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Open mike 05/11/2014

Written By: - Date published: 6:43 am, November 5th, 2014 - 144 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Grant Robertson by WebbOpen mike is your post.

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Step up to the mike …

144 comments on “Open mike 05/11/2014 ”

  1. can anyone else hear the drums of war..?

    • b waghorn 1.1

      Was there every any doubt with key back in

      • BM 1.2.1

        Good sensible precautions.

        Sooner ISIS is crushed the better.

        • phillip ure

          you..bm..would also have supported invading iraq..and the overthrow of gaddaffi..that much we know..

          ..thus showing by yr previous words/stands..what an unthinking-fool/rightwing-tool you actually are..


        • Paul

          You should research ISIS’s origins.
          Your take on foreign affairs appears both uninformed and naive.


        • politikiwi

          Have you learned nothing from the failures of the last ten years?

          This is a bit like the war on drugs, or neo-liberal economics: “If we just keep locking up addicts / deregulating markets / dropping bombs, our theories will be proven right.”

          The West created the situation which gave rise to Isis. It’s a big problem, but following up with more of the policies which resulted in the creation of Isis in the first place isn’t going to fix it.

          For fuck sake, many of the people who now make Isis were children when the US started dropping bombs on Iraq ten years ago. Are we really all that surprised that watching their families get blown to bits has “radicalised” them?

          And why do we think that dropping even more bombs will now solve the problem that the bombs themselves created? It’s fucking lunacy.

          • BM

            ISIS wants to fight, that’s the problem. They want to turn the middle east into one big caliphate.

            Bit rough for all the people living in the middle east, they don’t get a choice, it’s either join us or we’ll cut your head off and stick it on a stake.

            How do you negotiate or discuss with that?

            • phillip ure

              this is a religious/sectarian/tribal war..on the other side of the planet..

              ..do we have to stop them there..before they get here..?

              ..(where have i heard that before..?..)

              ..and i’m presuming you know of our long history of this war-justifying hysterical-bullshit..?

              ..with perhaps the earliest extant-example being the gun-placements on north head..

              ..you do know they were hastily-built to stave off an impending invasion from russia..?


              ..sounds about as silly as the caliphate soon to be seen off our coasts..

              ..when you think about it..

              ..key is just a modern-day gun-placement peddler..

              ..and a cynical war-monger..

              • BM

                Not much of a humanitarian, there Phil.

                Other side of the world, not our problem who the fuck cares about those people.

                I find your attitude surprising.

                • felix

                  1. We must do something
                  2. (x) is something
                  3. Therefore we must do (x)

                  Very weak thinking there, Blood Money.

                • oh..!..i didn’t realise..!

                  ..it’s going to be a ‘humanitarian-war’..?

                  ..well that makes it ok..then..

                  ..and it will be the ‘humanitarian’-bullets fired by our ‘humanitarian’-soldiers/sas..

                  ..that will be doing the killing..?

                  ..in our name..?

                  …that makes it ok then..eh..?

                  (‘hello..!..i’m here to help you..!..we ‘care’…but first..wear this bullet..!’..)

                • Matthew Hooton

                  BM: morals do not and should not drive foreign policy – interests, in particular the search for security, do. Read The Tragedy of Great Power Politics by Mearsheimer. A decision to intervene needs to be based on more than caring about a situation – that is an argument to give money to World Vision or something similar. Rwanda was very sad, but would NZ be safer had Clinton intervened and Bolger decided to support him? In a very imperfect world, that is the true test. Note, the answer to an ISIS intervention, including NZ involvement, may be yes but beheadings on TV and other human rights atrocities do not make a case for intervention on their own.

                  • politikiwi

                    ^ this.

                    It’s a very hard problem, I agree. It’s also clear that continuing to beat the drums of war is actually what Isis want: Aggression from the West is their best recruiting tool.

                    I find it extremely disingenuous that the “need to protect the people of the Middle East from Isis” is used to justify invasions, and yet the killings of innocent civilians by the US, it’s allies and private defence contractors is considered “collateral damage.” Being dead is being dead, whether you’re hit with a drone strike or have your head severed.

                    The true genius of 9/11 was to bring the United States onto the ground in the Middle East. al Qaeda could not fight the United States on US turf, so they needed a way to bring them into the Middle East. 9/11 achieved that in ways bin Laden et al could not have dreamed of, and it’s given the radicals a perfect recruitment tool, which they’ve now turned into Isis.

                    Why do we think that continuing the failed foreign policy in the Middle East is the way to fix the results of the failed foreign policy in the Middle East?

                  • Colonial Rawshark

                    Rwanda was very sad, but would NZ be safer had Clinton intervened and Bolger decided to support him?

                    NZ would be safer if it didn’t support the creation of failed and failing states – a hallmark of western imperial and corporate interventions.

                    • The Al1en

                      How many of the 500,000–1,000,000 murdered Rwandans would still be alive today if they weren’t abandoned to their fate by the world is the bit I focus on, just like how many women and children won’t be sold in to slavery, raped and tortured as already declared booty of war if they aren’t protected now in their time of need.

                  • Tom Jackson

                    That’s nonsense, Hooton. Mearsheimer is just pushing his own realist cart on that one. There’s plenty of room for disagreement.

                    • tc

                      Whilst matthew pushes his cart labelled ‘diffuse and distract ‘ with a comparison to Rawanda and some opinionted tome from the bloke who would be essential reading for the right.

                      Especially Mearsheimer’s 2011 ‘Why Leaders Lie’ that carries the lesson “Lie selectively, lie well, and ultimately be good at what you do.”

                    • swordfish

                      National has always tended towards the so-called Realist school of Foreign Policy , whereas Labour, since its creation in 1916, has – given those original Socialist principles – aligned itself more with the Liberal Internationalist school.

                      Before 1935, New Zealand’s foreign policy had been entirely of a Realist bent, the First Labour Government then introduced elements of Liberal Internationalism – enthusiastic support for international organisations, international law, democracy, self-determination and human rights – albeit while still continuing with a number of Realist policies as well.

                      So, I think it’s fair to say that although this mix of (I) Moral Internationalist Idealism, emphasising the similarities between countries and people and (ii) a Self-Interested Realism, stressing natural antagonisms (albeit with a strong practical element of Whatever-the-US-and-Britain-say-goes) has set the pattern for New Zealand foreign policy ever since 1935, Labour has always tended toward the former, the Nats toward the latter.

                      It’s really interesting to see what the Nats do when the US tries to mobilise by stressing some sort of moral element to their planned foreign intervention. Do they go for pure Realism or practical Realism ?

