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Open mike 05/02/2016

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, February 5th, 2016 - 96 comments
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96 comments on “Open mike 05/02/2016 ”

  1. Tony Veitch 1

    I’m not much into conspiracy theories, but something struck me the other day as – well, worth investigating further, because I know little about the subject. Perhaps someone on the Standard can amplify the matter?

    This was that the USA joined the TPPA negotiations on or around 2008, at the time when Key had just become leader of the National Party/Prime Minister of New Zealand.

    Are we then just part of a giant neoliberalist conspiracy funded by the corporates of the United States, and aimed at total domination of the world by the wealthy elite?

    • tc 1.1

      Conspiracy is the wrong word, it’s actually the way the system works with politicians tools of the uber wealthy controllers.

      Key is the tool placed briefed and ready in a blue seat for when the brash model imploded. They had to act fast after blinglish eroding their base.

  2. Paul 2

    Radio New Zealand disseminating misinformation about the numbers at the TPPA protest.
    Look at the aerial photos, Mr Griffin.

    • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 2.1

      It is a little known fact that Richard Griffin, in addition to his other responsibilities at RNZ, is the sole person in charge of crowd estimates.

  3. Ad 3

    The office of Anne Tolley has been firebombed.

    It will be a real measure of Key how he handles this. Particularly in this confluence of Waitangi Day and TPPA protests.

    He could easily go gung-ho with the Police and security services.

    I pray he chooses the path of restraint and peace.

    • Puckish Rogue 3.1

      http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/76601668/government-minister-anne-tolleys-office-firebombed–reports

      So john Key just gained at least five points after refusing to go to Waitangi (a good decision if a bit late) this will either add more to National and/or take away votes from the left

      The left just make it far too easy for National

      • Ad 3.1.1

        The people I saw up close with the most restraint were the New Zealand Police. I watched for half an hour as they were screamed at within centremetres of their faces, with dozens of protests’ i-phones raised waiting for someone to make the all-important first punch. All for television.

        Not a word from them. Not a muscle twitched. Just ice-cool.

        And from there, the protest energy at the Sky City entrance dissipated to very little.

        Impressive work from the New Zealand Police there.

        • Anne 3.1.1.1

          Umm… I think the police learned a thing or two in 1981 too.

        • greywarshark 3.1.1.2

          The ones doing the screaming were possibly the Rent-a-Mob that Gnats like to refer to at protests, no doubt knowing personally that such a thing exists because they ordered one to take-away.

        • Pasupial 3.1.1.3

          Speaking of restraint:

          Dunedin anti-TPP protester Olive McRae said yesterday’s mass protests in Auckland had been “very positive”, and emphasised she did not want what happened to her to distract from the success of the overall protest.

          This was despite a badly swollen scalp, and bruising elsewhere on her body sustained during a day of protest, including an incident in which her hair was pulled by a police officer, during a motorway protest yesterday afternoon…

          Ms McRae emphasised she had been engaged in a peaceful protest, and she and fellow protesters had gone to great lengths to ensure no members of the public, including motorists, were injured or put at risk.

          She rejected suggestions the hair pulling was necessary to remove her from the highway for her own safety, and said police had used excessive force.

          http://www.odt.co.nz/news/national/372065/protester-bruised-still-upbeat

          • weka 3.1.1.3.1

            Thanks, I was wondering if we would hear her story. Good on her for being so reasonable.

          • Expat 3.1.1.3.2

            When I saw the pic, I couldn’t help thinking of the Key connection, you know, the pony tail thing, I bet it crossed the mind of Olive at the time.

      • Jeff 3.1.2

        He cant be in Waitangi and Bluff at the same time, He is going to Bluff to pull down all the nasty flags

      • Jeff 3.1.3

        He cant be at Waitangi . He has bigger fish to fry. Key is going down to Bluff to pull down all the nasty blue flags

      • joe90 3.1.4

        The left just make it far too easy for National

        Yeah, although your mob are way better at sinister.
        /

      • alwyn 3.1.5

        Second time this week. Some idiot tried the same thing to Gerry Brownlee’s office on Monday night. I wonder if they have caught the fool.
        http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/76446286/vandals-attack-mp-gerry-brownlees-christchurch-office.html

      • weka 3.1.6

        What makes you think it was a leftie?

