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Open mike 07/03/2011

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, March 7th, 2011 - 41 comments
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41 comments on “Open mike 07/03/2011 ”

  1. ZeeBop 1

    ChCh to suffer a skill shortage, on top of NZ national shortage that’s got to hurt. But really is it any surprise when running the economy so close to the bone (due to no Capital Gains Tax), that when a crisis does hit a region it falls over and finds it harder to recover. What happens when the nation as a whole is hit by a world crisis? Resilience requires a deep broad sustainable economy, and NZ is woefully lacking in that regard.

    • Colonial Viper 1.1

      But really is it any surprise when running the economy so close to the bone (due to no Capital Gains Tax)

      I’m figuring we also need a land tax (and possibly other asset tax e.g. on stocks and bonds) as well as a CGT.

      Perhaps 1% per year for each dollar over the first $1M net assets held.

  2. I thought I would offer a couple of thoughts on Botany after looking at the booth results and comparing them to the 2008 results.

    The electorate is essentially 3 strong Labour booths and 17 strong National booths. At the last election in the most marginal National booth its vote was 22% ahead of Labour’s.

    In the by election (on election night figures) in the 3 Labour booths the Labour share of the vote went from 66% to a staggering 86% of the vote. Turn out was 75% of the 2008 figures.

    In the 17 National booths turn out was a dismal 53% of the 2008 vote and the overall lead held by National remained about the same. But one of their booths became marginal with Ross winning by 22 votes out of a total of 611 cost.

    National hurt Labour last time in its heartland where many Labour people decided to give Key a chance. Looks like they are now regretting that decision.

    Figures are based on a comparison to the party vote. Suggestions that the comparison should be on a comparison to the Wong/Tawa vote are, well, silly.

    • Herodotus 2.1

      MS- the by election was a waste of time on may levels and for me nothing can be taken from it, especially with Chch. And i was deeply taken back by Martys comment that “Lab were not even trying”, yesterday. Nice to see that those in the area are not worth the effort, yet Mt Albert and Mana have greater value, this was also confirmed by the action s of Lab MP’s couldnt care 🙁

      • mickysavage 2.1.1

        I can assure you Herodotus that there was a great deal of work by activists on the campaign. Labour did engage but like so many issues there was an attempt by the right to box us in.

        If we said that we were going to try and win the seat and lost then we would have been accused of being crazy and a loss as a setback.

        If we said that we were never going to win then we would have been (and have been) accused of not trying.

        Either way the right was fashioning a club to beat us with. No matter what the decision was we would be attacked.

        MartyG is a very perceptive writer whose posts I enjoy but he is not a friend of Labour and he does not know what is happening on the ground in Auckland.

        As for trying in Mt Albert and Mana, they are Labour seats. If they were lost this would cause huge damage to the Labour Party.

        I must express some frustration at this particular attack line. National is never subject to the same sort of criticism perhaps because the left realise that it is silly.

        Have a look at the booth figures. The return to strength of the Labour heartland area is really encouraging.

        • Herodotus

          The weather was crap no local issue (Like Mt Albert) to inflame the electorate, (or a canditate and team to centre media as M.Lee was able to do), and a very low turnout.
          For me (excusing the Chch effect in the area and media attention) this was a platform for the electorate to voice approval/dissatisfaction to the direction Nat was taking the country. a mini referendum.
          “As for trying in Mt Albert and Mana, they are Labour seats. If they were lost this would cause huge damage to the Labour Party.” Perhaps like in 90 rugby if we had lost to Aussie instead of winning 6-3 at Eden Park. We may have changed the team with a better result in 91 RWC. To bring it back (As I have no connection with the Lab party and cannot see what is happening within), a lose or major scare maybe what Lab requires to become dominate again. Just say for the voter Lab is progressing along the wrong track, how else can they get a sharp short shock to reacess what the strategy is. Better to lose a by election than an election to learn.
          “Labour did engage but like so many issues there was an attempt by the right to box us in”- Nat know how Lab act and vice versa, if what yo say is correct that Lab cannot get their message out without being interfeared with by Nat- perhaps Lab requires new staff and skills to enable the message to get out. I am sure that those within Lab do the same to Nats message.
          I was dissappointed by Lab in Botany (some due to Mallards attack) but that as an observer there was opportunity to publiclly damage the course that NZ is on, but this was not taken and for me this was not evident pre Feb 22nd.
          Michael Wood at least was out there, bar a long time local resident & MP in R Robertson there was little evidence of other Lab big guns.
          But MS keep up the fight- your man did OK

