesh 2.1

      More Godwinism.
      No doubt there are many good reasons for criticizing Trump, but his apparent intention of establishing a good relationship with Putin is probably worthy of praise.

      • Sanctuary 2.1.1

        Two rightwing strongmen cosying up is hardly worthy of praise. Thinking about Trump’s rapprochement with Putin, it is certainly potentially the death of NATO. NATO, as a German friend of mine put it, is a three leg stool about “…keeping the Germans down, the Americans in and the Russians out”.

        Angela Merkel (who is popular now but will be very harshly judged by history IMHO) wrecked the first leg with her rigid neoliberalism and the turning of the common currency into a giant Ponzi scheme with Germany at the top, in the process destablising the EU (the beginning of the roll for Brexit was the shock amongst both conservative and liberal intellectuals in the UK at the ruthless German crushing of the Greeks. The British have a long romantic attachment to the Greeks and the Aegean from Shelley to Churchill, and being an island they have a long, bloody minded history of not taking orders from continentals) which has made Germany much richer but has badly weakened the EU and therefore NATO as collateral damage. The result of Merkel’s economic policies may be Germany having to confront the Russians alone.

        The election of Trump has at least called the second leg into question. Trump is probably right to question the extension of the US-NATO nuclear guarantee to the Balts and the unstable ex-Warsaw pact countries. Estonia or Bulgaria or Slovakia are not so important to US security as to trigger a nuclear war if attacked by Russia. That has been common sense real politik since Yalta. The Swedes, at least, have worked this out and are reintroducing conscription from 2018. NATO should NEVER have expanded east.

        So all that is left is keeping the Russians out. That is what makes the Baltic countries such a flash point. If Russia can over run those countries Crimea style (About a third of the population of Estonia and half of Latvias is ethnic Russians) with just an ineffectual NATO response, NATO’s credibility will collapse. So if the Americans under Trump won’t defend the Balts, that means the Germans will have to – I see in the 2016 budget they have increased defense spending by 15% and set aside 10 billion Euros for new weapons and another 10 billion for arming neighbours. 4,000 NATO troops are already in Estonia.

        My pick is before the end of the decade is Putin will try in on in a Baltic country, probably Latvia, and the Russians will be easily defeated by the Germans, Germany will form a Nordic alliance (Germany, Denmark, Norway, Finland the Balts and possibly Poland and the Dutch and French) outside NATO and NATO will become a relic.

        • Bill

          Why is an assumption that present day Russia covets “the Baltic” states embedded in your comment Sanctuary? Any, even circumstantial evidence to underpin that?

          btw – I don’t think you can reasonably throw Crimea into the mix (if you were going to) any more than you can throw the US’s major naval base in Bahrain into the mix if looking at US territorial designs. My point being that the US and EU turned a blind eye to a swift military incursion by Saudi Arabia into Bahrain to quell that country’s ‘Arab Spring back in 2011… (whereas Russia didn’t have a proxy to use in Crimea)

          • Sanctuary

            Well, first you should acquaint yourself with a map of the Baltic. Once equipped with this handy tool, I suggest you take a look at how Russia might obtain access to the Baltic sea (let alone further afield), should the entire fucking coastline of it’s near abroad be controlled by it’s rivals.

            Why, pray tell, do you think Putin invaded the Crimea? Because he likes the wine? Or because he wanted to get back the huge ex-Soviet naval base at Sevastopol? What, do you think, is behind Russia playing footsies with the hardline regime in Turkey? I’ll give you a hint: it is wet, salty and runs past Istanbul all the way to the Mediterranean.

            Putin saw the fall of the USSR from the KGB HQ in Dresden, and he drew all the wrong lessons. He is an old school Russian expansionist who has gone back to the autocratic, democracy hating, reactionary Tsarist ways of the past. He wants a new Russian Empire.

            • Bill

              Via both Baltiysk (ice free) and Kronshtadt offer access.

              Crimea was to secure access to the Med just as, from a US perspective, the ‘green lighting’ of Saudi Arabia’s invasion of Bahrain was to secure the 5th Fleet’s base.

              If Russia is to be condemned for ‘playing footsie’ with Turkey, what then of the EU’s courting and what of the fact Turkey’s a NATO member state? The motivations and what not behind those things somehow to be judged differently? If so, why?

              And again, what evidence is there to suggest present day Russia is seeking empire? Is there a shopping list of expansionist invasion and military adventurism I’m not familiar with?

              • Sanctuary

                You, my friend, are a naive fool. This isn’t a zero sum game of equally bad people. Unlike you, I visited Eastern Europe when the Soviet Union controlled it. Trust me, you’ll prefer western liberal democracy and that means supporting those countries that practice it against kleptocrats, thugs and dictators like Putin, Duerte, Erdoğan, Xi Jinping and all the rest of them.

                • Bill

                  Did I voice some preference or hankering to live in a reincarnated USSR?

                  The rest of your comment looks to be wandering towards an intellectual and moral morass. And on another day I’d have ventured, but not today. Gotta be off.

                  Have a good one.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  you’ll prefer western liberal democracy and that means supporting those countries that practice it against klepotcrats, thugs and dictators like Putin

                  The problem being that the countries that are against Putin happen to be controlled by kleptocrats, dictators, and thugs. That’s what Western democracy pretty much means now.

                  Even Ceaser was popular to some degree because the loot that his armies stole from the periphery was reasonably well distributed out in the centre. It’s how empires have always worked and how the US Empire works now.

                • One Two

                  The insult says you are a speculator, a slogger of personal opinion without the confidence

                  Evidence:” Unlike you I visited Eastern Europe….”

                  Trust you or your insult laced opinion?

                  That would be foolishly naive!

          • Psycho Milt

            Why is an assumption that present day Russia covets “the Baltic” states embedded in your comment Sanctuary? Any, even circumstantial evidence to underpin that?

            Er, the last few centuries? The fact that it’s invaded those states twice now to re-incorporate them into the empire? The fact that it colonised them with ethnic Russians to try and overcome the ethnic basis for their independence? The fact that it’s attacked Estonia as recently as 2007? Those seem like pretty strong bases for that assumption to me.

            • Bill

              There was no military ‘attack’ by Russia on Estonia in 2007. And as for equating Tzarsist Russia with the USSR with present day Russia when the comment only referred to current day Russia…as per usual you show yourself up to be an intellectually scoured and deflated sad sac that was only ever full of shit back in your good old days.

              • The 2007 attack was a cyber one, not a military one.

                You seem to be claiming that the fact that both Tsarist Russia and Soviet Russia found the Baltic states to be assets worth having has no bearing on how present-day Russia regards those states. Well, the reasons for wanting them in earlier times still apply now, so historical precedent very much has a bearing on the present-day outlook for those states. The people who live there certainly know it, even if you don’t.