        And what does it say about not only the current National government, but NZ itself, that there will be many of us whose first thought will be Dirty Politics?

      • McFlock 3.1.7

        Thing about the TPPA is that opposition also might come from the rabid right nationalists.

        And I thought the Tuhoe raids were because lefties were being trained how to throw molotovs properly /sarc

        • weka 3.1.7.1

          Why Tolley’s office? Why Brownlee’s? (although tbh, I’m surprised that someone in Chch hasn’t firebombed Brownlee’s office long ago).

          They don’t seem like the targets of the left TPP protest.

    • mac1 3.2

      How did John Key handle the bombing of Tolley’s office? In response to advice that MPs might want to close their offices meantime, Key said that the safety of people at work was paramount.

      He is of course correct.

      But also hypocritical as that was not an issue for him with his ongoing hair pulling of a young woman at work.

      The second example of Key’s hypocrisy in just one day- this one being not going to Waitangi after his criticism of Clark back in 2007and his promises to always attend.

      John Key- hypocrite.

  4. dv 4

    http://www.nbr.co.nz/article/tpp-support-high-deal-signed-auckland-ns-184337#comment-position

    Here is a comment from an exporter (grundle) re the chinese FTA agreement by a manufacturer.

    I will quote in full

    e all (or some of us do) know what a ‘crock’ the TFA with China has been.
    If the agreement with China was an FTA then explain why we have been paying an 8% tariff on all beef exported into China.
    I own a manufacturing company in Auckland and supply a global company which also has suppliers in China. During a ‘bench-marking’ exercise which all manufacturers/suppliers around the globe quoted Tax paid, FIS, prices into each country.
    Lordie, Lord, guess what. I had to add 28% to my FIS price into China. The Chinese would add….ZERO to their FIS Auckland price.
    Free Trade agreement I think not!! What sort of muppets do we have running NZ Inc???
    Clark, Prime Minister at the time, heralded this as the first Western country to achieve an FTA with China….What a load of BS!!
    In the last 12 months my company has lost 3 customers to China, two of which relate to Govt. supply contracts.
    Remember, every $1.0m that is spent on importing goods equates to 9.4 FTE, both direct and indirect.
    If that $1.0m spent importing goods was kept in the NZ economy the Govt would see a $288k return. That $1.0m actually costs us $1.288m. Lost jobs, less PAYE, less GST, etc..
    This simple economic fact seems to elude our esteemed politicians. Maybe our leaders aren’t as smart as the believe they are and besides ” it doesn’t matter, because the plebs don’t know any better themselves….”
    Is the TPP going to be another Chinese FTA??
    A question for John Key. Explain the reason/s for gifting government contracts to the Chinese, whilst our NZ manufacturers are complying with Aust/NZ standards and the Chinese do not comply. The adage; ” you get what you pay for” has been played out for example, in the railway electrification of Auckland. Within three years the Chinese supplied barriers and fencing are rusting out and falling over. Aust/NZ standards for galvanised structures…. what do you mean??
    Correctly gauged rolled hollow section steel…All under gauged ….Hey but its cheap and we can’t upset our Chinese masters can we!!!
    Stand up NZrs and demand that our government actually starts looking out for local providers of local employment. NOT sucking up to the Chinese at the cost to local businesses and employment.
    Read the BERLE REPORT and learn something!!
    Regards the TPP. Lets see some detail and solid evidence pointing to a real, not imagined, advantage for NZ Inc.

    • cogito 4.1

      “Stand up NZrs and demand that our government actually starts looking out for local providers of local employment. NOT sucking up to the Chinese at the cost to local businesses and employment”

      100% spot on.

    • greywarshark 4.2

      dv
      So some little manufacturer doesn’t get everything he wants. He does apparently sell in China. When reading this load of complaints, remember that even Fonterra which is our biggest exporter in the sector of dairy produce is only a small player in the world Compare how much more miniscule this little exporter is.