                    • Colonial Rawshark

                      US always justifies their bombing with a moral superiority element as it is a key component of successful propaganda to shift public opinion.

                      Bombing Afghanistan villages for womens rights
                      Bombing Iraqi towns to stop Islamic barbarity.
                      Torture and secret prisons to protect freedom etc.

                    • swordfish

                      Yep, CV, particularly so since Clinton. Some have called it “the weaponization of human rights”. The US attacking/intervening/occupying in its own interests, dressed-up as some sort of noble, liberal humanitarianism. This extraordinary idea of the US as a benign giant, pursuing its rightful role on the World Stage by vanquishing evil (no mention of America’s active role in various post-war genocides).

            • DoublePlus Good

              If Iraqis and Syrians aren’t being bombed or elsewise messed with by the west, all of the actions that perpetuate hatred are gone. Their support would slowly dissipate.

        • Clemgeopin

          Shouldn’t such an action be sanctioned by the UN first, before other nations such as NZ, unconnected with the region, be involved?

        • DoublePlus Good

          You know that military action created the environment for ISIS to form in the first place, right? And that further military action will just make things worse?

      • phillip ure 1.2.2

        i just remember how enthusiastic so many were to ‘get’ saddam hussein..

        ..and then the aftermath..?..oh shit..!

        i just remember how enthusiastic so many were to ‘get’ gaddaffi..

        ..and then the aftermath..?…oh shit…!

        ..do we ever learn from these outbursts of war-lust/fever..?..and then the hangovers..?

        ..shit no..!

        “..The West is silent – as Libya falls into the abyss..

        ..In 2011 there was jubilation at Gaddafi’s demise.

        Not any more:

        – the aftermath of foreign intervention is calamitous and bloody..”



        and back at the time of that ‘get-gaddaffi’ mood/fever..i was really surprised at how so many on the left here in nz were so ‘relaxed’ about the cia/america deposing who was the most secular of all the arab-leaders..

        ..how many of them so eagerly/happily gulped down that cia-kool-ade..

        ..especially surprising from people who should have known better..eh..?

        ..(not their finest hours..

        ..and they know who they are..)

        • wyndham

          Not to mention that we haven’t paid, in cash that is – – – not lives, for WW1 yet !

        • Skinny

          American propaganda, as you point out every ‘so called evil dictator’ taken out by the yanks leaves the Country in a mess. It’s all about the money generating war machine. All the weaponry produced needs manufactured wars to keep the juggling pins in the air. Innocent civilian’s are a casualty of American wars.

          • phillip ure

            and once again..we are signing up to be eager spear-carriers..

            (for economic reasons..?..or because our prime minister is americas’ ‘man-from-the-fed’..?..their ‘man’..?..)

            ..and key is so jonesing for war..

            ..he is like a smack-addict on day three of withdrawals..

            • phillip ure

              and you can expect the corporate-media to just fucken nod along…

              ..as they always do..

              (..’oohh!..local-terror-threat..?..is that what he said..?’..)

              ..key plays them like a fucken tin-whistle..

              • Here are my two cents on it. Written by a group of Israeli political insiders in 1982. It seems they are following the exact same script. But conspiring? Neh, Never!

                • higherstandard

                  Even by your standards that’s some nuclear strength tinfoil hat stuff.

                  • From Bomber I might add. 😆

                  • Murray Rawshark

                    On the contrary, it’s the most sensible thing she has ever posted. Eretz Israel used to be everything west of the Jordan and north of Suez. What Begin used to call Judea and Samaria. By Bibi’s liebensraum loving standards, Begin was a peace loving moderate. Now they openly say they want everything from the Nile to the Euphrates. What’s worse, they go further than that. They say their invisible sky friend has given it to them and it’s their destiny. Chosen people is now equivalent to master race, which is a filthy contradiction of the original teachings.

                    But yea, lower standard, I don’t expect you to see past slogans about freedom and that curled up snake thing that looks like a piece of dogshit.

                  • Oh, wrong answer to the wrong link. Thought you where responding to the 101 questions from Bomber about 9/11 which I posted elsewhere but it goes to show that you really don’t ever read any of my links>

                    If you had you would have known that it was a paper written by an Israeli think thank tasked with lining out how Israel could continue to exist rather than me just coming up with some harebrained theory.

                    These are their recommendations and every thing you see happening in the Middle East is following these recommendations.

                    Whether John Key knows this or not is neither here nor there as I said in my post. In his capacity as prime Minister and the one who will lead us to war if he chooses it is his responsibility to ask serious questions about why and for who Kiwi soldiers are asked to die.

                    When crimes are committed investigators try to find Qui Bono (Who benefits) as an indicator of who might have committed the crime. I think it’s time we do the same.

                    By the way, Millions of Jews around the world are brave enough to do just that. Many of them feel their identity as religious people of peace has been stolen by the Zionist gang on the loose in Israel

    • AsleepWhileWalking 1.3

      The drums beat with every strategically placed IS story. I’ve made a commitment not to read them.

    • joe90 1.4

      can anyone else hear the drums of war..?

      With so many to options….

      Central African Republic

      Democratic Republic of Congo








      South Sudan



      …sigh…what’s a warmonger PM to do.

    • greywarshark 1.5

      @ phillip ure
      A good chance to hear from Les Mis

    • lurgee 1.6

      Sometimes it is the wrong thing to act, sometimes it is the wrong thing to do nothing.

      In the case of Iraq in 2003 (which I opposed) it was the wrong thing to act. In the case of Syria, and now ISIS, I think it was the wrong thing to leave the opposition and war to be colonised by terrorist fanatics.

      It is too easy to say intervention = wrong and John Key / USA = wrong. Sometimes there are evils that need to be confronted and this looks like being one of them.

      That said, there’s no need for NZ to be involved in this mess and the new anti-terror laws are a groteque obscenity masquerading as public interest.

      • phillip ure 1.6.1

        how about ‘confronting the evil’ of america blowing innocent men/women/children apart with their drones..?

        ..yr definition of ‘evil that must be confronted’ seems somewhat selective..

        • lurgee

          Grow up. Unfortunately, fighting and war means innocent people will get hurt. It’s miserable, nasty reality. Is the USA DELIBERATELY seeking to kill innocent people?

          There are plenty of examples of the USA being genuinely evil. Why did you choose such a stupid one?

  2. does everyone know that there are hipster-equations..?

    ..that adding together the number of times a ukelele is played..

    ..plus the number of socks owned..

    ..tells us something important..?


  3. North 3


    A committee of “Free Thinkers” ? No.