          • mickysavage

            Hi Herodotus

            “Labour did engage but like so many issues there was an attempt by the right to box us in”- Nat know how Lab act and vice versa, if what yo say is correct that Lab cannot get their message out without being interfeared with by Nat- perhaps Lab requires new staff and skills to enable the message to get out.

            It is not a case of labour’s message management, it is just the case that no matter what the issue or stance the right have attack lines covering every alternative. There is no desire to address the issue or attempt to find an area of agreement, there is just attack. There is no way to counter this.

            The behaviour turns ordinary people off politics. Instead of seeing a debate developing they see sticks being waved around. It disengages ordinary people from politics. Perhaps this is the intent.

      • lprent 2.1.2

        The labour campaign in botany looked pretty good to me. From what I understood before I got diverted into hospital they were targeting specific areas and groups of people. From the polling booth results they achieved it.

        Good dry run for candidates in electorates without too much data. But diverting too much effort in an election year is not that good an idea. It was a by election in a safe seat for national. There was no party vote to capture.

    • Vicky32 2.2

      TV3 campaigning on behalf of National, as I saw them do, can’t have helped..

  3. joe90 3

    All you ever needed to know about Glenn Beck.

    What Everyone Needs to Know About Beck’s Honesty, Political Values and Methods of Communication

    • Cnr Joe 3.1

      Oh Joe90, Beck will consume himself, what emerges from his pyre of rightness will be smelly and quite hard to scrub.

      • joe90 3.1.1

        What emerges may be smelly and hard to scrub off but the business man will be quite happy to roll in his millions.

        Glenn Beck Inc., formally known as Mercury Radio Arts (after Orson Welles’ Mercury Theatre on the Air), pulled in $32 million in revenue during the 12 months ended Mar. 1

  4. Sanctuary 5

    I see John Key, Gerry Brownlee and Chris Finlayson all refused to front Morning Report this morning over Brownlee’s comments about Christchurch’s heritage building.A disgraceful reversion to type – they’ve been treating the media with largely unremarked instant arrogance since they won power – but this time the media doesn’t seem so prepared to let them get away with it.

    • Brownlee is now on Radio New Zealand (9:09 am). There are loud skidding sounds as he busily backtracks.

      He denies making the comment where all but four buildings would be demolished. He states that he said “there are many heritage buildings that were damaged and if I had my way they would be demolished tomorrow”.

      He also says that he speaks on behalf of everyone who agrees with him about demolition. Obviously he will not consider the views of opponents when making decisions.

      • Zaphod Beeblebrox 5.1.1

        Ryan asked him what the process would be for planning and decision making in the future and he couldn’t/wouldn’t answer. Why is this guy in charge of anything?

      • Jim MacDonald 5.1.2

        I see the recent events as revealing a Minister of Incompetence and Hot Air deciding he would now do something to shift the perception of incompetence, which has been shaped quite fairly due to his energetic efforts, and then he overshot the target thanks to, whoops, sorry, incompetence. So now he comes across also as hot air.

        • Zaphod Beeblebrox

          He’d be better just to shut up at the moment. He stated that he would like to demolish many of the old buildings left standing but was unable to establish a coherent rationale (they’re all dangerous- how does he know? What about all those dangerous non-heritage buildings? Do we demolish everything to be 100% sure).

