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Open mike 09/04/2016

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, April 9th, 2016 - 133 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

openmikeOpen mike is your post.

For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose. The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).

Step up to the mike …

133 comments on “Open mike 09/04/2016 ”

  1. Paul 1

    Wonder who the 6 donors were.
    Wonder if one was Donghua Liu.
    Wonder if it was to help Oravida buy up Ashburton’s water.


    • mary_a 1.1

      @ Paul (1) – Enough evidence that FJK is a Traitor! Why the desperation to get HIS flag across the line?

      And isn’t it interesting that the NZH article from David Fisher is not open for comment or debate?

      • Paul 1.1.1

        Key meets in secret with Chinese donors to raise money for flag change??? If you’re not angry yet you’re not paying attention!


      • Paul 1.1.2

        Key meets in secret with Chinese donors to raise money for flag change??? If you’re not angry yet you’re not paying attention!


        • Jenny

          Treason is not too strong a word for this behaviour.

          • Paul

            [tree-zuh n]

            1.the offense of acting to overthrow one’s government or to harm or kill its sovereign.
            2. a violation of allegiance to one’s sovereign or to one’s state.
            3. the betrayal of a trust or confidence; breach of faith; treachery.


            • Jenny

              Hi Paul,
              “…the offense of acting to overthrow one’s government or to harm or kill its sovereign.”

              The definition of acting to overthrow one’s government or to harm or kill its sovereign, is termed in law “High Treason”.

              There is no case to argue that John Key is guilty of “High Treason”.

              There is a argument that he is guilty of the lesser charge, as defined:

              “3. the betrayal of a trust or confidence; breach of faith; treachery.”


              noun, plural treacheries.

              1.violation of faith; betrayal of trust; treason.

              2.an act of perfidy, faithlessness, or treason.


              Throughout human history, traitors have been considered even worse than open enemies.
              This human antipathy toward traitors, has been suggested as a reason why many working people, impacted by Labour’s neo-liberal direction during the 1980s, voted for National in big numbers through the ’90s. (And even, why many still do.)

              “One Who Delivers”

              In Dante Alighieri’s Inferno, the ninth and lowest circle of Hell is reserved for traitors; Judas Iscariot, who betrayed Jesus, suffers the worst torments of all: being constantly gnawed at by one of Lucifer’s own three mouths. His treachery is considered so notorious that his name has long been synonymous with traitor, a fate he shares with Benedict Arnold, Vidkun Quisling, Marcus Junius Brutus (who too is depicted in Dante’s Inferno, suffering the same fate as Judas along with Cassius Longinus). Indeed, the etymology of the word traitor originates with Judas’ handing over of Jesus to the chief priests, captains of the temple and elders (Luke 22:52): the word is derived from the Latin traditor which means “one who delivers.”


          • Jenny

            Prime Minister John Key sullies New Zealand’s reputation. And then lies and tries to cover it up.


            You decide.


            “We found pedophiles in the data, people, bad people, really bad people. We found mafia figures. Not just from Italy, but from Japan from America from everywhere, and they were convicted people.”

            As the sickening revelations of international tax evasion by criminal gangs and corrupt government officials around the world keep pouring out.
            New Zealand’s role revealed in this scandal, comes under investigation.

            Radio NZ Morning Report, Guyon Espina interviews Gerard Ryle.

            Gerard Ryle is the director of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists.
            The ICIJ is the organisation that headed the investigation of the so called, leaked “Panama Papers” and oversaw their global release.

            NZ “a very nice front for criminals” – Panama Papers journalist

            8:25 am on 8 April 2016


            @2:36 Minutes:

            Gerard Ryle “….. Looking at this whole issue of tax havens, now for a number of years, it’s a well known among people who know these things, that New Zealand is a really soft touch.
            It’s very easy to set up companies; It’s a first world country, so people basically don’t think of bad things happening out of New Zealand; So it’s a very nice front for criminals.”

            @2:57 Minutes:

            Guyon Espiner “That’s the thing isn’t it? You are able to effectively buy the country’s name?”

            “It is not seen as a tax haven, yet has some of the conditions of a a tax haven?”

            “And has the benefit of that reputational strength, so in someways as you see it; looking through these kinds of papers, New Zealand is a pretty attractive destination for people who want to hide money?”

            @3:18 Minutes:

            Gerard Ryle “Exactly, and I think, You know, I mean, there have been many warning signs over the last couple of years. We all heard about the Taylors a few years ago. These were people who were basically setting up offshore accounts in the same way. And in fact the Taylors, when you dig into the Panama Papers, they were a huge user of Mossack Fonseca.”

            “What the Taylors basically did was, set up offshore, was setting up shell companies for shipping arms around the world. And also people who were laundering money for drug cartels in South America.”

            @3:50 Minutes:

            Guyon Espiner “So what do you think of the credibility of the statement from Government Ministers that New Zealand isn’t a tax haven?”

            Gerard Ryle “Well I think it is rubbish.”

            “The bottom line is, it is a very easy jurisdiction to operate in. And it is very secretive.”

            @4:55 Minutes:

            Gerard Ryle “There is one product in the offshore world. And there is only one product. And that product is secrecy. And when you have secrecy you have the potential for wrong doing, and they will defend that world all the time by saying that it’s perfectly legitimate, that this is all part of international business.”

            “But the bottom line is that the people who are doing legitimate business are standing next to people who are doing bad things, like laundering money, or drugs.”

            “We found pedophiles in the data, people, bad people, really bad people. We found mafia figures. Not just from Italy, but from Japan from America from everywhere, and they were convicted people.”