    More an expanded access for the Prime Minister to the ‘top-drawers’ of a deemed elite resulting in a qualitative/quantitative expansion of Dirty Politics.

    The incidence and level of ‘threat’ to New Zealand, viz. the incidence and level of threat to the elites who are defined and lead by the Prime Minister, will be whatever the Prime Minister and his elites pronounce them to be. Non-elite views marginalised. And where necessary, signs of vehemence in the the non-elite view painted-up as marking the ‘threat’ within. Assisted by a neuter MSM. We live in dangerous times tending to fascism.

    Still……fabulous moves whereby the term “free-thinker” is colonised by the modern day robber barons. Someone is due a fat bonus for this Goebels masterpiece.

    • we can also look forward to a clampdown on the media..(for security/terror-reasons..)

      ..(as has happened/that little tory-rat in australia has just done..)

      ..the right further clamps down/plans war..

      ..the left stand by ineffectually waving their hands..

      (‘we’ve got a leadership race on..!’..)

      ..(and in the case of shearer/goff..becoming pimps for the war-mongers..)

      ..it’s all kinda both inevitable and fucken depressing..

    • miravox 3.2

      “The 10 include Fisher & Paykel Appliances chairman Keith Turner”

      Yeah well, Fisher and Paykel would know – giving that it it upped sticks from NZ 2008 to set up operations in Reynosa, Mexico with the drug cartels, murders and mass graves and all that.

      I wonder why the coalition of the willing aren’t all over the place…

    • Molly 3.3

      Since we are all now familiar with “John Key’s office”, I suppose it is well past time to meet “John Key’s Ethics”.

      Brings to mind a very bizarre picture similar to clowns in a mini, along the lines of –
      “How many people can fit into John Key?”

    • RedBaronCV 3.4

      I’m sure they will be given an agenda with conclusions dictated by John Key. War wash also known as blue wash.

      How could anybody intelligent even put their name down for this crap? I predict some resignations in the near future.

    • Murray Rawshark 3.5

      The single biggest threat to Aotearoa is the TPPA. I wonder what they’ll do about that.

    • Raa 4.1

      “The main responsibility for the low ebb of Democratic fortunes belongs to Obama. The only way to defeat Republicans is by fighting them on the basis of a strong populist economic program designed to help struggling working families at the expense of Wall Street interests. But the position of the Obama administration in the second term has been the foolish assertion that the depression is over, the recovery is in full swing, and that therefore a job program or credit stimulus program is no longer necessary. Instead, Obama has given great attention to the Republican War on Women, and to Republican hostility towards immigrants and immigration. Because of this misplaced emphasis, Obama’s occasional attempts to gain traction on the minimum wage and the related issue of income inequality have not been successful. Notwithstanding this, the Democratic campaigners who have done best in the current environment are those who have built their own efforts around anti-Wall Street economic populism.”

      Tarpley, November 3, 2014, see link above.

    • halfcrown 4.2


      • Raa 4.2.1

        Thanks for telling us something about your interesting world view.

        As described in


        “1984 is possibly the definitive dystopian novel, set in a world beyond our imagining. A world where totalitarianism really is total, all power split into three roughly equal groups–Eastasia, Eurasia, and Oceania. 1984 is set in Oceania, which includes the United Kingdom, where the story is set, known as Airstrip One.

        Winston Smith is a middle-aged, unhealthy character, based loosely on Orwell’s own frail body, an underling of the ruling oligarchy, The Party. The Party has taken early 20th century totalitarianism to new depths, with each person subjected to 24 hour surveillance, where people’s very thoughts are controlled to ensure purity of the oligarchical system in place. Figurehead of the system is the omnipresent and omnipotent Big Brother.”

        It sounds uncannily like the NZ National Party. Are you a member ? Are you Winston Smith ?

    • Karen 5.1

      Giovanni Tiso asked Labour leader candidates about their stance on TPPA yesterday. Only Andrew Little has replied so far.

      Andrew Little @AndrewLittleMP
      @gtiso Signed petition 2 years ago opposing investor/state dispute resolution clause as it is understood. Still opposed. Need to see text

      • Skinny 5.1.1

        Little would be naturally opposed to the TTPA being the former GS of the EPMU. The Americans will be using John Key’s eagerness to sign and lock New Zealand in to it as a glowing endorsement. I don’t believe our third biggest trading partner Japan will be overly impressed. They won’t be signing in a hurry, and by printing more money the Jap’s are gearing up to do the opposite. Good bloody job!

        • s y d

          this question was raised at the hustings meeting last night.
          Interesting answers, all well thought out with convincing discussions of what it may involve…..but for my money Nanaia Mahuta had the best answer – a straight out NO to the TPPA, as trying to explain the finer points is a losing battle.

          Take a position and state it.

          As slater is so fond of saying, explaining is losing…..

          • Karen

            So what did Robertson and Parker say?

            • s y d

              Whew, let me think.

              Robertson was pretty much along the same lines as Little, that needed to look at particular issues such as IP, sovereignty of states vs corporates property rights etc etc but I felt, largely uncommitted to TPPA.

              Parker was more pro the agreement – saw the drawbacks, but also saw some positives. Interestingly noted that there may be big problems for some workers/industries in NZ if it went ahead and NZ wasn’t a signatory.

              All 4 were OK with FTA’s (e.g. Labour gov’t agreement with China) where they benefitted NZ….(not going in to arguments about who gets the benefit!)

              But I still stand by my comment above – with issues like the TPPA I think the message needs to be simple and clear.

  4. Ad 6

    I’ve just finished reading the autobiography of Salman Rushdie -all 700 plus pages. It documents in detail the moral morass of confronting an Islamic state intent on crushing freedom of expression and other liberal-democratic virtues we take for granted, and its huge personal cost, just supporting one good author.

    The question I can’t get away from is: is any further NZ intervention in Iraq be a necessary stand against intolerance, and so entail all the risks of making a stand? Or should we stand back because its “not our war”? The rise of militant Islam is accelerating, and I don’t think there is any part of the world that is isolated from engaging about it, anywhere.

    • will you be playing the indonesia-card soon..?

    • JanM 6.2

      Interfering in other people’s worlds because we don’t like their ideas mostly makes the whole situation a great deal worse. In any case we in the west, led by the US, usually pick our fights based on some economic advantage to ourselves, not on any ethical grounds. To think otherwise is somewhat naive

    • minrach 6.3

      ” I don’t think there is any part of the world that is isolated from engaging about it, anywhere”

      Dues Vult !!

      you can go free the holy land from the Moors first eh…

    • joe90 6.4

      The rise of militant Islam theocracy is accelerating, and I don’t think there is any part of the world that is isolated from engaging about it, anywhere.