          Now he is unable to describe a process other than his stated opinion where these extremely critica and sensitive (not to mention costly to the existing owners) decisions are going to be made. So what is going on?

          During the interview this AM, he claimed that he knew about heritage because he helped preserve the Deans Bush Homestead. Obviously that expertise does not extend to our planning and building laws and the expectation that citizens get a say in the development of their urban environment.

          • Armchair Critic

            Obviously that expertise does not extend to our planning and building laws and the expectation that citizens get a say in the development of their urban environment.
            He can teach you how to make a mean spice rack, though. Or a paper towel roll holder.

  5. Colonial Viper 6

    Irish Voters sweep ruling party out after economic and banking disaster: New crowd to do exactly the same

    And you wonder why voters get tired of tweedledum and tweedledee. Forget democracy, its the European Central Bank who runs Ireland.



  6. todd 7

    This website appears to be blocked from your country = The Jackal 🙁 Was it something I said?

  7. joe90 8

    Think Progress on disenfranchisement schemes.

    My favourite comes from New Hampshire where thousands of students and service men and women could become ineligible to vote.

    the legislation is nececessary because there “are kids voting liberal, voting their feelings, with no life experience.”

    • ianmac 8.1

      Terrifying Joe. Especially coming from the country that spends trillions on “giving democracy” to “backward” countries like Iraq and Afghanistan.

      • Colonial Viper 8.1.1

        I love how the US runs their elections on weekdays, when most of the working class have to be at their place of employment. And this is often a long commute from the polling station where they are registered to – which is near their home.

        It’s a cunning plan, Stan.

    • prism 8.2

      You found a shocking piece of news there Joe. It seems like the conservative USA has started a civil war against the others, them non-conservatives. Now that there aren’t simple baddies in the commie world to hate and fear they are turning their fear and loathing on other USA citizens who aren’t of the right beliefs to be invited to The Tea Party. Yet the country still struts and preaches on the world stage trying to draw on its past reserves of nobility of purpose and integrity, unfortunately now empty and bankrupt.

  8. KINTO 9

    Why is Farrar attacking teachers again?

  9. Rob 10

    ‘Cause they picked on him at school

  10. Draco T Bastard 11

    Confirmed: Brownlee made it up

    So there you have it. Confronted with a tricky line of questioning in the House, Brownlee sat down with his political hacks and made up policy out of whole cloth without advice or Cabinet authority.

    So would that be caught lying to parliament or caught fantasising to parliament? Is there a difference?

  11. Having left school at 14 im not a mathematical genius but I’m wondering why the insurance and earthquake commision is not covering most of the expense in Christchurch.It seem to me that millions of dollars are being donated so why is this government talking us up,to expect massive cuts to welfare ,and cut backs health and education.?

    • Draco T Bastard 12.1

      Because they want to cut welfare, education and health so that they can cut taxes on the rich even more.

      • Treetop 12.1.1

        And for places like Fletchers to increase their profit margin. This morning some joker in building said that work had not gone ahead in Christchurch because Fletchers had not contracted work out and that they were waiting until 1 April. This is to do with the September earthquake. Hill – Cone is right about Keys tight circle big business buddies handing out scraps to the mannual labour small fry in the building industry. Key is not bothered with small business.

    • Bill 12.2

      Why? Really?!

      Might it simply be because National’s ideology leads them to want to cut levels of state funding in areas of welfare and health and education etc. But since said cuts would be unpopular, they have to pick up and run with any available excuse as a cover?

      If it wasn’t the earthquake (which is mostly covered by EQC insurance), it would be because of the price of oil or because Labour left such an economic mess or because of some woolly, groundless and therefore uninvestigatable ‘global situation beyond their control’…such as Obama farting at an inopportune moment unleashing a hurricane of a butterfly effect.

      The good thing is that ‘everybody’ knows this. The bad thing is that ‘everybody’ also knows there is no opposition offering anything substantially different.