            • smokes kreen

              The ICIJ has published some very interesting data relating to tax havens around the world and despite what the PM and other Ministers say, New Zealand is named as a tax haven in one of the graphs produced. Take a look at the link (under the headline “From the Caribbean to the Pacific: tax havens used by Mossack Fonseca”). https://panamapapers.icij.org/graphs/

              This situation needs to be rectified to salvage what is left of NZ’s international reputation before it is too late.

    • Lucy 1.2

      @Paul the man is a money grabber and I bet if the chairman of the National Party was there then he would have had his hand out. I thought they were not allowed to have fund raising in the halls of Parliament?

      • Paul 1.2.1

        This is another story showing the rot and corruption at the heart of this cadre running the country, yet the main story is still the Panama Papers.
        Key would accept any distraction to avoid that being investigated.

      • left for dead 1.2.2

        I wonder Lucy if Dr Mapp could explain this 👿

      • alwyn 1.2.3

        Your comment intrigues me. Can you please explain how “a private room of an Auckland Chinese restaurant” is somehow “the halls of Parliament”?
        I thought that “the halls of Parliament” were in Thorndon in Wellington.

    • Anne 1.3

      Andrew Little says “It looks like a National Party project.”

      It WAS a National Party project from start to finish – even down to the colours chosen for the replacement flag.

      Well, that little bit of subterfuge isn’t going to make those wealthy Chinese involved very popular with the rest of us.

      • Paul 1.3.1

        And couldn’t that be a handy diversion from looking into the links between Key and Panama?

  2. Paul 2

    The Panama Papers show us once and for all we can’t afford the rich.

    ” the truth is that we have all been robbed, systematically, by the world’s wealthiest people, for decades. They have used those stolen dollars to build yet more wealth for themselves, and all the while we have been arguing with ourselves over what to do with the leftover pennies.”


    • Lucy 2.1

      @Paul had a look at the personnel at IJIC and NZ has one investigative journalist Nicky Hager wonder if the police were looking for information on Panama Papers when they took his computers?

      • Paul 2.1.1

        Quite possibly.

      • mary_a 2.1.2

        I can almost guarantee it Lucy (2.1). The exposure of the Panama documents throw a whole new perspective on the reason for the police raid and destruction of Nicky’s digital information.

  3. Tautoko Mangō Mata 3

    More fallout from the secrecy of the TPP negotiations- in Japan. Good!

    Diet erupts in outrage as ex-minister’s TPP manuscript reveals details Abe kept under wraps

    The opposition Democratic Party boycotted Diet deliberation Friday on the Trans-Pacific Partnership after it obtained a manuscript of memoirs authored by former farm minister Koya Nishikawa. The book, which was to be published next month, reveals details of what went on in negotiations behind closed doors.

    DP lawmaker Yuichiro Tamaki, who obtained the manuscript, first brought up the issue in the Diet on Thursday.

    Tamaki said the book reveals that U.S. negotiators offered concessions one month before U.S. President Barack Obama visited Japan in April 2014.

    The DP is indignant that lawmakers were unaware of this until now. Documents they had access to were largely redacted and contained no mention of the supposed U.S. offer.
    Apparently shaken by the stir his book has caused, Nishikawa later told reporters he will not send it into print.

    The book, titled “The Truth about TPP,” was slated to hit bookstores in May. Nishikawa chairs the TPP special committee that is currently deliberating ratification of the TPP and related domestic bills.

    The TPP process has been illegitimate, unethical and undemocratic because the major stakeholders, the people of each state, were not treated as stakeholders and were kept out of negotiations that involved the trading of their laws, regulations and signing up to a privatised, extrajudicial tribunal system that *claims precedence over each state’s own domestic judicial system.

    *For the first time in treaty-based ISDS proceedings, an arbitral tribunal affirmed its jurisdiction over a counterclaim lodged by a respondent State against the investor.

    Surely this invalid process should make the agreement invalid.

    • saveNZ 3.1

      +1 TMM – looks like Key and Mitchell are rushing our TPPA process as fast as possible to force the biggest corporate welfare transfer to corporations as quickly as possible before more ‘panama papers’ disclosures and links are made.


    • Draco T Bastard 3.2

      The TPP process has been illegitimate, unethical and undemocratic because the major stakeholders, the people of each state, were not treated as stakeholders

      Seen that happening more and more where the government thinks that ‘stakeholders’ are the businesses that may be affected while ignoring the real stakeholders – the community around the area/nation. I first noticed it under the last Labour led government.

      • Molly 3.2.1

        Actually was thinking to myself that “shareholders” seem to hold an elevated status above anyone else at present.

        Forget the current flawed system that calls itself democracy – “one vote per citizen in country of birth or citizenship”. The world is being shaped by those shareholders who can ask their corporate lawyers to draft “agreements” that ensure their right to accumulate wealth globally is not interfered with by those self-same citizens.

        • Draco T Bastard

          The world is being shaped by those shareholders who can ask their corporate lawyers to draft “agreements” that ensure their right to accumulate wealth globally is not interfered with by those self-same citizens.


          Capitalism is anathema to democracy. It’s why we have representative democracy (really an elected dictatorship) rather than participatory democracy. The rich are terrified that the people will vote rich people out of existence.

          Considering that we can’t afford the rich this is exactly what needs to be done.

  4. Paul 4

    David Cameron on the brink.


    What is needed for a closer inspection of our own share trader PM?
    Does the Herald’s editorial suggest a turning of the tide?