    • Murray Rawshark 6.5

      Salman Rushdie stirred things up to make money. He’s a total douchebag who doesn’t give a damn about intolerance. He profits from it.

  5. Dont worry. Be happy 7

    John Key plunging NZ into yet another war made in America. A “meat” for meat deal. A blood for milk agreement. And who has the clot got looking out for us in times of pandemic (animal and/or human) none other than the head honchos of the spook industry, the cow shit in rivers crowd and some dude whose company makes dud home appliances. Yep the little financial trader sure knows how to run a country….into the ground. We deserve better. This planet deserves better. And our grandchildren deserve better.

  6. Clemgeopin 8

    i asked this question yesterday as I am keen to hear your views on this subject. But none responded.

    Why doesn’t the Kiwi bank cut its charges, expenses and profit margins and give these excessive profit making foreign owned banks the run for their money? Wasn’t that the goal of the Kiwi bank when it was initiated by Jim Anderton?

    And another point: I think that all the government’s business as well as all the NZ companies should operate through the Kiwi bank as far as possible to support our local bank. What do you think?

    • JanM 8.1

      Kiwibank seems to be in the grip of 20th century Public Service mentality – at least that’s my impression when I deal with it.

      • Clemgeopin 8.1.1

        Thanks for your response, though it does not really answer my questions. I wish some people in the know could respond. I wonder if Jim Anderton reads TS and would respond!

    • Rosie 8.2

      Don’t know the answers Clemgeopin but have exactly the same questions myself – both points puzzle me but the first especially as a KB customer, whose been with them since they first opened.

      In regard to what they offer they are no different to other banks and in recent years have been cutting back their services as their profits increase.

      I am only with them for two reasons:
      1) We own it
      2) I can’t get a cheaper home loan anywhere else – on this they need to to do way more though, back to your first point

    • framu 8.3

      re: I think that all the government’s business

      i asked the same a while back and someone stated that kiwi bank dont have the capacity or capital (or something) to manage the govt accounts

      how true that is – i dont know, but that was the explanation given

      • Rosie 8.3.1

        Yes, I heard that too framu – but wasn’t that some time ago, as in approximately 4 – 5 years ago? If that is the case I wonder if Kiwibank are now big enough to handle to govt accounts?

        • Nic the NZer

          Commercial banks are not capital constrained, whoever said that didnt know what they are talking about. They can always borrow the reserves they need off the RBNZ at the OCR if they need more. It might have been their technical capacity at the time but that would not be an issue now. Not that this account will make much difference to their performance. The govt account is segregated from the rest of the bank by the RBNZ. They probably get something out of the account in transaction fees or a management fee or something.

      • RedBaronCV 8.3.2

        Sounds like rubbish to me. the govt banking is transactional – not like they have term deposits and mortgages down there.

  7. So they won’t be able to get insurance but the ‘tipping-point’ line caught my attention.

    “New Zealand’s population is located in coastal areas and beside rivers,” the report says. “As more people live in our largest cities, more lives and assets concentrate in disaster-prone areas. By 2050 about one million older New Zealanders will be living in areas vulnerable to severe flooding, coastal storm surges, land slips and wind storms. Often, developed cities suffer from under-investment and poor maintenance of infrastructure while the interdependence of digital infrastructure increases vulnerability.

    These conditions can put cities close to a tipping-point of disaster from hazard events…”

    …Kelvin Berryman, director of the Government-funded Natural Hazards Research Platform, which is dedicated to increasing our resilience against natural hazards, backed the paper’s conclusions, saying he would only buy a coastal bach “rather carefully” and warned people to consider tsunamis, coastal erosion and rising sea levels.


    Not prepared yet we know these severe weather events are coming – it also is sobering for those living in our cities – would you really want to be there when the tipping point tips? The many discussions here on this site have highlighted the fact that you have to get ready before it happens – get ready, think about what you are doing, where you are doing it and make changes while you can, while you have choices – when the shitstorms occur it will be too late…

    • Bill 9.1

      The rich get out (New Orleans, etc), the poor perish. Actually, given the global context, I’m not so sure where the rich think they will ‘get out’ to.

      Regardless, Governments and most AGW report authors are still talking 2 degrees C in spite of the scientific data pointing to 4 degrees C on current trends. (IPCC report stating 2 degrees on a ~60/40 punt and assuming efficacy associated with Carbon Capture and Storage)

      And governments prepare (barely, if at all) for 2 degrees while 4 degrees is on the cards by 2040 -50ish, and nothing they are doing will withstand the effects of 4 degrees, and that is while ignoring the potential for sub 4 degrees tipping points for the sake of optimism and sanity.

      • greywarshark 9.1.1

        @ Bill
        What you have said seems to be the case. The theme seems to be that countries can’t afford it, and it doesn’t seem propitious at the present time (for us pollies and our mates.)

        Such as in places like Oz and NZ who will bu…er around diminishing the government packages before they are screened through a measuring card like NZ Post use to make sure they aren’t too wide for The Sorting Machine to handle. Government shrinks package width regularly. Shrinks from the health service are needed now!

      • phillip ure 9.1.2

        @ bill..

        “..I’m not so sure where the rich think they will ‘get out’ to..”


        ..isn’t that obvious..?

  8. TheContrarian 10

    So someone attempted that catcall video in Auckland with completely different results:


    • felix 10.1

      All good then.

    • CnrJoe 10.2

      A Bradley Ambrose production.
      scroll, down the comments start riffing on
      “To be fair, the NYC actress was a lot curvier than this woman”
      “What she was wearing wasn’t even cute and she had a boy figure. Of course she wasn’t gonna get hit on lol ”
      “Woman walks down the busiest street in downtown Auckland and receives no cat calls. Should be a victory for New Zealand society, but instead lets objectify the woman in the video and say that she’s not attractive enough”.
      “Just to clarify – I’d hit it”……

      • Murray Rawshark 10.2.1

        Those videos give the commenters an opportunity for racism and sexism at the same time. They must think all their birthdays have come at once.

        I do wonder if it’s the Italian influence in NY. I’ve seen more yelling at women in Italy, Brazil, and Chile than I ever have in Aotearoa, Australia, or northern European countries. Maybe we have to be drunk first?

  9. millsy 11

    As the Republicans look set to gain control of Congress (something the Democrats only have themselves to blame for), New Plymouth’s council, controlled by its own version of Tea Party fanatics, elected last year on the back of this strange idea that charging people to attend the local art gallery would pull our city/district back from the edge of financial ruin, look set to impose harsh austerity measures on New Plymouth, cutting services that benefit the poor and working classes.