        • Colonial Viper

          Sanctuary, Bill has it right. Why would Russia want to add the resource poor, economically backward and European mindset infested elite of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania to the responsibilities and problems that they currently have internally?

          Russia already has the management problems of 11 time zones and dozens of ethnic groups. Why would Russia want to bother with more.

          • Bill

            Sanctuary, Bill has it right

            Well. As ever CV…as ever 😉

            Actually. Now that I have your attention…remember that stoush over Duterte sanctioning the ‘knocking off’ of drug dealers in the Philippines?

            I came across this interesting and provocative piece by Andre Vltchek. If you’ve never heard of him, he’s no slouch and well regarded if a little bloody angry.

            I highly recommend it for anyone looking to get a handle on both the internal politics of the Philippines and the country’s position on the US, China and Russia.


            • Colonial Viper

              That was some impressive article…read through all of it.

              Social progress is evident in the city of Davao, where Duterte served for 22 years as a mayor. Once a crime-ridden hellhole with collapsed social structure, Davao now is a modern and forward looking city, with relatively good social services and improving infrastructure, as well as new public parks and green areas.

              “So many things got better for the poor people here”, explains the driver, taking me from the Municipality to my hotel. “In just two decades, the city became unrecognizable. We are now proud to be living here.”

              But but but According to WaPo, the NYT, and the Guardian, Duterte is just a MURDEROUS THUG!!! REEEEEEEE!!!

              • Sanctuary

                It is fine to personally throw people out of a helicopter, as long as it isn’t you being thrown, eh CV?


                • Bill

                  Oh the irony.

                  A long and thoughtful piece from a highly regarded source is linked, that in part, speaks directly to that kind of reporting and you throw up…did you even read the article?

                • Colonial Viper

                  It is fine to personally throw people out of a helicopter, as long as it isn’t you being thrown, eh CV?

                  He doesn’t give a damn what some cozy soft in the middle, middle class westerners think about his outrageous mutterings. That’s what I am fine with.

                  Meanwhile a CIA wet team has probably already reconned how they would take him and his lieutenants out.

                  Do you hear that sound? The PR drum beat of western regime change has just ratcheted up tempo.

                  • Sanctuary

                    You must be so unhappy.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      The sooner you figure out that the 21st century is the Eurasian Century, the better I think.

                      The deeply hypocritical transnational corporate Anglo-US empire, will of course remain a *very* powerful player on the international stage.

                      But it can no longer sustain the degree of economic, financial and military power deferential relative to other nations needed to sustain unquestioned hegemonic dominance. (The goal of the New American Century types).

                      It will have to slowly relearn the art of diplomacy and negotiation once again, as opposed to relying on demanding, demeaning, accusatory rhetoric and undemocratic and illegal covert/overt programmes of regime change.

                    • The sooner you figure out that the 21st century is the Eurasian Century, the better I think.

                      Meh. We saw off totalitarianism in the 20th Century and we’ll see off its bastard children this century, no matter how much you’d prefer to see nationalist authoritarianism become the new normal.

                    • One Two []

                      We, we’ll?

                      Who or what are you speaking for?

                      And in case I’m right about your obvious issues…

                      Asia is turning (has turned, it’s done) towards Asia, and quickly demoting relations with the war mongering, exploiting colonial nations to the basement, where they will remain indefinately

                      Will your ‘issues’ allow you to deal with that?

                    • Who or what are you speaking for?

                      I hold no position of authority to speak for anyone. However, I do have a nationality (x two), an ethnicity and a philosophy, all of which are shared by many others I’m entitled to refer to as “we.” I get that authoritarian nationalism is appealing to the loonier fringes of both the right and the left in western democracies, but it’s not appealing to the great majority of us and we’d rather see liberal democracy succeed than be superseded by totalitarian dictatorships like the People’s Republic of China or mafia states like the Russian Federation.

                      Asia is turning (has turned, it’s done) towards Asia, and quickly demoting relations with the war mongering, exploiting colonial nations to the basement, where they will remain indefinately

                      What does that even mean? There are warmongering, exploiting colonial nations in Asia and have been for as long as anyone’s been in a position to write down what’s happening. And which Asia is turning towards Asia? Japan, Taiwan, Singapore and South Korea are effectively western democracies themselves, and most of the south-east Asian countries have a well-justified lack of trust in China. Wishful thinking doesn’t actually get you anywhere.

                  • Sanctuary

                    Actually, taking out people like Duerte is what the CIA exists for. I’d rather have a Western aligned dictator who professed some adherence to norms of decent behaviour in Manila than some crazy old dude who boasts about how many people he has murdered and cuddles up to the equally murderous Xi Jinping. Why? Because having a western aligned dictator in Manila (and Suva, for that matter) keeps the murderous Chinese regime contained that much further away from us.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Colonial, anti-democratic illiberal liberals make me puke.

                      Let’s treat a nation of 100 million Asians like a vassal state colony which exists primarily for our own privileged security and convenience. Fuck their sovereignty and agency.

                      Because, left wing liberal values.

                      Guess what mate, coloured people all over the world have cottoned on to your game.

                      keeps the murderous Chinese regime contained that much further away from us.

                      Tell me, how many poor brown coloured foreigners and Muslims has the Chinese regime murdered over the last 20 years, compared to the deaths caused by the morally precious US-Anglo empire directly and via its proxies?

                      Shall we do a body count? You know, Iraq, Afghanistan, Yemen, Libya, Sudan, Somalia, the list goes on and on.

                      The fucking reeking moral hypocrisy.

                    • One Two

                      I’d rather have a Western aligned dictator who professed some adherence to norms of decent behaviour in Manila

                      Marcos more your preference on behalf of the people in [another]country you don’t live in, and know little to nothing about?

                      It’s not about you or your flacid opinions, Sanctuary

                      They count for nothing, but they do expose you!

                  • millsy

                    They will probably try and launch a people’s revolution and install neo-liberal hatchet man Fidel Ramos as leader or a provisional ‘unity coalition’ to restore order until fresh elections are called with suitably screened elitist candidates.

              • millsy

                Not mentioned in the media is the fact that Duterte wasnts to emulate the Cuban healthcare system, give out free contraceptives, strengthen LGBT rights, opposes mining, etc.

                And let’s face it, if someone in NZ promised to send the army into South Auckland or Murupara and execute every P dealer and gang kingpin I guarantee you they will win election after election.

              • McFlock

                Got halfway through that article.

                The whitewashing of the sudden increase in deaths of suspects was pretty vile: a combination of “can’t prove nuffin'”, “what about their victims”, and “the ends justify the means”.