    ‘John Key is taking a risk defending the foreign trust regime in the wake of the global trust fund scandal and its New Zealand links.
    If the Prime Minister assumes that the issue may be over within the week, then he is calculating that nothing else with New Zealand connections is lurking in the devastating leak of records from Panama law firm Mossack Fonseca. Mr Key insists New Zealand is not a tax haven but even if it does not fit the criteria, the existence here of nearly 12,000 foreign trusts suggests the financial rules, such as they are, appeal to the industry
    Mr Key might feel immune from the mounting international clamour against the activities of the super-wealthy, but the fact remains that the exploitation of loopholes is often at the expense of ordinary taxpayers because it deprives the public accounts of revenue to invest in education, health and social services.
    The presence of seemingly untouchable foreign trusts and the recent disclosure of corporate profit shifting contributes to a picture that New Zealand, like many Western nations, accommodates an elite operating beyond the rules which govern the rest of the community. It is likely to become for Mr Key an increasingly indefensible position.’


    Pity it forgot to mention that Key himself is a member of the super wealthy club. That’s club he refers to when he sends soldiers to Iraq. The 1% club.

    Some questions for Gower, Espiner, Ferguson to ask
    Where is his $50 million stored?
    Did he have any involvement with tax havens while at Merrill Lynch?
    Why were laws changed in 2011?

    • mary_a 4.1

      @ Paul (4) – re your link to the NZH editorial ‘Key on Shaky ground.’

      Let’s hope the ground is shaky enough to collapse and swallow the deceptive, treasonous piece of work! He has to go. At least “swine porker” Cameron has fessed up to his investments in foreign trusts, but only when the issue was made public and his family interests were exposed.

      FJK has got his dirty money hidden away somewhere in foreign trusts. But the insult is that during his tenure, he has turned NZ into a money laundering racket, a tax haven where he has made it available for his despotic international corporate cronies to dump their grubby money here, to avoid paying tax! For the country to be mentioned 60,000 plus times in the Panama documents is evidence of this.

      Welcome to NZ, the grubbiest little whorehouse of the pacific, courtesy of Pimp-in- Chief, John Philip Key!

    • Paul 4.2

      Might be worth watching tomorrow on RNZ

      8:12 Insight : The Panama Papers
      This week on Insight, the BBC reports from The British Virgins Islands on how a law firm there has been used by rogue states and oppressive regimes, including North Korea and Syria, to set up shell companies.

      9:06 Mediawatch
      Hundreds of journalists in dozens of countries worked on The Panama Papers but our media were out of the loop. It was a pity – but was it also a problem?

  5. Tautoko Mangō Mata 5

    “A top expert on tax havens explains why the Panama Papers barely scratch the surface”
    transcript of interview with expert economist Gabriel Zucman,an assistant professor of economics at the University of California Berkeley.
    A small excerpt:
    “Offshore accounts also make it harder for everyone else to get rich, because they’re paying higher taxes to make up for the tax dollars the wealthy don’t pay when they shelter their assets overseas.”

    • saveNZ 5.1

      And remember Mossack Fonseca’s is the forth largest law firm supplying services for tax havens – there are 3 others that are larger…..

      And you would probably have to search for Keys family in those, he is unlikely to have it under his own name….

  6. Gruntie 6

    How hard can it be for one of the 300 journalists to do a search of the Panama papers for “John Philip Key”, Parnell, Auckland, New Zealand ? Come on journos

    • Paul 6.1

      They are paid courtiers, not journalists.

    • pat 6.2

      with his background it is more likely his funds will be in one of the many US based dodges…..remember that MF is but one of an estimated 800 firms engaged in facilitating this practice

    • Paul 6.3

      European media writing pro-US stories under CIA pressure – German journo

      • Colonial Viper 6.3.1

        Commentators on RT are calling the Panama papers leak a “hack”, probably by the US intelligence services, aimed at discrediting the Russian and Chinese leadership.

        However, someone didn’t do their homework thoroughly, and David Cameron has now also been caught in the blast.

        (I’d pose the question of whether or not this has been designed to help get rid of Cameron, but that would sound like a “conspiracy theory”)

        • Bill

          Every extended network will have a preferred ‘bag man’.There are other, larger companies in the same business. I guess Mossack Fonseca wasn’t everyone’s preferred firm.

          On one side of the coin, it’s tough shit on those elites who used them that they’ve been exposed. On the other side of the coin, those media outlets that promote the (our) establishment and denigrate ‘official enemies’ must have been kind of whooping. Not every day is a “Fish in a Barrel” day.

          And, just as we have news outlets that always side with ‘our’ establishment, so foreign establishments have their outlets that defend and promote them. So, youknow, if Mossack Fonseca had been full of US shits instead of Russian and Chinese shits, then ‘our’ media would have been running around yelping about some Chinese hack or other.

          They’re all fuckers CV. And none of them deserve any of our good will or forbearance. And no-one is off the hook, given that Mossack Fonseca is not the biggest fish in that particular shoal of firms. The trick, if it can be pulled off, is to lift the lid on the others and not get drawn by any suggestion that the so-called ‘Panama Papers’ constitute the entire picture.

          ‘Our’ propaganda only need extend itself as far as suggesting just that. ‘Panama Papers’ sounds far more comprehensive than Mossack Fonseca papers, yes?

    • mary_a 6.4

      @ Gruntie (6) – I’m pretty sure one of FJK’s trusts is the JPB trust, which could be in his wife’s name and another is a blind trust. Not sure about any others he might and probably has. But maybe JPB might be a good start for searching.

      I’d say the JP is for John Philip and the B is his wife’s first name.

  7. adam 7

    Dr. Jill Stein,if you have not heard of her, her is a shortish interview, which will remedy that for you. P.S if the democrats shaft Bernie, me thinks that this is the women will get those votes.