      That we managed to make arrangements with China through a trade agreement kept us in the picture, at the table able to talk and deal with this huge country. We are tiny, they are big and powerful. We can’t get just what we want in these circumstances. We just have to try for the best. And note that bigger countries than we are, get grumpy because they don’t get what they want. Sometimes they go to war about it which isn’t a good thing for them and their people really, and not for the world either.

      We just have to keep dealing and trying for a better price. And not give away all our worldly goods as may be the price for belonging to the TPPA with its airy-fairy promises. We get vague promises, they get the right to sue us for airy-fairy profits they dreamed up for the future, and that haven’t come to fruition and they can blame that on us somehow. TPPA has been dreamt up by someone who used to send letters to Santa at the North Pole asking for really good stuff and got it! Such people have always expected to get what they want. Now they want to send us their wish list.
      edited

      • Macro 4.2.1

        Are you serious???

        Day after day – I see logging trucks laden with unsawn logs travel past on their way to Tauranga. There must be a hundred or more a week. They by-pass one of the largest saw mills in the country – now closed its doors with the loss of hundreds of jobs. Those logs are destined for …. China.

        Part of the FTA is that we cannot export sawn lumber to China. Great deal!

        NZ in WW2 sent a battalion of foresters to England with the express purpose to log and saw their spruce for the manufacture of the Mosquito. The Brits did not have the know how nor the capability to do it themselves fast enough.
        Part of the heritage of this country was built on saw milling – now because of a FTA we are not allowed to do it!

        If we were to put our foot down and demand that we only export sawn lumber – the ISDS machine would spring into action immediately.

        • greywarshark 4.2.1.1

          Swings and roundabouts Macro. We have been not-value-adding to our products for yonks now. I believe that the timber industry is badly skewed, the wood may be straight but the business practices aren’t. Is it true that we have to pay overseas prices for our own timber now that it is privatised and been sold to Fletchers, which I believe was then bought by Graeme Hunt? And that we had to make special treaties with Fletchers to prevent export of all, leaving us with insufficient for our own national needs?

          We got milk to China and we know that nothing else matters except dairy. Which has been in milk rush fever for yonks. So we can’t saw our own lumber, that is par for the course in this crazy global market. We do what we do best, then export it so they can do what they do best to it, and then, and so on. It is strange that this is so much like the old type British unionism where each union would only do the work that was covered by their union agreement, another union then did their bit. Much amusement was had because perhaps an electrician could instal something but someone else had to test it. It was uneconomic and inefficient so that got scrapped.

          Yet the production of things being split up between nations with much unnecessary transport and handling and bug-carrying shipping, is the received wisdom of all modern business economics. Don’t argue with the wisdom of the business class Macro. They know how to rub the genie to create profit, their magic is stronger, than your practical arguments.
          edited

    • Save NZ 4.3

      +1 DV – these trade agreements are emperors new clothes agreements. Most Kiwis are not benefiting.

  5. cogito 6

    Great cartoon in today’s Herald.
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=11584687

    Someone should knock up a few variants, including one with Key’s arrogant mug on it.

    • greywarshark 6.1

      Talking about mugs. What about a line of mugs with political faces on them, perhaps caricatured, for fund raising by the Labour Party. as time moves towards next election? Labour pollies would have to form part of the set – have their faces on them. But better to be talked about for something, than ignored.

      Labour could organise a buffet diner to raise money, buying a mug would be a prerequisite along with the dinner cost and there would be a Greek style Zorba music dance, and instead of throwing plates on the floor, they would throw National mugs. That would get some interesting publicity and indicate the strength of determination to win and save the country, and the Labour Party at the same time.
      edited

      • greywarshark 6.1.1

        Just a health and safety warning on the mug throwing exercise. The mugs would fracture and there might be some flying splinters so the crowd should stand in a large circle well back from the central impact. Pollies create many dangers which can cut you up and this could be another occurrence – so beware.

    • mary-a 6.2

      @ Cogito (6) – You say “Someone should knock up a few variants, including one with Key’s arrogant mug on it.”

      That might come soon enough, only with the great dictator’s face staring out at us from our money, as well as the flag!