                Nowhere was there actually a denial that murder was now government policy.

            • Draco T Bastard

              Seems that the reason that the West is attacking Duterte is because he’s actually bringing prosperity to the people by displacing the rich.

        • mikesh

          I don’t think that “establishing a good relationship” is quite the same as the more perjoritive term “cosying up”. And ” strongmen” also seems somewhat loaded.

      • Bill 2.1.2

        More (though not) ‘Goldstein’ than Godwin I’d have thought. 😉

  2. HDCAFriendlyTroll 3

    Donald Trump, greatest American president since Reagan, puts North Korea on notice:

  3. greg 4

    take a look at this chart from the telegraph nz tops the list for most expensive houses

  4. greg 5

    take a look at this chart from the telegraph nz tops the list for most expensive houses

    • Carolyn_nth 5.1

      And the downside of this over-priced market, is people not being able to afford places to live. Rents for safe, secure, affordable housing are above many people’s financial capabilities.

      Last night TV1 News had an item about a man in his 80s leaving a sub-standard rental in Auckland. Video and print report here.

      I suspect it was Phil Twyford who went to the media on this as he features in the story.

      Frederick Shimmen has left his rental of six months in the city’s west fearing for his own safety.

      “Health wise, safety wise, it’s not acceptable not in this day and age in this country,” says Mr Shimmen.

      Mr Shimmen, a navy veteran, was paying $120 per week for a room which is part of a shed containing cooking, toilet and washing facilities for those also living in two buses and a caravan on the site.

      He decided to leave this week, increasingly worried by the recent arrival of even more tenants.

      “The set up for the lighting of the buses, all just extension cords, holes in the floors, an outdoor toilet. When the wind blows and the rain, it would all come in,” says Mr Shimmen.

      Local MP and Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says Mr Shimmen’s situation is not out of the ordinary.

      “There are thousands of people in this situation find themselves living in the most appalling slum conditions. It just shouldn’t be allowed to happen,” he says.

  5. Penny Bright 6

    There is another side to the story about the alleged harassment of Suzette Maree Dawson.

    Have you seen this?


    “WELL is this ever an exercise in self promotion / sensationalism , I was most interested to read the words on her scoop post

    “The targeting of Ms Dawson led to serious threats against and endangerment of her life and those of her children.”

    suddenly I connected the two and indeed in early 2013 I had had dealings with one and the same Ms Dawson when she published defamatory and blatantly incorrect material about me and I simply asked her to remove it from her blog and when I was ignored served a notice on her as required by the act.

    I had phoned her as first point of contact and her daughter had answered the phone, I asked for Suzie Dawson and when she got on the phone she hurled a barrage of abuse at me and a claim that I was stalking her.

    Eventually she did remove the material from her post but it wold appear that she also made a false complaint that I was stalking her.

    Knowing what I know about Suzie Dawson and having interacted with her, I do hope that she gets asylum in Russia and may her stay be a lengthy one.

    I personally would not believe a thing she says as to me ,on the evidence I have, I can conclude that she is prone to gross exaggeration and paranoia.

    She calls herself a journalist but she is not one.

    If she is one of the 88 new Zealanders the government is looking at then the government is wasting tax payers funds, it is my opinion that she does nothing more than regurgitates information which she finds on the web and publishes as her own.

    Please don’t give her money , in doing so you will be supporting a potential fraud. her web sites are ,,,www.,,,, ,, redstar309z, @endarken

    [deleted, content is in link supplied by Sacha below]

    [learn how to attribute properly and how to make it clear what are your words and what are a quote. Your comment was a nightmare to read on a phone. Count this as a warning – weka]

    • Sacha 6.1

      Copy and paste of an entire blogpost from here:

      I note that the site has no relationship with the recognised organisation Transparency International New Zealand.

      • Penny Bright 6.1.1

        Exactly right Sacha.

        THIS website actually helps expose corruption.

        Have you been following the recent investigative articles in the NBR about corruption in the NZ roading industry?

        You may find them interesting.

        Also – the 225 page Judgment of Justice Sally Fitzgerald in the recent bribery and corruption conviction of two (former) Auckland Transport officials and one corrupt contractor, is a fascinating read, in my opinion.

        Kind regards

        Penny Bright

        ‘Anti-corruption campaigner’

        2017 Mt Albert by-election Independent candidate.

        • Sacha

          The website seems somewhat feverish at first glance. And no, I do not have a subscription to NBR.

          From my reading of the full judgement so far, the successful prosecution hinged on properly maintained public records (falsely-completed Conflict of Interest forms).

          • lprent

            It is pretty typical over the end of the holiday period and even more so when coming into an election year. It always get a bit crazy and I start doing more moderation to stop the bad behaviors on the site from going exponential..

            (counts on his fingers – 2008, 2011, 2014, and 2017 yep… The site went public in August 2007)

            This is my 9th new year on the site and 4th time coming into an election. I’m getting pretty familiar with the patterns now.

            • Sacha

              I was talking about the site Penny pasted a post from. 🙂

              • lprent

                You know what I am like and what the policy states. If it is about this site (or is ambiguous about which site), then the sysop (me) is likely to notice it and sometimes answer.

    • Adrian Thornton 6.2

      @Penny Bright Why do you insist on dragging this sad story onto today’s open mike?
      Please refrain from having us endure any more of this very tragic non news.
      And if you can’t control your urge to bang on about it, why not at least use the post that was actually about it….

      The return of Kim Dotcom and the Internet Party and the NZ journalist seeking asylum in Russia

      Anyone who might be interested in train wrecks can then follow it there.

    • James 6.3

      if it helps penny – I’m sure just as many people trust and believe Suzie as they do yourself.

      • Penny Bright 6.3.1

        Hopefully those who can think and research for themselves will not be sucked in by, in my view, the phoney Suzette Maree Dawson?

        In my view – I’d think very carefully before sending Suzette Maree Dawson any money.

        Up to you.

        Kind regards

        Penny Bright

      • Nick 6.3.2

        @James ….although more believe Penny than you James.

    • Xanthe 6.4

      Funny thing, i had never heard of suzie until yesterdays post, I followed up the links and watched her person of interest video, I found it all interesting but was feeling that perhaps she was maby slightly over egging it,….. then penny and others started in with the organised character assisination and i realised she was not. Penny your posts yesterday and today have convinced me that suzie is genuine and you are a bitter old piece of ….

  6. Sanctuary 7

    This whole business regarding Suzie Dawson is crazy conspiracy theory stuff peddled by societies fringe merchants and the left does itself no favours by entertaining any sort of debate on their innuendos and paranoid insinuations. We need to be focussing on the main enemy, triumphant neo-fascism, not faffing around with the delusions of the activist far fringe.