  8. weka 8

    What if the problem with poverty is it’s profitable?

    ven in the Great Depression, evictions used to be rare. Now, each year, hundreds of thousands, perhaps millions, of renters are put out on the street. Even a paid-up tenant can be easily evicted. Arleen loses one apartment when her son Jori throws a snowball at a passing car and the enraged driver kicks in the front door, and another when the police come after Jori when he kicks a teacher and runs home. Any kind of trouble that brings the police can lead to eviction, which means women can lose their homes if they call 911 when their man beats them up. Think about that the next time someone asks why women don’t call the cops on violent partners.


  9. The Chairman 9

    This (below) requires to be widely highlighted.

    What Export From NZ Is Bigger Than Seafood & Milk Powder Combined?


    • saveNZ 9.1

      @ The Chairman – that is a great link. Shocking.

      • The Chairman 9.1.1


        So much for NZ requiring offshore investment.

        • Draco T Bastard

          No country needs offshore investment because they can always afford to utilise their own resources. Don’t have the knowledge? Then they can use the resources that the can use to develop that knowledge if it’s not already freely available (a lot of the basic knowledge already is).

          Foreign investment is simply another tool of the rich to become richer at everyone else’s expense.

          • Colonial Viper

            No country needs offshore investment because they can always afford to utilise their own resources.

            Yep +1

            • Stuart Munro

              The model is predicated on the investors providing expertise which is absent locally. But counting capital as a ‘scarce resource’ is nonsense in an age of quantitative easing. Following this model is part of what went wrong with NZ governance.

              • Draco T Bastard

                The model is predicated on the investors providing expertise which is absent locally.

                Which almost never happens. What happens in real life is that the new offshore owner will grab the IP and close the business. If it’s left open then it continues to run as it did with little to no input of expertise from the foreign owner.

                In other words, if we want expertise here then we need to develop it here.

                But counting capital as a ‘scarce resource’ is nonsense in an age of quantitative easing.

                It was always a nonsense to treat money as a scarce resource.

                • Craig H

                  Economics doesn’t consider money a resource.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    Yeah, actually, it does. That’s why the government keeps saying that we can’t afford anything despite having a) resources available and b) people to utilise those resources. Why they keep saying that we need foreign investment to do stuff that we’re quite capable of doing ourselves.

                    It is actually why some people keep demanding that we go back to the gold standard as well.

          • The Chairman

            Investment seeks return and it’s these returns heading offshore that are detrimental to our economy.

            Yet, the line NZ requires offshore investment is often touted. Unfortunately, even by Labour.

            • b waghorn

              Profits leaving , investment entering , isn’t that money doing what it was invented for ie; circulating to provide the greese for society to operate.?
              It only fails because the rules allow people to accumulate to much.

              • The Chairman

                “It only fails because the rules allow people to accumulate to much.”

                No. It also fails our economy when it heads offshore.

                Offshore returns generally exceed the amount initially invested, leaving us with a fiscal shortfall.

                Accumulating to much is largely a tax and low wages issue. Whereas, the concern here is the far greater after tax returns heading offshore.

                Unless you are suggesting returns heading offshore can’t (through the tax system or capital controls) exceed the initial amount invested? Ceasing the current and detrimental fiscal shortfall offshore investment creates

                • b waghorn

                  “Unless you are suggesting returns heading offshore can’t (through the tax system or capital controls) exceed the initial amount invested?”
                  How you stop nz getting plundered for profit is beyond my education.
                  But the horse has bolted on stopping nz become part of the global financial system, so those involved would be better to spend their energies on fixing the system instead of pulling it to bits and starting again.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    How you stop nz getting plundered for profit is beyond my education.

                    Easy – ban offshore ownership.

                    But the horse has bolted on stopping nz become part of the global financial system, so those involved would be better to spend their energies on fixing the system instead of pulling it to bits and starting again.

                    You can’t fix the present system. It really is that broken. All we can do is replace it and if that requires leaving the present global financial system then so be it. We actually can do that.

                    • b waghorn

                      Whether (I hope that’s the right whether Alwyn) you like it or not a huge amount of nzs population derives their income from export, so how you can build an economic Berlin wall without driving us into poverty is beyond me.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      Who said anything about stopping exports or imports?

                      We could still do that without being part of the present global financial system. In fact, doing so would start the end of the present system.

                      And then there’s the simple fact that even if those both stopped the people presently dependent upon them could find something else to do. Once we recognise that we don’t need foreign money then we actually have far greater possibilities open to us.

                      And why are you trying to talk to Alwyn? He got banned.

                    • b waghorn

                      Can you point to any country that the government is the sole provider of money where they still function as a part of global trade?
                      I ask this because I and many like me enjoy producing a product like meat ,fruit or logs who’s lifestyle would die if we where to come up against sanctions..

                      PS Alwyn likes to haunt me for errors,

                    • pat

                      “You can’t fix the present system. It really is that broken. All we can do is replace it and if that requires leaving the present global financial system then so be it. We actually can do that.”

                      Inclined to agree the present system cannot be fixed but if we are being honest any attempt to operate outside it comes with great risk, just ask Venezuela.
                      Its possible, maybe desirable but I don’t know if the majority of kiwis are yet ready to take that route…..perhaps in the not too distant future

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      I ask this because I and many like me enjoy producing a product like meat ,fruit or logs who’s lifestyle would die if we where to come up against sanctions.

                      1. Things change – get over yourself. Find something else you enjoy
                      2. Chances are there wouldn’t be world wide sanctions. Sure, the US, UK and probably the EU would but that still leaves around 5 billion others to trade with

                      Its possible, maybe desirable but I don’t know if the majority of kiwis are yet ready to take that route…..perhaps in the not too distant future

                      I don’t think it’s possible ATM as not enough people know just how much of a total scam our present financial system is but it will be in the future.