  12. The Voice of Reason 13

    Key’s announced a national memorial service to remember quake victims which will be held at Hagley Park on Friday 18 March. The service starts at 12.45pm and includes two minutes’ silence at 12.51pm.

    There will be a provincial holiday on the day so Cantabs can attend. Not a national holiday mind, just Canterbury only, because nobody else was affected by the quake.

    • Anne 13.1

      Sounds to me like another C/T inspired photo and film op. for JonKey. Can see the opening shots on the 6pm news already… John and Bronagh standing there, showered and spruced, hands over hearts singing the National Anthem along with the local brass and pipe bands. That’s going to go down well with the eastern suburbs in CHCH while they continue to sleep under the stars with no water, sewage or – in many cases – power.

    • ianmac 13.2

      And the announcement that many houses will be bulldozed on the East side and houses will be built on other land. Seems like a good idea instead of building that huge subterranean wall. But the time lag will probably be huge.

  13. joe90 14

    Ethanol, will the real beneficiary stand up.

    The direct beneficiaries of the VEETC* are the gasoline blenders who receive the 45 cents per gallon tax credit. These include large corporations like BP, Shell and ExxonMobil.

    Volumetric Ethanol Excise Tax Credit* (VEETC)

  14. Wow Cameron just praised Jami Lee-Ross for resigning immediately and not double dipping and then criticised Labour double dippers who stayed on.

    The last Councillor who did this was Peseta Sam Lotu Iiga who was a member of the National Party.

    Is Cameron confused??

    Link is at http://whaleoil.gotcha.co.nz/?p=21617

  15. David 16

    Around 30 Sky city workers have been locked out. The bosses say they came come back when they sign individual (and therefore non-union) agreements.

    Unite and the SFWU have called all members out in response. Their press release says 200 have walked out.

    All through today they have maintained a serious picketing to stop customers and scabs from getting through.

    I visited the picket twice this afternoon, both times saw company heavies trying to push through the picket. A paddy wagon was arriving just as I left, at 7 tonight.

    Sky City is probably the biggest private sector union site in central Auckland. Workers there have been fighting to build and maintain their union for the last decade.

    This looks like being a crucial battle for unionization of low paid service workers.

    If your in Auckland try and get down there to show your support and help out on the picket line.

    Here’s what one of the two unions involved has to say:

    Workers locked out at SkyCity casino in wage dispute

    New Zealand’s largest casino has begun locking out its workforce in an attempt by the company to force unionised employees to accept a new agreement.

    Dozens of Unite Union and Service and Food Workers Union members have already been told not to return to work unless they leave the union and accept a below cost of living wage offer.

    Over a thousand union members are affected by the lockout threat, after negotiations for a new collective agreement broke down and industrial action began on New Year’s Eve.

    The major claims of the union were for a minimum wage of $15 hr for all workers, a cost of living wage increase and for security of hours for part time staff. SkyCity Entertainment Group, which owns the casino projects a massive net profit of $130 million for this year.

    “Thousands of casino workers who want a living wage and a fair pay rise this year have been affected by a lockout that is designed to intimidate and shock them into accepting poverty wages and a miserable offer from a very wealthy company,” said Unite Union General Secretary Matt McCarten.

    “Unite is not intimidated by lockouts and we will attempt to negotiate an end to the dispute today. We hope that the company will meet with us and the workers affected to settle the bargaining with a settlement that both parties can agree to,” continued Mr. McCarten.

    “SkyCity have decided to lockout their workforce to starve their employees into accepting an offer that will bind our members and their families to poverty wages. We intend to stand our ground and will negotiate a fair settlement today. We do not want to see union members starved into accepting a bad offer.

    “We are also asking for everyone who opposes these bully-boy tactics to join us outside the casino today to protest. We will be asking customers to show their support by not going in,” concluded Mr McCarten.

    Matt McCarten is available for comment on 029 568 4422. Mike Treen (Unite casino organiser) is available on 029 525 4744.

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