    The left’s mission in 2017 is to ensure it rebrands itself well away from the elitist scam that is liberal identity politics and establishes a persuasive narrative that offers a clear alternative to right wing populism. The left devoting its time to the various conspiratorial combinations of the likes of Bradbury, Dawson or Penny Bright is simply to indulge in a distraction from the fringes that it can ill afford to concern itself with and definitely cannot afford to allow itself to be associated with if it wants to be taken seriously.

    If “2TB of explosive data” exists, release it and let it be judged. Otherwise, i don’t see any need for the left to bother itself any further with this ridiculous diversion.

    • Carolyn_nth 7.1

      “rebranding” is the language and MO of neoliberalism and superficial marketing exercises.

      The left needs to regroup and re-build with a strong focus on both the current context and the past histories of the left and society – and by left, I mean the flax roots left, and not something led from above by political parties.

      For me, this means engaging with and listening to the flax roots groups; aiming for a collaborative approach between groups within the broader left; acknowledging and discussing differences, while embracing things/actions on which we agree.

      • Sanctuary 7.1.1

        Please, spare me your nit picking rubbish.

        • Red

          Poor old Carolyn trying to para phrase a hipster anarchist, out with old hierarchy in with horizontal decision making and society, meaningless, do nothing, talkfest clap trap, everyone at cross purposes, reason occupy movement lasted all of one summer

          • Carolyn_nth

            Ah, not really. I had in mind something in between anarchism, and a totally autocratic left where some group with the most political power on the left dictates what the left stands for.

            The latter has been the case of Labour parties internationally during the neoliberal era.

            The future direction of the left, IMO, needs to come from the people – and there does need to be more collaboration between left groups. But that doesn’t mean each group will be into leaderless structures – some will be, but others will have a more formal structure. Some will be trade unions, some will be green campaigners – with some ideas arising out of actions. So not just a talk-fest, either.

            Some examples: the Glenn Innes state house campaign, Pike River protests, campaigns by unions for a living wage, Green Peace protests against fossil fuel companies’ activities, etc – basically a broad left where people on the ground generate ideas, some of it coming through action.

            • Red

              All good to the productive side of society tell them to take a running jump or these is nothing left to redistribute

  7. HDCAFriendlyTroll 8

    “The left’s mission in 2017 is to ensure it rebrands itself well away from the elitist scam that is liberal identity politics and establishes a persuasive narrative that offers a clear alternative to right wing populism.”

    Short version: FFS stop the craziness and come up with something that works.

  8. Sanctuary 9

    Someone should tell Chris Trotter to stop posting before the prozac kicks in, his latest bit of depressed nonsense shows an aging man completely out of touch with anyone on the political left who doesn’t still brood about the Douglas era. Seriously, the left ought to tell him it is over having a Greek chorus of crusty old defeatist Cassandras wailing about what awful fate awaits us.

    Chris needs to get out there and meet someone on the active left under 30, it’ll do his dreary old heart the world of good. Why, he might even open the curtains and clean up some cobwebs in his intellectual world view.

    • James 9.1

      Mental health issues like depression are serious and impact the lives of many. It shouldn’t be used as an insult or false claim in reply to someone who writes something you disagree with.

      • Sanctuary 9.1.1

        PC trolling and attempted derailing fail.

        • James

          As someone who is had a family member with depression and some other issues – it’s something I’ve always taken seriously- so not a concerned troll on this matter. And hey – if you think it’s ok to joke about it – then that says more about you than anything else.

          • Muttonbird

            What do you think of the current government’s underfunding and running down of mental health services?

    • Bill 9.2

      Kind of misses the point that if 2016 delivered us the spectacle of liberalism squirming and screaming, then 2017 might (hopefully from my perspective) deliver us its death rattle.

      Apart from that ‘mere detail’, his musings on NZ positioning regards US and China aren’t so unreasonable. The myopia on display with regards the machinations of various dull NZ political actors is kind of dim. But like I say, he assumes a continuation of this somewhat discredited and untrusted status quo that many of us, it has to be said, are now merely enduring.

    • Carolyn_nth 9.3

      Most often these annual predictions say more about the predictors than about what will actually happen.

      I do think he is right, though, that the current NZ government will face a conflict between their commercial/financial support for China and intelligence/military allegiance to the US.

    • JanM 9.4

      Yes – he appears absolutely fixated, doesn’t he – and his attitude to Andrew Little is so negative you’d have to start suspecting it’s personal!

      • Anne 9.4.1

        I’m picking Andrew Little didn’t fall over in his haste to kiss Trotter’s anointed feet at some point in time…

        • Carolyn_nth

          I think there is a possibility of a Nat-NZF-Mp coalition alliance forming the next government – but that is one of the possibilities. Trotter seems to be one of those uncritically praising Zoe Swarbrick.

          • Penny Bright

            It’s Chloe Swarbrick.

            Who supports privatisation via Public-Private-Partnerships (PPPs).

            Since when has it been ‘left’ to support privatisation via PPPs?

            Is this now Green Party policy?

            Penny Bright

            Who has actively opposed privatisation via PPPs for years.

            2017 Mt Albert by-election Independent candidate.

            [lprent: Didn’t I see an identical comment yesterday? Use your brain Penny. Do that too often and I will ban you for being a parrot trolling. ]

            • Penny Bright

              Do folks not ‘get’ just how vulnerable this National Government is on the issue of corruption?

              Do folks not get how potentially HUGE the issue of corruption is going to be over these next two months?

              31 January 2017

              Transparency International 2016 ‘Corruption Perception Index’ is published.

              In my considered opinion, New Zealand will continue to slide down this scale.

              22 February 2017, the corrupt ‘public official’ and corrupt contractor will be sentenced in the Auckland High Court.

              I predict that both these ‘white collar’ criminals will receive ‘blue collar’ sentences, and both will be sentenced to jail for at least 2 years.

              25 February 2017 – the date of the Mt Albert by-election.

              In between – I predict more publicity on corruption, as more ‘whistle-blowers’ come forward, and more politically ‘dynamite’ OIA information is revealed regarding corrupt ‘conflicts of interest’.

              In between – I shall be addressing the Auckland Transport Board, where I hope to encourage them to comply with their statutory duties arising from the Public Records Act 2005, and provide the details of ALL awarded contracts, including all those sub-contracted, and those worth less than $50,000.

              Once AT provide that information – there will be no excuse for Auckland Council, or other Council-Controlled Organisations (CCOs) to equally provide this information.

              There will be other Auckland Council meetings at which these issues will be raised.

              The sooner other political parties ‘pick up the ball’ on this issue – the better.