  6. The Chairman 7

    Wellington’s hospitality industry is in decline. Is cheap booze being sold in supermarkets really to blame? Or does it come down to a growing lack of disposable income?

    Alistair Boyce, managing director of the Backbencher pub near Parliament, wants to see legislation introduced that would set a minimum price per standard drink, across both off-licences and on-licensed premises.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/news/76578943/Cheap-booze-damaging-Wellingtons-hospitality-industry-says-pub-boss

    Is putting an end to cheap booze the solution? Or will that merely lead to those priming up at home remaining at home?

    Thoughts?

    • joe90 7.1

      A wee while ago a 500ml bottle of beer cost a little over $2nz across a Dusseldorf bar – same beer across the bar in Whanganui – $7 for a 330ml bottle. Fuck em’.

    • Olwyn 7.2

      I think it is reduced disposable income for the most part. People like to go out, and would go out more if they could stretch their income that far. In Australia, the alcohol prices favour the pub over the off-license but drinks at the pub are quite a bit cheaper than they are here, relative to income. However, the pubs in the major Aussie cities do have a much bigger customer base. What might make a difference is a culture change whereby having a drink is associated with conviviality and catching up with friends, rather than drinking up large. This might broaden the pub’s customer base and allow for a price-shift favouring the pub, since they would be able to sell a few drinks to many rather than try to sell many rather expensive drinks to a few. But as things stand, I suspect that raising off-license prices will just lower people’s standards rather than send them running down to the local.

      • The Chairman 7.2.1

        “I think it is reduced disposable income for the most part. People like to go out, and would go out more if they could stretch their income that far.”

        Indeed.

        “But as things stand, I suspect that raising off-license prices will just lower people’s standards rather than send them running down to the local.”

        Or result in them staying home more and drinking less often.

        I agree a culture change may help, but if the hospitality industry want to increase consumer demand, then they need to support and push issues that will put more money in peoples pockets while opposing those that will result in consumers having less.

        • Olwyn 7.2.1.1

          …if the hospitality industry want to increase consumer demand, then they need to support and push issues that will put more money in peoples pockets while opposing those that will result in consumers having less I agree, but also suspect that the squeeze runs all the way down. I have known a bar to get pokies, for instance, not because they wanted them, but because the rent from them meant keeping afloat. Meanwhile the franchises put the squeeze on franchisees, etc. It is not just publicans supporting low wages and still wanting to sell drinks, it is each layer taking their pound of flesh, with low-paid workers and high-priced drinks as the end result.

          • The Chairman 7.2.1.1.1

            “It is not just publicans supporting low wages and still wanting to sell drinks, it is each layer taking their pound of flesh, with low-paid workers and high-priced drinks as the end result”

            And it’s that kind of structuring that requires to be opposed Even those on the top (applying the squeeze) lose out when patrons stop coming and bars close.

        • alwyn 7.2.1.2

          I think, at least for those over about 25, there is the reduced alcohol limit when driving that worries them. They don’t want to go out for a meal and not have a couple of glasses of wine with the food.
          The ridiculous campaign the police are running which basically tries to tell you that you cannot safely drink anything is putting people off going out. It doesn’t apply to the younger ones who aren’t driving on their boozing nights anyway.

          The person complaining is a special case of course. He lets politicians into his establishment which lowers the tone enormously. Would you want to drink in a place that let Trevor Mallard or Peter Dunne through the door?

          • The Chairman 7.2.1.2.1

            Reducing the alcohol limit would have had an impact.

            “Would you want to drink in a place that let Trevor Mallard or Peter Dunne through the door?”

            lol. They do seem to pull a crowd when they are filming the show though.

    • DH 7.3

      “Is cheap booze being sold in supermarkets really to blame? Or does it come down to a growing lack of disposable income? ”

      Neither, they’ve just slowly priced themselves out of the market. It’s the classic instance of diminishing returns; the more they put their prices up the less interest people had in buying their booze. No sympathy here.

      Pub prices are outrageous, small wonder youngsters pre-load.