    The New Plymouth District council have voted to approve a draft proposal to cap rates for 10 year, in spite of officials warning that it would lead to the cutting of library hours, closure of pools, and the local petting zoo.

    Any changes will have to make their way through the usual consultation process but, it doesnt look good as it stands. This time next year, we are going to have slash and burn frenzy.

  10. Karen 12

    ‏@dazzabrazza asked the Labour leadership candidates this a couple of days ago

    @DavidParkerMP @NanaiaMahuta @grantrobertson1 @AndrewLittleMP
    Will your focus be on state housing or $400,000+ middleclass housing?

    Andrew answered state housing, David sent a youtube clip of himself talking about building affordable houses for people to buy.

    The other 2 haven’t replied yet.

    • greywarshark 12.1

      @ Karen –
      So Andrew Little likes state housing. Providing that, would give the economy a boost with jobs and training doing something useful and tangible, would limit the churning of children in and out of schools as parents look for something affordable and secure, would limit the spread of infections, flu – should be served by mobile health board vans looking after the children’s health where there isn’t a GP near. And house prices would start to come down, as the supply side would increase and desperate demand decrease.

      What a boon from just one initiative. Have the others the ability to count up boons, I think we should have a measure of health, wealth and happiness called a boon. (Then being born in the boondocks on ‘that’ side of town would be a good thing.)

      • Karen 12.1.1

        +100 Greywarshark.
        You have summed up the benefits of increasing the number of state houses very well. So why wasn’t that a major election policy for Labour?

        • greywarshark

          @ Karen
          I got confused about what was going on in election policies in the end. I got a bad cold and lost energy and heart for participation in the pre-election process. So can’t give facts about housing and Labour – but they had a grand scheme which got poo-pooed by Nat, dirty lot, and I think they were going to build a large number of houses in quick time which sounded more asperashunal than possible. And I think that unfortunately stepped on the trash button and went in the bin. People just thought it was an impossible dream. But they did offer policy and it would be on google.

          Sigh, they wouldn’t have been perfect, but small parts of Labour would have been excellent, and the rest would have performed fairly creditably. with improvements for all of us.

          Someone has done a study of utopianism and I seem to remember that newish countries like USA and NZ, are shown to suffer from it. And apparently it is something that you suffer! I feel I have experienced it. Try starting up something and getting it going in a practical way if all the bright eyes push their utopian ideas that will fly for no more than a few months!

          • Karen

            Well, they had the Kiwibuild policy, which was a good idea as a way of increasing the number of affordable homes, and they did have a policy to ensure all rentals met certain healthy home standards. Not so much about building state houses for all the people who have no show of owning a house in the foreseeable future.

            I don’t expect utopia, just a fairer society that doesn’t have families living in cars or kids having to change schools every few months because their parents can’t pay market rents.

            • McFlock

              yeah, but ISTR the greens had a good state house policyu that dovetailed with labour quite nicely.

              Well, with any luck labgrn can get themselves together within three years. And I know people who in 2008 voted national “because it’s their turn”, so some of them might be flipping next time, too.

              But then the Treasury will be predicting that NZ will finally reach surplus in 2017/18, with 170,000 new jobs… /sarc

            • greywarshark

              @ Karen
              By the way when I said ‘you suffer’ from utopianism I was talking generally not at you. I would have thought it was rather a grand desire but the view is that utopianism tends to drive people to go beyond the practical.

          • b waghorn

            The head of the builders association said it was quiet possible to build those number of houses with a couple of years to get there

  11. Chooky 13

    On naughty London bankers who need a whipping ….corruption…the emerging post-dollar order… and the new Asian Infrastructure and Investment Bank

    For economics made fun for dummies …see the Keiser Report


  12. Why is it that horse racing is considered okay – apart from the horses ‘like’ it and they live longer than in the wild.

    • joe90 14.1

      Indeed marty – dollars to donuts if the role of abattoirs in the industry were exposed and broken down horses euthanised without screens racing would wither and die.


      • marty mars 14.1.1

        joe your links often make me cringe and cry – that one did. Thanks mate.

        • joe90

          I won’t link to the travesty that’s greyhound racing – a gambling game masquerading as sport, where 35% of animals whelped don’t make it to the track, around half of euthanised dogs are under three years old with the majority disposed of in ‘on stud’ offal pits.

    • Rosie 14.2

      Don’t know why we are still racing horses in the 21st century marty mars. It is an incredibly cruel practice (as is the greyhound racing Joe90 talks about) but you know, money.

      I spent years around horses in my teens and used to ride almost every day. When you get to know the nature of horses you find they are highly sensitive and emotional herd animals and are capable of very strong bonds with humans if they can trust them. It surprising they do given the centuries of abuse we have given them, and still do.

      I recall one racing trainer said on telly that even the training is cruel. As a prey animal they are terrified into running as fast as they can, with the rider whipping them hard – to them it is like having a lion on their back and they are doing their best to get away.

      We used to get burnt out race horses grazing in the paddocks we rented, the ones that weren’t shot. They were wrecks. Some were vicious as a result of the way they had been mistreated, some were unable to be ridden because they freaked out at everything as their nerves were so jangled and some just seemed broken spirited.

      Watching the Melbourne cup news on 3 news was really depressing last night. News was that one horse collapsed in it’s stall after the race and died. The money that we squeeze out of these poor animals is sick.

      Don’t start me on rodeo’s.

      • marty mars 14.2.1

        “We used to get burnt out race horses grazing in the paddocks we rented, the ones that weren’t shot. They were wrecks. Some were vicious as a result of the way they had been mistreated, some were unable to be ridden because they freaked out at everything as their nerves were so jangled and some just seemed broken spirited.”

        So sad Rosie – and these are animals we humans profess to love and care about. I hadn’t thought about a prey animal being forced to run as fast as they can before – thanks for that insight.

        and yep money – it is all down to that money – that curse has been with us for a long time and it has just about destroyed us and our world.

        • Rosie

          Sigh. Sometimes, far too often in fact, we just don’t get it right as humans, on many different levels, social, environmental and with our treatment of other species, as well as our own.

          Sometimes “I’m sorry for being a human”. Feel a bit that way today.

      • Mark 14.2.2

        “I recall one racing trainer said on telly that even the training is cruel. As a prey animal they are terrified into running as fast as they can, with the rider whipping them hard – to them it is like having a lion on their back and they are doing their best to get away.”