              Because the contracting out (privatisation) of public services formerly provided ‘in house’ has been proven to be TWICE as expensive.


              “Bad Business: Billions of Taxpayer Dollars Wasted on Hiring Contractors”

              Not to mention to have helped ‘breed’ corruption, as has been categorically proven in the above-mentioned recent High Court decision.

              Penny Bright

              2017 Mt Albert by-election Independent candidate.

          • Sanctuary

            It isn’t a possibility, it is the most likely outcome. Everyone is going to get a shock at NZ First’s support in the provinces next election. National have used massed immigration to juke the GDP figures, a policy they neither campaigned on or consulted the public on. As in Europe and the USA, the use of a globalised Labour market to repress the pay of the local wage class will become an election issue (albeit framed through a lens of anti-immigration) that will totally blindside the insulated liberal elites of the media establishment, and mark the beginning of the end of neoliberalism in its current form.

            So what will happen here will be the same political outcome as the UK after Brexit. The right wing ruling class that dominate the establishment right wing political vehicle (here, the National party) with use the populist right as an excuse to pivot harder to the right while using populist anti-foreign sentiment as a smoke screen. In the short term, this will shore up the wealth and power grab of the local 1% elites but the long term result will be much more political polarisation and political destabilisation.

          • Sacha

            ” Trotter seems to be one of those uncritically praising Zoe Swarbrick.”

            Trotter lazily continues the assumption that people who voted Chloe for Mayor were young. He’s not “praising” her, just presuming her base and mistaking quite how many are put off by mouthy old men with moustaches and leather jackets.

            • Sanctuary

              “… mistaking quite how many are put off by mouthy old men with moustaches and leather jackets….”

              Ah, the quote of the day.

      • Gabby 9.4.2

        He might think Andy is an actual uncouth grubby-fingernailed worker-type person.

    • james 9.5

      Thanks for the link – I particularly liked this part:

      “It is, however, highly doubtful that sufficient young people will participate in the 2017 general election to significantly offset the emotionally powerful appeal of an unabashedly nationalistic, Sinophobic and pro-American coalition of National, NZ First and the Maori Party. Neither conservative fish nor progressive fowl, Labour is likely to see its party vote plummet into the teens – and with it any hope of reclaiming major party status. The baton of progressive politics will pass to the Greens. Real political power, however, will remain with the National Party and its allies.”

      NZ First with National – which I have said several times. and Labour plummeting – although he sees it being worse (for them) than I expect – I do hope he is right.

      This could be the year that the Greens really start looking like the main party of the left.

      I pick Little will not look back on the MOU fondly.

    • Peter 9.6

      Totally agree with Chris, I think Labour lost its heart in 1984
      and has never found it’s way back.

      • Penny Bright 9.6.1


        ‘Blowing the whistle’ against privatisation via Public-Private-Partnerships (PPPs) and corruption, is not an easy task 🙂

        But imagine the HARD questions I’ll be able to ask in the House, if electors in the Mt Albert electorate ‘seize the moment’ and give this Government a message against against corruption, and for transparency in the spending of public monies, that simply can’t be ignored?

        (Upon which none of the other ‘declared’ candidates have (yet) made a stand?)

        Kind regards

        Penny Bright

        2017 Mt Albert by-election Independent candidate.

  9. Morrissey 10

    The foul spirit of “Sir” Paul Holmes lives on:
    Is the Mad Butcher going to run for ACT this year?

    If you can force yourself to the end of this article, you’ll find the old fool says:

    “The irony is that I was with my own granddaughter, who is herself of Ngapuhi heritage.”

    That’s exactly the same argument that Cameron Slater wheels out whenever he is nailed as a racist: how can I be racist, he whines, when I was born in Fiji and my father is dating a woman from the Philippines?

    Mad Butcher Sir Peter Leitch says Waiheke Island comments weren’t racist but ‘misinterpreted’ after woman’s video goes viral
    New Zealand Herald, Wednesday 4 January 2017

    Sir Peter Leitch says a woman “misinterpreted some light-hearted banter” after she claimed he made racist remarks yesterday.

    Auckland woman Lara Bridger posted a video on social media this afternoon claiming Sir Peter – the Mad Butcher – told her Waiheke Island was a “white man’s island”.

    She last night took down the video, saying “people were going a bit overboard with threats and racist comments” at Sir Peter in response to her post.

    The 23-year-old Maori woman said she was wine tasting with her mother and sister at Stonyridge Vineyard when they spotted Sir Peter eating lunch with his family.

    The group waved to him before heading outside, she said.

    She says Sir Peter came out and approached them and began making conversation.

    Bridger said Sir Peter had warned the group not to drink and drive before going on to say they must not be local.

    “I go ‘Yeah, I’m actually born here’. That’s when he said ‘Well this is a white man’s island and you should acknowledge that’,” she said. ….

    Read more about this sad old racist if you can bear it….

    • Wellfedweta 10.1

      Before rushing to judgement, it would pay to look a little deeper than a single Herald article. There are other accounts that paint a very different picture to the one in the Herald.

      • james 10.1.1

        but he is a successful, rich, white male – of course hes racist and lives off the blood of others. /sarc.

        Hes the perfect target – apart from the fact he’s about as far from racist as you can get (imo) – Ive bet the guy a dozen or so times.

        • mauī

          So he didn’t make a racist jibe to a family that he knew were Māori?

          • james

            I think that the context impacts on this – and that is being completely overlooked by people who want it to be racist.

            • mauī

              I’m struggling to think of an appropriate context for his comments..

              • wellfedweta

                My point is – do you know what both parties actually said? I have heard reports she said she was ‘Tangata Whenua’ in response to his question about their drinking and driving. If that is the case, his response is entirely appropriate. In fact she’s playing the race card by claiming exemption from the law for being Maori.

                I have also heard reports that she approached him, not the other way around.

                Also, have you seen the full version of her video? I have, and frankly it paints her as pathetic. No wonder she took it down.

                • mauī

                  Both parties agree that the “white man’s island” comments were said. They disagree on the “tangata whenua” ones. But I wouldn’t pick you to try and provide an honest depiction of events.

    • JanM 10.2

      Another patronising old git doing his ‘born to rule’ thing 🙁

    • Sam C 10.3

      What an absolute load of shit this is.

      If you look at her video (since deleted as she probably woke up with a hangover and was mortified), it is clear for all to see that she is hammered and having a crack for the sake of having a crack.

      Silly little girl. Why the Herald has to chase this sort of nonsense is completely beyond me.

      • Carolyn_nth 10.3.1

        It got a lot of attention on twitter and facebook last night. I was waiting to hear what Mr Leitch had to say before jumping to conclusions.