                    • b waghorn

                      “1. Things change – get over yourself. Find something else you enjoy”

                      With a sales pitch like that you’ve got a big future in politics. 🙂

                    • The Chairman

                      @ Pat

                      Like the Pineapple Lumps ad portrays, Kiwis are generally a little slow when it comes to such matters. However, time is also the enemy in this regard.

                      Trade agreements (such as the TPP) further weaken Government’s ability to respond to this form of fiscal extraction.

                      It doesn’t help Kiwis become better informed, hence more willing to act when even the Labour Party continue to tout the globalist line (NZ requires offshore investment).

                      It’s also disappointing to see there has been more discussion on the flag (on this site) than this far more important issue.

                  • The Chairman

                    @ b waghorn

                    Yes, the horse has bolted on stopping NZ becoming part of the global financial system.

                    However, the time to act is now.

                    The more we move forward, the greater the damage becomes and the less we can do about it.

                    Trade agreements (such as the TPP) further weakens Government’s ability to respond to this form of fiscal extraction.

                    At the moment, we still have the right to decline offshore investment, yet we encourage it And we still have the ability to instate taxes and perhaps capital controls.

                    While trading with other willing nations is fine, allowing them to own NZ’s resources, the means of production and servicing, robs us of the fiscal benefits.

    • Descendant Of Sssmith 9.2

      It’s why we should take expenses out of the picture and tax on gross sales (turnover).

      Some countries have started doing this in a small way.


      • The Chairman 9.2.1

        While taxing in such a way will allow a larger tax slice, it overlooks the massive amount that still escapes our economy and heads offshore.

        Therefore, if those companies were NZ owned, not only would we obtain the tax but profits would also remain.

        • Descendant Of Sssmith

          It’s more about re-distribution of tax collection.

          Assume we collect the same amount of tax as we do now.

          Many existing firms would pay less as many of these firms would pay more.

          It’s simpler so compliance costs would be less and it would discourage much of the vertical integration that allows layers of businesses to charge each other down the chain to minimise profit.

          I’d also support if NZ has a good economic year that by law 50% of any surplus gets returned to businesses.

          • Draco T Bastard

            As far as profits going offshore is concerned the only option is to ban offshore ownership.

          • The Chairman

            Again, you are overlooking the issue of concern.

            Tax is only a small slice of the profits earned.

            Therefore, the key issue here is not re-distribution of tax collected, it’s about re-distribution of total returns generated.

            As a number of NZ’s most lucrative sectors/companies are offshore owned, the more we increase our GDP, the more that currently heads offshore.

            Draco – A form of capital controls that prevents this form of capital flight would vastly stimulate our local economy. Ensuring returns stay onshore.

            • Descendant Of Sssmith

              Profit however is just a private tax, garnered by the expenses you can set against it.

              Many of the expenses are dubious but legitimate as it currently stands. IRD has some success in sorting out non-legitimate ones eg banks charging themselves a fee for using their own name but it’s still open to lots of abuse to show profit as minimal. Gross income takes expenses out of the picture.

              It’s not just the profit going offshore – many of the companies as we know pay minimal tax.

              It the value of the expenses claimed as well.

              Part of the solution to some of this is the renationlisation of infrastructure companies and the letting of government contracts to be limited where possible and practicable to NZ companies.

              It seems that in many cases when the overseas companies win these contracts they just take a big cut and sub-contract NZers anyway.

              I’m not saying we shouldn’t increase the tax take but it is important also in my view that every business pays some tax. Every business that has the benefit of operating in NZ should contribute.

              • The Chairman

                @ Descendant Of Sssmith

                No, it’s not just profit going offshore. As Draco rightly pointed out, the end result is we largely become serfs for the international elite.

                While I hear what you are saying (and of course you are correct, a number aren’t paying their fair share of tax) new tax settings would have to capture all profits that exceed the initial and ongoing investment to cease the fiscal shortfall offshore investment creates.

                Such stringent tax settings (as such stringent capital controls discussed above) would largely discourage further investment going forward, while also resulting in a number of current international investments in NZ pulling out.

                Therefore, taxing to any lesser extent merely allows us to clip the ticket, but doesn’t deal with the larger concerns (serfdom and profits heading offshore).

            • Draco T Bastard

              A form of capital controls that prevents this form of capital flight would vastly stimulate our local economy.

              If you could get such capital controls in place then it may work but then it still leaves us open to becoming serfs for the international rich which is another consideration that needs to be taken into account.

              • The Chairman

                @ Draco

                “If you could get such capital controls in place then it may work but then it still leaves us open to becoming serfs for the international rich…”

                Such stringent capital controls would largely discourage further investment going forward, while also resulting in a number of current international investments in NZ pulling out.

    • Draco T Bastard 9.3

      All info here.

  10. The Chairman 10

    An interesting poll result over at the Daily Blog

    Who would you vote for if an election was announced tomorrow?
    Greens (29%, 1,551 Votes)
    Labour (26%, 1,398 Votes)
    National (17%, 944 Votes)
    NZ First (16%, 868 Votes)
    MANA (8%, 415 Votes)
    ACT (2%, 130 Votes)
    Maori Party (1%, 73 Votes)
    United Future (0%, 18 Votes)

    Note: NZ Democrats for Social Credit was not listed

  11. ianmac 11

    Sugar. The Guardian has published pretty compulsive evidence on sugar/obesity/heart.
    “Lustig argues forcefully that fructose, a form of sugar ubiquitous in modern diets, is a “poison” culpable for America’s obesity epidemic.”