      • The Chairman 7.3.1

        I don’t believe so. There has always been a discrepancy. The price of alcohol in off license establishments has always been substantially lower.

        • DH 7.3.1.1

          “The price of alcohol in off license establishments has always been substantially lower.”

          Bollocks, you’re talking to an old public bar boozer here. A pint of tap beer used to be little more than bottle store prices, now they whack on outrageous markups of 400, 500, 600% and more.

          High alcohol prices were the domain of first after-hours nightclubs and then trendy bars where the nobs would go to avoid mixing with the working class. They were justified by bar owners either for the short opening hours or low patronage.

          When people pre-load it’s a pretty clear message they want to drink at their destination but can’t or won’t because the prices are too high for them.

          • pat 7.3.1.1.1

            Bollocks, you’re talking to an old public bar boozer here. A pint of tap beer used to be little more than bottle store prices, now they whack on outrageous markups of 400, 500, 600% and more.

            +1

          • The Chairman 7.3.1.1.2

            I was talking generally. As for public bars, they still charged more.

            Prices are considered high because incomes are low.

            • DH 7.3.1.1.2.1

              Sorry but you just have it wrong here. At many pubs you could go from bar to bottle store and buy a flagon of tap beer for much the same price you’d pay at the bar.

              Bottles cost more than tap beer largely due the cost of bottling but the difference wasn’t that great, was only the boutique beers with high prices.

              Prices are considered high because they are high. You can’t load on a huge 500% markup and expect to maintain your sales numbers. Too many bar owners are just plain greedy. You don’t see the popular bars dropping their prices, they’re more than happy to rake it in when the going’s good.

              • The Chairman

                Back in the day you could swap an empty flagon for a pre-filled one at minimal cost. However, it still cost more to drink in a bar and far more in a nightclub when they came about. Yet, they still use to pull the crowds in.

                People would queue down Courtenay Place to get into Serepisos’s place. And before that, Ray Johns had them queuing up the stairs at Spats.

                IMO, people just don’t have the disposable income to blow on partying as they used too.

                Prices have increased but have bar margins, thus return? Overheads such as rent/lease and power increases would have had an impact.

                Wages have also increased. But have they kept up?

                We also have an aging population.

                If bars were making a good return, (and going off closures, a number don’t) we wouldn’t hear gripes like this (link above) coming from within the industry.

                However, in saying that, it could be a ploy to reduce competition.

        • joe90 7.3.1.2

          I don’t believe so.

          Anecdata ahead – 35 years ago if I spent my entire nett wage in the boozer I could buy 112 jugs of beer. Same job today would buy me 62 jugs of beer.

          • The Chairman 7.3.1.2.1

            Wages failing to keep up.

          • alwyn 7.3.1.2.2

            The mind boggles.
            I think you’d probably collapse about 2 hours after the bar opened.
            On the other hand I do remember many years ago in my University days there were people who would go and have an 8 ounce beer in every pub in Wellington between 9am and 6pm. There were about 45 I think. Never tried it myself. I was foolish occasionally but never that foolish.

            • joe90 7.3.1.2.2.1

              The late great Whanganui bicycle crawl was jug a pub jobbie, handles for ladies, starting at The Castlecliff ,all the way across town to The Aramaho, back down the river to The Riverside, Fosters, Rutland, Imperial, Railway, Criterion, Masonic, Federal, Commercial and then over the river to The Red lion Inn.

              Face plants and heatstroke etc made for a big day thin on finishers.

              • alwyn

                God. That sounds even worse. A jug was about 35 ounces wasn’t it?
                I think I’ll just go and have a lie down.

                • Descendant Of Sssmith

                  lol.

                  Filling up a jug with a nip of everything in the top shelf and then drinking it was probably worse.

                  God knows what it would cost to do that now.

                  It probably tasted awful but for some reason the memories are quite hazy in regards to those sessions.

              • Descendant Of Sssmith

                Many hours spent at the Rutland.

                Fond memories of Hammond Gamble in particular, swimming in the indoor pool in the bar while the bands played, the guys in the pool team the occasional brawl over the table, the flat upstairs and the Aussie receptionist.

                Good times.