        Several MSM outlets covered it, including RNZ.

        It’s a pretty weak defense to say that calling Waiheke (such a Pākehā name?) Island a “white man’s island” was a joke – light hearted banter.

        This morning on Summer Report, Mihingarangi Forbes ‘ report on it included a clip from the original FB video Forbes ended by adding some context: basically, there’s many Māori and Pākehā feeling pushed off the island because of increased gentrification. I can see how that would cause some ill-feeling towards some of the wealthy incomers.

        • Sam C

          Yeah, Mihi Forbes is really objective when it comes to Maori issues. She’s perpetually offended, poor mite.

          • Carolyn_nth

            Actually, it was a pretty balanced report. If you listen, she says both sides give a different description of what happened. She is trying to get an interview with Leitch, and is hopeful of one this afternoon.

          • Morrissey

            If you had the slightest knowledge of this country’s past, you’d be perpetually offended, too.

            Could I suggest you lay off the internet and set aside a few days for reading—serious reading, not the Herald—instead?

            There’s a good fellow.

        • wellfedweta

          The assertion that he said Waiheke was a ‘white man’s Island’ is disputed. SPL claims he said white man’s law applied to Waiheke after she claimed she was ‘Tangata Whenua’ (the implication being she was above the law).

      • mauī 10.3.2

        What video were you watching?? Nice victim blaming there.

        • Sam C

          The one she posted on Facebook and has since been removed (I wonder why). Where she says “fuck” 20 times in the first three minutes of her rant. Potty mouth. “Victim blaming”. Whatever.

      • Wensleydale 10.3.3

        It’s what they do these days. In lieu of real journalism.

        • Colonial Viper

          BOOOM. Who the frak cares what a possibly out of touch 0.1%’er “Sir Peter” might or might not have said. Just another instance of the Herald distracting from the real issues facing the people of Waiheke. But, certain types have to get wound up over someone’s supposed a-hole comments.

          Carolyn_nth got it by commenting on the underlying context by Forbes:

          basically, there’s many Māori and Pākehā feeling pushed off the island because of increased gentrification. I can see how that would cause some ill-feeling towards some of the wealthy incomers.

          • millsy

            It has gentrified pretty quickly in the past 20 or so years.

            In 1999-2000 I was penpals (yes they were still a thing that recently) with a young lady who lived there. She was pretty much an average kiwi who had an average upbrining like myself, and from what she told me, her mates were all the same.

            Nowadays, I cannot help but thinking all the 19-20 year olds up there are all rich kids.

      • Banjo 10.3.4

        I watched the video and didn’t consider her to be “hammered” at all. She was upset yes, not sure why you have jumped to the conclusion she was drunk. She has explained the reason why she removed the video, her explanation is vastly different from your factually devoid assumption. I also didn’t see a “silly little girl” as you have patronisingly labeled her. Maybe it’s just you having a crack for the sake of having a crack.

      • repateet 10.3.5

        The Herald chasing that sort of nonsense is completely beyond you? They will be disappointed it wasn’t an All Black and the exchange wasn’t in a toilet for the disabled.

        • Morrissey

          Aaron Smith’s ridiculous little peccadillo was consensual. In stark contrast to that, no one gave this old fool consent to make racist remarks.

          • Pete

            And everyone has consent, through freedom to comment, on what happened, what was said and make conclusions.

            The only ones who know exactly what was said were those who were there. They also are the only ones who know the order of what was said, by whom, the tones of voices and the postures and other body language. All of those are pertinent to the interaction. All of those are part of the conversation not just the words.

            And the people there, minutes afterwards, undoubtedly would not have been able to give exact accounts of what happened. The basis of points of views in the wider world then becomes supposition, suspicion, and motivation. And ignorance.

            Which ends in a neat and tidy “an old fool making racist remarks.”

            My comment was about the Herald only being interested in the incident for its potential to be sensational. Its potential to be sensationalised is based on there bits of information, different perspectives of the incident, emotion and jumping to conclusions.

            For all the complaints about the Herald they deserve credit for knowing what the market is. (I look at their site. I most definitely refused to play their game by clicking on that story.)

    • millsy 10.4

      ..”She says Sir Peter came out and approached them and began making conversation.

      Bridger said Sir Peter had warned the group not to drink and drive before going on to say they must not be local.

      “I go ‘Yeah, I’m actually born here’. That’s when he said ‘Well this is a white man’s island and you should acknowledge that’,” she said. ….”

      If this comment doesn’t have a sinister tone to it, then I do not know what is.

      • Pete 10.4.1

        “She says.”

        If that comment doesn’t have a sinister tone to it, then I do not know what is.

    • Muttonbird 10.5

      Noted National Party stalwart Michelle Boag reckons Leitch can’t have been racist because Bridger is, “barely coffee coloured”.

      Now that is racist.

  10. james 11

    A racist is a racist – here are some comments from brown-buttabean on how he as a person has been treated by Leitch – actions speak louder than someone moaning on factbook:

    “As i said last night on Facebook @sirmadbutcher has done a lot for me and others . I’ve been busy organising wedding and I’ve missed all this mad butcher stuff. All I will say is he’s always been good to me and has supported a lot of south Auckland Polynesian and Maori athletes and league clubs since I was a young in . These are not the actions of a racists person . I might piss some people off but that’s how I feel . I train his grand son and am friends with his daughter and son in law . They have even let us use their house as part of our wedding . I’ll leave you all with a couple of verses to reflect on – Proverbs 10:12English Standard Version (ESV) 12 Hatred stirs up strife, but love covers all offenses. Romans 3:23 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, Stay safe team and God bless #teambuttabean”

    isnt it terrible how this “racist” does a lot for people – regardless of their colour. supports Polynesian and Maori athletes, and lends his house to someone who is brown for part of their wedding.

    No you are right – someone posted something on facebook – lets hang him. /sarc

    • JanM 11.1

      “A racist is a racist” – true, but obviously not recognised as such by some of us. Patronising jokes ( the sexist equivalent is Key’s ponytail incident) designed, perhaps subconsciously, to humiliate in order to feel superior are a part of what I’d call ‘casual racism’. It is common for people to offer charity to those they see as inherently inferior.
      There is also (and probably always was) some sexism creeping into this argument. The victim blaming thing that’s going on is the old ‘she asked for it’ argument that is too often a feature of rape trials and the like.

      • wellfedweta 11.1.1

        ‘Victim blaming’ is a label designed to stop any questioning of the alleged victim. This lady has made some serious accusations. Her story has been told in a very visceral and public manner. That was her choice. Now her story, and her credibility with it, needs to be questioned so we can know the truth.

        • mauī

          You’re not interested in the truth.