    • ianmac 11.1

      PS. I think the article wrongly condemns fructose which is a natural sugar. Should read sucrose as the demon?

      • RedLogix 11.1.1

        Interestingly there is a fair bit of material about suggesting that fructose above a certain threshold is just as bad, of not possibly worse, than sucrose.

        • ianmac

          The sugar industry, like the tobacco industry will fight back and fight dirty. (Probably with the support of the current Government.) As my elderly mother always said all things in moderation. She lived to 97.

      • Editractor 11.1.2

        Although it is processed, sucrose, the main form of table sugar, is also natural in that it is derived from a plant source. Sucrose is a disaccharide, being composed essentially of one glucose molecule and one fructose molecule but the fructose molecule is the major cause for concern as it is metabolised differently to glucose, mainly by the liver (when you eat sucrose it is broken down into the separate sugar units). Fructose can also be found naturally in fruit but you’d have to eat silly amounts of fruit for it to be an issue.

      • Draco T Bastard 11.1.3

        Last time I looked, all sugars were natural.

        It’s not sugar per se that’s the problem but excessive dietary sugar.

      • Colonial Viper 11.1.4

        We should note that arsenic, strychnine and rattlesnake venom are “natural” as well.

        Lustig on fructose:


  12. Penny Bright 12

    So far this week – three of Bernie Sanders’ ‘unrealistic / pie in the sky’ policies have been implemented?

    1) The $15 per hour minimum wage has been passed into law in two of the most populous States in the USA, California and New York:


    “While the media hyped a false narrative about Bernie Sanders’ competence and policies, three of Sanders’ policy proposals were implemented this week.

    What’s sad is that as the biggest leak in world historycame to light, exposing 140 different politicians from 50 countries engaged in egregious tax dodging, corporate-owned media outlets chose instead to take their lead for the week’s news from a greasy tabloid’serror-laden editorial board meeting with Bernie Sanders. The main narrative that came out of that interview was that the Vermont senator didn’t know how his own policies worked, with the Washington Post gleefully climbing on board.

    However, the Huffington Post’s Ryan Grim accurately pointed out that the interview transcript revealed both Sanders’ expertise and the New York Daily News editorial board’s sheer ignorance of both financial policy and civics. The New York Times and many other publications also balked at the sudden media attack on Sanders’ accurate answers.

    While this all played out, Sanders watched as two governors, a federal agency head, and a president implemented some of his “unrealistic” policy proposals.

    1. New York and California pass a $15/hour minimum wage

    Bernie Sanders has called for a “living wage” of $15/hour to be the new national minimum wage, introducing legislation in July 2015 and joining the Fight for $15 during their events. Before taxes, this would amount to $31,200 a year for a full-time worker. It’s not exactly enough to live like a king, but enough for a person to be able to pay their bills and not live in abject poverty.

    Even though detractors have been saying that doubling the minimum wage isn’t possible, and to aim lower, governors of two of the most populous states (New York and California) have joined other major cities in signing $15/hour minimum wage bills into law.

    While Hillary Clinton tried to take credit for the New York law by being present at the signing ceremony, she’s only championed raising the minimum wage to $12/hour. And Sanders’ calls for $15/hour appear to be on their way to reality in other states as well, as 25 cities in Oregon are now on their way to having a $15/hour minimum wage, with Boston and Massachusetts considering the possibility. ….”

    Penny Bright
    2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

  13. North 13

    From day one Key has been cynically marketed so as to foster a subliminal appreciation that he’s a horsing around decent guy who really cares about New Zealand. Subliminal is great because it neutralises thinking. I believe that appreciation is under serious challenge. Increasingly and from issue to issue Key shows he cares only about personal power, money, the very rich. There is advancing cognisance of that and it’s making its way into the subliminal appreciation. At which point what is Key ? A nasty, greedy, philosophically bankrupt, socially illterate, fraud of man who’s been conning us for years. The game is over Traitor Boy.

  14. ianmac 14

    And an interview on RNZ this morning re Iceland with Smári McCarthy chief technologist for the Organised Crime and Corruption Reporting Project in Sarajevo. He confirmed that the PM has resigned from PM and a very recent poll had 80% saying he should resign from Parliament. Lynn Freeman missed an opportunity for a good interview.
    The Pirate Party has surged up to 40+%.
    Not up for replay yet.

    • greywarshark 14.1

      See below. The audio through Skype became fractured so Lynn may not have asked everything planned.

    • dv 15.1

      What interested me

      Anderson indicated he had no interest in getting a job on release.

      So how is he supporting himself?

      Money in Trusts?

      • saveNZ 15.1.1

        +1 DV – Yep how is he supporting himself?

        • sabine

          Work and Income. If he can’t work as part of his parole conditions, nor leave his accommodation freely, than he has the right to a benefit to cover his living expenses.
          Essentially he is a welfare bludger, and publicly stating that he is not trying to get a job, hopefully will get him sanctioned by Work and Income.
          Not holding my breath tho.

      • The Chairman 15.1.2

        One can only wonder, dv.

        The fraud did leave the bank with losses of $70 million.

      • Draco T Bastard 15.1.3

        Yep, probably. The money and assets that should have been taken off of him as they were obviously obtained via fraud.

        • dv

          But if in a trust they are not his!!!

          Courts should have the ability to look through trusts and rule on asset distribution appropriately

          • Stuart Munro

            There should only be three kinds of trusts. Charitable. Heritage or conservation. & for minors or dependents. Rest should be broken up.

          • Draco T Bastard

            But if in a trust they are not his!!!