        What an absolute load of crap. How do you explain the jockeys that don’t carry a whip. Just a whole lot of generalisations that are so far from what happens I don’t know where to start.
        Not sure if we should be racing horses in 2014 but the emotive and misleading crap written above harms the case instead of helping it.

      • greywarshark 14.2.3

        There was a piece on Oz and NZ racehorse treatment this morning I think Kathryn did it. They had 129 deaths in a year, we had four, of race horses. The one that died was from a burst aorta – that thing about a horse running hard till its heart breaks.
        NZ is saying they have good controls. But we don’t have as many races.

  13. Penny Bright 15

    Ok folks – you have until 5pm TODAY to give feedback on proposed changes to ‘the Government’s Rules of Sourcing’.

    “How to provide feedback?

    You can provide feedback on the proposed changes by completing this survey or emailingprocurement@mbie.govt.nz. Consultation closes on Wednesday 5 November 2014 at 5pm.”

    I for one, want it to be a MANDATORY requirement (not just ‘best practice’), for the ‘devilish detail’ to be given on ALL private sector contracts that are awarded by central government / Crown Entities / State-Owned Enterprises.

    The model that I recommend is that provided by Auckland Transport, with the proviso that it applies to ALL awarded contracts – not just those valued at more than $50,000:


    “Awarded contracts
    Auckland Transport is committed to ensuring its procurement activities are undertaken in an ethical and transparent manner.

    The attached lists detail all of the contracts awarded in the previous six months that are valued over $50,000.00. Details include:

    the contract number,
    the contract name,
    the supplier, and the
    award value.

    View the latest awarded contracts list (PDF 64KB)

    Disclaimer: we endeavour to list all contracts awarded above the value of $50,000.00 in the previous six months. Whilst all possible care and effort has been taken to ensure accuracy in this list, we accept no responsibility for any errors or omissions. Accordingly, this list should be used for reference only.




    “What are the proposed changes?

    Changes include aligning Extended Procurement Forecasts with government’s four year planning cycle (Rule 18.2) and modifying the scope of the opt out rule to strengthen good practice (Rule 13.3).

    Other proposed changes are mainly for clarification or to reflect the Government’s decision to make the Rules mandatory for 103 Crown Entities.”


    The Government Rules of Sourcing

    Rules Review October 2014

    MBIE invites feedback to proposed changes to the Government Rules of Sourcing from Wednesday 15 October to Wednesday 5 November 2014 from interested parties. We expect to launch a revised version of the Rules in February 2015.

    To view the proposed changes read the Government Rules of Source Third Edition Consultation [3.18 MB PDF]. Tracked changes within the consultation draft are intentional.

    How to provide feedback?
    You can provide feedback on the proposed changes by completing this survey or emailingprocurement@mbie.govt.nz. Consultation closes on Wednesday 5 November 2014 at 5pm.

    What are the proposed changes?

    Changes include aligning Extended Procurement Forecasts with government’s four year planning cycle (Rule 18.2) and modifying the scope of the opt out rule to strengthen good practice (Rule 13.3).

    Other proposed changes are mainly for clarification or to reflect the Government’s decision to make the Rules mandatory for 103 Crown Entities.


    The Government Rules of Sourcing

    About the Rules
    The purpose of the Rules
    Applying the Rules
    Changes in procurement practice
    The Rules and our international commitments
    Your transition to the Rules
    Rules Review October 2014
    More reading/FAQs
    Archived material

    About the Rules
    The Government Rules of Sourcing (the Rules) [1.1 MB PDF] represent the government’s standards of good practice for procurement planning, approaching the market and contracting.

    Cabinet has endorsed the Rules (CAB Min (13) 10/4A) and they came into effect on 1 October 2013. The Rules replaced the 2006 Mandatory Rules for Procurement by Departments.

    The Rules were launched on 24 April 2013 and the first edition came into force on 1 October 2013. The Rules were amended in May 2014, to implement Cabinet’s decision to rescind rule 67, which required agencies to source cleaning services only from members of the Building Services Contractors Association. The second edition came into effect on 26 May 2014.

    Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce announces the Rules of Government Sourcing

    Cabinet Minute for Government Rules of Sourcing (CAB Min (13) 10/4A) [54 KB PDF]

    The purpose of the Rules
    The Rules give us the foundations to:

    support more productive relationships with businesses as suppliers
    deliver innovative and effective solutions that get the best value for New Zealanders
    help our suppliers become more competitive in international markets.

    Applying the Rules
    Applying the Rules help us to:

    strengthen our accountability
    promote our values
    design robust processes that build:
    confidence in government procurement practices
    greater trust that our spending is well planned and executed
    deliver better public services
    support economic growth.

    Changes in procurement practice
    The Rules encourage us to:

    use more strategic approaches and commercial expertise eg e-procurement
    engage with the market early to stimulate competition and innovation
    work with suppliers to create better solutions.

    The Rules and our international commitments
    The Rules are the single source of all New Zealand’s commitments on government procurement, including international agreements and treaties.

    The Rules align with international good practice and show that New Zealand:

    is a desirable trading partner
    has a competitive productive supply base
    government is open, transparent and accountable.

    Your transition to the Rules
    To help you transition to the Rules, the following resources are available:

    an internal communications pack
    Communications guide [111 KB PDF]
    Presentation: 15 minute summary [756 KB PPTX]
    Presentation: 1 hour overview [1.3 MB PPTX]
    Training module: 3 hours training presentation [4.5 MB PPTX]

    Rules Review October 2014
    MBIE invites feedback to proposed changes to the Government Rules of Sourcing from Wednesday 15 October to Wednesday 5 November 2014 from interested parties. We expect to launch a revised version of the Rules in February 2015.

    To view the proposed changes read the Government Rules of Source Third Edition Consultation [3.18 MB PDF]. Tracked changes within the consultation draft are intentional.

    How to provide feedback?
    You can provide feedback on the proposed changes by completing this survey or emailingprocurement@mbie.govt.nz. Consultation closes on Wednesday 5 November 2014 at 5pm.

    What are the proposed changes?
    Changes include aligning Extended Procurement Forecasts with government’s four year planning cycle (Rule 18.2) and modifying the scope of the opt out rule to strengthen good practice (Rule 13.3).

    Other proposed changes are mainly for clarification or to reflect the Government’s decision to make the Rules mandatory for 103 Crown Entities.

    What won’t change?
    Open tender thresholds and requirements, and how the rules apply to different tiers of government are outside the scope of the review.

    For more information read the Government Rules of Sourcing Review 2014 Frequently Asked Questions [255 KB PDF].

    We expect to issue a new edition of the Rules in February 2015.