          • wellfedweta

            Read my response to your previous post. You clearly aren’t even looking for the truth here.

        • JanM

          It’s designed to stop investigation of the incident and destroy the person reporting it. It may be used in a valid way to tease out the truth, but is more often misused as power play. In this case there is no need, as there seems to be ample evidence

          • wellfedweta

            Evidence of what? The evidence seems to me to be of two slightly differing accounts of a brief conversation that one party has decided to publish via social media.

      • Morrissey 11.1.2

        This is not the first time Leitch has angered people on this forum….

        Open mike 26/04/2013

        • Red

          Many on this forum seek outrage and offence to simply justify the world as they see it, not what it is The mad butcher in context of his life is clearly not a racist and to justify as such on the testimony of a silly little hyper sensitive and slightly thick snow flake says more about Milsy and company than Peter Leitch

          • Morrissey

            Many on this forum seek outrage and offence to simply justify the world as they see it, not what it is

            ??? What does that MEAN?

            The mad butcher in context of his life is clearly not a racist…

            So why did he do his Paul Holmes impression on Waiheke Island?

          • Wensleydale

            Leitch’s most grievous error is having a shrieking loon like Michelle Boag as his PR person. I mean, of all the possible candidates… Boag? It’s like Pope Francis selecting as his spokesperson the reanimated corpse of Tomas de Torquemada.

    • millsy 11.2

      Maori/Polys are OK as long as they stay in South Auckland where they belong, and not venture over to the white mans paradise of Waiheke Island.

      I think that was what Sir Mad Butcher was inferring. Though I have the feeling he should have just said ‘rich man’s island’. Would have saved him a lot of bother.

      • JanM 11.2.1

        I think Te Ururoa Flavell has nailed this rather well (from Stuff)
        “Maori Party co-leader Te Ururoa Flavell said he respected Leitch for the work he has done benefiting Maori and Pacific Island communities.

        But he said he also respected Bridger for speaking out on what she believed was offensive.

        “What this incident highlights is that despite there being no intention to cause offence, it has,” he said.

        “The lesson here is no matter how you dress it up, making comments directed at someone else because of their ethnicity is racist and you’ll be called on it.

        “For that, we respect the actions of the young woman and her whanau, who have made their point and who now wish to move on.”

        • Red

          Bollocks you don’t have the right to slander somebody on a public medium that 100000 people read because you choose to be offended Leitch should sue her for every thing she has if not to just to put the snow flake generation in thier place what you can and can’t say on line Can you imagine if the herald or TV one made such and accusation. This should have been dealt with privately been a private conversation and obviously the two groups miss communicating with no malice at least on the side of one party

          • JanM

            Sadly, Red, I don’t think you have the faintest idea what you’re talking about

            • Red

              Really Jan, can I suggest you engage your little wee brain a bit deeper beyond the immediate topic and ask yourself if some one posted and accusation in a public forum (face book) about you that you felt slandered your good name that 100000 people read , you don’t think you would have a civil case for slander

              • Carolyn_nth

                I don’t think there’s a law about slander in NZ. It’s defamation.

                But one element that needs to be proved is that the statement was untrue. Leitch has agreed he said Waiheke is a “white man’s island”. The two people differ as to the intent of the statement.

                A defense against being charged with defamation is that the person stated something as an “honest opinion”. That does seem to be the case with respect to the woman.

            • Morrissey

              Hear, hear.

    • Morrissey 11.3

      Brown Buttabean is, as his fatuous nickname suggests, a bit of an idiot.

      • james 11.3.1

        Do you disagree with his comments – most of them are easily provable facts.

        Shutting down someone you disagree with by calling him an idiot just shows you as someone with a bias and a chip on their shoulder.

        • ropata

          The lesson from all this is that it is impossible for someone to do good things AND sometimes do stupid things. You are either a perfect saint or a filthy sinner, there is no middle ground to be a human.

          What a stupid piece of clickbait

  11. Morrissey 13

    “Uh, Matt, I’m not going to get into colloquy on this one.”
    The U.S. has been mocking democracy long before Trump oozed into power.

    Contrary to what you might think, there ARE some intelligent and ethical reporters in the United States. One of the best is the indomitable Matt Lee of the Associated Press….

  12. Morrissey 14

    Thinking back to a happier time, when Jenny and the rest of us
    were all on the same page. Four long years ago….

    Open mike 26/04/2013

  13. Sanctuary 15

    “…Colonial, anti-democratic illiberal liberals make me puke…”

    Well then CV you picked a pretty stupid country to live in then, didn’t you. Perhaps you ought to consider relocating to somewhere more aligned to your tastes?

    And for someone who professes to prefer the bracing honesty of dictators and thugs to the politics of hypocritical neo-colonial liberal democracies, you sure quickly turn into a quivering blancmange of outraged emotional crisis when the bracing honesty comes the other way.

  14. Sanctuary 16

    Norightturn points out Bill English’s Achilles heel – an incompetent Nick Smith who instead of sacking, he goes on holiday with. If I were a Labour MP, I would spend my entire time imaging Nick Smith with a giant bullseye stick to his arse. A juicy, juicy target in election year!

    • Morrissey 16.1

      Bill English’s double-dipping (i.e., fraud) scandal means he is just as much the Achilles heel of Nick Smith and the National Party….

      • James 16.1.1

        Where is the fraud ?

        You say it like it’s a fact. But he’s within the rules, and it’s perfectly legal.

        Referring to it as fraud when it so obviously isn’t makes you look like a Tin foil hat wearer.

        • Morrissey

          Where is the fraud ?

          You’re joking, surely?

          You say it like it’s a fact.

          It is a fact, and English apologised for defrauding the taxpayer. Sadly, that little exercise of pride-swallowing was his only punishment.

          But he’s within the rules, and it’s perfectly legal.

          Then why did he pay back the money?

          • Wensleydale

            Generally speaking, politicians and big business love things that are deeply unethical, but technically legal. For them, it’s the latter that really matters. Usually, there’s only an apology and an attempt to makes amends when they realise the catastrophic public relations meltdown that will inevitably result once their indiscretions are publicised.

            They don’t genuinely feel guilt or shame about what they’re doing. It’s all about reelection and returns to shareholders.

          • james

            I’ll tell you what – you post a link where English “apologised for defrauding the taxpayer” – I’ll apologize

            You make the claim he apologizes for “defrauding” – now back it up?

    • DH 16.2

      English’s Achilles heel is the same as most of us – his arrogance. He’s become obsessed with this investment approach to social issues and it’s already driven him to fiscal foolishness with more to come.

      IMO when (if ) the general public get to hear what price he really sold the Tauranga State houses for he can start packing his bags. National can spin and swing asset sales to a long suffering public, what they can’t get away with is selling public assets for only a fraction of their worth.