            Part of the delusion of trusts and capitalism.

            This is how it should be so that criminals don’t get to keep the proceeds of their crime:

            If he paid into the trust then they’re his. If he’s a beneficiary of the trust then the assets are his.

  15. Jenny 16

    Without reliable agricultural farming, human civilisation becomes unviable.

    Why Fiji is a glimpse of the future for humanity.


    Time to stop the madness, and severely rein in fossil fuels.

    No Deep Sea Oil Drilling!

    No New Coal MInes!

    No New Motorways! (switch the $11 billion RONS funding to public transport)

    New Zealand needs to set and example to the world.

    Business As Usual, BAU, is not an option!

    New Zealand needs to show solidarity with the Pacific front line climate change states, worst affected by climate change.

    Anything less, is treason to humanity and future generations, and in particular our Island neighbours, most immediately affected.

  16. Penny Bright 17

    Does NZ Prime Minister John Key use tax havens?

    How is that not a fair question ?


    “John Key is taking a risk defending the foreign trust regime in the wake of the global trust fund scandal and its New Zealand links.

    If the Prime Minister assumes that the issue may be over within the week, then he is calculating that nothing else with New Zealand connections is lurking in the devastating leak of records from Panama law firm Mossack Fonseca. Mr Key insists New Zealand is not a tax haven but even if it does not fit the criteria, the existence here of nearly 12,000 foreign trusts suggests the financial rules, such as they are, appeal to the industry.

    The trusts pay no New Zealand tax on foreign earnings. Their beneficiaries are not registered and their accounts are not filed with any public body. The Government argued this week that arrangements with other countries to share tax information was a powerful deterrent against individuals who sought to conceal their affairs.

    Tax experts however have challenged these assurances. Craig Elliffe, a tax law specialist at the University of Auckland, described the disclosure rules as ” almost dangerously weak”.

    By themselves, foreign trusts are not illegal. The use of tax havens is second nature to owners of substantial assets.

    The trove of documents in the Panama Papers, however, has set off inquiries into the source of some assets. The European tax commissioner, Pierre Moscovici, called much of the activity “immoral, unethical and simply unacceptable”.


    Penny Bright
    2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

  17. Tautoko Mangō Mata 18

    And so it begins. While our Govt is rushing to get the ratification through for the TPP that they signed, the US are beginning to alter it to suit their large corporate donors.

    USTR Plans To Use TPP Implementation To Address Longstanding IP Problems
    Buried in the 2016 National Trade Estimate (NTE) report is a pledge from the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative to use the implementation of the Trans-Pacific Partnership to address what the administration views as longstanding shortcomings in intellectual property (IP) protection in all 11 TPP countries.


    Time to read the following paper by Jane Kelsey.


    • Draco T Bastard 18.1

      Yep, time for the US to make life far more expensive for the rest of the TPP nations so that their corporates can make more profits.

  18. Penny Bright 19

    David Cameron fought EU tax rules to help protect his daddy’s offshore trust?

    How long before David Cameron is the next Prime Minister to resign over the Panama Papers scandal?


    “Amid Panama Papers leak, it has emerged the U.K. prime minister intervened to prevent the EU from requiring offshore trusts in tax havens to reveal owners.

    British Prime Minister David Cameron personally intervened against cracking down on offshore trusts in tax havens by the European Union in 2013, in what seems to be his efforts to protect his father’s trust, which was revealed by the recent Panama Papers leak.
    …. ”

    Penny Bright
    2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

  19. greywarshark 20

    Women and men interested in women’s role in forming NZ – good radio interview this morning between Phillipa Tolley and Barbara Brookes who has researched and written a book about it. Very good interview to listen to.

    Guest host Philippa Tolley interviews Barbara Brookes, Professor of History at the University of Otago, about her new book A History of New Zealand Women.

    also – intriguing story:

    The Edwardian woman who fled to New Zealand for love
    Grace Oakeshott
    Married Englishwoman Grace Oakeshott faked her own death in 1907 so she could escape with her lover to New Zealand.
    British author Jocelyn Robson has been researching the life of Englishwoman Grace Oakeshott, who faked her own death in 1907 so she could escape her marriage and flee to New Zealand with her lover.
    Jocelyn Robson talks with Kathryn Ryan about the remarkable true story

  20. I will be on Kevin Barrett’s Truth jihad show live today! I have been booked from 1-2 PM but will be on standby from 12 pm in case he can’t make a connection with his first guest!

    I will be talking about John Key, his banking, tax haven creating career, the Panama Papers, Earthquakes, Lord Ashcroft’s secret visits to name a few subjects!

    Here is the link to the program: http://FreedomSlips.com and click Studio B

  21. greywarshark 22

    Suad Amiry: conservation architecture and Palestine
    9:40 AM. Guest host Philippa Tolley interviews Palestinian conservation architect and writer Suad Amiry, founder of the Riwaq Centre for Architectural Conservation, and author of Sharon and My Mother in Law, and Golda Slept Here.

    Ted talk

    • weka 22.1

      I caught some of that, she was very good. Her description of how Palestinians lost their homes, gardens, things with personal connection (not just their country) and what that means, especially for the people living only a few kilometres from what they have lost with someone else now living there, was both poignant and a far better explanation of why the Palestinian/Israeli situation is so intractable than any amount of geopolitical theory.

      • greywarshark 22.1.1

        Especially poignant when someone went to see their old home and were not allowed to look at it, or even to talk to the new occupant. And I think that they were seeking an old photo which had to be left behind, and which just might have been recoverable.