    The Rules reflect government policy, which may change over time. After completing this review, MBIE will check the Rules annually so they remain current.


    Penny Bright

    ‘Anti-corruption whistle-blower’

  14. greywarshark 16

    Northland was devastated by floods earlier this year. Transport Minister Brownlee was on top of it though. But the road damage and the promise of assistance has entered the stream of consciousness and got drowned. A suggestion of help at the time, once, well time has moved on, other priorities, huge concerns. Not a Colossus who stands astride NZ from north to south, from Kaitaia to Christchurch. That would split you up the middle heh heh.
    The Editor of the Northland Age muses wryly:

    less than three months ago from then [the general election, by] Transport Minister Gerry Brownlee to the damage that was done to roads around the Far North by an exceptionally wet and stormy winter of 2014. …now calls into question whether there was ever any intention of displaying such largesse, and whether the Far North’s ratepayers have the friend in Wellington that he led them to believe they did.

    Mr Brownlee said the taxpayer might pick up as much as 90 per cent of the cost of repairing slip-damaged roads (apart from state highways, which are not the ratepayers’ responsibility), the only proviso being that the NZTA would whip out its chequebook only if the damage was bad enough. How ‘bad enough’ might be defined is open to question, but few who live and pay rates here would doubt that the damage done meets that benchmark.

    At the time that Mr Brownlee made his promise the bill was expected to be in the region of $27 million. Since then it’s risen to close to $40 million, but now political enthusiasm for providing assistance above and beyond what might be regarded as a minimum is waning.
    Unless the council can effectively bring pressure to bear on the government, it seems likely that the taxpayer contribution will be less than $10 million, leaving ratepayers to find the rest.

    This man is too big to fail!

  15. whew..!..that’s a relief..!

    ..labour are fully onside with key..

    ..we march to this new long-war with a unified voice…!

    ..just like we have done so many times before…

    ..we’ll save the regrets for later..shall we…?

    ..and anette king gets a special groin-stretching long-bow-award..

    ..for quoting ghandi in her pimping for war..


    • to their credit..the greens are speaking against going to war..

      ..and the increase in spooking-powers..

      ..(it is actually one of the greens’ finest-moments..in a long time..)

      • phillip ure 17.1.1

        armchair-warrior peters is fair bristling with/from war-fever…

        ..and gives a rambling/incoherent-rant..

        ..blustering/fulminating on matters only clear to him…

        (his followers are watching him with wrinkled-brows..

        ..obviously also wondering what the fuck he is banging on about..)

        ..and he finshes with some old-skool peters..

        ..an anti-immigrants rant..

        ..(ah..!..the memories..!..eh..?..)

        • phillip ure

          flavell uses the platform to give a powerful speech on state terrorism..(parihaka..)

          ..and dunne proves again what a shallow war-mongering prick he is..

          ..and the dweeb from act toadies right on cue…

          • phillip ure

            and then brownlee plays the gun-emplacements-on-north-head-to-protect-us-from-russian-invasion card..

            ..saying the government is doing all this..’to protect us here in nz’..

            ..(interesting way to do it..painting a big bullseye-target on the country..)

            ..and isn’t this humanitarian-aid/training-bullshit the same chimera clark/goff used to get us into that ten-yrs long afghanistan war..?

            ..this all seems so familiar..somehow..

            • phillip ure

              shearer gives perhaps his most literate/coherent speech..

              ..where he seems to be taking an anti-stand..

              .with his best line being pointing out/questioning just what good will our ‘training’ do..

              ..when america has just spent billions and ten yrs training/building an iraqi army..

              ..only to have them fold like over-creased/used origami -paper..

              ..’what good’..?..indeed..!..

              ..(‘origami’ is my simile..not his..wd hate to mis-quote him..)

  16. hi ho..!..hi ho..!..and it’s off to war we go…!


    ..what’s that over there..?..body-bags..!..you say..?..)

  17. lusk/slater acolyte/rightwinger nash is having a very bad hair day..

    ..clearly showing that his fop-hairdo..and his scalp..

    ..will soon be parting company..

    ..i must confess..there is a soupcon of schadenfreude to be had with/from that observation..

    ..as he won’t be taking it well…

    ..this countdown…

    ..we all know that..

  18. Weepus beard 20

    This is the guy who would stop at nothing to get those miners back to their families.

    Guess he stopped…at nothing.


  19. Penny Bright 21

    Ok folks – keeping the pressure on for genuine transparency and accountability – which you cannot have without full and accurate records which are available for public scrutiny?


    5 November 2014

    Feedback from ‘Anti-corruption Public Watchdog’ Penny Bright to improve transparency and accountability re:
    ‘The Government Rules of Sourcing’.

    ( I am the person who has recently received a lot of publicity in my stand against Auckland Council, who have failed to follow statutory provisions for ‘open, transparent and democratically-accountable’ local government, regarding rates spending).


    As an ‘Anti-corruption Public Watchdog /whistle-blower’, I want it to be a MANDATORY requirement (not just ‘best practice’), for the following ‘devilish detail’ to be given for ALL private sector contracts that are awarded by ALL central government / Crown Entities / State-Owned Enterprises and the like.

    The model that I recommend is that provided by Auckland Transport, with the proviso that it applies to ALL awarded contracts – not just those valued at more than $50,000:


    “Awarded contracts

    Auckland Transport is committed to ensuring its procurement activities are undertaken in an ethical and transparent manner.

    The attached lists detail all of the contracts awarded in the previous six months that are valued over $50,000.00. Details include:

    the contract number,
    the contract name,
    the supplier, and the
    award value.

    View the latest awarded contracts list (PDF 64KB)

    Disclaimer: we endeavour to list all contracts awarded above the value of $50,000.00 in the previous six months. Whilst all possible care and effort has been taken to ensure accuracy in this list, we accept no responsibility for any errors or omissions. Accordingly, this list should be used for reference only.



    Taxpayer money is PUBLIC money, and under the Public Records Act 2005, members of the public are entitled to:


    17 Requirement to create and maintain records

    (1)Every public office and local authority must create and maintain full and accurate records of its affairs, in accordance with normal, prudent business practice, including the records of any matter that is contracted out to an independent contractor.

    (2)Every public office must maintain in an accessible form, so as to be able to be used for subsequent reference, all public records that are in its control, until their disposal is authorised by or under this Act or required by or under another Act.