                I remember the bicycle run and yeah beer was much cheaper and there was a good wine-shop in the main street, opposite Dowsetts, which closed down like many not long after supermarkets were allowed to sell alcohol.

                • Crawled out a window at the Rutland to avoid the coppers when I was 16 or 17. I have a vague memory of seeing Hammond Gamble and Midge Marsden there, possibly after the bikes on Boxing Day. I also did a couple of crawls, but as most of my mates were Eastsiders, we’d start at the Aramoho, then do the run to the ‘cliff and back into town via the Red. We’d park up there and walk over the bridge to do the town pubs.

                  Sadly, most of the other pubs mentioned above are long gone. However, the Station lives on as a sports club over by Peat park. It’s a top joint. As luck would have it, I’ll be in the river city tomorrow. Might check out the ‘new’ Riverside bar, see if it’s any chop.

    • Expat 7.4

      Same thing applied at the Wellington 7’s, only 13k attendance, I wondered about the reasons and if it was economic, what a shame for a great comp if people simply can’t afford to go, and an indictment of the economic policies of this govt.

  7. Smilin 8

    Waitangi
    Key does not attend because he may give power to the unelected opposition reps to enhance their profile on nat tv
    Sorry John you dont get to play political bias as PM. You have an obligation and if your security needs to be cranked up for your so called safety that you feel you dont need, well PUT YOUR BALLS WHERE YOUR MOUTH IS AND PROVE IT

    Gandhi fronted all sorts of violence and threats to his political profile to the point of being assassinated but knowing it would come, did not give up his principles and actions to achieve independence and democracy for India
    On Keys stance he is not addressing the fact that Waitangi is a commemoration of the Treaty and protests are protests .If the protest are illegal and a danger to the govt to be there, Then use the law, you had no trouble at Tetoki bringing a hit squad .
    Key is playing the Yank public opinion game of the FDR era, he aint called Slippery for nothing .

    Key is trying to sidestep the fact that Maori do have a right to demand clarity over the TPPA and any other crown agreements will be affected by the statutes of the Treaty and why not address it at Waitangi .Key wont do that because of the law and he has already sold out the treaty and NZ in te TPPA and the only way out for NZ is to get rid of the TPPA by electing a govt that will do so .
    The TPPA is a mobile ponzi where America gets to take over the sovereignty of the Pacific countries and as we know the real gains to NZ are minimal but isnt interesting to note that the great highs in milk prices have decreased as this TPPA has gained traction and from that you could easily follow that to the drop in currency value and the fact that oil will bottom right out as recent finds in Europe have completely changed the game .And as for the 2008 Crash hoax well Johnny saviour we know we know you are dangerous BS

    Key got his TPPA mates in AK to sign the starter for one world govt without full disclosure to the people of NZ. 605 corporations in the states have had the full text since its drafting, why not the people of NZ ?
    So Johnny stop pullin our ponytail/chain and face it you have been caught by the Chaser Game Over lets hope 2017

  8. Smilin 9

    Have a listen to HOOTEN’S bs on radio this morning not quite awake I would say

  9. Pasupial 10

    This would be good scheme for a the Green or Labour Party to propose in this country. Might get some of the missing million back to the ballot boxes:

    Under a law passed unanimously by the French senate, as of Wednesday large shops will no longer bin good quality food approaching its best-before date. Charities will be able to give out millions more free meals each year to people struggling to afford to eat… Supermarkets will also be barred from deliberately spoiling food in order to stop it being eaten by people foraging in stores’ bins…

    Crucially the law will also make it simpler for the food industry to give some excess products directly to food banks from factories. Until now, if a dairy factory made yoghurts carrying the brand name of a supermarket, it had been a long, complex process to donate any excess to charity. Now it would be faster and easier…

    Of the 7.1m tonnes of food wasted in France annually, 67% is binned by consumers, 15% by restaurants and 11% by shops. Each year 1.3bn tonnes of food are wasted worldwide.

    http://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/feb/04/french-law-forbids-food-waste-by-supermarkets

    • The Chairman 10.1

      A policy to restore/increase benefits would get the attention and support of a number

      • Kay 10.1.1

        @Chairman of course it will but that’s too reasonable, sensible and logical. Besides, Labour hate us as much as the Nats, that’s been an established fact since 1999. They have no intention of increasing benefits. They won’t even talk about it.