      • Morrissey 16.2.1

        Unfortunately, in 2014 National showed it can get away with anything. This will continue to happen as long as we have the “opposition” party led by someone who called Nicky Hager’s revelations “a distraction.”

  15. Jenny 17

    In the news; Authorities in the occupied territories are on the search for a suspected Palestinian man who stormed into a Synagogue in Jerusalem and started whipping the worthshippers. Witnesses interviewed later, reported that the man was heard loudly shouting, accusing them of being money changers.

    Before storming off, the man was heard to mutter something about going to start his own religion.

    Other witnesses of the events said that it they could get hold of the man they felt like crucifying him.

    Oops. Sorry I picked up the wrong piece of paper, that was the story of Jesus driving the money changers from the temple. Mathew 21:12-13

    And in other news; Kim Dotcom says that he is planning a release of 2 terabytes of data, two days before the next election, iImplicating departing PM John Key and the Nationa….

    • garibaldi 17.1

      Jenny those two items are related. It was later reported that one of those being whipped was a certain John Key.

  16. Muttonbird 18

    The Jews are going off the deep end on the North Shore. They want their settlements!'s-electorate-office-vandalised

    • Morrissey 18.1

      Israel is an outlaw state, condemned by the civilized world. Israel is not “the Jews”.

      • Muttonbird 18.1.1

        I’m pretty sure Israelis didn’t write it.

        • mpledger

          I don’t think any Jewish people would write it, Israeli or non-Israeli, unless they were teenagers on the piss. It smells of people trying to ratchet up tensions/get sympathy for the National party.

          • Muttonbird

            Aren’t all Jews Israeli citizens?

            • Andre

              You might be thinking of the Law Of Return, under which Israel grants most Jews worldwide the right to move to Israel and then become citizens after a short period of residency.

          • Morrissey

            Sadly, not all Israelis are people of the moral fibre of Gideon Levy, Amira Hass, Jeff Halpin or Ilan Pappé. Israel is probably the most paranoid and heavily propagandized country in the world. It’s not “teenagers on the piss” who have destroyed the lives of Palestinians for the last 68 years, and are still destroying them. The culprits are middle-aged, sober desk murderers like these….


          • ropata

            It was probably some fundie calling himself/herself “Steadfast” a few days ago… can’t find the exact comment as search is borken 🙁

    • Anne 18.2

      Yeah… McCully et al should’ve seen that coming. The northern parts of the Shore is home to a few wacky religions, South Africans and extreme right wingers – and Colin Craig. Having said that, there are still normal people living there too. I know because I’ve met them – including Sth Africans. 😈

      Edit: OMG, I’m not accusing CC of being the culprit. Given his taste for litigation… 😯

      • tinfoilhat 18.2.1

        Having met and taught with many immigrant south african and zimbabwean teachers I have found them all to be outstanding additions to the country.

  17. Morrissey 19

    The thugs who vandalized that office are supporters of Israel. They quite possibly are extreme Christians, and not Jews.

    • JanM 19.1

      Yes, from what I know of them I think that’s quite likely

    • mpledger 19.2

      It smells of being a false flag op. There’s just no precedent for it.

    • Muttonbird 19.3

      Tell you what though. That resolution censuring Israel was the only half decent thing this government has done.

      And it was done immediately after Key had run off…


  18. Muttonbird 20

    This should be an election issue for the Labour/Green government in waiting. Our rivers are dying before our eyes at the hands of farmers and it’s something ordinary rural people know because it’s happening within even a child’s memory.

    Someone here suggested the other day that the election should be fought on housing an climate change. I agree with housing but climate change is too inaccessible an issue and is global. Non Green voters won’t be moved by climate change campaigning, but the state of our rivers is an environmental topic, and a disaster, and a really good way to get ordinary people to think about environmental issues.

    • BM 20.1

      I have said the same thing a few times, climate change is too macro, the greens, especially need to focus on more of this sort of stuff, this is where hay can be made.

      • BM 20.1.1

        But it’s got to be pitched in a helping positive way, not a punishing way.

        I realise that sort of thinking rubs the left wings fur the wrong way, but it’s the most effective approach to getting people on board and enthusiastic about what you’re saying.

        • Muttonbird

          And how do you propose that is done?

          This is what is happening right now…

          Anyone else breaking the law would have the book thrown at them but not farmers. Massive breaches of already weak environmental protections are occurring and the consequences are light to non-existent.

          I propose the actual enforcement of very heavy fines for breaches of local and national protections on discharge and irrigation along with further encouragement/regulation for farmers to both remove stock from nearby waterways and to plant near waterways. Perhaps local youth could be employed in the planting scheme to be jointly paid for by landowners and the taxpayer. If the farmers can’t comply – tough shit, sell up and get out.

          That’s a stick and carrot approach.

          • BM

            You need to get Fonterra and all the other milk companies on board.

            There’s too much animosity between the left wing and the farming sector, there has to be a go-between to get any sort of scheme to fly.

            • Muttonbird

              Get the profit makers to do something about the damage they do in making that profit?

              Now there’s a thought.

            • Sabine

              you make it sound as if no one in NZ other then the ‘left wing’ has an issue with water pollution.

              so at a minimum it would be good to define the ‘left wing’.

            • Sacha

              You’re glossing over the discomfort of genuine conservatives who tend to vote right and also treasure our environment.

        • Sacha

          Why should respect for our environment be sugar-coated, when disrespect never is? I do not care whether corporate dairying interests are ‘enthusiastic’. They’ve had their lazy time in the sun under this feckless government. Time to pull their socks up and behave like respectful citizens again.

        • reason

          We could play a fun game out of Nationals poisoning of our rivers…..

          Called “right direction”, it involves drinking Nationals river-water …. wearing a blindfold ……….. and finding the toilet with the help of team mates who call out instructions.

          It’s an educational game on the danger of cowboys in charge …….

          White disco pants optional ………….. 🙂

      • Sacha 20.1.2

        The Green party have consistently campaigned for many years on clean rivers rather than climate change. Many New Zealand voters can remember swimming in and drinking from our streams, rivers and lakes without the slightest hesitation.

  19. Outdoor 21

    When are we going to ban some One Nation politicians from entering NZ. For some reason they are offended by probably the best action by a National government.

    • Muttonbird 21.1

      +1. I would have thought being on the wrong side of One Nation is a good thing. It’s probably the only good thing the current government has done in eight years.

  20. Morrissey 22

    Is that waste of space “Sir” Geoffrey Palmer now working for the Myanmar government?

    This is the most farcical “report” since the beyond-farcical Palmer-Uribe “report”….

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  • 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