    (3)Every local authority must maintain in an accessible form, so as to be able to be used for subsequent reference, all protected records that are in its control, until their disposal is authorised by or under this Act.



    public record—

    (a)means a record or a class of records, in any form, in whole or in part, created or received (whether before or after the commencement of this Act) by a public office in the conduct of its affairs; and

    (i)a record or a class of records declared under section 5(1)(a)(ii) to be a public record for the purposes of this Act; and
    (ii)estray records; but

    public office—

    (a)means the legislative, executive, and judicial branches of the Government of New Zealand; and

    (b)means the agencies or instruments of those branches of government; and

    (c)includes (without limiting the agencies or instruments)—

    (i)departments as defined in section 2 of the State Sector Act 1988; and
    (ii)Offices of Parliament as defined in section 2(1) of the Public Finance Act 1989; and
    (iii)State enterprises as defined in section 2 of the State-Owned Enterprises Act 1986; and
    (iv)Crown entities as defined in section 7(1) of the Crown Entities Act 2004; and
    (v)the Parliamentary Counsel Office; and
    (vi)the Parliamentary Service; and
    (vii)the Office of the Clerk of the House of Representatives; and
    (viii)the New Zealand Police; and


    3 Purposes of Act

    The purposes of this Act are—

    (a)to provide for the continuation of the repository of public archives called the National Archives with the name Archives New Zealand (Te Rua Mahara o te Kāwanatanga); and

    (b)to provide for the role of the Chief Archivist in developing and supporting government recordkeeping, including making independent determinations on the disposal of public records and certain local authority archives; and

    (c)to enable the Government to be held accountable by—

    (i)ensuring that full and accurate records of the affairs of central and local government are created and maintained; and
    (ii)providing for the preservation of, and public access to, records of long-term value; and

    (d)to enhance public confidence in the integrity of public records and local authority records; and

    (e)to provide an appropriate framework within which public offices and local authorities create and maintain public records and local authority records, as the case may be; and

    (f)through the systematic creation and preservation of public archives and local authority archives, to enhance the accessibility of records that are relevant to the historical and cultural heritage of New Zealand and to New Zealanders’ sense of their national identity; and

    (g)to encourage the spirit of partnership and goodwill envisaged by the Treaty of Waitangi (Te Tiriti o Waitangi), as provided for by section 7; and

    (h)to support the safekeeping of private records.


    In parallel with ensuring that information on awarded contracts is available for public scrutiny – the directly-related issue is ‘cost-benefit’ analysis, which PROVES that all this contracting out to private sector consultants and contractors is a more ‘cost-effective’ use of public monies (and this equally applies to local government contracting), than ‘in-house’ provision, under the public service model.

    Research that I have independently carried out has proved that once central and local government get into contracting out of services formerly provided ‘in-house’ by directly employed ‘public servants’, then the contracts have to be ‘managed’.

    What I have discovered is that because ‘public servant /’bureaucrats’ are seen to be ‘too dumb’ to know how to do contract management – this is then contracted out to private consultants, who then ‘project manage’ the works contractors.

    So – a single layer of directly employed, ‘not-for-profit public service bureaucracy’ is replaced by a double layer of ‘for profit, private sector contractocracy’.

    If there is no ‘cost-benefit’ analysis which PROVES that this ‘contractocracy’ is more cost-effective for the public majority of taxpayers – then how is this not ‘corporate welfare’ on a grand scale?

    In order to ‘follow the dollar’ – we first need to know EXACTLY where this public dollar is being spent …..

    FYI – here is a Press Release that I wrote on these matters back in November 2011:


    “PRESS RELEASE: Independent Candidate for Epsom Penny Bright:
    “How many billion$ of public monies could be saved by ‘CUTTING OUT THE CONTRACTORS’?

    3 November 2011

    Where’s National’s ‘corporate welfare’ reform?

    Which of the maor political parties are pushing for ‘corporate welfare’ reform and shrinking the long-term dependency of the private sector on our public monies?

    Where is the ‘devilish detail’ at both local and central government level – which shows EXACTLY where our public rates and taxes are being spent on private sector consultants and contractors?

    Why aren’t the names of the consultant(s)/ contrators(s) – the scope, term and value of these contracts, published in Council or central government Annual Reports – so this information on the spending of OUR public monies is available for public scrutiny?

    Where are the publicly-available ‘Registers of Interests’ for those local government elected representatives, and staff responsible for property and procurement, in order to help guard against possible ‘conflicts of interest’ between those who ‘give’ the contracts and those who ‘get’ the contracts?

    Where’s the ‘transparency’?

    Given that New Zealand is ‘perceived’ to be the least corrupt country in the world – along with Denmark and Singapore, according to Transparency International’s 2010 ‘Corruption Perception Index – shouldn’t we arguably be the most transparent?

    Going back a step – where are the New Zealand ‘cost-benefit’ analyses which prove that the old ‘Rogernomic$ mantra – public is bad – private (contracting) is good’ can be substantiated by FACTS and EVIDENCE?……………………”


    Penny Bright

    Attendee: Australian Public Sector Anti-Corruption Conference 2009
    Attendee: Transparency International Anti-Corruption Conference 2010
    Attendee: Australian Public Sector Anti-Corruption Conference 2013
    Attendee: G20 Anti-Corruption Conference 2014

    2013 Auckland Mayoral candidate (polled 4th with 11,723 votes)


  20. Aerobubble 22

    Councils have to legislate smoking of pot in public. Yet they cannot as its illegal. Summer is coming on, and again I find a nice bench to sit on, and once again a disheveled person rocks up and lights up, upwind from me.

  21. Manuka AOR 23

    Gough Whitlam Memorial today.

    “Noel Pearson’s eulogy for Gough Whitlam praised as one for the ages”

    “Indigenous leader Noel Pearson’s powerful eulogy for Gough Whitlam at his state memorial service is being hailed on social media as a one of the best political speeches of our time.

    “The chairman of the Cape York Group paid tribute to “this old man” Whitlam, praising his foresight and moral vision in striving for universal opportunity in Australia.

    “He even channelled Monty Python as he listed Whitlam’s achievements, saying: “And what did the Romans ever do for us anyway?”, to laughter and clapping from the audience. He then answered his own question, reeling off a great list of Whitlam’s achievements, including Medibank, the abolition of conscription, the introduction of student financial assistance and Aboriginal land rights.

    “Mr Pearson said as a person born into poverty and discrimination, he spoke of “this old man’s legacy with no partisan brief”. ”

    Video at: http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/noel-pearsons-eulogy-for-gough-whitlam-praised-as-one-for-the-ages-20141105-11h7vm.html#ixzz3IAK2PSEf

  22. Ad 26

    Looks like Labor Australia, Labour New Zealand, French Socialists, US Democrats, German Social Democrats, and practically every other similar party have got similar lessons to learn together. Time to compare notes!

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