        • The Chairman 10.1.1.1

          It’s a move a number have been waiting sometime for Labour to make.

          The more beneficiaries receive, the more they spend, the more they boost business and tax returns.

          • Descendant Of Sssmith 10.1.1.1.1

            Aye but the real money to be made is in servicing the rich.

            The more money the rich have, the more you can make providing them shit at high prices.

            Remember this was all forecast in the Citibank plutonomy advice they gave to investors:

            http://politicalgates.blogspot.co.nz/2011/12/citigroup-plutonomy-memos-two-bombshell.html:

            And here’s an interesting example. On the surface young lad made good and then you see stuff like this and see the dependency on the right connections and where the money comes from.

            “Crimson immediately found a market: Beaton’s old high school, King’s College. “We had a very quick client base from people who knew of my experience going through. Parents talk, and they all want the best for their kids.” He adds: “We’ve been cash-flow positive since day one.”

            “The Motivational Corner was one of four businesses Beaton bought last year. There was also UniTutor, a university tutoring service; MedView, a company that prepares students wanting admission to New Zealand’s medical schools; and Play Atlantic, which helps student athletes win scholarships to overseas universities (Max Key, the prime minister’s son, is a Play Atlantic consultant).”

            No question he’s bright and works hard but I wouldn’t think there’s anyone in my neighborhood paying for his services – or even able to.

            And before the righties get stuck in – nope I’m not jealous it just seems to me to quietly reinforce the whole plutonomy service the rich, have the right connections concept.

    • weka 10.2

      as an aside, this is why the rhetoric about GE/Monsanto feeding the world is bullshit. We have plenty of non-GE capacity to grow food for everyone, it’s just that some of us don’t want to share.

  10. Jim 11

    Did anyone else notice the large drones piggybacked on transport planes flying into Whenupai airbase on tuesday evening?
    Seemed quite ominous to me considering the TPP signing coming up.
    Maybe it’s a regular thing apparently we build them here but these things looked really big like the U.S ones.

    • McFlock 11.1

      anyone important at the signing?

      • Save NZ 11.1.1

        @McFlock – I doubt it – even those signing know this deal is a croc and don’t want the publicity to be associated with it!

        Anyone know?? My guess is, nobodies present. They send their 4th assistant to the trade minister in disguise.

  11. Magisterium 12

    Labour leader Andrew Little and Labour MPs are standing outside the Te Tii Marae gates in the rain after the Green Party went on ahead of them.

    The Opposition parties were to be welcomed on at the same time, but instead the Greens have been taken on for a separate powhiri. That has left Labour standing in the rain for an hour.

    Although they are not supposed to talk politics on the marae, they are apparently happy to show their colours – the Labour group is a blaze of Labour branded umbrellas and flags.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11584959

  12. logie97 13

    TPPA
    It may have been explained already, but why the rush to get it through parliament now.
    Most parties appear to have 2 years to ratify the agreement.
    Why not open it to clause by clause scrutiny in our parliament over the next 18 months.
    What’s the Key government’s rush?

  13. Karen 14

    Steven Joyce has had a dildo thrown at him at Waitangi. For a LOL moment look at the footage from TVNZ

    https://www.tvnz.co.nz/one-news/new-zealand/tpp-protester-boldly-chucks-dildo-at-steven-joyce-waitangi

  14. The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 15

    The people throwing sex toys are acting like adults? I guess.

    • Lanthanide 15.1

      I enjoy a good game of ‘toss the dildo’.

    • Tautoko Mangō Mata 15.2

      Are sex toys made for children?

      • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 15.2.1

        That’s what I meant. Adult in the Adult Shop sense.

    • Stuart Munro 15.3

      Kiwis are unaccustomed to having to remove worthless governments – unlike the Poms, who rioted in the streets over Maggie’s poll tax.

      We expect better governments than we get, and the governments in turn have lost their respect and loyalty to the people. There will be tears before bedtime one of these days, as either the people or a despotic regime assert power.

    • Magisterium 15.4

      “This is for raping our sovereignty”

      Because rape jokes are funny

      Or, you know, not

  15. Morrissey 16

    Mike “Contra” Hosking clearly intends his “aspirational” heroes to
    be a standing reproach to protestors and other “dicks”.

    Seven Sharp, Television One, Friday 5 February 2016

    That brilliantined, preening, self-aggrandizing [1] National Party placeman and SkyCity Casino shill Mike “Contra” Hosking likes to keep repeating that, like the National Party, he’s all about “aspiration”. On tonight’s program, he pushed this message with a vengeance, and his grinning, giggling underling Toni Street followed along obediently….

    Item no. 1: An interesting report about young people who learn to fly, and who build and launch rockets for a hobby. This of course provides the thoughtful and serious host with an opportunity for a pointed little homily….

    MIKE “CONTRA” HOSKING: What a contrast with some of the people we’ve seen on the streets yesterday, [speaking through closed lips, through the side of his mouth] who are not involved in launching rockets, shall we say?

    TONI STREET: [grinning nervously] Yeeeees.

    Item no. 2: World Bike Polo championships in Timaru. The organizer says the key message for all Bike Polo players is “Don’t be a dick.” After some quite interesting bike polo action, it’s back to the studio….

    MIKE “CONTRA” HOSKING: Words to live by. Words to live by—“Don’t be a dick.”
    TONI STREET: [still grinning nervously] Ha ha ha ha!

    Item no. 3: A Super Bowl commercial, featuring Dame Helen Mirren scolding drink-drivers, labeling them as “a short-sighted waste of space” and “a Darwin Award contender”, amongst other things. At the end of it, there is a brief moment of awe-struck silence, then there is this….

    MIKE “CONTRA” HOSKING: Wonderful, eh!

    Item no. 4: After noting that Joseph Parker is the number one contender for the world title, Hosking purrs, “Amazing, eh!”

    To hear Hosking utter such fervent endorsements will not have surprised long-time Hosking monitors, many of whom will have recalled his endorsement, a couple of years ago on his NewstalkZB radio program, of another right wing ranter. After playing several minutes of his hero loudly and offensively excoriating black men in the United States, Hosking ascended to full worship mode, panting with excitement: “Good, eh!”

    The right wing ranter that Hosking commended to his beleaguered listeners was Bill Cosby.

    [1] http://thestandard.org.nz/open-mike-15032015/#comment-985614

  16. Chooky 17

    ‘UN panel rules Julian Assange arbitrarily detained, entitled to liberty & compensation’

    https://www.rt.com/news/331371-assange-arbitrarily-detained-un/

    “UN panel has ruled that WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has been ‘arbitrarily detained’ in the Ecuadorian embassy in London, calling upon the UK and Sweden to end Assange’s deprivation of liberty.

    “The Working Group on Arbitrary Detention (WGAD) … considered that Mr. Julian Assange was arbitrarily detained by the Governments of Sweden and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland,” the statement said.

    The group concluded that the WikiLeaks founder “is entitled to his freedom of movement and to compensation.”

    …”On Thursday, an official from OHCHR (Office of the United Nations High Commissioner) Christophe Peschoux said if UN panel concludes that a person’s rights have been violated then “the decision is indirectly, but still legally binding on the relevant authorities and states.” ”

    “The opinions of the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention are legally-binding to the extent that they are based on international human rights law, such as the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR). The binding nature of its opinions derives from the collaboration by states in the procedure, the adversarial nature of is findings and also by the authority given to the WGAD by the UN Human Rights Council.”

    ‘Assange sex case: Five things you may not know about it’

    https://www.rt.com/news/331361-assange-case-five-facts/

  17. pat 18

    “Government departments produce draft documents for consideration all the time. This is a draft document which has not been seen by the Minister or his staff – nothing more,” a spokesperson for the Minister said in a statement.”

    sound familiar? CT strikes again

    http://www.bbc.com/news/world-australia-35499012

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