  22. b waghorn 23


    Mr Eaqub on the nz s trust business, there seems to be parallels with said trust business and dotcoms mega business, in that while both are probably not directly involved in illegal actions , they are certainly providing a vehicle for dodgy behaviour.

  23. The Chairman 24

    Seems the Labour Party are to blame for the NZ trusts at the centre of the current controversy.

    Albeit, along with National’s failure to correct the situation.


  24. rhinocrates 25

    Not a surprise in principle, but interesting and useful to see the geography of the connections between the most powerful corporations:


    Also, positing the end of the nation-state:


  25. Penny Bright 26

    How long before UK Prime Minister David Cameron resigns?

    (Wonder how the UK protest today outside Downing St is going?)


    “David Cameron’s terrible week ends with calls for resignation over Panama Papers

    PM should have come clean earlier about shares in father’s offshore investment fund to avoid further damage, ..

    David Cameron was in Washington rubbing shoulders with world leaders, sun-tanned and relaxed after a holiday in Lanzarote, when an email revealing what the Guardian knew about his father’s tax affairs dropped on Conservative HQ.

    From that moment, the prime minister would have known there was a serious risk of people finding out about the £30,000 of shares he previously owned in Ian Cameron’s offshore investment fund.

    It would look terrible to a public already outraged about tax avoidance that a wealthy young Cameron had chosen to buy shares in Blairmore, the fund based in Panama and the Bahamas that never paid a penny of tax in Britain.

    This was the point at which Cameron should have made a clean breast of the facts, Labour and some of his own Conservative MPs now say.

    Leadership challenge

    It would have saved the prime minister the worst week of his professional life, which has ended with calls for him to resign, a flurry of bets on a leadership challenge this year and undermined public trust in his premiership.

    Penny Bright
    2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

  26. Penny Bright 27

    Cutting edge – political SATIRE 🙂


    “I’m comfortable that NZ is now a corrupt, polluted TAX HAVEN”


  27. dv 28

    Dosent link Penny

    The page you requested cannot be displayed right now. It may be temporarily unavailable, the link you clicked on may be broken or expired, or you may not have permission to view this page.

  28. Penny Bright 29


    This latest poll result has got to be the ‘kiss of death’ for UK Prime Minister David Cameron?

    The ‘unelectable’ Leader of the UK Labour Party – Jeremy Corbyn – now has higher approval ratings than (current) UK Prime Minister David Cameron?!

    On top of everything else – surely David Cameron’s position as Prime Minister is now simply untenable?

    So – how long before PM David Cameron resigns – or will he be rolled?

    (Remember – there is a protest outside Downing St against David Cameron at 11am 9 April 2016 (UK time – they’re 12 hours behind us ).


    “DAVE’S DARKEST DAY: Tax scandal, EU leaflet row…now public like Cameron LESS than CORBYN

    DAVID Cameron has endured his darkest day in Downing Street as his approval ratings slumped LOWER than Jeremy Corbyn’s for the first time. ….”

    Penny Bright
    2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

    • mary_a 29.1

      Thanks Penny (29) for the info, particularly that of a protest at Downing St. This is something our msm should be reporting on. However, I’d say msm is under strict orders to comply with the NatzKEY hierarchy or else!

      I hope Cameron’s present situation gives FJK cause to sweat and sweat hard! Hopefully he will be having some very unpleasant sleepless nights!

  29. Penny Bright 30

    So Hillary Clinton didn’t get an invite to the Vatican?

    (Neither did Donald Trump or Ted Cruz – as it happens).

    Bernie Sanders did …..


    “Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders will travel to the Vatican later this month, a visit that would provide images of the candidate at a major international venue as his foreign policy qualifications are under attack by rival Hillary Clinton.
    Sanders’ visit to attend an April 15 conference on economic and environmental issues hosted by a pontifical academy will put him at the seat of the Roman Catholic Church just four days before the New York primary.
    The visit also potentially injects into the Democratic nominating contest the agenda of Pope Francis, one of the most popular world leaders whose leadership of the Catholic church is especially admired by the political progressives who play an outsized role in Democratic primaries.

    Penny Bright
    2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

  30. Gangnam Style 31

    Twitter going off with #resigncameron ! https://twitter.com/hashtag/ResignCameron?src=hash bugger the mainstream news! Theres a tropical dress code for the protest & someone has found an old tweet from Osbourne spouting that tax evaders are criminals. Reckon this could be it for Cameron? Dirty dirty rightwing hollowman gets his oats.

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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Additional testing to strengthen border and increase safety of workers
    New testing measures are being put in place to increase the safety of border workers and further strengthen New Zealand’s barriers against COVID-19, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “These strengthened rules – to apply to all international airports and ports – build on the mandatory testing orders we’ve ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • More public housing delivered in Auckland
    The Government’s investment in public housing is delivering more warm, dry homes with today’s official opening of 82 new apartments in New Lynn by the Housing Minister Megan Woods. The Thom Street development replaces 16 houses built in the 1940s, with brand new fit-for-purpose public housing that is in high ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Agreement advanced to purchase up to 5 million COVID-19 vaccines
    The Government has confirmed an in-principle agreement to purchase up to 5 million COVID-19 vaccines – enough for 5 million people – from Janssen Pharmaceutica, subject to the vaccine successfully completing clinical trials and passing regulatory approvals in New Zealand, says Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods. “This agreement ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Jobs for Nature funding will leave a conservation legacy for Waikanae awa
    Ninety-two jobs will be created to help environmental restoration in the Waikanae River catchment through $8.5 million of Jobs for Nature funding, Conservation Minister Kiritapu Allan announced today. “The new funding will give a four-year boost to the restoration of the Waikanae awa, and is specifically focussed on restoration through ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago